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Over 100 migrant workers return

Dec 10 (SAMN) Consequent to an initiative directed by the Minister of Labour, Athauda Senevirathna, over 100 migrant workers returned Colombo, both on the night of December 8 and morning of December 9, Deputy General Manager of the Sri Lanka Foreign Employment Bureau L. K. Ruhunuge told The Island. more..

Oslo wants to know stand of JVP and JHU

Dec 10 (LNP) The Norwegian peace facilitators yesterday stressed the importance of President Mahinda Rajapakse`s government obtaining the assurance of its allies if Oslo and the SLMM were to effectively continue their work in Sri Lanka. more..

Mahinda, CBK crash on vehicles

Dec 10 (LNP) In the midst of continuing differences between President Mahinda Rajapakse and former President Chandrika Kumaratunga, a heated exchange of words had reportedly taken place between the two when officials of the President`s office attempted to take back two state-owned vehicles used by Ms. Kumaratunga`s staff. more..

Battle over ghee exports to India

Dec 10 (SAMN) The government has dismissed a move to accommodate, what a well informed source termed as, a politically connected company, in the lucrative Vanaspati (vegetable ghee) industry. The company had won BOI approval on the day of the November 17 presidential election, The Island learns. more..

Forces, police pledge not to fall into Tiger snare

Dec 10 (LNP) The Tri Services Chiefs and the Inspector General of Police yesterday pledged that they will uphold the Oslo arranged Peace Agreement to the letter and warned that the isolated provocative acts by the LTTE will not be tolerated at all. They said the armed forces will take every step to prevent such violence. more..

Persecuted North East Muslims petition LTTE chief

Dec 10 (HT) The LTTE chief, Velupillai Prabhakaran, has asked his district-level units to allay the fears of the Muslims in Sri Lanka's North Eastern Province, who had petitioned him about the killings, abductions and threats they were receiving allegedly from the LTTE. more..

India ride on Tendulkar hundred

Dec 10 (CI) On the same day when he equalled Sunil Gavaskar's tally of 125 Test appearances and on the same ground where Gavaskar equalled Don Bradman's record 29 hundreds, Sachin Tendulkar blended solid defiance with controlled aggression and reached a much-anticipated landmark, putting India in firm control of the second Test at Delhi. more..

Two Tamils abducted and killed in Sri Lanka's volatile east

Dec 10 (AP) Suspected members of a breakaway Tamil Tiger faction abducted and killed two Tamil men with alleged links to the mainstream rebel group, police and rebels said Saturday. The men were allegedly snatched from their homes in eastern Valaichenai town on Friday night, more..

Cyclonic storm bypassing Sri Lanka, heading toward southern India

Dec 10 (AP) A major cyclonic storm on Saturday was bypassing Sri Lanka and heading toward southern India, the weather office here said, however, warning of heavy rains in Sri Lanka's northeast. more..

Rebels warn Sri Lanka: Last chance to avert war

Dec 10 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's government faces its final opportunity to avert a return to civil war, the Tamil Tigers have warned, vowing to use all available resources to fight unless given a homeland. more..

Tigers demand urgent talks to defuse Sri Lanka war fears

Dec 10 (AFP) Tamil Tiger rebels have asked Norway to arrange urgent peace talks with Colombo to prevent Sri Lanka from sliding back into war after 31 people died in a week of violence, a report on their website said. more..

Sri Lankan family lives in fear of deportation

Dec 11 (BT) Sri Lankan family members who were forced to flee their homeland and sought refuge in Northern Ireland are living in dread of being deported. The Somasundrams are desperately appealing to the Government to let them stay after a son was murdered and other family members brutally treated by Tamil Tigers and the Sri Lankan army. more..

Shock therapy for Sri Lanka's tsunami-hit children

Dec 11 (DPA) When the sea suddenly rose and the water came into their home during last year's tsunami, Santina lost her home and two sisters. A year later, the 15-year-old was brought back to the same place to get over the worst nightmare of her life. more..

CID to interrogate Mannar suspects in Colombo

Dec 11 (TN) Mannar Magistrate Thursday agreed to an application by Police to send the five Tamil persons arrested by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) on Tuesday evening to Colombo for further investigation by the CID. The five, including two women, were arrested in Pallimunai Sea in Mannar district when they were traveling in a boat, more..

Fanoos leaves thousands homeless in Jaffna

Dec 11 (TN) Effects of cyclonic storm Fanoos which passed throught Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry coast was felt in Jaffna district, as hurricane force winds and heavy rains belted Jaffna distric from Friday night leaving thousands displaced in Vadamaradchy north and east. more..

Akashi visits Amparai

Dec 11 (TN) Mr. Yasushi Akashi, representative of the Government of Japan for Peace-building, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction in Sri Lanka, arrived Saturday morning in Amparai and held separate meetings with Muslim, Sinhala and Tamil delegations comprising of civil society members, more..

Trinco hospital gets new X-ray Plant

Dec 11 (TN) Mr.Krishanth Hewage, Private Secretary of the North East Governor Mr.Tyronne Fernando, declared open the newly constructed X-ray unit at a cost of one million rupees and commissioned the X-ray plant Thursday. The project was carried out from money allocated from the Governor's Capital Fund, sources said. more..

Nation Building

Dec 11 (WS) I read the other day a somewhat strange article that suggested that the new President would benefit from the experience and ability of the leader of the Opposition. Since the last two occasions on which Ranil Wickremesinghe was in power were not exactly successful, for the country or for his party, I was wondering what was intended. more..

CWC major decision after Thondaman returns

Dec 11 (WS) Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) Leader Arumugam Thondaman who has gone to see his father undergoing treatment at a Chennai hospital is expected to take a major decision to join the government on his return. more..

EPDP seeks international help

Dec 11 (WS) The Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) has sought the International Community's immediate intervention to put an end to the LTTE's recent intensified military activities in the North and East. more..

Govt. should act

Dec 11 (BBC) The release of the three policemen detained by the LTTE now seems to have hung over a demand to swap of LTTE cadres arrested by the security forces. A wife of a detained policeman told Sandesaya that they held a protest in front of the office of the SLMM on Friday, December 9 because they failed in every efforts made to get the policemen released. more..

SLMC seeks meeting with President Mahinda Rajapakse

Dec 11 (AT) The country's pre dominant Muslim party, the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) has sought an appointment from President Mahinda Rajapakse to discuss the recent volatile situation prevailing in the North and East provinces. more..

US NGO exhibits tsunami relief photos

Dec 11 (TN) Operation USA, a NGO based in US, held a photo exhibition featuring tsunami relief activities carried out in the NorthEast by TRO and other relief agencies. More than 300 photographs were on display at the exhibition which opened for public Thursday 7 p.m. at the Operation USA offices at Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles. more..

Two Indian naval ships arrive in Colombo on goodwill visit

Dec 11 (UNI) Two Indian naval ships, including an offshore petrol vessel INS Sukanya from the Eastern Fleet, have arrived in Colombo harbour today on a week-long visit from Vishakhapatnam as the part of their goodwill visit around the globe. more..

Peace process and facing the reality

Dec 11 (LS) LTTE has specialised the art of use of violence to achieve what they want. They know when to slow down, when to make it sporadic and when to escalate. The recent escalation of violence directly against the security forces was a calculated move, as a part of their strategy, which in fact shocked every one, including the international community with surprise. more..

Illicit brew kills 10 in Matara

Dec 11 (Xinhua) At least 10 people have died while 48 others have been admitted to hospital for consuming a contaminated local brew of alcohol, medical officials in the southern town of Matara. The victims originally complained of breathing difficulties and excessive vomiting, said KI Padmathunga, the director of the Matara Hospital. more..

Ayubowan, visitor!

Dec 11 (TS) Early Arab traders called Sri Lanka Serendib. This is the word that gave rise to ‘serendipity’, which means ‘the faculty of making happy and unexpected discoveries by accident’. Those traders knew what they were about when they named this island off the tip of India. more..

Akashi won’t go to Kilinochchi

Dec 11 (PIS) The assassination of Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar has prompted the Japanese government and one of the Co-Chairs to the Tokyo Donor Conference to suspend bilateral meetings with the LTTE. The visiting Japanese peace envoy Yasushi Akashi will not visit LTTE-held Kilinochchi in keeping with this decision. more..

A new scholarship scheme for children of migrant workers

Dec 11 (SLBC) Foreign Employment Bureau says that scholarship scheme has already begun to provide scholarships to the children of migrant workers. These scholarships will be given to the students who successful at the year five scholarship exam, G.C.E. O-level and those students who follow higher studies. more..

December 15th to be declared International Tea Day

Dec 11 (SLBC) December 15th will be declared as the International Tea Day at an international tea convention in New Delhi this week. Ministers, trade unionists, representatives of tea small holders from Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Kenya, China and other countries will participate at the convention which will be held on Tuesday and Wednesday. more..

It's hectic as ever for leaders

Dec 11 (WS) Both President Mahinda Rajapakse and Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe who have been literally over worked since the election may have got a little breather towards the end of last week. more..

Policeman killed, LTTE cadre abducted from Vavuniya Hospital

Dec 11 (TN) Unidentified gunmen shot and killed an armed policeman inside the Vavuniya Hospital premises and abucted Ms Gunaratnam Puveneswari who was undergoing treatment at the hospital under police custody. The incident took place around 2:45 p.m. Sunday at ward no 1. more..

Will Chandrika be fired from SLFP leadership?

Dec 11 (LeN) A senior vice president of the SLFP told Lanka e News that a decision would be taken at tomorrow's office bearers' meeting whether Chandrika Kumaratunga should be retained as party leader or not. All key decisions of the SLFP on policy matters are first taken at this office bearers' meeting, he pointed out. more..

Dr. Jayalath in LTTE high security zone

Dec 11 (LeN) Dr.Jayalath Jayawardane, the Rehabilitation Minister of the United National Front government last day (9) visited LTTE held areas in Mullaitivu and attended several opening ceremonies with LTTE leaders. more..

Premadasa's people invited for Mahinda Chintana

Dec 11 (LeN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has extended an invitation through his confidantes to those officials who actively took part in development programs launched by former President Ranasinghe Premadsa during his regime. more..

More than 3000 in tiger torture camps! Norwegians turn a blind eye!

Dec 11 (LT) More than 3000 people are being tormented in various torture camps maintained by wanni tiger organization throughout the un-cleared areas. More than 2000 of them are children say sources. Children and Sinhalese, Muslim and Tamil people abducted from various places in the North and the East are being detained in these camps. more..

At Temple Trees or Darley Road?

Dec 11 (SAMN) Where should the SLFP central committee meeting be held – at the party’s T.B. Jayah Mawatha (Darley Road) headquarters or at Temple Trees? This is the newest issue in the shadow boxing match that is now going on between President Mahinda Rajapakse and his predecessor, former President Chandrika Kumaratunga, according to senior SLFP sources. more..

'No reason for UNPer to oppose budget'

Dec 11 (SAMN) There is no reason for any UNPer to oppose the Government's new Budget proposals because the country has been directed along the correct track through the Mahinda Chinthanaya programme, said Speaker W.J.M. Lokubandara when he attended the 2004 Raigam Tele Awards Ceremony at the BMICH, Colombo on Thursday. more..

Customs earn Rs 25m non-targetted income

Dec 11 (SAMN) It is a little known fact that nothing can be imported to Sri Lanka without a license. The import control act of 1969 is affective at present. There is a misconception that regulation for special import licences, better known as open general licence, is that imports can be made without a licence. This is incorrect. more..

Let`s wait for delivery

Dec 11 (LNP) The UNP didn`t boycott this budget like they did Sarath Amunugama`s last effort; and for good reason. Mahinda Rajapakse had won the election and was fully entitled to hand round the goodies promised in his Chintanaya given that he has a strong mandate from the Sinhala Buddhist rural heartland, more..

Crackdown on errant medics

Dec 11 (LNP) In order to provide a better health service to people, the Health care and Nutrition Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva has focused special attention on strengthening and upgrading the activities in the Supervision and Flying Squad Unit (SFSU) of the Health Department to crackdown on doctors indulging in private channelling during office hours. more..

Fanoos spares Jaffna

Dec 11 (LNP) The Meteorology Department said yesterday that the cyclone `Fanoos` was centred about 70km Northeast of Jaffna at 9.00 a.m. and was unlikely to hit the North - East coastal belt. Deputy Director of Met Department S.H.Kariyawasam said `based on previous motions of the cyclone we could say that it would not hit the coastal belt. more..

Former President Kumaratunga denies impropriety

Dec 11 (SO) The office of President Kumaratunga has observed several erroneous reports in the press, especially the State media, that a sum in excess of Rs. 750 million had been improperly paid out from the President's Fund by President Kumaratunga. more..

Kumble strikes after Murali's magic

Dec 11 (CI) On a day when two legendary spinners strutted their stuff, the pendulum swung from one side to another before India edged ahead in an engrossing battle at Delhi. Muttiah Muralitharan's sorcery engineered a sensational collapse and Sri Lanka solidified their advantage with two contrasting half-centuries but Anil Kumble ensured India had the final say with a flurry of wickets late in the day. more..

A tale of two spinners

Dec 11 (CI) An overwhelming explosion of positive emotion bathed the Indian team when the first day's play ended, with Sachin Tendulkar walking off the field head held high, bat in the air. On the second morning though Muttiah Muralitharan, a little champion in his own right, pulled the rug from under the Indians, with a manic twirl of the wrists. more..

Afghans stun Sri Lanka for maiden SAFF win

Dec 11 (FA) Afghanistan defeated Sri Lanka 2-1 in their final Group A match, which while not a classic by any means, will be remembered for the spirited showing that gave the Afghans their first ever SAFF Championship win. more..

Kaluperuma on Sanath's omission from Tests

Dec 11 (WS) Chairman of selectors, Lalith Kaluperuma has made a statement regarding the omission of Sanath Jayasuriya from the Sri Lankan squad for the Tests in India. Even the President Mahinda Rajapakse has requested that a inquiry be made into the incident. more..

LTTE confers 'National Patriot' titles on murdered sisters to cover up their own murderous acts

Dec 11 (AT) According to political analysts, LTTE is increasingly using its "National Patriot" title to cover up their murders. This was confirmed by the LTTE awarding for the recently slain sisters, Yogarasa Yogeswary and Thurairasa Vathany. more..

Mistaking the Tiger for Tamil (Once Again)

Dec 11 (AT) So the first round of the battle between the LTTE and the Mahinda Rajapakse administration went to the Tigers. It could not have been otherwise given the delusions that the new President and his allies seem to be labouring under. more..

Sri Lanka 'concern' at peace role

Dec 11 (BBC) Sri Lanka has expressed concern over remarks by Norway that it will resume as a peace mediator only if certain conditions are met. The government was "displeased" that Norway had made such comments public, media and official sources said. President Mahinda Rajapakse asked Norway on Wednesday to resume its peace mediating role with the Tamil Tigers. more..