Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi on Wednesday inaugurated a USD 514 million (Rs 42,82,59,66,000) hydropower project in the southeastern region of Sri Lanka which was partly funded by Tehran and was long-delayed due to international sanctions on the oil-rich nation.

This was the first visit by an Iranian president to Sri Lanka since an April 2008 visit by its

then-president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Raisi was received by Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena on his arrival at the southern province’s Mattala International Airport earlier in the day. Tight security was in place with roads being closed for normal traffic as the Iranian president was driven to the project inauguration site where he was met by Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe.
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