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The Ministry of National Integration and Reconciliation is one of the key Ministries that comes under His Excellency Maithripala Sirisena the President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. The H.E the President serves as the Minister in charge of the Ministry of National Integration and Reconciliation. The Ministry believes that a harmonious society is fundamental for a prosperous nation therefore, multi- ethnic and multi-religious communities and the religious and cultural diversities are recognized as a source of strength in which mutual respect and dignity of all people to achieve durable peace and prosperity prevails.

The vision of the Ministry is to respect and value diversity, promote integration, facilitate reconciliation and ensure non-recurrence of conflict to build a pluralistic and inclusive society. The Ministry has formulated a national policy on reconciliation which is translated into a reconciliation actin plan with clearly defined roadmap for the multi-ethnic and religious groups to live with dignity and self- respect.

Under H.E the President’s directive the Ministry has declared “The National Integration and Reconciliation week“ which falls from 8th to 14th  the January every year. The Ministry has also established District Reconciliation Committees (DRCs) based on a Cabinet decision initiated by H.E the President to resolve religious and ethnic tensions at the local level. These DRCs comprise of inter religious leaders whom we believe could bring about a change to achieve, unity, harmony, brotherhood and sustainable peace. 

As a Ministry responsible for National reconciliation action has been taken to implement Integration Friendly Schools Programme, Integration and Reconciliation Friendly Sunday Religious Schools Programme, Integration friendly Media Programme (Peace Journalism), Reconciliation Focused Youth Programmes, Reconciliation Focused Economic Empowerment Programme. The Ministry has also initiated to construct 50,000 brick and mortar type housing programme and read development projects in all conflict affected Northern and Eastern Districts. The Reconciliation Focused Economic Empowerment Project aims to support Northern and Eastern community with livelihood and economic empowerment and it will contribute to establish strong business linkage between North and South. The ministry also undertakes healing programmes covering livelihood support, rainwater harvesting, anchorages facilities, economic and social infrastructure with a view to address the trauma and to heal the wounds of the conflict.

The Ministry also focuses special attention on refugee returnees, internally displaced persons, war widows, women headed families, families with missing persons, differently abled and socially integrated combatants. The Ministry very closely works with President’s Office, Prime Minister’s Office, Secretariat for Co-ordination Reconciliation Mechanism, Office for National Unity and Reconciliation  and other line ministries and agencies, development partners including UNDP, UNICEF, EU, GIZ and others, Civil Society Organizations such as National Peace Council, Asia Foundation, EQUITAS, Centre for Humanitarian Affairs, USAID, UNHABITAT, Government of India, Australian High Commission, Chamber of Commerce, Centre for Ethnic Studies, world Concerns etc. to promote national integration and reconciliation.

I wish to specially express my sincere appreciation for H.E the President for his strategic guidance, Hon. Prime Minister for his advice and support and State Minister Hon.A.H.M.Fowzie for his active involvement and Madam Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge, Chairperson Office for National Unity and Reconciliation for her advice and the Northern and Eastern Provinces Development Committee for their close guidance and support. I also wish to thank all the District Secretaries and Divisional Secretaries closely working with us to implement the programmes efficiently and effectively. Further, I also wish to thank the Parliamentary Sectorial Oversight committee Hon. Mavai Senathiraja and the members, Hon. Members of the Parliament and the member of the Provincial Council for their continuous interaction.  

 

V.Sivagnanasothy 

Secretary 

Ministry of National Integration & Reconciliation

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