Dubai refuses to handover Udayanga, Lanka to send a team

The authorities in Dubai are refusing to handover Sri Lanka’s former Ambassador to Russia Udayanga Weeratunga who was arrested last month.

Sources told The Sunday Leader that diplomatic efforts are underway to secure Weeratunga’s transfer to Sri Lanka but the efforts have so far failed.

Weeratunga was detained in Abu Dhabi following his arrest in Dubai late last month.

The authorities in Dubai had arrested Weeratunga based on investigations and submissions made by the Police Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID).

An Interpol warrant had been issued for Weeratunga’s arrest over ongoing investigations into the controversial MiG aircraft deal.

The FCID later began discussions with the Dubai authorities with regard to handing the ex-diplomat over to the Sri Lankan authorities.

Earlier the Dubai police detained Weeratunga on 4th February at the Dubai International Airport or questioning while he was in transit to travel to the United States.

However, a special team comprising officers from the FCID, Criminal Investigation Division (CID), Foreign Ministry, Attorney Generals’ Department and Department of Immigration and Emigration sent to Dubai to extradite the fugitive ex-diplomat based on a warrant obtained from the Colombo Fort Magistrate had to return empty-handed since he had been released by the Dubai police.

When contacted by The Sunday Leader, the Minister of Law and Order Ranjith Madduma Bandara said that a team is preparing to travel to Dubai to have more talks with the authorities to bring back Weeratunga to Sri Lanka.