Geneva/Colombo, May 9 (): Tamara Manimekhalai Kunanayakam, a Tamil and Sri Lanka’s permanent representative to the United Nations in Geneva has been transferred from her current position to Cuba. This change in Ms Kunanayakam’s office comes into effect from July 1, 2012.
Mr Ravinatha Aryasinha, touted to be a ‘team player’ and currently the Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Belgium, Luxembourg and the European Union replaces Ms Kunanayakam as the new ambassador to UN.
An official message dated 7th May, 2012 was faxed to Ambassador Kunanayakam which informed her that she was being given notice of transfer as Ambassador to Cuba and that she should assume office in Cuba with effect from July 1, 2012. This transfer comes into force on the instructions of the Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, the fax stated, as quoted by the External Affairs ministry secretary, Mr.Karunatilake Amunugama.
This transfer order is believed to have been issued to Ms Kunanayakam without any ‘exchange of ideas’ between the President and the ambassador, according to sources. Only External Affairs Minister Gamini Lakshman Peiris held a telephonic discussion about the matter with her earlier and suggested she assumes office either in Brazil or Cuba from June 2012. Refusing to abide by the oral ‘order’, Ms Kunanayakan told Peiris that she was not in favour of giving up her post in Geneva in the present situation and move to Latin America.
Ms.Kunanayakam, armed with her rich and years of experience in UN matters had been of great assistance to Mahinda Rajapaksa in 1989 -’90.
In an earlier scenario of controversies’-ridden media that Ms Kunanayakam was ‘ready to go to Cuba’ and that ‘she was going to quit’, her transfer order from the Sri Lankan regime now comes in. News were also doing the rounds in media circles that she was the one responsible for the defeat faced by Sri Lanka at the UN. But, the glaring and the masked up fact is she was acting mainly on the instructions by the Sri Lankan President himself.