Colombo pounces on its own diplomats

[TamilNet, Friday, 11 September 2009, 07:34 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s ambassador in Japan, Jayantha Palipane is the latest victim of Colombo’s 'panicked restructuring' of its foreign service, journalistic circles in Colombo said Friday. The recall of the ambassador may look as a response to an incident at the Narita airport involving the prime minister of Sri Lanka, but it is only a pretext, according to the sources. SL President Mahinda Rajapaksa was making use of career diplomats and academics to paint a deceptive picture of his government before and during the war. But now the government, either not trusting its own diplomats or considering them a spent force, replaces them with military and political appointments in the style of some totalitarian regimes, the sources further said.

Mr. Jayantha Palipane is a senior career diplomat of nearly quarter a century of service.

Last Saturday, Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wikremanayake, who was on a tour to Japan, was kept waiting for 30 minutes at the Narita International Airport by Japanese officials and to his embarrassment was fingerprinted by them.

The ambassador was accused of ‘procedural delay’ for not arranging VIP treatment for the prime minister.

 

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