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Barbarous Tortures by TID

June 4 (LG) I have (Deleted).children. My wife is Sankari Sarma Shivaguru Sarma age (Deleted). Our children are now aged (Deleted). Since 1992 my wife is mentally affected. Doctor (Name Deleted) treated her. Due to Sooriya Kathir attack, we were displaced from Jaffna loosing all over properties and we moved to Kanthasamy Temple in Kilinochchi. Again we were displaced from Kilinochchi due to the Jeyasikkuru attack to Vavuniya from there we went to Colombo in search of a job. more..

When Sri Lanka is Pricked, Indian Navy Jumps

June 4 (LG) Sri Lanka is a tiny island south of the giant India with over 50 times the population of Sri Lanka. There is an ethnic war going on between the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil minority. Whenever Sri Lankan armed forces are pricked in that civil war, Indian Navy jumps to attention. Why? In October 2007, Tamil rebels, the LTTE, carried out a daring and successful attack at a Sri Lankan Air Force Base in Anuradhapura, deep in Sinhala territory. more..

Blast from the past

June 4 (FL) THE drama that unfolded on May 16, hours before Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillayan was administered the oath of office and secrecy as the first Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Eastern Provincial Council (EPC) by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, best captured the significance of the event to all the stakeholders in Sri Lanka’s 25-year-old ethnic strife. more..

'India’s naval surveillance a big help to Sri Lanka'

June 4 (Hindu) India’s maritime “surveillance” has “helped” Sri Lanka in “a big way” in facing the challenge from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Emphasising this, Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollogama told The Hindu that his country would continue to “advocate” that the international community take steps to dry up the sources of funding and other forms of support for the LTTE. more..

No land for bio-fuel : President

June 4 (BBC) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has ruled out the use of arable land for the production of biofuel. The Sri Lankan president was speaking at the UN World Food Summit held in Rome on Tuesday. "Sri Lanka is firm in the decision that no land that can be used for food will be used for bio-fuel whatever the commercial attraction may be," said Rajapaksa. "We will continue to give the highest priority to increased agriculture, dairy farming and more..

Killing Mahinda not solution : LTTE

June 4 (BBC) Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka say that the national question cannot be resolved by killing innocent civilians or political leaders. The head of LTTE political wing, Balasingham Nadesan, denied any knowledge of killing civilians in the south. In the first ever interview in Sinhala since being appointed as the head of the political wing, he told BBC’s Chandana Keerthi Bandara that "many other elements" are operating in the south. more..

Elephants caught in Sri Lanka war

June 4 (BBC) "Gunshot wound, this is a gunshot wound, and this one, there are so many gunshot wounds," said Sri Lankan government vet, Doctor Chandana Jayasinghe. He was standing next to the huge, slumbering bull elephant in a clearing in the jungle, hypodermic syringe in hand. "It is normal, they all have gunshot wounds." The men of the Wildlife Conservation Department had ventured into the tangled scrub to find the wounded elephant. more..

IPL is fun, nothing more than that, says Murali

June 4 (HT) For a man who has over 1,000 international wickets in his kitty, a mediocre IPL is hardly something to be worried about. Muttiah Muralitharan’s wicket-taking spree might have diminished in the tournament, but what really defines the man is his competitive outlook towards each game and, of course, the smile at the end of every delivery. His eight wickets in the competition have come at an unusual 43.92, but more..

Chaos Island

June 4 (ML) The level of chaos in the government reached dizzying heights over the last few days on fronts. If the assurances given by TMVP Head and Eastern Chief Minister Pillayan to M.L.A.M. Hizbullah that he would bring his cadres into check and stop them from picking on Muslims were not bad enough, the killing of two of Pillayan’s cadres — allegedly by LTTE pistol gang agents — laid to rest any whims about ‘democracy’ and ‘liberation’ of the east. more..

Govt’s myopic moves to save fuel

June 4 (ML) The government while resorting to fuel price hikes has introduced various proposals to address the issue of escalating international oil prices. The government, in a bid to curb expenditure announced on Monday the introduction of an energy audit on all government institutions. Meanwhile, President Mahinda Rajapakse last week presented to cabinet a memorandum outlining measures to be adopted to address the present crisis. more..

Vicious combination leads to flash floods

June 4 (ML) It was fast, unannouced and went over anything that stood in its path. Flash floods caused by the onset of the south western monsoon displaced over 269,700 persons in nine districts and left at least 14 dead and two missing in the last three days, the National Disaster Relief Services Centre (NDRSC) said. The worst affected area was Kalutara District where the Palindanuwara and Bulathsinhala Divisions were baldly affected. more..

Is Batti blood thirsty?

June 4 (ML) The child had reached the age to speak but did not. The worried parents took the baby to specialist physicians but to no avail. They visited temples too making vows and performing rituals but there was no sign of improvement. One day the child suddenly stuttered ‘Amma’ — Mother. The mother came running. The child repeated ‘Amma.’ She rushed to bring her husband. Both parents were thrilled to hear their child speak. more..

Rosie, Chandrani at receiving end of police wrath

June 4 (BL) UNP Parliamentarian Chandarani Bandara and Working Committee Member Rosy Senanayake who were participating in last afternoon’s protest in Colombo were allegedly verbally abused by the OIC of the Bambalapitiya Police station, P.I. Upul Senivirathne. Speaking to The Bottom Line, Bandara said that the OIC had shouted at her in abusive and profane language, although she clearly stated that she was an UNP MP taking part in the protest. more..

Oil exploration should not be left to politicians - Survey

June 4 (BL) Sri Lanka’s prospects of discovering offshore oil may be getting brighter by the day, but a massive majority of the people (83%) say that the Government shouldn’t be in charge of oil exploration! This is the end result of a recent poll conducted for business magazine LMD, by TNS Lanka. “Most people participating in TNS Lanka’s islandwide survey believe that this country will soon join the ranks of oil-producing nations. more..

How page one proof was taken to Temple Trees

June 4 (BL) Let me tell you what happened to me in November 1994. As a senior Deputy Editor I was in charge of the night edition of the Daily News that night as Editor Manik de Silva was hospitalised. I had to cover an urgent press conference Prime Minister Chandrika Kumaratunga held at 7:00 that night at Visumpaya. The briefing was held, to reply to the UNP charge of collusion between the SLFP and the LTTE, in the assassination of Presidential candidate Gamini Dissanayake. more..

EPC begins official duties

June 4 (BL) The first ever Eastern Provincial Council (EPC), elected on May 10, will commence its official duties in Trincomalee today. The historical session of the EPC will take place at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat, situated at Inner Harbour road in Trincomalee, today. The Council headed by Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillaiyan, will commence at 10.00 a.m. The first item in the agenda will be reading of the Proclamation of the Governor. more..

Low HIV prevalence but high risk

June 4 (PN) Living with the HIV virus can be extremely frustrating in Sri Lanka, just ask those infected by it. "You are totally shunned," Princy Mangalika, an HIV-positive Sri Lankan, told IRIN. "You can't attend family functions, work or live in your own village; your children can't even go to school." Mangalika, executive director of the HIV/AIDS advocacy grassroots group, Lanka Plus, said the stigma stemmed from ignorance. more..

Communal violence disrupts relief efforts in the east

June 4 (IRIN) Communal clashes and ethnic tension between Tamils and Muslims have been disrupting humanitarian work in the eastern Batticaloa District of Sri Lanka since 22 May, UN and other relief workers said. Two Tamils and five Muslims have been killed. Relief officials told IRIN they were reluctant to send staff into the field for fear of getting caught up in the violence. "I have been unable to travel out since 22 May," more..

Sri Lanka rail blast injures 17

June 4 (LBO) A blast ripped through a suburban rail track in Sri Lanka's capital Colombo in the early morning rush hour Wednesday, injuring at least 17, authorities and eyewitnesses said. Military spokesman Udaya Nanayakkara said the explosion had gone off on a rail track near Wasala Road in Dehiwela, south of Colombo. The security media centre said at least 17 had been injured. more..

Sri Lanka leader says arable land sown with terrorist mines

June 4 (FAO) Food production in Sri Lanka has been affected not only by high oil prices, bad weather and storage and distribution problem but by terrorism as well, the island's president Mahinda Rajapaksa has said. Addressing the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) conference on food security in Rome, Rajapaksa called on the UN organisation to take steps to develop regional buffer stocks of staple food to ensure enough stocks during times of crisis. more..

S.B. withdraws FR petition on loss of his MP position

June 4 (LD) The Supreme Court yesterday allowed S.B. Dissanayake to withdraw a fundamental rights petition that he had filed, challenging the loss of his parliamentary seat. The SC noted the submission made by Mr. Dissanayake's counsel that his client had vacated his seat not on the basis that he was disqualified from being a MP, but because he had been absent from sittings for a continuous period of three months without leave of parliament. more..

President to secure a second term before next parliamentary poll

June 4 (LNP) President Mahinda Rajapaksa is likely to call for a presidential election immediately after the conclusion of elections to Provincial Councils which will go on till early 2009. An influential section of the ruling coalition is of the opinion that he should face the people before the next parliamentary poll scheduled for 2010. The presidential election is scheduled for 2011. more..

There is a military solution to terror - says Wall Street Journal

June 4 (LNP) Very strongly arguing against what it called `the mindless` and irrelevant phrase that there is no `military solution` to an insurgency the influential Wall Street Journal said in an editorial that President Mahinda Rajapksa of Sri Lanka now promises victory over terrorism by the end of year even as the LTTE continue to launch high profile terrorist attacks. more..

Lanka moots Global Food Crisis Fund

June 4 (SAMN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa Tuesday urged the global community to seriously consider setting up a Global Food Crisis Fund. Addressing the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation’s World Food Summit in Rome, President Rajapaksa said the Fund will have contributions from all countries and from large business organisations that transcend geographical boundaries, and from financial institutions, arms manufacturers and philanthropists of the world, among others. more..

Teachers boycott A/L evaluation

June 4 (SAMN) The lack of applications received for 2008 A/Level paper evaluations has compelled the Examinations Department to extend the May 31 deadline by a further week, the JVP affiliated Ceylon Teachers’ Service Union (CTSU) said. The CTSU in April threatened to boycott the 2008 A/Level paper evaluation process unless the long-standing salary anomalies in the principal/teacher services were rectified before May 31. more..

No talks without Norway: LTTE

June 4 (SAMN) The LTTE Tuesday ruled out the possibility of having peace talks with the government without the participation of Norwegian facilitators. LTTE Peace Secretariat Head, S. Pulidevan said while the organisation had been in close contact with key Norwegian figures such as Erik Solheim and the Norwegian Ambassador, it would wait for the facilitators to be granted access to Kilinochchi to further discuss issues relating to future peace talks with the government. more..

Sinhala, Muslim students for Jaffna Uni

June 4 (SAMN) UGC Chairman Professor Gamini Samaranayaka said Tuesday Sinhala and Muslim students would be admitted to the Jaffna and Eastern Universities. The minimum ‘Z – score’ based on last year’s G. C. E. (A/L) results for the 2008/09 academic year would be released today at the UGC, he said. The UGC expects to admit 19,650 students to 14 universities, three campuses (Vavuniya campus of the Jaffna University, Horana Sripali Campus of the Colombo University and Trincomalee Campus of Eastern University) and more..

LTTE rejects claims about Peace Secretary's house arrest

June 4 (PTI) The LTTE has dismissed claims that the Director of its 'Peace Secretariat' has been put under house arrest on the direction of the outfit's chief V Prabhakaran, terming such reports as "propaganda" by the Sri Lankan government. "This is a propaganda of the Sri Lankan government. (Seevaratnam) Pulidevan (LTTE Peace Secretariat director) continues to work in the same position," Tamil Tigers' political head B Nadesan was quoted as saying in a report. more..

President Rajapaksa meets Brazilian President Lula da Silva

June 4 (GDI) President Rajapaksa met President Lula da Silva of Brazil on the margins of the FAO conference on world food security, to discuss issues of relevance and importance to both the countries. President Rajapaksa explained that one the most compelling problems for Sri Lanka has been the unforeseen rise of the prices of oil and that this, in turn, has created a sense of unpredictability in the country's economy and the global economy in general. more..

President meets Japanese Premier on margins of FAO Conference

June 4 (GDI) During the two day visit of President Rajapaksa, currently attending the High Level Conference on World Food Security focusing on the challenges of climate change and bioenergy, met the Prime Minister of Japan Mr. Yasuo Fukuda, on the margins of the Conference, and the two leaders discussed at length issues of mutual interest. Mr. Fukuda said he was heartened about the successful conduct of elections in the Eastern Province and more..

Sri Lankans slapped with new contract clause

June 4 (C365) Sri Lanka Cricket contracted players will be required to play a minimum of 75% of domestic games following the addition of a clause to their contracts. The move is the latest in an effort to improve the standard of domestic cricket in the island nation after a five-team Inter-Provincial tournament was established last year. President of the Cricketers' Association, Sidath Wettimuny, said he expected the international players would be able to juggle their commitments with the national side. more..

'Sri Lanka can't achieve 2008 inflation target'

June 4 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's central bank conceded on Wednesday that it will fail to meet its 2008 inflation target, blaming external pressures on domestic prices. It had targetted inflation of between 10 percent and 11 percent by end of 2008, levels which financial markets have long factored in as unachievable. "We will not be able to achieve 10-11 percent target by end of the year," more..

Statement by Prof Rajiva Wijesinha Secretary General of the Secretariat

June 4 (PISL) Let me begin by extending our sympathies to the people of China and Myanmar who have suffered from the recent natural disasters. Despite its own difficulties Sri Lanka tried to provide some assistance, not just because we have been beneficiaries of such in times of difficulty, but also because as the High Commissioner said, this is the duty of governments. Sri Lanka, in wishing the High Commissioner well for her future, takes this opportunity to thank her, her office, and more..

Sri Lankan Response to the Report of Philip Alston

June 4 (PISL) The Eighth Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council is currently being held at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. During the Interactive dialogue held today on the reports of the UN Special Rapporteurs, Sri Lanka responded to the report of Mr. Philip Alston, Special Rapporteur on Extra-Judicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions. Given below is the statement made on this occasion by Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha, more..

Police seek help to track train bomb suspect

June 4 (LBO) Sri Lankan police Wednesday said they were hunting for a 29-year-old man suspected to be involved in a bomb attack on an early morning commuter train on the coastal track near to the capital Colombo that wounded 18 people. Police released a picture of the suspect, identified as Jatheesan Balasubramaniyam, from Wattala, a suburb north of Colombo. A statement from the security media centre said police were seeking assistance from the public to arrest the suspect. more..

Rice consignment released to cooperatives

June 4 (GDI) The Government yesterday released imported white rice and red nadu rice which arrived from the Wanni stipulating a ceiling price of Rs. 60 per kilo. The rice will be distributed by through C-operatives, Sathosa branches and Co-op Cities islandwide. Trade, Marketing Development, Co-operatives and Consumer Services Minister Bandula Gunawardena took steps yesterday to release 8,000 mts of white rice imported from Myanmar and Thailand more..

Gotabhaya is the real traitor - Ranil

June 4 (LD) Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has accused Gotabhaya Rajapaksa of being the real traitor, after having abandoned his troops and fled the country. Mr. Wickremesinghe said that he would refer to the Defence Secretary by name without fear, although the media has been warned against mentioning his name. He said that the worst thing that could happen to you as journalists is that you would be abducted for about two or three days for mentioning Gotabhaya Rajapaksa's name. more..

Special Projects Ministry to close down

June 4 (LD) The government has decided to close down with effect from June 6th, the Ministry of Special Projects that had been specially created for Mahinda Wijesekara, one of the 17 members of the Karu Jayasuriya faction. Mr. Wijesekara confirmed today (June 04th) about the closure as decided by the President. He received the Posts and Telecommunications portfolio that fell vacant after SLMC leader Rauff Hakeem left the government. more..

New vistas for rubber cultivation

June 4 (DN) The Plantation Industries Ministry has initiated a project to introduce rubber cultivation to the Monaragala district, Plantation Industries Minister D.M. Jayarathne said. Rubber will be cultivated in 750 hectares in five Divisional Secretariat divisions in the Moneragala District. Bibile, Moneragala, Badalkumbura, Madulla and Medagama Divisional Secretariat Divisions have been selected for the new project at the initial stage. more..

Disease prevention steps in flood affected areas

June 4 (DN) The Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry has made arrangements to prevent possible outbreaks of epidemics after floods subside in the affected areas under the direction of Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, a Ministry spokesman said. He said the Ministry will launch a joint programme in co-ordination with all Provincial Health Officers in the flood affected areas. more..

Norwegian embassy under threat: Oslo

June 4 (DM) The Norwegian Foreign Ministry has listed the Norwegian Embassy in Sri Lanka as being under threat of a “terrorist” attack, Norway’s Aftenposten newspaper reported yesterday. It reported that the Foreign Ministry list also identified five other Norwegian embassies which are said to be under threat of terrorist attack. They include the embassies in Islamabad Afghanistan, Sudan, Algeria and Al-Ram in the Palestinian region. more..

‘Death to America ’ whose wish – SL Govt. or a Minister’s?

June 4 (DM) According to information circulating among the Diplomatic circles in Colombo, the report to be submitted to Washington State Department by the United States Ambassador in Sri Lanka, on the protest campaign ‘Death to America’ organized by the Sri Lanka – Palestine Solidarity Movement, last Friday has started with the name of President Rajapaksa. The reason is, that the first president of the Sri Lanka Palestine Solidarity Movement was Mahinda Rajapaksa, more..

NFF demands Govt. to use force against rabble rousers

June 4 (Island) The National Freedom Front has demanded that the Government use maximum force against those who instigate racial discord in the East. General Secretary of the NFF, Parliamentarian Nandana Gunatilake said there were foreign forces and their NGO lackeys who had lost their livelihood due to the East being liberated from the clutches of the Tigers by the security forces. more..

Shocking state of child health revealed

June 4 (Island) According to the government, among the children less than five years, 13.5 per cent suffered from chronic malnutrition. At least 30 per cent of children less than five years of age suffered from anaemia. The percentage of school children suffering from chronic malnutrition and anaemia had been estimated at 19.6 and 21. Of 33.3 per cent adolescents suffering from acute malnutrition, almost 23 per cent suffer from anaemia, too, more..

The Forgotten Martyr

June 5 (SLW) June 5, 2008: On this day sixty one years ago, Velupillai Kandasamy of Moolai Road, Vaddukoddai, a member of the Government Clerical Service Union (GCSU) was shot dead when the colonial government of the day headed by the Acting British Governor ordered a strike action to be crushed without mercy. The strike action followed the failure of the government to honour some of the promises made to help bring an earlier general strike the previous year to an end. more..

Muslim Aid steps up emergency work in Myanmar

June 5 (MG) As one of the few international aid agencies working on the ground in the cyclone devastated southern delta region of Myanmar, Muslim Aid has teamed up with the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) to provide clean water, dry rations, kitchen utensils and medical aid to thousands of victims. A three-member team from Muslim Aid Sri Lanka (MASL) is addressing one of the most urgent concerns facing survivors - the need for clean drinking water. more..

Is Lake House government property?

June 5 (LG) According to media reports, it appears that Lakshman Hulugalle and Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa have some differences of opinion as to whether the Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd., (popularly referred to as "Lake House") is government property or not, and whether its employees are bound by the rules which apply to state employees. The particulars given below should help the public to ascertain where the truth lies. more..

Buddhism is being made a farce

June 5 (LG) I read an article in the newspapers the other day regarding the most sacred Buddhist temple in India being managed by Hindu Priests and many concerns were expressed by the writer. I do not see why he has to be so worried as we Buddhists after all have made Hinduism also a part of our religion. When you visit a temple now you wonder if you are in a Hindu Kovil or at a Buddhist temple as such a lot of Hindu gods are being displayed and worshipped. more..

Situation in Mannar

June 5 (LG) I’m a Catholic Priest, of the Diocese of Mannar, in Northern Sri Lanka, where war continues to rage today, as it had for almost three decades now, with civilians caught in the crossfire between the Government Forces and the LTTE, says Rev. Fr. Jeyabalan Croos, on behalf of Pax Romana, during the interactive dialogue with Representative of the Secretary General on Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons and the Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary executions. more..

War and Human Rights

June 5 (LG) There is no war in Sri Lanka. And there are no human rights in the world. In Sri Lanka a terrorist group that has the blessings of the western countries that pay lip service to eradication of terrorism against other cultures has taken up arms against the Sri Lankan state and wants to establish a separate state that was the wish of SJV Chelvanayakam and the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK) and later of the TULF. more..