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Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS)-Technical Seminar begins Today.

The Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) technical seminar, hosted this time by the Sri Lanka Navy begins today (21st May, 2009).Prime Minister Hon. Rathnasiri Wickramanayaka, the chief guest, inaugurated the seminar amidst a distinguished gathering of invitees at the Cinnamon Grand Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka at 0900hrs.Hon. Rohitha Bogollagama, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Dr. Palitha Kohonna, Secretary of the Foreign Ministry also graced the occasion.

The Commander of the Navy Admiral WKJ Wasantha Karannagoda, Rear Admiral TSG Samarasinghe, Chief of Staff, Rear Admiral DN Dharmaweera, Director General Engineering, Rear Admiral  PLN Obeysinghe, Director General Personnel & Training, Rear Admiral JSK Kolombage Director General Operations and  Rear Admiral  JC Hettigama, Director General Electrical & Electronic Engineering were also present.

The two day Seminar is attended by representatives of eighteen (18) Navies of the Indian Ocean Littoral States and is conducted under the theme ‘Practical Cooperative Mechanisms for Technical Support within the Indian Ocean Region’. The ‘IONS’ came into being in 2008 as a result of deliberations made by the Commanders of Navies around the Indian Ocean, who gathered in India on an invitation extended by the  Chief of Naval Staff of the Indian Navy. The inaugural event was held on the 14th&15th of February the same year.

The hosting of this years’ event in Colombo by Sri Lanka Navy shows the commitment and importance it gives to the ‘IONS’. Incidentally this years’ event comes at a time when the attention of the whole world is drawn towards Sri Lanka as her valiant forces have just succeeded in eliminating the most ruthless terrorist organization in the world, the LTTE.

The seminar will conclude on 22nd May 2009.