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Political programme of Tamils in the current context of Tamil homeland

Aug 7 (LG) "It is not easy to travel the path of politico-diplomatic path, the journey would be long, arduous and would require immense patience," Selvarasa Pathmanathan, the LTTE Leader pointed out in his blog last week. While stressing the importance of the political programme, this week he discusses the issues related to political programme. When formulating the political programme for the next phase of our struggle, more..

Pakistan search for winning formula

Aug 7 (CI) A series of lopsided fortunes is dead in terms of a contest. So what to do the teams play for? For Pakistan there is only pride to play for, a position which is becoming all-too-familiar for this team in recent times. In their previous ODI series, against Australia in the UAE, Pakistan managed a face-saving win in the dead match. Given their current predicament and lack of one-day direction, they cannot waste any opportunity to find some form. more..

New Tamil Tiger head arrested - Sri Lanka media

Aug 7 (Reuters) The new head of the remnants of the Tamil Tigers, the separatist group defeated by the Sri Lankan military after a 25-year war, has been arrested in Thailand, Sri Lankan media reported on Thursday. Local television channels said Selvarajah Pathmanathan, who was wanted on two Interpol warrants, was arrested in Thailand, citing military officials. more..

Tight security for Kiwis in Sri Lanka

Aug 7 (Stuff) Gun-toting security squads of up to 800 will protect the New Zealand cricketers on their tour of Sri Lanka. New Zealand Cricket Players' Association chief executive Heath Mills said that between 400 and 800 police and security guards would be at the grounds on match days during the month-long tour, which begins this weekend in Colombo. About 200 security personnel would be on duty at the team's hotel. more..

Strong Sri Lankan bowling worries Vettori

Aug 7 (CI) Daniel Vettori has said he's aware it is not only Sri Lanka's spinners that his side will have to be wary of, but also the quick bowlers who were instrumental in the Test series victory over Pakistan. "Spin is going to play an important part but I think from watching the Pakistan series, the seam bowlers have played an important role," Vettori told reporters after arriving in Sri Lanka for a six-week tour. more..

Sri Lanka - Cuba relations strengthened

Aug 7 (ISRIA) Geographic distances, as well as cultural, ethnic and religious differences, have never become an obstacle preventing our relations of friendship and cooperation from being increasingly solid, said Cuban Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister, Marcos Rodriguez at the ceremony in Havana to commemorate 50 years of diplomatic relations between Cuba and Sri Lanka on July 29. more..

British High Commissioner visits Yala National Park

Aug 7 (ISRIA) Following the UK's decision to remove advice against travel to Yala, Arugam Bay and Trincomalee in early July the British High Commissioner with his family visited Yala National Park in the East (block 1) to observe the wild elephants and leopards. “We no longer discourage British holidaymakers from enjoying leopard-spotting at Yala National Park, surfing at Arugam Bay or admiring Trincomalee harbour, more..

Nipuna, who escaped Police death trap

Emergency extended to deal with underworld-PM

Aug 7 (BBC) Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka told parliament that the government is determined to take tough action against underworld gangs. “Although the guns in the north were silenced there is still a need to silence the guns of the underworld” said Prime Minister Wickramanayaka while proposing to parliament the extension of emergency regulations for a month. more..

Returning home in safety

Aug 7 (MAG) When a MAG Community Liaison team first went to Marathanmadhu in April 2009, the village had been deserted for over 18 months. Sixty-year-old Mr Soosai Marathin, the owner of a rice mill, accompanied them to inform the team about what happened in the village during the conflict – it was the first time he had been back since September 2007. Following the survey conducted by MAG, the village was declared as having a low risk of mines and unexploded ordnance. more..

Arrest of K. Pathmanathan (KP) in Thailand – strongly rumored

Aug 7 (AT) There is a strong unconfirmed rumor to say that Thai authorities have arrested LTTE’s self styled leader Kumaran Padmanathan in Bangkok on Thursday morning. Unconfirmed reports further revealed that Thai Intelligence officials have requested the Sri Lanka Intelligence to dispatch mug shots of Pathmanathan. Sri Lanka Government officials when contacted said that they heard of such rumor of the arrest, but refused to confirm. more..

Embassy of Sri Lanka hosts “Peace forum: A new vision for peace in the 21st century”

Aug 7 (IL) A special gathering of peacemakers explored the theme, “A New Vision for Peace in the 21st Century,” held at the residence of the Ambassador of Sri Lanka on July 30th 2009 in Washington DC. The Sri Lankan Embassy partnering with Universal Peace Federation (UPF) International and UPF-USA presented a program which introduced the core principles and practices that can facilitate the creation of a world in which . more..

Resettlement in record time: Colombo

Aug 7 (Hindu) Two days before the election to the local bodies in Jaffna and Vavuniya, in which the pro-LTTE TNA is taking part, the new Tiger chief Selvarasa Pathmanathan known as KP on Thursday said the LTTE cadres cannot engage in any political activity “at this point of time”. The statement, posted on his website, under the title “Some thoughts on a political programme of Eelam Tamils in the current context of our homeland” coincided with more..

Sri Lankan military delegation visits NDA

Aug 7 (IE) A Group of 23 senior military officers from Sri Lanka led by Brig KJ Wijetilleke, the chief instructor of Defence Services Command and Staff College of Sri Lanka, visited the National Defence Academy (NDA), Khadakwasla, on Tuesday. The visit was part of their tour to various important military training institutions in the country. NDA Commandant Vice Admiral RK Dhowan, briefed the delegation on various training curriculum of the academy. more..

New Tiger Chief “KP” arrested and brought to Sri Lanka

Aug 7 (DBS) Selvarasah Pathmanathan alias “KP” a.k.a Kumaran Pathmanathan was arrested by the Police in Thailand on Aug 5th and brought to Sri Lanka on Thursday August 6th. KP in his capacity as General-Secretary of the re-structured LTTE was the virtual global tiger chief. According to informed sources KP was arrested by the Thai Police at a house in the suburbs of Bangkok after nightfall on August 5th. more..

Lessons for Sri Lanka; one man's mistake is another man's profit

Aug 7 (LBO) At this social function in Male, capital of Maldives, everyone was sipping soft drinks, coke, fanta, soda and what not. In this Islamic Republic, liquor is a taboo, but not tobacco. So, many were enjoying their cigarettes competing to fill the air with circles of smoke. I was introduced to this gentleman who was described as a leading businessman by my host. more..

Sri Lankan plantation unions undermine workers’ pay

Aug 7 (wsws) Amid the global economic downturn, Sri Lankan plantation trade unions are collaborating with employers in pay negotiations to keep the income of hundreds of thousands of tea, rubber and coconut workers at poverty levels. The previous two-year agreement between unions and the Ceylon Employers Federation (CEF) expired in March and talks over a new agreement have dragged on since February. more..

Resettlement begins in Jaffna

Aug 7 (GDI) The Government has taken steps to resettle 3,112 persons of 1,051 families who werre in welfare centres in Jaffna. 1,094 persons of 439 families from the Settikulam Village in Vavuniya left for their home towns. The displaced persons of Jaffna also received an opportunity to return to their villages. Accordingly, the “Uthuru Wasanthaya” 180-day Accelerated Programme was unveiled. more..

Towards a peaceful poll tomorrow

Aug 7 (GDI) The agenda is in place for the peaceful conduct of a free and fair poll tomorrow. All measures are afoot to minimise violence, Elections Chief, Dayananda Dishanayake told a media briefing. Referring to the production of the national identity card to exercise the franchise, the Elections Chief said the passport, the driving license, the railway permit or the adult’s identity can also be produced for voting. more..

IMF has confidence in Sri Lanka -Deputy Finance Minister

Aug 7 (GDI) The IMF which has faith and confidence in Sri Lanka's monetary and fiscal management policies approved the US $ 2.6 billion loan,claimed Deputy Finance Minister, Ranjith Siyambalapitiya. Expressing his views in Parliament on Thursday, the Deputy Finance Minister said the government had increased its foreign reserves and also controlled fluctuations in foreign exchange rates." more..

Tamils to endure three years of barbed-wire incarceration

Aug 7 (LG) Tamils and human rights activists are panicked and shocked at Colombo’s decision to keep the Tamils in internment camps in Vavuniya and even more so with New Delhi’s direct support to keep the Tamils in the camps for the next three years. Sri Lanka once again hoodwinks the international community, including the UN, with the false promise to resettle the Tamils, who are now held in camps behind barbed-wires with more..

Political violence in Sri Lanka - Part 4

Aug 7 (LG) The ruling elites played the ethnic card to prop up their political fortunes. By turning the class struggle into one of ethnic hatred, they distracted the people from the economic basis of their exploitation. The left failed to counter this blatant chauvinism. In their attempts to achieve parliamentary power they eventually bought into the opportunistic ethnic politics. This led to the eventual debasement of the traditional left, the JVP and the Tamil left groups. more..

“Final court of justice in Sri Lanka”

Aug 7 (LG) Supreme Court of Sri Lanka was created in 1972, after the adoption of a new Constitution, replacing the Constitution Adopted on severing connections with the British Empire. Sri Lankan judicial system is complex and a blend of both Common law and civil law. It is the highest court in the country. It is the highest and final superior court of record in the Republic and shall exercise matters in respect of Constitution, Fundamental rights, more..

132 suspects in Beruwala clash still in remand

Aug 7 (PSM) The 132 suspects in connection with the Beruwala factional clash that took place recently were further remanded by Kalutara Additional Magistrate Chandani Dias. The suspects were produced by the Beruwela Police and they were remanded to fiscal custody till August 17. The prosecution was led by the Police and the suspects were represented by their respective lawyers in Court. more..

President’s pictures so ‘prodigious and precious ’ that they can cover up any lawlessness? -UNP

Aug 7 (UNP) UNP Gen. Secretary, Tissa Attanayake addressing the media, referring to the forthcoming Uva Province and Northern elections ,said the Govt. and its candidates are committing gross violations of the election laws brazenly and un-hesitantly. Not only the President Rajapakse has become a byword allegedly for not respecting the constitution and the laws of the country; more..

Joint rail-bus service for Jaffna bound

Aug 7 (MoD) The Government will shortly commence a joint railway-bus service from the Vavuniya railway station for the benefit of Jaffna bound civilians. Sri Lanka Railways Commercial Superintendent Vijaya Samarasinghe said that trains are currently operated only upto Vavuniya until the reconstruction work of the Northern railway track and stations are completed. "This bus service will fill the long felt needs of the Jaffna civilians until more..

Valachchena Buddhist Temple Restored

Aug 7 (MoD) The ancient Valachchena Buddha Jayanthi Viharaya, administered by historic Dimbulagala monastery was renovated and handed over to the Buddhist clergy during the weekend after the Army took initiative in this connection. Repairs to this Buddhist Vihara were carried out by the Army under the auspices of the Security Forces Commander for the East Major General S M D A Rajapaksha. more..

President ignores Chamal’s objections and dissolves Southern PC

Aug 7 (LNW) The President had dissolved the Southern Provincial Council earlier in the week amidst objections from Minister Chamal Rajapakse and his family members. Chamal had requested President Mahinda Rajapakse not to dissolve the Southern Provincial Council until the conclusion of the Uva Provincial Council elections. Chamal believed an early dissolution of the Southern Provincial Council would have an impact on his son, Shasheendra’s, campaign in the Uva Province. more..

'Dangerous laws under Press Council Act'

Aug 7 (LNW) President’s Counsel Srinath Perera says that there are dangerous laws included in the Press Council Act. “Firstly the Press Council can force a journalist to reveal the source behind a story written. This could be considered as a step taken to suppress the media,” he said. Perera made this statement during a press conference organized by the Platform for Freedom this week. He said, “The government is controlling the media in a very organized manner. more..

'General Sarath Fonseka doesn’t even have the power vested with the head of the Salvation Army'

Aug 7 (LNW) SLFP (M) Wing Leader, Mangala Samaraweera said General Sarath Fonseka who played a key role in defeating the LTTE does not at least possess the powers vested with the Head of the Salvation Army now as the Chief of Defence Staff. Samaraweera made this comment responding to a question posed by a journalist at press conference organized by the SLFP (M) Wing. more..

Philippines defence and armed forces attache to Sri Lanka calls on Commander of the Navy

Aug 7 (MoD) Philippines Non-resident Defence and Armed Forces Attache to Sri Lanka Colonel Alex C Capina called on the Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy Vice Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe at the Naval Headquarters. This is Colonel Capina's first official visit to Sri Lanka upon assuming duties and he functions attached to the Office of the Defence and Armed Forces Attache, Embassy of Phillipines in New Delhi. more..

Dog fight between stalwarts of UPFA in Uva

Aug 7 (LT) More than 10 supporters of Shashindra Rajapaske, the chief ministerial candidate of the UPFA for Uva PC election were injured when there was a confrontation between Shashindra’s supporters and supporters of Minister of Nation Building Jagath Pushpakumara today (6th). Three injured are being treated in hospital and another who was serious has been removed to Embilipitiya Hospital. more..

“Rally against government that destroys free education” – IUSF

Aug 7 (LT) The Inter University Students Federation (IUSF) held a protest campaign near Bodhiya at Pettah yesterday against the manner school term tests were conducted and failure of the government to resolve burning issues in the education sector. A large number of students from all universities in the island participated in the campaign. Sanjeewa Mahesh Kumara speaking on behalf of the IUSF said they were prepared to rally the whole nation to protect education. more..

SC says cannot issue order on two elephant calves

Aug 7 (CT) The Supreme Court has determined that it cannot issue an order for the return of the two elephant calves that have been taken away from the elephant orphanage in Pinnawala. The court was taking up a petition filed by an animal rights group that challenges the cabinet permission given for the removal of the two calves who have now been gifted to Sri Dalada Maligawa. more..

Where did JVP get funds for new party building, asks Minister

Aug 7 (DN) Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka yesterday challenged JVP Parliamentarian Bimal Ratnayake to divulge how the JVP procured funds to construct its four storeyed new party building. He challenged the JVP member in Parliament during an argument after the Minister answered oral questions. The Minister answering a question raised about a meeting held for mineral exporters said the question was not relevant. more..

Celebrating peoples of Yore

Aug 7 (DN) Sri Lanka's indigenous folk of Adi Vasi Veddha community takes a special place among the indigenous peoples of the world. The reason being that they display a racial connotation that depict an important transition of the human evolutionary process. Adi Vasi communities living in Sri Lanka's Eastern region of Mahiyangana-Bintenna, Dambana, Maha Oya, Pollebedde, Bibila, Nil Gala-Ratu Gala, Panama, Polonnaruwa, Dimbulagala and Anuradhapura more..

'Significant drop in polls violations'

Aug 7 (DN) Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake said that compared to the last five elections, the number of election related violence this time around has recorded a significant drop, as also the violation of election laws which augurs well for future elections. “This time also we will act firmly against those attempting to create disturbances and we will suspend counting at polling centres until such unruly elements are removed,” more..

Polls in North: 1,000 IDPs disqualified

Aug 7 (DM) Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake yesterday said that applications of 1,027 IDPs out of 6000 who applied to be registered as eligible voters in the local government election in the North had been rejected as some of them had engaged in dual registration while others had forged signatures. Mr. Dissanayake told a news conference that some politicians had been behind forging the signatures of Grama Niladharies and in the dual registration. more..

Mangy wants extra judicial killings stopped

Aug 7 (Island) Sri Lanka Freedom Party, Mahajana Wing, leader Mangala Samaraweera MP wants extra judicial killings to be stopped immediately. "Underworld leaders arrested by the police must be prosecuted according to the law of country. There is no doubt that the underworld should be eliminated, but the people would not approve the government’s way of eliminatinbg it", he said. more..

‘Male Matron’ with stripes held in V’niya hospital

Aug 7 (Island) The police investigating a secret escape route for LTTE suspects and their families, from welfare centres in the Vavuniya region, have made a major breakthrough in their investigations. The police had arrested a suspect trying to bribe his way through. The suspect had joined a group of IDPs brought to the Vavuniya Hospital and then made an attempt to leave the hospital with the help of some employees. more..

Health Ministry ignored local discovery of Bti

Aug 7 (Island) Prior to the Bti bacteria being brought from Cuba to control the spread of dengue, it was discovered in Sri Lanka but the Health Ministry ignored these findings. Lecturer at the Agricultural Faculty of the Rajarata University M. C. M. Shakkeel said the Sri Lanka Scientific Development Organization and the Health Ministry had been informed over three years ago that the Bti bacterium was effective in controlling dengue and could be manufactured in Sri Lanka. more..

Refugees still held as Sri Lanka holds polls

Choksy calls for talks between President and TNA

Aug 7 (Island) UNP MP K.N. Choksy called for talks between President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the TNA on the national issue while urging all political parties to support government efforts to restore permanent peace. Making a statement at Thursday’s emergency debate, he said, "With the end of the civil war, it occurs to me whether we should continue to call this debate the "Emergency Debate." Yet, there is good reason to do so. more..

Korea Routs Sri Lanka 122-54

Aug 7 (KT) The South Korean team cruised through to the second round of the Asian Basketball Championship, routing Sri Lanka 122-54 Friday in Tianjin, China. In its second game of Group A, swingmen Lee Kyu-sup and Bang Sung-yoon hit eight 3-pointers each, to catapult head coach Hur Jae's side to a 2-0 mark. Korean players made 25 3s in 51 attempts, and Lee finished with game-high 28 points, while Bang added 24. more..

Sri Lanka provides housing for war veterans while U.S. leaves them homeless

Aug 7 (AT) Access to permanent housing is consistently the number one service need identified by those concerned with United States veteran issues. Further, reports indicate that armed services personnel returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are seeking help with housing sooner than past cohorts of (Vietnam or ’91 Gulf War) veterans. Housing programs targeted to veterans are limited in capacity. more..

KP arrested, brought to Colombo and he has “Begun to Vomit”

Aug 7 (AT) Sri Lanka confirms that LTTE’s remnant group leader Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP has been arrested, brought to Colombo and now he is ‘vomiting’ to his Sri Lankan interrogators. A source very close to the Sri Lanka President’s office told Asian Tribune that on Thursday President Mahinda Rajapaksa received a call from the Defence Ministry that KP has been arrested and brought to Colombo. more..

Police pressurise to settle

Aug 7 (DM) The parents of SLIIT student Nipuna Ramanayake who was abducted and brutally assaulted allegedly by an armed group of policemen and Colombo Crimes Division Head Vas Gunawardena’s son yesterday appealed to President Mahinda Rajapaksa to intervene and bring about justice. The parents told Daily Mirror they had been receiving telephone calls from various people requesting them to come to a settlement with the SSP’s family and more..

UK slams door on Moulana family

Aug 7 (DM) Britain has rejected the visa applications made by Western Province Governor Alavi Moulana’s son and grandchildren. “The British High Commission in Colombo hasn’t given us a reason for rejecting the applications,” Mr. Moulana told Daily Mirror. “We are not authorized to give visa information to third parties. Therefore I cannot comment on whether the visa applications have been rejected or approved,” more..

Dalada Perahera concludes successfully

Aug 7 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday extended his profound thanks on behalf of the Government and people to all those involved in the conduct of the first Dalada Perahera since the unification of the country after 30 years, in such grand splendour and it's successful conclusion. The President was speaking after receiving the traditional scroll from the Diyawadana Nilame declaring that the Esala Perahera has been successfully concluded, more..

Send him home

Aug 7 (DM) Not all fathers are responsible for the escapades of their sons. But this is no escapade but a crime – in fact two – abduction and brutal assault. And the father’s team is very much involved. Worst still the father is trying to cover up the whole episode with a sob story saying it is a case of ‘mistaken identity’. Our yesterday’s lead story on how Colombo Crime Division Chief Vas Gunawardena and his son tried to get away after committing a heinous crime more..