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Tamil Tigers ready to resume peace talks with government

Dec 2 (Xinhua) Tamil Tiger rebels told the international truce monitors Thursday that they are ready to resume peace talks with the new government at any time. The head of SLMM Hagrup Hauklandmet with the political wing leader of the LTTE S. P. Thamilselvan at the rebel-held Kilinochchi district in the Northern Province. more..

Saying it with flowers - Tsunami survivors show pride in their new homes

Dec 2 (RW) A recent competition among tsunami survivors living in one IOM transitional shelter site to beautify their environment and take pride in where they lived, was met with resounding success. more..

Two farmers shot dead, one wounded in Neerveli, Jaffna

Dec 2 (TN) Unidentified assailants shot and killed two farmers at a tea shop close to Athiyar Hindu College in Neerveli at 8 p.m. Thursday. A youth who was standing inside the tea shop was seriously wounded and was rushed to Jaffna Hospital, civilian sources said. more..

Man who motivates Malvern gets award

Dec 2 (g&M) Three teens dressed in hoodies, baggy pants and basketball sneakers were walking along Sewells Road in Malvern yesterday afternoon, when a second, larger group of young people approach from behind. "Yo, this guy is whack!" yells one of the kids. more..

LS Industrial Systems of Korea promotes electrical and automation systems

Dec 2 (AT) Local sole representative for LS Industrial Systems of Korea, affiliated to the LG group says that globally known LG group of Korea has been divided into three groups to reinforce the global competitiveness by specializing business divisions. more..

Heroes Day address positive, says Sri Lanka

Dec 2 (Hindu) The Sri Lankan Government on Thursday described as "positive" the recent Heroes Day address by leader of the LTTE V. Prabakaran. It said it would act with "responsibility" to the rebel demand for a reasonable political framework by next year. more..

Confessions of an ageing guerrilla

Dec 2 (Hindu) FOR YEARS, analysts only guessed that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam used ceasefires, peace processes, and talks as tactics to further their cause of establishing a separate Tamil state in Sri Lanka. Or as someone put it in Jaffna idiom, these were bus halts on the journey to Eelam. more..

All fertilizers at 350 rupees

Dec 2 (LT) The government has taken steps to sell all kinds of fertilizers at 350 rupees. The new decision will come into effect from next Monday. This decision follows the cabinet paper presented by president Mahinda Rajapaksha to the first cabinet meeting of the new government. more..

22 children among Aids patients in Sri Lanka

Dec 2 (LT) Several programmes had been organized in different parts of Sri Lanka to mark the World Aids Prevention Day which fell yesterday. The aim underlying these programmes was to educate people about how to abstain from contracting Aids. more..

CBK’s attempt to ‘address the nation’ fails!

Dec 2 (LT) Former President Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga had asked an opportunity speak to the Nation from the heads of state media. However, the heads of state media had pointed out that there was no tradition in the state media to allow a former president to make a speech to the Nation and had said they were not in a position to comply with her request. more..

CBK to obstruct Mahinda’s man entering Parliament

Dec 2 (LT) Internal sources of the SLFP says former president Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga has decided to name Mr. Reginald Cooray, Chief Minister of the Western Provincial Council to fill the vacancy in the parliament created by the murder of former Foreign Minister Laxman Kadirgamar. more..

Time to change - CBK bids farewell

Dec 2 (BBC) President Chandrika Kumratunge in a farewell speech Thursday said that time has come to take revolutionary changes in the history of Sri Lanka. In her speech she said "The history of nations have amply demonstrated that there are moments when leaders are called upon to effect revolutionary changes, which necessarily cause some dissatisfaction amongst some groups" more..

Tamil Tigers receiving Norwegian aid, paper says

Dec 2 (ANN) The LTTE terrorist outfit is continuing to receive direct Norwegian aid. According to a Norwegian newspaper New Times, the group has received 25 million kroner (US$3 million) since the Oslo-led peace process began in early 2002. more..

Murder of civilians precipitates public protests

dec 2 (SLA) A SHOOTING carried out by a group of unidentified assailants in the general area of NEERVELI in JAFFNA at about 8.45 p.m. on Thursday (01) night claimed the lives of two civilians and injured another one. more..

Bus with dynamite capsules arrested

dec 2 (SLA) Policemen arrested fifty-six dynamite sticks from a private bus at PERIYANKADAL on Monday (01) around 1.30 p.m. while it was moving from MEDAWACHCHIYA to MANNAR area. The bus with those explosives was handed over to MANNAR Police for further investigations.

One more teenager runs away from LTTE and surrenders

Dec 2 (SLA) A SIXTEEN-YEAR-OLD BOY, employed by the LTTE affiliated Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) was subsequently abducted and detained by Tamil Tigers at an LTTE camp off SAMPOOR in TRINCOMALEE but the victim managed to run away from LTTE clutches and surrendered to the Police post at MUTTUR on Wednesday (30). more..

Kattankudy Divisional Secretary shot

Dec 2 (TN) Two unknown motorbike-riding gunmen shot and wounded Mr. A.L.M. Falleel, the Divisional Secreatary of Kattankudy, at his office around 12:40 p.m. Friday, Police said. The DS, with gunshot injuries in his head and chest, was rushed to Batticaloa hospital. Kattankudy, a muslim town, is located 5 km south of Batticaloa town. more..

UNP attacks against JVP in Badulla!

Dec 2 (LT) Mr. Priyanthe Warshamana, JVP organizer for Haliela in Badulla District has been hacked and the vehicle belonging to Mr. Samanthe Waidyaratne, JVP Parliamentarian for Badulla District and former Deputy Minister of Culture and National Heritage in the Alliance Government has been taken away. more..

Chandrika's Tsunami committees do away with

Dec 2 (LeN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa today established a new institution named the 'Institution for Reconstruction and Development' to rehabilitate people and areas affected by the tsunami. The new institution will replace three task forces and committees appointed by ex-President. more..

Hela Urumaya upset over omission of Buddha Sasana Ministry

Dec 2 (LeN) The JHU has expressed grave concern over the removal of the Buddha Sasana Ministry from the Cabinet by the Sri Rohana Janaranjana President Mahinda Rajapaksa. When the constitution has guaranteed to protect and nurture Buddhism, there is only a Rligious Affairs Ministry in the Rajapaksa government even though the successive PA and UNP governments had cabinet portfolio for Buddha Sasana. more..

UNP calls on President to disclose his peace agenda

Dec 2 (LeN) The Assistant General Secretary of the UNP Tissa Attanayake has called on the President to immediately disclose to the country his agenda for the pace process. The president in his manifesto stated that he would amend the cease-fire agreement, but during a meeting last week with diplomats said he would continue with the truce in its present form. more..

President consults all parties on peace talks

Dec 2 (LM) President Mahinda Rajapakse will be consulting political party leaders next week to discuss matters regarding the peace process, prior to resuming direct talks with the LTTE, the government announced yesterday. Constitutional Affairs Minister D.E.W. Gunasekara said there would be bilateral and joint discussions with the parties in a bid to arrive at a consensus with Southern political parties on the ethnic issue. more..

Anton Balasingam's speech in London draws fire from Tamil expatriates

Dec 2 (CT) LTTE's chief negotiator Anton Balasingam's speech at the Hero's day event has drawn strong criticism among Tamil expatriates living in Europe. LTTE's annual Hero's day event was held last Sunday (November 27th) at the Wembley Arena in the outskirts of London. more..

SRI LANKA: Apparel exports to US grew by 9.5 percent

Dec 2 (BT) Sri Lankan apparel exports to the US grew by 9.5 percent to bring in US$ 1,217.5 million from January to September this year, compared to the US$ 1,112.2 million during the same period in 2004. Chairman of the Sri Lanka Apparel Exporters Association, A. Sukumaran said here on December 01. more..

Lanka's Tsunami victims to benefit from UN agri loans

Dec 2 (PTI) Some 140,000 surviving Sri Lankan households which lost their livelihoods in last December's tsunami, will benefit from new United Nations agricultural development loans to help replace infrastructure and equipment for fishing communities, as well as restore coral reefs and replant vital coastal vegetation. more..

Rotary to dedicate first school rebuilt after Tsunami

Dec 2 (RW) A primary school destroyed in the Tsunami will reopen as a completely rebuilt model school at a ceremony next week. The Randombe Junior School, located in Ambalangoda, in the Galle District, will be officially dedicated on 8 December at 9:45 a.m. more..

Mahinda has secret pact with LTTE: UNP

Dec 2 (SAMN) The UNP Thursday charged that the UPFA which misled the people with the canard about an “Ali-Koti Hora Givisuma” had entered into a secret pact with the LTTE to win the Presidential election. more..

Rebels want Karu as UNP, opp leader

Dec 2 (SAMN) The perception that UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe survived a challenge to his leadership appears to be erroneous with the rebels vowing to oust him. The rebel group insists that Wickremesinghe must step down immediately and pave the way for Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya’s ascent to the leadership. more..

Apologises at circus for beating up wife

Dec 2 (SAMN) In a classic punishment for a crime against women, an accused who had pleaded guilty to causing injuries to his wife and mother-in-law opted to make a public apology with a board strung around his neck at Lipton’s Circus daily for six months instead of serving 23 years in jail. more..

Mervyn promises to be a `good boy`

Dec 2 (LNP) The Deputy Labour Relations Minister Dr. Mervyn Silva yesterday expressed his regret over an incident where he had entered a newspaper office and had abused and threatened journalists. He assured the Colombo Magistrate that he would never threaten journalists again. more..

Death to father for dashing infant daughter to death

Dec 2 (LNP) A man who had dashed his own four-month-old child on the floor after a quarrel with his wife was sentenced to death by Colombo High Court yesterday. Colombo High Court judge W.A.T. Ratnayake sentenced the accused, Jayasinghage Chaminda Pradeep Kumara of Gothami road, Borella. more..

Legal steps to recover Rs. 10 billion

Dec 2 (LNP) The Government has decided on legal steps to recover an overdue debt of over 10 billion rupees from nine local business concerns to Public Sector Banks, Minister for State Bank Development Wijedasa Rajapakse P.C., said on Wednesday (30). more..

Historic gathering of women human rights defenders closes in Sri Lanka

Dec 2 (AI) “Every day activists across the world suffer serious abuses in the course of their work as women human rights defenders. Many women have already paid with their lives for their courage and commitment to the defence of human rights,” says Sunila Abeysekera, Director of INFORM (Sri Lanka), more..

Concrete plans to uplift estate sector - Milroy

Dec 2 (DN) Overall short-term and long-term plans will be formulated to maximise export productivity as well as enhance the living conditions of the plantation community, Plantation Industries Minister Milroy Fernando said. more..

A narrow victory

Dec 2 (FL) ON November 18, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse could not have received a better birthday gift on turning 60 than being declared elected the island-nation's fifth Executive President. Jubilant supporters burst firecrackers and welcomed him as he arrived at the office of the Commissioner of Elections to receive the result. more..

The LTTE's silent vote

Dec 2 (FL) WITHOUT firing a single shot the LTTE made its impact on Sri Lanka's fifth presidential election on November 17 and showed it could determine the course of the country's politics. The presidential election is devised to ensure that all ethnic, linguistic and religious groupings have a say in the election of the constitutionally powerful head of state and government. more..

Sri Lanka Names General to Lead Army

Dec 2 (AP) Sri Lanka's hawkish new president appointed a battle-hardened commander to lead the military on Friday, just days after Tamil rebels threatened to resume a violent separatist campaign if their demands are not met. more..

The tsunami: Living in transition

Dec 2 (BBC) Just under half a million Sri Lankan people were displaced by the tsunami that hit the island's coastline on the morning of 26 December 2004. Nearly a year on, many are still living in refugee camps, waiting for government and aid agency help to rebuild their homes. more..

LTTE naval wing not a major threat: India

Dec 2 (IANS) India is wary of the naval wing of Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers but believes it is still not strong enough to play a destabilizing role in regional waters, the navy chief said here Friday. more..

India must play more active role in Sri Lanka: Norway

Dec 2 (IANS) Norway wants India to play a more active role in Sri Lanka's peace process and try to bring about a closer understanding between the island's two main political parties on the ethnic conflict. more..

Sri Lanka's north strikes in protest at killings

Dec 2 (Reuters) Protesters burned barricades and blocked major roads in Sri Lanka's government-held Jaffna peninsula on Friday as part of a general strike over the killing of two Tamil men. They blamed the government and the EPDP, an anti-rebel minority Tamil party that is an alliance partner of new President Mahinda Rajapakse, for the killings. more..

Opening day of India – Lanka Test match washed out

Dec 2 (AP) Rain returned to torment cricketers on Friday as the opening day’s play in the first test match between India and Sri Lanka was washed out without a ball being bowled, underscoring the difficulty of scheduling games during the monsoon season. more..

Prabhakaran's expectations from Rajapaksa

Dec 2 (HT) The LTTE Supremo, Velupillai Prabhakaran, has given Sri Lanka's new President, Mahinda Rajapaksa, time until next year to come out with a "reasonable" proposal to solve the vexed Tamil question. more..

Former president's budget irks Sri Lanka court

Dec 2 (AFP) Sri Lanka's Supreme Court Friday questioned the "excessively high" budget of former president amid allegations that large sums of state funds had been misappropriated just before her retirement. more..

Sri Lanka revised 2006 budget likely to have more welfare

Dec 3 (DJ) A new budget that the Sri Lankan government will announce next week to fulfill some of the new President's election promises is likely to contain welfare measures and help for farmers. However, the new spending is not expected to lead to a deficit blowout, more..

Lankan peace process must be facilitated, supported: India

Dec 3 (PTI) India today emphasised that the Sri Lankan peace process needed to be "facilitated and supported" as Norwegian negotiator Eric Solheim, arrived here and held talks with senior officials on the issue. more..

Rs.29 million for CBK

Dec 3 (BBC) Chief justice Sarath N Silva has expressed his disappointment in open courts as to how a large sum of money has been allocated from next year's budget for former President Chandrika Kumaratunge. Rs.29 million has been allocated for President Kumaratunge front the budget for 2006. more..

Sri Lankan president to visit India on Dec 16

Dec 3 (IRNA) Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse is likely to pay a three-day official visit to India from December 16. During the visit Rajapakse will discuss the entire gamut of India-Sri Lanka relations with Indian leaders besides the initiative being taken by his government regarding the peace process with the LTTE, more..

New president confronts same impasse as predecessor

Dec 3 (wsws) Less than a week after forming his new cabinet, President Mahinda Rajapakse met with senior foreign diplomats in Colombo on November 28 to try to dispel unease over his policies. The central issue is the new government’s attitude toward the ceasefire agreement signed with the LTTE in 2002 and the fate of the peace process that has stalled for more than two years. more..

Norwegian envoy discusses tenuous truce in Sri Lanka with top Indian official

Dec 3 (AP) Norwegian envoy Eric Solheim met with a top Indian foreign ministry official on Friday and discussed peace prospects in Sri Lanka following the election of hard-liner Mahinda Rajapakse as president, an Indian official said. more..