Sri Lanka to soon name new envoy to India

 Sri Lanka has recalled all non-career diplomats serving as heads of missions abroad who had held their posts before January except the High Commissioner to India with a new envoy to be named shortly.

Colombo: Sri Lanka has recalled all non-career diplomats serving as heads of missions abroad who had held their posts before January except the High Commissioner to India with a new envoy to be named shortly.

The new High Commissioner to India has been identified, however the current envoy will remain in New Delhi until his successor has been approved by the parliamentary committee on high posts, foreign ministry spokesperson Mahishini Colonne said.

She said that all non-career heads of missions who had held the posts before January 8 have been recalled and except the High Commissioner to India, will have vacated their posts by the end of June.

This will be the first Sri Lankan High Commissioner to be appointed to India under President Maithripala Sirisena's government.

His predecessor Mahinda Rajapaksa had faced criticism for politicising the foreign service by selecting a high percentage of political appointees over career diplomats.

Colonne said Sri Lanka has 63 missions overseas including consulates and the recall has created 40 vacant heads of mission posts.

Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera had said that the new government would make diplomatic appointments on a 65 to 35 per cent basis between career officers and political appointments.

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