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Seoul envoy praises Lankan teachers for promoting Korean language

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On December 23, 2022, the Korean Embassy and the National Institute of Education (NIE) hosted the completion ceremony of the online capacity-building program of the Korean language for the second time at the Hilton Hotel, Colombo.The Korean Embassy said in a news release that this ceremony was held in honour and appreciation of the 55 Lankan teachers who completed the online capacity-building program for the Korean language in this country.

Present on this occasion were Korean Ambassador Santhush Woonjin JEONG, Minister of Education Susil Premajayantha and the Director General of the National Institute of Education Dr. Sunil Nawaratne.

Welcoming the guests and academia, Nawaratne appreciated the Korean Embassy’s continuous support and endorsement of timely initiatives to expand Korean language education in Sri Lanka, the release said.He stated, “This program was initiated in July 2020 and has now completed its second year. Last year, 58 teachers received training under it to educate advanced level students in the Korean language. In 2022, 55 teachers completed this program with great success.

“As the Education Minister once said, the Korean language is a passport to employability. Currently, more than 25,000 Lankans are employed in Korea. I am sure the Korean language will be useful in enhancing future employability for Sri Lankans.”

He elaborated on ways this program would be helpful to facilitate the decision to incorporate the Korean language as a foreign language in advanced-level classes. Ambassador Santhush delivering his congratulatory remarks to the teachers, commended their consistent efforts and determination to surpass the difficulties this year.

“In celebration of the 45th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Korea and Sri Lanka this year, the Korean Embassy has made numerous efforts to consolidate bilateral ties especially in cultural and educational cooperation.

“In 2023, the Korean language will be introduced as a university entrance examination subject. That will be another opportunity to bring our two countries closer together. I congratulate all the Korean language teachers who have completed this program and appreciate their hard work and commitment amid many challenges like the limited supply of necessary infrastructure.

“Today, your dedication and hard work have culminated in producing wonderful results. Congratulations to all teachers who are graduating from this program. I am confident that this program helped develop your Korean language skills. I hope you contribute to a better world and a brighter future for Sri Lanka.”

Premajayantha stated that Korea-Sri Lanka ties have expanded steadily in numerous areas like labour, trade, renewable energy and education cooperation. He emphasized the support received from the Embassy of the Republic of Korea.



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President orders probe into notification issued by Department of Immigration and Emigration

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It has been reported that President Wickremesinghe ordered an investigation into the notification issued by the Department of Immigration and Emigration requesting all  Russian and Ukrainian tourists to leave the country within 14 days.

According to the President’s Media Division (PMD), the relevant notification was issued without prior approval from the Cabinet of Ministers.

The decision had reportedly been taken as certain foreign tourists are running illegal businesses in the country.

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Contentious Chinese research vessel docks in Maldives

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Xiang Yang Hong 03 has previously visited Indian Ocean on several other occasions

A contentious Chinese research ship reached the Maldives on Thursday in the latest sign of the archipelago’s diplomatic reorientation towards Beijing and away from its traditional benefactor India.

Local residents said they had spotted China’s Xiang Yang Hong 3 at the Thilafushi industrial port near the capital Male.The 100-metre-long (328-foot) vessel was at an anchorage near Male on Thursday evening, according to the website Marinetraffic.

The Maldives’ pro-Beijing government said earlier the vessel was docking for a port call to rotate crew and take on supplies, on the condition that it would not conduct “research” while in its territorial waters.

Media reports in India had suggested that the vessel was conducting surveillance for Beijing.

India is suspicious of China’s increasing presence in the Indian Ocean and its influence in Sri Lanka and the Maldives, which are strategically placed halfway along key east-west international shipping routes.Relations between Male and New Delhi have chilled since pro-China President Mohamed Muizzu won elections last year.

Muizzu has asked India to withdraw 89 security personnel based in the Maldives to operate reconnaissance aircraft by March 15.But the president has also insisted he does not want to upend ties with New Delhi by replacing Indian troops with Chinese forces.

Sri Lanka refused entry to Xiang Yang Hong 3 after two other port calls from Chinese vessels since 2022 raised objections from India.That included the ship Yuan Wang 5, which specializes in spacecraft tracking and which New Delhi described as a spy ship. (AFP)

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MP Harsha in Australia as “Special visitor”

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Harsha de Silva

Opposition MP and Chairman of the Committee on Public Finance (COPF) Harsha de Silva is currently in Australia as a special visitor.

Taking to ‘X’, the Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MP said he had embarked on a nine-day visit on an invitation extended by the Government of Australia.

“My engagements with policymakers, academics, scientists and investment managers began in Melbourne and will continue in Adelaide and then public officials and politicians in Canberra,” he added.

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