AMBASSADOR SUBASINGHE ASKS SRI LANKANS IN
U.S. TO LEVERAGE THEIR CAPABILITY TOWARDS SERVICING THE
SRI LANKA - U.S. RELATIONSHIP IN ALL ITS DIMENSIONS
Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the U.S. Devinda R. Subasinghe called
upon all Sri Lankans resident in the US and US citizens with a
special interest in Sri Lanka, to increase their activities and
to leverage their capability towards servicing the Sri Lanka-US
relationship in all its dimensions. He said the Embassy proposed
to open an "ideas line" to hear their views and will
also commence a program to provide internships to qualified Sri
Lankan students at the Sri Lanka Embassy in Washington and the
Consul General's Office in Los Angeles.
The Ambassador made these observations when he addressed the
55th Independence Anniversary Celebrations of Sri Lanka, held
on Sunday 9th February at the Amphitheater of the Ronald Reagan
Building and International Trade Center in Washington D.C. The
ceremony organized by the Sri Lanka Embassy in Washington D.C.,
was attended by members of the Sri Lankan community of the Greater
Washington area, friends of Sri Lanka which included several former
U.S. Ambassadors to Sri Lanka and Sri Lankan Officials visiting
the US including Major General Parami Kulatunga and Secretary,
Ministry of Urban Public Utilities Ariyaratna Hewage.
The two hour ceremony, commenced with the unfurling of the Sri
Lanka flag to the strains of the national anthem sung by children
of the Embassy staff. The lighting of the traditional oil lamp
followed, amidst the singing of Jayamangala Gatha by the Sri Lanka
Youth Dance Troupe.
This was followed by multi-religious observances and prayers.
The Buddhist observances were led by the Ven. M. Dharmasiri Thera,
Chief Incumbant of the Washington Buddhist Vihara and the Ven.
K. Uparathana Thera, Chief Incumbant of the Wheaton International
Buddhist Center. Hindu prayers were recited by Rev. S Viswesvaiam,
Muslim prayers by Mr. Naseer Azeez and Christian prayers by Dr.
Later the Independence Day messages by President Chandrika Bandaranaike
Kumaratunga , Prime Minister Ranil Wicremasinghe and Foreign Minister
Tyronne Fernando were read by officers of the Embassy.
In his address, Ambassador Devinda R. Subasinghe outlined the
objectives towards which he with his staff would direct their
energies. First, to deepen and broaden the Sri Lanka-US relationship
in all its manifestations- diplomatic, political, security, economic
and arts and culture. Second, to elevate economic cooperation
between the two countries and secure greater trade and capital
market access for Sri Lanka in the US and a higher level of US
investment in Sri Lanka. Third, to increase access to World Bank
and IMF technical expertise and financial resources. Fourth, affording
the highest quality of consular and information services and in
adding value to the assets of the Embassy. In an open forum that
followed, the Ambassador responded to questions and suggestions
made by the gathering.
The event concluded with a cultural program, which featured dances
- 'Kethaka Mahima' and ' Suragana Ladun', performed by the Junior
and Senior dance troupes of the Ranga Kala Kavaya respectively,
choreographed and led by Devika Wimalakantha and a dance featuring
the ten divine incarnations of Lord Krishna, performed by Meera
Embassy of Sri Lanka
09 February 2003