Funerals of Sri Lankan Peacekeepers held with military honours
[February 08 2019]
The last rites
of the two Sri Lankan
Peacekeepers were conducted
amidst full military honours on
Thursday (07 February).
According to Army media, the
funerals of late Major H.W.D
Jayawickrama of 11 Sri Lanka
Light Infantry (SLLI) of
Polonnaruwa and Sergeant S.S
Wijekumara of 1 Mechanized
Infantry Regiment (MIR) of
Thalakolawewa, Polpithigama were
held at the Abhayapura General
Cemetery in Polonnaruwa and Rawa
Ela General Cemetery in
Polpithigama, respectively last
After the completion of religious observances, a
military salute was presented to both Sri Lankan Army personnel who had
laid down their lives for world peace as UN peacekeepers in Mali.
Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake first called
at late Sergeant S.S Wijekumara's home at Polpithigama before attending
the funeral of late Major Jayawickrama in Polonnaruwa.
Representative Army Officers read out the Part - I
Orders issued by Major General Ruwan Kulathunga, Colonel of the
Regiment, SLLI on behalf of late Major Jayawickrama and Lieutenant
Colonel W.D.S Gamage, Commanding Officer of 1 MIR on behalf of fallen
Sergeant Wijekumara in accordance with military formalities and
traditions at both funerals.
HE the President Maithripala Sirisena, HE the
President of the Republic of Mali, Ibrahim Boubacar Ke‹ta, Speaker, UN
Secretary General, UN Resident Coordinator in Sri Lanka, MINUSMA Force
Commander, UN Security Council authorities and several local and
international agencies had extended their condolences on the death of
the two Sri Lankan peacekeepers.
Captain H.W.D Jayawickrama and Corporal S.S Wijekumara
of the Sri Lankan Army UN Peacekeeping Contingent in Mali were killed in
an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) explosion, when their convoy came
under rebel attack, while engaged in Peacekeeping duties in Keerana area
in Mali, last month (25 January). Their mortal remains were brought to
the country on Monday (04). Three other Sri Lankan Peacekeepers had also
sustained injuries in the attack and were admitted to the Level 2
Hospital at Gao in Mali.
Both Army personnel were posthumously promoted their
next ranks of Major and Sergeant respectively.
Army Chief of Staff, senior officers, UN representatives and a large
number of people were present at both funerals.