Wickremesinghe said the Navy was sent to free the ships following discussions with the president and certain other parties concerned.
The PM was speaking to the media during a meeting with Navy commander Ravindra Wijegunaratne at Temple Trees today (15).
He said the company that owns one of the ships detained at the port has sent a bill for a four million dollar demurrage payment.
At the meeting, Wijegunaratne handed over a report regarding the Hambantota port incident and was told by the PM to establish a Navy camp at the port.
The PM said punishment would be given irrespective of position if someone is found to have caused damage to the property of the port during the incident.
He added that an investigation would be conducted into an alleged assault of a journalist by the Navy commander during the incident, if a complaint is lodged with Hambantota police.
The port area belongs to Hambantota police, not Tangalle police to which the journalist in question has complained, according to him.