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Sri Lanka receives World Methodist Peace Award 2022

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The World Methodist Peace Award presented by the World Methodist Council for rendering a commendable service creatively with fearless conformity for the building of peace, justice and harmony in the countries around the world has been awarded to Rev. Ebenezer Joseph, the President of the Methodist Church Sri Lanka.

The World Methodist Peace Award honoured by over 80 million Methodist devotees across the world began in 1977. Since then, this peace award has been presented 38 times to people dedicated to peace and reconciliation around the world.

The award recipients include great personalities who committed to national religious and ethnic harmony in the US, Egypt, England, Zimbabwe, South Korea, Ireland, Germany, Israel, South Africa, Ghana, Argentina, Sierra Leone, Brazil, Australia, Nigeria, Kenya, Bolivia as well as Nelson Mandela, Jimmy Carter, Mikhail Gorbachev and Kofi Annan.

Reverend Ebenezer Joseph is the first recipient of the Peace Award in the Asian region. Born in Kandapola, Nuwara Eliya, Rev. Joseph received his basic education from Wesley College, Colombo.

He then pursued higher education at the Theological Institute in Tamil Nadu and obtained bachelor’s degrees from several universities.

He commenced his career as a Methodist pastor in 1980 and started his work at the City Mission Church located in Dam Street, Colombo. The reverend priest helped the members of the low-income families in the area and played a large role in protecting the Tamil people during the July 83 riots.

From 1999 to 2020, he held the position of General Secretary of the National Christian Board twice.

Rev. Ebenezer Joseph worked very closely with Ven. Itthepane Dhammalankara Maha Nahimi, Maduluawe Sobitha Nahimi, Banagala Upatissa Nayaka Thera, Bellanwila Wimalarathane Nahimi, Murutthettuwe Ananda Thera and other religious leaders to build national unity among the people of the North and South following the end of the war.

Together with Buddhist and other religious leaders, he worked to convey a deep message about the religious harmony of Sri Lanka to the world by participating in various conferences abroad.

He has already received many national and international honors and awards for his work in building reconciliation in the country.

Rev Leslie Dareeju, the General Secretary of the Assembly of the Sri Lanka Methodist Church said the ceremony of presenting the Award to Rev. Ebenezer Joseph will be held on Saturday, February 18 at 5:00 pm at Wesley College, Colombo under the aegis of the President of the World Methodist Church Bishop K.J. Park (S. Korea) and its Secretary General Bishop Ivan Abraham (S.Africa).

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Russian Embassy issues statement on controversial night event in Unawatuna

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The Russian Embassy in Colombo has issued a statement condemning all forms of racial discrimination and nationalism in response to the recent controversy surrounding a planned night event in Unawatuna.

The statement clarified that the event, organized with a “dress-code: white” theme, was planned by a group of entrepreneurs.

The Embassy acknowledged that, according to unconfirmed data, the main promoter and the bar owners who agreed to host the party have been identified as Russian citizens.

However, amidst confusion and concerns over entry conditions, the organizers issued apologies, clarifying that their intentions were not to cause harm, and subsequently called off the event.

The Russian Embassy emphasized Russia’s firm stance against such injustices and expressed a commitment to combating them.

Additionally, the embassy urged all Russian citizens visiting or residing in Sri Lanka to strictly adhere to the country’s laws and respect local customs.

The statement aimed to address the controversy and reinforce the importance of promoting inclusivity and cultural sensitivity.


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TM Dilshan granted Australian citizenship

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Former Sri Lankan cricketer Tillakaratne Dilshan has been granted Australian citizenship, confirmed by Australian MP Jason Wood in a social media post.

Dilshan, renowned for his explosive batting style, played a pivotal role in numerous victories for the Sri Lankan cricket team throughout his career. 

The 47-year-old’s acquisition of Australian citizenship marks a new chapter in his life post-retirement from professional cricket.

“Today’s citizenship ceremony was made even more special with the attendance of Tillakaratne Dilshan, a former Sri Lankan cricketer and captain of the Sri Lanka national cricket team.

“Dilshan is regarded as the best Sri Lankan player in run-chases in ODI history. 

He also holds the record for being the top run-scorer in the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup with 500 runs and scored a century against England in the semi-final. 

Additionally, he was part of the Sri Lankan team that won the 2014 ICC World Twenty20,” posted MP Jason Wood on social media.

MP Jason Wood, welcoming Dilshan as a new Australian citizen and local resident, expressed hope that the veteran would consider joining a local team.

“It was great to hear that his daughter Resandi is following in her father’s footsteps,” he added.

Tillakaratne Dilshan amassed over 10,000 runs from 330 ODIs since his one-day international debut in 1999 against Zimbabwe. 

His Test career spanned 87 matches, during which he accumulated 5492 runs, including a high-score of 193. 

In 80 T20I matches, Dilshan made 1889 runs, featuring one century and 13 half-centuries.

Renowned for his unorthodox style, including the innovative scoop shot, Dilshan proved to be an extremely effective and versatile batsman across formats throughout his career.

Source: ABP News Bureau

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Chinese woman arrested for Financial Fraud

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A 52-year-old Chinese women has been arrested by the police for her alleged involvement in financial fraud amounting to nearly Rs. 8.4 million.

The female suspect was apprehended in the Kollupitiya police division on Saturday, following investigations initiated based on a complaint received by the Colombo Fraud Investigation Bureau on January 31.

According to the police, the arrested individual had reportedly obtained Rs. 8.4 million in total from multiple persons. 

She allegedly claimed that the funds were for a business venture and assured the amount would be returned.

The Colombo Fraud Investigation Bureau is conducting further investigations into the case to gather more details about the nature of the fraud and the individuals affected by it. 

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