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Cease Lease

Nov 24 (LBO) Attempts through the budget to force leasing companies to pay tax could make leasing unattractive and uncompetitive according to the industry. Government in its budget 2004 announced that leased assets would be taxed at their market value when being transferred to the lessee or the party obtaining the lease. more..

Canadian paramedics donate medical equipment to North

Nov 24 (TN) The Emergency Medical Service (EMS) Unit in Toronto, Canada, has donated medical equipment and medicine used in emergency surgery, worth 30 million Rupees, to the government hospitals in Vavuniya, Mannar and Kilinochchi, sources said. more..

Two Muslims killed in Kinniya

Nov 24 (TN) Two Muslim civilians were killed by unknown assailants in two separate incidents in the Kinniya division in Trincomalee district, security sources said. The first incident took place at Faizal Nagar on Sunday night at about 9 p.m. and the other at Kachchaikoditivu on Monday early morning around 2 a.m, sources added. more..

International and corporate pressure for a political compromise

Nov 24 (wsws) As the political crisis in Sri Lanka drags into its fourth week, heavy pressure is being brought to bear by the United States, the European Union (EU), India and Japan on President Chandrika Kumaratunga and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to patch-up some sort of compromise. more..

Stocks fall on budget tax proposal

Nov 24 (Reuters) Stocks ended lower on Monday in light volumes on concerns about a budgetary proposal to tax trading profits and fears about the island's political stability. The key Colombo all-share index closed down a provisional 1.78 percent, or 22.05 points, at 1,219.24. more..

Chandrika warned against national government

Nov 24 (Gulf) The Marxist JVP has warned President Chandrika Kumaratunga that formation of a national government with the support of the ruling UNF government would endanger the president's political future and give a clear advantage to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. more..

Military put on high alert: LTTE celebrates 'heroes week'

Nov 24 (Dawn) The Sri Lankan government put its military on high alert this week in Jaffna as unrest is expected as the LTTE prepares to celebrate its "heroes week" to coincide with the birthday of Velupillai Prabhakaran on the 26th of November. more..

Work is torture for Sri Lanka maids

Nov 24 (BBC) What makes Kusuma cry is not the memory of repeated assaults but the look on her children's faces when they saw her in hospital. "After three months, I asked Madam for my salary and she started to beat me with iron bars and wooden sticks," the maid explains of her time in Saudi Arabia. more..

No Tamil 'Eelam', please

Nov 24 (NT) When President Chandrika Kumaratunga stunned her country on 4 November by sacking three Cabinet Ministers, suspending Parliament and deploying troops around Colombo, the capital, many described the move as one endangering the 'fragile' peace' process with the LTTE. more..

Chandrika allies protest Patten-Prabhakaran meet

Nov 24 (PTI) A hard-line nationalist group, supported by an influential section of Sri Lanka President Chandrika Kumaratunga's People's Alliance, today protested European Union leader Chris Patten's scheduled meeting with LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran. more..

Jan-Sept trade deficit down on exports

Nov 24 (Reuters) Increased exports of manufactured garments helped the island cut its trade deficit during the first nine months of the year, the central bank said on Monday. The deficit from January to September fell slightly to $940 million from $948 million in the same period last year, more..

10 cell phones seized from jail

Nov 24 (AFP) Guards seized 10 mobile telephones from a Sri Lankan jail as part of a campaign to stop prisoners using the phones to conduct criminal activities, officials said Monday. The weekend clean-up at Negombo Prison, more..

Buddhist television network on anvil

Nov 24 (TP) Plans are under way to launch Sri Lanka’s first ever Buddhist Television (BTV) network with a countrywide reach by March 2004. It said several Buddhist prelates and local and international Buddhists are engaged in this project aimed at portraying the true picture of Buddhism and the Buddhist philosophy. more..

Ceylinco and Janashakthi apply to register as foreign investments in Maldives

Nov 24 (HNS) Ceylinco Insurance and Janashakthi Insurance have applied to the Maldives’ Trade Ministry to register as foreign investments, the two companies revealed. Ceylinco’s local agents are Islanders Maldives while Janashakthi is represented here by Umet. more..

Peace process: Premier sees need for joint effort with PA

Nov 24 (DM) Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said that to achieve long-lasting peace and stability in the country, a resolution of the differences of the two major parties was required. The Premier made this observation on Saturday in Padaviya, after unveiling the pinnacle of the newly constructed dagoba more..

Grenade attack on vegetable lorry kills one

Nov 24 (SLA) A grenade attack, directed at a lorry carrying vegetables from DAMBULLA towards KINNIYA area killed one civilian inside the lorry and injured three others in the general area of SURANGAL, about 14 km southwest of TRINCOMALEE town during early hours on Monday (24). more..

Grenade kills one Muslim and injures two civilians

Nov 24 (SLA) One Muslim was killed and two others received injuries when an unidentified group threw a hand grenade at them while they were in the general area of KINNIYA, about 10 km. southwest of TRINCOMALEE on 23 November 2003 around 8.15 p.m. more..

Civilian penalized by LTTE for his refusal

Nov 24 (SLA) A civilian, who refused to give his tractor for LTTE work, has been beaten badly by LTTE men at ARIYAMPATHI office on 22 November 2003 around 10.00 a.m., states a complaint made to KATTANKUDY Police. more..

Eelam maps, flags, unauthorized structures, etc not yet removed

Nov 24 (SLA) Regardless of the assurances given to the SLMM, the LTTE has failed to honour its commitments by way of erecting Eelam maps with LTTE crest and obstructive cut-outs causing inconvenience to the public, hoisting of LTTE flags, etc. more..

2 Muslims killed, 6 hurt in grenade attacks

Nov 24 (AP) Grenade attacks killed two Muslims and wounded six others in northeastern Sri Lanka ahead of the Tamil Tiger rebels' annual celebrations to honor comrades who died in the country's civil war. more..

Proposed EU Meeting with LTTE Chief Annoys Island

Nov 24 (OW) European Union External Affairs Commissioner Chris Patten's decision to visit controversial LTTE chief Velupillai Pirabhakaran on his birthday - November 26 - during a three-day visit which begins Tuesday - has sparked a major controversy in Sri Lanka. more..

India 'A' gain lead against Lanka 'A'

Nov 24 (PTI) Riding on half centuries by three middle-order batsmen, India 'A' today gained a 60-run first innings lead over Sri Lanka 'A' but negated the advantage somewhat after losing six wickets on the action-packed second day of the four-day match at Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad. more..

Lankan PM expresses grief over Maran's death

Nov 24 (PTI) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe on Monday expressed his grief over the death of Union Minister Murasoli Maran, who passed away in Chennai on Sunday evening following "multiple organ system failure". more..

Angry crowd, SLA face-off defused in Mannar

Nov 25 (TN) A showdown between Sri Lanka army and a large crowd of angry people was averted in Mannar Monday night after the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission persuaded troops garrisoned at the local co-operative society building to return a Heroes’ Day memorial depiction the soldiers had removed from the town centre. more..

“Defense and ceasefire must flow from single authority”-TNA

Nov 25 (TN) “It is the considered view of the Tamil people and of the fifteen Members of Parliament of the TNA that the responsibility on the part of the government to sustain the ceasefire, and to continue with the peace process, must flow from one single authority," said the TNA parliamentary group leader, Mr.R.Sampanthan, more..

Presidential Task Force to formulate free media policy

Nov 25 (Island) President Chandrika Kumaratunga has decided to appoint a Presidential Task Force to formulate a Free Media National Policy accommodating news and views pertaining to all quarters. This Task Force is to comprise, veteran journalists, university dons, and competent personnel in the field of electronic media. more..

Free TV, radio time for political parties

Nov 25 (DN) Each political party will get between 15 and 30 minutes free of charge per month for airing documentaries, interviews, speeches, group discussions and statements on their activities, Mass Communication Ministry Secretary Tilak Ranaviraja said yesterday. more..

Individual Exemption

Nov 25 (LBO) The government may backtrack slightly from its original stance and exempt individuals from the equity trading tax, treasury officials say. Meanwhile Lakmali Nanayakkara that foreign investors would be exempt as Sri Lanka has double taxation treaties with most countries, to prevent firms from being taxed twice in two jurisdictions. more..

Rough Ride

Nov 25 (LBO) Business is booming but the hotels sector is trying to hang on to the good times a little longer, by warding off a looming electricity price hike. The sector is trying to sidestep a proposed change to the electricity tariff structure that would see their energy costs shoot up by half. more..

SLA, LTTE meet again over Jaffna Heroes’ Day

Nov 25 (TN) LTTE and the Sri Lanka army met again Tuesday to resolve persisting friction over the Great Heroes’ Day observations in Jaffna. Speaking to the press after the meeting, Maj. Gen. Sarath Fonseka said his troops won’t interfere in the Great Heroes’ Day arrangements in the peninsula. more..

NECORD provides new life to Varothaya Nagar School

Nov 25 (TN) The Varothaya Nagar Barathi Vidiyalayam in the suburb of Trincomalee town, which has a history of being occupied by both the IPKF and thereafter by the Sri Lanka Army and Police, has now got a new two storied building at a cost of nearly 4 .6 million rupees under the NECORD. more..

Troops with SLMM remove provocative Eelam cut-outs

Nov 25 (SLA) Troops, accompanied by SLMM and the Police were compelled to remove LTTE’s Eelam cut-outs erected in the general town areas of MANNAR and MURUNKAN on 24 November 2003 around 8. 45 p.m. after LTTE failed to dismantle them irrespective of their assurances given to the SLMM. more..

Hand grenade thrown at refugee camp

Nov 25 (SLA) An unidentified group has thrown a hand grenade at a refugee camp and set fire to three cadjan huts on 24 November 2003 in the general area of FAIZAL NAGAR, about 12 km southwest of TRINCOMALEE. more..

One more Muslim succumbs to injuries

Nov 25 (SLA) One more Muslim civilian, who fell victim to a hand grenade attack in the general area of SURANGAL, about 14 km southwest of TRINCOMALEE during wee hours on Monday (24) while he along with three others was transporting vegetables in a lorry, succumbed to his injuries late in the evening. more..

French experts to train police

Nov 25 (TP) A team of specialists have arrived from France to train local police on ways of combating crime. This came as the police department, now under the control of President, launched a fresh campaign to crack down on rising crime and seize a large number of unauthorized weapons in the hands of the public. more..

The enigma of Prabhakaran

Nov 25 (BBC) From a secret jungle base in the north-east of Sri Lanka, Velupillai Prabhakaran heads the LTTE. He has a reputation as a fearless and ruthless guerrilla leader, and under his leadership, the LTTE, or Tamil Tigers, have become a highly-disciplined and highly-motivated guerrilla force. more..

Lanka PM greets Jaya

Nov 25 (NT) The Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe today telephoned Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa to congratulate her on her victory in the 'TANSI Land deal' case. more..

President Kumaratunga sends condolences to Russia

Nov 25 (PSL) President Kumaratunga in a letter of condolence to the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin expressed deepest sympathies on behalf of Sri Lanka, “to the injured, to the relatives of the deceased and those who witnessed this traumatic event”. more..

Prime Minister of Nepal here tomorrow

Nov 25 (PSL) Prime Minister of Nepal Surya Bahadur Thapa is to make a two-day official visit to Sri Lanka beginning tomorrow, November 26. He will be accompanied by a twelve-member delegation. Prime Minister Thapa is the outgoing chairperson of SAARC. more..

“We should ensure every Muslim in Sri Lanka a peaceful life with equal rights”- President

Nov 25 (PSL) “On this holy day of Ramazan to restore a peaceful life for all our Muslim brethren, we should heal the pain of mind of the Muslims who have been displaced from their homes in the North East. more..

Tigers’ participation in polls will create new complications

Nov 25 (TS) The Tigers talked to Sri Lanka’s Wickremesinghe administration over six rounds spread over 22 days. Not less importantly, they had also held four rounds of talks spreading over five days with the PA during 1994-95. more..

Sri Lanka school battles war scars

Nov 25 (Reuters) The bullet holes in the walls at St Patrick's school in the Jaffna peninsula are slowly being covered over, but it may take a little longer for the students to recover from years of war. more..

Sri Lanka protests over EU envoy

Nov 25 (BBC) European Union envoy Chris Patten is in Sri Lanka on a controversial visit, that includes meeting Tamil Tiger rebel leader, Velupillai Prabhakaran. Over 100 protesters outside Mr Patten's hotel burnt his effigy on Tuesday and called for him to abandon his planned meeting with Mr Prabhakaran. more..

Tamil parties push for UNF, PA bipartisan consensus

Nov 25 (DM) The Tamil National Alliance yesterday urged the President and the Prime Minister to resolve the political impasse without delay because the peace process runs the risk of being impaired due to the lack of clarity and uncertainty. more..

Jet plans 17 flights a week to Sri Lanka

Nov 25 (Rediff) Jet Airways is planning to start 17 flights a week from India to Sri Lanka, as and when the government grants permission. "We are planning daily flights from Chennai and five flights each from Mumbai and Bangalore once the government approves the flights under the open skies policy," more..

Colombo rail project: DMRC officials invited

Nov 25 (Rediff) The Sri Lankan government has invited the officials of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation to study the feasibility of building a mass rapid transit system in Colombo. E Sreedharan, managing director of DMRC, told reporters in Kochi that he would visit Colombo in next few days to evaluate the possibility of constructing a metro rail there. more..

Japan's J-Power gets power plant consulting deal

Nov 25 (DJ) Japan's Electric Power Development Co., or J-Power, said Tuesday it has signed a six-year contract with the government of Sri Lanka to provide consulting services for a hydroelectric power plant project in the south of that country. more..

President approves pact with JVP

Nov 25 (Bloomberg) President Chandrika Kumaratunga, who agreed to form an alliance with fellow opposition party Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna last week, has approved the final document for the pact, her spokesman said. more..

India should help Lanka fight LTTE "unconditionally", says JVP

Nov 25 (HT) The Marxist-Leninist JVP, which is seen as an emerging force in Sri Lankan politics, wants India to help Sri Lanka fight Tamil separatism "without attaching any conditions," because such action will be in "India's interest also." more..

Sri Lanka reconciliation bid elicits wide support

Nov 25 (Gulf) Moves by President Chandrika Kumaratunga and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to reach consensus on national issues, including the ethnic issue, is gaining wide support from politicians, the business community and the public with fresh hopes that the two sides will reach an understanding before the end of the year. more..