No intention to build a military base in SL: US

18 July 2019 03:13 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The United States has no intention to build a military base or establish a permanent military presence in Sri Lanka, US Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Alaina B. Teplitz said yesterday.

The Ambassador said this during a live Facebook discussion held on Wednesday afternoon.

She said the US would not gain any land ownership or control through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact.

She also commented on the prosed agreements of Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and the Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA).

“The draft VFA, which is under negotiation and has not been concluded, and the ACSA, which was signed in 2007 and renewed in 2017, aim to facilitate military cooperation, particularly our joint exercises and disaster relief. The ACSA agreement is designed to provide a legal framework for logistical support between the US and Sri Lankan militaries and to exchange supplies and services, as well as payment for those supplies and services. The VFA addresses the status of US military and civilian employees of the US Department of Defence who may be temporarily present in Sri Lanka for exercises or official duty at the invitation of the Government of Sri Lanka,” she said.

Commenting on the MCC, Ambassador Teplitz said it was not contingent on the VFA and ACSA, and is not a military agreement.

“The MCC “Compact” is a development assistance agreement to support economic development. It is a gift from the people of the United States, not a loan,” she said.

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