28th January 2019 19:16:06 Hours
Ms. Hanaa Singer, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Sri Lanka, the designated representative of the UN Secretary General called on Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander of the Army this afternoon (28) at the Army Headquarters to extend her deepest sympathies and condolences on the tragic deaths of two Sri Lankan Peacekeepers in the Mali contingent (MINUSMA) a few days ago.
She, during the discussions assured the Commander of the Army that she would help in whatever the way possible to expedite the compensation process for both victims and do everything in her capacity to alleviate the sorrow of both bereaved families.
Condemning the dastardly act in Mali, the UN Resident Representative told the Commander of the Army that the UN Secretary General was deeply moved by the loss of both Sri Lankan Peacekeepers. She also stated that she would be at the Colombo airport to receive the remains and issue a special condolence message to be read out at the funeral.
In addition, Ms. Hanaa Singer said that she would visit bereaved families on Thursday (31) and be present at the funerals, together with her officials in the Colombo office.
Lieutenant General Senanayake thanking her for UN concerns explained to her the funeral arrangements that have been planned by the Army and respective Regimental Headquarters.
The meeting was attended by the Secretary to the visiting UN Resident Coordinator, Major General Ruwan Kulathunga, Colonel of the Regiment, Sri Lanka Light Infantry and Brigadier Prathap Thilakaratne, Director Overseas Operations at the Army Headquarters.
Captain H.W.D Jayawickrama of 11 Sri Lanka Light Infantry from Polonnaruwa and Corporal S.S Wijekumara of 1 Mechanized Infantry Regiment from Thalakolawewa, Polpithigama of the Sri Lankan Army Contingent in Mali laid down their lives on Friday (25) following an explosion while performing their UN Peacekeeping Mission duties around 6.30 a.m. in Keerana area after their WMZ convoy was attacked by a rebel group using an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). Three more Sri Lankan Peacekeepers sustained injuries and were admitted to the Level 2 Hospital at Gao in Mali.