Sri Lanka leader set to meet Rody

The Philippine Star - - FRONT PAGE - By EDITH REGALADO and ALEXIS ROMERO

Sri Lanka Pres­i­dent Maithri­pala Sirisena is sched­uled to ar­rive in Manila to­day for a five-day state visit.

Pres­i­dent Duterte will re­ceive Sirisena in for­mal cer­e­monies at Mala­cañang to­mor­row. Sirisena and Duterte are ex­pected to hold bi­lat­eral dis­cus­sions that will fo­cus on ar­eas of mu­tual in­ter­est, in­clud­ing po­lit­i­cal, eco­nomic, agri­cul­tural, cul­tural and peo­ple-to-peo­ple en­gage­ment.

“The visit of the Pres­i­dent of Sri Lanka is of his­toric sig­nif­i­cance. It

will be the first by a Sri Lankan pres­i­dent serv­ing both as head of state and gov­ern­ment un­der Sri Lanka’s 1978 Con­sti­tu­tion,” pres­i­den­tial spokesman Sal­vador Panelo said.

While in the Philip­pines, Sirisena is also sched­uled to visit the Asian De­vel­op­ment Bank in Pasig City and the In­ter­na­tional Rice Re­search In­sti­tute in Los Baños, La­guna.

Sirisena is like­wise ex­pected to meet the Sri Lankan com­mu­nity in Manila.

Prior to Sirisena’s visit, Prime Min­is­ter Sir­i­mavo Ban­daranaike was the only other Sri Lankan leader to visit the Philip­pines, in 1976, since the es­tab­lish­ment of di­plo­matic re­la­tions be­tween the two coun­tries in 1961.

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