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China Donates Military Equipment to Sri Lanka

The Chinese government has delivered special explosives disposal equipment to Sri Lanka as part of a military grant scheme.

A handover ceremony was recently conducted at the Sri Lankan Army headquarters, with defense secretary Kamal Gunaratne and Chinese Ambassador to Colombo Qi Zhenhong in attendance.

The donation included 18 REOD 4000 Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) medium robots, 10 anti-explosive blankets, and 10 explosion protection tanks.

The equipment is expected to support the army in carrying out bomb detection and bomb disposal missions.

The defense ministry did not disclose the total value of the donation.

Expanding Military Footprint?

China donating military equipment to Sri Lanka comes amid speculation that it will soon build a naval base in the South Asian nation.

In August 2022, a Chinese research vessel docked in Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port, fueling espionage concerns.

An assessment by a US university last year stated that the port will most likely be the location of the new base, considering China’s large investment there.

However, State Defense Minister Premitha Bandara Tennakoon dismissed reports about establishing a military facility within the Sri Lankan borders.

“Sri Lanka has not held discussions with any foreign government including China for a possible establishment of a military base here in Sri Lanka,” she told Daily Mirror.

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