The government is holding discussions with several countries, including India and Pakistan, to strengthen Sri Lanka's military, State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene informed Parliament yesterday.
Speaking during the Committee Stage debate on the 2016 Budget, Mr. Wijewardene said India was expected to provide two war ships to Sri Lanka, while talks had already begun with Pakistan to obtain new aircraft for the Air Force.
He said several other countries had also offered assistance to help Sri Lanka's military become on par with other advanced military forces in the world.
“Our government is committed to convert the Sri Lankan military into an advanced force, unlike the previous regime which used it to transport sand bags for night races,” Mr. Wijewardene said.
“We will not undermine the security of this country and we are fully committed to safeguard the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” he added.
He said plans were afoot to introduce a special benefit card system for security forces personnel that would allow them to obtain a number of goods and services at a special rate.
Commenting on the new Defence Headquarters being constructed in Pelawatte, Mr. Wijewardene said the first phase would be completed by January 2017, while the project would be fully completed in 2019.(Yohan Perera)
Comments - 3
Citizan Saturday, 05 December 2015 09:41 PM
Mr Mason, you must understand that military too needs to me modernized to be par with the technology and knowledge and equipment. Although there is no war you cant neglect security and maintain an Army with obsolete weapons and equipment, Strong defence forced will deter potential enemy of all kind....Pl understand that.
Mason Saturday, 05 December 2015 01:30 PM
We are not a country in war with any, nor do we have borders to defend. Our war with terrorism has been successfully concluded. It being so, we are maintaining the forces at great expense and now want to bolster it up.At this juncture is it really necessary. Are there not more important matters to bolster the needs of the public necessary. Look around and improve the economy and standard of living of the people.The Military can wait for another day.
Baz Saturday, 05 December 2015 04:24 PM
@ Mason, We do not have borders to defend? What planet are you living on?
Comments will be edited (grammar, spelling and slang) and authorized at the discretion of Daily Mirror online. The website also has the right not to publish selected comments.