Chinese scientific research vessel ‘Yuan Wang 5’ arrived at the Hambantota Port in Sri Lanka today.
The Chinese vessel was scheduled to dock at the Chinese-leased Hambantota port on August 11 for refueling and leave on August 17.
However, the visit was delayed as India had expressed its security concerns over the docking of the vessel at Hambantota.
India had raised concerns as the vessel was shown as a spy ship that can map the ocean bed which is critical to anti-submarine operations of the Chinese Navy.
Thereafter, Sri Lanka communicated to China to defer the visit of the Chinese vessel Yuang Wang 5 to Hambantota port.
Following further talks, the Chinese scientific research vessel ‘Yuan Wang 5’ resumed its visit and reached Hambantota Port this morning.
Designated as a research and survey vessel, Yuan Wang 5 was built in 2007 and has a carrying capacity of 11,000 tonnes.
During this significant visit to the key Sri Lankan port, it could conduct satellite research in the northwestern part of the Indian Ocean region, prompting security concerns for India.
The Hambantota port, located around 250 kms from Colombo was built with high-interest Chinese loans.
The Sri Lankan government struggled to repay the debt they had taken from China following which the port was handed over to the Chinese on a 99-year lease.