The Sri Lankan Association of Geneva Switzerland mourns over the death of high-profile diplomatic Mr Jayantha Dhanapala and extends their condolences to the wife of late Dhanapala Maureen and his children Sivanka and Kiran.
The long-served acclaimed Sri Lankan carrier Diplomat passed away on Saturday 27 May at the age of 85 while receiving treatment at the Kandy National Hospital. He was spending his last days in his born village in Kandy. Final rites on his remains took place in his alma mater Trinity College Chapelle on Monday morning and then for cremated at Mahaiyawa cemetery.
The Sri Lankan Association of Geneva says that during his stellar career, Dhanapala has had diplomatic postings in London, Beijing, Washington DC, New Delhi and Geneva. He performed duties in ambassadorial appointments in Geneva accredited to the UN from 1984-1987 and in Washington DC from 1995-1997.
He was the UN Under-Secretary-General for the Office for Disarmament from Affairs 1998-2003. Ambassador Dhanapala also served as a member of the Constitutional Council of Sri Lanka from 2018-2020, the 11th President of the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs and the Deputy Chairman of the Governing Board of Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).
He has received many international awards and honorary doctorates, and has published five books and several articles in international journals and lectured widely.
Incidentally, SLAG was established in 1985 on a suggestion of the late Ambassador Dhanapala who presided at the inaugural meeting and was appointed as the founding patron. It was his vision/foresight that ensured the continuity of the Association through the years. We are grateful for his support during his tenure as PR UN in Geneva and beyond.