Vice Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe assumes Duties as Navy Commander
President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri
Lanka and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces His Excellency Mahinda
Rajapaksa has been pleased to appoint Vice Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe
as the Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy with effect from today, the 15th
of July 2009.
Vice Admiral Samarasinghe is the 16th Navy Commander
in the Sri Lanka Navy's illustrious history which spans over 59 years.
Prior to being made the Navy Commander, he held the post of Chief of
Staff of the Navy and was promoted to the present rank upon his
appointment as the Commander of the Navy.
Vice Admiral TSG Samarasinghe having joined the Sri
Lanka Navy in 1974 as an Officer Cadet won the "Sword of Honour" of the
4th intake at the Naval & Maritime Academy Trincomalee. He also won the
Best International Midshipman award at Britannia Royal Naval College,
Dartmouth, UK in 1976 along with the prestigious appointment of
Divisional Sub Lieutenant. Vice Admiral Samarasinghe is a Specialist
Navigator graduated from Navigation and Direction school INS Venduruthy
in India securing the 1st place in order of merit.
He has held a number of key appointments both afloat
and ashore. His sea commands include Short Patrol Craft, Long Patrol
Craft, Fast Attack Craft (one of the first two Dovra Israel craft to
join the SLN fleet in 1985), Fast Gun Boats and the Surveillance Command
Tender and Surveillance Command Ship (Then Flag Ship). He counts over 7
years of sea time out of which over 4 1/2 years in command at sea. He
has commanded an operational shore base in the North and been Commandant
and Training Commander of two premier training establishments in
addition to holding key Staff and Deputy Director/Director appointments
at Naval Headquarters.
Having served as the Deputy Area Commander of Northern
and Eastern Naval Areas during operationally active periods and also the
Southern Naval Area, he was appointed Commander of the Southern Naval
Area in 2002. He has the distinction of being the first Director General
Services (2004) whilst concurrently holding the appointments of Director
Naval Projects & Plans, Naval Assistant to Commander of the Navy and
Principal Staff Officer of the Joint Operations Headquarters under the
Chief of Defence Staff. He has led Naval Delegations to India, Russia,
Israel and USA (1995 - 2006) on bilateral issues.
In addition to being a distinguished graduate of the
Naval Staff College (Class 38) from Naval War College, Newport, Rhode
Island, USA in 1991, Vice Admiral Samarasinghe is an award winning
distinguished graduate from the prestigious National Defence College,
New Delhi in 2005. (45th Course).
His award winning thesis on "Strategy to Defeat
Maritime Terrorism" at National Defence College, Delhi and the seminar
paper on Indo - Sri Lanka "Sustainable Cooperative Security Challenges
and Options" at National Maritime Foundation, India are published
He is a recipient of 05 commendation letters from four
Commanders of the Navy (1977 to 2006).
He was also selected to be a member of Presidential
and Prime Ministerial delegations on state visits to Libya (2009) and
Indonesia (2006) respectively.
With the start of the humanitarian operations to
liberate the East and North he was made the Acting Commander Northern
Naval Area (Dec 2005), Director General Operations - NHQ (2006),
Commander Eastern Naval Area (2007) and Commander Northern Naval Area
(2008). During the period when the LTTE floating arms warehouses were
destroyed he was the Director General Operations and Commander Eastern
Naval Area from 2006 to 2008. He was elevated to the post of Chief of
Staff in May 2009.
He is a recipient of Rana Sura Padakkama (RSP) for
gallantry at sea, Vishista Seva Vibhushanaya (VSV) in recognition of his
devotion and dedication to the country with an unblemished career record
and Uttama Seva Padakkama (USP) for meritorious and distinguished
Courtesy: Navy Media