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New heart ailment - Uva province

Feb 27 (SLBC) The Health Ministry says tests carried out so far have not confirmed that a new heart ailment found in the Uva province was spread by either a virus or bacteria. Apart of the government the private sector has also conducted tests in to the spread of the disease. more..

Indian trawlers fishing in Sri Lankan water observed

Feb 27 (SLA) Naval troops on duty in the general area north of TALAIMANNAR have observed approximately 100 Indian fishing trawlers poaching inside Sri Lankan waters on 26 February 2005 around 8.00 p.m.

Shing Kwan and Bank of Ceylon launch Lanka’s biggest real estate dev't

Feb 27 (ANN) The country’s biggest property development project takes off on the former Wellawatte Spinning and Weaving Mills site today when construction of Havelock City gets off the ground with piling work commencing at the auspicious time of 10.20 am. more..

ADB approves seven million dollar loan for tsunami aid in Sri Lanka

Feb 27 (AFP) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) said it had shifted seven million dollars from a rural finance loan towards aid for tsunami-affected communities in Sri Lanka. The funds, originally part of a rural finance development project approved in 2003, will instead be lent out in microcredit loans more..

Kadirgamar hopes people of S Asia will drive SAARC forward

Feb 27 (PTI) Apparently unsatisfied with the achievements of SAARC, Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar today expressed hope that increased contacts among people of the member countries would "drive" the regional grouping forward. more..

Sri Lanka govt, LTTE close to agreement on

Feb 27 (Xinhua) The Sri Lankan government and the rebels are close to an agreement on a mechanism to coordinate post-tsunami relief and reconstruction in the north-east, the Sunday Observer reported on Sunday. "The two parties have almost agreed on the mechanism, except onthree or four issues," more..

Doctors strike over payment of salaries

Feb 27 (SAMN) The Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) last Friday resorted to abrupt trade union action at the Colombo National Hospital in protest against the Health Ministry’s decision to pay salaries of doctors from the ministry instead of the institution itself. more..

CWC says govt failed on 14 points

Feb 27 (SAMN) The Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) said yesterday that the government's failure to implement its 14 point programme led to the resignation of Estate Infrastructure Minister Muttu Sivalingam and his Deputy M. S. Sellasamy. more..

Ireland has pledged to provide five hundred boats to fishermen

Feb 27 (SLBC) The government of Ireland has pledged to provide five hundred boats to fishermen. The Sri Lanka Ireland Trust Fund has allocated 250 million rupees for this purpose. A boat out of hundred boats allocated to Hambantota district was handed over to the Prime Minister at a function held at the Temple Trees yesterday. more..

India, Sri Lanka agree on defence cooperation

Feb 27 (PTI) India and Sri Lanka would soon sign an agreement for defence cooperation, Foreign Minister of Sri Lanka Lakshman Kadirgamar said on Saturday. "At any moment now an agreement may be signed," Kadirgamar, who met Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Friday, told reporters. more..

Another first from JHU

Feb 27 (SN) The JHU was the first to commence building houses for the Tsunami victims. The forth of the series is to inaugurate today at Hambantothota. The set of houses was completed at Sagara Mawatha, Panadura and is to be handed over to the victims at 4.00P.M before a representative gathering at a simple Buddhist ceremony on 27th Feb.2005. more..

Wanni Tigers order eastern villagers to decline JVP assistance

Feb 27 (LT) The Relief Services Force of the JVP has withdrawn from the Periyakallaru area of the east. The JVP’s Colombo district Provincial Councillor Kanchana Pieris with his group of relief workers have arrived in the area to build temporary shelter for those who have been displaced by the tsunami. more..

Grenade explosion injures seven soldiers in eastern Sri Lanka

Feb 27 (AP) Seven soldiers were injured when an old grenade accidentally exploded during a training session in eastern Sri Lanka, the military said Sunday. The explosion took place at an army garrison in Trincomalee, 230 kilometers (140 miles) northeast of Colombo on Saturday, said Brig. Daya Ratnayake, military spokesman.

Sri Lanka told not to count on money pledged for tsunami reconstruction

Feb 27 (AFP) Sri Lanka should not count on aid promised by countries and international lenders after the December tsunamis until the money actually arrives, a senior reconstruction official says. The central bank has said it expects more than 500 million dollars in aid more..

CNO data was privy to public - Dr. Tara de Mel

Feb 27 (SO) Former chief of the Centre for National Operations, (CNO) Dr. Tara de Mel, said that a report published in a English daily yesterday on CNO was misleading and incorrect. She told the Sunday Observer that the information collected was for public information and not secret. more..

Ministry of Defence grounds UN helicopter

Feb 27 (LNP) The Ministry of Defence has ordered the Air Force to ground the country`s only private helicopter after the owning company flew it with the United Nations logo and colours. The suspension of licence came after the Deccan Aviation Ltd, which operated this Bell Jetranger under licence had chartered it to the UN office in Colombo to be flown with UN colours and logo. more..

No bank loans for buffer zone businesses

Feb 27 (LNP) Thousands of tsunami victims who lived within the 100-metre buffer zone will not receive any financial help to re-build their businesses or industries because lending agencies will not accept their existing properties as collateral for loans. more..

"Confer Muslims their rightful respect, dignity and compensation," urges Rauff Hakeem

Feb 27 (LM) SLMC Leader Rauff Hakeem yesterday insisted that the thousands of Muslims who were evicted from the North due to the Tamil National struggle, should be conferred with their rightful respect, dignity, and due compensation should be paid to all these victims who are still housed in refugee camps more..

Tsunami death train stops tourists in their tracks

Feb 27 (Reuters) It has become one of Sri Lanka's hottest sightseeing spots but it is not the sort of place where Ned Fiacco would care to have his photograph taken. Like many visitors to this southern coastal village, Fiacco had mixed feelings about what he was doing surveying the remains of a train on which more than 1,000 people were swept to their death more..

SLA prevents deepening tsunami affected jetties in north

Feb 28 (TN) A conference has been summoned for Tuesday to settle the dispute between the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) and Vadamaradchchi fisheries societies over the deepening about twenty-one fisheries jetties affected from Thondamannaru in the Vadamaradchchi north to Munai point in Point Pedro coast affected by tsunami. more..

NE Governor affirms language rights

Feb 28 (TN) "I agree that every citizen of the country should be given the right to communicate with the government institutions in their mother tongue," said Mr.Tyronne Fernando, Governor of the North East Province at a discussion held with the members of the Trincomalee District Bar Association more..

India to reconstruct three tsunami hit hospitals

Feb 28 (TN) Indian Health Ministry officials led by Ms Bhavani Tyagarajan, Director General of Indian Health Service, Sunday morning visited Trincomalee general hospital and requested its Medical Superintendent Dr.Ms Gowshi Gnanagunalan to submit a concept paper on the reconstruction and development of the institution more..

US Church, TRO pay $10,000 taxes to clear water purifiers from Sri Lanka Customs

Feb 28 (TN) Five water purifiers donated by the Holy Redeemer Church in Baltimore Maryland, USA, to the people of NorthEast and addressed to Tamils Rehabilitation Organization (TRO)-Colombo were held by Colombo customs from 27 January due to officials demanding import taxes recently introduced by the Finance Ministry on relief supplies. more..

People's Bank leans on taxpayers to clean it's closet

Feb 28 (LBO) Government announced a third re-capitalization of People's Bank costing taxpayers a mammoth Rs.8 .5 billion. Currently, People's Bank is the only large bank not meeting Central Bank's minimum capital limits. more..

Protection of the Alliance with JVP is important -Anura

Feb 28 (LT) Minister of Tourism and Industrial promotion, Anura Bandaranayake says that the need of the hour is to protect the United People’s Freedom Alliance in unison with the JVP than to vie for the presidential candidature. more..

Tamil Army soldier shot at by tigers

Feb 28 (LT) Wanni tiger cadres shot at a house at Ayyankerni, Chenkaladi in Batticaloa on the 26th at about 11.25 p.m. The house belongs to a Tamil soldier in National Defense Brigade of the Army. The shooting had occurred when the soldier had come home on a holiday. more..

Charles visits Sri Lanka as tour starts to improve his public profile

Feb 28 (GU) Thousands of miles away from the fiasco of his wedding plans and question marks over the legality of his marriage, Prince Charles will step off a plane in Sri Lanka today to begin a two- week tour in an attempt to redeem his reputation. more..

No objections to talks say Mahanayakes

Feb 28 (BBC) Visiting Norwegian special peace envoy Erik Solheim met the topmost Buddhist leaders in Sri Lanka on Sunday. Malwatte and Asgiriya mahanayake theros told the Norwegian peace envoy that they have no objection to the Sri Lankan government restarting peace talks and approaching at a negotiated settlement. more..

Conflicting reports on LTTE’s stance of working with Govt.

Feb 28 (AT) Colombo’s Sunday newspapers had conflicting reports about the attitude of the LTTE working together with the government on an Interim Administration for areas under LTTE control. more..

Thondaman to meet president today

Feb 28 (AT) Arumugam Thondaman , the CWC leader, whose party pulled out of the UPFA government last week is scheduled to meet President Kumaratunga today. CWC Cabinet Minister Mutu Sivalingam and Deputy Minister M.S. Sellasamy resigned from office last week. more..

Fresh probe called against Kusumasiri Balapatabendi

Feb 28 (AT) Five UNP MPs have asked the Speaker W.J.M Lokubandara to recall Kusumasiri Balapatabendi, High Commissioner designate to Australia, before the Select Committee on High Posts. Balapatibendi, former Secretary to President Kumaratunga appeared before the Committee on February 8 more..

Disaster delays renewed talks: FM

Feb 28 (ANN) Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar says, the time is not right to resume long-stalled peace talks. But he stresses that the government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, or LTTE, must still cooperate. more..

WHO team to combat mystery disease

Feb 28 (SAMN) A special World Health Organisation (WHO) team is due here shortly to assist Sri Lankan specialists trying to combat a mystery illness which has hit the Badulla and Moneragala areas. more..

Private sector urged to invest in NE

Feb 28 (SAMN) The Chairman and Director General of the Peace Secretariat Dr. Jayantha Dhanapala on Friday urged the private sector to invest in the North and East (NE) and warned failure would perpetuate the seeds of the conflict. more..

Tigers robbing tsunami relief

Feb 28 (LNP) Distribution of tsunami relief aid in this region is dogged by a new dimension. The LTTE is robbing about two thirds of the relief supplies, brought here by various NGOs, residents of the area complained. more..

A professor from USF takes her games, puppets and crafts to Sri Lanka

Feb 28 (DDN) She knew what the children needed. Night after night, she saw their faces on TV. Morning after morning, in newspaper photos, she stared into their dark eyes. Because of the tsunami, more than 3,000 children in Sri Lanka are orphans. more..

Yahoo Photos

Feb 28 (Yahoo) Sri Lankan children look at wrecked coaches of a tsunami-hit train in Peraliya, southern Sri Lanka, February 27, 2005. more..

Call to set up modern forensic services

Feb 28 (SAMN) The setting up of modern forensic services should be given 'top priority' as it would provide DNA evidence which would ensure justice in criminal cases, Deputy Solicitor General Palitha Fernando said Sunday. more..

Second model village opened in Amparai

Feb 28 (TN) A second model village in Kavadapaddi, a village located in Aalaiyadivembu Division, Amparai district, containing 51 houses, a preschool, a small health office and amenities for establishing small scale businesses was ceremonially opened Saturday more..

Canadian Tamils provide education support to Trinco villages

Feb 28 (TN) Socio-Economic Development Organization of Trincomalee (SEDOT) with financial help from Trincomalee Welfare Association (TWA) in Canada has embarked on a scheme to assist students and teachers in resettled Tamil villages of Thiriyai, Nochchikulam and Adambodai in the Trincomalee district more..

Dinghy with suspects handed over to Police

Feb 28 (SLA) Naval troops on suspicion had arrested a dinghy with three persons from the general area of TALAIMANNAR on 26 February 2005 around 6.15 p.m. Later all those suspects and their belongings, including one Out Board Motor (OBM) , were handed over to the Police for further investigations. more..

Hundreds of Indian fishing trawlers sighted

Feb 28 (SLA) Naval troops on duty in the general areas of TALAIMANNAR, DELFT Island and NAGARKOVIL in JAFFNA during 26th and 27th February 2005 have observed a total of about 340 Indian fishing trawlers, engaged in poaching within Sri Lankan waters between 7.30 p.m. and 5.00 a.m. on both days.

UN resolutions ignored and LTTE child conscription continues

Feb 28 (SLA) Barely a couple of hours after the UN Security Council called on the LTTE to renounce its continued conscription of children as LTTE soldiers, an irate mother of a seventeen-year old Tamil girl has assisted troops at the MUHAMALAI Entry/Exit point in order to rescue her child from LTTE grips more..

Sri Lanka Dec Exports $513 Million, +4% On Year

Feb 28 (DJ) Sri Lanka's export earnings improved 4% on year in December, but the island's trade deficit widened sharply, mainly because of an increase in international petroleum prices, central bank data released Monday show. more..

"Hundreds of brand new boats gifted to Southern tsunami victims but none to us," N/E Fishermen

Feb 28 (LM) Muslims and other minority communities living in the North and East of Sri Lanka have once again expressed their fears that they will not receive any considerable amount of relief from the Government, despite them being the worst tsunami affected. more..

JHU opens the first housing complex for Tsunami victims

Feb 28 (SN) The JHU was the first to construct houses for the Tsunami Victims, they obtain funds from Taiwan and Singapore. The Bodiraja Foundation of Singapore received the Funds. The JHU helped to manage the projects of new housing for the Bodiraja Foundation. There are five projects under way. more..

Those who breach the agreement must leave the People’s Alliance -JVP

Feb 28 (LT) “No one can ask the JVP to leave the UPFA but those who breach the alliance agreement can leave it” Sunil Handunnetti the deputy minister of Small and Rural Industries said. He said this at a rally at Maharagama on the occasion of electing the JVP election committee of Maharagama. more..

Gulf Air to stop operation

Feb 28 (TP) While airlines in the Middle East are looking at increasing frequencies to Colombo and back, Gulf Air, probably the oldest Middle East airline to fly to Sri Lanka, is set to pull out of Sri Lanka next month due to a drop in incoming passenger loads from Abu Dhabi, airline industry sources said. more..

Whither from here?

Feb 28 (ANN) The predicament of the UPFA government reminds one of Greek mythology. The choice it has between negotiating an interim administration with the LTTE under pressure from the international community and breaking ranks, as a result, with the JVP, more..

Lanka regrets burying tsunami dead

Feb 28 (SAMN) Local forensic scientists lamented Sunday that Sri Lanka was paying the price for hastily disposing tsunami dead in mass graves without identification, as a strong possibility exists that several such mass graves would be exhumed in the near future to search for missing foreigners due to pressure from foreign governments. more..