The Sunday Leader
By Patricia A. Butenis US Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the Maldives
I congratulate The Sunday Leader on its 18th anniversary. A vibrant, free press plays a vital role in a democratic society, and The Sunday Leader has made an important contribution to journalism in Sri Lanka.
Since its founding by Lasantha Wickramatunge in 1994, the Leader has pursued the truth, at times at great risk and coming under attack during the last eighteen years, both verbally and even physically. Its greatest loss was the brutal January 2009 killing of Lasantha. In spite of the continued efforts to find justice in this case, unfortunately, it remains unresolved. Despite the loss of its founder and editor, the Leader continues to serve Sri Lankan society. The United States has never been spared criticism by the local media, including on the pages of the Leader.
But we know that we can count on the Leader to deal with issues in a serious, professional manner. Its accurate reporting of the news, editorial stands against injustice, and role as a member of the business community make The Sunday Leader an institution in Sri Lanka.
Congratulations on your anniversary, and I wish The Sunday Leader all the best as you continue Lasantha’s mission in pursuit of the truth.