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2022-08-14 HKT 10:45
Sri Lanka's foreign ministry says the country has granted port access to a Chinese research vessel, the Yuan Wang 5, in spite of objections by India.
The ship had originally been due to call at Sri Lanka's Hambantota port on Thursday. But Colombo asked Beijing to indefinitely defer the visit following India's objections.
Sri Lanka now says the ship can dock at Hambantota on Tuesday and remain for six days.
The Yuan Wang 5 is described as a research and survey vessel by international shipping and analytics sites, but Indian media say it has a dual-use as a spy ship.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said on Monday, “We urge the relevant parties to see China’s marine scientific research activities in a rational light and stop disrupting normal exchange and cooperation between China and Sri Lanka." (AP/AFP)