(LANKAPUVATH | COLOMBO) – Five major friendship associations working towards enhancing people-to-people diplomacy between Sri Lanka and China organized a symposium yesterday in Colombo to welcome His Excellency Lin Songtian, President of the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, who is on an official visit to Sri Lanka.

Officials representing the five friendship associations namely, Sri Lanka – China Friendship Association, Sri Lanka China Society, Association for Sri Lanka-China Social and Cultural Cooperation, Sri Lanka China Journalists’ Forum, and Sri Lanka-China Buddhist Friendship Association, jointly organized the event.

“I was born in extreme poverty where rice was a luxury. Only potatoes were available for our all meals. At the same time, we came to Sri Lanka (Ceylon) to learn how to open our economy,” Ambassador Lin Songtian recalled his childhood during the speech.

He says that China is proud of the fact that Sri Lanka has an ancient civilization like China.

“We always unite as one. We always think as one, therefore, China will always support Sri Lanka to develop, as a friend and partner. I visited the Lotus Tower and toured the Colombo Port City, and it is inspiring as it is the hope this country, and it is also giving hope for us,” he said.

Addressing the event, the President of Sri Lanka China Journalists’ Forum, Mr Nalin Aponso commanded the inspiring speech of the His Excellency Lin Songtian adding that, a “significant numbers of journalists have already had the opportunities to visit China and learn about the latest developments in the field of journalism.”

“Our bilateral cooperation between Sri Lanka and China is flourishing day by day. It is a matter of pride that this sincere friendship has been strengthened, despite some bogus accusations and criticisms through various false propagandas,” Mr Aponso added.

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