The Russian President made the comments after accepting the credentials from Dayan Jayatilleka as Sri Lanka’s new Ambassador to Russia yesterday (Thursday). “I would like to note that in September we signed a bilateral intergovernmental agreement on military cooperation,” he added. Dr. Jayatilleka presented his Letters of Credence in a solemn ceremony bringing together the newly-appointed Ambassadors of 23 countries in the magnificent St. Alexandre’s Hall of the Kremlin.The credentials were received by President Putin, accompanied by Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Yury Ushakov, Foreign Policy Advisor to the Russian President. Russian President Vladimir Putin has called for closer cooperation with Sri Lanka.Putin said that Russia maintains traditionally friendly relations with Sri Lanka and is interested in closer trade and economic cooperation, including in fishery, agriculture and tourism. “Today we need diplomacy to play an active and constructive role, to use the power of words, negotiations and compromise to make a tangible contribution to overcoming the current difficulties in international affairs and searching for responses to new challenges and threats,” the Russian President said after meeting the new envoys.He said Russia is dedicated to a peaceful policy and progressively carries out a responsible course in foreign policy.“As a permanent member of the Security Council, Russia defends the basic principles stipulated in the UN Charter: sovereignty and equality of states and non-interference in their domestic affairs. We stand against using politically motivated protectionism measures and sidestepping the norms of international law,” the Ambassador said. He said that Russia’s active participation in global affairs and openness to mutually beneficial partnerships with all countries and regions are motivated by our main national interest: to create the most favourable conditions possible for Russia to develop dynamically, to achieve ambitious social and economic goals and improve our citizens’ quality of life. Putin said that Russians want to live in peace and they want Russia to be a strong and independent state. (Colombo Gazette)
ST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC):The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) is refuting a suggestion that it forced veteran cricketer Shivnarine Chanderpaul to retire from international cricket so that he can play in the inaugural Masters Cricket League (MCL) T20 currently under way in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.Chanderpaul is claiming that a No Objection Certificate, issued to him by the WICB, contained a threatening clause, which forced him to call time on his international career.The WICB issued NOCs to four players, including Chanderpaul, to facilitate their participation in the MCL, a tournament approved by the International Cricket Council for players who have retired from international cricket.”I was given a No Objection Certificate by WICB with a clause in it that I retire on the 23rd,” Chanderpaul told ESPNcricinfo.”If I didn’t announce my retirement they would have taken it back.”However, the WICB said the NOCs were granted on the basis that the players were “well aware of their decisions to retire from international cricket and, therefore, allowing them to be eligible for participation in the inaugural tournament”.The other players who were granted NOCs are Tino Best, Krishmar Santokie and Fidel Edwards.The WICB statement made little reference to Best, Santokie and Edwards, but listed Chanderpaul’s series of low scores in his last Test matches.”Kindly advise by 4:30 p.m. Eastern Caribbean Time on Saturday, January 23, 2016 in writing if you have retired from International cricket,” stated the note from the Operations department of the WICB to the players.”Should you not indicate by the deadline we will be forced to revoke any NOC issued for the tournament.”The 41-year-old was sacked last May after playing against England in the Caribbean, where he scored 46 and 13 runs in the first Test, one and seven in the second and 25 and 0 in the third.Chanderpaul is expected to turn out for leaders Guyana Jaguars when the WICB Professional Cricket League resumes next week.