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Japanese peace Envoy Akashi assures fair share for Muslims

Feb 12 (IL) Japan’s special peace envoy Yasushi Akashi addressing the media soon after his meeting with SLMC Leader Rauff Hakeem today morning said that his visit was intended to learn the Muslim community’s considerations, needs and their requirements since the tsunami tragedy. more..

Tamil Elam map on MP's name card

Feb 12 (LT) The map of so called Tamil Elam has been printed on one side of the name card of Jaffna district parliamentarian, K.Eelaventhan whose details are given in Tamil language. Alongside the map declared by the Tigers Organisation, are the name, address and the political party of the MP printed in Tamil. more..

UNO sustains Wanni tigers - PNM

Feb 12 (LT) Mr. Miguel Bermeo Permanent Representative of the UNO in Sri Lanka, and his staff are accused of supporting the separatist Wanni tiger organization to get the status of a separate state. more..

Lanka carrier to offer special fares

Feb 12 (FE) Sri Lankan Airlines would announce in a week’s time promotional fares and packages to encourage Indian travellers to fly to the island nation and beyond, according to the regional manager (Asia Pacific), Sri Lankan Airlines, M Fazeel. more..

Japan writes off debt repayments

Feb 12 (LT) Japan, having granted one third of the foreign aid to Sri Lanka, is the single country that has given the largest amount of foreign aid to Sri Lanka. The minister of finance, Sarath Amunugama and Secretory to the Ministry of Finance P.B. Jyasundara toured Japan recently and had discussions with the representatives of the Japanese government. more..

Private fund will directly benefit workers at Sri Lankan factory

Feb 12 (FE) The pictures of devastation left by the Indian Ocean tsunami have affected many of us, but for the staff at big enough clothing, the impact hit close to home. big enough clothing has built a reputation as a direct seller of high-quality children's clothing. more..

Pro-UNP big business ganging up against Chandrika

Feb 12 (AT) "If tsunami reconstruction and relief is unsatisfactory, we will have to intervene'', said Mahendra Amarasuriya, the controversial head of the J-Biz Sri Lanka Chambers of Commerce apex body here in Colombo. more..

Ratwatte tells court his life story

Feb 12 (SAMN) Former Deputy Defence Minister Anuruddha Ratwatte in his evidence before the Trial-at-Bar High Court Judges Sunil Rajapakse (President) and Deepali Wijesundera said that he had decided not to contest the General Elections in 2001 because of the unhealthy atmosphere that reigned. more..

60% of tsunami plan for LTTE area

Feb 12 (SAMN) Around sixty percent of a 1.8 billion-dollar tsunami reconstruction plan will target Tamil Tiger-controlled areas of Sri Lanka, Task Force for Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Chief Mano Tittawella was quoted as saying by the AFP news agency. more..

It costs to rebuild houses: Engineer

Feb 12 (SAMN) Rebuilding tsunami destroyed houses cost more than its original worth said Engineer Navin Gooneratne at the seminar for the presenting of plans for cost affective rebuilding of tsunami devastated houses Friday. more..

Govt. reveals details of relief distribution

Feb 12 (LNP) The delivery of four items of direct government tsunami relief package to affected families has shown an 80 percent progress up to February 7, according to the data received by the office of the Commissioner General of Essential Services (CGES) from the respective District Secretaries, Commissioner General of Essential Services said on Thursday. more..

Several important Cabinet decisions taken

Feb 12 (LNP) Cabinet Spokesman Minister Mangala Samaraweera yesterday announced several important Cabinet decisions taken during the Cabinet meeting presided over by President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Thursday. more..

Taking play therapy to Sri Lanka tsunami orphans

Feb 12 (JT) Dr. Akiko Ohnogi is a vision in red. She is wearing red from top to toe -- from earrings to handbag and shoes -- because, put simply, "It's my favorite color." Akiko has taken time off from a frantic schedule to talk about a trip to Sri Lanka to help relieve trauma among children affected by the tsunamis of Dec. 26. more..

Presidential poll on or before Nov. 2006

Feb 12 (SLBC) The Government yesterday announced it will hold the presidential election on or before November 12 next year, reiterating the President had no intention of postponing the poll as alleged by the Opposition. Cabinet spokesman Minister Mangala Samaraweera said it was not the custom of the UPFA or the President to delay elections. more..

Jaffna, Vavuniya shut down in hartal, protesters clash with SLA

Feb 12 (TN) The entire districts of Jaffna and Vavuniya Saturday came to a standstill following a general shut down, condemning the killings of Mr.Kousalyan, LTTE political head for Batticaloa Amparai district, his colleagues and Mr.Chandra Nehru, former TNA parliamentarian for Amparai district. more..

Kaushalyan killing, an attack on peace process: Govt.

Feb 12 (PIS) The government yesterday described the assassination of LTTE Eastern political leader, E. Kaushalyan as a clear violation of the cease-fire agreement signed between the government and the LTTE. more..

Murali's no chucker, says Warne

Feb 12 (CI) Australia's "sheikh of tweak", Shane Warne, has said that his main rival for the world Test-wicket record, Muttiah Muralitharan, does not throw. Warne said: "The most important thing is that he does not chuck. I think it is the way he bowls that had raised a few eyebrows." more..

60 irregular admissions to five national schools detected

Feb 12 (DN) The Presidential Investigation Unit appointed to probe the 2005 Grade I School Admissions to five National schools have detected 60 cases of irregular admissions and have recommended admission of 41 of the victimised children to schools for which they had sought admission. more..

Sri Lankan ceasefire "poisoned" by rebel killings: Japanese envoy

Feb 12 (AFP) Japan's special envoy to Sri Lanka, Yashushi Akashi, said that the killings this week of a senior rebel leader and his colleagues had "poisoned" the ceasefire in the island nation. more..

DNA tests done: The search for Baby 81's parents progresses

Feb 12 (AP) The long search for the parents of "Baby 81," an infant boy found in the debris of the tsunami in Sri Lanka, took a big step forward with the completion of DNA tests, while British forces in Indonesia packed their bags to leave Sunday as emergency relief efforts wind down. more..

Government must amend unitary constitution

Feb 12 (Gulf) A senior Tiger leader called for the amendment of Sri Lanka's unitary constitution to make room for Tamil aspirations in a more flexible federal structure. Asked to clarify their insistence on bringing the issue of an Interim Self Governing Authority to the peace table, S.P. Tamilselvan said the first impression that must be corrected is that the Oslo Declaration is an "agreement". more..

Sri Lanka's urban-rural divide challenges advertising in an increasingly digital world

Feb 12 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s urban-rural divide will dictate how companies target consumers in a future, increasingly digital world, local brand builders say. “Sri Lanka will have to form two distinct advertising strategies to reach local consumers,” more..

Annan’s proposed sanctions may not affect LTTE

Feb 12 (HT) UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's recommendation to the Security Council that sanctions should be imposed on organisations, which use child soldiers, may not be applied to the LTTE — at least at this point of time. Sources close to the LTTE admit that Annan's tough recommendations have given a jolt to it. more..

Grenade attack on Mannar LTTE political office, one dead

Feb 13 (TN) Two civilians and an LTTE political worker were wounded when unidentified persons lobbed a grenade at the Liberation Tigers' political office in Mannar town Saturday night around 7.45 PM. Mannar hospital sources said one civilian identified as M. Callister (32) who was admitted at the Mannar Hospital succumbed to wounds. more..

Youths burn SLA post, Police retaliate in Thenmaradchy

Feb 13 (TN) A Sri Lanka Army (SLA) post at Meesalai-Puttur junction in Thenmaradchchi was set alight by protesting youth provoked by SLA soldiers who attempted to remove roadblocks protesters setup as part of hartal. Police retaliated by ransacking a community center. more..

Ship begins medical work under SLN restrictions

Feb 13 (TN) Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) permitted the Greek Hospital ship to start providing medical services Saturday morning with conditions imposed on number of patients treated per day and mandatory use of a temporary shelter where patients are to be transported before batches of maximim six patients are taken inside the ship for treatment, more..

TNA MP commends the JVP

Feb 13 (LT) TNA parliamentarian, Raviraj participating in an interactive political program "Thulawa" on the ITN channel commended the JVP for the gracious act of the minister of Culture and National Heritage by visiting professor Sivathambi uninvited and uninformed to award him a medal in recognition of his worthy service to the Sri Lankan literature. more..

The Koushalyan Affair

Feb 13 (AT) He died the way he lived. Mr. Koushalyan, who was gunned down last week, was no unarmed democratic politician; he was a leading member of the political wing of an organisation whose politics is a synthesis of nihilism and annihilation. more..

20 Sri Lanka tsunami victim bodies found after 6 weeks

Feb 13 (Xinhua) Some 20 bodies of people who were killed in the Dec. 26 tsunami were discovered in southern Sri Lanka on Saturday, police said. Bodies which were found six weeks after the disaster were in a highly decomposed state, some of them reduced to skeletal remains. more..

EU gives duty-free access to apparels

Feb 13 (BT) Apparel from a series of Asian countries could be offered a reduction in EU and US tariffs after the tsunami devastated parts of Sri Lanka, Indonesia, India, Thailand and Maldives Islands at the end of last month. more..

Japanese envoy visits Sri Lanka's restive east in fresh attempt at restarting peace talks

Feb 13 (AP) A Japanese peace on envoy met on Saturday with Tamil Tiger leaders in rebel-held eastern Sri Lanka, where the recent deadly ambush of a top guerrilla commander has threatened to derail relief efforts and a three-year-long cease-fire. more..

TNF Demands the Resignation of the 22 Tamil MPs Backing Prabaharan

Feb 13 (AT) The Tamil National Force (TNF), which claimed responsibility for the assassination of Lt. Col. Eliyathamby Kousalyan, the Political Head of the LTTE in the east, has issued a press release demanding the resignation of the 22 Tamil MPs who made the loudest noises in Parliament on behalf of the slain Tamil Tiger. more..

Pirapaharan honours slain TNA MP

Feb 13 (TN) Leader of the Liberation Tigers, Mr. Velupillai Pirapaharan Saturday posthumously honoured Mr. Ariyanayagam Chandra Nehru as Maamanithar, the highest honour granted by the LTTE. The citation signed by the LTTE leader was given to Mr. Nehru's widow and son at a special ceremony in Pavattah, more..

The Sinking Fortunes of Prabaharan

Feb 13 (AT) On the eve of last Christmas Velupillai Prabhakaran was riding high on the crest of a wave of militarism, threatening to launch his Eelam War IV if the Sri Lankan government refused to negotiate on the Interim Self-Governing Administration (ISGA). more..

Janadasa Peiris – His vision on the role of the state media

Feb 13 (AT) Associated Newspapers Ceylon Ltd, better known as Lake House – its Chief Janadasa Peiris was frank, that the state media should be revamped. Structural changes have to take place. But it is no easy task. more..

JVP warns of tougher action

Feb 13 (SAMN) The JVP has resolved to take further measures if its controversial decision not to participate in last week’s two-day parliamentary debate on the tsunami fails to have the desired effort on the SLFP. more..

Anura faces party tsunami

Feb 13 (SAMN) The President has called for an explanation from Tourism Minister Anura Bandaranaike over his post-tsunami conduct. President Chandrika Kumaratunga, as party leader, in a confidential document has called Mr. Bandaranaike to explain his delay in returning to the country after the tsunami more..

Army posts attacked, shutters down

Feb 13 (SAMN) Tiger guerillas Saturday mounted attacks on sentry points, lowered the national flag to half mast amidst a hartal that forced the closure of business establishments and crippled transport services in the north. more..

Defy 100-meter ban, Ranil tells victims

Feb 13 (SAMN) Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday urged coastal residents to defy the Government’s 100-metre ban, calling it illegal and stating that it was rife with fundamental rights issues. more..

The Management Assistant service this month

Feb 13 (SLBC) The Management Assistant service will come into effect in the public sector from the 24th of this month. According to the Director of Pensions K A Thilakeratne, Clerical and Allied Grade employees who are unwilling to join the service could opt to retire by that date. more..

Power Troubles

Feb 13 (LBO) The AES Kelanitissa plant is back after a few days off the grid, after the government stepped in to defuse a crisis that was brewing with the Ceylon Electricity Board. The entire 163 MW plant was disconnected a few days ago after the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation cut off fuel supplies, more..

UNO office in Sri Lanka is a pro-tiger den

Feb 13 (LT) It has been revealed that the Colombo office of the UNO in Sri Lanka has come down to the state of an international agency to facilitate Wanni tiger organization. It is also reported that UNO Secretary General Koffy Annan issued the message of condolence on the death of Kaushalyan at the request of the heads of UNO office in Colombo. more..

PNM meets Kadirgamar

Feb 13 (LT) A special meeting between the leaders of Patriotic National Movement and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Laxman Kadirgamar was held yesterday at about 11.00 a.m. at the foreign minister’s official residence. The discussion had been held on a request made by the PNM. more..

Minister Nimal Siripala succour TRO

Feb 13 (LT) 45kg of anti venom toxin smuggled in as tsunami aid by Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO), a front organization of the Wanni tiger organization, and confiscated by the customs has been released to the smugglers on a directive by Minister Siripala de Silva. more..

Sri Lanka accuses NHS of luring away its medical staff

Feb 13 (GU) Sri Lanka - still recovering from the devastation of December's tsunami - has accused Britain of undermining its already embattled health service by failing to prevent hospitals luring away trained doctors and nurses to work in the UK. more..

No way to monitor tsunami rich

Feb 13 (SO) Millions of rupees raised by various organisations and individuals for tsunami victims were in danger of being siphoned-off due to the absence of regulations to monitor their financial operations, unless special regulations were introduced soon. more..

New SC judge wants justice in judicial appointments

Feb 13 (LNP) The newly appointed judge to the Supreme Court Saleem Marsoof PC emphasised that for the preservation of judicial independence, it was indispensable that there was transparency and fairness in the process of making appointments to, and promotions in, the judiciary. more..

LTTE helicopter request turned down

Feb 13 (LNP) Non-availability of helicopters forced the Government to turn down further flights requested by LTTE political wing leader S. P. Thamilselvan, now in the East. He had made a request to fly from an LTTE-held area in the Batticaloa district to the neighbouring Ampara district for the funeral of ex-TNA MP A. Chandra Nehru. more..

Italy lifts travel warning to Lanka

Feb 13 (TP) Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Tourism said the Italian government had advised the Italian tourism industry that Italian tourists could travel to Sri Lanka and an earlier advice urging restraint in travel no longer stands. more..

Bollywood to battle boredom in Lankan refugee camps

Feb 13 (HT) Bollywood films will soon be battling boredom, a major affliction in the hundreds of refugee camps in tsunami-hit Sri Lanka. Thanks to the efforts of the cultural departments of some major diplomatic missions in Colombo, thousands of refugees languishing in makeshift camps in southern and eastern Sri Lanka, will be seeing their favourite Bollywood and Mollywood movies. more..