Sri Lanka’s Neutral Foreign Policy

 Following article adapted from the address by the President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in the general debate of the 75th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in September 2020

I extend my deepest condolences to all those who have lost loved ones due to the pandemic and express deep appreciation to the frontline healthcare and essential workers, both in Sri Lanka and globally, for their dedication and selfless commitment. The theme of this year’s General Debate is timely, and echoes the importance of solidarity across national borders in alleviating the effects of COVID-19.

We commend the efforts taken by the UN to respond to this challenge, including the “COVID 19 Global Humanitarian Response Plan” and the establishment of the United Nations COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund. Sri Lanka supports the extensive work being carried out by the WHO, which has played a critical role in shaping the global response to the pandemic. The WHO now must seek to facilitate universal access to a COVID-19 vaccine, once developed, which should be designated as a basic public good and be affordable and obtainable by all.

As a country proud of her long-standing democratic traditions, the Government of Sri Lanka has witnessed two free and fair elections, where I as the President and my Government were elected with overwhelming majorities. The resounding mandates received at both the Presidential and Parliamentary elections have enabled the formation of a strong Government, dedicated to building a prosperous nation. At a time when even the most powerful countries in the world were facing substantial challenges in the wake of COVID – 19 pandemic, Sri Lanka was able to successfully face the challenge.

Click here to read the full text of this essay in Volume 1 Issue 1 of Lanka Courier 

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