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Country is steering towards development of Peace and Harmony - State Minister

Country is steering towards development of Peace and Harmony - State Minister

  • We strengthen the security to face any challenge

  • March towards harmony, equality, peace and prosperity

  • Secure seas safeguarding the Indian Ocean and Sea Lanes of Communication are vital for Sri Lanka's security

Country is on a steady path towards development of peace and harmony. The government is determined to overcome any obstacle against the march towards harmony, equality, peace and prosperity. Moreover, the government will not compromise the security of the country at any cost. Our endeavour is to strengthen the security of the country in-order-to face any challenge that may come towards us, said the State Minister of Defence Hon. Ruwan Wijewardene.

He also reaffirmed that, secure seas while safeguarding the Indian Ocean and sea lanes of communication are vital for Sri Lanka's security. Supplementing the Blue Water capability of the SL Navy and the consolidation of the SL Coast Guard are areas of concern by the government, he also said.

State Minister Wijewardene expressed these sentiments while delivering keynote speech at the inaugural 'Master of Arts in International Relations' (MAIR) programme (2016) at the Senate Hall, University of Colombo yesterday (29th Jan).

State Minister Wijewardene graced the inaugural session as the Chief Guest at the invitation of the Vice Chancellor, Senior Prof. Lakshman Dissanayake.

The welcome address was delivered by the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and the Coordinator of the MAIR programme Prof. Nayani Melegoda.

Further Speaking to the beginners of MAIR he explicated that, one of the most important sea lanes of communication, as well as the sea lanes of trade runs just south of Sri Lanka. Over 200 ships transit our waters daily at the Southern tip carrying energy to the countries such as China, Korea and Japan and reciprocal traffic on the other way. The Indian Ocean has also gained increasing prominence in the current era as a very high proportion of the world's sea born trade takes place across the Indian Ocean, he also explained.

Quoting a statement of renowned late Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan, State Minister said that, 'Whoever attains maritime supremacy in the Indian Ocean would be a prominent player on the international scene.

Elaborating on the Asia's busiest water ways and the existence of key Straits, Minister Wijewardene said that, these every traffic areas play a globally important role in the transportation of energy, resources, food materials and industrial products. To ensure smooth and stable marine transit in this booming economic region, coastal countries need to proactively tackle various issues such as piracy, maritime disasters, environmental preservations, smuggling, illegal immigration and territorial disputes, he also noted.

He added that, principle conditions affecting the sea power of nations are primarily their geographical position, their size and extent of coast line, the quantity of their sea born trade, threats to it, maritime ambitions of their neighbours, and finally the number and determination of their population and the understanding and resolve of their leaders and government.

Paying emphasis to the maritime threats he said that, Asian Oceans have been successful in naval cooperation towards suppressing piracy. Correspondingly speaking on drug trafficking he revealed an observation of a substantial growth and urged that there is an urgent need of a more comprehensive strategy to prevent the trend prior-to further escalate.

Recalling on the recent visits made by high profile dignitaries including Head of Stats and State Secretaries he stated that, it was because of our government's foreign policy and the growing importance of this region for the stability of economies of the countries starting from West to East.

The Chief Guest expressed his good wishes to the scholars to be successful in the programme of study.

Vice Chancellor Senior Prof. Dissanayake presented a memento to the State Minister of Defence Hon. Ruwan Wijewardene to mark the occasion.

Senior Lecturers including Senior Professor in English Neloufer De Mel, Acting Head of the Department of International Relations Dr. Maneesha Wanasinghe, Defence Ministry Officials, Students and a large gathering of distinguished invitees were present at the event.

     

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