The Embassy of Sri Lanka in Abu Dhabi marked the 75th Anniversary of Sri Lanka’s Independence by conducting the flag hoisting ceremony on 04 February 2023 at the Embassy premises and by hosting a diplomatic reception on 06 February 2023 at Hotel Shangri La – Abu Dhabi.
On 04 February, the event commenced with the hoisting of the National Flag by His Excellency Udaya Indrarathna, Ambassador of Sri Lanka to the United Arab Emirates, amidst the rhythm of magulbera, followed by singing of the National Anthem and Jayamangala Gatha by the students of the Abu Dhabi Dhamma School.
Following the traditional rituals, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and Catholic religious’ observances were conducted by the Ven. priest of Sri Lankaramaya in Dubai and other religious dignitaries to invoke blessings upon all Sri Lankans living across the world as well as to the motherland.
In line with the vision of the UAE President, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to mark 2023 – ‘The year of sustainability’, the Embassy launched a tree plantation campaign under the sub theme “A Greener Tomorrow” and the first plant was planted by the Ambassador at the Embassy premises.
Apart from the tree plantation ceremony, a blood donation camp under the theme of “Heart to Heart”, was conducted at the Embassy premises in collaboration with the ‘Sahana’- Sri Lanka Welfare Association. The event was attended by nearly 200 Sri Lankan expats and the end of the ceremony came to a close with the serving of traditional Sri Lankan cuisine.
On 06 February, the Embassy hosted a diplomatic reception for nearly 250 guests including senior officials of the Foreign Ministry of UAE, diplomatic corps, leading businessmen, and journalists at hotel Shangri La, Abu Dhabi. The event commenced by lighting the Sri Lankan traditional oil lamp. This Excellency Ahmed bin Ali Al Sayegh, State Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mr. Khalid Al Amry, Ambassador of UAE to Sri Lanka and other prominent Emirati Officials graced the occasion with their participation.
Delivering the welcome speech, Ambassador Uadaya Indrarathna recalled the strong bilateral relations between the two countries and expressed Sri Lanka’s commitment to further enhance the friendly relations to reach the next level of cooperation.
The ‘Channa Upuli Performing Arts Foundation’ entertained the audience with a fusion of traditional and modern Sri Lankan dancing throughout the event. A wide spread of authentic Sri Lankan cuisine including live stations demonstrating the preparation of hoppers, pittu, string hoppers and kotthu, brought an unique experience to the participants.
The event concluded with a sense of admiration towards the vibrant nature of Sri Lanka’s culture, traditions and its heritage.
Sri Lanka Embassy
Abu Dhabi, UAE
09 February 2023