Dec 18, 2017

“Russian ban on tea not a problem”

The Sri Lankan Ambassador in Russia Dr. Saman Weerasinghe refuted claims that Sri Lankan tea exports to Russia was banned due to political reasons and added that that issue is not relevant to the ban.

He said this in response to a query made by Sri Lanka Mirror.

Weerasinghe said the only reason for the ban was the discovery of a beetle known as Khapra beetle being found in the shipment of tea.

He said that due to the same variety of beetle entering the country in 1987, Russia suffered a loss of around $ 5000 million in damage caused to the country’s Maize cultivation.

He said as soon as this issue cropped up, he had held discussions with the Russian authorities and just prior to our conversation too he had been in a discussion over this matter.

He also expressed that this issue can be resolved at an embassy level.

He further said; (Video)

His term extended

Meanwhile, Saman Weerasinghe’s term was to end on December 26 and he had even held his farewell party on December 20.

However, under these circumstances, the President had notified Weerasinghe to remain in Russia in his post until the issue is resolved.

Russian Secret Service

Sri Lanka Mirror reliably leans that reports indicating that the Sri Lankan government is preparing to hand over Russian intelligence officers to America secretly, is untrue.

The officer in concern has already gone back to Russia, it is reported.