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* Sri Lanka government rejects media reports of President accusing India's RAW of plotting to assassinate him
Wed, Oct 17, 2018, 08:34 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Oct 17, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government on Wednesday flatly rejected media reports of President Maithripala Sirisena accusing India's intelligence agency, Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) of plotting to assassinate him as "baseless and false".

Issuing a media statement, the Foreign Affairs Ministry said its attention has been drawn to media reports attributed to President Maithripala Sirisena alleging the involvement of an Indian Intelligence Service in a plot to assassinate him.

"The Ministry wishes to clarify that the media reports in this connection are baseless and false," the Foreign Ministry said emphasizing that relations between Sri Lanka and India are strong.

The media reports came ahead of Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's visit to New Delhi later this week for talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to speed up India-backed projects, including the East Terminal project, in the island nation.

The Ministry emphasized that relations between Sri Lanka and India including at the highest levels of government are strong, encompassing multiple spheres including intelligence sharing.

"It is disappointing therefore that matters of this nature have become the subject of distorted and erroneous media reports taking the Presidentís remarks out of context, which has given rise to further media and social media speculation and the spread of unfounded fear among the public," the Foreign Ministry statement said.

The statement further said that the President Sirisena and High Commissioner of India had a meeting today to discuss the matter.

"In continuation of the close and regular interaction between Sri Lanka and India at all levels including at the highest levels of government, President Sirisena had discussions this morning as well at a meeting with the High Commissioner of India in Colombo," the Foreign Ministry said

A leading newspaper in India, The Hindu quoting unnamed sources reported that Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has accused the Indian intelligence agency, Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) of plotting his assassination.

According to the report by Colombo-based The Hindu correspondent Meera Sirinivasan, President Sirisena has told the ministers at the weekly Cabinet meeting on Tuesday that the Indian intelligence agency was "trying to kill" him, but that "Prime Minister Narendra Modi may not be aware of the plan."

 

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