Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Iran, Lanka for global action to combat terror

Iran and Sri Lanka have condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and emphasized the need for enhanced international cooperation to eliminate this global menace following bilateral talks between the two sides, the Foreign Ministry said.

A joint statement issued at the end of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's visit to Sri Lanka said: "The Iranian side expressed its support for the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka and welcomed the positive political steps taken to end the conflict through negotiations, leading to a durable settlement, acceptable to all the people of Sri Lanka.

Iranian President Dr. Ahmadinejad held wide-ranging discussions with President Mahinda Rajapaksa, attended by Ministers and senior officials of both sides. The discussions which took place in a cordial atmosphere, were detailed and substantive, covering issues of bilateral, regional and global interest.

Both Presidents, while noting with satisfaction the progress achieved in bilateral relations, stressed their firm commitment to further enhance mutual cooperation in the political, economic, trade, cultural, educational, scientific and technological fields. The discussions reaffirmed the close and friendly ties that exist between Sri Lanka and Iran.

The two Presidents briefed each other on issues of common interest and current developments in their respective countries.

The Sri Lankan side supported the peaceful use of nuclear energy by Iran, within the framework of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The two sides confirmed the full and non-discriminatory implementation of Article IV of the NPT on peaceful nuclear co-operation. The two sides reiterated the importance of global nuclear disarmament, particularly the need for the nuclear powers to destroy their nuclear weapons, based on the decisions of the relevant international meetings.

The two sides expressed their deep concern over the violence against the Palestinian people in the Palestinian territories and recognized the inalienable rights and the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people at the highest level, and will continue to express their solidarity with the Palestinian people.

Both sides also expressed the hope that the differences among the different groups in Palestine will be resolved amicably.

The two sides, stressing the need for the consolidation of national unity and understanding, peaceful co-existence and the preservation of the stability, security and peace in Lebanon, supported initiatives among different Lebanese parties through consensus and the participation of all Lebanese political groups in the process of deciding all issues of concern, as the only way out of the current crisis in Lebanon.

Both sides emphasized the need for the preservation of the territorial integrity and unity of Iraq and the participation of all Iraqi groups in the political process and expressed their support for the efforts of the elected Iraqi government to restore security and stability in Iraq.

The two sides expressed concern over the escalation of insecurity and instability in Afghanistan, and supported, as a matter of priority, the endeavour by the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan for the restoration of peace and stability.

The two sides underscored the potential for expansion of bilateral economic co-operation, which would greatly strengthen the existing bonds of friendship and co-operation between the two countries and be conducive to the common progress and prosperity of the peoples of Iran and Sri Lanka, inter alia, by encouraging the private sectors of both countries to invest in each other.

Recalling the visit of President Rajapaksa, President of Sri Lanka to Iran in November 2007, and the Agreements and MOUs reached between the two countries in the areas of power supply and irrigation as well as the expansion of the oil refinery facility in Sri Lanka, both sides expressed their deep satisfaction at the ceremonial inauguration of the Uma Oya multi purpose development project and the Sapugaskanda oil refinery project respectively, with the assistance of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, during the visit of the President of Iran to Sri Lanka.

Both sides also noted with satisfaction, the conclusion several MOUs and Agreements during the visit of the President of Iran to Sri Lanka.

Courtesy: Daily News

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