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President Gotabaya Rajapaksa Does not want Alleged Abduction Incident of Swiss Embassy Employee to sour Relations Between Sri Lanka and Switzerland

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa yesterday said that he did not wish for the alleged abduction incident of a Swiss Embassy employee to sour relations between the two countries.

Commenting on the incident, Rajapaksa told a group of foreign correspondents that the matter was a fabrication to discredit his Government and Presidency.

“It is very clear that it is completely fabricated, I don’t know why she did so?” he said, pointing out that he had informed the Swiss Ambassador of the evidence available, which disputes the alleged victim’s vision of events. Rajapaksa defended the Swiss diplomat’s decision to lodge a complaint. “He took my point, we will continue to follow the rule of law.” he added. The President stated that Ambassador Mock has accepted the evidence as legitimate, and opined that the Swiss diplomats should distance themselves from the staffer. “It is up to the Police and the Courts, but the Embassy should distance themselves from the local employee.”

“As far as I am concerned, I want to clear the country’s name and my name,” he stressed, pointing out that some foreign media has not been factual in their reporting on the matter. Commenting on the Swiss government’s press release calling for due process to be followed, Rajapaksa reaffirmed that the investigation was held in accordance to the laws of the land, and opined that it may be possible that there was a miscommunication of actual events to the Swiss government.

Responding to a question on possible Swiss government involvement in the employee’s actions, Rajapaksa rejected the idea, stating that he didn’t believe in any foreign state’s involvement.

“No I don’t think so, I don’t suspect it, I don’t want to get Government-to-Government involved in this issue, I have told this to the [Swiss] Ambassador,” he stressed. President Rajapaksa revealed that the employee was allowed to be accompanied by a lawyer when recording a statement at the Criminal Investigation Division (CID), on the request of the Swiss Ambassador.

Courtesy:Daily FT