Indo-Lanka naval cooperation vital - Kadirgamar

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 17 May 2005, 10:13 GMT]
Operational relations between the navies of the India and Sri Lanka countries were vital to the national security of both countries, Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar said this week.

SLN's SayuraHe made his comments during an address to a delegation from the Indian Naval Higher Command course currently on a visit to Colombo, the Daily Mirror reported Tuesday.

Observing that India and Sri Lanka whose cultures are "inextricably interlinked" shared an "age-old" relationship, Mr. Kadirgamar remarked that good relations between the two Navies were very important.

He added that the Naval configuration was particularly important to Sri Lanka, being an island nation.

The Minister made these observations when the visiting delegation called on the Foreign Minister at the Foreign Affairs Ministry recently, the Daily Mirror said.

India's Deputy High Commissioner in Sri Lanka Mr. Mohan Kumar and senior officials of the Foreign Ministry were also present, the Daily Mirror said.

In the discussion which followed, views were exchanged on the economic dimensions of foreign policy, regional cooperation in South Asia, energy, challenges faced by the South Asian region and other international issues, the Foreign Ministry said.

The Naval Higher Command Course is the highest level course conducted within the Indian Navy for officers of the rank of Captain (Navy), Colonel (Army) and Group Captain (Air Force).

The visiting delegation consists of 29 members belonging to the 17th Naval Higher Command Course, and is led by Commodore S.N. Singh.

Commodore Singh called on the Chief of the Sri Lanka Navy Rear Admiral DSM Wijewickrama after his team was welcomed at Sri Lankan Naval Headquarters on 9th May 2005.

Meanwhile, the Sri Lanka Navy’s flagship, the SLNS ‘Sayura’ has sailed for Singapore to participate in the International Maritime Exhibition to be held there from 17th May 2005 to 20th May 2005.

The Exhibition is sponsored and organized by the Military and Defence hardware producers and is the fifth in a series of exhibitions since 2003. Warships from Asia Pacific Region and Naval Chiefs of the countries in this region had been invited.

The Sayura, an Offshore Patrol Vessel, and the largest ship in the Sri Lankan fleet, was supplied by India to bolster Colombo’s ability to take on the Sea Tigers.


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