Navy comes to the aid of 104 distressed Myanmar nationals in Sri Lanka’s waters

Sri Lanka Navy rendered assistance to rescue 104 distressed Myanmar nationals aboard a passenger craft in Sri Lanka’s waters about 3.5 nautical miles north of Veththalakerni this morning (18th December 2022). The distressed craft is reported to have trespassed into island’s territorial waters last night (17th December), following a mechanical failure while it was carrying these people from Myanmar to Indonesia.

Upon receipt of the distress call by the Operations Room of the Northern Naval Command, the Navy on 17th December rushed SLNS Udara as well as Fast Attack Craft P 411 and P497 of the 04th Fast Attack Flotilla attached to the Northern Naval Command for the rescue of these distressed people, to the sea area where the incident was reported.

In rough sea condition, the Navy made a strenuous effort and rescued those 104 Myanmar nationals who were aboard the non-operational craft and the group of people was brought to the Kankasanthurai Harbour and looked into their basic requirements. Meanwhile, the group of people will be handed over to relevant authorities for onward action.

In accordance with Sri Lanka's international obligations as an island nation to the conventions such as International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea 1974 – SOLAS and International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue 1979, the Navy remains ever alert to assist maritime and fishing communities in distress in Sri Lanka’s Search and Rescue Region.