Colombo, 21 May 2022 (TDI): Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka, G.L. Peiris, expressed the Sri Lankan Government’s concern and profound worry at the approval of a motion in the Canadian Parliament.

The Canadian Parliament approves the motion on the purported genocide of Tamils in Sri Lanka on May 18, 2022.

The Sri Lankan government has disclaimed the motion.

The Foreign Minister categorically disavowed the motion, calling its content “false”, in a meeting with the Acting High Commissioner of Canada in the country Amanda Strahan at the Foreign Ministry.

Secondly, he highlighted that its inaccurate substance is fundamentally inconsistent with and contradicts the Government of Canada’s position. He said earlier that Canada had taken a position that “it has not determined that there was genocide in Sri Lanka.”

Minister Peiris also stressed the importance of using technical phrases with legal meanings with levelheadedness and responsibility.

The Foreign Minister asked that the Canadian Government take necessary steps to remedy the motion’s fallacies, given the motion’s false and discriminatory nature.

Such behavior can also result in the unfavorable views of Sri Lankans about Canada.

The latter request was made in the context of Canada and Sri Lanka’s strong bilateral connections.

Further, he added that it is especially regrettable that the Canadian Parliament is taking such mistaken action at this time when the Sri Lankan people are facing significant hardships.

Lastly, the country is suffering an economic crisis, and so they need constructive involvement from the international community.

Response of the Acting High Commissioner of Canada:

Acting High Commissioner Strahan responded by pointing out that the House of Commons’ private members’ motion was non-binding and non-legislative.

She also promised to forward the contents of the démarche to Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Development for action.

Sri Lanka and Canada Diplomacy

Sri Lanka and Canada have a long history together. Both nations are Commonwealth founding members.

Since the 1950s, Canada has been a long-time development cooperation partner with Sri Lanka.

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