Prime Minister asserts isolation not the answer to contain virus

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa says isolation is not the answer to contain the coronavirus.

In his speech at the G20 Interfaith Forum in Bologna, Italy, the Prime Minister said that while it may be legitimate for countries to close their borders temporarily to contain the virus, isolation is not the answer.

“One of the realities of the world in which we live, is the free movement of goods, services and people across national frontiers. Migration in search of a better life is challenged by conditions prevailing today, but employment opportunities on an equitable basis must continue to be available freely,” he said.

He said that the grave heath crisis which the world is experiencing at this time, serves to underline the bonds which unite all adding that COVID-19 makes no distinction among religions, nationalities and civilizations.

“It strikes a deadly blow at all humanity. In order to survive the pandemic and resume our lives once more, international cooperation needs to be strengthened. Vaccines and other protection, made possible by modern medicine, must be available across the globe, with firm arrangements in place for less affluent nations to be assisted by international organizations and by countries with stronger economies. It is a battle that has to be won, not by some, but by all,” he said.

The Prime Minister further noted that extremist ideology, and violence associated with it, represent one of the most serious challenges of our time.

“It is appropriate to recall the tragic events of 09/11, exactly twenty years ago, and to share our deep sense of grief with the families of victims of this outrage and, indeed, with all humankind. This is a reminder of the need for eternal vigilance against all forms of terrorist action, whoever be the offenders and whatever be their professed aims and purposes,” he added.

The Prime Minister also said that reconciliation is a critical need of our time and that conflicts and escalating tensions are all too evident around us.

“Peace and stability come from healthy relationships with all who live in our countries, including those with whom we have deep disagreements. Here, again, our religion teaches us that hatred is not conquered by hatred but by love alone. Rather than dwell on grievances derived from the past, we must focus on the present, the need for harmony with points of view different from our own, and the inspiring new frontier which awaits us all if we forge the urgently needed links of brotherhood and understanding,” he said.

The Prime Minister said that the G20 Interfaith Forum, which has been a regular event over the last seven years, presents a rare opportunity for intercultural dialogue. (Colombo Gazette)

3 COMMENTS

  1. ‘Migration in search of a better life is challenged by conditions prevailing today, but employment opportunities on an equitable basis must continue to be available freely’ – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

    Jawaharlal Nehru and Muhammad Ali Jinnah were fighting for their positions, not for South Asians. Otherwise, they would have easily identified the divisions, religious ideologies, caste systems, and gender issues. From Nehru to the Rajapaksa leadership all about having a position and increasing their wealth at the expense of people. The West made China a world factory, but China did not change its system. In contrast, South Asian leaders will do anything to destroy the country if they have a position to increase their wealth at the expense of billions of people. In Sri Lanka, the Rajapaksa family and their advisors are no different from the corrupt Indian political leaders. The South Asian leaders will continue to play religious, race, and language cards to create divisions to keep the people occupied, in order to hide incompetency leadership. Above all, the leaders will continue to pamper the people’s laziness and dishonesty through human rights and religious freedom to keep the people’s votes.

    The current leaders cannot make it happen; South Asia needs a revolution.
    The West did more than ripping off and dividing the region before giving independence. It embedded democracy and encouraged religious belief for the people to indulge laziness, so South Asia’s biggest human resources will not be utilised. I have visited Northern Sri Lanka and seen the reality. More than 50% of the people do nothing but living on the diasporas’ money. The government workers work only a few hours a day. The education system is corrupt. The school teachers do little as possible at schools to push the students to seek tuition classes, so the teachers can make extra money by running tuition classes. The education system supposes to encourage honesty and hard work, but students are learning to cheat by watching teachers’ dishonesty. Ironically, the people never fail to go to temples or churches, because sitting in temples and churches is easier than doing honest work to earn their living. They simply indulging their laziness and dishonesty in the name of democracy and religious freedom.

  2. ‘Migration in search of a better life is challenged by conditions prevailing today, but employment opportunities on an equitable basis must continue to be available freely’ – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

    Jawaharlal Nehru and Muhammad Ali Jinnah were fighting for their positions, not for South Asians. Otherwise, they would have easily identified the divisions, religious ideologies, caste systems, and gender issues. From Nehru to the Rajapaksa leadership all about having a position and increasing their wealth at the expense of people. The West made China a world factory, but China did not change its system. In contrast, South Asian leaders will do anything to destroy the country if they have a position to increase their wealth at the expense of billions of people. In Sri Lanka, the Rajapaksa family and their advisors are no different from the corrupt Indian political leaders. The South Asian leaders will continue to play religious, race, and language cards to create divisions to keep the people occupied, in order to hide incompetency leadership. Above all, the leaders will continue to pamper the people’s laziness and dishonesty through human rights and religious freedom to keep the people’s votes.

    The current leaders cannot make it happen; South Asia needs a revolution.
    The West did more than ripping off and dividing the region before giving independence. It embedded democracy and encouraged religious belief for the people to indulge laziness, so South Asia’s biggest human resources will not be utilised. I have visited Northern Sri Lanka and seen the reality. More than 50% of the people do nothing but living on the diasporas’ money. The government workers work only a few hours a day. The education system is corrupt. The school teachers do little as possible at schools to push the students to seek tuition classes, so the teachers can make extra money by running tuition classes. The education system supposes to encourage honesty and hard work, but students are learning to cheat by watching teachers’ dishonesty. Ironically, the people never fail to go to temples or churches, because sitting in temples and churches is easier than doing honest work to earn their living. They simply indulging their laziness and dishonesty in the name of democracy and religious freedom.

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