Chinese submarine denied port docking by Lanka, China quiet.

Defence News: Sri Lanka refused China, permission to dock submarine at Colombo scheduled to arrive next week.  China has taken it with a pinch of salt and stayed quite for now. This has been seen in India as a reaction to protests by India when a Chinese submarine docked in Colombo port in 2014. In part it may be also as a result of the economic stalemate issue of  Sri Lanka’s Hambantota Port

INS Chakra, An Indian Nuclear Sub, Photo: IN

“I have just read the relevant information. I suggest you raise it with the defence ministry for more details,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said when asked whether China has expressed itself to Sri Lanka for refusal to dock Chinese submarine in Colombo port. “What I can tell you is that China and Sri Lanka enjoy traditional friendship. The two sides maintain sound cooperation in the fields of politics, economy, culture and military to military exchanges,” he said. China is getting ready to host Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wicikramasinghe regarding the silk road summit on May 14-15 by the way.

In February this year, Sri Lankan Ambassador to China Karunasena Kodituwakku told the media that Colombo will not entertain military activity by China in any of its ports including Hambantota where a Chinese firm plans to acquire 80 percent share. The Hambantota port will still be operated by China as Lanka owes debt to the Chinese. The deal has not been beneficial to the Lankans. Sri Lanka offered to lease 80 per cent of the loss making Hambantota port for 99 years lease to China.

Wickaramansinghe and Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif are two top leaders from South Asia to attend the conference in which India has not confirmed its participation due to its objections to the USD 46 billion China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Other South Asian countries would be represented by  ministerial or official  delegation. China has not yet release the list of delegates participating in the event.

Written by Baldeva Singh

Baldeva Singh is a tough talking nationalist who has a flair for writing. Defence matters, technical details on weapons and war scenarios are his key expert areas. Baldev is known to walk the talk in his personal life. He is from Patiala (Punjab). His friends call him a “blunt weapon” but he is often found reading old books when free!

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