Sri Lanka grants permission for entry of Chinese research vessel despite India's concern : Reports
Colombo: The Sri Lankan government has granted permission to the Chinese tracking vessel Yuang Wang 5 to dock at the Hambantota Port, a move that was objected to by India.
Yuang Wang 5 will now berth at the Hambantota International Port on August 16, five days later than scheduled. It was originally due to arrive on August 11. This was delayed after India raised strong concerns citing national security, reports Daily Mirror.
India is concerned that the vessel could spy on New Delhi's military installations.
Sri Lanka requested China to defer the visit until "further consultations were held on the matter." "The vessel abruptly changed track earlier this week. However, it is now heading towards Hambantota again," the newspaper reported.
As both parties did not offer "concrete reasons", the Sri Lankan Government granted the go-ahead. The docking of the ship has turned into a geopolitical headache for the Sri Lankan Government," the Sri Lankan newspaper reported.
Designated as a research stroke survey vessel, Yuan Wang 5 was built in 2007 and has a carrying capacity of 11,000 tonnes.
The Hambantota International Port is located just 250 kilometres from Colombo city.
The port was built with high-interest Chinese loans.
The Sri Lankan government struggled to repay the debt they had taken from China following which the port was handed over to the Chinese on a 99-year lease, reports ANI.