Sri Lanka leader set to meet Duterte


President Duterte will receive Sirisena in formal ceremonies at Malacañang tomorrow

MANILA, Philippines — Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena is scheduled to arrive in Manila today for a five-day state visit.

President Duterte will receive Sirisena in formal ceremonies at Malacañang tomorrow.

Sirisena and Duterte are expected to hold bilateral discussions that will focus on areas of mutual interest, including political, economic, agricultural, cultural and people-to-people engagement.

“The visit of the President of Sri Lanka is of historic significance. It will be the first by a Sri Lankan president serving both as head of state and government under Sri Lanka’s 1978 Constitution,” presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said.

While in the Philippines, Sirisena is also scheduled to visit the Asian Development Bank in Pasig City and the International Rice Research Institute in Los Baños, Laguna.

Sirisena is likewise expected to meet the Sri Lankan community in Manila.

Prior to Sirisena’s visit, Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike was the only other Sri Lankan leader to visit the Philippines, in 1976, since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1961.

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