Posted on 05.17.2019 by Chandana Sirimalwatte in Local News with 0 Comments
Former US Ambassador Robert O. Blake says he delivered a lecture on the topic of ‘US Foreign Policy Towards China and South Asia & What it Means for Sri Lanka’ while he was here in the island doing a little bit of business.
Blake, in an interview with Daily Mirror, expressed his views on the issues of geo-politics in the Indian Ocean, pointing out the importance of Lanka’s strategic positioning in the region and its benefits to the country as a whole. A veteran of diplomatic affairs he served as the Ambassador to Sri Lanka between 2006 and 2009 during a time the country was hit heavily by the war. It should not be forgotten that it was with Blake, Gotabhaya Rajapaksha signed the military assistance agreement ACSA, under which US armed forces are busy doing various military exercises in the Indian Ocean. Between 2009 to 2013, he served as the Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, which means he was the No 1 to make sure the the US interests are assured during the time of war at its peak.
Blake during the interview with Daily Mirror, answered the journalist saying that his lecture on Geo-Political Affairs is just another task while he was engaged in a business mission. Here we quote the questions & answers-
How do you sum up your programme here in Sri Lanka?
I am here to do a little bit of business. Once that was scheduled, I received an invitation to speak from Milinda Moragoda of the Pathfinder Foundation. It is an important time for Sri Lanka.
These days, foreigners stay away from Sri Lanka. But, you are an exception.
As I said, I had a business commitment for a client. As you know, I was the Ambassador for Sri Lanka during the civil war- from 2006 to 2009. So I am accustomed to a bit of risk. I also think that, from all I have been told, the security forces have done a good job of rounding up a lot of the suspects.
(Daily Mirror Wednesday 15th of May)