The Government says the Navy will not be withdrawn from the Hambantota Port.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has informed China that the security of the port will be in the hands of Sri Lanka.
Cabinet co-spokesman Udaya Gammanpila, speaking to reporters at the post Cabinet virtual press conference, said that the President had conveyed this to China after the current administration took office.
“So the issue of the Navy being withdrawn from the Port does not arise,” Gammanpila said when asked if China had requested that the Navy be withdrawn from the Port.
Following the signing of an agreement in December 2017 with China, the Hambantota port operations were handed over to Hambantota International Port Group (HIPG) and Hambantota International Port Services (HIPS).
Concerns have been raised in the past, particularly by India, over China’s involvement with the Hambantota Port.
However, last December the Hambantota International Port (HIP) built a new Police station to house over 40 Police personnel within the port premises.
The new fully equipped station replaced the small Police post that functioned previously in the port, allowing officers at the new facility to widen their reach in policing, especially when port activities are on the rise. (Easwaran Rutnam