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All the world's a page

Nov 2 (TS) When Hurricane Isabel lashed the southeastern United States a few weeks back, its victims included a 27-year-old university graduate named Arubinda Deraniyagala, crushed to death by a falling tree. A resident of Chesterfield County, Va., Deraniyagala was carrying a large black umbrella, which obscured his vision. more..

Sri Lanka hopes to resume peace talks early next year

Nov 2 (AP) Sri Lanka has asked Norway to help organize a meeting with Tamil Tiger rebels in the coming weeks to pave the way for the resumption of peace talks early next year, the government's chief peace negotiator said Sunday. more..

'LTTE peace proposal threat to Indian security'

Nov 2 (EI) The Janata Party president Dr Subramanian Swamy on Sunday said that the LTTE's peace proposals would spell disaster not only for Sri Lanka, but cause security threat to India. In a statement in Madurai, he said India should not accept a power-sharing arrangement with LTTE in any form. more..

Bangladesh, Sri Lanka seek to boost trade

Nov 2 (Reuters) Bangladesh and Sri Lanka said on Sunday, after two days of talks, that they would hold further discussions aimed at reaching a free trade agreement (FTA) which they believe could greatly boost bilateral trade. more..

President urged not to retake defense ministry

Nov 2 (TN) The Mahanayake Theras of Malwatte and Asgiriya Chapters Sunday appealed to the President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge not to retake the post of defense ministry thus plunging the country into crisis at a time Sri Lanka has joined the global community to establish peace in the country, more..

Sangaree's attempt to pass confidence motion foiled

Nov 2 (TN) The attempt made by the President of the TULF, main constituent of the TNA Mr.V.Ananadasangaree to pass a vote of confidence on him at a prayer meeting held at the Jaffna district secretariat of the TULF Sunday was foiled when the participants walked out of the hall, more..

LTTE proposal, just old wine in new bottle

Nov 2 (TOI) The LTTE’s proposals for a self-governing entity in north-east Sri Lanka is part of the two-steps forward, one-step back approach of what is arguably the world’s deadliest terrorist organisation. more..

Proposal merits no discussions - JVP

Nov 3 (TN) The JVP said Sunday that the interim administrative structure proposal submitted by the LTTE deserves no discussions with any one and should be thrown into waste paper basket. The JVP pointed out that the proposal contained all powers required for a separate state in the island, more..

SU demands Colombo to abandon peace process

Nov 3 (TN) Sihala Urumaya (SU), Sunday appealed to the UNF Government to terminate the peace talks with LTTE on the basis of the contents of the proposals for interim self-governing authority (ISGA), which the SU said will lead to the formation of a separate state, more..

A Sri Lankan holiday - after 20 years

Nov 3 (GR) European tourists are once again romancing the breathtaking Sri Lankan beach of Nilaveli on the Bay of Bengal. Only two years ago, the scene here was of a bloody battleground. Nilaveli beach on Sri Lanka's east coast is full of European tourists - the Germans, French, Dutch and the English. more..

Sampanthan to address seminar on ISGA

Nov 3 (TN) The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) is organizing a one-day seminar on Friday, November 7, on the Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA) proposed by the LTTE for the Tamil dominated NorthEast province. Mr. R. Sampanthan, the parliamentary group leader of TNA is expected to speak on behalf of TNA, more..

England tempted to rely on pace for series in Sri Lanka

Nov 3 (Independent) Duncan Fletcher was full of praise for Michael Vaughan's side following their 2-0 series victory over Bangladesh, but the England coach still wants more from his players during the remainder of their time in Asia. more..

Senior ministers meet LTTE special reps in Vavuniya

Nov 3 (UNI) Four senior Cabinet Ministers of the United National Front (UNF) government have reportedly met special representatives of the Tamil Tiger rebels in the Northern Vavuniya town today to discuss LTTE's power-sharing plan. more..

Mixed reaction to LTTE proposals

Nov 3 (Hindu) Political parties and non-government groups in Sri Lanka have reacted to the proposals of the LTTE along predictable lines, with the nationalist parties opposing and a pro-peace group welcoming the move. more..

No solution in sight for Karapitiya Hospital crisis

Nov 3 (DN) The crisis at the Karapitiya Cardio-thoracic unit has further worsened with no solution in sight as trade unions remained daggers drawn against each other, causing severe hardships to patients with heart ailments. more..

The way forward lies through direct discussion - GoSL

Nov 3 (TN) The government in a statement issued today said that the proposals "differ in fundamental respect" from the proposals submitted by the government. However the GoSL statement said that "the government is convinced that the way forward lies through direct discussions of the issues arising from both sets of proposals." more..

Dhaka, Colombo to sign FTA next year

Nov 3 (DS) Bangladesh and Sri Lanka yesterday agreed to ink a free trade agreement next year to be effective from the day of signing. "I see no major difficulty in the negotiation. We are hopeful that the FTA will come into force next year," Manel de Silva, joint secretary and director general of the Department of Commerce of Sri Lanka, told newsmen more..

Uphill Battle

Nov 3 (LBO) Despite a recent economic upturn, Sri Lanka’s somewhat under developed capital market are yet to pose a serious competition to the local banking sector. The commercial banking sector accounts for 64 percent of the total assets in the Sri Lankan financial system. more..


Nov 3 (LBO) Like most couples planning to take the plunge Deepali and Nishan wanted everything to be perfect on their wedding day. Deepali was especially keen to have the most gorgeous bouquet possible - a far cry from when flowers were mostly used as offerings at temples. more..

U.S. Government supports resumption of peace negotiations

Nov 3 (TN) Applauding the Norwegian government for its ongoing facilitation efforts, the U.S. Embassy in Sri Lanka in a statement issued today, said that it also believed that "it is possible for both sides to reach agreement on an interim administration which, over time, must lead into a permanent peace settlement". more..

Hakim to meet his rival Athaullah on LTTE proposals

Nov 3 (TN) SLMC leader and Minister Mr.Rauff Hakim on his return to Colombo Monday from Britain is scheduled to meet his rival and Minister Mr.A.L.M. Athaullah on Wednesday to discuss LTTE's proposal on the Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA), more..

Media reports on LTTE, UNF Ministers' meet false - LTTE

Nov 3 (TN) In a press release issued from its Political Head Quarters in Kilinochchi Monday morning, LTTE denied media reports that said a meeting took place between Peace Secretariat Director Pulithevan and Senior ministers of the United Front Government, more..

APM explosion injures two soldiers

Nov 3 (SLA) Two soldiers returning from duty fell victim to an Anti-Personnel Mine (APM) buried in the general area of KANKESANTHURAI early this morning. Private W. UPASEELI and Private N. M SURANGA PRADEEP trampled on this old APM buried in the above area at about 5.00 in the morning. more..

LTTE flag hoisted but removed after SLMM ruling

Nov 3 (SLA) The SLMM on 02 November 2003 instructed LTTE to remove the LTTE flag raised at CHAVAKACHCHERI Hindu College premises in the general area of CHAVAKACHCHERI. Troops provided this information, given by the public to the SLMM requesting a ruling on the issue. more..

Self-claimed LTTE men rob jewelry and cash

Nov 3 (SLA) A self-claimed group of LTTE men on production of LTTE identity cards had relieved a woman of her jewelry and cash in the general area of NATTANDIYA-DANKOTUWA on 01 November 2003 between 8.00-9.00 p.m., claims a Police complaint. more..

LTTE album and negatives recovered from boat in restricted zone

Nov 3 (SLA) Naval troops on duty in the general sea area off TRINCOMALEE recovered an LTTE photo album and some negatives on 31 October 2003 from a fibre glass boat moving from SAMPOOR area towards FLAG STAFF POINT in the restricted zone. more..

Muslims continue to protest against atrocities

Nov 3 (SLA) A protest campaign, organized by Muslims to protest against continuing atrocities of some Tamils in the general areas of MUTTUR and KINNIYA, crippled the normalcy in AKKARAIPATTU town on 31 October 2003. All shops were seen closed in the vicinity of AKKARAIPATTU town and public transport ceased to function. more..

Former LTTE girl seeks protection from troops

Nov 3 (SLA) An ex- female LTTE cadre, who claimed that LTTE was trying to arrest her, surrendered to troops in the general area of BATTICALOA on 31 October 2003 around 9.00 a.m. seeking protection. more..

Debt interest savings to narrow 2004 budget gap

Nov 3 (DJ) Savings on interest payments will help Sri Lanka narrow its budget gap to an estimated 6.8% of gross domestic product in 2004, the country's deputy finance minister said. "We are anticipating a saving of around 9 billion rupees ($1= LKR94.64) in interest payments on debts in 2004," more..

Closer Sri Lanka-India economic and defence ties

Nov 3 (WSWS) The recent visit by Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to India points to the broader economic and strategic interests involved in the current attempts to restart negotiations to end the country’s longrunning civil war. more..

JVP blasts Tamil Tigers self-rule proposal

Nov 3 (AP) Sri Lanka's third-largest political party on Sunday criticised a Tamil Tiger proposal for self-rule and urged the government not to negotiate with the rebels. "This is a virtual declaration of independence, and no sovereign government should even have a second look at the proposal," said Thilan Silva, more..

Possible tax hikes loom in budget

Nov 3 (Reuters) Sri Lanka said on Monday it faced tough decisions in its 2004 budget next week to meet debt and budget deficit goals, and refused to rule out tax hikes and government layoffs. The targets include cutting national debt to 85 percent of gross domestic product by 2006, from 102 percent this year, more..

Indian firm tipped for oil exploration

Nov 3 (Reuters) Sri Lanka is most likely to award exploration rights off the island's northwest coast to an Indian firm, the head of state-run Ceylon Petroleum Corp (CPC) said on Monday. "We feel that Indian companies will be at an advantage, specially in the Cauvery Basin because they are familiar with the region," more..

LTTE rules out Muslim participation

Nov 3 (DM) The LTTE on Saturday refused to accommodate the Muslim rights and aspirations in the North and the East "at this point of time." LTTE political wing leader Tamilselvan stressed that the "time was not right to accommodate the aspirations of the Muslim community at negotiations." more..

Stocks slip after rebel proposal

Nov 3 (Reuters) Stocks fell on Monday as jitters over the island's peace process weighed on blue chip counters after the Tamil Tiger rebels released a weekend proposal for power-sharing. The key Colombo all-share index ended down 0.79 percent, or 11.26 points, at 1,405.11. more..

Ceylon Petro's fuel imports to drop

Nov 3 (Reuters) State-run Ceylon Petroleum Corp, which runs Sri Lanka's only refinery, could cut imports of oil products next year as new firms retail fuel in the island, its chairman said on Monday. more..

Rule book blocks re-marriage of war widows

Nov 3 (HT) Thousands of war widows, many in the tender age group 20 to 30 and childless too, are unable to re-marry and lead a normal life, because the rule book says that if they do, they will lose their pension, which is a tidy sum of Rs.20,000 per month, even at the lowest, private's level. more..

US air force to jointly survey Sri Lanka airfields

Nov 3 (AFP) US air force experts are to jointly survey Sri Lanka's airfields to help their local counterparts assess their needs, the US embassy said Monday. About 30 members of the US 13th Air Force's 613th Contingency Response Group (CRG) are participating more..

LTTE proposals go beyond devolution - CBK

Nov 3 (Island) President Chandrika Kumaratunga said although she accepted devolution, she would not agree to any proposal to grant the LTTE an 'Eelam' or a separate state by any other name. She said the LTTE interim administration proposals went far beyond devolution. more..

Opposition concerned at action against chief justice

Nov 3 (IANS) Main opposition party headed by President Chandrika Kumaratunga Monday expressed grave concern at the government's move to impeach the country's chief justice, Xinhua reports. Kumaratunga's SLFP said in a statement that the government's action was aimed at intimidating the judiciary. more..

New wave of nationalism spells trouble

Nov 3 (OW) Last week's protest rally in the Central province coupled with a violent clash at a festival to promote Tamil-Sinhala unity in the capital, Colombo, indicate right-wing parties are staging a comeback in Sri Lanka: a recipe for future conflict. more..

LTTE says India cannot dictate framework for solution

Nov 3 (HT) The LTTE's political leader, SP Tamilchelvam, has made it clear that while India's interest in the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka is understandable and welcome, it cannot dictate its terms of settlement. more..

US urges Rebels, Government to be flexible

Nov 3 (DJ) The U.S. Embassy in Sri Lanka Monday urged the Tamil Tiger rebels and the Sri Lankan government to be flexible, as the two sides seek to revive peace talks aimed at resolving the country's civil war. more..

US backs Sri Lanka peace moves

Nov 3 (BBC) The United States has said it believes the Sri Lankan Government and Tamil Tiger rebels can agree on an interim administration to eventually resolve the country's civil war. The announcement follows the unveiling of the Tigers' first detailed proposal for power-sharing in the north-east on Saturday. more..

US, Sri Lankan air forces conduct military exchange

Nov 3 (Xinhua) The US and Sri Lankan Air Forces are conducting a Subject Matter Expert exchange in Sri Lanka this month, the US embassy here said in a statement on Monday. Approximately 30 highly qualified specialists of the US Air Force are participating in the exchange with the Sri Lankan Air Force, it said. more..

LTTE proposals are the first step towards Eelam - Narayan Swamy

Nov 3 (IANS) The proposals submitted by Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger guerrillas to form an interim administration in the island's north and east are the first concrete stepping stone towards an independent Tamil state. more..

SLFP to reveal its stand on ISGA Tuesday

Nov 3 (TN) The SLFP, chief constituent of the main opposition Peoples Alliance Monday said it has put off the special press briefing which was scheduled to be held Monday to announce its stand on the proposed Interim Self-Governing Authority (ISGA) for Tuesday. more..

ISGA a base for further talks -LSSP

Nov 3 (TN) Mr. Batty Weerakoon, leader of the Lanka Sama Samaja Party (LSSP), said Monday that the Government of Sri Lanka could carry forward the peace talks with the LTTE, sources said. The LSSP is a constituent of the main opposition People’s Alliance (PA). more..

Peace Dividend

Nov 3 (Time) When Thavarasan Singham returned to his grocery shop in May, the shutters were still riddled with bullet holes. Back in 1990, Singham's town of Mankulam, in northern Sri Lanka, was caught in the cross fire between Tamil guerrillas and Sri Lanka's predominantly Sinhalese army. more..

Appeal Court to rule on objection to IA petition

Nov 4 (TN) The Court of Appeal Monday reserved its verdict for December 18 on the preliminary objection raised by the Attorney General that the court did not have the power to issue an order on the petition seeking the court’s intervention to order a referendum in the Northeast province before the establishment of an interim administration, more..