No Chinese army base at port: SLanka

- AFP, COLOMBO

Oct 12, 2018-

Sri Lanka has rejected US claims that China might establish a “forward military base” at a strategic port leased to Beijing by the indebted Indian Ocean island nation.

Sri Lanka last year granted a 99-year lease on the Hambantota deep-sea port to Beijing, after it was unable to repay Chinese loans for the $1.4-billion project.

The port is one of a string of infrastructure projects in Asia, Africa and Europe being funded under China’s Belt and Road Initiative that has rattled the US and its allies, including neighbouring India. Last week US Vice-President Mike Pence said Hambantota “may soon become a forward military base for China’s growing blue-water navy,” according to US media.

Published: 12-10-2018 09:07

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