Sri Lanka, Trkiye have enjoyed steady relations for centuries, says ambassador

ANKARA: Sri Lankan Ambassador to Trkiye, Saranya Hasanthi Urugodawatte Dissanayake, said Friday that the two countries have had steady relations for hundreds of years, especially in difficult times.

“For many Turkish people, Sri Lanka may feel like a distant land; but the two nations have had steady relations over the centuries particularly at times of difficulties,” she said in a statement. “Trkiye came forward to support Sri Lanka when the coastal areas of the country were ravaged by the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, with the construction of 450 housing units and many other forms of assistance whenever Sri Lanka was faced with the wrath of extreme weather events.’

Turning to the strong diplomatic ties between the two countries, Dissanayake said both nations share a long-standing relationship dating centuries to the Ancient Sea Silk Route.

“Since gaining independence in 1948, Trkiye has been a steadfast diplomatic partner, with reciprocal embassies established in Ankara and Colombo,” said Dissanayake.

The two countries celebrated the 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations in 2023, marking a significant milestone coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the founding of Trkiye and Sri Lanka’s 75th anniversary of independence.

Special commemorative stamps were issued to honor the historic occasion in Ankara and Colombo on Dec. 8.

“The operation of direct flights by Turkish Airlines between Istanbul and Colombo, starting on 30th October 2023, has opened up new vistas in bilateral cooperation, especially in the tourism sector,” she said.

Source: Anadolu Agency