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* Sri Lankan writer launches second book on China
Wed, Sep 13, 2017, 12:17 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Sept 13 (China.org) "Wandering with Pleasure along the Roof of the World," the fourth book in a series of the "Beauty of Travel" publications authored by Saman Athaudahetti, was launched in Beijing on Tuesday.

The book, in Sinhala language and his second on China, features detailed information on history, culture, religion and social development of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region as well as his travels in east China's Shandong Province. His first book on China was "Wandering with Pleasure along the Silk Road Route."

Saman Athaudahetti, a well-known poet, song writer and the Additional Media Secretary to Sri Lankan Prime Minister, was described by Sri Lanka Ambassador to China Karunasena Kodituwakku as "walking with kings -yet not losing the common touch" for his books at the launch ceremony.

Athaudahetti has traveled in China extensively. He went to Tibet in 2007 and 2016 and stayed there for almost a month. During his trip to Lhasa and Shigatse in Tibet, he had a chance to encounter the people and the local family life.

"The two visits toTibet inspired me to write a travelogue to introduce a real Tibet to Sri Lankans and the rest of the world," said Athaudahetti to China.org.cn.

"I love Tibetan culture and my country Sri Lanka, a Buddhist country, has a historical relationship with Tibet from the early days," said Athaudahetti. "What I experienced in Tibet is from [the content in] English books through western angles - from which most Sri Lankans have heard about Tibet."

Athaudahetti said that the people he met in Shigatse, who used to be slaves, have big houses and live freely and happily.

Athaudahetti presents a modern China to Sri Lankan readers, said Prof. Sunil Ariyaratne from the University of Sri Jayewardenepura. He said Sri Lankans used to know China through Chinese literature works like Ba Jin's "The Family," classic novel "A Journey to the West" and poems by Chinese late leader Mao Zedong.

His book opens a window to a new China, commented Yuan Zhibin, director general of Bureau of South Asia and Southeast Asia of the International Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, as it sheds a light on the great changes in Tibet in wake of China's reform and opening up over the past three decades.

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisenaalso sent a message of congratulations to the book launch, which was considered as one of the events to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of China-Sri Lanka diplomatic ties in 2017.

The ceremony was also presented by Gayantha Karunathilaka, Minister of the Land and Parliament Reforms and Tang Xianwen, Deputy Director General of the Publicity Department of the Tibet Autonomous Region.

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