Japanese embassy refuses visa to civil society delegation

[TamilNet, Saturday, 07 June 2003, 16:51 GMT]
Three member delegation of the North -East and South civil society invited to participate in the Japan donors conference by the International Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR), a non-governmental organization based in Tokyo was refused visa by the Japanese Embassy in Colombo, one of the members of the delegation Mr.T.Mahasivam said Saturday.

The other two members of the delegation were Ms Ramani Muttetuwagama and Mr.Aruz, representative of the Jaffna displaced Muslims Association, sources said.

In the invitation to Sri Lankan civil delegation members, one of the Under-Secretary General of the IMADR Mr.Ryo Onoyama said, "In the capacity of Under Secretary General of IMADR, I am writing this letter to request you for your participation, together with IMADR representatives, in the Tokyo Conference on Reconstruction and Development of Sri Lanka scheduled to be held on June 8. I also would like to request you to participate in series of meetings in preparation for the above conference and meeting hosted by IMADR together with other NGOs and groups representing the civil society in Japan."

The IMADR Under Secretary General further states in his letter, " the Tokyo conference is a very important opportunity for the international community to assist Sri Lanka in the process of peace, reconstruction and development. In this regard, participation in, and inputs to, the Conference by representatives from civil society of Sri Lanka is crucially important. We would like to discuss with you, as a representative of the civil society of Sri Lanka, how effectively we could give inputs in the Conference."

The IMADR Under Secretary General added in the invitation to the Sri Lankan civil society delegation members that "All necessary cost incurring from your travel which includes the airfare of your round-trip ticket from and to Sri Lanka, accommodation and travel in Japan will be borne by Forum-Asia, a Thailand based non governmental organization . For detailed schedule, please refer to the attached itinerary."

When the members of the Sri Lankan civil society delegation approached the Colombo Japanese embassy its officials told them to come and collect the visas later. When they went as requested they were told they were unable to issue visa, Ceylon Tamil Teachers' Union General Secretary Mr.Mahasivam said.

 

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