Sri Lanka, Australia to establish joint working group

Sri Lanka and Australia have decided to establish a joint working group to address the people smuggling issues, the External Affairs Ministry said.

In a statement regarding the visit to Sri Lanka by Australian Foreign Minister Senator Bob Carr, the External Affairs Ministry said that the joint working group will be led by Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Martin Bowles, Secretary of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship of the Government of Australia.

The joint working group will be inaugurated by the Australian Foreign Minister and Sri Lankan Foreign Minister on Monday.

“The Joint Working Group will particularly address the current issues of illegal migration, people smuggling and law enforcement,” the Foreign Ministry statement said.

Australian Foreign Minister Senator Bob Carr, who begins his visit to Sri Lanka today, will call on President Mahinda Rajapaksa and have discussions with Prof. G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs, Basil Rajapaksa, Minister of Economic Development and Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary of Defense and Urban Development.