2nd Lead (Adds photo, background)

Australian High Commissioner visits Jaffna

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 July 2004, 16:43 GMT]
Mr.David Binns, High Commissioner for Australia in Sri Lanka Thursday morning paid a surprise visit to Jaffna, sources in Jaffna said. Accompanied by the First Secretary, Mr.Binn arrived at Palaly main military air base by a special aircraft and later held discussion with the Jaffna District Secretary and Government Agent Mr.S.Pathmanathan and local heads of government departments, secretariat sources said.

David BinnsMr.David Binns briefed the Jaffna civil officials about the future contributions of his country in implementing welfare projects in the peninsula.

He inquired from the Jaffna civil authorities about the problems confronting them in bringing normalcy to the peninsula after the signing of the ceasefire agreement by the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), sources said.

Later he visited the renovated Jaffna Municipal Council Library, which was set on fire in 1981 Sinhala thugs brought to Jaffna by the then Sri Lanka Government.

He donated a consignment of valuable books to the library on behalf of his government.

Jaffna Municipal Commissioner and other officials attended the event, council sources said.

Mr Binns is a senior career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Since joining the Department in 1983, he has held a range of positions in Canberra, including as Director of the East Asia Analytical Unit from 1994-96 and Director of Defence and Intelligence Policy from 1999-2000.

Born in Sydney in 1957, Mr Binns was educated at Macquarie University and Sydney University and holds Bachelors Degrees in Arts and Economics. He is married with one son and one daughter.

 

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