472. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Sri Lanka1

70468. Subject: Sri Lanka Ambassador’s Call on the Acting Secretary.

Sri Lanka Ambassador Kanakaratne made a brief courtesy call on the Acting Secretary March 29. The Ambassador noted that there were no significant bilateral problems and the conversation therefore was broad-gauged, touching upon a number of areas of general concern to both countries. The Acting Secretary identified some of these as including Indian Ocean policy, Sri Lanka’s democratic institutions, and its key role in multilateral fora. The U.S., he noted, would be watching with expectation the forthcoming New Delhi Non-Aligned Foreign Ministers conference.2 The discussion also covered Sri Lanka’s social achievements, which the Ambassador stressed as a long-standing GSL priority along with the preservation of a democratic institutional framework and human rights. Kanakaratne also conveyed GSL appreciation for U.S. assistance to Sri Lanka, both bilateral and multilateral. The Acting Secretary expressed special interest in Sri Lanka’s family planning achievements and stated our satisfaction with the constructive use to which U.S. aid has been put.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy File, D770110–0613. Confidential. Drafted by Thibault; cleared in S/S and D; approved by Dubs.
  2. Sri Lanka held the chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement from August 1976 until September 1979. The New Delhi Non-Aligned Foreign Ministers Conference took place April 6–11.