SL Navy steps in to secure release of Hambantota Port vessels

SL Navy steps in to secure release of Hambantota Port vessels

SL Navy steps in to secure release of Hambantota Port vessels

Written by Staff Writer

10 Dec, 2016 | 9:26 pm

The Sri Lanka Navy was deployed to secure the release of two vessels and tug boats that were being held by the Hambantota Port employees as part of their trade union action.

Despite this, the strike action by the port employees continued for its fourth day today.

The Hambantota Port employees commenced a strike action on Wednesday citing that their employment was at risk due an attempt to hand over the Magam Ruhunupura Port to a Chinese Company.

As a result of the strike action, two vessels carrying vehicles and construction material were forced to lay anchor at the jetty,  unable to obtain services from the port.

On the morning of Saturday, December 10, the protesting employees demonstrated aboard the two vessels and the jetty.

At around 09:45 navy personnel entered the jetty and took measures to release the two vessels and the tug boats from the protesting dock-workers.

Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy Vice Admiral Ravindra C. Wijegunaratne was also present. Our correspondent at the site reported that several dock-workers were injured in the scuffle.

The dock-workers remained at the entrance to the jetty and once again entered the jetty this afternoon.The two vessels and the tug boats are now being held by the Sri Lanka Navy.

The vessel transporting vehicles is owned by a Singaporean Company, while the vessel containing construction material is owned by a Chinese Company.

The crew of these vessels continue to remain inside.

The Satyagraha Campaign that commenced at the entrance to the Magam Ruhunupura Port entered day three today.

Meanwhile, responding to a query posed by News 1st, Navy Media Spokesperson Captain Akram Alavi said that the Navy had taken the necessary measures as per international maritime law, as the employees engaged in the Satyagraha had taken two docked ships into their custody.

Captain Alavi added that the employees had caused damage to the two ships.

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