The Yuan Wang 5, a ballistic missile and satellite tracking ship in China’s research vessel fleet, will not arrive in Hambantota today, according to the Harbour Master.
He stated that no vessel would be allowed to enter the Hambantota Port without his permission.
The Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry has already requested that the Yuan Wang 5, a ballistic missile and satellite tracking ship in China’s research vessel fleet, be delayed
However, no decision has been made on whether or not this vessel will be permitted to enter the Hambantota Port.
The Yuan Wang 5 left its Chinese port of origin on July 14th and has yet to enter a single port along its route.
The ship has been at sea for about 28 days with no replenishment.
China announced on the 28th of June 2022 that the Yuan Wang 5 would arrive at the Hambantota Port, and the Foreign Ministry granted approval on the 12th of July.
However, on August 8, 2022, Sri Lanka’s Foreign Ministry requested that the ship be delayed in a letter to the Chinese Embassy; however, the Yuan Wang 5 had already entered the Indian Ocean by that time.
However, the Foreign Ministry’s statement did not specify the reason for such a request.
According to recent Indian media reports, Indian authorities have protested the arrival of the Yuan Wang 5, citing security concerns
Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka on Wednesday (10), said NO COMMENT on this.
The Yuan Wang 5 was moving away from its course to Sri Lanka on Wednesday (10) according to vessel trackers; however, the vessel was back on course to Sri Lanka on Thursday (11).
As of Thursday (11) evening, the Yuan Wang 5 was approximately 600 nautical miles from the southern port of Hambantota in the Sea of Sri Lanka.
From the east of Sri Lanka, the ship is now facing the Bay of Bengal.
The Yuan Wang 5 was passing over the Ninety East Ridge, a mid-ocean ridge on the Indian Ocean floor named for its near-parallel strike along the 90th meridian in the centre of the Eastern Hemisphere.
On Tuesday (9) the Yuan Wang 5 altered its course slightly and proceeded slowly over the Ninety East Ridge.
In 2021, a Chinese government survey ship, the Xiang Yang Hong 03, was conducting a search pattern west of Sumatra in the same region of the Indian Ocean.
A Pakistani warship is making its maiden voyage to Pakistan while training with the navies of Cambodia and Malaysia. The ship is scheduled to dock in Colombo from August 12 to 15, 2022.
The Chinese-built Pakistani-guided missile frigate PNS Taimur stopped in Colombo on its way to join the Pakistan Navy in Karachi, and India was also interested in this vessel.
While Sri Lanka allowed the Pakistani guided missile frigate to call at Colombo, it is understood that the Sheikh Hasina government denied the ship permission to call at Chattogram port from August 7-10 after calling at Lumut port in Malaysia.