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* Ambassador to Sri Lanka not recalled, relations normal, Saudi Arabia clarifies
Thu, Feb 28, 2013, 09:56 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Feb 28, Colombo: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia today denied media reports that it recalled its Ambassador to Sri Lanka over the execution of a Sri Lankan housemaid for the alleged killing of an infant under her care in 2005.

Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs officials said yesterday the Saudi Ambassador to Sri Lanka Abdulaziz Bin Abdurrahman Al-Jammaz was summoned for consultation and not recalled permanently.

"The Saudi ambassador has not been recalled permanently, but asked to come to Riyadh for consultations,…he is still the ambassador to Sri Lanka," deputy foreign minister for protocol affairs Alauddin A. Alaskary has told Arab News yesterday.

The official has said that the date when he would be returning to Colombo has not been decided yet but he will be going soon.

Chargé d'affaires at Sri Lankan Embassy in Riyadh D. S. Gammanpila has said that the relations between Riyadh and Colombo are normal despite Sri Lanka recalling its Ambassador to Riyadh Ahmed Jawad in a show of dissent over the execution of the housemaid Rizana Nafeek on January 09.

Gammanpila has said that the Sri Lankan workers are still being recruited for the Kingdom and the bilateral relations strained after Nafeek's execution are normal now.

A report released by the Association of Licensed Foreign Employment Agencies (ALFEA) has said that the Sri Lankan government has suspended sending workers and maids to Saudi Arabia until the Saudi authorities provide a proper insurance scheme to the Sri Lankan employees. The Sri Lankan official however has refuted the employment agency's report. "There are no problems now," Gammanpila has said.

Sri Lanka appointed a new Ambassador to the Kingdom recently. The External Affairs Ministry named Vadivel Krishnamurthy who was previously posted as the Deputy High Commissioner of India for Saudi Arabia.

The Sri Lankan diplomat has said that the mission in Riyadh has not been informed about the date of the arrival of ambassador-designate yet.



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