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Restrictions on issuing passports to Sri Lankans lifted

1 June 2016 07:34 pm - 7     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The Government has issued a circular yesterday ending the restrictive practice of preventing the issuance of passports to Sri Lankan citizens’ resident abroad,who were compelled to leave Sri Lanka due to political persecution.

Issuing a statement, the Foreign Ministry said that the previous government issued instruction to all Sri Lankan Missions abroad in March 2011, to refrain from issuing passports to those who sought asylum due to political persecution.

“This circular constituted a serious violation of our citizen’s rights under the Constitution and under the many human rights conventions to which Sri Lanka has become a party over the years. It has also caused immense hardship and difficulties to many Sri Lankans, who were forced to leave the country as a result of their struggle against authoritarian rule,” it said.

The statement said that the Government has renewed its commitment to upholding citizen’s rights and the rule of law.

“Freedom of movement and impartial treatment of our citizens, irrespective of their political beliefs, will be secured for all our citizens. Furthermore, as a result of the good governance and reconciliation efforts of the current government, many Sri Lankans living abroad have expressed an interest in visiting and investing in Sri Lanka. Ending this restrictive practice will further enable our citizens overseas to visit and return to Sri Lanka and thereby contribute to the country’s development and reconciliation process,” it said.

“Therefore, the Government has directed the Controller-General, Department ‎of Immigration and Emigration, to issue a circular ending this draconian practice and restore the procedure followed since Independence of enabling every Sri Lankan citizen living abroad to obtain a passport,” the statement said.

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  Comments - 7

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  • yahapala Thursday, 02 June 2016 12:04 PM

    Very good move from Good governess and Yahapalanaya.

    DillonDP Thursday, 02 June 2016 03:16 PM

    hmmmm i dont think a single fly would come to hell

    kumara Thursday, 02 June 2016 06:37 PM

    This is burning issue for Diaspora in Europe. It would have been better if goverment work same speed local citizen issues as well.

    Lalindra Perera Thursday, 02 June 2016 07:03 PM

    They have fooled the host govts in receiving refugee status.This must be withdrawn and they should now be sent back

    sathees Thursday, 02 June 2016 07:13 PM

    in the first place this should have not implemented. All those left Sri Lanka is not terrorist. Even Velu discarded them as lost generation. there are many journalist in exile due to gov.

    TONY Thursday, 02 June 2016 12:05 AM

    IS THIS RULE APPLICABLE ONLY TO THOSE WHO ARE ABROAD SEEKING ASYLUM? CAN THOSE WORKING OVERSEAS WHOSE PASSPORTS HAS TO BE RENEWED GET THEIR NEW PASSPORTS FROM THE EMBASSY??

    ahamed Thursday, 02 June 2016 09:34 PM

    i think others can renew their passport abroad even before they implemented this new policy. so i dont think it will remain same. you dont have to worry


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