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* Sri Lanka donates USD 25,000 and tea to Haiti relief
Fri, Jan 22, 2010, 08:35 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Jan 22, Colombo: Sri Lanka government today committed to donate 1,000 kilograms of tea to the quake devastated Haiti in addition to a financial package of US$ 25,000 pledged soon after the country was struck by an earthquake on January 12, Presidential Secretariat said in a statement.

A contingent of nearly 1,000 troops from the Army, Navy, Air Force, and the Police are in Haiti on the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH).

Sri Lankan peace keeping troops in Haiti are involved in the clearing of debris, the rescue operations and the provision of medical assistance to the earthquake victims.

Full text of the statement as follows:

On the instructions of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Sri Lanka committed today to donating 1000kgs of tea for the relief of the victims of the earthquake in Haiti. This donation is in addition to the financial pledge of US$25,000/- made by the Government of Sri Lanka to its counterpart in Haiti soon after the news of the earthquake which devastated that country on 12th January 2010, became known.

It may be recalled that President Mahinda Rajapaksa in his message of 15th January to the President of the Republic of Haiti, Ren‚ Garcia Pr‚val, had expressed his deep sadness upon learning of the devastation. President Rajapaksa went on to say "as a nation that was touched by a tragedy of similar magnitude five years ago, Sri Lanka can understand and feel the pain of your sorrow". He also mentioned "....I have been informed that the UN peacekeeping battalion from Sri Lanka is fully involved in the rescue efforts. Sri Lanka associates itself with the international community's efforts to support the people of Haiti at this hour of devastation".

Sri Lanka has indeed been for sometime now contributing to the peace and stability of Haiti by deploying at the request of the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), a contingent of almost 1000 personnel drawn from the Army, Navy, Air Force and the Police Service. The UN Headquarters in New York have briefed the authorities in Colombo that the efforts by the Sri Lanka Armed Forces and Police personnel include the clearing of debris, the carrying out of rescue operations and the provision of medical assistance to the earthquake victims.

The pledges of assistance and the efforts of Sri Lanka's contingent are a strong manifestation of the understanding and empathy conveyed by President Rajapaksa's message to the people of Haiti, at this time of sorrow and need.

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