Thursday, February 9, 2023


Thursday, February 9, 2023

Completely unjustified for countries to pressure Sri Lanka, says China

Riled by Sri Lanka’s request to delay the planned docking of a high-tech Chinese research vessel at the strategic Hambantota Port, China on Monday (08) took a dig at India, saying it was “Completely unjustified” for certain countries to cite the so-called “Security concerns” to pressure Colombo and “Grossly interfere” in its internal affairs.

According to reports from Colombo, Sri Lanka has asked Beijing to defer the arrival of the Chinese space and satellite tracking research vessel ‘Yuan Wang 5′ which was scheduled to dock at the Hambantota Port from August 11 to 17 due to security concerns expressed by India.

Responding to the reports, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin told a media briefing here that Beijing has taken note of the reports and asserted that “Sri Lanka is a sovereign country. It has the right to develop relations with other countries based on its development interests.”

“To have normal cooperation is the independent choice made by our two countries. It serves the shared interests of both sides and does not target any third party. It is completely unjustified for certain countries to cite the so-called “Security concerns” to pressure Sri Lanka,” he said.

“As Sri Lanka grapples with economic and political difficulties, to grossly interfere in Sri Lanka’s normal exchange and cooperation with other countries is to exploit its vulnerability, which is morally irresponsible and against the basic norms governing international relations,” Wang said in updated comments posted on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

“We urge the relevant parties to see China’s marine scientific research activities in a rational light and stop disrupting normal exchange and cooperation between China and Sri Lanka,” he said.

Sri Lanka is a transportation hub in the Indian Ocean. Scientific research vessels from various countries including China have made port calls in Sri Lanka for replenishment, Wang said.

“China always exercises freedom of the high seas in accordance with law and fully respects coastal countries’ jurisdiction over scientific research activities in waters under their jurisdiction,” he added.

More: The Times of India

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