Ambassador Haidari Calls on President Gotabaya Rajapaksa Following His Electoral Victory

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Colombo: - Ambassador M. Ashraf Haidari called on HE President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on December 12, 2019, following his recent electoral victory. The Ambassador conveyed to him the congratulatory letter and warm greetings of HE President Ashraf Ghani, following which they reviewed and discussed bilateral issues of mutual interest and concern for further cooperation.

In this light, the Ambassador briefed HE President Rajapaksa on the status of Afghanistan-Sri Lanka bilateral ties, noting the importance of implementing the MOUs and agreements signed by the two countries, as well as finalizing and signing the pending and proposed MOUs and agreements that cover such areas as political consultations; defense cooperation; connectivity for trade and investment; rural development and water management; skills development; as well as tourism. The Ambassador also briefed HE President Rajapaksa on his recent provincial visits, promoting the establishment of ties between Afghanistan-Sri Lanka provinces and major cities, including a sister-city relationship between Kabul and Kandy.

HE President Rajapaksa shared with Ambassador Haidari some of his country’s war-to-peace-transition experiences for lessons to be learned for Afghanistan’s continued efforts to end the war and achieve sustainable peace. The Ambassador welcomed this, which he said HE President Ghani had also discussed with Sri Lankan Ambassador to Afghanistan Gagan Bulathsinghala, expressing Afghanistan’s interest in learning relevant lessons from Sri Lanka in peacekeeping and peacebuilding processes.

Both sides agreed on the need to further expand bilateral relations, as Ambassador Haidari requested HE President Gotabaya to consider visiting Afghanistan whenever his schedule allows this year, which the President welcomed.

Read Ambassador Haidari's article on "Afghanistan-Sri Lanka: Natural Partners in Democracy and Development."

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