The 66th Anniversary of the Independence of Sri Lanka was celebrated in Dubai, Vienna, Israel & Tokyo, amidst a large gathering of Sri Lankans and well wishers.
The Consulate General of Sri Lanka in Dubai organized the 66th Independence Day Anniversary on 4th of February 2014 in the Mission premises.
The country’s national flag was hosted by Abdul Raheem, Consul General of Sri Lanka in Dubai. This was followed by singing of the national anthem, lighting of the traditional oil lamp, and reading messages of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne and External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris, which were read in English, Tamil and Sinhala.
Two minutes of silence was also observed in honor of national heroes. Buddhist, Hindu, Islam and Christian religious dignitaries including Ven. Harispaththuwe Shaddah Vimuktha Thero, Kurukkal Devanand Mahadeva, Moulavi Riaz, Rev Dr. Ruwan Palapathwala blessed the Nation and the people of Sri Lanka in Dubai.
The 66th National Day of Sri Lanka was also celebrated in Vienna by the Sri Lankan community and friends of Sri Lanka in Austria as well as the representatives of the diplomatic corps, and business and academia on 04th February 2014.
An official ceremony took place with the hoisting of the national flag and the singing of national anthem in the early morning of 04th February. This was followed by the blessings invoked on the country and its people by the religious leaders representing the four religions in Sri Lanka.
The members of the Sri Lankan community and friends of Sri Lanka in Vienna, joined by the staff of the Embassy of Sri Lanka participated in this event, which was addressed by Ambassador A.L.A. Azeez. Reading out the message of President Mahinda Rajapaksa on the occasion of the 66th National Day, Ambassador Azeez outlined the progress achieved by the Government in addressing the multi-faceted challenges and in leading the country towards prosperity.
The Anniversary of the National day was celebrated with an elegant ceremony in Israel amidst a large gathering of Sri Lankans and Israeli well wishers.
The event commenced with the hoisting of the National Flag by Sarath Wijesinghe, Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Israel which was thereafter followed by the lighting of the traditional Oil lamp and the multi- faith religious observances led by Ven. Karavilakotuwe Dhammathilake Thero, Rev. Sacher Aboud of St. Anthony’s Church and Rabbi Mendi Crombie of the Jewish faith. The Buddhist and Christian Clergy and the Rabbi invoked blessings on the President and the country.
Another ceremony was held on Tuesday, 4th February 2014 at the Reiyukai Hall in Tokyo. The event which was organized by the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Tokyo was held amidst a large gathering of Sri Lankan expatriates in Japan.
The Independence Day celebrations took place in Tokyo with religious observances made by Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim and Christian clergy.
A special cultural dance performance was performed by a 3-member dance troupe comprising Sri Lankan students in Japan.