US Assistant Secretary to visit Sri Lanka next month

By Easwaran Rutnam 

A top US official is to visit Sri Lanka next month for talks which will mainly focus on human rights, trade and investment. 

US Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu said that he will be visiting Sri Lanka in March.

This is his first visit to Sri Lanka since being appointed to the post in September last year.

Donald Lu told a group of journalists during a teleconference yesterday (Thursday) that he will be visiting Bangladesh and Sri Lanka next month.

“I have had the opportunity to travel out to South Asia in the fall, to India, Nepal, and the Maldives, and I’ll be traveling next month to Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. I have seen tremendous opportunity in this region for American engagement. These countries can see the engagement of America’s adversaries, and they’re anxious to see what we bring to the table in terms of our economic, security, and climate engagement,” he said.

While he did not mention the focus areas during his visit to Sri Lanka, US officials said that human rights and bilateral trade will top the list.

During a discussion with the Tamil National Alliance and Global Tamil Forum in Washington last November, Donald Lu had underscored that human rights was central to US foreign policy on Sri Lanka.

His visit will take place after the new US Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Julie Chung assumes duties in Colombo.

The US has been supporting Sri Lanka with vaccines to fight Covid and has also partnered with the country to fight terrorism.

During the visit to Sri Lanka Donald Lu is also expected to emphasis on the US policy for a free and open Indo-Pacific.  (Courtesy Daily Mirror)

3 COMMENTS

  1. Or, is this a US State Department tactic ? Keeping the GoSL in their comfort zone by giving them “familiar” faces to deal with. The mind boggles.

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