Ulugetenne Meets US Navy Chief
Admiral Nishantha Ulugetenne met his American counterpart, United States Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Michael M. Gilday, when the former attended the 24th International Seapower Symposium (ISS) organised by the US Navy, at the US Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island from 14-17 September 2021, where Secretary of the US Navy Carlos Del Toro was the chief guest, SLN said on Monday (20).
Gilday at this meeting reiterated the importance of meeting heads of navies, coastguards and other senior naval leaders from more than 100 Nations to discuss cooperative strategies for maritime security. Ulugetenne also met United States Coastguard Commandant, Admiral Karl L. Schultz at this event.
He thanked Schultz for agreeing to transfer the third 3rd USCG Cutter to SLN free of cost and appreciated the performances of the previously handed over two ships which are already in SLN fleet. The transferring of the 3rd USCG Cutter is currently in its final stage. Schultz praised Ulugetenne with regard to the recent drug busts mid sea, with the involvement of SLNS Samudura (formerly USCG Courageous). They also deliberated on possible avenues to help build capacity of SLN and Sri Lanka Coastguard.
Ulugetenne also met US Pacific Fleet Commander, Admiral Samuel J. Paparo, where they discussed opportunities to enhance interoperability through fleet exercise that of the recent CARAT (Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training) 2021 as well as the sharing of knowledge for mutual benefits. Ulugetenne at this event met Indian Naval Commander, Chief of Naval Staff India, Admiral Karambir Singh, where their meeting focused on curbing drug trafficking across the Indian Ocean. The two sides also exchanged views on the formation of a plan between India, Sri Lanka and other neighbouring countries to carry out anti-drug operations in the Indian Ocean.
Singh also pledged support with training facilities and expertise for capacity building for SLN as well as for a Naval Air Arm. Singh also extended an invitation to Ulugetenne to attend the ‘GOA Conclave’ Maritime Conference to be held by the Indian Navy in October. Meanwhile, Ulugetenne also met Pakistani Navy Commander, Chief of Naval Staff Pakistan, Admiral M. Amjad Khan Niazi at this event.
The Pakistan Navy continues to open training opportunities to SLN personnel. Niazi also expressed his appreciation for the participation of the SLN at the recent multilateral naval exercise organised by the Pakistan Navy. (PA)