Last respects paid to the late fmr. Speaker (Pics)
Parliament paid their final respects to former Speaker – Joseph Michael Perera, today (30).
President Ranil Wickremesinghe, Speaker – Mahinda Yapa Abeywardana, Deputy Speaker – Ajith Rajapakse, Leader of the Opposition – Sajith Premadasa, Cabinet Members, MPs and former MPs Members of Parliament, former Members of Parliament were present to pay their respects.Furthermore, former Presidents – Mahinda Rajapaksa and Maithreepala Sirisena as well as former Speaker Karu Jayasuriya were also present to pay final respects.
Ambassadors, the Parliament secretariat headed by Mr. Dhammika Dasanayake, Secretary-General of Parliament ,former members of staff and staff affiliated to the Parliament and relatives of the Late former Speaker were present at this occasion.
Upon the arrival of the hearse carrying the remains of Mr. Joseph Michael Perera at the main steps of the Parliament complex where the Speaker, President, Deputy Speaker, Party Leaders, Secretary General of Parliament – Ms. Kushani Rohanadeera, Chief of Staff and Deputy Secretary General of Parliament received the remains of the late former Speaker.
Thereafter the Serjeant-at-Arms, Deputy Serjeant-at-Arms and Assistant Sergeant-at- Arms escort the remains received, along the red carpet which was kept at the special ceremonial hall located in the front hall of the Parliament building.
The President and Speaker signed a note of condolence following paying their last respects. Thereafter, Deputy Speaker, Leader of the Opposition, Party Leaders, former Presidents, Members of Parliament, Ambassadors, The Secretariate and other dignitaries also joined to pay last respects.
The funeral ended with the Speaker and others leading the remains along the red carpet and placing it back in the hearse.
China hosts appreciation reception for SL rescue mission of capsized Chinese vessel (Pics)
The Chinese embassy in Sri Lanka hosted an appreciation reception on Tuesday (June 06) to appreciate the Sri Lanka Navy divers who participated in the search and rescue operation of the capsized Chinese vessel – Lupeng Yuanyu 028.
Before the reception, a minute of silence for the victims of the tragedy was observed and a special video clip presented by the Sri Lankan Navy to introduce the heroic rescue mission was played.
During the event, 09 divers of the Sri Lanka Navy were felicitated for their bravery. Floral tributes were paid to Lieutenant Commander S.A.I.A Subhasinghe, Petty Officer K.P.A. Arunajith, Petty Officer E.M.D.A. Ekanayaka, Petty Officer D.D.N. Jayathissa, Leading Seaman H.D. Darshana, Leading Seaman N.M.C.L. Narayana, Able Seaman W.W.N.C. Sandaruwan, Able Seaman I.D.L.M. Dissanayaka, and Able Seaman R.S. Kumarage.
The event was attended by a host of distinguished guests including Chinese ambassador in Colombo – Qi Zhenhong, Chief of Staff and National Security Advisor to Sri Lanka’s President – Mr. Sagala Ratnayake, the Indonesian ambassador to Sri Lanka – Madam Dewi Gustina Tobing, the Australian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka – Mr. Paul Stephens, Minister of Transport and Mass Media – Mr. Bandula Gunawardena, State Minister of Defence – Mr. Pramitha Bandara Tennakoon, State Minister of Foreign Affairs – Mr. Tharaka Balasuriya, Chief of Defence Staff – Gen. Shavendra Silva, Commander of the Army – Lieutenant General Vikum Liyanage, Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy – Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera, the commanding officer and crew of the SLNS Vijayabahu, diplomats and media.
Speaking, the Chinese ambassador – Mr. Qi Zhenhong praised the SLNS Vijayabahu crew and pointed out that the Sri Lankan divers were the first to dive into the water and enter the hull at the risk of their lives. “The Chinese people and all the families of the crew members of the fishing boat will always remember this special friendship,” he said.
The ambassador also thanked the Sri Lankan President – Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe “for his decisive and timely decision to provide full assistance” and defence officials for their immediate response despite the long distance.
“I would like to thank all the countries and agencies involved in the search and rescue operation for their timely help. This is not only a joint action to fulfill international obligations, but also a glorious mission to demonstrate the spirit of international humanitarianism,” he added.
Addressing the gathering, Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy – Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera said that this was the first ever diving operation by the Navy so far from Sri Lanka and that it was ‘truly an international effort. The incident had taken place in the Australian Search and Rescue region, the vessel involved was Chinese, the SLNS Vjayabahu was granted by the USA and almost 95% of the diving team had trained in India, he pointed out.
Adding a few words, Chief of Staff and National Security Advisor to Sri Lanka’s President – Mr. Sagala Ratnayake also commended the bravery of the SLNS Vijayabahu crew and also thanked the Chinese embassy not only for the felicitation of the divers, but for inviting the entire crew of the SLNS Vjayabahu vessel for the event.
“As far as our relations go with China, I hope this helps us to strengthen it. You have held us through many tough times, especially during the crisis that we’ve had,” he said.
Duty Free Shops at Jaffna Airport! (Pics)
Duty free shopping facilities have been made available for the passengers arriving at the Jaffna International Airport.
The Belt and Road Initiative Sri Lanka in a tweet said that they have forwarded to Chinese tour agents to promote Jaffna for Chinese tourists in the upcoming season.
14th national war heroes commemoration held (Pics)
The National War Heroes Commemoration Ceremony took place today (19) at the Battaramulla War Heroes Memorial, under the patronage of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces President Ranil Wickremesinghe and Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena.
The media release issued by the PMD also says :
This year marks the 14th anniversary of the victory over LTTE terrorism that lasted for three decades. A total of 28,619 heroes from the Army, Air Force, Navy, Police, and Civil Security Department (CSD) sacrificed their lives for the freedom of the motherland, while over twenty-seven thousand war heroes were rendered disabled. The ceremony was a proud expression of the nation’s gratitude towards these brave individuals.
The ceremony began with the playing of the National Anthem, followed by a two-minute silence observed by the President, the Prime Minister, and others in honour of the fallen war heroes.
The event commenced with religious observances and a special war drumming performance, paying tribute to the courageous soldiers from the Army, Air Force, Navy, Police, and CSD who sacrificed their lives to protect the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The commemoration ceremony was organised by the Ranaviru Seva Authority.
President Ranil Wickremesinghe, Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena, Leader of the Opposition Sajith Premadasa, Minister of Public Security Tiran Alas, Minister of State for Defence Pramita Bandara Thennakoon, other ministers, Senior Advisor to the President on National Security and Chief of Presidential Staff Sagala Ratnayake, Secretary of Defence, Commanders of the three armed forces, Inspector General of Police, Director General of Civil Service Department, Field Marshal Mr. Sarath Fonseka, former commanders of the three armed forces, war heroes, and members of war heroes’ families all paid their respects to the fallen soldiers by laying flowers at the War Heroes Memorial.
(President’s Media Division)
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