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Sri Lanka appoints first Tamil Navy chief after 4 decades

Sri Lanka

Colombo: Rear Admiral Travis Sinniah was on Friday appointed as the chief of Sri Lanka’s naval forces, making him the first from the Tamil community to head the Navy since the brutal civil war erupted in the country 45 years ago.

Sinniah, who played a decisive role in the destruction of the LTTE warships in deep sea during the height of the civil war, was appointed as the Navy chief by President Maithripala Sirisena.

His services will be effective from August 22.

Sinniah succeeds Vice Admiral Ravi Wijegunaratne who has retired.

He is the second Tamil to head the Lankan Navy after Rajan Kadirgamar, who was the commander in the late 1960s.

Sinniah is the first from the Tamil community to head the Navy since the outbreak of the civil war in the north and east of the island in 1972.

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