The political issue of SOFAs is complicated by the fact that many host countries have mixed feelings about foreign bases on their soil, and calls to renegotiate SOFA are often combined with calls for foreign troops to withdraw completely. While the United States and host countries generally agree on what a crime is, many U.S. observers believe that the host country`s justice systems give defendants much weaker protection than the United States and that the courts of the host country may be subject to popular pressure to render a guilty verdict; In addition, U.S. soldiers who have been sent abroad should not be forced to give up the rights conferred on them by the Bill of Rights. On the other hand, observers from the host country, who have no local equivalent to the Bill of Rights, often believe that it is an unequivocal excuse to demand special treatment and that they resemble the extraterritorial agreements demanded by Western countries during colonialism. A host country where such a mindset is prevalent, South Korea, itself has strength in Kyrgyzstan and has negotiated a SOFA that grants its soldiers full immunity from prosecution by Kyrgyz authorities for any crime, far beyond the privileges that many South Koreans have challenged in their country`s SOFA with the United States.  The agreement establishes rules for the benefit of both countries – «no base, no permanent presence of US troops,» Teplitz said, adding that Sri Lanka has the right to allow or deny any entry of people, ships and aircraft. The agreement also requires waivers from inspections, licenses, customs duties, taxes and other restrictions or fees imposed on Sri Lanka, as well as freedom of embarkation and inspection, meaning that no local law enforcement or military authority, including the Sri Lankan Navy or coast guard, would have a say in US military vessels or their troops, nor would they be subject to local laws while they are in Sri Lankan territory. However, Sri Lankans remain skeptical. Part of the problem lies in the fact that there is «little information in the public» about the «specifics» of the agreements. The conflict in their opinions on this matter could be the result of the persistent friction between the two leaders.
After being elected president and overthrown Mr. Rajapaksa, Mr. Sirisena appointed Mr. Wickremesinghe as prime minister. After a financial scandal in which M. Wickremesinghe tried to implicate Mr Rajapaksa`s family, as President Sirisena feared losing the support of a coalition party that would overthrow his government. He announced that Mr Rajapaksa would become Prime Minister and Mr Wickremesinghe would be removed from office. Mr Wickremesinghe initiated legal proceedings against this decision and was reinstated following decisions of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal in December 2018. The current disagreement between the two over SoFA appears to be a continuation of this feud.
A SOFA is intended to clarify under what conditions the foreign army is allowed to operate. .