United Nations International Day of Peacekeepers’ was marked with a wreath laying ceremony in the Meditation Area of the General Assembly building and a medal awarding ceremony at the General Assembly Hall at the United Nations. This solemn occasion was graced by the Secretary General, Under Secretary Generals, Permenant Representatives, including HE Dr Rohan Perera of Sri Lanka, UN Officials, Military and Police Advisers of Permanent Missions.
During the medal awarding ceremony, the first Captain Mbaye Diagne (Senegal) Medal for Exceptional Courage was posthumously awarded to his family and Dag Hammarskjold Medalwas posthumously awarded to 97 Peacekeepers from 37 countries, for those who have lost their lives during service with a Peacekeeping Operation under the operational control and authority of the United Nations.
The late Sri Lanka Air Force Coporal Herath M K Bandara was awarded the medal posthumously and Miltary Adviser of Sri Lanka to the United Nations Major General Ubaya Medawela accepted the medal on behalf of the late corporal’s family from Mr Herve Ludsous, Under Secretary General for Peacekeeping Operations.
During a seminar Organized by Challengers Forum on 20 Years of Cooperation in Support of UN Peace Operations held in New York, Major General Ubaya Medawela , Minister (Military Adviser) met General Micael Bydén, Supreme Commander of the Swedish Armed Forces along with Colonel Claes Naréus, Military Adviser of Sweden.During this brief meeting both discussed the future peacekeeping deployment and capacity building, which are of interest to Sri Lanka and Sweden.
The Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in New York, with the participation of its staff, conducted a special ceremony at the Mission premises on 4th January 2016, to commence the new work year.
During the event, after the lighting of the oil lamp and the singing of the national anthem, the Mission staff took the Oath of Public Service to affirm their commitment to serving the people. Deputy Permanent Representative and Charge d’Affaires H.E. Mr. Sabarullah Khan delivered a brief speech, reaffirming the commitment and unwavering contributions of the staff in all efforts to be undertaken during this year so that the needs of the Sri Lankan community and Sri Lanka as a whole are duly met.
The ceremony was concluded with a traditional Sri Lankan breakfast.