India has been very supportive of Sri Lanka, trying to help in economic crisis: EAM Jaishankar
There was no refugee crisis right now, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said
The Indian government has always been supportive of Sri Lanka and it was trying to help the neighbouring country through its current economic crisis, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Sunday.
Speaking with mediapersons after arriving in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, on a three-day visit, he also said that there was no refugee crisis right now.
"We have been very supportive of Sri Lanka. We are trying to help and we are always very helpful where they are concerned," EAM Jaishankar said.
Responding to a query on India's stand on the crisis in Sri Lanka, he said, "They are right now working through their problems, so we have to wait and see what they do."
When he was asked if there was a refugee crisis, EAM Jaishankar said, "There is no refugee crisis right now."
The comments came a day after Sri Lanka was plunged into an unprecedented political crisis after thousands of angry protestors stormed the official residence of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and home of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. Both have since said that they will resign from their positions.
Anger has mounted over the past several weeks as Sri Lanka fights a severe economic crisis, including acute shortage of food, fuel, medicines, and other essential items.
India has been lending a helping hand to Sri Lanka in this hour of need, providing aid worth over USD 3.5 billion in addition to Lines of Credit for fuel and fertilisers and humanitarian assistance like food and medicines.
On Sunday, India handed over more than 44,000 MT of urea supplied under a credit line extended to Sri Lanka.
Indian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka Gopal Baglay stressed that this latest assistance by India symbolises the continued commitment to support the people of Sri Lanka, including farmers, and bolster the efforts for food security of the country's citizens.