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Commandos speak of 'harassment' in training

Feb 21 (BBC) Seventeen commandos of the Sri Lankan Army (SLA) were admitted to the Anuradhapura General Hospital on Sunday for poisoning. Medical Officer of the Anuradhapura General Hospital Dr. Laxman Gamlath said 16 of them are recovering while one soldier is still in intensive care. more..

Disquiet over Sri Lanka town plan

Feb 21 (BBC) It is a slow process, fixing the damage on the boats. Here in Hambantota, they are lined up at a makeshift yard where houses once stood. This is a Muslim community, and for generations has relied on fishing to earn a living. more..

Warnings from weather experts

Feb 21 (TP) Sri Lanka could experience more extreme weather conditions such as ‘cyclones, tornadoes and lightning’, according to weather experts who appeared before a parliamentary panel studying the tsunami. more..

North Central post big win

Feb 21 (CI) Avishka Gunawardene's massive 209 in the first innings did enough to take his side to a comfortable 10-wicket win against Western Province at the Sinhalese Sports Club Grounds in Colombo. A second-innings 119 from Ian Daniel delayed the inevitable, pushing Western Province on to 386. more..

2668 CFA violations by LTTE: SLMM

Feb 21 (SAMN) The Scandinavian truce monitors have admitted that the LTTE has violated the ceasefire agreement 2668 times during the past three years. This includes LTTE not allowing the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission of its free movement 14 times, security sources said. more..

More job opportunities for the disabled

Feb 21 (SAMN) Legislation is being prepared to provide at least 3 % of the job opportunities in public, private and corporate sectors to disabled persons, Labour Relations Minister Athauda Seneviratne said Sunday. more..

Housing grant for tsunami victims

Feb 21 (SAMN) The Government will immediately grant Rs. 250,000 each to those who had lost houses in the December 26 tsunami disaster. This housing reconstruction grant will be paid from this week itself, Treasury Secretary Dr. P. B. Jayasundera told the Daily News Sunday. more..

Hot air over JVP action

Feb 21 (SAMN) Controversy surrounds the recent removal of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Secretary N. Bambarawanage. Well informed sources said that Bambarawanage, a senior SLAS officer, had been directed to the public administration pool but has so far not reported there. more..

Foreign investment flow continues - BOI

Feb 21 (LNP) Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) continue to flow to Sri Lanka with last year clocking a record US$ 234 million, up by 11% over 2003. BOI said the record figure was a reflection of international investor confidence in the Sri Lankan economy. more..

Railway strike today and tomorrow

Feb 21 (LNP) Railway services are likely to be affected today and tomorrow due to a strike action launched by railway driving assistants, shunting drivers, technologists, point men, signallers, shunting assistants and technical assistants. more..

Clinton, Bush to tour Sri Lanka's nightmare coast

Feb 21 (Reuters) Former U.S. presidents Bill Clinton and George Bush shifted the focus of their Asian tsunami fund-raising tour on Monday onto the psychological toll with a planned visit to a trauma-counselling centre in Sri Lanka. more..

Protest against Thaalvupaadu Police sexual assault

Feb 21 (TN) Hundreds of protestors carrying placards stood near Mannar courts Monday demanding stern action against a Sri Lanka Police constable accused of sexually assaulting and grievously wounding a schoolboy in Thaalvupaadu, a coastal village five kilometres from Mannar town. more..

SLA stops post-tsunami project on Jaffna coast

Feb 21 (TN) Sri Lanka army Monday stopped a ten million rupee project to clear Jaffna's Vadamaradchi coast of coral rocks ripped off the seabed by the Tsunami. Since the Tsunami hit Jaffna fishermen on this coast have been urging Sri Lankan government authorities and NGOs to help them remove the coral debris and make mooring points for their boats. more..

Rival LTTE gunfire kills one more LTTE cadre and injures another

Feb 21 (SLA) Gunfire of an LTTE rival member killed another LTTE cadre of the LTTE (KARUNA) faction and injured another LTTE man while they were in the general area of KARAPOLA in WELIKANDA on 20 February 2005 around 11.30 a.m. more..

Ex – EPDP member abducted and threatened with death

Feb 21 (SLA) An ex-member of the EPDP, who had been abducted by armed LTTE men on 19 February 2005 while he was at home in the general area of KIRAN, has been threatened with death by two LTTE men after the victim has managed to escape from LTTE detention and returned home. more..

LTTE men abduct one more youth

Feb 21 (SLA) Two LTTE cadres, identified as MANIYAN and SEIMON had abducted a 21-year old youth from the general area of KIRAN and taken him forcibly to un-cleared areas alleging that he would be reprimanded for helping LTTE KARUNA faction. more..

SLT commissions new high capacity communication tower in Jaffna

Feb 21 (PRIU) Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) established a second link to Jaffna with the recent commissioning of its 2nd transmission tower in Jaffna , under its “Project Hope” for the North, launched in 2002. This was a landmark in SLT’s Northern Area Development Programme, by providing for two communication routes to Jaffna. more..

Tsunami survivors in Jaffna criticise government

Feb 21 (wsws) Nearly two months after the December 26 tsunami, people affected in the coastal areas of the Jaffna peninsula in northern Sri Lanka are angry about the lack of help from the government or other organisations. more..

Tsunami choked LTTE’s war-cry

Feb 21 (ANN) In the pre-Tsunami days of November and December 2004, we saw feverish propaganda activities on the part of the LTTE trying to prepare the captive Tamil population for war. more..

Temporary shelters are against Muslim Sharia law

Feb 21 (LM) Tsunami hit Muslim families are refusing to occupy the temporary huts provided to them by the authorities. The either eight feet by eight feet huts or 10 feet by 10 feet huts are proving to be an impediment against Muslim norms. more..

Politics Vs. Politricks

Feb 21 (LM) 50 days passed since Tsunami struck Sri Lanka and if a stock taking is taken of the deeds done by the Muslim Politicians and Leaders have done on behalf of their community, politically, it is pathetic to note that nothing significant has happenned so far. more..

Miguel Bermeo called to Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Feb 21 (LT) Foreign Ministry has called Miguel Bermeo, permanent representative of the UNO in Sri Lanka to the ministry today (21st). Mr. Luxman Kadirgamar has called him to the ministry to express Sri Lanka Government’s condemnation for the message of condolence sent by UNO Secretary General Koffy Annan on the murder of Kaushalyan, more..

Tamil Arasu Kachchi, Muslim Congress & JHU not at dinner to Bush and Clinton

Feb 21 (LT) The dinner arranged for the visiting former Presidents of the USA George W. Bush (Senior) and Bill Clinton was not attended by any member of Tamil Arasu Kachchi, Sri Lanka Muslim Congress and Jathike Hela Urumaya. more..

Three proposals to Bush & Clinton from Govt.

Feb 21 (LT) A high level discussion was held between the former USA Presidents George Bush ( Senior) and Bill Clinton who arrived in Sri Lanka at 4.00 p.m. and the President Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga in President’s House. The discussion started at 7.30 p.n. and continued for about an hour. more..

LTTE chief is dead: minister

Feb 21 (KT) Circumstantial evidence points to the fact that LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran is no more, a Sri Lankan minister has said. “Though there is no concrete evidence, all available information points to the fact that Prabhakaran’s hideout was ravaged by tsunami waves. It is highly improbable that he survived the disaster,” more..

'Amma' ready to be facilitator in LTTE-Govt talks in Lanka

Feb 21 (MO) Mata Amritanandamayi is ready to be a facilitator between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and the Sri Lankan government to end the ethnic conflict in the island nation, only if both the warring groups desire so. more..

Strike derails relaunch of Sri Lanka tsunami train

Feb 21 (Reuters) Somapala Guruge waited two months to board Sri Lanka’s first train service to the south since Asia’s tsunami tore up the tracks and killed thousands, but he had to hitch in a vegetable truck on Monday -- thanks to a strike. more..

Local taxes and dubious foreign aid tell on tsunami relief

Feb 21 (HT) Tsunami relief work in Sri Lanka is suffering for a number of reasons. Among them are the new taxes on relief material, the dubious ways of the international aid agencies, and the doubtful value of their work. more..

Two killed in courtroom blast in southern Sri Lanka

Feb 21 (AP) A hand grenade exploded Monday at a courtroom in southern Sri Lanka, killing at least two people and wounding about 35 others, police and a doctor said. A suspect awaiting trial in a cell at the Magistrate's Court in Embilipitiya town hurled the grenade, more..

Former U.S. presidents tour American-funded projects in tsunami-hit areas of Sri Lanka

Feb 21 (AP) Former U.S. Presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush were inspecting American contributions to Sri Lanka's tsunami recovery Monday with a tour of U.S.-funded housing and a trauma counseling center on the southern coast. more..

Three killed in Sri Lanka blast as Bush and Clinton tour

Feb 21 (AFP) Three people were killed and 38 injured in a blast at a courthouse in southern Sri Lanka, police said, as former US presidents George Bush and Bill Clinton toured the region. Police said they suspected that a remand prisoner may have lobbed a grenade inside the courthouse more..

Fast-paced revival in Matara

Feb 21 (DN) Reconstruction activities are being expedited in the tsunami-hit Matara district. The committee on the Matara City Renewal Action Program (McRAP) recently reported the progress of its work to Ports and Aviation Minister Mangala Samaraweera. more..

Former US presidents end tour of Sri Lanka's tsunami-hit coastline

Feb 21 (AFP) Ex US presidents Bill Clinton and George Bush have ended a tour of Sri Lanka's tsunami-hit coastlands with a warning that international aid money would dry up unless there was a proper accounting of funds. more..

Clinton, Bush face Sri Lanka's Tsunami trauma

Feb 21 (Reuters) Sri Lankan children traumatized by Asia's tsunami gave former U.S. presidents Bill Clinton and George Bush harrowing crayon drawings of the dead and drowning on Monday as they toured the island's south to raise funds back home. more..

Mannar Court orders release of Indian trawlers

Feb 21 (TN) Mannar Magistrate Mr.N.M.M.Abdullah Monday ordered the release of seven Indian trawlers seized by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) last year when poaching in the territorial waters of Sri Lanka on an application made by the South Indian Fisheries Federation (SIFF). more..

Sri Lanka to amend laws to help tsunami victims

Feb 21 (AP) The government began to amend existing laws Monday to speed up the issuance of death certificates for people lost in the Dec. 26 tsunami and to help more children orphaned by the disaster find adoptive parents, the justice minister said. more..

Over 20 prisoners escape in Sri Lankan court explosion

Feb 21 (Xinhua) At least 24 prisoners escaped in the court house explosion which killed three and injured around 50in southeastern Sri Lanka on Monday, officials said. The court house at Embilipitiya, over 160 kilometer from capital Colombo, was rocked by a bomb explosion and gun fire at around 11:15 a.m. local time (0515 GMT). more..

TNA meets with German Minister

Feb 22 (TN) A delegation of the TNA met with German Economic Cooperation and Development Minister Ms. Eidamary Wievlorek- Luel at the Embassy of German Colombo, today Monday, political sources in Colombo said. more..

Clinton expresses hope on joint mechanism for Tsunami reconstruction

Feb 22 (TN) Expressing hope on a joint mechanism for reconstruction of Sri Lanka's tsunami-shattered coastal areas, US ex-president Bill Clinton Monday said that he was informed Sunday night that the LTTE and the Sri Lanka Government were working together to create such a mechanism for tsunami relief. more..

Sri Lanka buys 12,000 tonnes Indian corn

Feb 22 (Reuters) Sri Lanka has bought about 12,000 tonnes of Indian corn for March shipment but more deals are unlikely to materialise soon because of rising domestic prices in the South Asian exporter, traders said yesterday. more..

G7 debt moratorium to help Sri Lanka's balance of payments

Feb 22 (Xinhua) A proposed debt moratorium on Sri Lanka's post tsunami reconstruction would help in the island nation's balance of payments, Finance Minister Sarath Amunugama said Monday. more..

CEB battles a dry spell that is squeezing its available hydro reserves

Feb 22 (LBO) One room to control it all, the System Control Division at the Ceylon Electricity Board is on thin margins, as it battles a dry spell that dictates which plants it can run and when. more..

Sri Lankan ceasefire fragile

Feb 22 (Hindu) As Sri Lanka's longest spell of non-fighting enters its third year on the midnight of February 23, the LTTE has committed 2,636 violations of the ceasefire agreement compared to 115 violations by the Sri Lankan Government between February 2002 and December 2004. more..

Lalith Rajapakse acquitted; govt must file charges against the police for fabrication of cases

Feb 22 (AT) The Hong Kong based Asian Human Rights Commission has demanded the Attorney General and the Inspector General of Police in Sri Lanka to charge the three police officers responsible for filing false charges against Lalith Rajapakse under the same legal provisions. more..

Tsunami Special Provision Act to regulate death and adoption

Feb 22 (AT) Sri Lanka Government is expected to present a Tsunami Special Provision Act in Parliament soon whereby the presumption period of one year before declaring a person dead will be brought down to one month where Tsunami victims are concerned. more..

S.Pathmanathan’s appointment by World Bank to head Housing and Reconstruction Project opposed

Feb 22 (AT) The Society for Peace Unity and Human Rights in Sri Lanka (SPUR), an Australian based Sri Lankan’s peace organization has strongly protested to the appointment of S.Pathmanathan, a former Government Agent of Jaffna by the IDA/ World bank to head of the Housing and Reconstruction Project in the North and East. more..

Welcome the Yanks but...

Feb 22 (ANN) All Sri Lankans very warmly welcomed the two former American Presidents George Bush and Bill Clinton who were here in our hour of need. The two presidents saw for themselves the ravages caused by the biggest ever natural disaster in recent history. more..

Govt, Rebels argue as cease-fire enters fourth year

Feb 22 (Bloomberg) Sri Lanka's government and Tamil rebels, observing the third anniversary of a cease-fire in their two-decade civil war today, said the peace process is being threatened by wrangling over post-tsunami reconstruction efforts. more..

United nation’s representative in Sri Lanka strongly advised

Feb 22 (LT) Sri Lankan government yesterday (21) strongly advised Mr. Miguel Bermeo, the UNO representative in Sri Lanka. This strong advice was given as a result of UN secretary general sending a condolence message on the death of Kaushalyan, more..

Relief workers of JVP donate 40 houses for the Tsumani affected families

Feb 22 (LT) Forty houses built by the JVP relief services force were handed over to affected families in Kalutara. Wimal Weerawansa, the Parliamentary group leader of the JVP gave away the keys to tsunami affected families at Ethagama and Katukurunda. more..