Is Chung Wrong on Red Sea Deployment ?

Is Chung Wrong on Red Sea Deployment ?

Contradicting a claim made by US Ambassador Julie Chung the previous day, authoritative sources denied the deployment of an Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) in support of operation ‘Prosperity Guardian’ in the Red Sea to combat Houthis , reports the island .There has been comment so far from the US embassy.

The US envoy’s claim was made at the opening of the third Indian Ocean Security Conference organised by Pathfinder Foundation in Colombo on Wednesday (28). Among the participants were President Ranil Wickremesinghe and Sri Lanka’s former High Commissioner in New Delhi Milinda Moragoda.

Sources said that two OPVs, SLNS Sayura (P 620) and SLNS Gajabahu, formally USCC Sherman (P 626) had been deployed on a special several weeks long mission in the Arabian Sea to intercept vessels carrying narcotics. After the conclusion of the given task, P 626 had returned to Colombo whereas SLNS Sayura, formally Sukanya class patrol vessel of the Indian Navy was on its way back.

Sources said that Sri Lanka lacked the wherewithal to deploy OPVs in a missile and drone operations environment in the Red Sea. The US formed a coalition in December 2024 to meet the growing threat posed by Yemen based Houthis to Red Sea shipping.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe  vowed that if the economic rights of Sri Lanka are harmed in the Red Sea, the country will stand up for them participating at an Air Force event in Trincomalee .

The President further said that Sri Lanka will work to provide the necessary support to the United Nations organization whenever there are problems with peace in the region and the world.


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