Indian Navy chief holds discussions with Lanka Prez to boost bilateral military ties
Indian Navy chief Admiral R Hari Kumar has held discussions with senior political and defence leadership of Sri Lanka, including President Ranil Wickremesinghe, on furthering defence cooperation between the two nations.
Kumar, who arrived here on Tuesday on a four-day visit, called on President Wickremesinghe on Wednesday.
"Discussions focused on furthering defence cooperation between India and Sri Lanka towards strengthening bilateral ties. Sri Lanka's role in steering Colombo Security Conclave towards ensuring peace and security in the region was acknowledged," the Indian High Commission here tweeted.
He also called on Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena.
"Discussed the importance of strong defence ties between and means to further strengthen existing linkages between Armed Forces of the two countries," the mission tweeted.
Kumar also met Premitha Bandara Tennakoon, State Minister of Defence of Sri Lanka.
"The CNS (Chief of Naval Staff) conveyed #India’s commitment towards strengthening bilateral defence cooperation, including opportunities for greater defence industry collaboration," Indian Navy tweeted on Thursday.
He also met with Vice Admiral Nishantha Ulugetenne, Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy.
"Fruitful discussions on #maritimesecurity matters of common interest and prospects for further enhancing cooperation in the maritime domain," the Indian Navy tweeted.
High Commissioner Gopal Baglay along with the Navy chief hosted a reception onboard the INS Sahayadri.
Sri Lankan Parliament Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena and ministers, including Nimal Siripala Silva, Douglas Devananda and Kanchana Wijesekera, several dignitaries and friends of India attended the reception.
"Truly a memorable evening on board!!!," the Indian mission tweeted.
Kumar also visited Sri Lanka Navy Ship SLNS Sindurala and Naval facilities at the Colombo Port.
"During interactions, the @srilanka_navy leadership & the ship's crew acknowledged the operational utility of the OPVs, built by @goashipyardltd for the Sri Lanka Navy," the mission said.
Remembering the supreme sacrifice of brave Indian soldiers, Admiral Kumar paid his tributes at the IPKF Memorial on Tuesday.
Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) was the Indian military contingent performing a peacekeeping operation in Sri Lanka between 1987 and 1990.
Kumar has been invited as the Chief Guest and Reviewing Officer for the Commissioning Parade at the Naval and Maritime Academy (NMA), Trincomalee, scheduled on Thursday.
Admiral Kumar's visit comes months after the docking of a Chinese spy ship at Sri Lanka's Hambantota port triggered a diplomatic row between New Delhi and Colombo.
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