He said that divisions in society were becoming deeper along religious and ethnic lines, freedom of speech and expression were curtailed, and fear and intimidation pervaded society.
“Our nation which had been a prominent and respected member of the international community since Independence, including in the United Nations, abandoned her natural foreign policy of engagement, and chose instead, to follow a policy of antagonising traditional friends and partners, and isolated itself from the world community,” he said, speaking at the International Institute for Middle-East and Balkan Studies (IFIMES) in Slovenia.
The Foreign Minister said that the rainbow coalition of the opposition scored a decisive victory on the 8th of January, on a platform promising far reaching democratic and constitutional reforms.
He said the people of Sri Lanka reasserted their commitment to democracy by dislodging an emerging dictatorship through non-violence.
“Not stopping at that, the people voted once again at the Parliamentary Election in August last year to uphold the same values and norms. Most importantly, for the first time in Sri Lanka’s history, with the support of the people we have formed a National Unity Government, bringing together the two main rival political parties in the country, the Sri Lanka Freedom Party led by President Maithripala Sirisena, and the United National Party led by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe,” he said.
The Minister said the unprecedented move has heralded a new culture of consensual politics, providing the much needed political and policy stability in Sri Lanka to undertake far reaching reform and important decisions in the long-term interest of Sri Lanka. (Colombo Gazette)