Colombo: Sri Lanka's Defence Secretary Gen. Kamal Gunaratne (Retd) expressed his gratitude to the Indian High Commissioner in Colombo for the support extended by the Indian authorities to douse the fire on vessel X-Press Pearl.

The gratitude was conveyed by the Indian High Commissioner Gopal Baglay in Colombo on Friday as Sri Lanka's Defence Secretary also recalled the long-existing bilateral ties and cooperation between the two countries, Colombo Page reported.

The X-Press Pearl reported an onboard acid leak and caught fire just as it was due to enter the Colombo harbour on May 20. The fire was put out only after 13 days.

Besides X-Press Pearl, Defence Secretary Gunaratne also discussed matters of defence cooperation with the Indian envoy in Sri Lanka.

According to the Sri Lankan news portal, attention was also drawn into the avenues of smooth functioning of long-existing military training exchange between two countries.

Meanwhile, the High Commission in Colombo said that the Indian side held productive discussions with Defence Secretary and other senior officers on furthering the close cooperation between in defence and security spheres.

"High Commissioner held productive discussions with Defence Secretary, Commanders of @srilanka_navy and @airforcelk and other senior officers of @defenceSL on furthering the close cooperation between #India and #SriLanka in defence and security spheres," Indian High Commission said in a tweet on Friday.

The discussions brought out the significance of such cooperation for peace, security, and safety in the shared strategic space and maritime environment, the high Commission added.