The Embassy of Sri Lanka celebrated the 72nd anniversary of independence with the participation of religious dignitaries, Sri Lankan community living in Turkey and Georgia and Honorary Consul of Sri Lanka in Turkey on 4th February at the chancery premises. Ambassador M Rizvi Hassen hoisted the national flag amidst beating of maghul bera and followed the signing of national anthem.

The Embassy for the first time after establishment of the Mission in Ankara conducted the multi religious observances during the Independence day celebration at the chancery. On the invitation of the Ambassador Venerable Katuwana Siddhaththa Thero, Chief Incumbent of Shakyamuni Viharaya travelled from Rome to conduct the Buddhist religious observances and Mr. Ankit Tiwari, Prof. Mehmet Akif Koc, Rev. Fr. Seraphin Ngoie Kazadi conducted the Hindu, Islam and Catholic prayers. The Ambassador and the Embassy staff read the Independence Day messages of His Excellency Gotabaya Rajapaksa, President of Sri Lanka, Hon. Mahinda Rajapaksa, Prime Minister of Sri Lanka and Hon. Dinesh Gunawardena, Minister of Foreign Relations of Sri Lanka.

During the brief remarks the Ambassador noted the strong and longstanding relationship between Sri Lankan and Turkey and thanked the President of Turkey and Government of the Turkey for the goodwill extended to Sri Lanka. The Ambassador also expressed his determination to enhance trade, investment, tourism and cultural ties and commitment to assist Sri Lankans living in Turkey, Ukraine and Georgia thorough an efficient network to reach them. At the conclusion of the event Ambassador planted an Olive tree at the chancery premises to mark the anniversary of the Independence.

The Embassy also organized a reception to celebrate anniversary of Independence on 6th of February at Swiss Hotel, Ankara. The members of Turkey- Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Association, Turkish bureaucrats, Diplomatic Corp, heads of media institutions, business chambers, business personalities and popular Turkish artists and sportsmen attended the event. The Deputy Speaker of the Parliament of Turkey, Levente Gok and Mr. Reha Denemec, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of National Education of Turkey attended as chief guest and guest honour.  On the evening of 4th February, as a gesture for Sri Lanka to showcase solidarity and friendship towards people of Sri Lanka, Cankaya Municipality and the senior management of Atakule Tower, in Ankara carried a message of greetings lighted with Sri Lanka national flag on the Atakule Tower and similar gesture was also extended by the Istanbul Mayoralty and Galata Tower management by displaying message of greetings through a laser light on the historic Galata Tower in Istanbul.

Embassy of Sri Lanka
7th February 2020