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US military meets again in Jaffna to discuss training Sri Lankan troops

A US military delegation held another meeting with the Sri Lankan army in Jaffna, where they discussed the prospects of more training programs between the two militaries this week.

The PACOM Augmentation Team of the Embassy of the United States of America met with the head of the Sri Lankan military in Jaffna, Major General Dharshana Hettiarrachchi.

According to an official military website, the two groups “discussed matters pertaining to the conduct of combined training on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Operations” and “potential future training and assistance programmes and partnership opportunities with the Civil Affairs element of Security Force Headquarters – Jaffna”.

The meeting comes despite criticism over the American military’s engagement with Sri Lanka troops, who stand accused of massacring tens of thousands of Tamils and violating international law in a military offensive that ended in May 2009.

Earlier this month a ranking member of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee concern over the appointment of a Sri Lankan commander played a leading role in the offensive, to chief of staff of the Sri Lankan army, stating that it could impact on the United States’ defence relationship with Colombo.

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