President Rajapaksa holds discussions with world leaders enhancing bilateral relations
Posted on September 27th, 2014

By Janaka Alahapperuma

President Mahinda Rajapaksa who is currently in New York City, after delivering his address at the 69th Sessions of the United Nations General Assembly held discussions with several state leaders enhancing bilateral relations. In the series of meetings being held by the President with world leaders at the UN Headquarters he has held bilateral discussions with the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot this morning.

Sri Lankan President has briefed the Prime Minister Tony Abbot about the recent economic and other developments in Sri Lanka. Australian Prime Minister has commended about the remarkable achievement being made in implementing LLRC recommendations and on Sri Lanka’s ability to maintain a 7.8 percent GDP growth with the potential of increasing it further. Commenting on the reconciliation process in Sri Lanka, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said, the fact that LLRC is going so well is a credit to you.”

The Australian premier has also commended Sri Lanka for the assistance being given to curb human trafficking and bogus asylum seekers coming to Australia. Attention was drawn to further improving cooperation between Sri Lanka and Australia in many areas.

This discussion was followed by the meeting between the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tameem Bin Hamad Al-Thani and the President. Attention was directed to many important matters during the meeting. Both leaders also discussed ways in which the two countries can further enhance bilateral relations.

The main topic of the discussion between President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Prime Minister of Malta Joseph Muscat when they met at UNHQ was the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). Attention was drawn to further improving cooperation between Sri Lanka and Malta, during the discussions had with Maltese Prime Minister. Both leaders expressed their willingness to exchange experiences between the two countries solidifying the friendly ties.

Discussion with the Maltese Prime Minister was followed by the meeting between President Rajapaksa and President of Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta. The Kenyan President extended a warm welcome to his Sri Lankan counterpart. They discussed further enhancing friendly relations between the two nations as well as furthering Sri Lanka’s relations with African countries overall.

The Secretary General of The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) Dr. Abdul Latif bin Rashid Al Zayani also called on President Mahinda Rajapaksa on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly at the UN Headquarters in New York.  The President and Mr. Zayani discussed existing friendly relations between Sri Lanka and GCC as well as enhancing relations with member states. 

This is President Rajapaksa’s seventh address to the UN General Assembly. He addressed the General Assembly for the first time in 2006. The President is scheduled to hold few more bilateral discussions with several world leaders including Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi today in parallel to the UN General Assembly Sessions.

 Meanwhile the Business Council for International Understanding (BCIU) also held a briefing for President Mahinda Rajapaksa in New York City.  Representatives from a number of leading U.S. companies, including those such as Boeing, Citigroup and Exxon Mobil, participated in the briefing organised by the BCIU.

Minister of External Affairs Prof. G.L. Peiris, Monitoring MP, Sajin Vass Gunawardena, Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga, Secretary to the Ministry of External Affairs Mrs. Kshenuka Senewiratne, Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations Dr. Palitha Kohona, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the United States Prasad Kariyawasam and Deputy Permanent Representative Major General Shavendra Silva were present during these meetings

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