News Centre -TDO- 04.02.2020-  Hosted by Sri Lankan Ambassador to Turkey Mohammad Rizvi Hassen and his spouse Husna Zamaniya Cader Hassen, a two-day Sri Lankan food festival was held at the Ankara Swiss hotel as part of the 72nd anniversary of Sri Lanka's independence.

The festival was attended by AK Party Istanbul deputy Ahmet Hamdi Camli, Chairman of the Turkey – Sri Lanka Inter-Parliamentary Friendship Group, Swiss Hotel General Manager Savas Colakoglu and a small number of distinguished guests.

 Ambassador Hassen, who made the opening speech, expressed that they wanted to bring the people of the capital together with the delicacies of his country, known for its spicy dishes, through Sri Lankan cooks. Ambassador Hassen pointed out the importance of intercultural rapprochement in the development of relations and said: "food always connects people; it increases awareness about each other. And you like to eat and have a long breakfast. I also want to use this culture to increase ties between Sri Lanka and Turkey. Thus, more Turks can go to Sri Lanka, Sri Lankans can come here.

When human-to-human communication increases, trade and investment increase. So our efforts are to increase publicity, to build bonds between cultures. That's what we want to do, starting with food."

Ambassador Hassen added: "Our meals have been influenced by many regions and nations. Since we are an island, many cultures have an influence such as Portuguese, Indian, British, Malaysian, perhaps Turkish cuisine." "We have come up with new dishes like Hoppers, Kottu Roti," Ambassador Hassen said, adding that by blending all these cultures, they have created a unique food culture.

Hoppers and Kottu Roti were offered to guests after the speeches.

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