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Dangerous liaisons of Tamilnadu politicians with the LTTE

Jan 12 (ISL) Certain Tamilnadu politicians who have long lost their clout with their electors are being wooed by the LTTE to start active anti-Sri Lankan Government agitation on the Indian soil and even to make that a state election issue. This type of activity is not going to help the Tamils. Indeed it will be counter productive and further prejudice the Sinhalese against them. more..

Bala coming for talks?

Jan 12 (LM) There is speculation that LTTE theoretician Anton Balasingham may arrive in the country later this month to take part in the scheduled talks between the visiting Norwegian Minister Erik Solheim and the LTTE in Kilinochchi. Mr. Solheim is scheduled to arrive in Sri Lanka on January 23 for crucial talks with the government and the LTTE more..

‘Hartal’ in Trinco! Disrupts normal life! An encouragement to Wanni tigers–Jayantha Wijesekera

Jan 12 (LT) A protest against the Wanni tiger led demonstrations held in Trincomalee during the last few days has been started by now in Kantale and Trincomalee. This has been organized by a Sinhalese racist group. It is reported that the transport has come to a stand still and all shops are closed in Kantalai disrupting the normal life in the area. more..

Oppressive conditions in a garment factory

Jan 12 (wsws) Retrenchments and deteriorating working conditions are producing mounting discontent in Sri Lankan garment factories, where about 300,000 workers are employed, mostly women. It is now one year since the January 2005 abolition of the previous international quota system, which gave “developing countries” almost guaranteed shares of the world market. more..

De Mel rejects Sri Lanka return

Jan 12 (C365) Asantha de Mel has rejected the chance to return to his former position as Sri Lanka's chairman of selectors. It had been reported that De Mel had taken over the post, which he held before being sacked last May, with the Minister of Sports and Youth affairs Jeewan Kumaranatunga clearing the appointment. more..

Senior monitor disputes Tigers` right to unrestricted access to sea -UNP MP

Jan 12 (LNP) A Scandinavian truce monitor, in charge of a northern district, on Tuesday disputed the Tigers` right to unrestricted access to sea routes to and from LTTE-held areas and air, UNP MP Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena said. more..

Tigers proved poor liars

Jan 12 (LNP) A Jaffna schoolgirl claimed by the LTTE to have been abducted by the army on Tuesday has been found safe at home, prompting the Ministry of Defence to harshly criticise the Tigers for spreading false propaganda. TamilNet and other LTTE machinery went into overdrive on Tuesday, alleging the abduction of the girl. more..

`We were tortured`

Jan 12 (LNP) Hundreds of women who returned to the country yesterday from detention camps in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, claimed that they had been subjected to torture. They charged that the Sri Lanka Embassy did not return monies they took from them. The women charged they had not been issued receipts for the money taken from them. more..

Indian Textile show at BMICH

Jan 12 (LNP) The Synthetic and Rayon Textile Export Promotion Council (SRTEPC) and the High Commission of India in Colombo are jointly organizing the 4th `Indian Textile Show` in Colombo, at Hall 2 of the BMICH on 11 & 12 January, 2006. The SRTEPC has already held three similar trade shows in Sri Lanka. more..

Indian help for plantation sector education

Jan 12 (DN) President Rajapakse and the Government is keen towards changing the whole concept of the Estate population, with emphasis on educational development. Hence, the plantation trade Unions should make the best use of such opportunities, said Central Provincial Council Minister S. Arulsamy, more..

24 refugees arrive from Sri Lanka

Jan 12 (AFP) For the first time after hostilities broke out between the Sri Lankan Army and Tamil Tiger rebels on Jan 7 off Trincomalee, a batch of 24 refugees from the island nation arrived at Dhanushkodi coast today, a top police official said. The refugees include seven women and nine children. more..

Sri Lanka ratifies SAFTA

Jan 12 (UNI) Sri Lankan cabinet has ratified the South Asia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA). The step follows the submission of a cabinet paper by the Minister of Trade, Commerce, Consumer Affairs and Marketing Development, Jeyaraj Fernandopulle, for the implementation of the regional trade pact. more..

Trincomalee grips Sri Lanka town after violence

Jan 12 (AFP) A strike called by a pro-government group upset over Tamil rebel attacks paralysed Sri Lanka's restive port town of Trincomalee in the island's embattled northeast, police said. Shops and offices were shut in the town, 260 kilometres (160 miles) northeast of Colombo, and few vehicles were on the roads, more..

Sri Lanka pledges not to start war

Jan 12 (AFP) Sri Lanka pledged not to start a war with Tamil rebels despite an escalation of violence and expressed hope that peace broker Norway will salvage a truce with the guerrillas. Government spokesman Nimal Siripala de Silva discounted fears of a return to full-scale war with the deaths of at least 115 people in the past month in attacks blamed mostly on the rebel LTTE. more..

EU rebukes Lanka, praises Indonesia on conflict resolution

Jan 12 (HT) The European Union (EU) has rebuked Sri Lanka for not using the tsunami disaster as an opportunity to settle the Tamil question, and praised Indonesia for using the same disaster to try and settle the conflict in Aceh. more..

Soldiers kill suspected Tamil rebel; 45 civilians killed since Nov. 20: rights group

Jan 12 (AP) Sri Lankan soldiers shot dead a suspected Tamil Tiger rebel in the country's north after the man hurled a grenade at troops manning a military checkpoint, the Defense Ministry said Thursday. Military spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe said one soldier was wounded in Wednesday's unprovoked attack. more..

Mine blast kills nine sailors as Sri Lanka vows no war

Jan 12 (AFP) Suspected Tamil Tiger rebels blew up a navy bus, killing nine sailors in fresh bloodshed as Sri Lanka vowed it will not return to war with the guerrillas. The sailors were returning to their posts after vacation and were travelling in a convoy of several vehicles when they were ambushed, a military official said Thursday, more..

Getty Images

Jan 12 (GI) Sri Lankan activists shout slogans demanding that Tamil Tiger rebels and the Colombo government work towards a peace deal during a rally in Colombo, 12 January 2006. more..

Sri Lanka's north tense after new grenade attack

Jan 12 (Reuters) Four policemen and a soldier were injured in a grenade attack and a youth was shot on Thursday in Sri Lanka's tense, army-held northern enclave of Jaffna as escalating violence stokes fears of renewed civil war. more..

Muralidaran flags 2007 finale

Jan 13 (HS) SRI Lankan spin wizard Muthiah Muralidaran may retire next year, leaving Shane Warne to be Test cricket's leading wicket-taker for at least two decades. Muralidaran, 33, says the impending birth of his first child and the wear and tear of 14 years at the elite level may mean he will quit after the 2007 World Cup. more..

Firing troops 'killed homeguard'

Jan 13 (BBC) Dr. Upul Jayawardena, the medical officer in charge of the Neriyakulam hospital in Vavunia district said that soldiers transporting the wounded to Anuradhapura and Medawachchiya hospitals have opened fire along the road. "I had ordered the transfer of the casualties from the Neriyankulam hospital situated about one Kilometre from the blast scene," more..

Sri Lanka condemns Tamil Rebels for mine attack killing eight sailors

Jan 13 (AP) Sri Lanka's government condemned Tamil Tiger rebels for Thursday's mine attack against a navy convoy in the north that killed at least eight sailors. "We totally condemn this attack," government spokesman and Cabinet minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said. more..

Lanka navy wants cooperation with India

Jan 13 (UPI) The Sri Lankan Navy has proposed cooperation with India against attacks by Tamil rebels. The Indian Express newspaper said Thursday a suicide attack by LTTE Saturday killed 13 Sri Lankan sailors. "We already have experience of working closely with India. We have a hotline system in place for information-sharing. more..

Tamil Journalists 'intimidated'

Jan 13 (BBC) Be it Sinhala – be it Tamil- it's a news paper-keep your hands off", hundreds of journalists shouted in front of the Fort railway station in the capital on Thursday. Several Tamil journalists have been detained and questioned during search operations in Colombo and the suburbs. more..

EROS Nesan Thirunesan commends US Ambassador's staunch warning To LTTE

Jan 13 (ISL) Nesan Thirunesan of Eelam Revolutionary Organisation welcomed the United States Ambassador Jeffrey Lunstead's staunch warning to the LTTE that they must stop its violent activities and return to peace talks. more..

President Rajapakse goes for dribs, drabs and wild shots

Jan 13 (ISL) If the centre forward in a soccer game cannot score his goals when chances come his way, he is either a bad player or gets confused as he nears the goal area or for some reason or other, fritters his chances away. more..

JVP In Arms Against Racist Harthal In Trincomalee

Jan 13 (ISL) JVP had taken a strict stance against the Sinhalese chauvinist Harthal campaign in Trincomalee claiming such Harthal campaigns further help the cause of the LTTE. JVP Parliamentarian Jayantha Weerasekara from Trincomalee is in the forefront against the protest which is allegedly organized by the JHU, more..

Time to take a leaf from the Aceh story

Jan 13 (ISL) As I commemorated the first anniversary of the tsunami on December 26, I was particularly saddened as I considered Sri Lanka’s future – one year on after the terrible wave claimed 30,000 of its people, we may now be witnessing Sri Lanka’s slow but resolute drift back towards civil war. more..

LTTE adopts a new combat strategy in north-eastern Sri Lanka in which its front organisations stage violent attacks on chosen targets

Jan 13 (FL) RECENT developments in the Tamil-majority regions of north-eastern Sri Lanka indicate that the LTTE has embarked upon a fresh, multi-pronged combative strategy against the government headed by President Mahinda Rajapakse. more..

An air of apprehension

Jan 13 (FL) 2005 ended on a violent note for Sri Lanka, the focus of the island-nation was largely fixed on the first state visit to India by newly elected President Mahinda Rajapakse. Sri Lankans hold a myriad of expectations for the new year. But the outlook appears gloomy. Continued killings have made a mockery of the 2002 ceasefire agreement. more..

For that old magic

Jan 13 (FL) RADIO CEYLON, once the favourite of listeners across the Indian subcontinent, turned 80 on December 16, 2005. Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), as it is now called, is but a shadow of its former self. A few days into 2006, an old Tamil film song wafts through the skies courtesy of SLBC's Tamil service. more..

An iconic anchor

Jan 13 (FL) S. SARAVANAMUTTU represents a legion of broadcasters who were icons in the era of the romance of the radio. Popularly known as `Radio Mama' and then as `Vanoli Mama', Saravanamuttu is proud of his past. He lives in a quiet cul-de-sac at Wellawatte - the Tamil-majority pocket of Colombo. more..

No more tears sister – A must for Sri Lankans

Jan 13 (ISL) In era where Sri Lankans have locked their eyes infront of worthless Hindi movies, a movie of No More Tears Sister is ideal to make a change in the intellectual potential of all Sri Lankans. This is a definite eye opener for the Sri Lankan society which today is polarized between ultra Sinhalese and Tamil nationalist movements. more..

TRO recruits Tamil youth abroad and ships them to Vanni

Jan 13 (AT) Expatriate Tamil youth who volunteered to work for the tsunami victims in the Vanni have returned with tales of being introduced to (1) Prabhakaran and (2) to arms and ammunition during their short stay. They were recruited by the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) – a front organisation of the LTTE set up collect monies from the Tamil expatriates. more..

Jaffna University to be closed before launching the final war

Jan 13 (AT) Tamil Tigers are making secret arrangements to force the closure of the Jaffna University, sources close to the University student population said. According to a plan conceived by the LTTE, it is reliably learnt that the Jaffna University would remain closed until the iruthip pore, the ultimate war, against the Sri Lnka army was over once and for all. more..

Double standards in the global war on terror

Jan 13 (CNA) SINCE the election of Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse last November, the West's double standards in the global fight against terrorism have been exposed. Immediately following the narrow poll victory of Mr Rajapakse on Nov 17, the Western media dubbed him a "hardline" nationalist. more..

UNP protests against arrests

Jan 13 (LT) UNP opposes people being arrested in their homes for not having identity cards. The party doesn’t object to the security programme but opposed people being harassed said Mr. Tissa Attanayake, Deputy Secretary General of the UNP at a media meeting held in Colombo yesterday. more..

Govt. expects to start peace process with new approach - Nimal Siripala de Silva

Jan 13 (LT) The Government believes that peace process could be started with a new approach after Erik Solheim, Norwegian special envoy arrives in Sri Lanka. He is expected to arrive in Sri Lanka next week and will have discussions with the Government as well as the tiger organization. He will have to pay his attention to the present conflicting situation. more..

President told military not to provoke Tiger rebels

Jan 13 (ANN) President Mahinda Rajapakse has instructed the armed forces not to provoke the Tamil Tiger rebels into aggression and to act only in self defence. Cabinet spokesman and Health Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva told yesterday’s Cabinet press briefing that the government does not want to wage war with the LTTE and President Rajapakse has told the armed forces so. more..

ICICI Bank forays into Sri Lanka

Jan 13 (Hindu) ICICI Bank on Thursday started operations in Sri Lanka, its 12th location outside India. One of the bank's focus areas would be to tap the non-resident Sri Lankan's needs, leveraging upon its success in India where it holds a 20 per cent share of the $20 billion remittances market. more..

Sri Lanka's largest hydro-electricity reservoir spills after nine-years

Jan 13 (LBO) The largest storage reservoir in the Sri Lankan hydro – electrical generation system spilled early Friday morning, for the first time sicne 1997, a Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) official said. Storage capacity in all reservoirs in the CEB system also topped the 1000 GigaWatthours (GWh) – enough water to generate one-billion units of electricity – for the first time in seven-years. more..

Six Tigers killed and seven injured in the East

Jan 13 (AT) In two separate incidents in the East of Sri Lanka, six Tamil Tigers and an EPRLF cadre were reported to be killed this morning. In one incident, according to sources in the East, cadres belonging to TamilEela Makkal Viduthalai Munnai of Colonel Karuna, penetrated deep into the Tiger controlled area in the Kanchikudichchan Aru in the Amparai district more..

'Sunday Leader' editor appeals security from IGP

Jan 13 (LeN) Sunday Leader editor Lasantha Wickramathunaga send a letter to police chief Chandra Fernando and sought immediate police security alleging that there was a grave threat to his life from President Mahinda Rajapaksha. His letter as follows.... more..

Exodus of civilians causes concern

Jan 13 (LM) A serious humanitarian crisis is developing with the exodus of Tamil civilians being reported from Government-controlled areas both in the north and the east, fearing retaliation from the security forces in the light of several claymore mine attacks against them. more..

President instructs the IGP to implement an islandwide public security programme

Jan 13 (SLBC) A special public security programme will be implemented islandwide. IGP Chandra Fernando says this security plan will be carried out methodically under the directions of president Mahinda Rajapakse. The IGP stated this after engaging in religious observances at Katharagama. more..

World Press Freedom Day is celebrated in Sri Lanka

Jan 13 (SLBC) The Ministry of Information and Media says UNESCO has decided to hold this year?s world Press Freedom Day in Sri Lanka. Secretary to the Ministry W.B. Ganegala says preparations have been made to hold this event on the 30th of April and the 1st of May at the BMICH Colombo. more..

EROS claims that ‘Tamil Tiger Air force’ is ready to launch attacks on the Govt's armed forces as ludicrous

Jan 13 (ISL) In a statement today EROS Nesan, the son of Shankar Raji stated that Col. Bahnu’s claims that the LTTE have an Air Force are both ludicrous and hilarious. “I find it insane for him to make such a remark. Are the Tigers going to use their micro-light aircrafts to strike the GOSL’s fleet of advanced fighter aircraft’? more..

LTTE misinformation continues unabated on

Jan 13 (ISL) Despite the ruling given by the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission claiming that the LTTE charges of the Kondavil abduction as groundless, the LTTE mouthpiece carried a new report repeating the claims that the girl had indeed been forcefully taken by the Army citing “civilian” sources. more..

UPF furious over Indian allegations

Jan 13 (SAMN) The Upcountry People’s Front (UPF) claimed yesterday that Indian authorities had alleged that a Tamil journalist who accompanied President Mahinda Rajapakse on his tour to India was a threat to the President’s security because of the journalist’s suspected links with the LTTE. more..

President denies editor’s charge

Jan 13 (SAMN) Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickrematunge yesterday sought immediate police security alleging that there was a grave threat to his life from President Mahinda Rajapakse — but the President last night flatly denied the charge. more..