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Paris 2024 Olympic, Paralympic mascots unveiled

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The 2024 Paris Olympic and Paralympic mascots are Phrygian caps, which represent freedom in France.

Phrygian caps are historic international badges of liberty, worn by freed slaves in Rome, and later became a symbol of the French Revolution in the late 18th century.

“Rather than an animal, our mascots represent an ideal,” Paris 2024 President Tony Estanguet said. “Since it is familiar to us and appears on our stamps and the pediments of our town halls, it also represents French identity and spirit.”

In a symbol of inclusion, one of the two mascots, called Phryges (free-jes, like freeze with a “j”), wears a prosthetic running blade to highlight Paralympic athletes.

Most Olympic and Paralympic mascots have been animals. The Phryges were compared to Minions or The Smurfs by Paris 2024 organizers.

Each Phryge was given a personality. The Olympic Phryge is “the smart one” with a “methodical mind and alluring charm.”

The Paralympic Phryge is “a party animal, spontaneous and a bit hotheaded.”

The Phryges will be present at major sports and cultural events in France in the run up to the Games, which open July 26, 2024.

France had the first unofficial Olympic mascot for the 1968 Grenoble Winter Games — a man on skis called Schuss.

(NBC Sports)

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CBSL appoints two New Deputy Governors

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The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) has appointed two new Deputy Governors, effective this week. 

Assistant Governor and Secretary to the Governing Board A.A.M. Thassim has been appointed as Deputy Governor starting June 20, while Assistant Governor J.P.R. Karunaratne will assume his new role on June 24.

These appointments were made by the Minister of Finance, following recommendations from the CBSL Governing Board, in accordance with the Central Bank of Sri Lanka Act, No. 16 of 2023.

Mr. Thassim brings over 31 years of experience at CBSL, having worked in various areas including Banking Supervision and Regulation, International Operations, and Risk Management. He has also been part of several high-level committees on monetary policy and financial stability.

Mr. Karunaratne, with over 33 years at CBSL, has extensive experience in the supervision and regulation of financial institutions, currency management, and public debt. He has significantly contributed to strengthening the legal framework and consolidation of the Non-Bank Financial Institutions sector.

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UK rejects TGTE appeal to lift LTTE proscription

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The UK Proscribed Organisations Appeals Commission has rejected an appeal by the Transitional Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) to lift the proscription on the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) as a terrorist organisation in Britain.

Sri Lanka’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ali Sabry, confirmed that the UK will continue to maintain the proscription on the LTTE. Announcing this on ‘X’ (formerly Twitter), Sabry noted that the independent court, headed by a high court judge and two retired senior diplomats, ruled against de-proscribing the LTTE.

The TGTE, which supports the creation of an independent Tamil state in north-east Sri Lanka, had appealed to the UK to lift its ban on the LTTE. However, the TGTE itself is not proscribed in the UK as it seeks to achieve its political and ideological objectives through non-violent means.

Sabry further stated, “The LTTE international network’s approach and strategy is to get foreign governments to de-proscribe the LTTE so that they could revive the LTTE.”

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Thai PM justifies frequent international trips, including a visit to Sri Lanka

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Thailand’s Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin defended his frequent globe-trotting during his first 10 months as leader of the Southeast Asian nation, in remarks aired in a television broadcast on Saturday.

A real estate tycoon and political newcomer who became prime minister in August last year, Srettha made 15 overseas visits and pledged a two-month halt in March in response to public criticism.

“Some of these visits are not avoidable,” he said, referring to those for official meetings of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), as well as to China and Japan, while a third was to Sri Lanka to sign a free trade pact.

Other visits aimed to draw trade and investment, said Srettha, nicknamed Thailand’s salesman, who has often spoken of his goal of luring more foreign investment to the country.

“It’s necessary to go,” he said in the remarks recorded in advance.

Source: Reuters

–Agencies

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