In a significant diplomatic move, Sri Lanka’s Army Commander, Lieutenant General Vikum Liyanage, embarked on a crucial visit to New Delhi, where he engaged in high-level discussions with the Chief of the Army Staff of the Indian Army, General Manoj Pande, emphasizing bilateral defense cooperation and regional stability.
Upon arrival in New Delhi, Lt. Gen. Liyanage was warmly welcomed at the Indian Army HQ, where he paid respects at the National War Heroes’ Memorial and received a formal Guard of Honor salute by Indian Army troops in an impressive parade.
The ensuing discussions between Lt. Gen. Liyanage and Gen. Pande delved into various facets of bilateral defense cooperation, focusing on augmenting training modules, fostering mutual understanding, and strengthening the camaraderie between the two armies.
Indian media highlighted the significance of the talks, underlining the imperative of bolstering military engagements between India and Sri Lanka, particularly in response to heightened military assertiveness by China in the region. Lt. Gen. Liyanage’s visit, spanning from December 3 to 7, is seen as a strategic move to reinforce military ties and cooperation.
Emphasizing the enduring relationship between the two nations, the Indian defence ministry portrayed Lt. Gen. Liyanage’s visit as a testament to the long-standing rapport shared by the Indian and Sri Lankan armies. The discussions, encompassing a range of contemporary issues, aimed at fortifying bilateral cooperation, were also extended to key Indian defense figures, including Defence Secretary Giridhar Armane, Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari, Vice Admiral Sanjay Jasjit Singh, and Chief of Defence Staff Gen Anil Chauhan.
Both parties reiterated their commitment to enhancing defense cooperation, with a particular focus on exploring new avenues for collaboration in the defense and security realms.
Lt. Gen. Liyanage’s visit, regarded as a pivotal step in strengthening diplomatic and military ties, seeks to deepen the existing bonds of friendship and understanding between the armies and nations of India and Sri Lanka. The primary objectives encompass not only fostering mutual cooperation but also identifying new opportunities for intensified defense collaboration between the two countries.