Sri Lanka: Hambantota residents join protest against decision to lease land to Chinese

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

Colombo [Sri Lanka], Dec. 14 (ANI): Residents of Hambanthota, Sri Lanka have joined a protest organised by port workers against the government decision to lease land in the region to the Chinese and entering into a public-private partnership (PPP) with a Chinese company for a USD 1 billion debt-for- equity swap to revive the idling port. The Colombo Page quoted workers as saying that they fear losing their jobs if the Chinese company takes over the port. The Hambantota - Tissa main road has been blocked by the protesters from Mirijjawila. China had asked for 15,000 acres of land in southern Sri Lanka in July for setting up a special economic zone which would create one million jobs. It is the eight successive day of the protest by the workers at the Hambantota port today. The protest was launched by the temporary employees of the Magampura Port Management Company (MPMC) employed at the Hambantota Port asking the government to make them permanent employees. Meanwhile, 12 workers were identified by the police were allegedly involved in damaging the Port's equipment and detaining the two ships. The police said action will be taken against the 12 identified persons. (Ani)