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Separate proposals to APC from alternate UNP group

Mar 10 (LT) As the proposal to solve the national question put forward by the UNP is not acceptable to them the alternative group would put forward a separate set of proposals said Mr. Rajithe Senaratne. He said that the proposals put forward by the UNP are those that are compiled to suit Ranil Wickremasinghe and Choksy. more..

U.S. Employs less direct role in Sri Lanka conflict says Steven Mann

Mar 10 (AT) The U.S. State Department’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of South and Central Asia Steven R. Mann was his country’s ambassador in a Central Asian nation Turkmenistan when Sri Lanka’s Tamil Tiger outfit ceremonially rejected the government’s 2000 proposals. Political observers at that time confirmed that those were the best proposals Sri Lanka’s minority Tamils got to solve the national question in the country. more..

LTTE broadcasting illegally in Intelsat 12 satellite: Will be closed down soon – Intelsat Ltd.

Mar 10 (AT) Tamil Tigers are pirates and they are broadcasting illegally in the Intelsat 12 satellite without any proper authorization. The New York based Intelsat Ltd., the world’s largest commercial satellite communications services provider told “Asian Tribune” that that LTTE is not a customer of the Intelsat. more..

Sri Lanka to seek Kuwait assistance to build houses for 3500 Muslim families from North, chased out by LTTE

Mar 10 (AT) Sri Lanka Government is considering constructing houses for 3500 Muslim families who are languishing as refugees in Puttlam for the last 17 long torturous years, from the very day they were chased out of their places of abode in the Northern Province by Velupillai Prabakaran, Leader of the LTTE. more..

The Power Sharing Experience in Canada

Mar 10 (TW) “In Canada, weather is a shared subject with the Provincial govt taking responsibility for the months of April to September and the Federal Govt being responsible from October to March” deadpanned Mathew Mendelhson as the small group of Sri Lankan journalists seated around the table laughed heartily. more..

Dr. Vickramabahu rebukes Daily News report

Mar 10 (TW) On 28th Feb. 2007 Daily news carried a news item about my visit to Europe with many errors and lapses. I shall be most grateful if you publish the following correction. R.Srikanthan’s report on 28th Feb. 07 is interesting and it would have been informative too if not for the following lapses. more..

8 Bodies recovered from Wilpattu

Mar 10 (GDI) The bodies of eight persons who were missing since yesterday at Wilpattu Wild Life Sanctuary have been recovered and identified by the Army in their operations launched in searching for the missing group. According to the Media Center for National Security the bodies were having gunshot injuries. more..

US envoy appreciates Government’s effort to liberate North And East

Mar 10 (GDI) US Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Steven Mann said the he is appreciating the Governments commitment to peace and the on going mission to liberate the civilians living in North and East is a challenge that Government must react. Mann was on a two-day visit to Sri Lanka to hold discussions with Sri Lankan leaders. more..

Positive portrayal of women in media is essential to uplift them

Mar 10 (GDI) Positive portrayal of women in media is crucial for their upliftment. Stating this, Child Development and Women’s Empowerment Minister Sumedha G. Jayasena pointed out that the media could play major role towards the uplift of women. The Minister was addressing a workshop on Positive portrayal of women in media at the BMICH yesterday more..

Energy sector open for private investment - Power and Energy Minister

Mar 10 (GDI) Sri Lanka urged the private sector in the South Asian region to invest in the energy sector. Addressing the second meeting of the SAARC Energy Ministers held in New Delhi on Wednesday Power and Energy Minister W. D. J. Seneviratne said that for economic prosperity of SAARC region, the countries will have to ensure that all forms and resources of energy whether commercial or non-commercial, more..

Tigers with little options in Thoppigala

Mar 10 (GDI) Despite the instructions given by the LTTE terrorists to the civilians of Thoppigala area to remain in the area, 18,045 civilians had returned to the government controlled areas during the last month alone. But it is reported that the LTTE carders are still forcibly holding civilians as a human shield in Thoppigala area. more..

Resettling in Vakarei continues

Mar 10 (GDI) Out of the 430 families expecting to resettle in Uriyankattu- Vakarai up to yesterday 229 families have been resettled successfully by the Government. The rest will be settled with in today. The internally displaced men, women and children will start settling in their original homes through this programme. more..

US stresses need for power sharing

Mar 10 (LNP) The United States yesterday stressed the need for power sharing in Sri Lanka as a solution to the long standing conflict while reiterating concerns over the negative impact the fighting has had on the human rights situation in the country. Steven Mann, the visiting Principal Deputy Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs also expressed serious concerns over the human rights situation in the country and more..

LTTE activities no longer localized - Bogollagama

Mar 10 (LNP) The activities of the LTTE are no longer confined to Sri Lanka as the IISS publication `Military Balance 2007` has pointed out. There are now emerging commercial links between the LTTE and the al-Qaeda movement, stated Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama said in his keynote address on the topic `Sri Lanka`s Foreign & Security Policy, the challenge of terrorism` at the international Institute for strategic Studies (IISS) in London more..

US honours Lankan journalist with world award

Mar 10 (LNP) On the occasion of International Women`s Day, United States Ambassador Robert Blake has recognized lawyer, activist, author and the Sunday Times columnist Kishali Pinto-Jayawardena for the Secretary of State`s 2007 International Women of Courage Award. In a statement the embassy said its nominee, Ms Pinto-Jayawardena had been an unstinting advocate for the rule of law, the independence of the Sri Lankan judiciary and more..

Govt. considering power link with India

Mar 10 (LNP) The Government is considering an interconnection of the power grids of India and Sri Lanka, Power and Energy Minister W. D. J. Seneviratne said at the second meeting of SAARC Energy Ministers, which concluded in New Delhi yesterday. Seneviratne said Sri Lanka expects the support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for the study. more..

Legislators had failed: Wijedasa

Mar 10 (SAMN) Government MP Wijedasa Rajapaksha said Friday that legislators had failed in the task of doing something constructive for the resolution of the national question. Rajapaksha said there had been only allegations, curses and counter allegations regarding the matter with little being done to resolve the problem, despite parliamentarians representing all segments of the country. more..

Compensation for families of beheaded?

Mar 10 (SAMN) Foreign Employment Minister Keheliya Rambukwelle informed in Parliament Friday that government is considering paying compensation to the families of four Sri Lankans who were beheaded in Saudi Arabia recently. The Minister made this point responding to UNP Kandy District MP Lakshman Kiriella who charged during the adjournment debate in the House that the government had neglected this issue. more..

Trishaws main air pollution culprit

Mar 10 (SAMN) Sixty per cent of air pollution is caused by emissions from three-wheelers, Dr. D. S. Jayaweera, Member of the Board of Directors of Clean Air Sri Lanka said.The Government decided to ban the import of two stroke three-wheelers from 2011 as the excessive use of three-wheelers as a mode of short distance travel in main cities led to large scale air pollution, Dr. Jayaweera told a media briefing. more..

LTTE establishes an IT Wing

Mar 10 (SAMN) LTTE Leader V. Prabhakaran has formed an Information Technology Wing headed by his son Charles Anthony, who returned to Kilinochchi recently with an Aeronautical Engineering Degree from the United Kingdom, sources said. State intelligence units informed the government that this IT Wing, which started soon after the return of Charles Anthony six months ago, was studying all the satellite images, computer data gatherings and other computer related matters. more..

Sri Lanka's cash rates rocket to a new 7-year high amidst cash crunch

Mar 10 (LBO) Sri Lanka's overnight rates reached 30 percent amidst tight liquidity, with monetary authorities restricting access to its discount window, dealers said. In January Central Bank limited commercial bank's access to its discount window to six times a month and said it would not conduct open market auctions for cash injections unless the entire banking system was short of cash on a net basis. more..

Development projects in Trincomalee

Mar 10 (DN) The 2007 National Meelad-un-Nabi celebrations will held in Trincomalee district, centering Kinniya and Muttur. Many development projects also to be started in the Trincomalee district to coincide with the celebrations, Cooperatives Minister M. Najeeb Abdul Majeed said. President Mahinda Rajapaksa as Minister in charge of Religious Affairs and Moral Uplift has officially declared that annual National Meelad-un-Nabi celebrations will be held in the Trincomalee District. more..

Sinhala traitors should be exposed - PM

Mar 10 (DN) If anyone among the Sinhalese did menial service to the LTTE he or she should be automatically labelled a traitor, Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake said. The Prime Minister was addressing the national ceremony to mark International Women’s Day held at the BMICH, Colombo on Thursday. “When they engage in treacherous acts helping the LTTE for monetary gain, obstructing our struggle to save the country from terrorism, we should all stand up against them as one,” the Prime Minister said. more..

More than 140 foreigners in Lankan jails

Mar 10 (DM) More than 140 foreigners are serving jail terms in Sri Lanka while five of them are facing death sentences, a minister told Parliament yesterday. Foreign Employment Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said among them were 68 Indians, five Chinese, two Britishers, two Canadians, eight Singaporeans, two Nepalese, seven Iranians, a Maldivian and a Dutch. more..

Speaker’s concern un derstandable

Mar 10 (DM) The concern expressed by Speaker W.J.M.Lokubanada about what he suspects as an attempt by some sections of the media to denigrate parliament is understandable. As the custodian of the rights and privileges of all members of parliament and chief guardian of the dignity and decorum of the country’s supreme legislature, his anxiety cannot be trivialised. more..

Congress backs crackdown on LTTE supporters

Mar 10 (Hindu) The Tamil Nadu Congress Committee has said it would not tolerate a culture of arms in Tamil Nadu and it would stoutly oppose any move to give room to violence in the State. Welcoming the State Government's measures to crack down on the supporters of LTTE in the State, TNCC president M. Krishnasswamy said the peace prevailing in the State should not be disturbed by the "unlawful activities" of LTTE supporters. more..

Visit Lanka at Rs 9,999, Sri Lankan beckons Chennaiites

Mar 10 (NIP) After having touched optimum operational capacity out of Chennai, SriLankan Airlines wants tourists from here to occupy most of the seats to Colombo. The airline is gearing up to aggressively market its ‘Visit Sri Lanka’ packages in the city. Designed in association with Sri Lanka Tourism Board, the unique two-night and three-day package inclusive of taxes allows a traveller to enjoy a choice of destinations including Colombo, the heritage city of Kandy and two enchanting beach resorts – Bentota and Negombo at Rs 9,999. more..

LTTE's hawala networks in TN

Mar 10 (Times) It was a wake-up call for Indian security agencies when the Coast Guard seized a LTTE boat laden with over 750 kilos of explosives a month ago near Chennai. During interrogation the crew of the boat made startling revelations and exposed that the wide network of LTTE sympathisers is alive and thriving in Tamil Nadu. Following leads given by those arrested on board the seized ship the Tamil Nadu police has busted multiple hawala networks in the past one week. more..

Two charged for people smuggling

Mar 10 (HS) Two Indonesian men have been charged over a boatload of Sri Lankan asylum seekers intercepted by the Australian Navy in international waters. The Australian Federal Police (AFP) yesterday arrested the two men, aged 26 and 21, on Christmas Island and charged them with facilitating the unlawful entry into Australia of five or more people. "The AFP will allege in court the men facilitated the entry of more than five people from Indonesia to Australian waters last month," more..

Indian fisherman killed by Lankan navy

Mar 10 (IANS) An Indian fisherman was killed and another injured early Saturday, off the Ramanathapuram coast across the Palk Strait, when their boat was reportedly fired upon by Sri Lankan navy patrols. This is the second time that Indian fishermen have been targeted by the Sri Lankan Navy in three weeks. The boat came under the attack during wee hours of Saturday injuring two fishermen. more..

DMK to protest killing of fishermen

Mar 10 (PTI) The ruling DMK in Tamil Nadu would hold a demonstration in front of the Sri Lankan Deputy High Commission here on Monday, protesting against the recent incidents of firing by the island nation's Navy on Indian fishermen at the Palk Straits, a party release said today. State Fisheries Minister, K P P Sami, would lead the demonstration, the release said, adding Power Minister, Arcot N Veerasamy, would also take part in the protest. more..

Refugees pour into east Sri Lanka camps

Mar 10 (Reuters) Schools became makeshift refugee camps in eastern Sri Lanka on Saturday to handle an influx of more than 30,000 civilians fleeing fighting between the army and Tamil Tigers, officials and aid workers said. The military, which is fighting sporadic artillery and mortar battles with Tiger rebels in the eastern district of Batticaloa, estimated around 32,000 civilians had poured into army-held territory from rebel areas. more..

Witness protection vital to Sri Lanka abuses probe

Mar 10 (Reuters) Sri Lanka desperately needs a witness protection scheme to help ensure that a probe into a host of human rights violations and killings is a success and to avoid assassinations, a top foreign envoy said on Saturday. Bernard Kouchner, former French minister, founder of aid group Medecins sans Frontieres and European Union appointee to an international panel of observers, sees a last-ditch opportunity to try to safeguard human rights on the island. more..

Shelling displaces 40,000 Tamils in SL

Mar 10 (HT) Over 40,000 Tamil civilians were displaced in the past two days alone by the heavily shelling of LTTE-held areas in the Eastern district of Batticaloa by the Sri Lankan Army, according to the LTTE's military spokesman Rasaiah Ilanthirayan. The affected area is Kokkadicholai and the surrounding villages, where the LTTE is entrenched. more..

Senior army officers killed in SL game park

Mar 10 (HT) A search party of the Sri Lankan Army found the dead bodies of Lt Col Jayantha Suraweera and seven others, deep inside the Wilpattu Wildlife Sanctuary in Anuradhapura district in North Central Sri Lanka on Sunday. Mysteriously, it was on the same spot that a search party had found the bodies of award winning novelist Nihal de Silva and seven other Sri Lankan tourists on May 28, 2006. They had been victims of a land mine blast. more..

US downplays ACSA, says it's 'very modest'

Mar 10 (HT) Steven Mann, the US Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia, said in Colombo on Friday, that the Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA) which the US and Sri Lanka signed last week, was a "very routine and fairly modest" agreement. Asked if it would enable US military involvement in Sri Lanka to help the latter face the terrorist challenge, Mann said that ACSA envisaged no sale of military equipment. more..

Tamil Tigers say Sri Lankan commando raid repulsed; deny 20 fighters killed

Mar 10 (AP) An assault by government commandos on a Tamil Tiger base in eastern Sri Lanka was repulsed, a rebel spokesman said Saturday, denying the camp had been overrun and 20 guerrillas killed. Military spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe said Special Task Force troops stormed the base in Ampara district, 220 kilometers (130 miles) east of Colombo, on Friday. He said at least 20 Tamil insurgents were killed and three commandos died. more..

Eight killed in Sri Lanka wildlife park as fighting escalates

Mar 10 (AFP) Suspected Tamil Tiger rebels shot dead four security personnel and four park officials inside a wildlife sanctuary as fighting escalated elsewhere on the island, the military said Saturday. The bullet-riddled bodies of the eight men were found following a search operation in the Wilpattu national park in the northwest of the island, a military official said. more..

Abducted Sri Lankan academic alive

Mar 10 (IANS) A top Sri Lankan academic who dramatically went missing from the heart of Colombo when he was a university head remains untraced but is believed to be alive, Tamil sources say. The sources, in contact with the family of S. Raveendranath, asserted that the 55-year-old man was in captivity and that his abductors were afraid of releasing him lest their identity become known. more..

Was it an Australian diplomat who attempted to Bribe P.B.Jayasundara with 1 billion rupees?

Mar 11 (LeN) The diplomats and institutions and officers of companies which bid for large scale companies are paying great attention to a report which says that secretary to the ministry of finance P.B. Jayasundara was offered a bribe of 1 million US dollars to get a tender for an Australian funded project. It is said that Jayasundara had informed the matter to the President. more..

Different statements from police and Karuna faction regarding the bodies found from Muthurajawela

Mar 11 (LeN) Spokesperson of the Karuna faction Asad Maulana says that the five bodies that were found from Muthurajawela belong to 5 of their Intelligence unit members who were deployed in uncleared areas. Maulana said that around 100 persons are being deployed in uncleared areas to look into LTTE matters and said that the five dead were brought to Colombo to be sent abroad because the LTTE had got to know about them. more..

Un-making old choices: the battle for peace in Sri Lanka

Mar 11 (AT) Sri Lanka an island of three nations, Sinhala-Tamil, and Muslim locates in South Asia. The island is popular both for deadly ethnic civil war and democracy. This article, however, only deals with the deadly ethnic civil war which killed more than 70,000 Sri Lankanas, mostly the ethnic Tamils who predominantly live in the country’s war-ridden North-East, the region Tamils consider as the traditional homeland. more..

Red Cross: more than 100,000 people displaced in east Sri Lankan district

Mar 11 (AP) Heavy fighting in rebel-held parts of Sri Lanka has forced thousands more civilians to flee their homes in the past two days, leaving more than 100,000 displaced in one eastern district, the Red Cross said Saturday. Battles have escalated in recent days between government troops and separatist Tamil Tiger rebels in parts of the country's east, longtime rebel strongholds, after a few weeks' lull. more..

Praxis And Pragmatism In Sri Lanka

Mar 11 (CC) The international community, in short the West – Both the US and UK in particular, do not have any single reason to commit the sin of omission by evading the urgency of ‘direct’ humanitarian intervention in Sri Lanka. The sole interest of the West, aside the geo-political reasons, is to recover the lost paradise of investment. To do so, they are going for cosmetic fixes on the peripheral problems by not addressing the perennial grievance between the Sinhalas and the Tamils. more..

Sri Lanka tea replanting, promotions hit due to withheld industry funds

Mar 11 (LBO) Sri Lanka's smallholders are not getting promised incentives for replanting and the national promotional budget for tea has also been hit because industry funds are being held by the state, officials said. Local tea exporters currently pay a four-rupee cess on every kilogram of tea sold, netting in over a billion rupees last year, channeled into a state fund, though a third of that never benefited the industry, more..

Batti, the refugee city

Mar 11 (TW) The town does not look like a war zone. People from as far away as Trincomalee have come to Batticaloa to seek shelter from the shelling. Though the place has not been touched by the recent violence in the east, people already have got used to the situation. Isolated events such as abductions and shootings indicate that Batticaloa is not 100% safe. more..

"Look for Prof. Raveendranath in Vanni " - Pillaiyan advices family members of the Vice Chancellor

Mar 11 (AT) Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal categorically denies of any involvement in the abduction of Prof. Sivasubramanium Raveendranath, Vice Chancellor of the Eastern University. Prof. Raveendranath (55 years) the Vice Chancellor of the University was abducted on 15 December 2006, in Colombo. So far no one has claimed responsibility for the abduction. more..

300 Killed civilians from Trincomalee district to be compensated

Mar 11 (AT) Sri Lanka Government has decided to compensate all those civilians killed in the Trincomalee districts due to clashes with and also killed by the LTTE. Abdul Risath Bathiyutheen, Minister of Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services told “Asian Tribune” that Rs. 100,000 would be paid as compensation to the family members of those killed in the conflict from the Trincomalee district. more..

Police say that a politician and two under world gangsters are planning to kill us -Sripathi

Mar 11 (LeN) Former Ports Development Minister Sripathy Suriarachchi told 'LeN' that police informed him that under world members named "Prince" and "Kudu Lal" are planning to murder him and former Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera with the support of a politician. Yesterday in paliament Suriarachchi made a statement, regarding the threats posed to his life. more..

This country has a law! President tells intellectuals

Mar 11 (LT) The country has a law; the government cannot act according to jungle law said President Mahinda Rajapakse addressing intellectuals at Temple Trees. The President rejected allegations that the government was violating human rights and those taken in for questioning are inhumanly treated. He said extensive investigations have been launched regarding abductions and murders. more..