China miffed over deferment of spy vessel’s visit, calls security concerns ‘senseless’

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China miffed over deferment of spy vessel’s visit, calls security concerns ‘senseless’

Miffed over Sri Lanka deferring the visit of the Chinese spy vessel, Yuan Wang 5, China, without mentioning India, said that the security concerns raised over the vessel are “senseless”, adding that cooperation between Colombo and Beijing “does not target third country”.The vessel was expected to dock at Hambantota port on August 11, but Sri Lankan foreign ministry last week communicated to the Chinese embassy in Colombo that the approval has been revoked.In a daily presser, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said, “Sri Lanka is a sovereign state and, it can develop relations with other countries, in light of its own development interest.”“Cooperation between Sri Lanka and China are independently chosen by the two countries based on common interest and it doesn’t target third party,” he added.Urging “relevant parties”, the spokesperson asked them to see “China’s scientific exploration in a reasonable and sensible way and stop disturbing normal exchange of cooperation between China and Sri Lanka.”India had raised the matter with the Sri Lanka government over fears that the Chinese vessel was there to spy on India. Notably, the permission for the spy vessel was given on July 12, just a day before the then president Gotabaya Rajapakse fled the country.The Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson explained that “many scientific explorations ships including those from China have stopped at the port of Sri Lanka for resupplies. China has always exercised the freedom of navigation in the high seas and fully respects the jurisdiction of coastal states of the scientific exploration activities within their jurisdiction waters.”Last month, India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) raised the matter, In response to a question, MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said, “We are aware of reports of a proposed visit by this vessel at Hambantota port, in August. Let me just say that government carefully monitors any development having a bearing on India’s security and economic interests and takes all necessary measures to safeguard them.”Colombo had called for deferment of the visit of the Chinese vessel on August 5, a day after President Ranil Wickremesinghe reaffirmed the “One China” principle amid the Taiwan crisis.  India has provided economic support worth over $2 billion to cash-strapped Sri Lanka.WATCH WION LIVE HERERead More

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