23 injured in Sri Lanka in violence over port deal with China

Colombo [Sri Lanka], Jan. 8 : At least 23 people have been injured in clashes between protestors and government supporters at the launch of Southern Development Project, a special industrial zone in Hambantota which many see as federal government's initiative to sell the port and the land to the Chinese investors.

The police used tear gas and water cannons to break up the protesters as they threw rocks at the police and government supporters, reports the Colombo Page.

Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe accompanied by the Ambassador of China to Colombo Yi Xianliang on Saturday launched the Southern Development Project, in which China is a major stake holder.

Wickremesinghe said the Sri Lanka - China Logistics and Industrial Zone (SLCLIZ) to be set up within the 'Ruhunu Economic Development Area' in Hambantota is launched to attract Chinese investments to establish new industries surrounding the Chinese-built Hambanthota Port in a move to create more job opportunities and ways of income for the people in the southern areas and develop the area.

Source: ANI