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Peace deal with Sri Lanka govt impossible -Tigers

Nov 11 (Reuters) Tamil Tigers on Thursday doused hopes of putting a speedy end to two decades of civil war, saying a final peace deal was impossible under the current government. Norwegian peace envoys wrapped up the latest round of shuttle diplomacy to jumpstart stalled peace talks with the rebels. more..

Missing VVT fisherman body washed ashore

Nov 12 (TN) The decomposed body of Mr. S.Karunakaran (43) who was reported missing since Sunday when he fell into the sea while fishing in rough weather was washed ashore Wednesday in Kankesanthurai (KKS) located in the high security zone, Police said. more..

Australia divided over ICC "chucking" report

Nov 12 (Reuters) Australia has given a mixed reaction to an ICC recommendation to allow bowlers to straighten their arms, a move that would clear Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan to bowl his controversial "doosra". more..

Sri Lanka military commitment not in India's interests

Nov 12 (IPS) While India is ready to enter into a 'defence cooperation agreement' with Sri Lanka, it is wary of being drawn into any military involvement in the island nation's two decades-old civil war that has seen violent strife between ethnic Tamils and the Sinhalese majority more..

Sri Lankan PM to attend Arafat funeral

Nov 12 (LBO) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse will attend the funeral of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, a spokesman said Thursday. "The prime minister will be at the funeral although he had arranged to launch a new initiative for reviving the country's southern region this weekend," the spokesman said. more..

Late Yasser Arafat was a people's leader who brought an honour for the rights of Palestinians -President

Nov 12 (Rupavahini) President Chandrika Kumaratunge expresses her deepest condolence on the demise of the leader of the Palestine liberation organization and the president of Palestine Yasser Arafat. more..

Hindus the world over celebrate Deepavali festival

Nov 12 (Rupavahini) The Hindus the world over celebrate Deepavali or the festival of lights today. Deepavali stands for the triumphant entry of the resplendent light of peace, unity and understanding among the people and the gramatic defeat of evil. more..

TNA MPs to hold discussion on Jaffna education

Nov 12 (TN) Jaffna district Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians are to conduct discussions with teachers, principals and education officers at the zonal level on education and administrative problems in Jaffna district, TNA sources said. more..

Riding Sri Lanka's A9, a passage between two worlds

Nov 12 (CSM) The bus from Anuradhapura to Vavuniya sits empty in the weak dawn sunlight, until Kapila Hemantha boards. Slender, smiling, and bespectacled, Mr. Hemantha looks more like an accountant catching a commuter bus than a lance corporal heading to his army's frontier. more..

Sri Lankan rate increase may extend growth, John Keells says

Nov 12 (Bloomberg) Sri Lanka's decision to raise interest rates to curb inflation may help to extend a 2 1/2-year economic expansion and reinforce investor confidence, the South Asian country's biggest publicly traded company said. more..

Pressure CBK, TNA urges Norwegian

Nov 12 (IL) The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has urged the Norwegian facilitators to put pressure on President Chandrika Kumaratunga into resuming peace talks with the LTTE immediately. more..

JVP charges fifth column at work

Nov 12 (IL) Despite the Alliance Government's policy of not privatising state institutions there are some in the Government working hard to privatise the Ceylon Electricity Board and the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation, a JVP minister charged. more..

Sri Lanka joins the world grieving Arafat

Nov 12 (BBC) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa leaves Colombo Thursday night to attend the funeral of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. more..

LTTE tight lipped on latest proposal

Nov 12 (BBC) The Norwegian Foreign Minister Jan Peterson left Sri lanka without achieving a breakthrough in resuming the stalled peace talks. Tamil Tiger leader V.Prabhakran met the The Norwegian Foreign minister, his deputy Vidar Helgesen and special peace envoy Eric Solheim in rebel held Vanni. more..

Prabhakaran-Petersen talks fail to end Lankan stalemate

Nov 12 (HT) The talks between the Norwegian Foreign Minister Jan Petersen and the LTTE Supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran in Kilinochchi on Thursday failed to break the stalemate on the question of resuming peace talks with the Sri Lankan government to end the ethnic conflict. more..

Reporters on the Job

Nov 12 (CSM) On his recent road trip in Sri Lanka, contributor Adam Karlin said it was puzzling and disappointing to see how lovely the warring majority Singhalese and Tamils Tiger rebels are to everyone but each other. "It's hard to understand why two of the most hospitable and polite peoples I've ever met try so hard to kill each other," he says. more..

Sample letter to the Secretary General of the LTTE’s Peace Secretariat

Nov 12 (HRW) The following is a sample letter to the Secretary General of the LTTE’s Peace Secretariat regarding the LTTE’s recruitment and use of child soldiers. Use it to create your own letter to send to Mr. Puleedevan at more..

President Musharraf felicitates President Kumaratunga

Nov 12 (PSL) President Pervez Musharraf has appreciated Sri Lanka’s contribution to the cause of global peace and prosperity and reinvigoration of SAARC under the leadership of President Chandrika Kumaratunga. more..

Simple ceremony to mark a decade of Kumaratunga Presidency

Nov 12 (PSL) Today the 10th anniversary of President Chandrika Kumaratunga’s Presidency began with a simple religious ceremony at the President’s House. Dignitaries from the four major religions of the country were invited to bless the President. more..

Sri Lanka's 2005 budget could bring new taxes

Nov 12 (DJ) Sri Lanka's government will likely focus on measures to boost revenue when it presents its 2005 budget next week, with a series of new taxes targeting businesses and high-income groups expected to be at the top of the list. more..

Paramilitary operative arrested for claymore attack in Batticaloa

Nov 12 (TN) Batticaloa Magistrate Friday remanded a ‘Karuna Group’, cadre accused of attempting to murder two civilians by exploding a claymore mine and lobbing a grenade at them on Thursday around 2.30 p.m. near Kaluwankerni Junction on the main coastal artery of the district. more..

Murali defends new chucking law

Nov 12 (BBC) Muttiah Muralitharan insists he is not the only leading bowler with a suspect action and says Australia's Glenn McGrath bends his arm beyond the limit. On Wednesday, the International Cricket Board recommended that all players be allowed to flex their arms by up to 15 degrees when bowling. more..

Government to appeal through Al-Jazeera

Nov 12 (SLBC) In a desperate bid to free the Sri Lankan hostage held by Iraqi militant group Alsural Sunna for the past two weeks, the Government yesterday released a recorded appeal to be televised via Al-Jazeera. The appeal is made by the Deputy Foreign Minister Prof. Wiswa Warnapala on behalf of Dinesh Rajaratnam's (36) family. more..

3020 soldiers stranded in transit camps

Nov 12 (LT) A large number of soldiers who had come on leave from military camps in Jaffna to visit their families are stranded in transition camps. The renovation work carried out to the runaways in Palaly Airport and the sea being rough due to the monsoon season is said to be the reason for the delay in finding transport for these soldiers. more..

We won't hold our portfolios if talks are based on interim administration - Lal Kanthe

Nov 12 (LT) "This government too is trying to have peace talks based on an interim administration. Background is being created for it now. If that happens we will never hold these portfolios," said Mr. Lal Kanthe, Minister of Rural & Small Industries. more..

Shanthe Kottegoda's term extended

Nov 12 (LT) The President has decided to extend the period of service of the Commander of the Army, Lt. Gen. Shanthe Kottegoda. He was to retire as he reached the age of 55 but the Secretary to the Ministry of Defense had requested the President to extend his period of service. more..

Sri Lanka rupee ends flat, shrugs surprise rate hike

Nov 12 (Reuters) The Sri Lanka rupee closed flat on Friday, shrugging off a surprise increase in central bank benchmark rates as importer demand for dollars to settle trade bills was countered as exporters cashed in trade earnings, dealers said. more..

Govt for early resumption of talks - President

Nov 12 (DN) President Chandrika Kumaratunga received Norwegian Foreign Minister Jan Petersen at the President's House yesterday on his return from Kilinochchi. The Norwegian Foreign Minister briefed the President on his meeting with the LTTE leadership more..

Latest Norway peace bid for Sri Lanka ends without breakthrough

Nov 12 (AFP) Norway's latest bid to salvage Sri Lanka's faltering peace process ended without a breakthrough but the government and the rebels have pledged to continue to uphold a fragile truce. more..

Sri Lankan govt reviews Tamil rebels' new offer to break peace talks deadlock

Nov 12 (AP) Both sides in Sri Lanka's civil war renewed their commitment to a cease-fire, as the government on Friday considered its response to a new offer from Tamil Tiger rebels to revive stalled peace talks, officials said. more..

Tigers, SLA discuss security of LTTE political workers

Nov 12 (TN) The Liberation Tigers met Sri Lankan armed forces representatives Friday at the truce monitoring mission office in Batticaloa for discussions on the security of their political activists who are working in the eastern town. more..

Media should promote ISGA- paper

Nov 12 (TN) Pointing out the declaration by South Asia Free Media Association (SAFMA) that said "ISGA proposal could serve as useful basis for the commencement of talks to map out an interim structure," more..

Local police study management techniques

Nov 12 (LBO) On Friday 150 policemen from all parts of the island graduated from a US funded training programme on management techniques. “Approximately one hundred and fifty members of the Sri Lankan Police graduated today from a round of training courses funded by the U.S government,” said a press release from the US embassy on Friday. more..

Home made trains will be put to the test in August next year

Nov 12 (LBO) The local railway is hoping to build its fleet by making trains at home but the plan hinges on a successful test run next year. Sri Lanka’s railway coupled up with local company Micro Cars, to design and manufacture diesel trains this week. more..

Two motorbike-riding civilians come under attack

Nov 12 (SLA) An unidentified group had lobbed an improvised device and a hand grenade at two motorbike riders in the general area of PALACHCHOLAI, VANTHARAMOOLAI on 11 November 2004 around 2.50 p.m. before the group took away their motorbike forcibly. more..

Re-Opening work of Government Tamil School begins

Nov 12 (SLA) Stage is set for re-opening of the Eluththumaduval north Government Tamil Mixed School at least by early 2005 with the strong support the school authorities received from troops deployed in the Jaffna peninsula. more..

Premier attends Arafat's funeral

Nov 12 (BBC) Leaders and leading ministers from many countries attended the funeral of Palestine leader Yasser Arafat in Egypt, prime minister Mahinda Rajapakse said. Prime Minister said all the leaders attended paid tribute to the brave and courageous leader who fought for Palestine’s independence. more..

Jaffna zone education problems discussed

Nov 13 (TN) "The reason for the decline of standard of education in Jaffna district is ignoring the development of rural schools when allocating funds," said Mr.Mavai Senathirajah, Jaffna district TNA parliamentarian when addressing the first consultation meeting held Friday more..

Jaffna to be included in livestock development plan

Nov 13 (TN) A team of government officials Friday visited Jaffna to conduct a survey to include Jaffna district in the proposed National Livestock Development plan. The team attended a conference held at the district secretariat with the Government Agent Mr.S.Pathmanathan in the chair, sources said. more..

LTTE is planning to reopen their political offices in the Batticaloa district

Nov 13 (Rupavahini) Political officials in Kallady, Mamangama and Arasadi are to be re-opened shortly. This was revealed at a discussion between the regional political heads of the LTTE and the security divisions and the SLMM office. more..

Simple common religious ceremony to mark a decade of Kumaratunga Presidency

Nov 13 (AT) Chandrika Kumaratunga celebrated her 10 the anniversary of assuming executive Presidency of Sri Lanka. She is today the only longest serving Head of State in South Asia, directly elected by the people. more..

Tamil Tiger leader Prabakaran mourns the death of Yasser Arafat

Nov 13 (AT) In a letter sent to condole the demised Chairman Yasser Arafat, V.Prabakaran has said: “Arafat was the source and force of inspiration for all the oppressed masses of the of the world" more..

Norwegian’s has exhausted diplomatic ability in peace making

Nov 13 (AT) Norwegian Foreign Minister Jan Petersen returned to Oslo with his head hung low like a man returning from not one but two funerals. He had represented his country at Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat’s funeral in Cairo after almost administering last rites of the Norway’s peace facilitation in Sri Lanka. more..

Attempts to be free from corruption

Nov 13 (SLBC) President Chandrika Kumaratunga said that her Government was able to free the country from corruption and state sponsored terrorism and she considers that as a major achievement during her past 10 year tenure. more..

TNA MPs, LTTE activist attend Ifthar in Trincomalee

Nov 13 (TN) Mr.R.Sampanthan and Mr.K.Thurairatnasingham, TNA parliamentarians from the Trincomalee district, Mr.M.S.Thowfeek, former parliamentarian and a leading member of the SLMC, Mr.Puratchi, head of the Trincomalee District Thamileelam Students Unit of the Liberation Tigers participated at the 'Ifthar' function held Friday more..

Body found in Mannar town

Nov 13 (TN) The body of a man was found with gun shot wounds in the head was found in Mannar town on Saturday morning, Police said. A placard with the name Ellalan Padai (army) was found by the body. more..

Congratulatory messages pour in

Nov 13 (PSL) Congratulatory messages are pouring in from world leaders to President Chandrika Kumaratunga on her completion of 10 years in office. Among the leaders who have sent messages are Indian President Dr. Abdul Kalam, Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharaff, more..

“Right of Muslim brothers to live with dignity must be protected” - President

Nov 13 (PSL) “We must ensure we uphold and protect the identities and the rights of all our peoples. The right of our Muslim brothers to continue to live with dignity and in harmony with all communities must be protected”, states President Chandrika Kumaratunga in her message for Ramazan. more..

Japan provides consultancy services for hydro power project

Nov 13 (SLBC) Upper Kothmale power project will be constructed with Japanese assistance. Japan's Electric Power Development Co. will provide consultancy services for a hydroelectric power plant project on plant design, issuance of tender, plant construction and maintenance for 5 five years.

Travel Bash

Nov 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka is vying for more attention in the global tourism trail, as globetrotters shrug off economic downturn and terrorism fears to travel. The global tourism trade will close strong this year, with strong consumer demand and business confidence peping up arrivals to levels last seen in 1984. more..