Dutch Marines will soon begin using the Galle Port OBST (On Board Security
Teams) facility in accordance with an unprecedented agreement recently
finalised between the Sri Lankan government and Netherlands.
The project is meant to provide on board security to the Dutch Merchant
Vessels operating in the Indian Ocean.
"The Netherlands VPDs (Vessel Protection Detachments) are expected to
embark/disembark Dutch Marines as well as store small arms at the OBST facility
in Galle Port in the coming few weeks," media reports quoting a senior Sri
Lankan navy officer said.
Commander of the Sri Lankan Navy Vice Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne
inspected the services being put up at the Galle Port OBST operations centre,
to facilitate the operation.
The Dutch shipping register, containing more than 1,200 merchant vessels,
is considered one of the most modern merchant shipping fleets in the world.
Most of the Dutch shipping companies have increased their operations and agents
like Nedlloyd, Netherland Line, and APL (Netherlands) are some of the prominent
shipping companies that have made increased presence in the Indian Ocean.
The Sri Lankan Navy undertook the facilitation of On Board Security Team
operations since November 2015. Since
then the Sri Lankan Navy has completed 11,105 movements from Galle, Hambantota
and Colombo operations centres and has earned considerable foreign exchange for