Sri Lanka – Pakistan Relations: Search for Strategic Partnership

FPRC Journal, Vol. 2, 2014, pp. 119-129

M. Mayilvaganan, Assistant Professor, National Institute of Advanced Studies

Responding to the tensions with India on Tamil question, Colombo has been bolstering ties with other players including Pakistan from time to time. Indeed, Colombo and Islamabad have enjoyed a close and mutually beneficial relationship since their independence in 1948. Their partnerships are evidently comprehensive: economic, political, and sociocultural and defence. Pakistan has long provided Sri Lanka with major military, technical, and economic assistance since 1980s, including the offering the service of Pakistan Air Force pilots in the operation against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). In fact, analysts were of views that growing relations between the Sri Lanka and Pakistan (other than Sri Lanka‘s closer ties with China) had ultimately prompted India to push for even stronger hard-line policy against its southern neighbour, Sri Lanka.

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