As political crisis continues in Sri Lanka UK Minister considers visit

As the political crisis continues in Sri Lanka, a British Minister has said he may visit Sri Lanka next year.

UK Minister of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Mark Field told the UK Parliament that it is vital that all sides refrain from violence and make efforts to resolve the situation peacefully and as soon as possible, the Tamil Guardian reported.

“Our High Commissioner to Sri Lanka continues to meet regularly with all political parties, and has expressed our concern at the behaviour of some MPs in disrupting Parliamentary proceedings. We have stressed the importance of MPs allowing Parliament to do its job,” Field said.

Field’s comments came in response to a question posed by the Labour MP, Keith Vaz who asked if he had plans to visit the island.

“I last visited Sri Lanka in October, before the current crisis, where I met Foreign Minister Marapana and other Ministers. We discussed the range of our bilateral interests and I urged more progress on human rights and reconciliation. I also met the leader of the Tamil National Alliance, as well as human rights and civil society activists. I have continued to urge the Sri Lankan government to fully implement its commitments to the UN Human Rights Council. I plan to visit in 2019,” the UK Minister said.

He also said that he has received regular representations from the Tamil community on a range of their interests and concerns.

“I last met with the APPG for Tamil’s including some representatives from the Tamil community on 3 December to discuss the current political situation. Foreign Office staff also regularly meet with Tamil representatives, both in Sri Lanka and the UK.” (Colombo Gazette)



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