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Sri Lanka dismiss suicide truck bombing fears

Jan 15 (PTI) Sri Lankan police today discounted reports in the local media that Tamil Tiger rebels were planning a suicide truck bomb attack against a landmark building in the capital. Colombo's police chief Pujith Jayasundera, said there was no specific threat against any economic target and the authorities are maintaining the same level of security they had in place several weeks ago. more..

President raise spiritual storm at Kerala temple: report

Jan 15 (PTI) Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapakse's visit to the Guruvayur temple in Kerala had led to a costly spiritual blunder that violated the sanctity of the shrine, a press report here said today. more..

Sri Lanka plans new security force for capital

Jan 15 (AFP) Sri Lanka plans a new security force in the capital to deal with possible attacks as concern grows for a fragile ceasefire with separatist Tamil Tiger rebels, police said. Heavily-armed troops and police have been visible in the city of 650,000 in recent weeks, more..

Guruvayur temple clarifies stand on Rajapakse's visit

Jan 16 (PTI) Mahinda Rajapakse's wife was allowed to enter the temple, where the entry is restricted to those in the pan-Hindu fold, based on information provided by the officials concerned that she was a Singhalese Buddhist. more..

Race for UN Chief heats up in diplomatic circle

Jan 16 (KT) While the race to succeed Secretary-General Kofi Annan is underway, the foreign diplomatic corps electioneering in Seoul for the world's top diplomat has begun in earnest. The world is debating whether the next U.N. diplomat-in-chief should be a woman or come from Asia or Eastern Europe. How things will unfold is anyone's guess. more..

Thousands flee Jaffna expecting war

Jan 16 (HT) About 3,500 families have fled from Jaffna peninsula to the LTTE-controlled part of the Wanni towards the south, expecting an outbreak of hostilities between the Sri Lankan armed forces and the LTTE, sources in Jaffna said on Sunday. more..

Sri Lankan leaders call for moves to check violence

Jan 16 (Xinhua) Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayake and the main opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe expressed serious concern on Sunday over the escalating rate of violence in the north and east of the country. Wickramanayake addressing a public function, urged the LTTE rebels to adhere to the Norwegian backed cease-fire. more..

Govt cannot be cowed - Mangala Samaraweera

Jan 16 (LT) If tiger organization thought they could get the government to agree to their demands by scaring it and murdering members of armed forces it would be a futile exercise emphasizes Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera. Minister Samaraweera said the Government will never be cowardly. more..

Yahoo Photos

Jan 16 (AP) Navy sailors pay their last respects for Petty Officer Dharmasiri Gunathilaka, one of the nine navy officer killed in an attack by suspected Tamil Tigers, during his funeral in Colombo more..

Solheim expected come out of Vanni with more demands than peace

Jan 16 (AT) Erik Solheim is due in Sri Lanka on January 23 to move forward the peace process, according to a Norwegian press release. The press release quotes him as saying: "I am deeply concerned about the recent increase in violence in Sri Lanka," said Mr Solheim. more..

Abuse of Sri Lanka women in the Middle East

Jan 16 (AT) Ministry of Labor and Foreign Employment do not possess the complete details of the number Sri Lankan women working in the Middle East despite complains of abuse inundates the Ministry. The latest details available with the Ministry were that of the 2003 figures. more..

Sri Lanka and the LTTE

Jan 16 (AT) "The democratic freedom of expression Mr Gnanakone enjoys in the USA has enabled him to be highly critical of the US government's foreign policy. Sadly and tragically such freedom is denied to the thousands of peace loving Tamils living under the LTTE," points out Dr. W.Y. Rambukwelle more..

Sri Lanka may keep key interest rate unchanged to spur growth

Jan 16 (Bloomberg) Central bank will probably keep its benchmark interest rate unchanged to help the island's continued recovery from the Dec. 2004 tsunami. The Central Bank will leave the repurchase rate at which it drains money from the banking system at 8.75 percent and maintain the reverse repurchase rate at 10.25 percent, more..

Tamil civilians readied to become gun fodder

Jan 16 (ISL) News reports flowing out from North Sri Lanka are cause for great alarm and worry. While it is evident there is a great deal of distortion from some sources that are heavily entombed in Jaffna like the pro-LTTE dailies of the peninsula, what is clear is that there are elements in this region determined to whip up a violent confrontation between the Tamil civilians of the north and the Armed Forces. more..

Defy Pol Pot Prabhakaran and seek a solution

Jan 16 (ISL) Whether Oslo moves or Colombo acts or whoever tries to ensure some kind of rapport is achieved between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE, there is not going to be any acceptable agreement that will help to bring about a peaceful resolution. Time and again, the LTTE has proved that it can never be trusted and they simply do not want a solution. more..

Jaffna women banned from interacting with Army by LTTE

Jan 16 (ISL) Two young women residents of in Manipay Jaffna district were shot dead early this morning by LTTE agents in Jaffna. The family members of her family sustained injuries and were later admitted to the Jaffna Teaching Hospital for treatments. The girls were killed for allegedly interacting with Army members in Jaffna, according to civilians. more..

Death and funeral of Uthayan newspaper in Jaffna

Jan 16 (ISL) Once a prestigious newspaper from Jaffna, today had become mire third class propaganda machinery for the LTTE. The story of Uthayan tells the pathetic reality existing in the Tamil media today. In its latest editorial which was proudly quoted in many LTTE web sites, Uthayan newspaper says that the Army is harassing the people for the crimes of “somebody else”. more..

Controversy over Guruvayur temple entry and Sri Lanka's First Lady

Jan 16 (AT) Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapakse’s four day official visit to India has plagued him with too many controversies. The latest in the series was the entry into the Guruvayur Lord Krishna Temple’s holy sanctum by Sri Lanka’s First Lady - Shiranthi Rajapakse. more..

Unprovoked LTTE assaults on troops continue injuring more & more

Jan 16 (SLA) UNPROVOKED ASSAULTS OF TAMIL TIGER (LTTE) terrorists against members of the Armed Forces, Policemen and civilians continued to be the order of the day during the whole of Sunday (15) too as numbers of the affected were soaring. more..

Private bus driver found dead

Jan 16 (SLA) Following information received by the Police on Sunday (15), Naval troops assisted by the KAYTS Police recovered a bullet- riddled dead body of a man, confirmed to be that of a 29-year old private bus driver. The victim, DHARMARASA RDHARMASEELAN (29) of KAYTS was found dead with gunshot injuries near the KAYTS Magistrate Court more..

JVP Silent Over Army Brutality

Jan 16 (ISL) The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna members, who were victimized by countless abuses by the security forces members during the late eighties are now deliberately ignoring the human rights abuses committed by the Navy and Army against the Tamils in Northeast. more..

Tigers Re-enter Canadian Scene In Different Stripes

Jan 16 (ISL) The name Canadian Tamil Congress brings to mind the All Ceylon Tamil Congress which in 1948 helped to disfranchise thousands of Tamils from the tea and rubber plantation districts of Sri Lanka. This was the first step in racial discrimination which has today brought the Sri Lankan ethnic crisis to a ghastly outcome. more..

Oil lobbies out for my blood - Power Boss

Jan 16 (WS) Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) General Manager Ranjith Fonseka who was served a charge sheet on November 25, 2005 by former Power and Energy Ministry Secretary P.Weerahandi yesterday claimed that a 'certain group was conspiring against him because he was not supportive of oil fired power plants.' more..

Tiger cadres take refuge in estates

Jan 16 (WS) The police intelligence have received information that LTTE hardcore cadres are in disguise as estate workers in Matale, Kandy and Nuwara-Eliya districts. Further investigations revealed that the LTTE members have come to these districts because of search operations conducted in Colombo. more..

LTTE wants Tamils to come to their areas

Jan 16 (WS) The LTTE leadership has requested Tamil civilians living in certain areas of the Trincomalee district to take refuge in areas under their control. Already several thousands of Tamils from Trincomalee, Jaffna and Muttur have begun to influx LTTE administered Vanni and other areas under Tiger control. The LTTE has however not given any reasons for their declaration. more..

Broad Tamil alliance proving to be a flop

Jan 16 (WS) Negative signs continued to emerge from the proposed 'broad based Tamil alliance' following continuous attacks against the Ceylon Workers Congress which was attempting to spearhead the alliance. Western Peoples Front (WPF) leader Mano Ganesan told the Weekend Standard that it was nearly two weeks since the three parties were supposed to meet but to date no such meeting has taken place. more..

Asgiriya Anunayake blames JVP for security situation

Jan 16 (LM) At a meeting with Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe, the Anunayake of the Asgiri Chapter, Venerable Galagama Sri Attadassi Thera said that he was deeply moved over the killing of security personnel in large numbers during the past few weeks. Cadres getting back to their camps are killed by landmines set by Tigers, he said. more..

Govt., UNP groups meet today

Jan 16 (LM) The government and opposition Parliamentary Groups will meet at two separate venues today to discuss the peace process, Thursday's All Party Conference and matters relating to the Ceasefire Agreement. President Mahinda Rajapakse will chair the Government Parliamentary Group meeting scheduled to be held at Temple Trees at 5 pm more..

Col Karuna's condemns LTTE attack on Norwegian Peace Monitors: Against Tamil rules of war

Jan 16 (AT) A statement issued by TamilEeela Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal (TMVP) has strongly condemned the attack on the SLMM office located at Lake Road, in Batticoloa on the night of January 13. The statement also said that this is an attempt by Prabhakaran to turn the east also into a bloody battle field like the north. more..

Sri Lanka may decide on incinerator to end garbage crisis

Jan 16 (AT) The seven member committee appointed by President Mahinda Rajapakse to devise an acceptable solution to the ongoing garbage crisis and is expected to finalize their report by mid next month. The committee is headed by Provincial Councils and Local Government Minister Janaka Bandara Tennakoon, and includes three Mayors and two other Ministers. more..

Most important task is to commence peace talks - Ranil Wickremasinghe

Jan 16 (LT) The most important task before the country today is to commence peace talks said Leader of the Opposition Mr. Ranil Wickremasinghe. Mr. Wickremasinghe made this observation participating at a meeting of a UNP electoral reorganization session at Thamankaduwa in Polonnaruwa. more..

Floods as tanks spill over

Jan 16 (SAMN) SEVERAL reservoirs and tanks spilled over during the last few days causing minor floods and disrupting road traffic in the wake of torrential rains which lashed many parts of the country. The most significant of these is the spill over of the Parakrama Samudraya in Polonnaruwa which cut off traffic between Polonnaruwa and Batticaloa. more..

Burns, Solheim to meet next week

Jan 16 (SAMN) The US Under Secretary for Political Affairs R. Nicholas Burns will meet Norwegian special envoy Eric Solheim in Colombo next week. Burns and Solheim will discuss the current state of the ceasefire agreement and the resumption of the peace process. more..

Mysterious death of employee reveals sex ring in hotel

Jan 16 (LNP) An investigation into the death of an 18-year-old hotel employee has revealed the existence of a ring that may have supplied youth including employees to foreigners seeking sex. W. S. Harsha Kumara, following a course at the Golden Star Beach in Negombo, was dragged out of the hotel`s swimming pool but was pronounced dead on admission to the Negombo government hospital. more..

Ranil tells JVP to explain what `honourable peace` means

Jan 16 (LNP) Opposition Leader, Ranil Wickremesinghe challenged the JVP to explain to the people the meaning of 'honourable peace' they had pledged to bring and how they could use their so called 'honourable peace' to stop land mine explosion and the distraction of army personnel. more..

Govt to import gas maybe laughing gas, not LPG

Jan 16 (LNP) Government moves to import gas to combat a possible shortage, expected within the next fortnight, was yesterday criticized by the Laufgs Gas Company as being ineffective and insisted, price reduction was impossible as 'cheaper LPG imports is a myth.' more..

Sri Lanka to woo wealthy Indian tourists

Jan 16 (PTI) Sri Lanka will launch a campaign to woo Indian tourists to spend their summer vacation in the country, as the tropical island struggles to fill up hotel rooms that remain largely empty following the tsunami disaster. more..

Sri Lanka seek improved batting

Jan 16 (BBC) Sri Lanka coach Tom Moody says his team will take a more attacking batting approach against South Africa in the VB Series on Tuesday. Sri Lanka lost their first match to Australia by 116 runs. This was in no small part due to number three batsman Michael Vandort hitting a painstaking 48 off 117 balls. more..

Special insurance scheme for migrant workers

Jan 16 (SLBC) A special insurance scheme for the Sri Lankans working in Jordan is to be introduced shortly. The decision has been arrived at considering the difficulties faced by Sri Lankan migrant workers. The minister of labour relations and foreign employment has already submitted a set of proposals on the insurance scheme to the JOrdan government. more..

School Twinning Project to improve English education

Jan 16 (DN) COOPERATION between Elementary Schools - The Netherlands and Sri Lanka mainly to teach English Language to children in both countries will be set up shortly in Sri Lanka and The Netherlands. Ms. Tineke van Duijn, Coordinator School Twinning Project and her husband Arie van Duijn are in Sri Lanka making arrangements to set up the School Twinning Project. more..

Sri Lankan air force checkpoint attacked

Jan 16 (AP) Suspected Tamil Tiger rebels hurled a grenade at an air force checkpoint, wounding an airman, military officials said Monday as rising violence threatened to plunge Sri Lanka back into civil war. The assailants fled after throwing the grenade in northeastern Sri Lanka Sunday night, and the wounded airman was hospitalized, more..

Three women gunned down in Sri Lanka ahead of peace moves

Jan 16 (AFP) Three women relatives of a Tamil Tiger rebel were shot dead by unidentified attackers in northern Sri Lanka ahead of fresh diplomatic moves to save a troubled truce, officials said. The three women were shot dead in the Jaffna peninsula from where hundreds of families linked to the guerrillas have fled, fearing reprisals in the wake of growing ethnic violence. more..

IRA Chief negotiator & former guerilla head comes SL

Jan 16 (LeN) The chief negotiator of Sinn Fein, the political party of the former Irish rebel group Irish Republican Army (IRA), will arrive in the country this week for talks with government and LTTE leaders to discuss methods of strengthening the peace process. more..

Sri Lanka killings continue, peace envoys awaited

Jan 16 (Reuters) Two men were shot dead in eastern Sri Lanka on Monday in violence ahead of visits by U.S. and Norwegian envoys trying to halt a slide back to civil war between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels. On Friday, Nordic truce monitors questioned whether the 2002 ceasefire that halted two decades of fighting still held. more..

Yahoo Photos

Jan 16 (Reuters) Tamil Tiger rebels hold their weapons as they celebrate the 'Thai Pongal' festival at a rebels military training college in Vanni, northern Sri Lanka January 13, 2006. 'Thai Pongol' is celebrated as a harvest festival. more..

Sri Lanka military finds mines in north

Jan 16 (Xinhua) Sri Lankan Army said on Monday that two deadly claymore mines had been recovered from the northern Jaffna peninsula. Officials said the two mines each weighing about 10 kg were found at Kodikamam area in Jaffna on the Varani Road. more..

A programme to protect turtles gets underway

Jan 17 (SLBC) The Wild Life Conservation Department has embarked on a programme to protect turtles. A beach patrol will be effective to prevent stealing of turtle eggs. Director General of the department Dayananda Kariyawasam says five species of turtles that are facing extinction come to lay eggs along the coastal stretch from Bundala to Tangalle. more..

UNP to implement reforms

Jan 17 (Xinhua) United National Party (UNP) said Monday that the party would implement a series of reforms leading towards the further strengthening of its national standing. Party officials said that its parliamentary group which met here on Monday had adopted a set of party reforms one of which was to create a position of Executive Chairman. more..

Probe on Chandrika's land offer

Jan 17 (BBC) The Court of Appeal in Sri Lanka has granted leave to proceed on a petition against providing a special perks to former President Chandrika Kumaratunga. This is the first time that courts in Sri Lanka has decided to probe an allegation against a former executive president of the country. more..

Annan calls for cease-fire in Sri Lanka

Jan 17 (Xinhua) UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan urged parties in Sri Lanka on Monday to stop conflicts and resume peace talks, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said. In a statement released by the spokesman, Annan said he is very concerned about the deteriorating security situation in Sri Lanka, and deplores the attack on Saturday on the facilities of the SLMM. more..