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Canada’s Tiger extortion gangs carry on regardless

Feb 2 (ISL) Sanjivan Kandasamy is going to Sri Lanka shortly to sponsor his newly-wed wife to Canada. Before obtaining his Canadian passport he called on the Toronto offices of the World Tamil Movement (Ulagath Thamilar) to obtain his plastic documentation, the size of a credit card or debit card without which he will not be able to fulfill his plans in Sri Lanka. more..

Weerawansa’s allegations against Sunday Leader editor are baseless

Feb 2 (ISL) The Jantha Vimuthi Peramuna Parliamentarian Wimal Weerawansa who suffered a major handicap when President Mahinda Rajapakse urged him from refraining attacking Norway and Erik Solhiem had now setup all his guns against private media organizations. more..

One taken and another given to Premier

Feb 2 (LeN) Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremenayake was sworn in before the President as Minister of Internal Administration this morning. Wickremanayake in addition to being the Premier held the portfolio of Disaster Management but when UNP parliamentarian Mahinda Samarasinghe joined the government he was offered that portfolio. more..

Arts Council scrapped by 'Chintana Order'

Feb 2 (LeN) The Chairman of the Sri Lanka Arts Council and the board of directors have been ordered to resign from their posts by the Secretary to the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and National Heritage as they have rejected to present a book written by a former Secretary to a literary award ceremony. more..

We haven't violate cease-fire since Solheim's discussion - Daya Master

Feb 2 (LeN) The security forces and paramilitary groups are responsible for the kidnapping of 5 TRO employees, the Media Spokesman of the LTTE Daya Master has alleged. Since Prabhakaran's discussion with Norwegian Envoy Eric Solheim at Kilinochchi on the 25th, the LTTE has not violated the cease-fire agreement and not done anything that would obstruct the peace process, more..

Kidnapping of TRO personnel a propaganda trick of the LTTE to abandon talks -- Karuna's spokesperson

Feb 2 (AT) ThamilEelam Makkal Viduthalai Puligal (TMVP) has dismissed the kidnapping accusations leveled against them by the LTTE as a propaganda ploy to abandon the proposed talks in Geneva. When Asian Tribune contacted the TVMP spokesperson, Thooyavan (a nom de guerre), he said that it would be a violation of their unilateral declaration of a ceasefire. more..

Need for effective communication and transparency during tsunami reconstruction highlighted

Feb 2 (AT) The need for more effective communication, widespread transparency and robust monitoring came out strongly at a workshop that discussed the eight "Guiding Principles" for tsunami reconstruction. more..

CMC says it will clear Colombo’s garbage pileup by end of the week

Feb 2 (LBO) The Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) says it will clear Colombo’s garbage pileup by end of the week. “We have cleared most of the garbage by now. By this weekend we can clear up almost all of it,” said Lalith Wickramaratne, Director Engineering, Solid Waste Management, CMC. more..

Aviva acquires Sri Lankan insurer, sees synergy with Indian co.

Feb 2 (PTI) After its successful stint in India, British insurer Aviva Plc has increased its footprint in the sub-continent by acquiring Sri Lanka's Eagle Insurance Ltd for 15 million pounds. Aviva has acquired 51 per cent stake in Lanka's third largest insurance company Eagle more..

TDC demands release of TRO and LTTE abducted political prisoners

Feb 2 (ISL) The Tamil Democratic Congress (TDC) in a media release strongly condemned the alleged kidnapping of the officials of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation by unidentified gunman at Walikanda in the Polonnaruwa District. TDC appealed government to take pro-active steps to release these victims. more..

EROS leader condemns President’s remarks

Feb 2 (ISL) In an interview with Independent the EROS leader Nesan stated that he was shocked and dismayed by the President’s remarks and warned that this would only create further problems if the LTTE is singled out as the sole representative of the Tamils. more..

Pattalipuram tsunami hit families receive livelihood assistance

Feb 2 (TN) Save the Children, a non-Governmental Organization, has provided financial support to 232 families affected by tsunami in Pattalipuram in Muttur under an income generation project formulated by the Pattalipuram Poonchcholai Peoples' Development Organization (PPPDO), sources in Trincomalee said. more..

Lorry Carrying Gelignite Sticks Arrested

Feb 2 (SLA) POLICE ON INFORMATION given by some civilians apprehended a Canter lorry (NW JA 0971) with 896 gelignite sticks while they were being taken to MANNAR on 30 January 2006 around 10.45 a.m. A suspect, W.S. RATNAYAKE of MANAWA, KIRIMETIYAWA was arrested with the vehicle on suspicion. more..

Not practical to do things said in political stage says govt

Feb 2 (ISL) Power and Energy Minister John Seneviratne said that there is a clear difference in the things said in the political stage and things done in the political scene. He referred this comments to the role of Norway in the peace process. more..

“I will work within the international agreement on children”– Mahinda Rajapaksha

Feb 2 (LT) President Mahinda Rajapakse said that he is dedicated for the benefit of the children of all communities in the country. He said it was his dream ‘to see all children, be they Sihhala, Tamil, Muslim or Burgher live as brothers and sisters in the new Sri Lanka that we shall build.’ more..

Gas & electricity go up

Feb 2 (LT) The price of gas has gone up again by Rs.110/- Accordingly, the gas cylinder of 12.5 kg that cost Rs.850/- is now priced at Rs.960/- When ‘Lankatruth’ inquired from the Chairman of the Consumer Protection Authority, he said they had to take an unpopular decision though their duty was to protect consumers. more..

5 named for Constitutional Council

Feb 2 (LT) Names of five as members of constitutional Council have been forwarded to President Mahinda Rajapakse for approval. The members have been named with the agreement between Prime Minister Mr. Ratnasiri Wickremanayke and Leader of the Opposition Mr. Ranil Wickremasinghe. more..

Agitations will continue in Parliament against abductions! - TNA

Feb 2 (LT) If the Government doesn’t take measures to halt abductions in the North and the East they would carry out a continuous agitation in the Parliament said TNA Parliamentarian Mawai Senathiraja. He said so at a media briefing held yesterday (1st) at the Parliamentary complex. more..

Fundamental Rights case against former President Chandrika Kumaratunga tomorrow

Feb 2 (LT) A petition filed against former President Mrs Chandrika Kumaratunga will be examined before a three member panel at the High Courts tomorrow. A fundamental rights petition asking to minimize the privileges offered to Mrs Kumaratunga has been filed by three lawyers. more..

Do International Organisation believe a terrorist could be trusted? – Wimal Weerwansa

Feb 2 (LT) According to a news item appeared in the ‘Daily Mirror’ and ‘Lankadeepa’ on the 1st of February 2006 it is learnt that officials of four top international aid organizations are scheduled to meet Political Wing leader Thamilselvam and other leaders of the LTTE in Kilinochchi. more..

The second zoological park will be set up in Pinnawala

Feb 2 (SLBC) The government of UK has offered a sum of 300 million pounds to set up the second national zoological park in Sri Lanka close to the elephant orphanage in Pinnawala. The construction of the second zoological park was initiated by then Tourism minister Dharmasiri Senanayake in 1998. more..

Roads in the north and east provinces to be renovated parallel to other provinces

Feb 2 (SLBC) The Road Development Authority will renovate the roads in the north and east provinces parallel to other provinces. The authority will lay a special emphasis on the reconstruction of roads and bridges destroyed by war. more..

Investigations by Govt. Analyst on Bomb scare in Parliament

Feb 2 (LT) The Govt. Analyst has been summoned to carry out an investigation on the matter which caused the postponement of Parliament this morning. The investigations are under way assisted by Special Task Force and the security forces along with the Parliament staff. more..

Chinese women appeal conviction in brothel case

Feb 2 (ANN) The Supreme Court last week allowed a special leave to Appeal Application filed by five Chinese women convicted by the Kurunegala Magistrate’s Court of running a house of ill-fame. The five convicts appealed to the High Court of Kurunegala against the conviction and the sentence imposed by the Magistrate. more..

Minister blames local media for ethnic problem

Feb 2 (GT) Constitutional Affairs and National Integration Minister D E W Gunasekera has attacked the local media saying that it had created the ethnic problem and later aggravated it. “First of all, it is necessary to enlighten media owners, editors and journalists if we are to make headway in solving the problem. more..

Investigate TRO complaint!

Feb 2 (PIS) The Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) has complained that some of its staffers have been abducted by 'paramilitaries' near the Welikande army checkpoint. The army denies any knowledge of the incident and the government media has sought to dismiss the complaint as a ruse. more..

10 per cent government revenue from CTC

Feb 2 (SAMN) Ceylon Tobacco Company has contributed Rs. 31.6 billion to the government in 2005, meeting 10 percent of government revenue by way of increased excise rates on cigarettes and raids carried out by law enforcement authorities to minimise the presence of smuggled and illicit cigarettes in the market. more..

Tiger ‘traitors’ caught and tortured?

Feb 2 (SAMN) The LTTE has allegedly captured two Tiger informants who are believed to have been directly involved in the recent ambush of an LTTE convoy at Adampan in Mannar. Several LTTE cadres including a senior Tiger ‘officer’ from the north were believed to have been killed in the attack. more..

Rs.80m to modernise salterns

Feb 2 (SAMN) The Ministry of Health is to embark on a Rs 80 million modernisation programme of the Hambantota and Puttalam salterns, which is expected to help curb the distribution of adulterated iodized salt. Iodine deficiency is identified as one of the major issues in the health sector of the country. more..

Court stays Ruhunu Varsity decision

Feb 2 (LNP) The Court of Appeal yesterday issued a stay order suspending the operation of the decision of the University Council of the Ruhunu University, to remove Dr. H. M. K. K. Pathirana from the post of Head of the Department of Chemistry, and appoint, Professor R. N. Pathirana to act for him pending an inquiries more..

Karu suggests politicos adhere to ICS motto

Feb 2 (LNP) `The politicians in Sri Lanka should adhere to the motto of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers, `Our Word, Our Bond`. If they do Sri Lanka will be a better place to live in,` said Karu Jayasuriya, Deputy Leader of the United National Party on Tuesday. more..

GL scotches rumours

Feb 2 (LNP) Former UNP Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris yesterday scotched speculation that he was planning to leave the UNP. 'There has never been, and there is not now, any question of my leaving the United National Party, of which I remain an active member,' Prof. Peiris told the media. more..

Anti-liquor Bill: SC wants some clauses amended

Feb 2 (LNP) The JHU Bill seeking to set up a National Authority on Tobacco and Alcohol is not inconsistent with the Constitution, except for certain clauses which needed to be amended, the Supreme Court ruled yesterday. Speaker W.J.M. Lokubandara announced the Court decision on the Bill, more..

Irked Sri Lankan workers march to their consulate

Feb 2 (KT) Over 40 Sri Lankan workers of Al Noor Garment Factory in Sharjah marched up to the Sri Lankan Consulate in Dubai yesterday, protesting against the mission's delay in resolving their issues. They alleged that they had been stranded without salary, food, water and electricity for over five months now. more..

Defeat Tigers' image boost plan in Geneva - JHU

Feb 2 (DN) LTTE attempts to make use of the Geneva talks to achieve their demand for a separate state or to demand for equal status with the Sri Lankan Government should be defeated, Jathika Hela Urumaya Policy Maker Champika Ranawaka told the Daily News yesterday. more..

Yahoo Photos

Feb 2 (Reuters) Chinese acrobats perform in Colombo February 2, 2006. The Chinese Acrobatic Circus is in Sri Lanka to inaugurate the Year of the Dog. more..

Rs. 50 m allocated for youth development in Sri Lanka

Feb 2 (OW) Youth Affairs and Sports Ministry has allocated Rs.50 million to implement several projects with the intention of accelerating development pertaining to youth affairs this year. The Ministry has already made arrangements to implement a series of youth development programmes countrywide to uplift the skills and creative talents of youth more..

US help to benefit Sri Lankan disabled

Feb 2 (IANS) Thousands of disabled in Sri Lanka will benefit from the skills of five health care professionals who have returned to the country after spending three years training overseas. The US Thursday honored these graduates, who learned state-of-the-art theory and hands-on technology in the field of prosthetic and orthotic devices for the disabled. more..

UN deplores abduction of aid workers in Lanka

Feb 2 (HT) The United Nations on Wednesday "deplored" the reported abduction of relief workers belonging to the TRO, as the number of missing persons went up from five to ten. "These are humanitarian aid workers who devote their professional lives to serving those in need. Therefore, they have the right to respect and protection," more..

Govt doubts veracity of LTTE claim about abductions

Feb 2 (HT) The Sri Lankan government has raised doubts about the veracity of the LTTE's claim that ten personnel of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) were kidnapped by pro-government paramilitaries late last month. more..

India should be a part of Lankan peace bid: Study

Feb 2 (IANS) An international study on Sri Lanka's faltering peace process wants India to become a member of the co-chairs group that also includes the US, Norway, Japan and the European Union. The study however notes that New Delhi may not be keen in view of its past disastrous experience in the island nation. more..

Sri Lanka says Indian government taking steps to release 24 Sri Lankan fishermen

Feb 2 (AP) India will soon free all 24 Sri Lankan fishermen accused of straying into its territorial waters as part of an agreement between the two countries to increase cooperation in the fishing industry, Sri Lanka's government said. more..

Sri Lanka accuses Tamil relief agency of failing to cooperate in investigation of missing workers

Feb 2 (AP) The government on Thursday accused a Tamil relief agency of failing to help investigate the alleged disappearance of eight Tamil relief workers. "The investigation by our CID is raising more questions than answers" Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera told a news conference, more..

Sri Lanka names de Silva to head peace talks delegation

Feb 2 (AP) Sri Lanka on Thursday named Nimal Siripala de Silva, a veteran politician and lawyer, to head a government team at upcoming peace talks with Tamil Tiger rebels. Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera announced the appointment at a news conference but declined to give any other details. more..

Getty Images

Feb 2 (AFP) Opposition leader, Ranil Wickremesinghe (C) is flanked by other opposition legislators during a sit down protest in Colombo, to demand the release of his legislator, S. B. Dissanayake serving a two-year jail term more..

Parliament suspended over security concern

Feb 2 (AP) Parliament was adjourned for two weeks Thursday after police sniffer dogs began barking inside the chamber, sparking fears of a security threat. "Parliament commenced and in two minutes' time, the speaker adjourned sittings until Feb. 14, citing the security situation," Assistant Secretary General of Parliament Neil Iddawela said. more..

Sri Lanka to consider lodging racial complaint

Feb 3 (TA) SRI Lanka will decide today whether to follow South Africa's lead and lodge an official complaint to the International Cricket Council about the racist crowd behaviour that has followed visiting cricketers and marred this summer's tri-series in Australia. more..

Government blamed

Feb 3 (BBC) The united nations have called on governments including Sri lanka to look in to the immediate humanitarian needs of Tsunami victims. Speaking at a press conference to launch a report entitled Tsunami Response: A Human Rights Assessment, Miloon Kothari said the report demonstrated clearly that Governments had failed to uphold the human rights to food, health, housing and livelihood of their most vulnerable citizens. more..

Sri Lanka says to probe kidnap of Tamil aid workers

Feb 3 (Reuters) Sri Lanka ordered an inquiry on Thursday into the fate of eight Tamil aid workers who Tamil Tiger rebels say were abducted by government-backed paramilitaries in a move that threatened crunch peace talks. more..

Tales from Sri Lanka's front line

Feb 3 (BBC) For the last two months Sri Lanka has appeared to teeter on the brink of a return to civil war. The government and the Tamil Tiger rebels have agreed to talks to firm up a fragile ceasefire. But recent violence in the north and east has made life for many there virtually intolerable. more..