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Plea to help rebuild Galle Stadium

Jan 4 (CI) An Australian businessman based in Sri Lanka has called on Australians to help rebuild Galle International Stadium which was devastated by last week's tsunami. Eight days after the disaster, the ground is almost entirely wrecked, with many of the stands gone and the playing area strewn with debris. more..

Sri Lankans thank New Zealand Cricket

Jan 4 (CI) Brendon Kuruppu, the Sri Lankan team manager, said he was deeply grateful to New Zealand Cricket and its officials for coming to their help at the hour of need. Aravinda de Silva, who is now vice-president of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), also thanked NZC for being considerate enough to understand Sri Lanka's situation more..

Will disaster stir Sri Lanka peace?

Jan 4 (BBC) It is notable that the two worst hit areas in the tsunami disaster - Sri Lanka and the Indonesian island of Sumatra - have been suffering civil conflicts. Some are now asking whether this tragedy will bring warring parties closer to a settlement. more..

Wave cuts off war-ravaged town's revival

Jan 4 (UT) The coming new year held promise for the Tamils of this remote fishing town on the northeastern coast of Sri Lanka. People who had fled Sri Lanka during a two-decade civil war were finally returning from refugee camps in India, three years after Tamil rebels and the central government signed a cease-fire. more..

Looters with loaded trucks arrested in tsunami-devastated Sri Lanka

Jan 4 (AP) Looters with loaded trucks carrying refrigerators, washing machines and furniture have been arrested in tsunami-stricken Sri Lanka, police said Monday. "Villagers are plundering whatever they can get hold of," said M.K. Sugadadasa, a senior police officer in the devastated south. more..

Kohl survives tsunami, stays to help Sri Lankans

Jan 4 (DPA) After surviving Asia's killer tsunami, Helmut Kohl, 74, the former German chancellor, has vowed to stay on in Sri Lanka to help organise relief for children and to demonstrate that the country needed tourist earnings. more..

Sri Lanka's southern Catholics celebrate return of statue

Jan 4 (AFP) Sri Lankan Catholics in the southern town of Matara have celebrated the return of a statue that disappeared during the Asian tsunami disaster only to be found days later unscathed. Around 100 Catholics held mass on Sunday at the Our Lady of Matara Shrine, more..

Foreign troops in Sri Lanka only for relief work: govt

Jan 4 (WI) Sri Lanka has clarified that foreign troops scheduled to arrive in the island nation were only coming to help in relief work in tsunami-ravaged areas and not for "military operations". Presidential spokesman Harim Peiris said the foreign troops "will engage only in humanitarian activities", more..

Yahoo Photos

Jan 4 (Yahoo) A young girl holds a loaf of bread at a camp for displaced people in Kaluwella near the southwestern coastal town of Galle. A large-scale relief operation was underway in this eastern coastal region of Sri Lanka more..

Canada to send disaster response team to Sri Lanka for tsunami relief

Jan 4 (CP) Canada will send its Disaster Assistance Response Team to Sri Lanka on Thursday to join the huge international tsunami relief effort. The announcement Monday came a week after a killer wave swept across the Indian Ocean killing upward of 140,000 people in several countries. more..

Medical clinics for Tsunami victims in NE to be streamlined

Jan 4 (TN) Medical teams visiting from other parts of the country, and conducting medical clinics for very short time in refugee camps in the Tsunami affected coastal areas in the Northeast province is causing problems for the health authorities, medical sources said. more..

NLF decries induction of foreign troops

Jan 4 (TN) The New Left Front (NLF), a vocal leftist group, in statement signed by the group's leader Dr. Vickramabahu Karunarathne and issued in Colombo Monday, condemned the induction of foreign troops into Sri Lanka in the guise of helping the tsunami victims. more..

Threat of environmental hazard from debris

Jan 4 (BBC) Tangalle has already started removing rubble and debris using earth moving machines. Gnanasiri Koththigoda reporting for BBC Sandeshaya from Hambantota say that the dumping of the rubble on the bank of Tangalle dam may create an environmental hazard. more..

GOSL- LTTE row over relief

Jan 4 (BBC) President Chandrika Kumaratunga says the government has already sent about 2000 metric tonnes of food items to LTTE-held north. She said many other essential items also sent to north though other effected areas have received far less. more..

Relief ‘cheats’ arrested

Jan 4 (BBC) A graduate teacher with a load of relief supplies in his house has been arrested by police in Batticaloa. There were 50 sacks full of rice, dhal, sugar, milk food and medicine in his house at the time of arrest, Head Quarter Inspector, Batticaloa, Harischandra Bandara said. more..

President saddened by J N Dixit’s death

Jan 4 (AT) President Chandrika Kumaratunga was visibly shocked when she learnt of the untimely death of Jyotindra Nath Dixit who was considered one of her personal friends. President Chandrika Kumaratinga said: “I had the pleasure of knowing him for over 25 years. He was a valued personal friend.” more..

Tsunami unearths Sri Lankan dead

Jan 4 (Reuters) A solitary skull sits on the roadside, torn by tsunami waves from the rest of the skeleton that lies nearby, wrapped in dirty cloth in its gaping wooden coffin. All around, the jagged edges of smashed blue, green and yellow tombstones poke up from the sand, an unearthed burial site more..

US marines arrive to boost Sri Lanka relief

Jan 4 (AFP) US marines arrived in Sri Lanka to boost relief efforts as the island's tsunami death toll hit 30,196 as fears grew of an outbreak of disease and rape of survivors. The health ministry officials said four cases of diarrhoea were reported but they stepped up monitoring to prevent it spreading. more..

Local Volunteers Heading Out To Sri Lanka

Jan 4 (CBS) The Red Cross says the outpouring have been overwhelming and not just monetarily. Now, many locals are heading over to the region to help out in the relief efforts. Dr. Roshini Rajapaksa, a gastroenterologist at NYU Medical Center was in Colombo, Sri Lanka visiting family for the holidays when the devastating tsunamis struck land. more..

Dart to be Deployed to Ampara Sri Lanka

Jan 4 (CNW) The Minister of National Defence, Bill Graham, announced today that the Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) will be deployed to the Ampara region of Sri Lanka. The region, one of the most significantly impacted by the Tsunami, is located on the east coast of Sri Lanka approximately 300 kilometers from Colombo. more..

Norway’s TRO pied pipers in action

Jan 4 (AT) Norwegian lawyer and a former Amnesty International Council Member F. Rovik has expressed fears that the LTTE front - TRO (Tamil Rehabilitation Organization) - is pied piping a third generation of young Tamils into the wilderness. more..

Fiddling while Country lies in tatters

Jan 4 (AT) British Prime Minister Tony Blair has been under attack from the public and the press for continuing his holiday while Asia is reeling under the unprecedented impact of last week's tsunami. more..

Sri Lanka: New scheme to deliver relief supplies safely

Jan 4 (AT) President Chandrika Kumaratunga chaired a meeting of political party leaders on Monday morning. It was decided to device a method to streamline the distribution of relief supplies. more..

Donate liberally towards the relief efforts in the Northeast- CHC

Jan 4 (TN) The Centre for Health Care (CHC), an NGO based in Kilinochchi, said that sufficient professionals, needed by the organisation for the moment, have already arrived in Northeast. Sources at CHC told TamilNet that they have urged the International community to donate liberally towards the relief efforts. more..

Emirates supports airport emergency team operations in Sri Lanka

Jan 4 (AME) A multi-national, volunteer group of experts in airport cargo operations is playing a critical role in the flow of international aid to hundreds of thousands of tsunami victims in Sri Lanka, in possibly the largest emergency logistics operation ever mounted on the island. more..

Tempers begin to fray as thousands of tsunami victims queue for food

Jan 4 (AFP) A young woman cradling a baby on her hip and clutching a slip of paper in her hand glowers at a girl, also left hungry and homeless by the tsunami, shuffling next to her in the food queue. "I was standing here before you, how dare you push me out of the line?" she asks angrily. more..

Sri Lankan high commissioner praises Aust's generosity

Jan 4 (ABC) Sri Lanka's high commissioner to Australia has praised the generosity of the Australian public and the Federal Government but says more money will be needed to cope with the tsunami disaster. Major General Janaka Perera has just returned from Sri Lanka, where he has been helping coordinate the aid effort. more..

Lanka stars get a glimpse of island’s loss, heroism

Jan 4 (IE) Sri Lanka’s players back from their abandoned tour of New Zealand have told harrowing stories from the tsunami-devastated south-east coast, expressing shock at the way major towns such as Galle and Matara were battered by the tidal waves on Boxing Day. more..

‘Disaster may not bring LTTE to peace parleys’

Jan 4 (DH) Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Monday sounded sceptical of the LTTE coming forward to resume the stalled peace talks in the wake of the tsunami disaster though LTTE had been cooperating with the Government in reaching relief to the affected people. more..

Relatives in USA mourn family at home in Sri Lanka

Jan 4 (UT) The five Jayasuriya kids grew up in a poor fishing village on Sri Lanka's southern coast. Their father was a merchant, and they lived in the family's ancestral house next to the sea. "Our backyard was the Indian Ocean," says Mangala Jayasuriya, second-oldest of the siblings. more..

Sorge bio author among Sri Lanka dead

Jan 4 (Kyodo) Veteran British journalist Robert Whymant, author of a biography on Russian spy Richard Sorge, has been confirmed dead after being swallowed by tsunamis at a beach resort in Sri Lanka, the Press Association reported Sunday. more..

Tamil Tigers cooperate with government on aid

Jan 4 (GU) Faced with some of the worst destruction in Sri Lanka, the Tamil Tiger guerrillas who have been running an armed struggle for autonomy for more than 20 years find themselves facing a new battle. They have to house, feed, and comfort thousands of traumatised and homeless people who look to them for leadership after last week's tsunami. more..

Yahoo Photos

Jan 4 (Yahoo) Refugees cooked dinner in Maha temple in Battapola, Sri Lanka, on Monday. Five hundred tsunami survivors are living in the Buddhist temple. more..

Death and devastation in Sri Lanka "truly overwhelming"

Jan 4 (AFP) The death and devastation wrought by the tsunamis in Sri Lanka are "overwhelming", UNICEF chief Carol Bellamy said, adding that the most haunting sight of her two-day tour of ravaged area was of parents watching for the sea to bring back the bodies of their children. more..

Sri Lankan cricket star warns against tsunami graft

Jan 4 (Reuters) Sri Lankan cricket star Muttiah Muralitharan, an ambassador for the U.N.'s World Food Programme, has warned the government and donor community to guard against corruption and political favouritism as aid is distributed to victims of the Tsunami disaster. more..

France pledges longer-term aid for tsunami-hit children

Jan 4 (AFP) France is to organise longer-term medical help for families hit by the devastating December 26 tsunamis, its health minister said after visiting children in Sri Lanka injured in the disaster. more..

Just 18 km from Sri Lanka, but spared by tsunami

Jan 4 (Rediff) Dhanushkodi is at the eastern end of Rameswaram island. From there it is only 18 km to Thalaimannar in Sri Lanka. Fishermen say that there is a place in the ocean near Dhanushkodi from where you can see the lights from both India and Sri Lanka at night. more..

In Sri Lanka's Time of Agony, a Moment of Peace

Jan 4 (NYT) The Tidal Wave Task Force headquarters here is not much to look at, but what is happening inside is extraordinary. Inside a crumbling, bullet-riddled building in rebel territory in northern Sri Lanka, low-level representatives of the country's government and Tamil Tigers rebels more..

Top biz leaders in nation rebuilding task force

Jan 4 (PIS) Gets far reaching mandate leading to the creation of Authority for Rebuilding the Nation; two other apex task forces to handle rescue and relief; and logistics, law and order. President Chandrika Kumaratunga yesterday appointed three apex task forces more..

After tsunami: Linking peace building with reconstruction

Jan 4 (PIS) Reports of Sinhalese volunteers, from districts adjoining the North-East and elsewhere, streaming into the affected areas to give relief and succour to their Tamil and Muslim brethren is reflective of the sentiments in the south. more..

Humanity or inhumanity?

Jan 4 (ANN) Fond hopes expressed of mighty forces of nature having swept away petty political prejudices, clearing the way for unity amongst all communities, appear to have receded with the tidal waves. The LTTE has made no pretenses about it. more..

Five landmines defused but no further danger

Jan 4 (SAMN) Five unexploded land mines were found and defused just outside the Army camp in Kallady and there is no further danger to tsunami victims, the Ministry of Relief and Rehabilitation said Monday. more..

Economic damage less than feared

Jan 4 (SAMN) In an unprecedented show of unity, President Chandrika Kumaratunga, Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe, JVP leader Somawansa Amarasinghe and the leaders of practically all other parties shared the same stage last week and vowed to rebuild the Nation in the aftermath of the massive tsunami disaster. more..

Govt. assures ample rice stocks

Jan 4 (SAMN) Dismissing fears of a possible shortage of rice and other essential items, the government Monday assured there were adequate stocks in the state and private sectors to meet relief requirements. more..

Two prisoners shot dead as the tsunami hit Sri Lanka

Jan 4 (wsws) In the midst of the many tragic stories in Sri Lanka on December 26, the killing of two prisoners at Galle jail stands out as a demonstration of the ruthlessness of the state apparatus towards ordinary people. more..

Fued stalls Sri Lanka aid

Jan 4 (G&M) Angry feuding over the right to deliver aid is slowing relief efforts in Sri Lanka, a major focus of private and official Canadian efforts to help tens of thousands of people left homeless by last week's tsunami. more..

Yahoo Photos

Jan 4 (Yahoo) U.S. Air Force personnel rest after their arrival in Katunayeka International airport in Colombo Sri Lanka January 3, 2005. Eight days on, hungry and sick survivors of the Indian ocean tsunami were waiting for food and medicine more..

For Sri Lanka, a 'ground zero'

Jan 4 (CSM) A small train station along Sri Lanka's southern belly - a sun-drenched, palm-flanked stop called Telwatte - is becoming this country's psychological "ground zero." This is where the Dec. 26 tsunami wiped out a packed nine-car train and took most of its passengers, too. more..

World Leaders Arrive In Sri Lanka

Jan 4 (Bernama) Tsunami-hit Sri Lanka on Tuesday prepares to welcome the biggest number ever of foreign dignitaries including UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan as relief and rehabilitation operations continue with the US taking the lead in a marathon international relief initiative. more..

LTTE should handle relief operation in its territory - Ranil

Jan 4 (TN) Leader of the Main Opposition United National Front (UNF), Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe, has said that the Liberation Tigers should handle the tsunami relief operation in the LTTE-held areas as they were the ones who handled the immediate rescue operation in those areas. more..