Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Sri Lanka)

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Ministry of Foreign Affairs
විදේශ කටයුතු අමාත්‍යාංශය
வெளிநாட்டலுவல்கள் அமைச்சு
Emblem of Sri Lanka.svg
Agency overview
Preceding agency
JurisdictionDemocratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
HeadquartersRepublic Building, Colombo 1
6°56′15″N 79°50′40″E / 6.937517°N 79.844308°E / 6.937517; 79.844308
Ministers responsible
Agency executive
Child agencies
Coat of arms of Sri Lanka, showing a lion holding a sword in its right forepaw surrounded by a ring made from blue lotus petals which is placed on top of a grain vase sprouting rice grains to encircle it. A Dharmacakra is on the top while a sun and moon are at the bottom on each side of the vase.
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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Sinhala: විදේශ කටයුතු අමාත්‍යාංශය Vidhesha Katayuthu Amathyanshaya; Tamil: வெளிநாட்டலுவல்கள் அமைச்சு) (also known as the Foreign Ministry or External Affairs Ministry) is a cabinet ministry of the Government of Sri Lanka responsible for conducting and managing Sri Lanka's foreign relations through oversight of its missions abroad via the Sri Lanka Overseas Service, as well as drafting and general implementation of the nation's foreign policy.


The ministry was formally established in 1948 following the independence of Ceylon as the Ministry of External Affairs and Defence, coming under the direct control of the Prime Minister of Ceylon. In 1977, J.R Jayawardena's government divided the ministry in two, forming the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of External Affairs. A.C.S Hameed was appointed as the first minister of External Affairs on 23 July 1977.[1]

Overseas missions[edit]

The ministry has 65 overseas missions including 13 High Commissions, a Deputy High Commission, 37 Embassies, 2 Permanent Representations to the United Nations, 11 consulates and a representative office. It provides consular assistance to Sri Lankans traveling, working and studying overseas.


  • General Administration Division
  • Overseas Administration Division
  • Consular Affairs Division
  • Protocol Division
  • Public Communications Division
  • Economic Affairs Division
  • Finance Division
  • IT Division
  • Legal Division
  • United Nations and Multilateral Affairs Division
  • South Asia and SAARC Division
  • Middle East and Africa Division
  • Europe, Americas and CIS Division
  • East Asia and Pacific Division

Ministers of Foreign Affairs[edit]

Permanent Secretaries[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Former Foreign Ministers". Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka. Retrieved 8 September 2017.
  2. ^ Wilhelm Woutersz, BY J. B. Muller
  3. ^ Bandara, M.H.M.N. (7 October 2007). "Invest further for a fruitful harvest". Sunday Observer. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 8 September 2017.

External links[edit]