President Ranil Wickremesinghe stressed that Sri Lanka will not support any work that hinders the unity of Asia.
The President revealed this while participating in the ceremony held yesterday (10) afternoon to mark the 50th Anniversary of the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH), Colombo, which is the first international conference hall, built in Asia.
The President pointed out that there are many differences between the Asian geopolitics and the politics of the Pacific region and that we should recognize those differences and work to preserve peace and stability.
Highlighting that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) plays an important role, President Wickremesinghe underscored the need to ensure that ASEAN is further strengthened in the coming decades.
"The ASEAN outlook is one which also emphasizes the fact that while the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean are two different, distinct oceans, they are interconnected now, that is of value, because the geopolitics the Indian Ocean is quite different from Asia Pacific. As far as we are concerned, we have been free of the great power rivalry so far. We should not allow that to come into the Indian Ocean," the President said.
President Wickremesinghe emphasized that in order to advance Sri Lanka as a country with a strong economy in the next decades, Sri Lanka can be taken forward by utilizing the non-aligned policy, the ‘Panchaseela’ and the Asian policy.
"Those general facts are still valid today and said that this Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall is a good example that can be pointed out regarding the unity of Asia," he added.
A coffee table book written on the history of the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall was also presented to the President while a commemorative stamp worth Rs.25 was also issued to mark the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the BMICH.