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Navy denies Pakistani ship ‘war games’ reports

  • Says only routine ‘Passage Exercise’ with visiting vessel

Sri Lanka Navy has denied Indian media reports claiming that it is engaged in “war games” with Pakistan Navy Ship (PNS) Taimur, which arrived in Sri Lanka on a formal visit over the weekend.

In a statement yesterday (14), Sri Lanka Navy stated that the PNS Taimur is scheduled to conduct a Passage Exercise with Sri Lankan Navy Ship (SLNS) Sindurala in seas off Colombo as she departs the island today (15) upon completion of her visit.

“In this backdrop, certain media reports circulating about a ‘war game’ between the Sri Lanka Navy and Pakistan Navy are fallacious,” the statement said.

The Sri Lanka Navy added that with the concurrence of foreign navies, it conducts Passage Exercises as a routine engagement when their visiting naval ships departing the island after making official port calls.

The prime motive of these efforts is to enhance interoperability, partnerships, and goodwill, as well as exchange best practices with foreign navies, the Navy said.

As part of this Passage Exercise, PNS Taimur and SLNS Sindurala are expected to conduct maneuvering, and search-and-rescue exercises, it said.

Meanwhile, the Sri Lanka Navy has conducted similar Passage Exercises with the navies of countries such as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Japan, Germany, the UK, Russia, and Australia on a number of previous occasions.

“Conducting similar naval exercises with regional and extra-regional navies will enable each partner to overcome common maritime challenges in the future, through enhanced co-operation.”

“In addition, such engagements will also be vital for its own maritime operations of the Sri Lanka Navy,” the statement added.