Sri Lanka Delegation met IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano on 20 September 2017 during the General Conference

During the 61st General Conference of IAEA, the Sri Lanka Delegation comprising of H.E Mrs. Priyanee Wijesekara, Ambassador of Sri Lanka, Mr K.V.L.T. Jayawardhana, Chairman, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board, Dr Saman Hewamana, Chairman, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Regulatory Council, Mr H.L. Anil Ranjith, Director General, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Regulatory Council, Mr V. A. Waduge, Director General, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board, Ms Dayani Mendis, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka, Mr H.M.N.R. Bandara, Director, International Cooperation and National Liaison Officer to the IAEA Technical Cooperation programme, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board, Ms Irosha Cooray, Counsellor, Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka met the IAEA Director General H.E. Mr. Yukiya Amano on 20 September 2017 in Vienna at the Vienna International Centre.


H.E the Ambassador of Sri Lanka congratulated Director General Yukiya Amano on his re-election in office for the third term.


Director General Amano stated that he wishes to visit Sri Lanka in March 2018. H.E the Ambassador of Sri Lanka in a response informed that Sri Lanka looks forward to the visit of DG Yukiya Amano to Sri Lanka in March next year.


Mr. Anil Ranjith, Director General, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Regulatory Council briefed the status of Additional Protocol to the Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement, and the developments on the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) and the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management & on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management its Amendment, and he sought assistance to have national workshops with IAEA assistance to educate stakeholders in this.


Mr. Jayawardhana, Chairman, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board briefed on the ongoing promotional activities and proposed projects and sought IAEA assistance to establish radiopharmaceutical production facility based on cyclotron in Sri Lanka. Further Mr. Jayawardena explored the opportunity of IAEA’s assistance to provide technical assistance through Tracer technology / isostope hydrology technique to explore quality drinking water resources in chronic kidney disease (CKD) prevalent areas in Sri Lanka.


The Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka
Vienna, Austria
25 September 2017

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Handing Over of Chairmanship of the Asia Pacific Group

After completion of a successful term as the Chairperson of the Asia Pacific Group, H.E. Mrs. Priyanee Wijesekara, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka in Vienna handed over the Asia Pacific Group Chairmanship to H.E. the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Royal Kingdom of Thailand on 11 July 2017 at the United Nations Headquarters in Vienna.

Prescription (Special provisions) Act No. 05 of 2016

The Prescription (Special Provisions) Act No. 05 of 2016 was brought into operation in April 2016 to provide special legal provisions for persons who were unable to institute court proceedings to recover their immovable property including land, due to the terrorist activities in Sri Lanka during the period from 1 May 1983 to 18 May 2009.

According to the Act, if any person who had a valid legal claim ( as rightful owner of the property) to any immovable property including land was a ‘disadvantaged person’ (the Act defines a" disadvantaged person' as a person who was unable to pursue his rights in a court in which he was by law enabled to pursue such rights, as a result of the circumstances which prevailed due to the activities of any militant terrorist group during the period commencing on May 1st, 1983 and ending on May 18th, 2009) such a person could claim his/her property despite it being possessed or occupied by another person who claims ownership through prescription.
Section 4 of the Act provides that a 'disadvantaged person' is entitled to benefit from the Act within two years after the date of operation. As the date of operation was 26 April 2016 (being the date of the Speaker's certification) the said stipulated time period expires on 26 April 2018.

Therefore, if any person is interested in reclaiming his/her/their property through the provisions of this Act, such claim ought to be brought before 26 April 2018.
Trilingual electronic copies of the Act are available under the following links:

Members of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka too are notified of the contents of this Act. If a person wishes to pursue legal action in terms of this Act, he/she could seek legal advice.

Statement by the Cabinet of Minister

On 13 June 2017, the Cabinet of Ministers adopted a Statement, directing law enforcement authorities and the Attorney General to take immediate action against instigators and perpetrators of violence and hate speech against religious and ethnic groups.

To read the full text of this Statement, please follow the relevant link for EnglishSinhala or Tamil language.

GOVERNMENT APPROVES HISTORIC NATIONAL RECONCILIATION POLICY

On 2 May 2017, in a historic move, the cabinet of Ministers of the Government of Sri Lanka approved Sri Lanka's first National Reconciliation Policy.

The process for developing the National Reconciliation Policy was initiated in September 2015 by the Office for National Unity & Reconciliation (ONUR) chaired by Former President Her Excellency Madam Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga.

After a one-year comprehensive consultation process with multiple stakeholders including Government officials, ministries, departments, members of provincial councils, civil society, academia, and experts and grass-roots activists, the National Reconciliation Policy was submitted by His Excellency President Maithripala Sirisena in September 2016 to Cabinet of Ministers for discussion. In his accompanying note to the Cabinet, His Excellency stated that the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) had drafted the National Policy in a "manner that reflects that reconciliation is a whole-of-government effort and a multi-stakeholder endeavour."

At this cabinet Meeting in September 2016, Hon Minister Mano Ganeshan, Minister of National Coexistence, Dialogue & Official Languages, requested a few amendments to the document. Hence, the cabinet directed the Secretary to the President to discuss these concerns with ONUR, who had prepared and drafted the National Policy on Reconciliation, and with Ministers and Secretaries of relevant Ministries and present a final version of the National Policy on Reconciliation. The Ministry of National Coexistence, Dialogue & Official Languages sent in amendments comprising paragraphs regards two matters, namely, language policy and coexistence. The rest of the original document as was prepared and drafted by ONUR was agreed to by the Ministry National Coexistence, Dialogue & Official Languages and other relevant Ministries.

Accordingly, ONUR prepared the final version of the National Policy on Reconciliation and it was this final version of the document prepared by ONUR that was adopted by the Government at the cabinet of Ministers' meeting held on 2 May 2016.

ONUR held further discussions and consultations with stakeholders and the revised final version of the National Reconciliation Policy& Coexistence was resubmitted as a joint cabinet
Memorandum by His Excellency President Maithripala Sirisena and Hon Mano Ganeshan, Minister of National Coexistence, Dialogue & Official Languages, to the cabinet of Ministers on 2 May 2017 for adoption.

The National Reconciliation Policy declares that will "serve as the State policy on reconciliation" and "provide direction to the process of national reconciliation in Sri Lanka." Further, it says that it will "provide a guiding framework to all stakeholders working on reconciliation in order to achieve coherence in reconciliation initiatives."

The National Policy on Reconciliation is set to fill a long-standing vacuum due to the absence of a consolidated National Policy on Reconciliation. The National Policy on Reconciliation will aim to satisfy the need of the country for an over-arching vision on reconciliation and a broad, coherent framework to steer and direct the process of national reconciliation. In this regard, it declares that, "Acknowledging that while several reconciliation initiatives are underway, there does not exist an expressed declared policy by the Government of Sri Lanka on the subject; hence this National Policy on Reconciliation aims to bridge this gap."

This National Reconciliation Policy has laid down a set of "Policy Principles" which it defines as "A set of actionable principles and long-term goals that will form the basis for making rules and guidelines, and to provide overall direction to planning and development for national reconciliation. These include Equality, Human Rights, Justice and the Rule of Law, Transitional Justice, Inclusivity and Diversity, Sustainable Development, Civic Consciousness and others. The National Reconciliation Policy also lays down guidelines for stakeholders and actors implementing reconciliation programs and has identified the following as critical to it, namely, Conflict Sensitivity, Cross-Cultural Awareness, Victim-Centeredness, Gender Responsiveness, Foresight and Innovation, Leadership and Sustainability, Efficiency and Effectiveness, Coordination and Complementarity and Clear and Consistent Communication.

The National Reconciliation Policy includes an Implementation Strategy which has stated as follows: "Mainstream the values defined in the National Policy on Reconciliation within government institutions and existing national initiatives through annual work plans; Develop a National Programme and Action Plan for Reconciliation; and Launch public awareness and education campaigns on the National Policy on Reconciliation and the National Programme and Action Plan on Reconciliation."

For further information and interaction regards the National Reconciliation Policy, you may contact Ms Salma Yusuf, Deputy Director, Office for National Unity & Reconciliation at dd.ppm(at)onur.gov.lk and salmayusuf(at)gmail.com.

The full text of the National Reconciliation Policy can be found here in EnglishSinhala and Tamil Language.

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