Saturday, April 26, 2008

Senior U.S. State Department Official Visits Sri Lanka

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs Don Camp visited Colombo April 20-22 as part of the U.S. Government's regular, ongoing consultations with the Sri Lankan Government, US embassy in Colombo said in a statement today.

According to the statement to, Mr. Camp During his visit met with senior Government of Sri Lanka officials, including Minister of Foreign Affairs Rohitha Bogollagama, Minister of Disaster Management and Human Rights Mahinda Samarasinghe, Secretary to the Ministry of Defense Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, and Secretary to the Ministry of Justice Suhada Gamalath. He also met with leading political figures, civil society leaders, and business representatives, statement further revealed.

The statement also cited Mr. Camp having characterizing his meetings as "useful and frank, in the way of long time friends".

"We value the dialogue we continue to have with the government, as well as the lines of communication we maintain with Sri Lanka's political, business, and civil society leaders. Many of the issues we discuss are difficult ones, particularly on human rights and the resolution of the conflict, but the U.S. will remain engaged in the hope of seeing progress." ,the statement further cited.

Mr. Camp also welcomed initial measures to demobilize TMVP child soldiers, urged progress on human rights, and stressed the importance of free and fair elections in the East, without violence or intimidation, the statement said.

Mr. Camp's first Foreign Service posting was to the U.S. Embassy in Colombo in the late 1970s, and he served here again briefly as Charg‚ d'Affaires in 2003.

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