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Tense situation at Hambantota Port

A tense situation has been reported at the Hambantota Port as navy personnel intervened to disperse workers who are protesting and blocking ship movements. 

The agitation has reportedly also hindered navy operations from the port and as a result navy personnel had proceeded to remove the workers blocking the shipping passage. 

Employees of the Magampura Port Management Company (MPMC) launched a strike demanding that they be recruited to the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA). Around 483 of the employees also engaged in a protest fast. 

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says he made a request to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday to intervene and resolve the issues of the protesting workers. The Prime Minister had immediately called Minister Malik Samarawickrama on the phone and asked him to resolve that issue, he said. 

The protest was launched just days before a memorandum of understanding was signed between the Government of Sri Lanka and China Merchant Holdings Limited (CMHL) on the framework for the revitalization of the Hambantota Harbour.
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