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Pakistan seeks to strengthen ties with Sri Lanka despite human rights concerns

Photo of Pakistan's Foreign Minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi,

Following the appointment of reappointment of Dinesh Gunawardena as Sri Lanka’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, congratulated the Minister on his successful reappointment and called for a strengthening of ties between Pakistan and Sri Lanka, despite human rights concerns.

On Twitter, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister stated:

I congratulate @DCRGunawardena on his reappointment as Minister for Foreign Relations of #SriLanka. Looking forward to working closely to further strengthen cooperation between Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

— Shah Mahmood Qureshi (@SMQureshiPTI) August 13, 2020

This comes despite concerns over Sri Lanka’s human rights record and increasing calls for sanctions against high profile Sri Lankan officials.

In February of this year, Gunawardena withdrew the country from the co-sponsored UN Resolution which pledged for the promotion of “reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka”.

Several groups have raised concerns over Sri Lanka’s increasingly authoritarian direction which has been worsened since the landslide victory which granted the Rajapaksas a two-thirds majority and enables them to amend Sri Lanka’s constitution.

Read more from the Colombo Gazette.


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