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Civilian shot and killed by Sri Lankan Army soldiers, Jaffna tense

Aug 4 (TN) A saloon employee, identified as Mr. Jeyaseelan Shantharooban, 24, was shot in his head by Sri Lankan Army soldiers who entered the hairdressing saloon located at Innuvil Junction on KKS Road in Jaffna around 1:00 p.m. Thursday, residents said. more..

Accidental fire causes death to civilian

Aug 4 (SLA) An accidental firing caused by the weapon of a soldier at INUVIL in the general area of JAFFNA Thursday (4) afternoon at about 1.30 p.m. brought death to a civilian after he was admitted to hospital with head injuries. more..

Tension erupts over “cobra” in anthill

Aug 4 (SLA) Police had to swiftly move in to defuse tension that erupted in the general area of PALAUTTUWA, TRINCOMALEE following a dispute that triggered off between two religious factions on Wednesday (03) night around 10.30 p.m. more..

One more near Minister’s house arrested

Aug 4 (SLA) Troops on duty at the ELIBANK roadblock in the general area of BAMBALAPITIYA, COLOMBO-04, arrested a suspicious man on a three-wheeler on 03 August 2005 around 4.30 p.m. while he was roaming near Eelam People’s Democratic Party (EPDP) leader, Minister DOUGLAS DEVANADA’s residence. more..

President pledges her commitment to protect the rights of all communities

Aug 4 (SLBC) President Chandrika Kumaratunga said as the head of state she is committed in protecting the rights of all communities. Addressing a group of Muslim leaders and representatives at the presidential secretarial yesterday President Kumaratunga assured that the government will not jeopardize the rights and the security of the Muslim people. more..

Singapore, Sri Lanka sign Open Skies Agreement

Aug 4 (Xinhua) Singapore and Sri Lanka signed an Open Skies Agreement (OSA) on Thursday to strengthen their cooperation in the aviation field, said a statement by the Ministry of Transport. Under the agreement, airlines of the two countries may operate passenger flights between and beyond the two countries without being restricted on capacity, routing or aircraft type. more..

Sri Lanka: taking stock of the LTTE

Aug 4 (ISN) The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), popularly called the Tigers, is perhaps the world's best-organized, if not largest, insurgent force. LTTE insurgents have been fighting in Sri Lanka for an independent Tamil Eelam (Tamil Homeland) for three decades. more..

Chandrika wants Mahinda’s "Helping Hambantota" funds transferred

Aug 4 (AT) President Chandrika Kumaratunga wants the funds deposited in Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse’s controversial Helping Hambantota account to be transferred to the National Fund for Disaster Relief account at the Central Bank. more..

Maharoof pulled up for excessive appealing

Aug 4 (CI) Farveez Maharoof, the Sri Lankan allrounder, has been severely reprimanded for excessive appealing during Sri Lanka's 50 run win against West Indies in the third ODI of the Indian Oil Cup at Dambulla on August 2. more..

'Not the end of the world'

Aug 4 (MD) Normally, a coach would find it hard to defend a team that had their opponents 95 for six in the 26th over (chasing 221) and still failed to get another wicket by the 48th over. But Greg Chappell did not read the riot act. “I am not going to read too much into the loss. It’s not the end of the world. I am just disappointed that we ended up losing,” more..

Sri Lanka's excise revenue to reach US$175 mln

Aug 4 (Xinhua) The Sri Lankan Excise Department is on course to reach its targeted revenue of 17.5 billion rupee (175 million US dollars), the official Daily News reported Thursday. Last year's total revenue stood at 13.5 billion rupee (135 million US dollars). The Department has collected 7.8 billion rupee (78 million US dollars) as of June 31 this year, more..

UNP announces PM candidate

Aug 4 (TP) The main opposition United National Party (UNP) on Tuesday announced that its prime ministerial candidate in a future government would be Karu Jayasuriya, deputy leader of the party. more..

P-TOMS will not harm Muslims' rights and security - President

Aug 4 (DN) President Chandrika Kumaratunga yesterday appealed to the Muslim community to embrace the opportunity the P-TOMS has offered to work together as equal partners with the LTTE in rebuilding the post-tsunami North and East. more..

New guidelines coming on buffer zone

Aug 4 (SAMN) A new set of guidelines with a strict ban on new dwellings within two hundred metres of the beach front yet giving greater ‘flexibility’ for construction in safer areas, will be gazetted by the end of this month. more..

JHU wants polls this year

Aug 4 (SAMN) The Venerable Omelpe Sobitha Thera, General Secretary of the Jathika Hela Urumaya, has filed a fundamental rights violation plea in the Supreme Court, requesting the court, to direct the Election Commissioner to hold the next Presidential poll in the year 2005 and not 2006. more..

SLMC to meet Ranil, Mahinda

Aug 4 (SAMN) The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress will decide on which Presidential candidate it will support after meeting both Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse and opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe. An SLMC spokesperson said that they intend meeting both candidates shortly with a view to setting out Muslim grievances and obtaining written undertakings of the redress that would be granted. more..

LTTE hook up with Euro sat Propaganda broadcasts to SAARC region Though illegal, Govt. to play deaf and blind

Aug 4 (LNP) The government will not challenge the LTTE`s decision to launch satellite broadcasts to South East Asia, covering the entire SAARC region, from a secret location in the Vanni, The Island learns. Well informed sources said that the government would not confront the LTTE over this issue. more..

`Task force` head, intelligence deputy desert LTTE?

Aug 4 (LNP) In an apparent setback to the LTTE, a senior LTTE leader and the head of its special task force has reportedly deserted the organization along with deputy LTTE head of the Jaffna intelligence unit, military sources said. more..

Govt fails to rebuild tsunami-destroyed hospitals

Aug 4 (wsws) Being one of the most economically backward regions of Sri Lanka, the infrastructure was poor in the Eastern Province even before the December 26 tsunami. Coming on top of two decades of civil war, the tidal waves dealt a severe blow to the health sector along the coastal Ampara district. more..

Survivors to curse tsunami aid swindlers

Aug 4 (AFP) Exasperated tsunami survivors in Sri Lanka have formed an association to "curse" officials and organisations siphoning off local and international aid, a press report said Thursday. more..

Three injured Sri Lankans to take fitness test Friday

Aug 4 (IANS) Three key injured Sri Lankan cricketers - Sanath Jayasuriya, Chaminda Vaas and Nuwan Zoysa - are slowly showing improvement but are still not fit for the host teams' One Day International encounter against West Indies Saturday, more..

Tax evasion widespread in Sri Lanka: official

Aug 4 (IANS) A Sri Lankan revenue official Thursday called for a legislation make income tax payment compulsory pointing out that nearly one million people were evading the tax net, reports Xinhua. more..

Leader of the House of Sri Lanka parliament resigns

Aug 4 (TN) The General Secretary of the ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and Senior Minister Mr. Maithiripala Sirisena resigned from his position as Leader of the House Wednesday night, Sri Lanka Government sources said. more..

Sri Lanka rebels: truce pointless if killings go on

Aug 4 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels warned on Thursday that a 3-1/2-year ceasefire will lose meaning unless the government ensures no more of their cadres are killed while conducting political work in military-held areas. more..

JHU condemns US stand on anti-conversion bill

Aug 5 (TN) The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) in a letter to the United States Ambassador Mr.Jeffry Lunstead stated that "ultra fundamentalists group offer money and other financial benefits to our people and even the established Catholic and Christian Churches are against and have condemned these acts committed by these groups," more..

Jaffna SSP kidnapped & killed

Aug 5 (BBC) SSP, Jaffna Charles Wijewardena has been kidnapped and killed in Jaffna while he was travelling to Inuvil to investigate a shooting incident. Inspector General of Police Chandra Fernando confirmed that the senior superintendent was killed. more..

Reporters' group concerned by President's comment

Aug 5 (AP) The Committee to Protect Journalists, a New York-based reporters' rights group, said it was alarmed that Sri Lanka's president has accused senior local journalist Iqbal Athas of publishing information damaging to the country. more..

Police curfew is in force in the government controlled areas in Jaffna

Aug 5 (SLBC) The police curfew is in force from last night to 6.00 am tomorrow in the government controlled areas in Jaffna. Media spokesman of the army Brigadier Daya Ratnayake told SLBC that the curfew was brought in the area to ease the tense situation triggered, following the assassination of SP of Jaffna police Charles Wijewardena yesterday by a mob. more..

Cabinet decides to continue the activities of the coordination secretariat of the peace process

Aug 5 (SLBC) The cabinet has decided to continue the activities of the coordination secretariat of the peace process. Government media spokesman Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva at a media briefing held yesterday said that accordingly, the cabinet has approved to carry on the activities of the secretariat from January to December next year. more..

Presidential election case to be taken up for inquiry

Aug 5 (TN) Three-member bench of the Supreme Court is to commence its inquiry Friday into the petition filed by the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) regarding the date of Sri Lanka Presidential election. JHU has sought the Supreme Court to order the Election Commissioner to hold the Presidential election before the end of this year, more..

VAT for Milk powder & gas withdrawn

Aug 5 (LT) The cabinet which met on Wednesday had taken several decisions for the benefits of the masses said Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, the cabinet spokesman. VAT levied when importing milk powder and gas has been removed, paying an allowance of Rs.4000/- for CWE employees and development of Katunayake International Airport are some of them. more..

People protest Tigers’ recruitment campaign

Aug 5 (LT) Wanni Tigers’ Organisation has requested the residents in the Jaffna district to enroll their Special Task Force. They have also been told that a monthly salary of Rs. 8500.00 will be paid to them. Sources from Jaffna say that posters had been displayed in Jaffna town in protest against this appeal. more..

CWE hunger strike ends in victory

Aug 5 (LT) The continuous hunger strike by the employees of CWE which lasted 22 days ended with the government agreeing to grant their demands. The employees of CWE continued with their hunger strike for 22 days. Their main demand was that the retail section of the CWE sold to the private sector by the previous UNP government and was mismanaged by the authorities to be taken over by the government. more..

Arrest Mervin Silva immediately - Colombo Additional Magistrate

Aug 5 (LT) Mervin Silva, Deputy Minister of Labour Relations and Foreign Employment is to be immediately taken into custody and produced before courts. Mr. Gihan Pilapitiya, Additional Magistrate of Colombo has given this order as Mr. Mervin Silva had failed to present himself in court to give evidence in a case involving misappropriation of money. more..

British biography ‘CBK’ out: Australian on the way

Aug 5 (AT) “I don’t know what is in this book,” President Chandrika Kumaratunga openly admitted when someone asked her about the book ‘CBK’ – a biography written by a British writer Graeme Wilson, who had authored other biographies of Tony Blair and Margaret Thatcher. more..

Helgesen arrives in Colombo

Aug 5 (AT) Norwegian deputy foreign minister Vidar Helgesen arrived in Colombo to discuss the ways and means of strengthening the fragile ceasefire amidst deteriorating situation in the north and east Sri Lanka. The visit takes place at a time when continuous killings by suspected Tamil rebels on government soldiers, informants and rival Tamil politicians, and factional fighting within the rebel group have threatened the ceasefire. more..

PM wants to go to Madhu

Aug 5 (SAMN) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse has made a special request from the LTTE to provide necessary facilities for him to participate as a special invitee in the final day service of the Madhu feast. The premier has made this request from the LTTE because the Madhu Church is situated in the LTTE-controlled area in the Wanni. more..

Two new universities this month

Aug 5 (LNP) TWO new universities will be started this month, the Education Ministry said yesterday. The University at Uva Wellassa modelled along a new concept focusing on Science and Technology, Export Agriculture and Animal Science and Computer Technology will be opened on August 7. more..

JHU to field its own Presidential Candidate

Aug 5 (LNP) The Jathika Hela Urumaya`s campaign for the forthcoming Presidential Elections will be based on the promise to maintain the unitary nature of the state with a commitment to defeating LTTE terrorism through military force, former DIG and Treasurer of the JHU H. M. G. B. Kotakadeniya said yesterday. more..

Slain Police Superintendent's remains brought home

Aug 5 (SLA) Remains of the late Superintended of Police (SP) Mr. W. D CHARLES WIJEWARDENE, who was brutally hacked to death by LTTE incited mobs in PALAVODAI, JAFFNA after accidental discharge of a soldier’s weapon killed a barber inside a public saloon, were flown to KURUNEGALA Hospital late night on Thursday (04) for post-mortem and subsequent funeral arrangements. more..

Grenade lobbed at EPDP office in Colombo

Aug 5 (TN) The office of the EPDP leader Mr. Douglas Devananda came under a grenade attack around 11:40 p.m. Thursday, Police sources said. There were no casualities reported but a big noise due to the explosion echoed throughout the highly residential Park road, Colombo 5, the area where the EPDP office is located. more..

Police curfew disrupts normal life in Jaffna

Aug 5 (TN) All roads in Sri Lanka Army (SLA) controlled areas in Jaffna district almost deserted due to the police curfew imposed from Thursday night around 8.30 p.m. Schools did not function. Government offices did not open. Normalcy has been disrupted, civil and media sources in Jaffna said. more..

Kaluwanchikudy LTTE political office attacked

Aug 5 (TN) Unidentified men attacked Kaluwanchikudy political office of the LTTE Friday early morning. At least five hand grenades were lobbed inside the office premises, Kaluwanchikudy police said. The attackers entered the Special Task Force (STF) camp located around 100 meters from the scene, more..

CFA, P-TOMS discussed in Helgesen, Kumaratunga meeting

Aug 5 (TN) The Norwegian Depurty Foreign Minister and the facilitator of the peace process Mr. Vidar Helgesen met Sri Lanka's President Ms. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga at her official residence Thursday night, Presidential Secretariat sources said. more..

Presidential candidates must announce stance on Muslims -SLMC Leader

Aug 5 (LM) Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) national leader Rauff Hakeem MP has called upon leaders of the two major political parties which have already announced their presidential candidates to openly disclose their policy with regard to the legitimate rights of the Muslim community, hitherto denied. more..

Govt. should solve three crises in country -UNP

Aug 5 (LT) There are three crises in the country and the government should act to solve them says the UNP. This was stated by UNP Parliamentarian Keheliya Rambukwsella in a media meeting yesterday. According to him the three crises are the national question, the crisis in the economy and tsunami constructions. more..

Poll date: No direction so far from CJ

Aug 5 (SAMN) The Supreme Court’s Deputy Registrar said yesterday there were no instructions so far from the Chief Justice with regard to the hearing on the opinion sought by the President about the date of the next Presidential election. more..

President deplores murder of SSP Wijewardena

Aug 5 (PRIU) President Chandrika Kumaratunga has denounced the unfortunate shooting incident in a barber saloon in Innuvil, on Thursday, the 04th of August 2005 involving two Army personnel, which tragically led to the killing of an employee of the saloon and the consequent killing of the Superintendent of Police, Mr. Charles Wijewardena. more..

Sri Lanka shake off injury concerns

Aug 5 (CI) Sri Lanka will pick their starting XI for their final group game against West Indies on Saturday from a full squad after Sanath Jayasuriya (shoulder), Chaminda Vaas (hamstring) and Nuwan Zoysa (back) all passed fitness tests at the team's training session on Friday morning. more..

Government slashes 15% VAT on milk powder, gas

Aug 5 (DN) In a meaningful step to arrest the rising cost of living and ease the burden on the consumer, the Government has decided to remove the 15 per cent VAT imposed on powdered milk and Liquid Petroleum (LP) Gas. more..