Government urged to discuss lifting army chief’s US travel ban

Government urged to discuss lifting army chief’s US travel ban

Government urged to discuss lifting army chief’s US travel ban

Written by Staff Writer

23 Oct, 2020 | 12:58 pm

COLOMBO (News1st): Opposition leader Sajith Premadasa has urged the government to discuss lifting the US travel ban on Sri Lanka’s army commander during the US State Secretary’s visit to the country.

“…discuss this matter and obtain a statement from him (the US State Secretary) about lifting the travel ban,” Premadasa said in Parliament on Friday.

The US had imposed a travel ban on Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva, following his appointment as army commander under the current government, over alleged human rights violations.

“…this ban was imposed upon the betrayal of our war heroes by the previous government in Geneva,” foreign minister Dinesh Gunawardana said in response to the opposition leader’s suggestion.

Gunawardana added that the opposition leader should have raised his concerns when the foreign minister of the previous government, in which Premadasa was a minister, had betrayed the country’s soldiers.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is expected to arrive in the country late this month.

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