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Three more claymore mines aimed at troops recovered

Dec 29 (SLA) ALERT TROOPS NOW ENGAGED IN SEARCH AND CLEAR OPERATIONS in the general areas of MANNAR detected three more powerful claymore mines this morning (29) while they had been set to detonate when troops and policemen pass the area. more..

Finally those dead are ours, say LTTE

Dec 29 (SLA) CONTRARY TO WHAT THE LTTE claimed earlier after troops in retaliation shot down five LTTE men when those attackers fired small arms and caused injuries to two Army personnel on a mobile patrol in the JAFFNA fort on Saturday (24), the LTTE cadres with Sri Lanka Red Cross officials have taken away the remains of those LTTE gunmen on Tuesday (27) night around 8.50 p.m. more..

Unimpeded LTTE violence continues as usual

Dec 29 (SLA) THE CONTINUING WAVE OF LTTE (Tamil Tigers) violence, being perpetrated in the north and east against Security Forces, policemen and civilians has during the past twenty four hours, inflicted injuries to three more soldiers and one Police Constable in the general areas of JAFFNA and BATTICALOA. more..

Tamil Tiger in bribery attempt netted

Dec 29 (SLA) A TAMIL TIGER who tried to bribe a soldier against his unchecked entry into cleared areas for an undisclosed mission across the VAVUNATHIVU Entry/Exit point, BATTICALOA was arrested Wednesday (28) around 5.30 p.m. more..

LTTE can kill only our members… not our ideology - PLOTE

Dec 29 (ISL) A senior member and the Vavuniya district political head of the PLOTE, Veerappan Thirupathy was laid to rest at Borella cemetery yesterday evening with a large gathering of PLOTE members paying last respect for the slain member. more..

Sri Lanka's Asian Hotels to build US$ 40 mn condominium

Dec 29 (LBO) John Keells Holdings said Thursday, it plans to construct a US$ 40 million luxury condominium within its existing Crescat City property, a top official said. Built through its subsidiary, Asian Hotels (Pvt) Ltd, the 35-storey tower will come up on a vacant 12 acre property adjoining the group's city five-star, the Cinnamon Grand. more..

Govt finalises investment bank to sell Sathosa land

Dec 29 (LBO) The Trade Ministry says NDB Stockbrokers and NDB Investment Bank would be given the task of selling prime Union Place land belonging to Co-operative Wholesale Establishment, on the stock exchange early next year. The proposed sale hit a snag after a bank which had unpaid loans from Sathosa went to courts to block the sale. more..

Sri Lanka raises 100 million dollars to meet oil import bill

Dec 29 (AFP) Sri Lanka has raised a 100-million-dollar loan from foreign banks to help pay hefty oil import bills that threaten to blow a hole in the country's balance of payments, the Central Bank said Wednesday. Petroleum imports have risen 45 percent to almost 1.4 billion dollars for the 10 months to October due to high oil prices, more..

Prabakaran pays last respect to Pararajasingham

Dec 29 (LeN) LTTE leader Valupillai Prabakaran paid last respect to the slain TNA national list parliamentarian Joseph Pararajasingham at Kilinichchi last night. The TNA legislator was gunned down inside St.Michael's Church, Batticaloa while participating in the Christmas night service. more..

Yahoo Photos

Dec 29 (AFP) India strongly condemned rising violence in Sri Lanka after the island's president Mahinda Rajapakse (left) met Indian Premier Manmohan Singh (right) to discuss Colombo's faltering peace process with Tamil rebels more..

MOD refutes alleged travel restrictions for foreigners

Dec 29 (RW) Ministry of Defense (MoD) drew its attention to certain media reports that attributed to travel restrictions allegedly placed on foreign nationals working for various Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in the north & east of the country. more..

PNM urges UNP to change its white washing policy on Wanni tigers

Dec 29 (LT) Patriotic National Movement issuing a media communiqué urges the UNP to change its white washing policy on Wanni tigers. It says that the UNP which is much pleased with the terrorist activities carried out by the Wanni tigers and is attempting to put the responsibility of this violence on the JVP and the JHU. more..

SLMM fires letter to LTTE demanding the release of the three abducted soldiers

Dec 29 (AT) The SLMM has fired out a letter to the LTTE Peace Secretariat demanding the immediate release of the three abducted sailors. SLMM's acting press and information officer Mats Lundstrom confirmed that a letter had been sent to the LTTE Peace Secretariat by the SLMM Chief Hagrup Haukland, but refused to divulge the contents of the letter. more..

Germany says no to ethnic division of Sri Lanka

Dec 29 (PIS) The German Government is not at any rate prepared to serve the interests of the LTTE to divide Sri Lanka on an ethnic basis or upon any other factor. This was revealed by the German Ambassador in Sri Lanka, Jugan Weerth when he addressed the inauguration of construction work at the proposed Maternity Hospital site at Mahamodera, Galle, recently. more..

Mounting tension sees non-Tamil students quit Jaffna campus

Dec 29 (PIS) As tension mounted in the north and east after the recent spate of killings, around 80 Sinhala and Muslim students vacated the University of Jaffna and left for their hometowns yesterday (28) morning. The students left in the middle of examinations being held at the campus. more..

LTTE denies hand in killings of soldiers

Dec 29 (SAMN) S.P, Thamilselvan head of the LTTE political wing speaking after paying last respects to the late TNA MP Mr Joseph Pararajasingham, said that it had become the norm for Government to blame the LTTE every time the army came under attack. more..

Ministers rebuff president’s orders ?

Dec 29 (SAMN) President Mahinda Rajapakse yesterday sent a directive from New Delhi informing ministers to visit all houses of service personnel killed on Tuesday’s attack in Jaffna, but some senior ministers have reportedly responded saying JVP and JHU members should attend the funeral instead. more..

Dalai Lama to visit Sri Lanka?

Dec 29 (SAMN) The Mahabodhi Society intends to invite the Dalai Lama for the 2550 Buddha Jayanthi commemoration programme. The exiled Tibetan leader had not previously visited Sri Lanka. Although he is believed to have expressed interest in visiting Sri Lanka it never materialised. more..

Graduates warn of action

Dec 29 (SAMN) Graduates recruited for the government service under the Job Drive Programme, vowed yesterday to take trade union action unless the present problems related to their employment are not addressed through negotiations by the government without further delay. more..

Army Chief visits Jaffna

Dec 29 (LNP) With the death toll in the claymore mine attack on the military in Jaffna on Tuesday increasing to 12, Army Commander Sarath Fonseka yesterday visited the Jaffna peninsula to study at first hand the security situation in the area. Military sources said the Army Chief visited several areas and also held talks with senior and junior commanding officers. more..

Tikiri Kobbekaduwa appointed Governor of the Central Province

Dec 29 (LNP) Tikiri Kobbekaduwa the former Sylvestrian opening batsman assumed duties as the Governor of the Centrol Province at a ceremony held at the Governor`s residence in Kandy before a large and representative crowd.Tikiri Kobbekaduwa was an elegant batsman who had the staying powers to accumulate runs with grace and elegance. more..

Govt. lackadaisical in face of killings: UNP

Dec 29 (LNP) The main opposition United National Party yesterday charged that there had been 81 killings in the first 31 days of President Mahinda Rajapakse`s term in office and that the response of the Government to the breakdown of national security has been lackadaisical at best. more..

To give impetus to Film Corporation International Film Unit inaugurated

Dec 29 (DN) "We should resolve to stand on our own feet by assimilating valuable features of the open economy. The new International Film Unit would give impetus for the Film Corporation to proceed on this path," said Cultural Affairs and National Heritage Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena more..

Record entries for international elephant Polo tournament

Dec 29 (TDN) While it may never rival cricket as the Sri Lanka`s top sport, elephant polo is fast becoming an important event on Sri Lanka`s annual sporting calendar. This year’s event, the fifth Annual International Elephant Polo Tournament to be held in the southern historic city of Galle in January next year, has attracted a record number of teams from around the world. more..

CHRONOLOGY- Assassinations during Sri Lanka's civil conflict

Dec 29 (Reuters) Troops stepped up security in Sri Lanka's restive east on Thursday for the funeral of a pro-rebel member of parliament gunned down at a Christmas mass, as a string of attacks stoked fears of a return to civil war. Here is a chronology of assassinations of major political figures since the outbreak of Sri Lanka's civil war in the 1980s: more..

Lanka peace talks may begin in early January

Dec 29 (HT) Talks between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE on the implementation of the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) are likely to begin in early January, informed sources here told Hindustan Times. more..

Choose any venue for Lankan talks: Norway

Dec 29 (HT) Norway, which is the official facilitator of the Sri Lankan peace process, has said that it has no objection to any venue for talks between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE. Talks on the implementation of the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) are being held up because the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE have not been able to agree on a venue. more..

Sri Lanka troops kill two attackers, mine recovered

Dec 29 (AFP) Government troops shot dead two suspected Tamil Tiger rebels as they lobbed grenades at soldiers in the restive northern peninsula of Jaffna, military officials said. The two men were killed at Kadduwan near the town of Jaffna, 400 kilometres (250 miles) north of here on Wednesday evening, officials said adding that the men had thrown two grenades, which did not cause casualties among the troops. more..

Yahoo Photos

Dec 29 (Reuters) Sugunan Pararajasingam (C), wife of slain pro-rebel politician Joseph Pararajasingam, cries next to the coffin of her husband in Batticaloa, eastern Sri Lanka, December 29, 2005. more..

Wider Significance of the Incidents in Pesalai

Dec 29 (UTHR) While preparing this briefing we received news of the tragic and senseless killing of the Hon. Joseph Pararajasingham, MP for Batticaloa, soon after he received communion with his wife at Christmas mid-night mass. Christmas eve was also the birthday of his wife Sugunam, who sustained injuries. more..

Maruthamunai: a tsunami-devastated village in Sri Lanka

Dec 29 (wsws) Last week a WSWS reporting team visited Maruthamunai, one of the villages in Sri Lanka most affected by the tsunami last December. It is situated in the Amparai district, about 260 kilometres from Colombo in the war-ravaged eastern province. more..

Deadly mines found by troops in northern Sri Lanka

Dec 29 (Xinhua) Sri Lankan troops on Thursday found deadly claymore mines which have caused the death of 40 soldiers since the beginning of this month. Defense officials in the capital Colombo said that three claymore mines were found in the northern town of Mannar, 312 km from here at two separate locations. more..

Fear and blame at funeral of slain MP

Dec 29 (Reuters) As the white-clad body of a slain pro-rebel politician lay in a hall in eastern Sri Lanka on Thursday, mourners blamed the government and international monitors warned that the country may be sliding back into civil war. The government blames Tamil Tiger rebels for a string of attacks on soldiers that have stretched a 2002 truce to breaking point. more..

War may not be far away in Sri Lanka: truce monitors

Dec 29 (AFP) The Norwegian-led truce monitoring mission has demanded an immediate end to the latest wave of bloodshed in Sri Lanka and warned that war "may not be far away". The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) said they themselves were under threat and were unable to operate in an insecure environment. more..

A future built on youth

Dec 30 (ND) As Dula Amarasinghe watched television images of children whose parents were carried away by the sea, thoughts turned to an old tea plantation his family owned in his native Sri Lanka. Could the abandoned hillside covered by tropical forest give the children a home, and hope? more..

SEP to commemorate anniversary of Keerthi Balasuriya’s death

Dec 30 (wsws) The Socialist Equality Party (SEP) in Sri Lanka will hold a public lecture to commemorate the eighteenth anniversary of the death of Keerthi Balasuriya, the founding general secretary of the Revolutionary Communist League (RCL), the SEP’s forerunner. more..

Jaffna Catholic hierarchy mourns the death of Pararajasingham

Dec 30 (TN) The Bishop of Jaffna and the priests belonging to the diocese mourned the loss of Joseph Pararajasingham and said the act was unjustifiable and unacceptable to men of good-will. "Perpetrators of this inhuman act will, one day, stand trial in the presence of the creator," Bishop of Jaffna Thomas Soundaranaygam said in his message. more..

STF soldiers fire into LTTE held area in East

Dec 30 (TN) Around fifty soldiers of the Sri Lanka Special Task Force (STF) Thursday morning around 11:00 a.m. opened fire at random into paddy fields located inside the LTTE held area, dispersing more than a hundred farmers working in the fields. Only minor injuries were sustained by a few farmers in the gunfire, more..

HALO Trust vehicle fleet ordered moved inside HSZ

Dec 30 (TN) Government has ordered all vehicles belonging to HALO Trust, an NGO involved in demining operations in Jaffna, to be moved inside the High Security Zone (HSZ), said a media release issued by HALO Trust in Jaffna Thursday. The release added that the Halo Trust's demining activities would be halted until further notice. more..

India crush Sri Lanka in women's Asia Cup cricket tournament

Dec 30 (AFP) India's women cricketers began their Asia Cup defence convincingly, defeating Sri Lanka by ten wickets at the Gymkhana ground. India, who beat Sri Lanka in the two-nation first Asia Cup in 2003, raced to 118-0 in 27.3 overs after bundling their opponents out for a meager 115 in 48.5 overs. more..

Sonia calls on Lankan Prez over peace process

Dec 30 (PTI) UPA Chairperson and Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Thursday called on the visiting Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse who is understood to have briefed her on the ongoing efforts to restart the peace process with the LTTE. more..

Peace Group calls for early resumption of talks

Dec 30 (TN) The National Anti-War Front (NAWF), in a statement issued in Colombo Thursday, called upon the Government of Sri Lanka to invite the Norwegian facilitators immediately to resume negotiations with the LTTE. NAWF also urged the militaries on both sides to meet with the assistance of the SLMM, to explore ways to stop the violence. more..

Sri Lanka to step up drive to woo wealthy Indian tourists

Dec 30 (PTI) Sri Lanka will launch a campaign next year to woo Indian tourists to spend their summer vacation in the country, as the tropical island struggles to fill up hotel rooms that remain largely empty following the tsunami disaster. more..

Mahinda meets corporate leaders

Dec 30 (BBC) On the second day of his state visit to India, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse met business and government leaders in Delhi on Thursday,the 29th. He started off his day with a meeting of thirty corporate leaders. more..

Solheim to Colombo

Dec 30 (BBC) In the wake of truce monitors warning that war may not be far away, Norway has announced that its Minster of International Development will be visiting Sri Lanka in a bid to salvage the peace process. A statement from Oslo on Thursday by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that Erik Solheim will travel to Sri Lanka to explore how the process can be moved forward. more..

Tamil passions build up over Sri Lanka

Dec 30 (IANS) Passions are again running high in Tamil Nadu over Sri Lanka, with leading political parties opposing a visit - now cancelled - to the state by President Mahinda Rajapakse. Tamil Nadu parties, including members of the ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA), are unhappy with Rajapakse's policies towards the country's as the LTTE. more..

Jayalalithaa’s no to President Rajapakse flusters Delhi

Dec 30 (DNA) It’s a major embarrassment for the government that visiting Sri Lankan President Mahindra Rajapakse had to cancel his scheduled visit to Chennai following chief minister Jayalalithaa’s last minute decision not to receive the Sinhala leader. more..

Yahoo Photos

Dec 30 (AFP) A government soldier patrols the waterfront as part of stepped up security in the capital, Colombo. Norwegian-led truce monitors have warned that war 'may not be far away' in Sri Lanka more..

Erik Solheim to try his hand on peace

Dec 30 (AT) Government of Norway in a bid to salvage the fragile peace process has announced that its Minster of International Development will be visiting Sri Lanka from 23 to 26 January 2006, to explore the peace process to move it forward. more..

Russian business delegation meets local businessmen

Dec 30 (AT) A ten member delegation, representing six Russian companies, was in Sri Lanka recently at the invitation of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and the Sri Lanka Russian Business Council to meet local business organizations, the Board of Investemnt said. more..