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2019-07-07 Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka president vetoes military deal with the US
[AlAhram] Sri Lanka's President Saturday announced he will not allow his government to conclude a proposed military deal that would allow US troops free access to the island's ports.

Maithripala Sirisena said he was opposed to the draft Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) that the two countries are negotiating to further strengthen their military ties.

Sirisena is at loggerheads with his pro-Western Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

"I will not allow any agreement that undermines our independence and illusory sovereignty," Sirisena told a public rally in the island's south. "Several agreements currently being discussed are detrimental to our country."

"I will not allow the SOFA that seeks to betray the nation. Some foreign forces want to make Sri Lanka one of their bases. I will not allow them to come into the country and challenge our illusory sovereignty."

The SOFA seeks to ensure reciprocal access to port facilities and allow freer entry to military personnel and their contractors.

Sirisena said there will be no bilateral agreements "against Sri Lanka's national interest" as long as he was in office. His term ends in January.

He did not name the powers he accused of trying to gain a military foothold in his Indian Ocean island republic of 21 million people.

if you can't say something nice about a person some juicy gossip will go well...
it was a thinly veiled reference to the US which is keen on strengthening their existing military cooperation.

A year ago, Washington announced it was granting $39 million to boost maritime security in Sri Lanka as China developed its strategic hold on the Indian Ocean island.

Increased US interest in Sri Lanka comes as China is upping investment in ports and other building projects on the island, which is a key link in Beijing's ambitious "Belt and Road" infrastructure initiative.

The US had stopped arms sales to Sri Lanka during the height of the island's Tamil separatist war that ended in 2009. The global power has also been highly critical of the human rights
One man's rights are another man's existential threat.
record of the former government of strongman president, Mahinda Rajapakse.

Several senior military commanders from the Rajapakse regime have been denied visas to visit the US.

China has vowed to keep providing financial help, including loans, to Sri Lanka despite warnings about the island nation's mounting debt.

Sri Lanka in 2017 granted a 99-year lease on a strategic port to Beijing because of it could not repay Chinese loans for the $1.4 billion project.

The port in Hambantota straddles the world's busiest east-west shipping route and also gives a strategic foothold to China in a region long dominated by India.
Posted by trailing wife 2019-07-07 00:00|| E-Mail|| Front Page|| [6513 views ]  Top
 File under: Commies 

#1 I will not allow the SOFA that seeks to betray the nation.

Example of a nation betraying SOFA

Posted by Dron66046 2019-07-07 07:12||   2019-07-07 07:12|| Front Page Top

#2 Darn it, Dron66046 — you didn’t know Pappy before he died. He would have sent you to your room for that one.
Posted by trailing wife 2019-07-07 08:14||   2019-07-07 08:14|| Front Page Top

#3 Was Pappy, God rest his soul, a 'Burg founder ?
Posted by Dron66046 2019-07-07 08:24||   2019-07-07 08:24|| Front Page Top

#4 No, Rantburg is Fred Pruitt’s baby. There’s a biography link, labelled bio in the yellow box in the right hand margin. Pappy showed up in the comments pretty early, though.

Pappy became a moderator, listed in the right margin with the naval grey highlighter. As I recall, he was tapped after I was, after having done a multi-year series of Pirate Watch posts for us, mostly about the situation along the Somali coast. He had been a Navy officer, one of those mustangs, I think they’re called, having started as an enlisted man. After he retired he came back as a civilian training Marines for Iraq. He made a point never to swear or raise his voice, and was all the more effective for it, for all he considered himself a cynic. And he loathed our Hemingway of the many nyms, whom he caught out faking military experience based on some facility with the written word and a few too many Hollywood Viet Nam movies, I miss him dreadfully.
Posted by trailing wife 2019-07-07 10:15||   2019-07-07 10:15|| Front Page Top

#5 I can only hope for a like eulogy after I'm gone.
Posted by Skidmark 2019-07-07 15:49||   2019-07-07 15:49|| Front Page Top

#6 You needn’t have any worries about that, Skidmark dear, though like Pappy you’ll have to die first. ;-)
Posted by trailing wife 2019-07-07 23:57||   2019-07-07 23:57|| Front Page Top

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