Pathfinder Foundation (PF), in association with the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran and in collaboration with the Strategic Council for Foreign Relations (SCFR) held a round-table conference on the theme ‘Iran and the Indian Ocean in the 21st Century’ recently.
The round-table held in Colombo was attended by Dr. Abdulreza Faraji Rad, Director General of the prestigious Iranian think-tank.
He discussed Iran’s role in security and development in the Indian Ocean. Dr. Mohsen Eslami, Assistant Professor of the Department of International Relations, of the Tarbiat Modares University of Tehran elaborated on the nuclear deal, Iran signed with China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States and Germany in 2015 that ended sanctions against Iran.
A fascinating story of Iran and Sri Lanka relations going back to over two millennia was unveiled by Luxman Siriwardena, Executive Director of the PF, while Admiral Dr. Jayanath Colombage, Director, Centre for Indo-Lanka Initiatives (CILI) of the Pathfinder Foundation discussed security issues relating to the Indian Ocean from the Sri Lankan perspective.
Another facet of Iran-Sri Lanka relations in the modern era was highlighted by Dr. Mohamed Shareef Asees, visiting lecturer of the University of Colombo.
Introductory remarks were made by Chairman, PF Bernard Goonetilleke and concluding remarks delivered by Lalith Weeratunga, Senior Fellow of PF. A lively discussion followed the presentations by the panelists including arrangements to promote tourism from Iran to Sri Lanka and vice versa.
The SCFR is a think tank and consultative body with a strategic approach in the field of foreign relations, established in 2006 on the directive of the Supreme Leader of Iran. Its main goals are to make macro decisions, opening new horizons in foreign relations, benefiting from the views of academia, formulate indicators to achieve the goals in foreign relations and communicate with like-minded institutions abroad.