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Govt. attempts to curb JVP moves against tiger-Indian hoodoos! - JVP

Apr 25 (LT) When the JVP acts to rise up against tiger-Indian schemes in the Eastern Province the government attempts to curb such moves says Mr. Anura Kumara Dissanayake, Member of the Political Bureau of the JVP. He said this at a media discussion held in Colombo today. He said though provincial council elections were held in 93, 97 and 2005 it was not possible to hold any provincial council election in the Eastern Province after 1988. more..

Buddhist Temple in Oslo...

Apr 25 (MB) According to media reports, UNP parliamentarian Dr. Jayalath Jayewardena has requested the assistance of the Royal Norwegian Government to establish a Buddhist temple in Oslo, Norway, for the benefit of Sri Lankan Buddhists living in Norway. In addition to the above proposal of Dr Jayawardanena, let us rush through some of his involvements for the ‘upliftment’ of Buddha Sasana, both in Sri Lanka and India, during the last few years. more..

SLMC eyeing pro-LTTE vote

Apr 25 (MG) National Unity Alliance Leader Minister Ferial Ashraff yesterday accused the SLMC of trying to ruin the chance of Muslim Chief Minister emerging at the Eastern Provincial poll by attempting to split the Muslim vote 'The SLMC is shamelessly parading a portrait of late leader A.H.M. Ashraff. They call Pilliyan a beast. But they try to bring a barbarian to power by dividing the Muslim votes and ruining the chance of a Muslim in the East being appointed as Chief Minister. more..

The Eastern provincial elections and the Muslim reality

Apr 25 (MG) In the present context to the run up to a Provincial Council Election being held for the Eastern Provincial Council, it is sad to note that important Muslim citizens of Sri Lanka have failed to understand and realize the important issue of the Muslim voters of the North Eastern and Eastern Provinces. The present issue about Muslim voters in the North Eastern and Eastern Provinces is not whether Hon. Rauf Hakeem is an extremist as stated by Mr. Tilvin Silva, more..

RR Sat stops LTTE's Euro Tv test transmission

Apr 25 (AT) The Tamil Tigers' test transmissions of its Euro television channel from Israel using the RR Sat of Tel Aviv for uplink facility has been stopped after two days of test transmission. The Asian Tribune reported about this transmission earlier this week in the story titled 'LTTE's Euro Tv moves to Israel after blockade by France and Italy'. more..

'PNM has indiscreetly intervened in internal issue of the JVP'

Apr 25 (LT) Patriotic National Movement (PNM) has unnecessarily intervened in an internal issue of the JVP without even consulting the members of its Executive Council says Ven. Dhambara Amila Thero, Member of the Executive Council of the PNM. Writing to Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera, President of the PNM, Ven. Amila Thero states the way PNM has acted regarding the issue that has come up within the JVP indicates that more..

Former Indian FM expresses support for APRC proposals

Apr 25 (LG) Former Foreign and Finance Minister of India, Shri Yaswant Sinha expressed his support for the implementation of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution by the Government, in line with the recommendation of the All Party Representative Committee (APRC). He made this observation when he paid a courtesy call on Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama at the Foreign Ministry today (24 April 2008). more..

Muhamalai offensive is part of govt. poll-propaganda

Apr 25 (LD) The Muhamalai offensive is a hurriedly planned attempt by the government with the ulterior motive of gaining advantage at the forthcoming Eastern provincial Council elections, UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake has charged. Speaking at a media briefing in Colombo this morning (April 25th), he said that classified reports indicate a certain defeat for the government at the May 10th polls. more..

'JVP opposes India's involvement in Sri Lanka conflict'

Apr 25 (LD) The JVP vehemently opposes any Indian involvement in Sri Lanka's national conflict, party strongman Vijitha Herath has said. Mr. Herath said, "Now, India is interfering in Sri Lanka's internal affairs on the pretext of various economic pacts. Our party has drawn its attention to this. We won't allow India to get our country to dance according to its tune." "India and western countries are involved in the country's national conflict as it also faces political conflict. more..

First Trade Fair in East attracts huge crowds

Apr 25 (GDI) The First ever Trade Fair held in Muttur in the Trincomalee district was a success with the attendance of over 5,000 people for the fair. The Trade Fair organised by the Enterprise Resource Centre (ERC), a project of Muslim Aid Sri Lanka and its partner AmeriCares, was held on April 9 and 10. “The fair gave an opportunity for people to showcase what is being produced in the area while offering small businessmen a chance to sell their goods and establish a customer base” more..

Swift measures to boost dairy industry in the country

Apr 25 (GDI) The Government has launched a progrmme to promote agricultural crop processing industry in Sri Lanka by providing a total of Rs.5000 million at a concessionary rate of interest. The initiated programme will provide concessions for small scale dairy farmers, liquid milk processing industries and agricultural crop processors. The objective of this is to enhance local liquid milk production, milk and milk based products. more..

Better opportunities for textile exports to India from SL

Apr 25 (GDI) Sri Lanka has received the opportunity of enhancing textile exports to India under the 'India-Sri Lanka Free Trade Area' which will provide zero duty market access for 3 million pieces of garments annually from Sri Lanka to India. In terms of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two nations Sri Lanka will enable to export textiles to India without any sourcing conditions and port restrictions. more..

UN looks forward to strengthening cooperation with Sri Lanka

Apr 25 (GDI) While assuring keen interest in continued consultations between the UN Country Team and the Government of Sri Lanka, Angela Kane, The UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, following her recent visit to Sri Lanka looks forward to further strengthen the cooperation between the UN and the Government of Sri Lanka, foreign media sources reported. more..

Summary of the Cabinet decisions

Apr 25 (GDI) Cabinet granted approval to a memorandum submitted by Chamal Rajapaksa, Minister of Ports & Aviation, for the construction of a model village near the proposed Weerawila International Airport. Airport & Aviation Services Limited, which comes under the purview of the Ministry of Ports & Aviation, wishes to construct an Airport Model Village affiliated with the proposed Development of Weerawila International Airport. more..

Madhu Liberated; LTTE leaves unable to withstand the army advance

Apr 25 (GDI) Sri Lanka Army liberated the Madhu shrine this morning (25th). LTTE unable to withstand the army advance were beaten off. According to Security sources, soldiers of 8 Sri Lanka Light Infantry reached the shrine as the terrorists beat a retreat unable to withstand the army advance. The Catholic shrine is held sacred and respected by all Sri Lankans irrespective of religion and ethnicity. more..

200 Tigers killed in fresh offensive in Muhamalai

Apr 25 (LNP) LTTE Radio Transmissions have confirmed that 71 Tigers perished in the confrontation between the Army and the LTTE at the Army FDL north and south of the A9 route at Muhamalai, Commander Security Forces Jaffna Major General G.A. Chandrasiri said. Addressing a media briefing at the Security Forces Headquarters in Palali yesterday, the Commander said the troops launched a fresh offensive killing around 200 LTTE cadres. more..

The Red and Blue hypocrisy

Apr 25 (LNP) Rathu Sahodarayas, as is well known, are masters of slinging mud at others. They have given many a political leader a right royal mud bath. The JVP may have inherited that trait from its founder Rohana Wijeweera, whose forte was vicious iconoclastic calumny, with which he apparently sought to overcome some personality problems. His successors seem to have overtaken him posthumously in that respect, if their sordid conduct is any indication. more..

Pre poll violence escalates in East

Apr 25 (SAMN) Pre-election violence has escalated in the East, mainly in Batticaloa and Ampara, with 22 incidents of election violations reported so far. Election monitors said they had already raised concerns over the situation with the Elections Commissioner and the police. PAFFREL Deputy Executive Director Rohana Hettiarachchi said eleven incidents were reported from the Ampara district, nine from Batticaloa and two from the Trincomalee district. more..

Preserving Galle's unique identity

Apr 25 (SAMN) The Galle Fort was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1986 and since then, more than 50 of the Fort's 473 houses have been purchased and restored by foreigners, said Southern Province Governor Kumari Balasuriya, speaking as Chief Guest at the Heritage Awards presentation ceremony at the Galle Fort Hotel. She said all the projects were privately funded and conformed to all UNESCO requirements. more..

IIGEP will not be replaced: Samarasinghe

Apr 25 (SAMN) The International Independent Group of Eminent Persons (IIGEP), scheduled to leave the country on April 30, will not be replaced by any other observer group, Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said Thursday. Asked at the weekly Cabinet press briefing, if a group of observers from Asian countries would be invited to replace the IIGEP, he said "no such decision has been taken." more..

‘Don’t turn East into another Wayamba’

Apr 25 (SAMN) The main opposition UNP Thursday said it would not accept the results of the Eastern provincial poll if the government manipulated it without allowing the people to exercise their mandate freely. UNP parliamentarian Gayantha Karunathilleke told journalists the party would be compelled to reject the election results if it turned out to be something like the 1999 Wayamba provincial council poll where mass scale rigging was alleged. more..

Lanka, Korea MoU for solid waste management project

Apr 25 (DN) The Environment and Natural Resources Ministry signed an MoU with the Republic of Korea for the implementation of a joint solid waste management project in four local Government areas in the Colombo District under the Ministry's Pilisara project. Under this agreement, Korea will provide over Rs. 450 million for the implementation of this project while the Sri Lanka Government will contribute Rs. 150 million. more..

Banks to allocate 10% of lending portfolio to agriculture

Apr 25 (DN) The Central Bank's decision requesting commercial banks to dedicate 10 per cent of their lending portfolio to agriculture would have far reaching benefits to the economy, Deputy Government Central Bank Dr. Uthum Herath said. Herath said such a decision has not been taken before. "Though over 30 per cent of the public is engaged in agriculture banks were not giving preferential treatment when it comes to borrowing. more..

President decides CM will be one with most votes

Apr 25 (Island) Minister Susil Premajayantha yesterday said that President Mahinda Rajapaksa had decided in a very democratic manner and in fairness to all communities in the East that the Chief Minister would be the candidate who obtains the highest number of votes at the polls on May 10. He said the President had decided that the Government would move forward with the proposal made by the All Party Representative Committee(APRC) to implement the 13th Amendment in full. more..

Sarana, Dulip new UPFA MPs

Apr 25 (Island) The vacancies created in the UPFA ranks by the deaths of two senior Parliamentarians, Anura Bandaranaike and Jeyaraj Fernandopulle, will be filled by Sarana Gunawardhana and Dulip Wijesekara when Parliament sessions resume on May 6. Both Parliamentarians in-waiting are from the Gampaha District. The JVP political drama involving the two factions and the UNP’s protest against the appointment of Dammika Kitulgoda as Acting Secretary General of Parliament are expected to steal the limelight on that day. more..

Rs.45 M. robbed from bank in daring heist

Apr 25 (DM) In a daring midday robbery, a gang of six armed with guns and hand grenades had entered the Bank of Ceylon, Hali Ela branch last afternoon, and got away with cash and jewellery worth Rs. 45 million, at a time the town was bustling with people, Badulla police said. Four of the robbers had entered the bank, while the other two had kept watch outside. One had gone up to the bank manager and told him that he was waiting till his mother came to withdraw some money to purchase some land. more..

Dr. Rama Mani’s contract with ICES ends

Apr 25 (DM) The Chairman of the International Centre for ethnic Studies (ICES) Prof Silva acting on behalf of the Board of Directors and Dr. Rama Mani had mutually agreed to bring an end to Dr. Rama Mani’s existing contract as the Executive Director of the ICES office in Colombo, a statement issued by the ICES said. Continuation of her employment had become impossible due to the revocation of her visa by the Sri Lankan Government and her subsequent expulsion by the State, it added. more..

Sri Lanka plant blazes green trail for Marks & Spencer

Apr 25 (LBO) UK retailer, Marks & Spencer says a newly re-built eco-friendly apparel factory in Sri Lanka is part of a plan that will see all operations being 'greened' by 2012, in response to growing environmental consciousness in its markets. M&S, commissioned a completely re-built 'green' casual wear manufacturing plant run by Sri Lankan apparel giant Brandix, north of Colombo Friday. The plant employs 1,600 people. more..

TMVP releases 28 child soldiers

Apr 25 (Reuters) A Sri Lankan state-backed former Tamil Tiger rebel group, accused of abductions and killings, has freed 28 child soldiers, UNICEF said on Friday, welcoming the second major release in two weeks. The TMVP, made up of fighters who defected from the mainstream Tamil Tigers in 2004 and helped the government evict their former comrades from the island's east, released 11 children in early April. more..

Sri Lanka clamps down on war reports after battle losses

Apr 25 (AFP) Sri Lankan authorities have extended "unofficial" censorship to hospitals and funeral parlours as losses mount after a major battle against Tamil rebels, a media rights group said Friday. The Free Media Movement (FMM) said the authorities had prevented photographers taking pictures of military casualties brought to hospitals following heavy fighting in the northern peninsula of Jaffna on Wednesday. more..

Over-confident SLA again walks into a deadly LTTE trap

Apr 25 (LG) For the second time in less than two years, an over-confident Sri Lankan Army (SLA) has walked into a deadly trap laid by the LTTE in the Muhamalai area near Jaffna in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka on April 23 ,2008, and faced a rout. It not only lost over 150 soldiers, who were killed by the LTTE, but also enabled the LTTE to seize a large quantity of arms and ammunition from the battle scene. more..

Sri Lanka's displaced find little joy in 'liberation' from Tigers

Apr 25 (AFP) Sri Lanka's military victory over the Tamil Tiger rebels in the multi-ethnic east of the island means little to displaced people such as 12-year-old Suna Madushandan who can not go home. Along with the rest of his family, he ran for his life when their home in Sampur, in the northeastern district of Trincomalee, was showered with mortar bombs fired by advancing government forces in 2006. "My stomach and leg were hit," he says, displaying the scars. more..

Sri Lanka lost 185 soldiers in Jaffna battle: military sources

Apr 25 (AFP) At least 165 Sri Lankan soldiers were killed and 20 more went missing in a major battle with Tamil separatists this week, military sources told AFP Friday as journalists attacked widening censorship. The toll makes Wednesday's clash the bloodiest in recent years and saw the authorities extend "unofficial" press censorship to hospitals and funeral parlours, a media rights group said. more..

Sri Lanka army takes control of Madhu church

Apr 25 (AP) Sri Lankan forces took control Friday of a revered Roman Catholic church that religious groups had feared was in danger of being damaged by the raging civil war between the government and ethnic Tamil separatists, the military said. The seizure of the church in Madhu - which had been abandoned by the Tamil Tiger rebels - was an important morale boost for the government two days after scores of soldiers were killed in a fierce battle with the rebels. more..

Sri Lanka Brandix to invest more money to get 'green' label

Apr 26 (LBO) Sri Lankan apparel exporter Brandix Group which supplies retail brand like Marks & Spencer said Friday it plans to invest 25 million dollars on environmental initiatives in the next four years. Brandix chief executive Ashroff Omar said the island has gained international recognition as a major location for ethical manufacturing and was ahead of many of its competitors in the region in eco-friendly manufacture. more..

Sri Lanka Tourism builds event calendar to guide visitors

Apr 26 (LBO) Sri Lanka is preparing an annual calendar of events in the island and is seeking information on events that are likely to interest visitors, the island's tourism promotion office said. "Most are repeat visitors…look forward to witnessing and participating in local events," the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau said in a statement. "These visitors seek to plan their holidays to coincide with happening events, and the proposed Sri Lanka Calendar of Events will be designed to assist them…" more..

SriLankan cancels flights following pilots' sick note campaign

Apr 26 (LD) SriLankan Airlines has been forced to cancel many of its scheduled flights following a sick note campaign by its pilots, airport sources say. Pilots are protesting the non-fulfillment of several promises they had been given by President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his brother Aviation Services Minister Chamal Rajapaksa. At a function to celebrate the return of the national carrier's management to the government, the President had been briefed by the staff about the service problems they are facing. more..

‘Hiru’ FM frequencies to President’s son?

Apr 26 (LD) ‘Lankadissent’ reliably learns that the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) is attempting to grant the radio frequencies issued to ‘Hiru FM’ of ABC Radio Network to ‘Tharunyata Hetak’ organization. The organization, headed by the President’s son Namal Rajapaksa is to start a commercial radio network, reports add. The Ministry of Mass Media has already given the green light for the project and frequency bands applied from the TRC. more..

Inclement weather hits several areas

Apr 26 (LD) Heavy rains and strong winds wrecked havoc in several areas of the country yesterday afternoon (Apr. 24th). Three houses were destroyed and 13 others damaged following a storm in Embilipitiya, where the power station at Ethgala in Panamure, buildings of a school in Maduwanwela and farming land also suffered extensive damage. Meanwhile, the National Disaster Management Centre says more than 50 houses have been damaged due to strong winds and rains in Ratnapura and Puttalam. more..

Govt. denies 'war censorship'

Apr 26 (BBC) The Sri Lankan government has denied accusations by a media watchdog of censoring news from the war zone. Colombo based Free Media Movement (FMM) said photographers were barred by the officials of entering into hospitals where injured soldiers are being treated. At least 43 soldiers were killed and nearly 100 more sustained injuries at the battles erupted near Muhamalai Forward Defence Line (FDL), according to government figures. more..

Sri Lanka blast kills eight and injures dozens

Apr 26 (LBO) A blast near a crowded bus station South of Sri Lanka's capital Colombo has left at least eight dead and more than a 30 injured, police and eyewitnesses said. The explosion went off in the suburb of Piliyandala during the evening rush hour at around 6.45 pm, the defence ministry said. An LBO reporter at the Colombo south hospital in Kalubowila said eight dead bodies had been brought to the hospital. more..

Sri Lanka bus bomb kills at least 25

Apr 26 (Reuters) At least 25 people were killed and more than 40 wounded when a suspected Tamil Tiger bomb ripped through a packed commuter bus on the outskirts of the Sri Lankan capital on Friday, the military said. The blast, which struck the bus in a residential suburb during the evening rush hour, was the latest incident in a bloody week in Sri Lanka, where government forces and Tiger rebels are locked in a violent new chapter of a 25-year civil war. more..

Medical Camp for the Wanni IDPs in the Puttalam District

Apr 26 (PISL) A Medical Camp for the residents of the Noracholai and Alankudah camps was successfully conducted at the Alankudah Muslim Vidyalaya on 23rd February 2008. On a request made by SCOPP, the Golden Key Eye & ENT Hospital at Rajagiriya made available the services of four general physicians and four Eye & ENT specialists and also met their transportation and accommodation costs. more..

Peace through Soccer festivities in Trincomalee – a resounding success

Apr 26 (PISL) The Soccer Carnival, organized jointly by SCOPP, the Eastern Governor and the Ministry of Education and Sports of the Eastern Province proved to be a resounding success, attracting large crowds. The event served as a boost to the game of soccer and young sportsmen of the area. The Soccer Carnival was made possible following the liberation of the East by the government, ridding the area of terrorists. more..

Watchlist for Disaster

Apr 26 (PISL) One of the more predictable aspects of the silly season, when Sri Lanka’s human rights record gets attacked in preparation for review in Geneva, is that the usual suspects should reiterate the old discredited stories. Certainly there are areas in which the human rights record can be improved, and the government has already taken steps to deal with issues raised by Special Rapporteurs such as Phillip Alston and Manfred Novak and Walter Kalin. more..

“Too Little , Too Late” considerations will not satisfy Tamils

Apr 26 (FI) “You are now considering provincial councils. These provincial councils law was made part of the constitution by 13th amendment in year 1987. You have taken 20 full years for just mere consideration. It is too sans police and land powers. Sinhala was made the only official language in 1956. You corrected this at least on paper in 1988 through the 16th amendment to the constitution. It has taken another 22 years in this case. more..

Tiger fury could be halted only by executing correct strategy in the political field! – JVP

Apr 26 (LT) This fury of the tiger terrorists could be halted only by defeating them in the political field just as Security Forces are defeating them in the battle field says the JVP. Condemning the terrorist attack carried out by tiger terrorists by exploding a bomb in a passenger bus at Piliyandala that killed 26 and injured more than 50, the JVP points out that whenever tiger terrorists are confronted with glaring defeats they target innocent civilians to conceal “the trauma of their defeats.” more..

Govt. attempts to deceive masses with Tissa Vitharana’s new proposals! – Vijithe Herath

Apr 26 (LT) The new proposals to be presented by Tissa Vitharana and the All Party Representative Committee (APRC) based on the experiences they claim to have gained after their tour of North Ireland from the 5th to the 12th of this month are but an attempt by the government to deceive the masses in this country says JVP Parliamentarian Vijithe Herath. Mr. Herath said the proposals are said to include both unitary as well as federal solutions and more..

Medical Camp for the Northern Muslims IDPs in the Puttalam District

Apr 26 (MG) A Medical Camp for the residents of the Noracholai and Alankudah camps was successfully conducted at the Alankudah Muslim Vidyalaya on a request made by SCOPP; the Golden Key Eye & ENT Hospital at Rajagiriya made available the services of four general physicians and four Eye & ENT specialists and also met their transportation and accommodation costs. The CEO and the Marketing Manager of the Golden Key Hospital were personally present on the occasion. more..

This Govt. thinks of the people only before elections - Gayantha K

Apr 26 (SLW) Addressing the Media at the UNP media unit today (24 Apr), UNP Parliamentarian Gayantha Karunatileke emphasised that a Govt. elected by the people should not think of them and their welfare at elections period only, while burdening them with acute hardships and breaking Govt. promises given to the people all the other time. He said, when the UNP pointed out, earlier, that rice price was shooting up beyond Rs. 80.00 per kilo when the price of paddy was as low as Rs. 16.00, more..