Sri Lanka plans new defence structure

June 06, 2008 (LBO) – The Sri Lankan government said it wants to introduce a new defence structure, including a joint chiefs of staff committee, for the ‘higher defence management’, to ensure better joint planning and operations by the armed forces. New laws are to be drafted to create the structure under proposals prepared by the office of strategic affairs of the defence and public security ministry, information minister Anura Yapa told reporters.

“The primary aim of the proposed legislation would be to provide for stable, efficient, transparent and accountable higher defence management and public security management, the effective strategic direction of the armed forces, and the joint operation of the armed forces,” a government statement said.

New organisations planned under the changes include a defence council under the defence minister, a joint chiefs of staff committee chaired by a chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, and a strategic planning board and defence selection and oversight board chaired by the secretary to the defence ministry.

It would also have a public security planning board chaired by the secretary to the public security ministry.

An ‘integrated defence staff’ within the defence ministry is also envisaged