Defence Secretary denies NSC meeting

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Refuting allegations that a National Security Council (NSC) meeting was convened over the protests in Mirihana, Defence Secretary Gen. Kamal Gunaratne, contrary to media reports, stated that no such meeting had taken place.

The Defence Secretary illustrating the composition and significance of the NSC stressed that was no instance of unauthorised persons attending its meetings.

President as the Minister of Defence and the Chairperson, Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Public Security, State Minister of Defence, Secretary to the President, Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, Secretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Secretary to Ministry of Public Security, Secretary to the Treasury, Chief of the Defence Staff, Tri-Service Commanders, Inspector General of Police are the NSC’s statutory members while the Chief of National Intelligence and Director General of State Intelligence Service, Director General of Military Intelligence, Deputy Inspector General of Criminal Investigation Department, Director of Counter Terrorist Investigation Division and the Commandant of Special Task Force participate as its appointed members.  

He also explained that the meeting is hosted by the Presidential Secretariat as it is the principal organ for the President to make decisions on all national security aspects of the country. “After Gotabaya Rajapaksa assumed office as the President, no any unauthorised persons were invited/allowed to attend the NSC meetings.   

“If there are matters which have an impact on national security, then the heads of those respective institutions will be called and the matter will be dealt with prior to the NSC agenda.

“Therefore, this information is incorrect, unfounded and misleading. The Ministry advises the media and the public to refrain from believing such misinformation on national security matters. The Ministry of Defence will regularly issue updates on matters of national importance being the Ministry to oversee the defence related issues in the country,” he added.