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Paddy sector spearheads economic revival of the North and East

Oct 27 (PIS) A study was recently undertaken by two staff members of the Peace Secretariat, based on numerical data published in the Central Bank Annual Reports, to assess the economic impact of the February 2002 Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) in the conflict-affected areas (North and East) in relation to the other areas, more..

Unite with me to fight separatism: PM

Oct 27 (SAMN) Addressing a public meeting in Kinniya Wednesday UPFA presidential candidate and Prime Minister, Mahinda Rajapakse said he hoped to find a permanent solution to the ethnic conflict in the north and east. He said the UPFA manifesto addressed the ethnic conflict under the section titled “Negenahira Navodaya” (regeneration of the east). more..

Bandula Gunawardena highly critical of Mahinda`s concepts

Oct 27 (SAMN) 'Mahinda Chinthanaya' reflects a state of mind of a person who appears to be totally remote from reality and one who cannot comprehend the complexities of the many problems the nation is beset with, UNP parliamentarian Bandula Gunawardena said. more..

Lal Peiris affair takes new turn - Licences to carry gun and run money-change `operation`

Oct 27 (LNP) The ongoing controversy over Justice Minister John Seneviratne stripping Lal Peiris of his JP post has taken a new turn with a senior policeman urging IGP Chandra Fernando to investigate the suspect`s claim that police made an attempt on his life outside Amarawathie restaurant in Kollupitiya. more..

Now syringe team in catheter racket

Oct 27 (LNP) The Medical Supplies Division (MSD) of the Health Ministry has imported catheters worth Rs. 500 million without any immediate need, Ministry sources told The Island yesterday. The MSD had already received four containers and three more containers of the catheters are on the way, more..

Only Mahinda can serve minoritry interests - Yapa

Oct 27 (LNP) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse`s campaign is now making a pitch to woo the minorities by saying that it is only a strong progressive Sinhala Buddhist leader that can best serve their interests. more..

Hettigoda to reorganise BOI

Oct 27 (DN) Presidential candidate Dr. Victor Hettigoda expressed confidence that he would be shortly asked to visit the North and East "If I get that opportunity I have a set of new ideas to offer to the LTTE members to consider in resolving the national problem. This country cannot move forward without them as they are part of this country," he said. more..

Sri Lanka appoints surveillance committees to tackle bird flu

Oct 27 (Xinhua) The Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry appointed three surveillance committees Wednesday to gear up for any possible threat of the deadly avian influenza. The decision was made to curb any possible threat of the avian influenza known as bird flu notwithstanding that not even a singlecase has been reported so far in Sri Lanka. more..

Lanka journalist attacked in row over poll report

Oct 27 (DPA) A broadcast news editor was injured when bodyguards for the chairman of Sri Lanka’s national radio attacked him after a row over imbalanced reporting in the run-up to presidential elections on November 17, Divina newspaper reported yesterday. more..

Sri Lanka tea production increases in September

Oct 27 (Xinhua) The Sri Lankan Tea Board said that the total reported production of black tea during September amounted to 24,057,829 kg as against 21,986,435 kg produced during the corresponding month in 2004, Daily News reported Thursday. more..

Sri Lanka poll longshot has peace balm for Tigers

Oct 27 (Reuters) Sri Lankan presidential race rank outsider Victor Hettigoda built a business empire battling aches and pains with Tiger balm-like herbal remedies. Now he says he has an elixir for peace with the island's Tiger rebels. more..

Tsunami donations should be shared by all in need-UN

Oct 27 (Reuters) Victims of last year's devastating tsunami are getting more aid than people caught in other "silent" conflicts and disasters around the world, and any donations should be shared by all in need, a U.N. official said. more..

Government says bird flu may enter Sri Lanka in December via migratory birds

Oct 27 (AP) The government said Thursday there is a possibility of bird flu spreading to Sri Lanka in December through migratory birds, but assured that all measures were in place to avert an outbreak. "There is a tendency," Health Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva told reporters. more..

Key Sinhalese activist killed in Trincomalee

Oct 27 (AFP) Suspected Tamil Tiger rebels shot dead on Thursday a leading activist from the majority Sinhalese community in the embattled northeast of Sri Lanka, police said. The victim, identified as Anura Abeyratne, was shot in the head in Trincomalee, more..

Sri Lanka election head rules out presidential vote in Tiger rebel territory

Oct 27 (AFP) No polling for next month's presidential ballot will take place in territory held by Tamil Tiger rebels, Sri Lanka's election chief said, but people living there would still be able to vote. more..

Popular monk to support opposition leader in presidential poll

Oct 27 (Xinhua) A popular Buddhist monk and preacher who is also a member of the Sri Lankan parliament has decided to support the main opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe in the country's Nov. 17 presidential poll. more..

A definite action plan to upgrade public transport has been drafted

Oct 28 (SLBC) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse stresses to formulate a firm national policy to provide a better transport service to the people. In his policy statement, he points out it would be put to action in five years with the view to strengthen the service. more..

Government shelves private sector funded oil refinery project

Oct 28 (LBO) Government shelves private sector funded oil refinery project in Sapugaskanda under trade union pressure. Last week, Cabinet gave the green light for a US$ 800 million oil refinery project financed by US company Global Energy Industrial Operations. more..

Sri Lanka Sierra Cables IPO seen subscribed over 8 times

Oct 28 (DJ) The initial public offering of Sierra Cables was snapped up on its opening day Wednesday, and is likely to be subscribed by more than eight times, traders said. "For now, we can say the issue has been subscribed by a minimum of five times, but it could be much higher," more..

Health Ministry gives Rs 250 mn to start bird-flue prevention programme

Oct 28 (LBO) Health Ministry allocates Rs 250 million as initial funding for bird-flue prevention programme. “The prevention programme will increase our capabilities to detect bird flue by increasing laboratory facilities and testing facilities,” more..

Golf: Sri Lankan steals the show on day one

Oct 28 (PTI) Sri Lanka's caddie turned pro Anura Rohana stole the thunder from the bigger stars with an eight under 64 for the sole lead after the first round at the Hero Honda Indian Open golf championship here today. more..

Prime minister says he will work for permanent peace

Oct 28 (AP) Sri Lanka's prime minister pledged Thursday to work for a permanent peace with the Tamil Tiger rebels as his presidential election campaign extended into separatist guerrilla-held territory amid tight security. more..

Bishops blame non-inclusive peace process for communalism

Oct 28 (HT) The Sri Lanka Catholic Bishops' Conference (SLCBC) has blamed the "non-inclusive" peace process for the prevailing climate of religious intolerance in the island. Without mentioning anyone, any party or any religious group by name, the SLCBC hinted in a statement on Wednesday, that the previous UNP government had helped trigger majoritarian religious intolerance in Buddhist-dominated South by its "non-inclusive" peace process. more..

Sri Lanka may ring in changes for Mohali tie

Oct 28 (PTI) Stung by the comprehensive defeat in Nagpur, the Sri Lankan team management is contemplating a few changes in the team for the second cricket one-dayer here tomorrow. Sri Lankan captain Marvan Atapattu said they had not yet finalised the twelve for the floodlit contest but indicated that there could be changes in the team and also the batting order. more..

Another complaint against in Bribery Commission against Premier

Oct 28 (LeN) The UNP lodged a complaint with the Bribery Commission today (27) alleging that Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa is employing public property including helicopters for personal and political activities. Deputy UNP Secretary Tissa Attanayake said the compliant was made under provision 70 of the Bribery Act. more..

Contaminated syringes caused meningitis deaths in Sri Lanka, committee says

Oct 28 (AP) Contaiminated syringes were the most likely cause of a recent outbreak of meningitis that killed four pregnant women and sickened dozens of others in Sri Lanka, a presidential committee said Thursday. more..

State broadcaster's news director assaulted in chairman's office

Oct 28 (FMM) The Free Media Movement (FMM) condemns the physical assault on Mr. Raja Katugampola, news director of the state-controlled Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), by the SLBC chairman's private security guards. The assault took place on 26 October 2005 in the chairman's office. more..

Second freedom struggle to take off the ground

Oct 28 (AT) In the dark hours of midnight on 23/11/89, a combined team of armed force from Divulapitiya Police and Hunumulla Army Camp raided the Welagana Temple, Divulapitiya and took away Ven Kapugalewe Indawimala Thero, removed all clothes to be fully naked and while taking him on to he Badalgama bridge beaten him mercilessly. more..

Tamil Eelam Judicial service out of the barrel of a gun

Oct 28 (AT) Under the shadow of terrorism, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the Tamil rebel outfit has propounded a judicial service system with the view to have an effective and impartial judicial system in the ad hoc administrative regions that are coming under them. more..

SEP holds election meeting in Kandy

Oct 28 (wsws) Wije Dias, the Socialist Equality Party (SEP) candidate for the November 17 presidential election in Sri Lanka, addressed a public meeting in Kandy as part of his campaign. A cross-section of university students, workers and professionals attended the SEP meeting held in the D.S. Senanayake Public Library Auditorium in the centre of the city. more..

Wimal Weerawansa sends a Letter of Demand against ‘Irudina’ news paper

Oct 28 (LT) The JVP Propaganda Secretary Mr Wimal Weerawansa has sent a Letter of Demand against ‘Irudina’ news paper for insulting him in this paper. He has claimed a sum of Rupees 100 million as damages to be paid within 14 days. The Letter of Demand says that if this is not met within the stipulated period legal action would be taken against this humiliation. more..

Maharouf appointed NEPC Agriculture Secretary

Oct 28 (TN) Mr. A.R.M.Maharouf, an experienced agronomist and Director at Socio-Economics and Planning Centre (SEPC), was appointed Secretary to the North East Provincial Ministry of Agriculture and Land with effect from October 26 by North East Provincial Governor Mr.Tyronne Fernando, more..

US, Sri Lanka agree to tackle terrorism

Oct 28 (ANN) The Sri Lankan and the US governments yesterday signed a Memorandum of Intent (MoI) to enhance anti-terrorist activities and strengthen cooperation between the two countries in tackling terrorism. The terms cover training and technical cooperation to upgrade Sri Lanka's anti-terrorism abilities to help it deter and counter terrorism. more..

Adamant LTTE mobs defy SLMM & ICRC appeals

Oct 28 (SLA) AN AGITATING MOB of Tamil Tigers (LTTE), who were trying to enter cleared areas in VAVUNIYA through OMANTHAI Entry/Exit point on Friday (28) morning carrying a huge cardboard cut-out of their leader PRABHAKARAN and many LTTE flags, was held up by the Police and troops since their action amounts to a gross violation of the MoU. more..

Police tear gas & disperse troublemakers

Oct 28 (SLA) POLICE AND TROOPS were compelled to teargas and disperse an unruly mob of about 25-30 Tamil Tigers and their supporters at THANDIKULAM Army camp Friday (28) morning at about 9.30 a.m. after those men began to throw stones and other harmful paraphernalia at Policemen and passing Police vehicles. more..

LTTE incite civilians against Security Forces

Oct 28 (SLA) ONE MORE LTTE instigated agitation against Security Forces (SF) in the general area of ACHCHUVELI, JAFFNA is in progress this afternoon (28) over a civil matter in which the SF has been blamed after an unidentified man had allegedly entered a house where only three girls reside with their mother. more..

As PM, Mahinda should control sky rocketing COL before elections

Oct 28 (UNP) As never before in the history of the country, cost of living is sky rocketing and as the prime minister of the country, Mr.Mahinda Rajapaksha should control it now without waiting until he becomes the president, Former Deputy Minister of Finance Bandula Gunawardana said at a press briefing held in Colombo this morning. more..

Mahinda shedding crocodile tears after depriving children of mid day meal –Kabir Hashim

Oct 28 (LM) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse was shedding crocodile tears after being responsible for depriving school children of the mid day meal, the UNP said Wednesday. Rajapakse was a member of the Peoples Alliance government that discontinued the miday meal for school children introduced by the late President Ranasinghe Premadasa. more..

Northern Displaced Muslims declare ‘Week of mourning’

Oct 28 (LM) The internally displaced Muslims, who were evicted from the north and east by the LTTE in 1980 declared a "Week of Mourning" today to launch a signature campaign to coincide with the 15th anniversary of their eviction by the LTTE. They will commence a peaceful march from Kattar to Puttalam today in a bid to collect 100,000 signatures for a petition more..

A special discussion on Presidential election

Oct 28 (LT) A special discussion on Presidential election was scheduled to be held at 10.30 a.m. today at the Office of the Commissioner of Elections. All the candidates were expected to meet the Commissioner of Elections at this meeting. The main objective of the meeting is to discuss the present situation on the election campaign. more..

Uduwe Dhamaloka has relapsed on pledges – Ratana Thero

Oct 28 (LT) Ven. Aturaliye Ratana Thero yesterday condemned the actions of Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thero who pledged his support to the Opposition leader and UNP Presidential candidate Mr Ranil Wickramasinghe. He said that Ven. Dhammaloka Thero has gone back on the pledges he made at Sri Daladaya Maligawa in Kandy and Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi in Anuradhapura to safeguard the unitary status of the country. more..

Rights of Tamil community safe-guarded by Mahinda-JVP pact – Karuna Amman

Oct 28 (LT) Karuna Amman of the Eastern Province has told the Tamil newspaper ‘Tamil Alai’ that only through Mahinda-JVP agreement presented before the Presidential election could achieve the rights of the Tamil community. He has told the most important fact is to safe guard the democracy and whether it is federal or unitary are less important to the former. more..

Cops smell LTTE threat for Mohali ODI

Oct 28 (AFP) The Punjab police have taken all precautionary, pre-emptive measures apprehending an LTTE threat during the second India-Sri Lanka ODI match, slated for Friday here at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium. "The most serious threat which looms large is that from the LTTE" Punjab DGP S S Virk told UNI here today. more..

Police to probe import of jet fuel

Oct 28 (GT) The police have launched an investigation into the import of aviation fuel by a businessman based in Colombo city. The Intelligence Division had obtained information that the businessman had imported aviation fuel for the LTTE and he is likely to be arrested within the next few days, police sources said yesterday. more..

UNP vows to make army ‘attractive’

Oct 28 (GT) UNP yesterday vowed to make the army attractive in order to encourage more youth to enlist while providing all the requirements. “We will not dissolve any brigade or remove any soldiers. Instead, the UNP, upon our leader Ranil Wickremesinghe being elected as the president, will take steps to improve the strength of all security forces to face emerging requirements of the 21st century,” more..

Norway awaits Lanka vote to push peace bid

Oct 28 (PIS) Norway's new Government expressed willingness to keep up peace brokering in Sri Lanka, but indicated that any progress could be expected only after next month's Presidential Elections. Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Store said that Oslo's envoys would sit down with a new Colombo Government after the November 17 election in a bid to revive the stalled peace talks. more..

Travel ban no bar for LTTE, EU meet in Brussels

Oct 28 (PIS) Controversy surrounds the recent meeting in Brussels between EU representatives and a delegation that represented the LTTE. The two-hour meeting primarily focused on the devastating impact the recently imposed EU travel ban was having on the LTTE. more..

President issues directives to control spread of meningitis

Oct 28 (PRIU) The Committee appointed by President Chandrika Kumaratunga to inquire into the meningitis deaths at the De Zoysa Maternity and Castle Street Hospital and certain other hospitals has submitted its report. The President agreed with the findings and more..

Sri Lanka sends relief supplies to Islamabad

Oct 28 (PRIU) Sri Lanka sent its first consignment of relief aid to Pakistan’s earthquake victims last week. On the initiation of President Chandrika Kumaratunga 7500 large and small tents, two metric tons of tea, six metric tons of rice and two metric tons of dhal were flown to Islamabad, by a special Sri Lanka Air Force aircraft. more..

Strike halts health services in Lanka

Oct 28 (SAMN) The countrywide health strike involving Assistant Medical Officers and Registered Medical Officers, clerical staff, nurses, paramedics, laboratory technologists and hospital minor staff brought the health service to a standstill, with the strike expected to continue Friday as well. more..