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Pathetic state of mighty Genrel Fonseka: Tool in the hands of political rejects

Dec 1 (TC) General Sarath Fonseka has announced his candidature for the forthcoming Presidential Election: the UNP, the JVP and the party called the SLFP [M] have announced their support for General Fonseka as their ‘Common Candidate’. By announcing such support, these `parties’ have clearly and unequivocally admitted that they are well aware that they have so miserably failed to win the confidence of the people, more..

Presidential elections in Sri Lanka, between hope for democracy and fears of fraud

Dec 1 (AN) The announcement that presidential elections will take place on 26 January next year will provide an opportunity to strengthen peace and national reconciliation in Sri Lanka on condition that the process is not marred by fraud and corruption, said Fr Reid Shelton Fernando, a Catholic priest and expert on local affairs. Whilst the list of candidates will be made public on 17 December, the main contenders are already known; they are more..

Sri Lanka’s Presidential; a battle between conservatives and liberal democrats

Dec 1 (LP) Sri Lanka is heading towards an early Presidential in which President Mahinda Rajapakse faces an unexpected challenge from his ex-Army Commander General Sarath Fonseka. Not far back, the merciless political and military leadership shared by these two associates led the state to wipe out the 26-year separatist threat from the violent Tamil nationalists. Their military action is highly criticized especially by Western super powers on human rights aspects and more..

EC sets election process in motion

Dec 1 (Hindu) As all eyes in the island nation are set on the January 26 presidential election at which the incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa is being confronted among others, by the pre-maturely retired Army General Sarath Fonseka, Election Commission has set in motion the process for the parliamentary election scheduled to be held by April. A new gazette notification by the Election Commission denominated a number of Parliamentary seats for the Northern Province. more..

'Fonseka, even if elected, will be a temporary Prez'

Dec 1 (AT) Even before the first ballot is cast in the Prez election next month, Mano Ganesan, the leader of the Western People’s Front has a startling forecast. ‘Sarath Fonseka, the challenger, will be a ‘temporary Prez even if people vote for him’, he said in a freewheeling interview. Mano Ganesan wrote a long letter listing out his demands to the General who is entering the fray as the common candidate of the opposition. more..

Sri Lanka new port to use solar, wind power

Dec 1 (LBO) A new port being built in Hambantota in southern Sri Lanka will use renewable energy for some of its power requirements, Sri Lanka Ports Authority chairman Priyath Wickrama said. "This is going to be green port," he said. "We're going to use solar power for all street lighting. It will be an environmentally-friendly port." Wickrama said the SLPA was also studying the potential for using wind power for some of the port's other power needs. more..

Rain fails to dampen Sri Lanka Under-19s

Dec 1 (CI) Chathura Peiris and Udara Jayasundera were the stars for Sri Lanka Under-19 as they got off to a winning start in the tournament, beating Bangladesh Under-19 by 20 runs via the D/L method in a rain-marred tie in Dambulla. No less was the contribution of Rumesh Buddika who scored an unbeaten half-century to hand Bangladesh their second defeat on the trot, having lost to Pakistan Under-19 the previous day. more..

EPRLF-P Wary of Fonseka’s military background

Dec 1 (SLNN) Presidential candidate and former army commander Sarath Fonseka is losing support from some Tamil political parties because of his military background. The latest to join the team of supporters for President Mahinda Rajapaksa in the upcoming presidential election is the EPRLF-P. “We want to maintain the democratic tradition,” says EPRLF-P leader T. Sritharan. more..

Balavarnam eyewitness 'fear for life'

Dec 1 (BBC) The eyewitness of an alleged police brutality in Colombo says she feared for her life after testifying before courts against police officers. Renu Gunathilake has witnessed the brutal killing of a psychological impaired person allegedly by police officers off the Bambalapitiya beach in Colombo a month ago. "I am very afraid of my life. Because I gave evidence against the police they can hire others to kill me," she told more..

DFCC Bank stake sold by Galleon

Dec 1 (LBO) Sri Lankan shares ended higher Monday with trading boosted by the sale of shares in DFCC by the Galleon hedge fund of billionaire Raj Rajaratnam, facing insider dealing charges in the US, brokers said. The All Share Price Index closed at 2,913.39, up 1.20 percent (34.43 points) while the Milanka Price Index of more liquid stocks closed at 3,326.08, up 1.31 percent (43.12 points). Turnover was 1.8 billion rupees, more..

General is now with 'LTTE camp'

Dec 1 (BBC) The former military commander is currently with the Tamil Tigers camp, a senior Sri Lankan government minster has accused. Transport Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said there could be a threat to Gen Sarath Fonseka's life "from his own camp". The minister was responding to claims by former chief of defence staff (CDS) that his life is in danger as result of government reducing his security. more..

General’s Son in law claims 100 million dollars from Asian tribune for defamation

Dec 1 (LeN) Dununa Tilakaratne has forwarded two separate letters of demand through his Lawyer Charitha N. Galhena on 27th Nov. against Asian Tribune website for its publication of articles which are allegedly defamatory of the General Sarath Fonseka and his family. The letters claiming damages in a sum of US Dollars five million each has been demanded from the writer of the article, K.T.Rajasingham and the Asian Tribune. more..

Lankan Tamils in TN going home soon

Dec 1 (PTI) The Sri Lankan Government would send Tamils living in camps to their respective places in the island nation by January 2010 as per schedule, a top official of the Sri Lankan High Commission said here today. "After the decimation of LTTE in March this year, normalcy returned and the remaining 1.23 lakh people currently living in camps will be sent back to their respective places in another two months", Sri Lankan Deputy High Commissioner in Southern India, more..

Sri Lanka Apparel Delegation visits UK

Dec 1 (IL) Garments of Sri Lanka Delegation to United Kingdom conducted a successful tour of business appointments with UK buyers for apparel in Manchester and London during 24th, 26th and 27th of November 2009. The Sri Lanka High Commission’s Trade Division together with the Export Development Board, the European Chamber of Commerce and the East Midlands Textile Association organized a series of buyer – seller appointments more..

President is a true democrat - Lakshman Yapa

Dec 1 (GDI) “President Mahinda Rajapaksa is a true democrat and not a dictator as mistaken by Gen Fonseka", Media Minister Lakshman Yapa Abewardana told a news conference held at the Department of information today. (30) Minister Abewardena said President Mahinda Rajapaksa after winning the election in January will embark upon a massive economic drive to make Sri Lanka an economically sound Nation. more..

Ageing population in Sri Lanka

The Danger of the General

Dec 1 (AT) Sri Lanka seems to be going through some unusual times. What appeared as a bright future for the country just six months ago, after defeating the LTTE, is now clouded with doubt, intrigue and uncertainty. No doubt that the country will come out of this crisis, as it did in previous times, perhaps much stronger. But it will be at an unnecessary cost and strain. But it will be at an unnecessary cost and strain. more..

An (Apparent) military coup in Sri Lanka – Part Three

Dec 1 (LG) Politicking and Boot-licking: Service officers do know what they are required do while in uniform with regard to politics. The very first thing they get on their first day as a cadet is a book of Orders, which let him or her know Dos and Don’ts. I will put down the relevant couple of orders, just for starters, “Ignorance is NOT taken as an Excuse’ and ‘You will NOT discuss Politics or Women’. more..

The three-fold path

Dec 1 (LG) Karunanidhi is most merciful. He has demanded Indian citizenship for Sri Lankan refugees in Tamil Nadu. Jayalalithaa says he is thereby “trivialising” the Tamil struggle in Lanka. But trivia is good for Alzheimer’s. It can irrigate brain cells. Intellectuals feign contempt for trivia. Gossips love it. In modern politics, nothing can rival Churchill trivia. The prime minister walked about naked in his room and dictated letters in his bathtub. more..

Personal discipline and institutional sacraments

Dec 1 (LG) A profound logic. Executive presidency, many say so, is a bad institution, so the holder of the position naturally becomes a bad president, if he was already not bad. Therefore, it is the presidency; not really the president. In other words the gist of this logic, simply, is that the president is an innocent victim, if he was already not innocent, of the presidency. The way out, and the only way, is either to make presidency a good institution through reform or abolish it altogether. more..

Editorial: Sri Lankan drama

Dec 1 (Hindu) To say that the decision by major opposition parties to field Sarath Fonseka, the prematurely retired general, as their consensus candidate in the January 26 presidential election against the incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa is opportunist is to state the obvious. The more serious question is what kind of political and ideological message the UNP, the JVP, and the SLFP (M) are sending to the people, more..

Stop the Mob-O-Cracy from spreading

Dec 1 (LG) Whether presidential candidates who would present themselves for election could be classified in Marx’s definition of ‘representatives of the oppressing class’ is debatable but a gang/gangs of goons has surfaced that have taken upon themselves the task of oppressing people, even before elections, by wrecking meetings of opposition parties. These events have been recorded on camera and shown on TV. more..

Is Sri Lanka Crazy Enough to Elect a Retired General as President?

Dec 1 (IL) I was very fortunate to have been in Sri Lanka during the final days of the military war against the LTTE. Like all of us, I was relieved that the terrorist violence, replete with its deranged suicide bombers, was finally over. Also like all of us, I looked forward to the day when the Government could get its act together and establish a unified country and a prolonged period of peace. more..

LTTE : The ghosts are after you

Dec 1 (AT) For most the fall of the LTTE and the death of Prabakaran was treated not only with shock but it essentially put an end to decades of terror upon an entire country that extended globally creating an empire that used foul & wicked means to fill its deadly kitty. It was thought that the elimination of the upper tiers of the LTTE leadership, the surrendering of remaining LTTE cadres & gradual arrest of the remaining hardcore LTTE fighters was more..

'He saved the country once, he is there again to save it once more'

Dec 1 (UNP) Anoma Fonseka, wife of Army Commander General Sarath Fonseka who is also the Presidential candidate for the forthcoming Presidential elections, said, her husband made the supreme sacrifices to win the war against the LTTE, the world’s deadliest terrorist outfit. Now, he has come forward again to be a winner in the best interests of the country and rescue it. The General who was once extolled by the President as a great war Hero and more..

The electoral competition to be statesmanlike

Dec 1 (NPC) One of the ironies of the end of the war was the escalation in some aspects of security, with the number of checkpoints on the roads connecting Colombo to the north and east, and within Colombo itself, seeming to increase. The government appeared to be quite content with having the security apparatus spread into every area of governance, with even appointments to civilian administrative posts being given to former military officers. more..

'Some dictators do hold "elections" but they are neither fair nor free'

Dec 1 (DBS) JVP office in Kadadolaha, Anuradhapura attacked by thugs in Defender jeep - No. WP GG 9417.Cut-outs & posters for Sarath Fonseka were destroyed. Complaint No.CIB I 55/602 lodged at the Athurugiriya Police says JVP supporters were attacked by five thugs in a blue lorry - No. LC 2914. Now that Sarath Fonseka has chosen the Swan as his election symbol all Swans at the Dehiwela zoo are in danger of dying "mysteriously" more..

The TNA stalwart Kajendran MP back in Colombo

Dec 1 (AT) Selvaraj Kajendran, the TNA MP, who was on an extended honeymoon with his newly wed wife has landed in Colombo on the 28 November, after an absence of two long years. His arrival coincides with the appeal made by General (retd.) Sarath Fonseka, the presidential candidate to the supporters of the LTTE and to the remnant LTTE cadres. Only on last Sunday Sarath Fonseka declared his candidacy at the forthcoming presidential election and more..

Sri Lanka credit markets hit by deficit spending

Dec 1 (LBO) First, we need to understand that debt markets broadly require three enabling factors, the need (or demand) for debt capital, a source (or supply) of debt capital, and the accompanying intermediary infrastructure that is required to put the two together. As far as the private sector corporate debt market is concerned, Sri Lanka has been severely hamstrung on the first two counts, with some shortfalls on the third. more..

Sri Lanka suspends chicks from France

Dec 1 (WP) Sri Lanka has suspended importing live chicken from France owing to the threat of bird flu, the Animal Production and Health Department said. The Animal Production and Health Department said that chicken imported from France has been suspended following a warning that had been issued by the World Animal Health Organization, due to the spread of bird flu in the country. more..

Defeating Tigers, now rides the Swan

Lankan government acquiring lands in Tamil areas

Dec 1 (EB) Even before resettling the Tamils in their traditional areas, the Sri Lankan government is in the process of acquiring lands in the northern and eastern regions of the country to attract foreign investors. Speaking on ‘Trade and investment opportunities in Sri Lanka’, Sri Lankan Deputy High Commissioner Vadivelu Krishnamoorthy said that vast areas of suitable land had been identified for cultivation of food crops and more..

Cooking in Aluminum utensils harmful to health - Health Ministry

Dec 1 (GDI) Cooking in Aluminum utensils has been found to be one of the main reasons for the increase in the number of kidney patients in the North Central Province. The Ministry for Indigenous Medicine has warned the residents of the North Central Province to refrain from using Aluminium utensils. Arrangements have also been made to provide residents with clay pots. It will be mooted with the funds allocated to the Ministry for Indigenous Medicine. more..

'Sarath Fonseka caught in an Opposition trap'

Dec 1 (GDI) "Gen. Sarath Fonseka had got caught to a trap laid by the Opposition which is aided by international agencies to conspire against the government. We feel very sorry about him", the Minister of Ports Dilan Perera lamented yesterday. The Minister said that friendly political parties in the alliance have pledged their fullest support to the candidature of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and were ready to embark on a successful journey to benefit the country. more..

'Opposition on a journey to fulfill Prabakaran's last wish'

Dec 1 (GDI) "The Opposition strategy could well have been to fulfill Prabhakaran’s last wish to destabilize the nation, before the army killed him on the banks of the Nanthikadal lagoon in May", Minister Patali Champilka Ranawaka said. The Opposition was clueless regarding its future political plans though it had pledged to abolish the executive presidency and an executive premiership as proposed by the UNP more..

Opposition fighting a losing battle - Keheliya

Dec 1 (GDI) The Opposition has no power to win the presidential election and has decided to field a common candidate to come to power but the people are not ready to defeat the present President and he has won the confidence of masses, Minister Keheliya Rambukwalla said. He pointed out that forthcoming Presidential election would be the most democratic election after the three decades of violence. more..

President most suited for Presidency - Labour Minister

Dec 1 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapakse is the most suited person for the post of President and he has no challenge to win the forthcoming Presidential Election. He had more challenges in 2005 than this election, the Minister Athauda Seneviratne said. He pointed out that a special characteristic of the President was his ability to uphold a stern opinion without bowing to international forces. more..

Sri Lanka street tour: Chris Pfeiffer

World AIDS Day emphasizes on Human Rights and access to treatment

Dec 1 (LP) World AIDS Day is held on 1 December every year. It is an international day to raise awareness about HIV and AIDS around the world. AIDS has killed more than 25 million people between 1981 and 2007, and an estimated 33.2 million people worldwide live with HIV as of 2007, making it one of the most destructive epidemics in recorded history. The first AIDS patient was detected in 1981. The first World AIDS Day was celebrated on 1 December 1988. more..

SAARC countries to participate in Profoods- Propack 2010

Dec 1 (LP) Profoods -Propack 2010, will also showcase many overseas companies participating, especially from the SAARC region. An area has been allocated for international pavilions that have seen the tremendous growth of this event and the popularity it has among all consumers and stakeholders in the industry. The Agribusiness, Food Processing and Packaging fraternities will once again combine on the 20th-22nd of Aug. 2010 to showcase Sri Lanka’s complete food supply chain. more..

Applications for Postal Voting accepted from 01st December

Dec 1 (LP) Applications for Postal voting would be accepted as from today announces the office of the Election Commissioner. The sources further mentioned that the applications can be forwarded through the Heads of Departments. Those in the three forces, Police, and other officers on election duty are eligible to apply for the postal voting. more..

Disabled war heroes get artificial limbs

Dec 1 (LP) The Seva Vanitha Army Branch (SVAB) under the guidance of its President Mrs. Manjulika Jayasuriya made a donation of artificial limbs and commode sets to disabled War Heroes and scholarships to sons and daughters of the War Heroes who participated in recent humanitarian operations recently. Over 150 disabled soldiers received commode sets while another 11 disabled soldiers received artificial limbs on this occasion. more..

President Rajapaksa to open “e-Asia” 2009

Dec 1 (LP) “e-Asia 2009”, Asia’s largest IT (Information Technology) Conference and Exhibition will be declared open by President Mahinda Rajapaksa tomorrow. The conference and exhibition which is held under three main themes will be held from the 02nd to the 04th of December 2009 at the BMICH. The themes of the conference attended by over 24 IT experts from the Asian region are e-Governance, Digital Learning, e-Health, Telecentres and Emerging e-Technologies. more..

Media personnel invited for felicitation ‘cut off’ later

Dec 1 (LeN) The media personnel who covered the war were invited to the Hilton Hotel tonight (30) to felicitate them by the President. However, many of these invitees were later, this afternoon informed that their presence is unnecessary from sources at the top. A number of State and private media personnel were invited for this function at 7.30 p.m. This felicitation ceremony was to be headed by the President. more..

AIR's former Colombo correspondent dead

Dec 1 (AT) Mr A Karuppasamy of the Indian Information Service who served as All India Radio's Colombo correspondent during the turbulent days of August 1991 when ruling United National Party rebels led by Mr Lalith Athulathmudali and Mr Gamini Dissanayake made anabortive attempt to impeach the then President, Mr R Premadasa, died at his residence here on Tuesday. He was 70 and more..

'JVP is a political movement that could cultivate on a rock'

Dec 1 (LT) “Mahinda’s biggest blunder was to underestimate the ability of the JVP. Everyone who underestimated the ability of the JVP has bungled. This is a political party that could till on a rock. We ask Mr. Mahinda Rajapakse to get ready to go home,” said General Secretary of the JVP Tilvin Silva. He made this challenge to President Mahinda Rajapakse at a massive rally held by the JVP. more..

'Mahinda who went on caravan has become a ‘cardboard’ hero'

Dec 1 (LT) Speaking at a massive rally held by the JVP at Hyde Park yesterday JVP MP K.D. Lal Kanthe said, “Mahinda Rajapakse has become a liar, fraudster and racketeer by calling this presidential election. This is the very reason the presidency should be taken away from him. Those in the government say Mahinda Rajapakse is a leader who does what he says and says what he does. more..

I’ll take action if state media is not impartial – Commissioner of Elections

Dec 1 (LT) Action would be taken after nominations against media institutions, specially the state media, if they do not act impartially said Commissioner of Elections Dayananda Dishanayake when he met representatives of opposition political parties at a discussion. The representatives of opposition political parties have, with proof, shown the Commissioner of Elections that state media acts in a partial manner supporting the government at the election. more..

Ridding country of crime now no. 1 priority: IGP

Dec 1 (DM) IGP Mahinda Balasuriya said that if there was concrete evidence incriminating a politician or even a policeman who was involved in drug trafficking, the police would take necessary steps to arrest them as it has now become their number one priority after completely eradicating terrorism. He pointed out that crime rates had dropped from 58000 in the year 2005 to 38000 this year. more..

Victims and perpetrators of violence in same alliance

Dec 1 (DN) Those who were subjected to violence during the 1987 - 1988 period are now in alliance with the party that created it, said President Mahinda Rajapaksa. There were very few persons who raised a voice against the State horror during this period. The so called Human Rights watchdogs showed reluctance to speak of human rights violations in the South at that time. They only spoke about the Human Rights violations in the North, the President stressed. more..