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A war will erupt if decided to neutralize us – Karuna Amman

Feb 23 (LT) LTTE Karuna Fraction says, Prabhakaran who has become frightened of their strength, is pressing the Government to disarm them. They forewarn if the Government will take steps to neutralize them a war will be inevitable. Karuna Amman made this warning in a telephone conversation with our special correspondent this morning (23rd). more..

JVP on the rejected nomination lists of UNP and UPFA

Feb 23 (AT) The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna, yesterday decided to intervene in the court cases filed by two major parties including the United National Party and the United People's Freedom seeking court order compelling the District Returning officers to accept their rejected nomination lists. more..

Programme to construct 50,000 houses for plantation labour is underway

Feb 23 (SLBC) A program to construct 50,000 houses for plantation labour is underway. Director of Estate Housing of the Ministry of Estate Infrastructure Facilities and Livestock Resources Sunil Wijewardena says the Ministry aims to build 10,000 houses within this year. more..

Govt. plan to amend ceasefire sidelined

Feb 23 (PIS) The Government and the LTTE, for the first time in three years, sat face to face at the negotiating table yesterday in a crucial bid to salvage a ceasefire agreement signed exactly four years ago, but as the Norwegian facilitators set out the agenda it was apparent the Government’s plan to amend the agreement was effectively sidelined. more..

Anti-Tiger demonstration in Geneva

Feb 23 (LT) Tamil, Muslim and Sinhalese migrants living in European countries staged a protest demonstration against LTTE atrocities in front of the UN office in Geneva last evening. They displayed placards written in Tamil, English, Sinhalese and French and shouted slogans in Tamil, English and Sinhalese. more..

Expect a realistic outcome - Solheim

Feb 23 (LNP) The leader of the Sri Lankan delegation, Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva shook hands with the ailing LTTE theoretician Anton Balasingham during the opening ceremony at the Chateau de Bossey in Celigney. Under heavy security checks for journalists the opening remarks were delivered by Mr Urs Ziswiler, more..

Tigers grin at Karuna statement

Feb 23 (LNP) LTTE rebel Karuna Amman`s statement, to a radio station in London, that LTTE should hand over their arms in the presence of international observers, is amusing, Daya `Master`, LTTE spokesman in Kilinochchi said yesterday (22). He said Karuna Amman was not aware of the measures to be taken during a ceasefire and was making a statement that was of no value. more..

Cops to get modern academy

Feb 23 (LNP) The Police Department will have a state-of-the-art Police Academy in Matara. The Department has identified 64,000 police personnels` training needs to design training programmes for the police with a view to enhancing the capacity of police officers on civilian policing. more..

UNP Colombo list: Mystery deepens

Feb 23 (SAMN) The controversy over the rejected UNP list to the Colombo Municipal Council polls took a dramatic turn Thursday when the two member committee probing the issue came across evidence of a purported 'malayali charm', as oil had been found in the list when it reached Colombo Parliamentarian M.H. Mohammed at 11.45 a.m. on February 16. more..

Bopitiya’s wife cries at Tiger ‘court’

Feb 23 (SAMN) Disna Manori Bopitiya, wife of Sub Inspector Bandu Bopitiya whose remand term was extended by an additional month by the LTTE, Wednesday wept at the LTTE Kilinochchi ‘court’ where her husband was presented. Their daughter Dewmini too was with her. more..

Sanctuary under threat

Feb 23 (SAMN) Environmentalists Wednesday accused the Wildlife Director General of exceeding his powers by granting permission for a guesthouse to be built in the middle of the Kalametiya wildlife sanctuary. The Environment Foundation Limited alleged the Wildlife Department head had granted permission to the Coast Conservation Department to build a guesthouse within the area, more..

International pressure vital to transform LTTE - Dayan Jayatilake

Feb 23 (DN) International pressure and support are the fundamental ingredients needed in the process of transforming the LTTE from a militant entity to a politico - administrative one, said leading political analyst Dayan Jayatilake. Delivering a lecture at yesterday's symposium that followed the launch 'Peace Negotiations in Sri Lanka' volume I and II, more..

Youth, Scarborough man charged in abduction, murder of store clerk

Feb 23 (NP) Two more people have been charged in connection with the abduction and murder last year of Thanushan Jeyakumaran, an 18-year-old grocery store clerk. Toronto police revealed yesterday they had laid manslaughter and accessory after the fact to murder charges against a man who was 17 at the time of Mr. Jeyakumaran's slaying. more..

SL wants rectification of anomalies in truce pact

Feb 23 (HT) The government has asked for the rectification of some "grave anomalies" in the Ceasefire Agreement at the talks with the LTTE, which began in Geneva on Wednesday. Nimal Sripala de Silva, said that the CFA entered into in February 2002, by the then Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, was "contrary" to the Sri Lankan constitution and "prejudicial" to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka. more..

Dream come true for Ceylon Colony Tamil repatriates

Feb 23 (NIP) About 140 families of Tamil repatriates from Sri Lanka, who are living for more than 25 years in Ceylon colony here got a solution for their problems of water and electricity after a long struggle. These families of Tamil repatriates from Mandapam refuge camp in Ramanathapuram district were made to settle in a land given to the Employees Housing Society of a private spinning mill here in the eighties. more..

Tsunami affected families demand relief, protest continues

Feb 23 (TN) The office of the Kalmunai Divisional Secretariat (Muslim division) is under siege for the second day, Thursday as several hundred tsunami affected families continued their sit-in-protest demanding that they should be provided with permanent houses and compensation, sources in Kalmunai said. more..

Sri Lanka Tigers say shelled on last day of talks

Feb 23 (Reuters) Talks between Sri Lanka's government and Tamil Tiger rebels aimed at averting a new civil war entered their final day on Thursday, with the rebels accusing the army of firing artillery at them. The army denied shelling rebel lines. "It is a deliberate campaign against the army," said military spokesman Brigadier Prasad Samarasinghe. more..

Sri Lanka military suspects Tamil rebels in Muslim man's slaying; rebels deny involvement

Feb 23 (AP) The military said it suspected Tamil Tiger rebels fatally shot a Muslim man in eastern Sri Lanka but the rebels denied involvement Thursday, as talks to save the country's cease-fire entered their second and final day in Geneva. more..

Govt, rebels, try for second day to salvage cease-fire

Feb 23 (AP) Sri Lankan government negotiators and Tamil Tiger rebels, exchanging accusations of bad faith, sought Thursday to salvage their tattered cease-fire and prevent renewed war. The two sides clashed at their opening meeting on Wednesday on whether to amend their truce agreement, signed exactly four years earlier. more..

Pirapaharan felicitates Charles Anthony Brigade fighters

Feb 23 (TN) Leader of Liberation Tigers, V Pirapaharan Wednesday participated in a ceremony at the Roy Training Camp of the Charles Anthony special brigade and presented awards to cadres completing Mortar, Artillery training, LTTE media sources from Kilinochchi said. Special Commander with the Charles Anthony Brigade, Amutab, presided the event. more..

Swiss talks expose gulf in Sri Lanka conflict, foreign pressure mounts

Feb 23 (AFP) Talks between Sri Lanka's warring parties entered a second and final day as foreign pressure mounted on both sides to show flexibility and save the island's troubled peace process. Although negotiators from the Sri Lankan government and the rebel LTTE sat down at the table, their uncompromising stands were putting the entire ice-breaking initiative at risk, diplomats said on Thursday. more..

Yahoo Photos

Feb 23 (AFP) A Sri Lankan man reads a local newspaper in Colombo, carrying news about the negotiations between the Colombo government and the rebel LTTE in Celigny, Switzerland. Talks between Sri Lanka's warring parties entered a second and final day more..

Sri Lanka warring parties under pressure on final day of talks

Feb 23 (AFP) Talks on saving Sri Lanka's troubled truce got underway here on the second and final day amid foreign pressure on the warring sides to be flexible. Negotiators from the Sri Lankan government and the rebel LTTE sat down again after the two sides made strong opening statements a day earlier sticking to their guns, diplomats said. more..

Nepal should learn lessons from Sri Lanka: Activists

Feb 24 (NN) While representatives of the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tiger rebels sat for two-day long peace dialogue in Geneva beginning Wednesday to find a negotiated settlement to the two-decade-old ethnic conflict, Nepali peace activists said the royal government and Maoist rebels should learn lessons from the island nation. more..

ADB to take insurance cover to Sri Lanka’s rural homes

Feb 24 (LBO) The Asian Development Bank will help take insurance products to poor households in Sri Lanka, through a US$ 600,000 technical assistance grant, the Bank said on Thursday. There are currently no formal insurance schemes serving poor households. more..

Mubarak and Mashud fined

Feb 24 (CI) Jehan Mubarak, the Sri Lanka batsman and Bangladesh's Khaled Mashud have both been fined for breaching the ICC Code of Conduct during their one-dayer on Wednesday. Mubarek was fined 25 percent of his match fee for showing dissent at the umpire's decision, while Mashud was fined 20 percent after being found guilty of bringing the game into disrepute. more..

Avoid politicizing Child rights issues- Thamilchelvan

Feb 24 (TN) Speaking in the second session of the first day of the talks in Geneva, S P Thamilchelvan said that the accusations directed at the LTTE on Under-age recruitment, although is directly relevent to the Cease Fire Agreement (CFA), needs to be viewed in the context of two decades of war and the continued violation of the rights of children during this period. more..

"Look at the centre, Mr. Balasingham" – Media at the Geneva Peace talks

Feb 24 (AT) When the two chief negotiators, Nimal Siripala de Silva and Anton Balasingham posed for the cameras yesterday, after the formal opening of the peace talks at Chateau de Bossey in Geneva, the photographers repeatedly asked Balasingham to "look at the centre" as he was turning his head away to face cameras shooting from all angles. more..

Former Mrs. World demands right to vote

Feb 24 (LeN) Rosy Senanayake, a former Mrs. World filed a petition in the Appeal Court today challenging the rejection of the United National Party nomination list for Colombo Municipal Council. The ex-beauty queen in her petition has stated that she is an active member of the UNP and that she would be deprived of her right to vote more..

LTTE blames Karuna for child recruitment

Feb 24 (HT) The mainstream LTTE has blamed the renegade commander, Karuna, for the recruitment of children for its combat units. Making a presentation at the on-going talks with the Sri Lankan government in Geneva, SP Tamilselvan, said that Karuna had recruited more than 2000 underage youths "against the orders of our leadership" before he was discharged from the organization for misconduct. more..

'Photographer' from Lanka causes flutter at Jaya function

Feb 24 (UNI) Police apprehended a Lankan national and a relative of his for taking pictures at a government function in which Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa presented awards to 'best film artistes' at the centenary auditorium in the University of Madras here today. more..

Next talks 19th April in Geneva

Feb 24 (BBC) Norwegian International affairs minister had just announced the parties had agreed to hole next round of talks in April. The talks about the ceasefire will be from 19th to 21st of April. Both parties have agreed to ensure that there would not be intimidation, abductions or killings. more..

Government obstructs Swaranawahini's political week

Feb 24 (LeN) The 'Deshapalana Sathiya' program (political week) telecast over Swaranawahini channel every Friday has been suspended due to pressure exerted by a senior government figure. As the program constantly exposed internal political bickering of the ruling party and was critical of the government, more..

Secretary refuses to foot 'Taj Palace' bill of Minister Bogollagama

Feb 24 (LeN) The Secretary to the Enterprise Development and Investment Promotions, T.Hewage has refused to approve a bill for the period Minister Bogollagama spent in the Maharaja Wing of the 'Taj Palace' Hotel during his to India at the tail end of the last year. more..

While Chandrika is pulling down the sarong of Mahinda, the JVP is pulling his leg -SB

Feb 24 (LeN) The UNP will be rebuilt shortly so as to offer a majestic leadership to the people of the country with the aim of creating people who will not be subjected to sufferings, UNP National Organizer S.B.Dissanayake said in Kandy this evening (23). He was addressing a crowd of over 5000 people who had flocked to Kandy to welcome him. more..

Govt, Tiger rebels agree to meet again, pledge to halt violence

Feb 24 (AFP) Sri Lanka's government and Tamil Tiger rebels agreed to a new round of talks in April, after breaking the three-year deadlock in their peace process during negotiations in Switzerland. Norwegian peacebroker Erik Solheim told reporters that both sides, who gathered for two days behind closed doors in this village near Geneva, had agreed to meet again here from April 19-21. more..

UNP and JVP want an end to state resources being used for election propaganda

Feb 24 (AT) Two of Sri Lanka's main political parties, the UNP and the JVP have drawn the attention of President Mahinda Rajapakse and Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake towards the need to stop the use of state resources for election propaganda during next month's local government poll. more..

We are now free and no more slaves- Estate workers

Feb 24 (AT) Sri Lankan Estate workers received number of benefits after the privatization of estates and the workers said that they do not need trade unions anymore, commonly called for political middlemen to assist the workers in these estates. more..

Erik Solheim releases statement

Feb 24 (TW) Full Text of Statement released by Erik Solheim, Norwegian Minister of International Development - on behalf of the parties to the Sri Lanka conflict, the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE): more..

Govt expressed satisfaction over the way talks proced in Geneva

Feb 24 (AT) The Government on Thursday expressed its satisfaction over the way the Government and the Liberation Tigers were continuing the ceasefire talks in Geneva. Cabinet Spokesman and Media Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa told the weekly Cabinet press briefing here in Colombo that there were no contradictions between the two parties engaged in talks in Geneva. more..

Govt, rebels, agree to pursue cease-fire talks

Feb 24 (AP) Sri Lankan government negotiators and Tamil Tiger rebels have agreed to resume their cease-fire talks in April and restrain the level of violence, Norwegian mediator Erik Solheim said. Solheim said the two sides agreed during two days of talks that ended on Thursday that they would meet again April 19-21 in Geneva more..

CFA amendments called for

Feb 24 (ANN) Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, at the inauguration of the truce talks in Geneva, minced no words when he said that the CFA (Cease Fire Agreement) was not consistent with the Constitution but that the government had to continue with it as certain benefits had accrued to the people from the truce. more..

Civilians failed to undergo LTTE training ordered to report

Feb 24 (SLA) FOUR MOTORBIKE-RIDING LTTE men on Wednesday (22) at about 11.00 a.m. stormed the POKKANAE hamlet in URELU, JAFFNA and ordered a pocket of civilians to immediately report to the PALAI LTTE office since they had failed to attend training given by the LTTE. more..

Thonda Gets Special Security Over LTTE Threats

Feb 24 (ISL) A new unit of Army commandos will be providing special security for CWC leader Arumugam Thondaman on the direction of President Mahinda Rajapakse. CWC leader had requested the special security arrangements over possible LTTE threats on his life. more..

22 TNA MP’s had done nothing to Tamil community says Douglas Devananda

Feb 24 (ISL) Speaking to more than 200 volunteer teachers from the North and East, Social Services and Social Welfare Minister K.N. Douglas Devananda said that the Tamil National Alliance members are merely puppets of the LTTE and had done nothing to sever the community. more..

SLMC's application against the enjoining order taken up

Feb 24 (LM) An application by the SLMC against the enjoining order issued against the party leader Rauff Hakeem and its Secretary General Hasen Ali was taken up for support in the District Court of Colombo today. President's counsel Mr.Romesh de Silva made submissions on behalf of SLMC leader Rauff Hakeem and President's counsel Mr. Ikram Mohamed made submissions on behalf of Mr. Hasen Ali. more..

These arrangements need not be made and the matter can be discussed over the phone without going to Geneva-TULF Leader

Feb 24 (ISL) “Over two years of continued efforts of the International Community, some heads of Diplomatic Missions, European Union, several Foreign and Local Organisations and the Governments of Sri Lanka and Norway, resulted in the LTTE agreeing to return to the negotiating table. more..

Lion Beer laments shrinking consumption patterns

Feb 24 (LBO) Sri Lanka's Lion Breweries expects dismal final year results for 2005, hit by higher taxes, possible restrictions on alcohol adverts and a growing illicit liquor industry. High excise taxes are blamed for heavy illicit liquor consumption of 627 mn litres a year. more..

People who gave country to Mahinda Rajapakse will give the village to JVP - Wimal Weerawansa

Feb 24 (LT) At a time when Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga as the leader of the SLFP and the party head office kept away from supporting Mr. Mahinda Rajapakse’s election campaign, the JVP shouldered the full burden of the campaign resulting him being elected the President and the same masses who voted for Mr. Mahinda Rajapakse will now definitely hand over the village to the JVP more..

Truce talks end on successful note

Feb 24 (PIS) Truce talks between the Government and the LTTE ended successfully in Celigny, Switzerland yesterday, with both sides agreeing to meet again in mid-April for another round. According to a statement issued by the two sides at the end of the talks, the next round of negotiations will take place for three days - from April 19 to 21 in Geneva. more..