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Lanka needs support, not ‘unwanted pressure’ to serve another country’s agenda, says India as it slams China

India on Saturday hit back at China for alleging that it was “interfering” in Sri Lanka’s internal affairs, firmly telling Beijing that what Colombo needs now was “support, not unwanted pressure or unnecessary controversies” to serve another country’s agenda.

Hinting at India’s objection to the docking of Chinese ballistic missile and satellite tracking ship ‘Yuan Wang 5’ at the Hambantota port, Chinese ambassador to Sri Lanka Qi Zhenhongon in a statement on Friday said that “external obstruction” based on so-called security concerns without any evidence is a “thorough interference” into the island nation’s sovereignty and independence.

“We have noted the remarks of the Chinese Ambassador. His violation of basic diplomatic etiquette may be a personal trait or reflecting a larger national attitude,” the High Commission of India in Sri Lankan tweeted. It said Qi’s view of India may be coloured by how his own country behaves.

“India, we assure him, is very different,” the Indian mission here said. The Ambassador’s imputing a geopolitical context to the visit of a purported scientific research vessel is a giveaway, the mission said, adding that “opaqueness and debt driven agendas are now a major challenge, especially for smaller nations. Recent developments are a caution”.

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