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Sri Lanka forced to apologise to India over MoD article

The Sri Lankan government was forced to offer an  "unqualified apology" to the Indian Prime Minister and Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, over a derogatory op-ed article that was posted on the Defense Ministry website this week.

See full text of the MoD's article here and accompanying illustration below:

In an apology posted on the Ministry of Defence website on Friday, following the removal of the article, Sri Lanka said:

“An article titled 'How meaningful are Jayalalithaa's love letters to Narendra Modi?' had appeared on our website along with a graphical portrayal of Hon. Prime Minister of India and Hon Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.

The article which had been published without appropriate authorization and not reflecting any official position of the Government of Sri Lanka or Ministry of Defence and Urban Development has since been removed.

We extend an unqualified apology to the Hon Prime Minister of India and Hon Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.”

The Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Jayalalithaa, in a letter to Narendra Modi, condemned visual imagery used in the article as "very trivialised, derogatory and disrespectful in manner,"
reports Colombo Page.

“These are affronts to India which cannot be ignored or lightly brushed aside. The reprehensible visual itself clearly indicates that these are not necessarily the views of the author but of the Sri Lankan Government itself,” Jayalalithaa said, adding that the article contained unwarranted comments about valid serious issues that she had consistently been raising regarding the arrests of fishermen from Tamil Nadu by the Sri Lankan Navy.

"This blatant attempt to ridicule, and trivialize the untiring efforts made by a democratically elected leader to resolve an important livelihood issue of the fishermen of Tamil Nadu by hosting a highly objectionable article prominently on the official website of an important Ministry of a neighbouring country, is completely unacceptable," she further said.