Indo-Lanka relations won’t be affected by domestic, regional issues


By Shamindra Ferdinando

 Having had discussions with top Indian officials dealing with security, foreign relations as well as intelligence, in New Delhi, Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa yesterday expressed confidence that Indo-Lanka relations wouldn’t be affected by either domestic or regional issues.

The Defence Secretary was responding to a query by The Island on whether the ongoing dispute between the GoSL and the TNA over post-war national conciliation could jeopardize bilateral relations.

The Defence Secretary also met Defence Minister A. K. Anthony. Their talks focused on the fisheries issue.

The visit took place in the wake of senior Tamil National Alliance delegation (TNA) visiting New Delhi.

Asked whether his talks were dominated by the ongoing controversy over the 13th Amendment, the Defence Secretary said that the issue came up during discussions with the Indian Foreign Secretary.

He undertook the visit alone as Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa and Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga were unable to join.

Responding to India’s concerns that external elements could use Sri Lanka to undermine India’s national security interests, the Defence Secretary assured that the GoSL wouldn’t allow extremist activities detrimental to India.

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