Sri Lanka to adopt ‘India first approach’
Sri Lanka will adopt an “India first approach” as its new foreign policy plank and protect New Delhi’s strategic security interests, the country’s Foreign Secretary, Jayanath Colombage, has said as he sought to allay concerns amid China’s growing presence in the island nation.
Admiral Colombage became the first-ever foreign secretary from a military background when he was appointed by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to head the Foreign Ministry on August 14.
In an interview published by Daily Mirror on Wednesday, Colombage said “Sri Lanka will not do anything harmful to India’s strategic security interests.”
“China is the second-largest economy and India is considered the sixth-largest. In 2018, India was the world’s fastest-growing economy. That means we are between two economic giants,” he said.
Commenting on the Chinese investment in Hambantota port, Colombage says that Sri Lanka had offered India Hambantota first, but it did not undertake it for whatever reason.