July 22, Colombo: Tanzania was extremely satisfied with the bilateral relations with Sri Lanka and looks forward to further strengthening those ties, Tanzanian Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Bernard K. Membe has said.
The Tanzanian Minister, who is on an official visit to Sri Lanka from July 20 -22, made this remark when he called on Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees yesterday (July 21) evening.
Membe congratulated Sri Lanka on the success of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2013 and told the President of the "fond memories" the Tanzanian delegation had from that visit to Sri Lanka.
President Rajapaksa thanked Tanzania for its participation in CHOGM 2013 and also for its continued support to Sri Lanka in international forums.
The Foreign Minister further said that what they saw when they arrived in Sri Lanka was vastly different to what the media reported, adding that even after the past eight months, he sees "significant changes."
The President and Foreign Minister Membe also spoke of the challenges countries face during post-war periods. Membe said a number of African nations are facing difficulties dealing with issues that arise after conflicts.
"You have made significant changes in humanitarianism, peace and stability, and the economy," Membe said about Sri Lanka's post-war experience.
While conveying greetings of Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete, Foreign Minister Membe said Tanzania was extremely satisfied with the bilateral relations with Sri Lanka and looks forward to further strengthening those ties.
Several high-level officials from the Tanzanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation accompanied Membe.
The Tanzanian Minister met his Sri Lankan counterpart Minister G. L. Peiris before the meeting with the President.
Following the Ministers' meeting the two sides signed three Memoranda of Understandings (MoUs) on sustainable Coconut Research and Development between two nations.
Sri Lanka also inked an agreement on Bilateral Political Consultations with a view to increase strong political relationships between the two countries. Another agreement on the Establishment of a Joint Commission for Cooperation was also signed by the two foreign ministers.
Minister of External Affairs Prof. G.L Peiris, Secretary to the Ministry of External Affairs Kshenuka Seneviratne and Sri Lanka's Ambassador in Uganda (who is also accredited to Tanzania) V. Kananathan were present for the meeting with the President.
(Photo by Nishanka de Silva)