Remains of Sri Lankan Peacekeepers brought to the island

February 05, 2019

The mortal remains of the two Sri Lanka Army UN Peacekeepers were brought to the island on Monday (04 February). The coffins of Major H.W.D. Jayawickrama and Sergeant S.S. Wijekumara were received in a military parade by the Sri Lanka Army. State Minister of Defence Hon. Ruwan Wijewardene was also present at the Katunayake Airport to receive the bodies.

The UN flag draped coffins were formally handed over by the MINUSMA Force Commander, Lieutenant General Dennis Gyllisporre and other UN representatives to the Army Commander Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake. Later coffins were draped with the National flag and the vigilant troops in the ceremonial parade handed over the UN flag back to the MINUSMA Force Commander symbolizing the formal acceptance by the troop contributing country. Later the bodies were taken to the Negombo Hospital for post-mortem formalities.

Military funerals of the two fallen UN Peacekeepers would take place at their respective home towns in Polonnaruwa and Polpithigama in due course.

UN Resident Coordinator, Sri Lanka Ms. Hanaa Singer, senior Army officers and family members of the two personnel were also present at the solemn ceremony held to receive the caskets of the two Army personnel.

The two peacekeepers Captain H.W.D. Jayawickrama and Corporal S.S. Wijekumara, were killed in an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) explosion, when their WMZ convoy came under rebel attack, while engaged in Peacekeeping duties in Keerana area in Mali, last Friday (25). They have been posthumously promoted to their next ranks.