The Ministry of Defence (MOD) revealed that all foreign passport holders are required to register with the MOD prior to travelling to the North. However, this regulation will not be strictly implemented for those born in Sri Lanka who hold foreign passports.
According to MOD sources, Sri Lankan expatriates who visit Sri Lanka to meet their families in the North are not required to obtain prior permission from the Ministry of Defence, but foreign nationals wishing to travel to the North either as tourists or in connection with projects will need prior permission from the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development.
“The Ministry of Defence does not mean to cause any inconvenience to the Sri Lankan expatriates who visit their families in the North after a long time,” sources added. Sources said that it would be welcome if expatriates who are visiting their families in the North obtain permission prior to their visit, but the military will not restrict their visits even if they do not obtain prior permission.
Recently, the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development made it compulsory for the foreigners who wish to visit the North either as tourists or in connection with some projects to inform the Ministry of Defence about the nature of their visits and the area they intend to visit and obtain prior permission to do so. The Ministry informed that written permission can be obtained by writing to the Ministry ahead of the visit.
According to the Ministry, the move was taken to prevent foreigners who visit the North under the pretext of being involved in development projects, but engage in promoting communal disharmony and thus posing a serious threat to national security.
Courtesy:The Sunday Leader