President asks Russian leader for fuel credit

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President Gotabaya Rajapaksa said he had held a teleconference with Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday (6) and had requested an offer of credit support to import fuel to Sri Lanka to overcome the present economic challenges.

The President, who faced another protest from the Opposition yesterday morning, in the afternoon tweeted that he had a productive teleconference with the Russian President.

In his tweet following the conversation, the President said he had humbly made a request to resume Aeroflot flights to Colombo. “We unanimously agreed that strengthening bilateral relations in sectors such as tourism, trade and culture was paramount in reinforcing the friendship our two nations share,” President Rajapaksa said.

Aeroflot suspended operations to Colombo after an Airbus A330 belonging to the carrier was detained based on a Court Order. The flight was grounded along with Russian tourists who were about to leave Sri Lanka. Although Russia believed it had been helping Sri Lanka during a crisis, the halting of their flight irked the Russian diplomatic community, which criticised the Government for being unruly.

The President thanked his Russian counterpart in a tweet for the assistance provided by his government in overcoming previous obstacles. He tweeted, “I requested an offer of credit support to import fuel to Sri Lanka to overcome the present economic challenges.”

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan