Colombo, May 23: Sri Lankan career diplomat, Aruni Yasodha Wijewardene, took charge as Sri Lanka’s Foreign Secretary on Monday. She succeeds Adm.Prof. Jayanth Colombage. Adm.Colombage vacated his position following the resignation of Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and the automatic dissolution of his cabinet of ministers.
Aruni Wijewardene had served as High Commissioner to Malaysia between 2000 and 2001 and Ambassador to Austria from 2005 to 2007. She was Secretary of the Policy Making Organs of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). She had held the position of Governor for Sri Lanka on the IAEA Board of Governors from 2005 to 2007.
Mrs.Wijewardene is the daughter of the Late Dr.Lorna Dewaraja, a well-known historian. An acknowledged authority on the Muslims of Sri Lanka, Dr.Dewaraja had emphasized the cordial relations that had existed between Sri Lankan Muslims and the Buddhist Sinhalese for hundreds of years.