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First gem land auction a success

May 12 (SAMN) The Government earned Rs.27.6 million by auctioning the Gemming rights of 49, 10 perch blocks of the Paradise estate Kuruwita. The Auction organized by the National Gem and Jewellery Authority was held at the BOI Auditorium in the Seethawakapura Industrial Park. more..

Public help sought to identify woman suicide bomber

May 12 (DN) The picture No.1 is the side view photograph of the suicide bomber taken after the blast at Army Headquarters on April 25. The image marked No.2 gives her appearance as described by eye-witnesses in the course of investigations. According to the witnesses, she was approximately five feet three inches tall, 35 to 40 years of age and tan in complexion. more..

Tamil Nadu verdict not to impact Sri Lanka

May 12 (IANS) The victory of the DMK-led alliance in Tamil Nadu is not expected to have any impact on Sri Lanka unless war erupts in the island and Tamil refugees flee to the Indian state in large numbers. Sri Lanka watchers, security officials and political sources in Chennai say there will be no change in the stand of the DMK, once a shrill supporter of Tamil Eelam more..

India not too keen to up its Sri Lanka profile

May 12 (IANS) The influential co-chairs to Sri Lanka's peace process want India to get more actively involved in efforts to bring peace to the island, but New Delhi is unlikely to take up the offer. Yasushi Akashi, Japan's special envoy to Sri Lanka, formally made the request here Thursday in separate meetings with National Security Adviser M.K. Narayanan and Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran. more..

Indian help sought to escort ‘Pearl Cruiser’ safely to KKS

May 12 (TW) The Sri Lankan navy vessel ”MV Pearl Cruiser” with 710 security personnel on board that was targetted by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on May 11th in northern waters has reached Kankesanthurai (KKS) safely on May 12th after an “eventful” experience said informed defence sources in Colombo. more..

Tensions rise as Muthur East gets shelling again

May 12 (TW) Coastal areas of Muthur East that are controlled by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were targets of intensive atillery and shelling by land and sea again on May 11th. Virtually all the areas that were attacked on April 25th and 26th were attacked again. The small mercy being that aerial bombardment was not done this time. more..

Sea Tigers: Sri Lanka's deadly foes

May 12 (AFP) Sri Lanka's truce prevents Tiger rebels from venturing out to sea, but "Sea Tiger" sailors are openly defying the ban and testing the resolve of the government and Nordic peace monitors, officials say. The LTTE sparked a fresh row over their right to operate their deadly Sea Tiger naval force following Thursday's sinking of a Sri Lankan navy gunboat. more..

Keeping access to sea prompts Tamil Tiger attacks on navy, analyst says

May 12 (AP) Tamil rebels, who earlier this week sank a Sri Lankan navy patrol boat, view access to the sea that supplies their clandestine operations as so vital they will risk a renewed civil war, a top defense analyst said Friday. Nearly all of the guns, ammunition, medical supplies and fuel that sustain the LTTE and the civilians under their control in the rebel-held territories of Sri Lanka's north and east are smuggled by sea, more..

Sri Lanka's rebels vow to retaliate if navy disrupts activity near their territory

May 12 (AP) Tamil rebels warned Friday they will attack Sri Lankan navy vessels that approach coastal areas under their control, a day after they sank a patrol boat in a major sea battle that killed dozens and pushed the country closer to all-out war. The LTTE also issued a final warning to European cease-fire monitors not to board such vessels. more..

Sri Lanka rebels threaten monitors after naval clash

May 12 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels have told Nordic truce monitors they travel aboard navy ships at their peril after the worst military confrontation since a 2002 truce halted two decades of civil war. A flotilla of rebel boats attacked a transport ship carrying hundreds of servicemen on Thursday and sank a navy fast-attack vessel. more..

Tamil Tigers accuse Nordic peace monitors after sea battle

May 12 (AFP) Tamil Tiger rebels have accused Scandinavian truce monitors of protecting Sri Lanka's navy, a day after one of the country's bloodiest sea battles punched another hole in a tenuous ceasefire. Sri Lanka's government condemned the attack against a naval convoy escorting some 700 soldiers and said the international community must now "look at the Tigers in a different light." more..

Chithra Paruvam: First full moon of the Tamil New Year

May 13 (TW) I guess the first full moon day of a New Year, will be an ideal time to reflect on the previous year’s actions and correct our wrong doings. This will help us to check our character and correct it, if need be. Our forefathers have chosen the Chithra Paruvam as the ideal day for this purpose. more..

LTTE claims sovereignty over land, sea and air

May 13 (HT) The LTTE has claimed sovereignty over the land, sea and air in that part of the Sri Lankan North and East, which it controls de facto. "Nobody has the right to pass judgement on the sovereign rights of our access to the adjacent sea and airspace of our homelands," the head of the LTTE's political wing, SP Tamilselvan, told Maj Gen Ulf Ericsson, the head of the Nordic truce monitors, more..

Tiger Harthal ends due to lack of support

May 13 (ISL) The Trinco Harthal organized by the Pongu Tamil organization of the LTTE in response to condemn the LTTE defined 'genocides' and 'extra - judicial killings' against the Tamils came to an end due to lack of public cooperation, sources from the East added. Several pro-LTTE paramilitaries had warned against Tamils who do not cooperate with LTTE Harthal, more..

Ranil speaks at Harvard on Peace Process

May 13 (ISL) Mr. Ranil Wickremesinge, former Prime Minister of Sri Lanka is currently is on a Visit to Harvard – MIT, in the USA. He had several meetings in prestigious institutions such as the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard Law School and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He has been invited to speak in these institutes considering the contribution he made to the peace process in Sri Lanka. more..

Sri Lanka's war in all but name

May 13 (BBC) Europeans have a rather quaint tradition of telling everyone when they intend to go to war. That's why so many of them are now asking the burning question: "Can the ceasefire in Sri Lanka survive the latest violence between the government and the Tamil Tiger rebels?" But to ask the question is to miss the point. more..

SLMM ruling: Tigers seek explanation

May 13 (BBC) The Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka have urged an explanation from the international truce monitors on their latest ruling over Tigers’ right over sea and air. The LTTE statement issued on Friday has strongly condemned the statement by SLMM. The truce monitors on Thursday have reinstated their earlier ruling that the LTTE rebels have no right over sea and air. more..

Rebels on 'Exit Strategy' from peace process, Sri Lanka Gov't says

May 13 (Kyodo) Sri Lanka's government accused the country's Tamil Tiger rebels on Friday of "pursuing an exit strategy from the peace process," a day after the worst fighting between government forces and the rebels since a 2002 cease-fire agreement left 17 Sri Lanka Navy personnel and an estimated 50 rebels dead. more..

Mahmood and Pietersen leave Sri Lanka in tatters

May 13 (CI) Kevin Pietersen produced a dazzling century to propel England into an impregnable position in the first Test at Lord's, then it was over to Sajid Mahmood to mark his debut in stunning fashion with three wickets in his first four overs. Coupled with Matthew Hoggard's incisive new-ball burst and Paul Collingwood's composed half-century, England's powerful display has left Sri Lanka staring at a heavy defeat more..

Construction Industry Expo 2006 - to enhance capacities and competitiveness of the domestic construction industry

May 13 (AT) The construction industry in Sri Lanka is seriously disturbed as it encounters two major debacles – the severe scarcity of river sand and the dearth of skilled labour and to vitiate these debacles the Chamber of Construction Industry Sri Lanka (CCI) is hard at finding solutions. more..

Launch of a livelihood program for the tsunami victims

May 13 (AT) A less number of government and Non-Government agencies who are interest in the tsunami rehabilitation and livelihood development process have agreed to provide their maximum support to the Divisional Secretaries of the tsunami- affected areas to implement a number of self employment projects including entrepreneurship development. more..

Annan calls on Government, Tamil rebels to return to peace talks after clashes

May 13 (UN) United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today called on the Sri Lankan Government and the rebel LTTE to “change course and bring the country back on a path to peace” following a continuing upsurge of violence. Mr. Annan said he was disturbed by latest news of major sea and aerial attacks, including an attack on a vessel that had unarmed international monitors on board, more..

Delhi fiddles while Lanka burns

May 13 (DNA) The attack on the Sri Lankan Navy by the Sea Tigers is the latest blow to fragile peace process in the island. The situation is fast deteriorating and war clouds are looming large over the island. Yet India, the biggest country in the region and Lanka’s closest neighbour is sitting pretty. Violence in the island invariably affects India, with hundreds of refugees pouring into the southern states of Tamil Nadu, more..

SC directs to look into resettlement of the displaced

May 13 (TW) The Supreme Court last Monday directed that immediate steps be taken to interview the persons who had indicated their willingness to re-settle in their properties located within the “Palaly High Security Zone” on the conditions that had been laid down by Court in order to be satisfied of their bona fides. more..

US says Tiger violence poses war risk to Sri Lanka

May 13 (Reuters) The United States on Friday condemned an attack on a Sri Lankan naval vessel by separatist Tamil Tigers, warning the violence risked returning the South Asian island nation to civil war."We are deeply concerned about the escalating violence by the Tamil Tigers, which has put Sri Lanka at risk of a return to war," said a statement by Richard Boucher, more..

If there is trouble in the ranks Ranatunga will have something to say

May 13 (GU) Long before Sri Lanka's batting crumpled their most renowned streetfighter Arjuna Ranatunga had made his excuses and left to watch his daughter in a game of rounders. For the man who 10 years ago astutely turned a group of deferential cricketers into World Cup winners, England's supremacy had become unbearable. more..

The terrible to the horrible

May 13 (TW) If what the Tamils in Sri Lanka have experienced in the past is called ‘ Terrible’ (unpleasant, nasty and very bad), what is in store for them in the future is bound to be ‘Horrible’ (shocking, dislikeable, very unpleasant, very fearful and full of worry and sadness), unless drastic remedial action is instituted immediately. more..

European Union calls rebel attack on Sri Lankan navy "reckless"

May 13 (AP) The European Union has called a Tamil rebel attack on a Sri Lankan navy convoy a reckless move that puts the future of peace talks in serious jeopardy. The warnings follow a spectacular sea battle Thursday in which rebel suicide boats rammed and sank a navy patrol craft. The apparent main target, a troop carrier with 710 soldiers, escaped unharmed. more..

Divisive aims and damaging acts endanger the future of Sri Lankan Tamil community

May 13 (TW) A sustained and unrelenting campaign of fuelling ethnic hostility towards the Sinhalese people and creating distrust and animosity against Sinhalese political leaders and parties is the ploy that the LTTE uses to project its own image as the ’sole liberator’ of the Tamil people and maintain its position as their ’sole representative’. more..

Another Home Guard Killed

May 13 (SLA) A HOME GUARD attached to the PADAVIYA Police station was shot dead by an unidentified group of men on 10th May 2006 while he was off duty resting at his resident around 7.45 p.m. Police recovered the bullet-ridden body of H.G. Wijeratne (49) father of three children lying alone in his resident at No. 138, GRAVELKANDA, PADAVIYA. more..

Suspected LTTE Men Fire Grenades At Villagers

May 13 (SLA) A SUSPECTED GROUP OF LTTE men from un cleared areas closer to ABHAYAPURA border village in TRINCOMALEE district fired two rounds of 40mm grenades aiming destruction on innocent civilians in ABHAYAPURA village Yesterday (11) around 8.45 p.m. No injuries or damages were reported in the incident. The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) was informed.

LTTE Continue Destruction Of Public Property

May 13 (SLA) POLICE PERSONNEL ON ROUTINE DUTIES at the PETHALAI police post in KALKUDA, BATTICALOA received a rain of bullets by Tamil Tigers (LTTE) in hiding Yesterday (11) around 6.10 p.m. LTTE further directed the same volume of fire to the nearby transformer destroying it completely and vacated the area before security force searches commenced.

Home Guard Succumbed To Injuries

May 13 (SLA) TWO HOME GUARDS on duty at the DADAYANTHAWALA police road block in AMPARA were severely injured when an unidentified person mingled with civilians suspected to be from LTTE threw a hand Grenade at them Yesterday (11) around 7.45 p.m. The injured were immediately evacuated to the base hospital AMPARA and Home Guard W. Rohitha succumbed to his injuries on admission to the hospital.

Arugam Bay, 16 months on - The recovery continues

May 13 (GSN) A team of 6 surfers from the UK representing Surf Relief UK and Christian Surfers UK have just returned from another visit to Arugam Bay on the East Coast of Sri Lanka. The purpose of the visit was to check the progress of the projects currently sponsored by Surf Relief UK and Christian Surfers UK more..

Let’s be courageous! Defeat terrorism! Establish democracy throughout Sri Lanka – JVP

May 13 (LT) “Sri Lanka is at the threshold of a decisive juncture of its history. On one hand terrorists have intensified their attacks against the security personnel and general public and on the other there is a conspiracy being hatched to divide the country and hand over Elam to tiger terrorists by attempting to bring down foreign forces declaring that Sri Lanka was a ‘failed state.’ more..

Col. Soosai joins the chorus: We are not prepared to relinquish sovereign rights to the seas

May 13 (AT) Colonel Soosai, Special Commander of the Sea Tigers categorically stated that the LTTE “is not prepared to relinquish sovereign rights to the seas which we have won with the sacrifice of our people." “We have openly established our control, and have unequivocally asserted our rights to maritime waters adjoining our homeland, in the same way we recovered and control large areas of northeast.” more..

Anandasangaree presents his case for a federal solution

May 13 (AT) In a letter addressed to Mahinda Rajapakse, President of Sri Lanka, V. Anandasangaree, Leader of the Tamil United Liberation Front has pointed out that no one, including the European Union as well as the international community “would accept any solution under a unitary system as a reasonable one,” as put forward by the Sri Lanka President. more..

Coconut growers urge VAT on marketing oil and copra removed

May 13 (AT) The Coconut Growers Association of Sri Lanka (CGASL) representing growers of one of the major financial crops has written to the Treasury to remove VAT currently imposed on marketing coconut oil and copra because of the dclining price of Rs 9 per coconut prevailing in the market now due to glut in production indicating that this the finest chance to revive the dying coconut oil production. more..

Ratawatte to be placed in charge of civilian military training

May 13 (LeN) 'Lanka e News' has reliably learns that the government is getting ready for major military offensive while engaging in an attempt to revive the Geneva talks. As a part of this program, civilians are to be provided with military training to form a civil security brigade. It is reported that former Deputy Defence Minister General Anurudda Rawatte is to be placed in charge of this project. more..

LTTE attacks on Vesak day too

May 13 (LeN) A soldier and a home-guard were critically wounded when LTTE cadres hurled grenades and fired at an army bunker in Trincomalee on Vesak day, the holiest day for Buddhists. The incident occurred around 8.30 last night at the bunker located at Bandaranaike Mawatha, Abayapura. The attackers had fled when the army retuned fire. more..

UNP independent list illegal - Vasu

May 13 (WS) The UNP’s last ditch attempt to save face in its quest to retain control of the Colombo Municipal Council came under fire yesterday as UPFA’s mayoral candidate Vasudewa Nanayakkara challenged the legal validity of the UNP’s strategy of enlisting their candidates through an independent group. more..

Weekly Political Roundup: Focus on coming elections

May 13 (WS) Despite the situation in the North, everybody’s attention was on the elections to the balance twenty two local government bodies where elections could not be held during the past local government elections held in March. All the leading political parties were fighting to achieve victory for their party. more..

LTTE spurns Muslim peace overture

May 13 (WS) The LTTE has continued to ignore a request by the Muslim Peace Secretariat (MPS) for a meeting with them although more than four months have passed since the proposal was made. “The Norwegian facilitators, who are facilitating this meeting, have continuously reminded the LTTE about our request, but we still haven’t received any positive response from them,” more..

Vesak that colours one's life

May 13 (WS) The Vesak decorations were set out with great ritual, beginning just before sunset. My father being a Buddhist, he had a set idea of how he wanted the lanterns to be lit and in what order. And that is, each member of the family had to light one lamp initially, hang it up on a favourite branch of a favourite tree and thereafter light any amount of lanterns after the domestics had lit theirs. more..

Why should EU dither?

May 13 (ANN) The LTTE bared its true intentions once again on Thursday (May 11). It is not peace that it seeks. It is all out to plunge the country back into a full scale war. The attempt to sink a privately-owned ship ferrying about 700 unarmed troops was part of a sinister plan not only to mar a national festival but to provoke a backlash on a day holy to the majority of Sri Lankans. more..

LTTE wanted a backlash on Vesak – Govt.

May 13 (PIS) Thursday’s attack on the Navy was aimed at triggering a massive communal backlash in the south, senior military officials said as passenger ferry Pearl Cruise II, carrying 710 officers and men, reached Kankesanthurai around 10 pm Thursday. more..

Valiant counter attack saved disaster - Navy Commander

May 13 (PIS) The gallant action of the officers and the sailors of the Naval Units who fought with bravery prevented a massive attack on the passenger ferry Pearl Cruise which was transporting 710 security personnel off Vettilaikkeni on Thursday and averted a backlash on the Vesak Day in the south, Navy Commander Vice Admiral Karannagoda said. more..

Govt. says Tiger air force base bombed in limited operation

May 13 (LNP) The Government in a statement yesterday confirmed that as a deterrent to further LTTE attacks, the air force launched limited aerial strikes on the identified LTTE aviation facility under construction at Iranamadu,. more..

Illicit distillery supplying liquor to LTTE areas

May 13 (LNP) In a shocking revelation the now defunct Wayamba distillery which was raided by the Excise Department over the illegal trade in large quantities of liquor had reportedly supplied those stocks to LTTE areas in the East. more..

LTTE refuses SriLankan technical team permission to enter Killinochchi

May 13 (LNP) A SriLankan Airlines technical team that was sent to Killinochchi on Thursday to inspect sea plane landing sites was refused permission to enter the area by the LTTE. Defence sources said that the technical team was sent following the LTTE indicating its willingness to accept a sea plane to transport its cadres from Killinochchi for consultations with their Wanni leadership. more..