China is a predator; US is a friend-Mike Pompeo
2020-10-28 at 12:50
United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says Sri Lanka must continue to be a sovereign, independent and successful state.
Speaking at a joint media briefing with Foreign Affairs Minister Dinesh Gunawardena this morning, visiting Secretary of State Pompeo said the US hopes Sri Lanka gains sustainable development.
He noted that Sri Lanka and the US have a shared democratic vision, including for free and open shipping lanes for trade and travel.
Pompeo claimed his visit to Sri Lanka was aimed at discussing ways that the two countries can build relationships for US private companies to witness opportunities in Sri Lanka.
The US Secretary also commended Sri Lanka’s industries in assisting in PPE manufacturing for the COVID-19 pandemic.
He noted that consistency in transparency and good governance will attract more investors to Sri Lanka.
The Secretary of State also stated that China and the United States have very different visions.
He claimed that the US wants to make sure that the people of Sri Lanka have the capacity to execute sovereign rights to remain independent.
Mike Pompeo also called on Sri Lanka to take steps to ensure accountability, reconciliation and justice.
Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena addressing the media briefing said Sri Lanka’s foreign policy will remain neutral as a sovereign nation.
The Minister said the country’s strategic location will be protected.
Minister Gunawardena added the United States and Sri Lanka will further enhance bilateral ties including economic, defence and research.
Mike Pompeo this morning met with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat for talks. US Ambassador to Sri Lanka Alaina B Teplitz was also present at the discussion.
The US State Secretary said he also intends on visiting the St. Anthony’s Shrine in Kochchikade.
He arrived at the Bandaranaike International Airport around 7.35 last night with a delegation of 36 officials.
Pompeo and the delegation will conclude the official visit and leave for the Maldives at 12.30 this afternoon.