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Sri Lankan soldiers are to be given more opportunities to participate in U.N. Peace keeping operations

June 28 (Rupavahini) Army commander let. Gen. Lionel Balagalle says that the security forces would be provided comprehensive training in peace keeping operations for this purpose. The army commander made this observation when he addressed the concluding ceremony of the multi nation troops training course on U.N. Peace keeping operations. more..

Govt's economic plans to be announced within next two weeks - Amunugama

June 28 (DN) The economic plans of the United People's Freedom Alliance Government will be announced within the next two weeks and the maiden budget will be presented in Parliament in November this year, stated Finance Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama. more..

Norwegian-led monitors in emergency talks to save truce

June 28 (AFP) Norwegian-led truce monitors have set off for emergency talks with the Tamil Tigers after their pull-out from meetings reviewing the implementation of a fragile ceasefire, officials said. more..

Tigers face resistance to recruitment drive

June 28 (IANS) Amid escalating tensions, Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger guerrillas have launched a renewed drive to boost their strength but are for the first time facing opposition from parents of potential child soldiers. more..

Challenges before Karuna's political ambitions

June 28 (HT) There are clear indications that the LTTE's renegade commander, Col Karuna, is well on the way to form a political party. In all likelihood, it will be a Batticaloa-based, Eastern Tamil party, with 'fish' as its symbol. more..

‘SLA intelligence behind Batticaloa murders, confusion’ - LTTE

June 28 (TN) “We have very reliable evidence now that the Sri Lanka army is using Karuna as a pretext to murder and to create mayhem in Batticaloa. We have indubitable proof that he is working with the Sri Lankan military intelligence. more..

Parents naming children in Tamil honoured

June 28 (TN) "Silampam" an organization run by Tamil expatriates in Canada through its northeast branch Sunday evening honoured selected sixty five Tamil parents at a function held in Trincomalee St Joseph's' College for having named their children with 'pure' Tamil names. more..

International oil companies interested in Sri Lanka

June 28 (OO) Several international oil and gas companies have indicated preliminary interest in future exploration investment in Sri Lanka, according to the Ministry of Power and Energy. The ministry estimates that approximately 200 million barrels of crude are located in the region. more..

LTTE threatens to boycott truce meets

June 28 (AFP) Sri Lanka's Tiger rebels said Monday they will boycott truce monitoring meetings with the Sri Lankan military until it stops harbouring breakaway rebel leader V. Muralitharan, also known as Karuna. more..

Sri Lanka to buy second-hand jets from Israel

June 29 (AFP) Sri Lanka will buy a second-hand Kfir jet fighter from Israel next month to reinforce the island’s air force which has lost a number of planes in the past three years, official sources said Monday. The Sri Lankan air force fleet is made up mostly of Israeli-made Kfirs and Ukrainian-built MiG-27s. more..

Minister discusses BoI activities in NorthEast

June 29 (TN) Mr.Arjuna Ranatunge, Deputy Minister for Tourism and Foreign Investment Promotion Monday paid a visit to Trincomalee, and held discussion with the officials of the Trincomalee District Chamber of Commerce and local investors. more..

Prelate to boycott events attended by Ministers, MPs

June 29 (TN) The Most Venerable Udugama Buddharakita, Mahanayake Thera of the Asgiriya Chapter Sunday said that he has decided to boycott functions attended by Government Ministers and parliamentarians as a protest to their unruly conduct in the parliament recently. more..

Kalmunai Rotary Club elects Tamil woman as President

June 29 (TN) Dr Ms Pushpalatha Loganathan became the first Rotary Club President in the northeast province. She was elected as the new President of Kalmunai Rotary Club in the Amparai district at an event held last week with the former Rotary District Governor Mr. N.Pathmanathan as the chief guest, sources said. more..

Lack of fax machines in courts causes delay in justice

June 29 (AT) Courts in Sri Lanka are so poorly equipped that simple communication facilities, such as fax machines, can help safeguard the administration of justice and the civil liberties of defendants, the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) said. more..

LTTE continues to trade allegations – recalcitrancy prevails

June 29 (AT) Colonel Karuna Amman’s issue continues to dominate the centre stage even at the meeting held yesterday at the political division office of the Tamil rebel outfit at Kilinochchi between the LTTE and Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM). more..

A new stance on peace talks by Sri Lanka is termed a ‘climb-down.’

June 29 (AT) A marked climbed down is observed in a renewed stance taken by the President Chandrika Kumaratunga, after her return back from England, who was there on a private visit to participate in her daughter’s convocation ceremony at the University of Cambridge. more..

Australia skipper Ponting to miss first test v Sri Lanka

June 29 (Reuters) Australia captain Ricky Ponting will miss this week's first test against Sri Lanka following the death of a relative. The family member died in Launceston, Tasmania on Monday night, a spokesman said. Ponting joined his family in Launceston on Monday while his team mates were assembling in Darwin. more..

Strike in Health services postponed

June 29 (LT) The all island strike the Health Services Trade Union Alliance had planned to launch from tomorrow has been temporarily stopped. Saman Ratnapriya, the convener of HSTUA said this decision was taken at a discussion held between more..

Gov. sets up a national council for economic development as a permanent secretariat

June 29 (Rupavahini) The government has set up the national council for economic development (NCED). It will be a permanent secretariat managed by a team of well-qualified professionals drawn from both the public and the private sectors. more..

IUSF says they will put forward counter proposals within days on security

June 29 (Rupavahini) The Inter University Students Federation says they will put forward counter proposals within days on security, enabling the reopening of the Sri Jayawardene University. more..

LTTE serves war-or-peace ultimatum to Lanka over Karuna

June 29 (PTI) Sri Lanka's faltering peace process suffered another setback on Monday when the LTTE gave an ultimatum to the government to either stop supporting the rebel Tiger leader Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan, a.k.a. Karuna, or risk war. more..

Gamata Light

June 29 (LBO) The Asian Development Bank on Monday, committed US$ 1.5 mn to float a revolving micro-finance scheme, taking electricity to rural homes in ten districts. The grant through the ADB’s Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) will provide poor households with up to 80 percent of the up-front cost of electrifying their homes. more..

Driving Hard

June 29 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s slow moving infrastructure projects are lined up for fast forward implementation through a new central coordinating body, says the Treasury Secretary. more..

Masala Recipe

June 29 (LBO) Experts from Indian Bank are flying in next month to help out with giving alternate proposals to revamp the technically insolvent People's Bank. The Indian bank became a natural choice, after it opted to restructure itself, sans any form privatisation or capital infusion from the State. more..

Sri Lanka growth surges as peace outweighs politics

June 29 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's economy grew 6.2 percent in the year through the first quarter as momentum from a ceasefire with Tamil rebels outweighed uncertainty surrounding an April snap poll, the central bank said on Tuesday. more..

Stocks gain on retail speculation

June 29 (Reuters) Sri Lanka stocks rose on Tuesday on retail interest and speculation of good corporate earnings from small stocks. The key Colombo all-share index ended up 0.31 percent, or 4.10 points, at 1,339.55. more..

Rupee flat as exporters return to market

June 29 (Reuters) The Sri Lankan rupee held steady on Tuesday at about 102.35 against the dollar, as import demand fizzled out and exporters sold dollars. Dealers said the currency has been trading between 102.40 and 102.25 for the past few days and remained in an even tighter 10 cent range on Tuesday. more..

Leaflet warns anti-social elements in Vavuniya

June 29 (TN) "We will not hesitate to punish anti-social elements in our society and traitors who act against our national struggle," said a group callling themselves Special Forces of Pandaravanniyan, in a leaflet distributed in Vavuniya district, sources said. more..

Ex-PLOTE man shot and killed while returning home

June 29 (SLA) A civilian returning home on a push bicycle has been shot dead by an unidentified pistol man in the general area of PATTINIY-ARMAKILANKULAM in the suburbs of VAVUNIYA on 27 June 2004 around 8.30 p.m. more..

One more vehicle with varying documents arrested

June 29 (SLA) A van (WPHS-8834) proceeding towards MADHU CHURCH was nabbed at the Entry/Exit point at MADHU Rd Junction on 28 June 2004 since it did not carry proper documents. more..

Twenty more Sri Lankan refugees dropped

June 29 (SLA) Twenty Sri Lankan refugees dropped by an Indian dhow in the general sea area of first SAND BANK, URUMALAI were taken into custody by Naval troops on duty around 6.00 a.m. on 28 June 2004. more..

Curtains fall on Army’s first UN multinational platoon exercise “Sama Gamana”

June 29 (SLA) Exchange of tokens of goodwill, greetings and warm embraces, consequential to the formal closing sessions of the Multinational Platoon Exercise “Sama Gamana” at Kukuleganga on Sunday, went down in the annals of the Sri Lanka Army in terms of its significance since it was the first ever UN sponsored mega exercise to take place in Sri Lanka. more..

Tamil Tigers again abduct Child Soldiers

June 29 (HRW) The LTTE are waging a campaign in eastern Sri Lanka to abduct former child soldiers for their forces, Human Rights Watch said today. Over the last three weeks, the armed opposition group has intensified efforts to re-recruit child combatants released by Colonel Karuna, more..

President turns 59 today

June 29 (PSL) President Chandrika Kumaratunga turns 59 today, a series of religious and charitable events have been planned to mark the President’s birthday. Chandrika was born to one of Sri Lanka’s most distinguished families on 29th June 1945. more..

Opposition wants House to meet

June 29 (TP) Sri Lanka’s joint opposition in parliament is considering the possibility of requesting the Speaker to convene the legislature before July 20, the scheduled date for the next sittings, the Daily Mirror reported. more..

Policeman in the dock for torture

June 29 (TP) A policeman has been accused of what a newspaper called “a hideous form of torture” for forcing a man suffering from tuberculosis to spit into another man — both suspects in police custody — in which the latter also contracts tuberculosis. more..

Local-Foreigner tussles plague de-mining in Sri Lanka

June 29 (OW) The latest attack on a foreign de-mining organization in Sri Lanka has brought to the fore the resentment against such groups, which are accused of ill-treating local employees and overpricing their services. more..

People's Power is with Govt - President

June 29 (DN) Government falling short of two, three votes was not a problem to take forward its programme of work to build the country, President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga said yesterday. more..

Journalists flee eastern Sri Lanka

June 29 (NW) Several Batticaloa-based Tamil journalists have fled their homes following death threats to them by anonymous callers.They have been threatened that any publicity or any links with the LTTE would result in death. more..

Catholic priests offer support to Buddhist monks

June 29 (NW) The Bishop of Kandy with more than 40 priests of the Diocese yesterday paid a courtesy call on the Malwatte Chapter's new Mahanayake Ven. Thibbotuwawe Sri Siddhartha Sumangala Thera. more..

CWE workers wants Ravi K arrested

June 29 (NW) Members of a CWE union yesterday staged a protest outside their Rakshana Mandiraya headquarters demanding the arrest of former Trade Minister Ravi Karunanayake. A spokesman for the the SUSU which organized the protest, charged that Mr. Karunanayake was largely responsible for the mess in the CWE and should be arrested immediately. more..

JVP to the continue the case to quash the MOU between Ranil and Prabhakaran

June 29 (AT) The JVP has decided to continue with its case filed at the country’s Appeals Courts requesting the judges to issue a writ of certiorari to quash the agreement signed between former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and LTTE Leader Velupillai Prabhakaran, it was revealed when the case was taken up, June 28 in Colombo. more..

Sri Lanka's Christians denounce new religious laws

June 29 (ABC) Christian leaders in Sri Lanka say plans by the government to introduce a new law restricting religious conversions will violate personal freedoms and oppress minority religions. Sri Lanka's government says it wants to prevent churches from offering people inducements, such as money or employment, to change religion. more..

Aussies and Sri Lankans shift focus

June 29 (IHT) It was supposed to be a contest between the greatest active spin bowlers. Instead, the two-match series between Australia and Sri Lanka that begins at Marrara Oval on Thursday in Darwin, Australia, may decide whether a great paceman has a future at the international level. more..

Sacked SLMC parliamentarians file petition in SC

June 29 (TN) Three dissident Sri Lanka Muslim Congress parliamentarians Messrs Hussain Baila, Najeeb Abdul Majeed and Risard Badiudin Tuesday filed a petition in the Supreme Court against their dismissal from the party and seeking the court to declare that their removal from the party is illegal, more..

Atapattu fit for Darwin Test

June 30 (CI) Marvan Atapattu has expressed confidence about his fitness for the first Test against Australia after a sore back forced him out of Sri Lanka's only warm-up game before the Test series. more..

Sri Lanka accepts Broad

June 30 (AAP) Sri Lanka is resigned to Chris Broad's appointment as the International Cricket Council match referee for the series against Australia starting tomorrow. The former England opener became public enemy No. 1 in Sri Lanka just three months ago when he cited star spinner Muttiah Muralitharan for having an illegal action. more..

Tamil journalists condemn slander

June 30 (TN) The Sri Lanka Tamil Media Alliance (SLTMA) and the East Lanka Journalists’ Association (ELJA) Tuesday condemned what they described as “attempts in a section of the Colombo to discredit independent Tamil journalists”. more..

Jaffna court fixes inquiry into HC applications

June 30 (TN) The Jaffna High Court Judge Mr.K.P.S.Varatharajah fixed the inquiry for July 28 into the six Habeas Corpus applications submitted by parents and relatives of 45 persons who are reported disappeared after the arrest by the Sri Lanka Army during the year 1996, legal sources said. more..

Special envoy Solheim to meet Thamilchelvan Wednesday

June 30 (TN) Norwegian special envoy Mr. Erik Solheim is to visit Killinochchi Wednesday to hold crucial discussion with Mr. S.P. Thamilchelvan in a bid to break the deadlock in resuming the stalled peace talks between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE, embassy statement said. more..