Amid stiff resistance from opposition parties, the government of Sri Lanka has clarified that India will not be allowed to use Mattala International Airport for military purposes even if ownership of the airport is transferred to the Airports Authority of India.
Sri Lanka’s minister of civil aviation, Nimal Siripala de Silva, has informed Parliament that a joint venture would be formed to operate the debt-ridden airport where 70 percent of its shares would be bought by India while the other 30 percent by the Sri Lankan government.
“We have set pre-conditions before transferring the airport. This is only a business venture. We will not allow anyone to use it for any military activities. Its air navigation system is operated by Sri Lankan authorities and security also provided by the Air Force and local partners,” Nimal Siripala de Silva, Sri Lanka’s minister of civil aviation, said. Read More