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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 80

Before entering submit PCR test reports obtained within 72 hours, or undergo mandator PCR test – Diplomats Told.

By Manjari Peiris
Colombol, 05 June, (Asiantribune.com):

Foreign Diplomats and their family members entering Sri Lanka must submit PCR test reports obtained within 72 hours prior to their departure from respective countries, says the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

If they fail to provide PCR test reports, a mandatory PCR test will be carried out at the Bandaranaike International Airport, Katunayake.

The Foreign Ministry stated this in a statement issued on 5th June on the revised instructions issued by the Presidential Secretariat on the PCR testing and quarantine procedures for the members of diplomatic corps based or attached in Colombo when they enter/re-enter Sri Lanka.

The Presidential Secretariat took measures to revise the instructions on Thursday 4th June, in order to prevent and minimize the risk of the spread of the Coronavirus in the country.

Accordingly, the Foreign Ministry has taken immediate action to convey the same to all Diplomatic Missions, the Representation Offices of the United Nations and its Specialized Agencies, International Organizations, Honorary Consulates resident in Colombo through diplomatic channels.

The revised instructions state as follows:

• The respective Diplomatic Missions may inform the Ministry of Foreign Relations (MFR) by a Note Verbal, the details of the diplomats and their family members who are scheduled for entry/ re-entry into Sri Lanka for the diplomatic assignments well in advance in order to obtain the prior approval from the concerned authorities.

• The members of the Diplomatic staff and their family members need to submit PCR test reports obtained within 72 hours prior to their departure from respective countries.

• If the members of the Diplomatic staff and their family members are unable to provide PCR test reports, they would be subjected to a mandatory PCR test at the Bandaranaike International Airport, Katunayake.

• Heads of Mission and family members will self-quarantine at the Official Residences. All other arriving Diplomatic staff and their family members will have to follow quarantine procedures at a hotel, recommended by the Government of Sri Lanka (if independent/separate residences are not available), for a period of 14 days, subject to concurrence and supervision of the Heads of Mission.

• The Diplomatic Missions/Representations need to inform the Ministry of Foreign Relations once the 14-day home quarantine is completed and submit the second PCR test report done by the Mission before the Officer resumes duties in the Mission as per the measures taken by the Mission to control and prevent the spread of Coronavirus.

• The Diplomatic Missions/Representations have to forward the travel details of the Diplomatic staff and their family members at least 48 hours prior to their departure to the Chief of Protocol of the Ministry.

The Foreign Ministry further noted that travel by Diplomatic Officers to Sri Lanka will be approved, subject to their concurrence to follow the above procedures issued by the Government of Sri Lanka.

Related news:

An American diplomatic official had reportedly left the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) after refusing to be subjected to a PCR test being carried out at the airport premises.

Vice President of Airport and Aviation Services (Sri Lanka) Limited (AASL) Mr. Rajeev Sooriyaarachchi stated that the US Embassy official had reached BIA at around 1.45 a.m. today onboard a Qatar Airways flight.

He claimed that the official had exited the airport using diplomatic privileges.

However, he added that as per foreign mission regulations the official will have to quarantine for 14 days and subsequently the US Embassy will provide the relevant information to the Ministry of Foreign Relations.

US Embassy spokesperson Nancy VanHorn stated that US diplomatic staff adhere carefully to Sri Lankan COVID-19 guidelines, including quarantine restrictions, in close coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Relations.

The arrival of U.S. diplomatic staff to Sri Lanka also complies with the norms and procedures outlined in the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, just as it applies to arrival of Sri Lankan and other diplomatic staff to the United States, she said in a statement.

Stay Safe, Stay at Home, Stay Informed, But Don't Forget to Wash Your Hands.

- Asian Tribune -

 Before entering submit PCR test reports obtained within 72 hours, or undergo mandator PCR test – Diplomats Told.
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