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President addresses NAM Head of State Session

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe commended President Yoweri Museveni for assuming leadership at the 19th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit in Kampala, Uganda and expressed gratitude to President Museveni and Uganda for hosting the summit.

He highlighted the current global challenges, including the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, the shift in the post-Cold War order, and emerging multipolar dynamics.

President Wickremesinghe emphasized the need for NAM to reinvent itself, transforming into the largest bloc representing the Global South.

Proposing the recognition of Palestine and addressing various geopolitical, economic, and technological issues, he called for a united NAM with updated objectives to build a multipolar world.

The President urged for a dynamic bloc capable of shaping the new global order, emphasizing that the future lies in their hands.

President Wickremesinghe further said that Sri Lanka also proposes that the State of Palestine be established within 5 years. “There cannot be a two state solution based on one state – Israel. No resolution is possible without a state of Palestine. Therefore, in line with multiple UN Resolutions, and the Declaration of this Summit, the international community must recognise the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem as territories coming within the State of Palestine and in addition there should be no change in the ethnic composition of Gaza. Sri Lanka also proposes that the State of Palestine be established within 5 years and no more,” he said.

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Ali Sabry PC, Minister of State Mr. Chamara Sampath Dasanayake, Members of Parliament Mr. Kings Nelson, Mr. Nimal Piyatissa, Mr. Kumarasiri Ratnayake, Mr. Udayakantha Gunathilake, President’s Secretary Mr. Saman Ekanayake, President’s Senior Adviser on Climate Change Mr. Ruwan Wijewardene were also present on this occasion.

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Additional Health Secy. to Court

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Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Health Dr. Saman Rathnayake who was arrested and remanded over the medicine procurement scandal was escorted to the Maligakanda Magistrate’s Court, to provide a confidential or In Camera statement.

Saman Ratnayake, who was interrogated for over seven hours, was arrested at the Criminal Investigation Department last Friday.

He was presented before the Maligakanda court last Saturday.

When the case was called, the magistrate remanded the suspect until March 14, considering the facts presented by the Deputy Solicitor General Lakmini Girihagama.

The suspect thereafter informed court via counsel of his willingness to provide a statement In Camera.

Therefore, the magistrate ordered the suspect to appear before the court on March 4, today, to deliver the confidential statement.

(News 1st)

(Except for the headline, this story, originally published by News 1st has not been edited by SLM staff)

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Electricity, petroleum supply, declared essential services

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An Extraordinary Gazette has been issued declaring all activities related to the supply of electricity and petroleum products as essential services.

The relevant gazette has been issued by the Secretary to the President Saman Ekanayake on Sunday (03) by order of the President Ranil Wickremesinghe.

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Fuel price revision likely tonight?

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A fuel price revision is likely to take place tonight (04), as per sources.

The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) stated that although the fuel price was slated to be revised at the end of February, the price revision will possibly take place today.

The CPC amends the fuel prices monthly as per the pricing formula. Accordingly, the prices were last revised on January 31, where the prices of octane 92 petrol, octane 95 petrol, super diesel and kerosene were increased.

Against this backdrop, President Ranil Wickremesinghe has issued an Extraordinary Gazette declaring all services connected to the supply of electricity and the supply or distribution of petroleum products and fuel as essential services with effect from 03 March 2024. 

Accordingly, the proclamation states that the services specified have been declared as Essential Public Service considering it necessary that the services provided by any Public Corporation or Government Department or Local Authority or Co-operative Society or any branch thereof being a Department or Corporation or Local Authority or Co-operative Society, which is engaged in provision of the services specified, is essential to the life of the community and is likely to be impeded or interrupted.

In the meantime, the Fuel Distributors’ Association alleges that the CPC has taken steps to incur a usage fee of 35% of the monthly rebate amount received by the fuel distributors. President of the association Shelton Fernando claimed that through this action, it will not be possible for them to even meet the daily expenses for the distribution activities.(adaderana.lk)

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