Bangladesh to support Sri Lanka hosting Commonwealth leaders meeting in 2013

Oct 29, Perth: Bangladesh has pledged to support Sri Lanka to host the next Commonwealth leaders meeting in 2013 in Colombo.

The Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has given this assurance to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa when the two leaders met Friday (28) at the ongoing 22nd Commonwealth Heads of Governments Meeting (CHOGM) 2011 in Perth Australia.

President Rajapaksa and the Bangladeshi Premier held bilateral talks following the inauguration ceremony of the CHOGM. The two leaders focused attention on enhancing the mutual relationship between the two countries.

Bangladesh Foreign Minister Dr. Dipu Moni, Sri Lankan Minister of External Affairs, Prof G. L. Peiris and the Sri Lankan High Commissioner in Australia, Admiral (Retd.) Thisara Samarasinghe were also present at the discussions.

The President also met with the Prime Minister of Singapore Li Hine Loom yesterday. The two leaders focused on international trade and investment. They also discussed enhancing economic ties between the two countries. Minister Peiris, Parliamentarian Sajin Vaas Gunawardena, Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga and High Commissioner Thisara Samarasinghe participated in the discussions.

The leaders of 54 former British colonies, including Sri Lanka’s President Mahinda Rajapaksa have gathered in the West Australian city for a three-day summit to discuss building national and global resilience and to address pressing challenges at multiple levels.

Sri Lanka is to host the 23rd CHOGM in 2013 but some Western nations, especially Canada, alleging human rights abuses are threatening to boycott the summit if it is held in Sri Lanka.

President Rajapaksa on Thursday addressing the Commonwealth Business Forum invited the delegates to come to Colombo to attend the summit.

“Come to Sri Lanka in 2013 when the next CHOGM will be held in Colombo, I firmly believe that it will be a memorable experience for you,” he said.

(Photos by Sudath Silva)

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