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Sri Lanka


    • Names:

        conventional long form:
        Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka

        conventional short form:
        Sri Lanka

        former:
        Ceylon

    • Digraph:
      CE

    • Type:
      republic

    • Capital:
      Colombo

    • Administrative divisions:
      8 provinces; Central, North Central, North Eastern, North Western, Sabaragamuwa, Southern, Uva, Western

    • Independence:
      4 February 1948 (from UK)

    • National holiday:
      Independence and National Day, 4 February (1948)

    • Constitution:
      adopted 16 August 1978

    • Legal system:
      a highly complex mixture of English common law, Roman-Dutch, Muslim, Sinhalese, and customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

    • Suffrage:
      18 years of age; universal

    • Executive branch:

        chief of state and head of government:
        President Chandrika Bandaranaike KUMARATUNGA (since 12 November 1994); note - Sirimavo BANDARANAIKE is the Prime Minister; in Sri Lanka the president is considered to be both the chief of state and the head of the government, this is in contrast to the more common practice of dividing the roles between the president and the prime minister when both offices exist; election last held 9 November 1994 (next to be held NA November 2000); results - Chandrika Bandaranaike KUMARATUNGA (People's Alliance) 62%, Srima DISSANAYAKE (United National Party) 37%, other 1%

        cabinet:
        Cabinet; appointed by the president in consultation with the prime minister

    • Legislative branch:
      unicameral

        Parliament:
        elections last held 16 August 1994 (next to be held by August 2000); results - PA 49.0%, UNP 44.0%, SLMC 1.8%, TULF 1.7%, SLPF 1.1%, EPDP 0.3%, UPF 0.3%, PLOTE 0.1%, other 1.7%; seats - (225 total) PA 105, UNP 94, EPDP 9, SLMC 7, TULF 5, PLOTE 3, SLPF 1, UPF 1

    • Judicial branch:
      Supreme Court

    • Political parties and leaders:
      All Ceylon Tamil Congress (ACTC), C. G. Kumar PONNAMBALAM; Ceylon Workers Congress (CLDC), S. THONDAMAN; Communist Party, K. P. SILVA; Communist Party/Beijing (CP/B), N. SHANMUGATHASAN; Democratic People's Liberation Front (DPLF), leader NA; Democratic United National Front (DUNF), G. M. PREMACHANDRA; Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP), Douglas DEVANANDA; Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRL), Suresh PREMACHANDRAN; Eelam Revolutionary Organization of Students (EROS), Shankar RAJI; Lanka Socialist Party/Trotskyite (LSSP, or Lanka Sama Samaja Party), Colin R. DE SILVA; Liberal Party (LP), Chanaka AMARATUNGA; New Socialist Party (NSSP, or Nava Sama Samaja Party), Vasudeva NANAYAKKARA; People's Alliance (PA), Chandrika Bandaranaike KUMARATUNGA; People's Liberation Organization of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), Dharmalingam SIDARTHAN; People's United Front (MEP, or Mahajana Eksath Peramuna), Dinesh GUNAWARDENE; Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), Sirimavo BANDARANAIKE; Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC), M. H. M. ASHRAFF; Sri Lanka People's Party (SLMP, or Sri Lanka Mahajana Party), Ossie ABEYGUNASEKERA; Sri Lanka Progressive Front (SLPF), leader NA; Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO), leader NA; Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF), M. SIVASITHAMBARAM; United National Party (UNP), Ranil WICKREMANSINGHE; Upcountry People's Front (UPF), leader NA; several ethnic Tamil and Muslim parties, represented in either parliament or provincial councils

        note:
        the United Socialist Alliance (USA), which was formed in 1987 and included the NSSP, LSSP, SLMP, CP/M, and CP/B, was defunct as of 1993, following the formation of the People's Alliance Party (PA)

    • Other political or pressure groups:
      Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and other smaller Tamil separatist groups; other radical chauvinist Sinhalese groups; Buddhist clergy; Sinhalese Buddhist lay groups; labor unions

    • Member of:
      AsDB, C, CCC, CP, ESCAP, FAO, G-24, G-77, GATT, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, INMARSAT, INTELSAT, INTERPOL, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, NAM, PCA, SAARC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNU, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

    • Diplomatic representation in US:

        chief of mission:
        Ambassador Jayantha DHANAPALA

        chancery:
        2148 Wyoming Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008

        telephone:
        [1] (202) 483-4025 through 4028

        FAX:
        [1] (202) 232-7181

        consulate(s):
        New York

    • US diplomatic representation:

        chief of mission:
        Ambassador Teresita C. SCHAFFER

        embassy:
        210 Galle Road, Colombo 3

        mailing address:
        P. O. Box 106, Colombo

        telephone:
        [94] (1) 448007

        FAX:
        [94] (1) 437345

    • Flag:
      yellow with two panels; the smaller hoist-side panel has two equal vertical bands of green (hoist side) and orange; the other panel is a large dark red rectangle with a yellow lion holding a sword, and there is a yellow bo leaf in each corner; the yellow field appears as a border that goes around the entire flag and extends between the two panels






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Revised 13-August-1997