Dr. Palitha Kohona reappointed as Co-Chair of the UN Ad-hoc Working Group to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction.

The President of the General Assembly, Mr. Joseph Deiss, has reappointed Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Dr. Palitha Kohona, as the Co-Chair of the UN Ad-hoc Working Group on the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Martine Biological Diversity beyond Areas of National Jurisdiction.  Professor Liesbeth Lijnzaad, Legal Advisor, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands has been appointed as the other Co-Chair.  This Committee, after four years of negotiations, successfully produced a set of recommendations which were presented to the General Assembly last year.  It is expected that the Committee will continue to explore this complex subject with significant economic implications for member states with a view of making further recommendations to the GA in 2011.  It will meet from 31st May to 3rd June 2011 in New York. 

Dr. Kohona who possesses a PhD on International Economic Law from the University of Cambridge, UK, was the former Head of the UN Treaty Section.  From 2006, he occupied the position of Secretary-General of the Government Peace Secretariat, in Colombo and, subsequently, he was the Foreign Secretary of Sri Lanka till 2009.  Since September 2009 he has been the Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in New York. 

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