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Governance in disarray

Dec 7 (SL) It is almost a fashion for Sri Lankan political leaders to speak periodically of consensus, cohabitation, bipartisanship and national governments. The idea of a political union between the two main parties has often been romanticised and is permanently in vogue, though nothing concrete has been achieved so far despite the popular support for such an initiative. more..

AHRC against dropping CJ’s impeachment

Dec 7 (SL) The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has said that a call by President Chandrika Kumaratunga to drop an impeachment motion against Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva sadly undermines the process of disciplinary control of senior judicial officers, bringing it down to an issue of political compromise. more..

LTTE clueless as to whom to talk with

Dec 7 (SO) LTTE political wing leader S. P. Thamilselvan has stated that the doors of his organisation are open for negotiations and continuation of the peace process but claimed they were clueless as to whom they should negotiate or talk with. more..

X’mas spoiling Customs work-to-rule ends

Dec 7 (Island) The Christmas-spoiling Customs work-to-rule ended yesterday following talks between Finance Minister K. N. Choksy and the Federation of Joint Trade Unions of the Departments of Customs, Inland and Excise. more..

Cooperate to set up National Govt - President

Dec 7 (IL) President Chandrika Kumaratunga called on all Sri Lankans to cooperate in establishing a national government. "When I addressed the nation recently, I proposed a Government of Reconstruction and Reconciliation purely with the intention of consolidating solidarity among different communities. more..

Giles proves his allround worth

Dec 7 (CI) The cheer from the massed banks of English supporters said it all. When this epic Test match was brought to an end in the fading light, there could be no doubt whatsoever that England had pulled off a stunning achievement in holding out for the draw. more..

Medical neglect in UK hospital kills Sri Lankan anaesthetist

Dec 7 (LD) The medical men and women normally stand out as the crčme of any society who can be called as 'God' in human form because unlike butchers who use the knife to kill, surgeons use their scalpel in an entirely different manner to cut and give life to fellow humans who are suffering and ailing from various physical conditions. more..

Tillekeratne starts to feel the pressure

Dec 7 (Telegraph) At 9.30 this morning England's 16 cricketers were scheduled to fly by helicopter, reportedly a Russian one, from Galle to Kandy in the central hills: a flight potentially as hair-raising as their last-ditch draw in the first Test. more..

Murali a law unto himself in throwing controversy

Dec 7 (Telegraph) The essence of this whole series became clear during the first innings of this first Test at Galle: could England's batsmen counter the genius of Muttiah Muralitharan? But as the top six lunged forward, kicked, smothered, groped in the dark and looked generally befuddled, the drums of controversy were already beating around the ramparts above this old fortress town. more..

Early morning calls for hot days in Galle

Dec 7 (Observer) They have boarded their buses in Bentota, Hikkaduwa and Induruwa and headed for Galle Cricket Club. The stalwarts, who support England on tour - around 3,000 of them are here - have enjoyed themselves, revelling in an epic, unexpected draw. But many of them have had to be stalwarts. more..

Better to solve cohabitation crisis through talks - PM

Dec 7 (TN) Speaking at a meeting held in Puttalam Saturday, Prime Minister, Mr. Ranil Wickremasinghe, said that if the current cohabitation crisis is solved through talks, it would usher in a new political culture, but if the crisis is not resolved, the public would face several difficulties, more..

Balasingham: LTTE seeks ‘new, creative’ relationship with India

Dec 7 (TN) Asserting the importance of the role of the LTTE in bringing about peace and stability to Sri Lanka, the movement’s theoretician, Mr Anton Balasingham, Saturday urged the Indian government to rethink and re-orientate its approach towards the organisation. more..

SLMC to submit administration proposals

Dec 7 (TN) The SLMC, a constituent of the ruling United National Front government Saturday announced that it would submit its response to the government’s proposal for an interim administrative structure for the Northeast by the end of December. more..

India - Sri Lanka ferry service proposal runs into rough weather

Dec 7 (UNI) The ambitious plans of commencing a ferry service between Tuticorin and Colombo seems to have run into rough weather as the Tamil Nadu government officials raised their reservations regarding the security issues involved in the project, reliable sources in the shipping ministry told UNI on Saturday. more..

Gunshot injures a soldier

Dec 7 (SLA) An Army soldier who was in picket duties had been shot by an unidentified group while he was going to collect their meals from the neighbouring detachment in the general area of PAHALATHOPPUR, about 20 km. south of TRINCOMALEE town on 06 December 2003 around noon. more..

LTTE, not Sri Lankan Navy, captured 32 fishermen, says Jaya

Dec 7 (PTI) Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, today alleged that it was the LTTE which had captured the 32 Indian fishermen, who had allegedly strayed into Sri Lankan waters and not the island's Navy, as was earlier believed. more..

Warn LTTE, Jaya tells PM

Dec 7 (NT) Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today asked the Central government to issue a stern warning to the LTTE not to indulge in any act of provocation. Jayalalithaa has demanded this in a letter to the Prime Minister A B Vajpayee written in the wake of reports that the 32 Indian fishermen who were hitherto thought to be taken into custody by the Sri Lankan Navy have in fact been captured by the LTTE. more..

PA-UNF stuck on Defence

Dec 7 (ST) Intense talks between the UNF and PA to resolve the ongoing political crisis to pave the way for resuming the peace process have boiled down to one critical issue - the return of the defence portfolio to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's government. more..

Jayalalithaa fishes for Katchatheevu

Dec 7 (MD) Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has renewed her appeal to the Government of India for “taking Katchatheevu on a lease in perpetuity” following frequent incidents of Tamil Nadu fishermen being taken into custody by the Sri Lankan Navy off the Rameswaram coast. more..

Kadirgamar blames 'secret deals' for loss

Dec 7 (PTI) Sri Lanka's former Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar has alleged that "deal making" was the cause of his defeat at elections for the Commonwealth's top job despite pledges of support from African states. more..

Tillekeratne asks team to polish its act

Dec 7 (AP) Sri Lankan captain Hashan Tillekeratne today said he expects an improved performance from his players in the second cricket Test against England, after the tourists were dominated but forced a draw here in their first match. more..

Jail equips inmates with garment-making skills

Dec 7 (CNA) One of Sri Lanka's oldest prisons has started a novel training programme for its inmates. The prisoners are being equipped with skills so that they can get jobs once they finish serving their sentence. The programme is so successful it is now being extended to other prisons. more..

Sri Lanka heads for make-or-break cohabitation talks

Dec 7 (AFP) Sri Lanka's president and the prime minister will make a last-ditch attempt this week to try and end their month-old power struggle that is risking a peace bid with Tamil rebels, officials said. more..

Sri Lanka 'A' in driver's seat

Dec 7 (Rediff) Tilana Kandamby slammed a lucky 60 off 76 balls before medium pacer Tharanga Lakshita grabbed three wickets to put Sri Lanka-A in the driver's seat on the second day of the third 'Test' match against India-A at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai on Sunday. more..

LTTE seek to mend fences with India

Dec 7 (AFP) Sri Lanka's Tiger rebels who are outlawed in India after being blamed for the assassination of former premier Rajiv Gandhi are seeking to mend fences with New Delhi, a pro-rebel website reported Sunday. more..

Intelligent Farmers

Dec 7 (LBO) A pilot project to automate wholesale agro-prices at the Dambulla and Meegoda economic zones takes off this month, paving the way for an eventual electronic produce exchange. The Govi Gnana System (GGS) brings all players – farmers, traders, bankers, and brokers – onto a common platform, creating an efficient spot market. more..

PM says political crisis must end to pursue peace

Dec 7 (Xinhua) Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Sunday that early resolution of the current political impasse is crucial to further the peace process with the Tamil Tiger rebels. Wickremesinghe was addressing a series of political rallies in the rural Kurunegala district in the northwest of the country on Sunday. more..

Monitoring Process Against LTTE Intensified

Dec 7 (AT) America and India have suddenly intensified their monitoring process of LTTE, alleged to be a ruthless Sri Lankan Tamil rebel outfit, while continuing without any change with the proscription, which is already in place. more..

TNA parliamentarians meet Kinniya Muslim religious leaders

Dec 8 (TN) TNA parliamentarians Mr.R.Sampanthan and Mr.K.Thurairetnasingham Sunday held discussions with the leaders of the Kinniya Jamiathul Ulama Council (Muslim Theologians) at the office of the Kinniya Police station in an effort to restore normalcy in the division hit by several incidents of violence since November 26. more..

Lanka shies away from anti-corruption plan

Dec 8 (DN) Asian countries have raised questions about Sri Lanka's non-participation in endorsing an Action Plan for the Asia Pacific region to fight corruption, at the fourth regional meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) more..

J'pura varsity VC's removal illegal

Dec 8 (Island) President Chandrika Kumaratunga's action of removing Prof. D.S.Epitawatte from the office of Vice Chancellor of the Sri Jayewardenepura University is illegal and violates the existing University Act, university sources said yesterday. more..

UNESCO pledges support to protect Sri Lanka’s cultural heritages

Dec 8 (IL) UNESCO today pledged to support Sri Lanka to protect its cultural heritages. UNESCO has made arrangements to declare seven places in the island as world heritages. Cultural Advisor Ricardo L. Favis said that Sri Lanka should be proud of its achievements. more..

LTTE know nothing about legislation - PM

Dec 8 (IL) Prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe reiterates that a political consensus should be arrived among major parties in the south for the continuation of the peace process. Addressing a public meeting in Kalpitiya, he added that the government has told the LTTE that they should deviate from the separate state concept to discuss the other matters, including political negotiations to the ethnic conflict. more..

Youth Forum to explain ISGA proposals

Dec 8 (TN) “The Interim Self Governing Authority proposal of the LTTE has several good aspects, but some people who have only a cursory glance at the proposal are conducting a malicious campaign against it. It is our duty to explain the proposals to the youths of this country,” said Mr. Wimal Dharmasiri, more..

Protesting minister blocks military vehicles in Jaffna

Dec 8 (TN) Minister for Hindu Affairs, Mr. T. Maheswaran, blocked military vehicles on Palaly Road, one of the main traffic arteries of Jaffna, Monday in protest against the Sri Lanka army for refusing to let him visit Keerimalai, a temple village inside the peninsula’s garrisoned northwest sector, on Sunday. more..

550 Muslim youths for police project frozen

Dec 8 (LT) The decision the government had taken to recruit 550 Muslim youths to the police service on a priority basis for the security of the Muslims in the Eastern Province has been temporarily stopped. more..

Clash at Kelaniya University

Dec 8 (LT) Six students were hurt in a clash between two factions of students in Kelaniya University. The clash had occurred at mid night after a social to welcome freshers. A group of students had surrounded the office of the Students’ Council and attacked it. more..

A young boy escapes from LTTE

Dec 8 (SLA) A young boy who was forcibly conscripted by LTTE has surrendered to SITTANDY Army camp while he was been taken to KARAWA LTTE camp on a motorcycle on 07 December 2003 around 3.30 p.m. more..

Navy arrests Indian trawlers poaching

Dec 8 (SLA) Three Indian fishing trawlers and eleven persons poaching in Sri Lankan waters were arrested by Naval troops in the general area of west of KAREITIVU on 06 December 2003 around 10.30 p.m. more..

PM’s assurance to Muslims

Dec 8 (TP) Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Saturday assured the Muslim population living in country’s North and East that despite certain obstructions, the government was trying to give a better life to the Muslims in that region. more..

Five parties favour PA-JVP alliance

Dec 8 (TP) FIVE of the seven political parties affiliated to the main opposition People’s Alliance voted in favour of a PA-JVP partnership at the PA executive meeting on Thursday, newspapers said. more..

Sri Lanka candidate "let down" by African states over Commonwealth post

Dec 8 (AFP) Sri Lanka's defeated candidate for the post of Commonwealth secretary general was pushed into the fray by African states that failed to deliver their promised votes, a report said here Sunday. more..

LTTE warns Int'l plyers not to impose systems on them

Dec 8 (G2L) The political advisor to the LTTE, Anton Balasingham advised the “international community” not try to impose political systems of their liking on the Tamil people of Sri Lanka more..

No regrets - Kadirgamar

Dec 8 (Gulf) Former foreign minister Lakshman Kadirgamar said that he had no regrets for contesting – and losing – the election for the post of Commonwealth secretary-general on Friday at the heads of government (CHOGM) summit in Abuja, and thanked India and South Africa for backing him. more..

England face more spin trouble on Murali's home turf

Dec 8 (AFP) Sri Lanka go into the second Test against England here from Wednesday hoping Muttiah Muralitharan will deliver the knockout punch on his home ground. The star off-spinner claimed 11 wickets in the opening Test of the three-match series at Galle last week more..

Lankan War Of Words

Dec 8 (C365) The England and Sri Lankan coaches both feel they got the better of the other in the drawn first Test in Galle over the weekend. The Galle spectators were witness to a tense and dramatic finish to the first Test, when Sri Lanka's spinners attacked England's tailenders in a race against bad light and impending rain. more..

JVP ultimatum on alliance

Dec 8 (DM) In a climate of uncertainty prevailing in the political scenario of the country the politburo of the JVP has taken a strong decision to abandon the proposed alliance with the Sri Lanka Freedom Party if the SLFP failed to give a specific date to sign the MoU at today's meeting between the two parties, more..

Sri Lankan Army Chief to visit LoC in J&K

Dec 8 (HT) The Commander of the Sri Lankan Army, Lt Gen Lionel Balagalle, would be visiting the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir on Monday as part of his four day official visit to India, defence sources told Hindustan Times here. more..

Indian Tamils get Lanka rights, but equality remains elusive

Dec 8 (OW) Last week, more than 170,000 Tamils of Indian origin in Sri Lanka got citizenship after a 40-year wait, but analysts say greater efforts are needed for the upliftment of the underprivileged community. The 1.5 million-strong community has been battling for identity for the last 40 years. more..

Sri Lanka detains 11 Indian fishermen

Dec 8 (PTI) The Sri Lankan navy has detained another 11 Indian fishermen who were allegedly poaching in the island's territorial waters, officials said in Colombo on Monday. The fishermen, who were in three boats, were taken into custody on Sunday near the northern islet of Kayts, officials said. more..