Embassy of Sri Lanka in Paris celebrates the 69 Anniversary of Independence on the theme of national unity and reconciliation
The Embassy of Sri Lanka in Paris celebrated the 69th Anniversary of the Independence on 4th February 2017 at Espace Saint Pierre in Paris with the participation of over 550 invitees from the Sri Lankan community representing all ethnicities.
(Religious dignitaries and members of the Sri Lankan community in the audience)
Staying true to the spirit of reconciliation, the national anthem was sung in both Sinhala and Tamil by two groups of students followed by a two minute silence for all Sri Lankans who have sacrificed their lives on behalf of the country. The traditional oil lamp was lit by Ambassador Tilak Ranaviraja and a group of children representing the four main ethnicities in Sri Lanka; Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim and Burgher. Religious dignitaries from all faiths invoked blessings on the President, Government and all Sri Lankans living all over the world and for durable peace in the country. As customary, the national day messages of President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and the Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera were read out by Ambassador Tilak Ranaviraja and members of the staff.
(Group of children singing the national anthem in Sinhala and Tamil)
(H.E. the Ambassador and children representing Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim and Burgher communities lighting the oil lamp)
Ambassador Ranaviraja in his remarks highlighted the importance of national unity for advancing meaningful reconciliation and economic development which are also the policy priorities of the Government. In this context, he invited the Sri Lankan community living in France to join in the development process of the country.
(H.E. Tilak Ranaviraja, Ambassador of Sri Lanka to France delivering his speech)
Cultural performances featuring different dancing traditions of the country to display its rich cultural heritage made the event more vibrant. Guests were treated to a traditional Sri Lankan meal consisting of rice and curry at the end of the event.
(Cultural troupe performing a traditional Kandian dance)
(Performance of a Tamil dance)
The Embassy of Sri Lanka
6th February 2017