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Two Sri Lankan soldiers attacked, weapons seized in Tamil-majority north

Nov 12 (AP) A land mine killed two timber workers in Sri Lanka on Saturday, a Web site reported, while officials said two motorcycle-borne assailants shot at two army soldiers and wounded one, then seized the soldiers' automatic rifles and fled. more..

Mannar court releases refugee returnees from TamilNadu

Nov 13 (TN) Mr.A.S.Johnthasan, Mannar acting Magistrate Saturday ordered surety bail for one person and released ten others when Talaimannar Police produced eleven refugees who were taken into custody by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) when they were returning to Sri Lanka from South India Friday, legal sources said. more..

CEB's operating losses balloon this year

Nov 13 (LBO) Operating losses at the Ceylon Electricity Board is threatening to snowball to Rs. 18 billion by year end, as costs of generation soar with no new power plants in sight. The state monopoly power utility has notched up a Rs. 13.5 bn operating loss for the first nine months this year, but that could exceed Rs. 18 bn by year end, more..

'6-1 is not a pretty sight' - Moody

Nov 13 (CI) Tom Moody was disappointed with Sri Lanka's overall performance in the series but was confident that they could bounce back pretty soon. He spoke to the media after the game. more..

Cricket: Failure of formula

Nov 13 (CI) There are two ways to look at it. Either this Sri Lankan side was over-estimated, despite being ranked No.2 when they landed here, or India simply made a fine side look ordinary. "I think they've only played as well as we've allowed them to play," said Greg Chappell when asked about Sri Lanka's plight in this series. more..

'Karuna fled with UNP support, because he feared the disciplinary action'

Nov 13 (AT) The latest editorial of Eelanatham, the official Tamil language daily of the LTTE published from Kilinochchi , has come down hard on Karuna, the breakaway rebel from the LTTE, and the UNP. The editorial refutes the UNP claim that it split the LTTE into Karuna and Prabhakaran camps. more..

UNP has virtually bagged victory – Tissa Attanayake, UNP Deputy Secretary

Nov 13 (AT) Just a few days ahead of the November 17 crucial Presidential polls, the main opposition - - United National Party - - vowed that they would win elections with a good chunk of 55-60% of votes in the country. On an upbeat note Deputy General Secretary, Tissa Attanayake, said more..

Chandrika’s speech at the SAARC summit – a swansong

Nov 13 (AT) In an emotion filled address at the 13the summit meeting of the South Asian Association for Regional Corporation (SAARC) held at the Bangladesh Capital Dhaka, Sri Lanka’s President Chandrika Kumaratunga, all most in her final appearance in an international events as the Head of State of Sri Lanka, more..

The Tiger Boycott: Reality or Myth?

Nov 13 (AT) Given the Tigers’ unblemished record of lies and deception I find it hard to comprehend why we still have this propensity to believe their given word. But somehow contrary to all available evidence most of us persist in thinking that the Tiger is a creature of its word; and that it does what it says and says what it does. more..

Be prepared -CBK at SAARC

Nov 13 (BBC) Presidient Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga stressed the importance of regional cooperation in disaster management to he counterparts, attending the 13th SAARC summit in Dhaka, Bangladesh. more..

India as Mediator

Nov 13 (TW) It appears that the JVP and Presidential candidate Mahinda Rajapakse want to invite India to come in as Mediator/Facilitator, to deal with Sri Lanka’s problem. The Sri Lanka Tamils are a part of this problem. more..

The Elusive Maddak Kalappu (Batticaloa)

Nov 13 (TW) Maddak Kalappu is the Thamil name for what is known as Batticaloa in English. And in Sinhala it is called Madakalappuwa. The Dutch that ruled the maritime provinces of Sri Lanka after defeating the Portuguese called the eastern capital town Batticaloa. more..

Sri Lanka back with a bang!

Nov 13 (DH) Corals are Hikkaduwa’s best friends. On the highway that serves this beach town, signboards announced hotels named Coral Gardens, Coral Rock, Coral Sands, Coral Reef Beach and, very ambitiously, Lanka Supercorals. We chose the charming little Amaya Reef Hotel next door. more..

Kumaratunga proposes initiatives for S Asian eco. integration

Nov 13 (WI) President Chandrika Kumaratunga today proposed fast-track initiatives on the South Asian economic integration, stating, "we can all draw significant benefits from such a framework." "We strongly believe that we should take bold steps to get maximum mutual benefits by synergizing our development efforts through a network of such initiatives," more..

Sri Lanka describes two years of SAARC under Pakistan’s leadership productive

Nov 13 (APP) Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumarantunga Saturday described two years of SAARC under Pakistan’s leadership as very productive, after meeting with Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz on the sidelines of the two-day Summit. more..

Mangala intervenes to settle JVP-Swaranawahini dispute

Nov 13 (LeN) Minister Mangala Samaraweera has intervened to change Swaranavahini television channel's decision not to give publicity to the JVP and not to allow its representatives to take part in its live discussions. more..

Maheswaran to resume attacks against Thonda after election

Nov 13 (WS) Maverick UNP Colombo District parliamentarian T.Maheswaran, who has been leveling various allegations against CWC leader Arumugam Thondaman, since his return to the UNP fold much to the chagrin of the party leadership, last night vowed to resume his attack after the presidential election. more..

'India is an excellent economic model for us to follow'

Nov 13 (WI) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse today said India is an excellent economic model for the island nation to follow and that it needs to export more to its immediate neighbour in order to achieve a balance of trade between the two countries. more..

Battered by tsunami and war, Sri Lanka vote is a referendum on a faltering peace process

Nov 13 (AP) Sri Lanka's year opened with the devastation of the Indian Ocean tsunami and is closing with a presidential election that highlights its deep divisions over how to end its 22-year civil war. more..

Have Tigers gone too far?

Nov 13 (BT) After hosting Sri Lanka’s Tamil Tiger guerrillas for over two decades, Europe has finally decided to show its displeasure with the world’s most lethal insurgent group over its adamant refusal to give up violence. more..

Colombo Museum's new look enhanced by Kandy Gallery

Nov 13 (ANN) A beautiful collection of historic artefacts from the post-Polonnaruwa, pre-Kandy and Kandy era are now on view at the Colombo National Museum after the galleries they were displayed in were given a facelift with assistance from HSBC. more..

Everybody's president

Nov 13 (ANN) By the time next Sunday (Nov 20) comes around we will have a new president. Whoever it be, we wish him well. As a writer on this page has pointed out, no sooner is the result declared, the winner who will take all unlike in the proportional representation system by which we elect our legislature, more..

There is no third alternative to national problem -G.L

Nov 13 (LeN) When finding a solution to the national problem, the United National Party will not consent to any program that would be detrimental to the country or damage its territorial integrity, party spokesman Professor G.L.Pieris stressed at a media briefing in Colombo yesterday (11). more..

Tamils to stage anti-LTTE rally in Brussels

Nov 13 (PIS) Tamils from several European countries are to stage an anti-LTTE rally in Brussels tomorrow urging the European Union to ban the Tamil Tiger organisation and take urgent steps to halt its fund raising. more..

LTTE intensifies fund raising in UK

Nov 13 (PIS) The LTTE has stepped up its fund raising activities in the United Kingdom, reliable sources said. "They are demanding more money from the Tamil community living in Britain saying that whoever wins the forthcoming Presidential Election, the LTTE is preparing an all-out attack against the Army and they need money to buy the arms", more..

War not a solution to NE conflict: Mahinda

Nov 13 (PIS) On the last lap of a gruelling and close presidential race, Prime Minister and UPFA candidate Mahinda Rajapakse told The Sunday Times he did not see war as a solution to the crisis in the north and east and he believed the humanitarian problems of the people there should be resolved amicably. more..

2002 ceasefire deal stopped the war: Ranil

Nov 13 (PIS) With a close race, if not a photo-finish, likely in the presidential election, UNP leader and candidate Ranil Wickremesinghe told The Sunday Times his main rival had failed to present a credible alternative to the federal solution proposed by the UNP. more..

Mega oil refinery project halted

Nov 13 (SAMN) Power and Energy Minister Susil Premjayanth Saturday confirmed that cabinet has placed on hold Sri Lanka’s largest foreign investment project at his request. "I have asked that the project be put on hold until I meet with representatives of trade unions and submit any observations they may have," more..

Govt failure to use aid a crime: Ranil

Nov 13 (SAMN) The failure of the UPFA government to utilize nearly five billion dollars worth of aid pledged to Sri Lanka following the Tokyo summit is a crime against the nation, UNP Presidential candidate Ranil Wickremesinghe said addressing huge rallies at Kiribathgoda, Dehiwala, Matale and Kurunegala Saturday. more..

Muslim Affairs portfolio for Fowzie?

Nov 13 (SAMN) Environmental and Natural Resources Minister A. H. M. Fowzie is expected to be sworn as the new Minister of Muslim Affairs by President Kumaratunga later this week, well informed governmental sources said Saturday. more..

Jaffna polling booths slashed

Nov 13 (LNP) Candidates contesting next Thursday`s presidential election have agreed to a pruning down of the number of polling stations in the northern Jaffna peninsula, Government Agent K. Ganesh said yesterday. more..

Sri Lanka`s highest national honour for Kadir

Nov 13 (LNP) Late Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar will be posthumously decorated with Sri Lanka`s highest national honour, the title of Sri Lankabhimanaya, at a BMICH investiture by President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Monday. more..

Two Sinhala films on British TV

Nov 13 (LNP) Two Sinhala films are being screened this month on British Terrestrial Television marking an important landmark for Sri Lankan cinema. Ira Madiyama (August Sun) was shown on Channel 4 on November 11 and Thani Tatuwen Piyabanna (Flying with One wing) will be aired on November 17. more..

Debate abandoned, Ranil retreats

Nov 13 (SO) The Sunday Observer reliably learns that Opposition Leader has failed to give his consent to hold the much talked about debate between him and rival Presidential candidate Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse. It was the Opposition leader who threw an open challenge to the Prime Minister to have debate with him. more..

Ranil promises Non-Contiguous Unit for Muslims

Nov 13 (LM) UNP Presidential candidate Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday declared that he would reconstruct all tsunami damaged houses within 365 days by appointing a competent authority for the purpose and pledged to expand and develop Kalmunai a model city like Kandy and Anuradhapura. more..

Presidential debate called off

Nov 13 (LM) The Presidential debate between Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse and opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe was called off yesterday after Rajapakse insisted that it should be confined only to two 20 minute statements each by the two candidates. more..

Marxist JVP claims its not opposed to private sector or foreign investors

Nov 13 (LBO) The JVP says it is changing fast and it no longer opposes the private sector or foreign investors. Top rungers in the UPFA at an evening meeting at Colombo Hilton said anti-business sentiments are blown up by the opposition to undermine the economic policies of Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksha. more..

UPFA goes to court against Tissa Attanayake’s statement

Nov 13 (LT) UPFA has made a complaint to the CID about a statement made by Mr. Tissa Attanayake that there could be a bomb explosion at an election rally of Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksha. MP Tissa Attanayake said that the UPFA may explode a bomb at one of their rallies to win the sympathy of the people. more..

A country is necessary for everything -Mahinda Rajapakse

Nov 13 (LT) Nothing could be done without a country; no one likes the country being divided or partitioned; the aspiration of everybody is for the Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims to live united in a unitary Sri Lanka said Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse, presidential candidate of the UPFA. more..

The UNP and SLFP must work together -Karu

Nov 13 (UNP) UNP’s Prime Ministerial candidate and Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya is confident as any other member of the party that it is Ranil Wickremesinghe who will win the November 17 election. He says the country does not only deserve a good leader but also a manager who could bring about economic prosperity. more..

Sri Lanka to honor author Arthur C. Clarke and slain foreign minister with top award

Nov 13 (AP) Sri Lanka will bestow the country's highest civilian award on science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke and posthumously to slain Foreign Minister Lankan Kadirgamar, a government statement said Sunday. more..

Top health official says Sri Lanka does not have resources to fight bird flu

Nov 13 (AP) Sri Lanka does not have adequate resources to combat bird flu in case of an outbreak, the state-run Sunday Observer newspaper said, quoting a top government heath official. "We do not have good laboratory facilities and latest equipment," more..

South Asian leaders agree to introduce free trade, jointly fight terrorism

Nov 13 (AP) The leaders of seven South Asian countries were expected to sign a declaration Sunday to meet a Jan. 1 deadline for a free trade deal, take Afghanistan on as a new member, and jointly fight terrorism, officials said. more..

Sri Lanka vote campaign winding down peacefully

Nov 13 (AFP) Sri Lanka has banned liquor sales and political rallies ahead of this week's presidential vote as monitors described campaigning so far as the most peaceful in decades. The government announced that bars would remain shut for four days before and one day after Thursday's election while all campaign rallies must end by midnight Monday. more..

Sri Lanka candidates to woo India

Nov 13 (PTI) With Sri Lanka's presidential election campaign drawing to a close tomorrow, the two main contenders are poles apart on how to deal with the peace process and economy, but both want India's help in various areas if elected. more..

Lanka's key presidential aspirants getting ready for final assault

Nov 13 (UNI) With the election campaign coming to an end by midnight tomorrow, the key presidential aspirants of the November 17 poll are getting ready for the final assault to wind up their month-long campaign on a high note. more..

Hardline allies cost Sri Lanka's PM votes in east

Nov 13 (Reuters) Sri Lankan barber Nicholas Aruldas likes Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse, but he cannot bring himself to vote for him at this month's presidential election. Like many fellow minority ethnic Tamils and Muslims in Sri Lanka's war-torn, tsunami-battered east, more..

Radhika laments absence of a holistic Sri Lankan identity

Nov 13 (TW) The desperate struggle of Sri Lankans to establish a Sri Lankan identity reflecting the aspirations of various groups has resulted in an appalling human rights record for the country, said Sri Lanka's top human rights expert at an awards ceremony held in Montreal, Canada earlier this week. more..

I care for the people and speak to the head -Ranil

Nov 13 (TW) In a wide-ranging interview, UNP presidential candidate and Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe explains his relations with the US and India, the Ceasefire Agreement, federalism as a key to solving the ethnic question and economic policies. Excerpts: more..

No war, but consensus for peace -Mahinda

Nov 13 (TW) Rejecting claims that he has alienated the minority voter, UPFA Presidential candidate and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse says that so far solutions to the ethnic conflict have failed and he believes a fresh approach is necessary through wider consensus. Excerpts from the interview: more..