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PCs to get police, land, health & education under 13th amendment

Jun 1 (LT) A group appointed by UPFA government to present proposals for the implementation of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution has finalized their proposal and will be submitting them to President Mahind Rajapakse on Wednesday. According to the proposals provincial councils will get land, police, health and education powers. Police powers will be limited to minor offences and councils would also retain powers for the acquisition and requisition of lands. more..

Two Army HQs in Mullaithivu & Killinochchi

Jun 1 (LT) Army Commander General Sarath Fonseka said that SL Army has established two Security Forces Headquarters in Mullaithivu and Killinochchi to oversee the overall security plan of the two districts. These two head quarters hare being established in addition to the one that exists in Vanni at present. Major General Nandana Udawatta, presently the Overall Operations Commander, Anuradhapura has been appointed as more..

The attempted resolution against Sri Lanka - a Western perspective

Jun 1 (PISL) First we must insist that everything we did was transparent and above board. Unlike Sri Lanka, which requested support from countries that no self-respecting Westerner would talk to, unless we had something to sell to them, we spoke only to countries with a solid track record of concern for human rights, except in Iraq and Afghanistan. more..

21 Colombo schools closed for 3 days

Jun 1 (CT) Twenty one schools in Colombo, Sri Lanka will be closed from today (June 01) for three days in view of war victory celebrations to be at Galle Face Green, says the Government Information Department. The schools that will remain closed in order to facilitate arrangements for the event are: Royal College, Thurston College, Mahanama College, Yashodara Balika Vidyalaya, Mahamathya Vidyalaya, Polhengoda, more..

7 top senior LTTE leaders arrested from welfare camps

Jun 1 (CT) Seven top ranked leaders of the LTTE are among several senior cadres of the outfit who have been arrested by defence authorities from welfare camps in the north. According to 'Dinamina', they include political and administrative leaders Karikalan, Yogaratnam Yogi, Lawrance Thilakar, Elilan, B. Balakumar, Ilamparithi and Thangam. Karikalan was one time eastern political leader of the LTTE, and more..

Fishing restrictions relaxed in Sri Lanka

Jun 1 (AT) Fishermen from the North West and South of Sri Lanka are overjoyed today because after nearly 20 years, fishermen are now allowed to engage in fishing in the seas off Mannar and Pesalai. Ministry of Fisheries said that now that the war with the LTTE is over, the fishermen from the west could engage in fishing using 28 ft to 30 ft boats. “The Ministry is confident that the fish harvest of the southern fishermen would be better after relaxing of restrictions. more..

Anandasangaree’s DTNA to contest alone

Jun 1 (AT) The Democratic Tamil National Alliance led by veteran Tamil Leader V.Anandasangaree will be contesting in the forthcoming local Government elections in the Northern Province. Already the Gazette notification is out regarding holding elections for the Jaffna Municipal Council, as well as to the Vavuniya Urban Council. A political alliance comprising three important anti-LTTE parties, it is popularly known as the DTNA is more..

HP targets Sri Lankan market

Jun 1 (LNP) HP has a strong commitment to the Sri Lankan market. With peace and stability in the country there is tremendous growth potential, Senior Vice President, Personal Systems Group (PSG) Asia Pacific and Japan See Chin Teik told Daily News Business. Based in Singapore, Chin Teik, an HP veteran of 18 years drives HP s sales and marketing efforts in the high-growth South-East Asian and Taiwan Markets. more..

Work begins on road connecting Mannar with main lagoon

Jun 1 (DN) Work on the three and a half kilometre new road connecting Mannar with the mainland across the lagoon is in progress these days. This will herald development activities in Mannar district immediately after the end of the war, residents in Mannar said. This 157.10 metre bridge with four lanes is being constructed at a cost of Rs. 1,900 million with Japanese aid. more..

Interview with Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu: Part 2

Interview with Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu: Part 1

New tyre factory at Ampara

Jun 1 (DN) When four previous leaders who governed the country entered the history books as defeated leaders, President Mahinda Rajapaksa has succeeded in defeating the most ruthless terrorist group in the world, Transport Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said. The Minister made these remarks when participating at the opening ceremony of a new tyre factory targeting to produce the required tyre demand for buses of the SLTB in Ampara on Saturday. more..

A Visual 'Cinema' of Sanath Gunatilake

Jun 1 (DN) Due to constraints in space on this page this week's column too would be brief. Professional film critics and erudite and seasoned cinemagoers would analyze the film in depth in the coming weeks in the media. I would concentrate on some the salient features in the film as I experienced it. The film concerned is the newest Sinhala film that is also the maiden venture of the versatile Sanath Gunatilake as a creative director in film making. more..

Prabhakaran handled colonel of SLA

Jun 1 (Island) Acting on information elicited from a Lt. Colonel who had been on the Tigers’ payroll, the police have taken into custody his handler, identified as Prabhakaran. Police told The Island that the army officer had accompanied Prabhakaran to Malaysia recently, where they met with a senior LTTE operative. The colonel had received Rs. 100,000 from the LTTE operative now identified as Nawaz, they said. more..

Pera produces cheap alternative to petrol from straw

Jun 1 (Island) The Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture, University of Peradeniya has successfully experimented with producing fuel from straw. The fuel named Butanol is similar to petrol. butyl alcohol (also called biobutanol when produced biologically) is a primary alcohol belonging to the higher alcohols and branched-chain alcohols. Prof. Athula Perera, Director, PGIA, University of Peradeniya announcing the outcome of more..

Now, photographs as fig leaves

Jun 1 (Island) Now that the western governments, save a few, have failed to burn Sri Lanka at the stake for war crimes, their propaganda hacks are trying to dupe the world into believing that in the run-up to the final battle in Mullaitivu, over 20,000 civilians perished in the army's artillery fire. They are subjecting Sri Lanka to a media trial on the basis of some post-war aerial pictures and analysis thereof. more..

Sri Lankan smugglers strive to survive

Jun 1 (SP) Sri Lanka recently defeated ethnic separatist Tamil rebels, after nearly three decades of fighting. The rebel organization, the LTTE, had built a large international weapons smuggling organization. The government is hustling to try and prevent this smuggling operation from surviving the LTTE defeat. In the wake of that defeat, police found and arrested one of the lieutenants of LTTE weapons smuggling chief Kumaran Pathmanadan, hiding out in a Tamil refugee camp. more..

Lankan refugees in India to return after IDPs are resettled

Jun 1 (DM) The government said yesterday it would facilitate the return of some 100,000 Sri Lankan war refugees living in India only after the thousands of war affected civilians living in refugee camps in the North and East were resettled. Minister Rizad Bathiyudeen told Daily Mirror the civilians who fled the country to escape the 26-year war were living as refugees in several parts of India. more..

Mangala’s National Congress in crisis; new party to be registered

Jun 1 (LeN) SLFP People’s Wing leader Mathara district MP Mangala Samaraweera has submitted a fresh application to the Election Commissioner to register a new political party. When MP Samaraweera broke away from SLFP with late MP Sripathi Suriyaarachchi, they formed a new party in the name ‘National Congress.’ But a court case is underway regarding some malpractice behind this registration. more..

Scientists discuss initiatives to eradicate the ‘Bug’

Jun 1 (DM) Scientists from all agricultural research institutions, universities and the private sector involved in the field of agriculture, sat together recently to discuss and formulate a policy for the eradication of the ‘Mealy Bug’ or ‘Piti Makuna’, that has created a crisis in the country. This is the first time that such a gathering of scientists came together to discuss a crisis of this nature. more..

The land that belongs to no one

Jun 1 (DM) The issue as to whether the government should go ahead and devolve land powers to the provinces as per the Provincial Councils Act is making rounds these days for two reasons. Firstly there is an attempt by a handful of government ministers to insist that the provincial councils should wrest the control of land powers given to them by the Constitution. Secondly because Sri Lanka’s resolution to the UNHRC last week specifically said that more..

Uganda stuck with six rescued Sri Lankans

Jun 1 (TC) Police are stuck with six Sri Lanka natives it recently rescued from suspected human traffickers. The six were rescued after police stormed a residence in the outskirts of Kampala where suspected traffickers were keeping their victims on the pretext of getting them jobs in Uganda and abroad. The six were identified as Mr Nadarasa Jegatheeswaran, Mr Muras Abdul Mohamed, Mr Ratnam Jeevtharan Velupillal, Mr Kiritharan Suntharalingam, more..

Sri Lanka Tamils 'facing misery'

Jun 1 (BBC) A senior Sri Lankan Tamil political leader has urged the government to resettle civilians back to their homes as early as possible. V Anandasangaree described conditions in camps for civilians displaced by the country's war as "horrible". The head of the TULF said hundreds of thousands faced misery and hardship. He said there were food, health and sanitation problems in camps set up for Tamil civilians in northern Sri Lanka. more..

TNA seeks amnesty for surrendered LTTE

Jun 1 (ANI) R Sambandan, a lawmaker of Sri Lanka now on a visit to India has sought amnesty for surrendered LTTE. The leader of Tamil Nationalist Alliance said this while speaking to mediapersons here on Sunday. Sambandan said that the Tamil rebels should be provided with opportunities so that they can lead normal life in the mainstream of society. more..

India 'complicit' in killing of 20,000 civilians

Jun 1 (Telegraph) Human rights groups have claimed India did not do enough to protect civilians in the war zone and a former commander on Indian peacekeeping forces in Sri Lanka has said India's role in the conflict was "distressing and disturbing". "We were complicit in this last phase of the offensive when a great number of civilians were killed," Major General Ashok Mehta, who is now retired, told The Times. more..

Sri Lanka conflict: The diaspora factor

Jun 1 (AN) The war is not going to end soon," said Brig. Udaya Nanayakkara, the Sri Lankan Army's spokesman, last month. "It will take some time to completely eradicate terrorism from the country - we think about two years." In the euphoria over the recent military victory that ended the conventional war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam ("Tamil Tigers") and wiped out most of their leadership, most people in Sri Lanka have forgotten that prediction, but it remains likely. more..

Jettisoning Tamil aspirations

Jun 1 (ANN) The talk of the town last week was Sri Lanka’s epic victory at the UN Human Rights Council. The resolution brought by Switzerland against Sri Lanka at a special session of the UNHRC convened especially to discuss Sri Lanka, backfired against its Western European sponsors. What this victory showed was that the world community was becoming aware that this tendency to use human rights issues by certain western nations to more..

Tigers sowed seeds of their own destruction

Jun 1 (ANN) In early 2006, shortly after he took charge as Sri Lanka’s defence secretary in his brother’s Cabinet, Gotabhaya Rajapakse submitted a long list of expensive war equipment he wanted to purchase. Many, including newly installed President Mahinda Rajapakse, were surprised. “All of you will start with hopes of talking peace with the Tigers and when you realise it is futile, you will come to me,” the defence secretary responded, referring to the separatist LTTE. more..

Missing Tiger spy chief spells trouble

Jun 1 (AT) A little over a week after the Sri Lankan government triumphantly announced the elimination of the entire top brass of the LTTE, there is some unease in Colombo over the fate of one of the most powerful Tigers, the LTTE's intelligence chief Shanmugalingam Sivashankar, better known as Pottu Amman. The failure of the government to produce his body has triggered speculation that Pottu Amman might not be dead after all and more..

Pakistan pilots carry out all 3,000 missions in eelam war

Jun 1 (ANN) SLAF Air Chief Marshal Roshan Goonetilike Sunday denied Pakistani media reports that some of the missions against the LTTE had been carried out by Pakistan Air Force pilots. "There is absolutely no truth in this claim," Goonetilike said. Responding to our queries, he said that during Eelam war IV the SLAF had conducted over 3,000 missions against some 1,900 targets in the northern and eastern theatres over the past three years. more..

‘Aunty’ to female Tamil Tigers runs London protests from New Malden

Jun 1 (ES) A Tamil terror chief who allegedly handed cyanide pills to child soldiers is living in a London suburb, the Standard can reveal. Sri Lankan intelligence officials believe Adele Balasingham, 59, is one of the most senior figures in the remains of the terror group which fought a 26-year war for independence on the island and was defeated last month. more..

Poddu calls from beyond the grave?

Jun 2 (DW) Some of DefenceWire's readers have asked us again about the fate of Poddu Amman. The reason for this new-found doubt is due to newspaper (local and foreign) articles indicating a) Poddu's body has not been recovered b) Army was still searching for his remains, c) he may have escaped and d) he is now in SLA custody and revealing identities of remaining LTTE spies. While the first two points, that his body was never found and more..

GM mosquitoes unleashed in Sri Lanka?

Jun 2 (GV) Genetically modified (GM) mosquitoes may have been released in the Greater Colombo area this year and can wreak havoc on public health, scientists and activists warn. These mosquitoes are larger in size, and far more resistant to insecticides and other repellents. “They will not be deterred by mosquito spray or coils – in fact, these methods will have no effect on these new breeds,” a top entomologist, who did not wish to be named, said. more..

Will the Tamil aspirations be buried by the Diaspora’s memories?

Jun 2 (GV) I was just watching a past episode of the ‘Riz Khan’ show which is available on YouTube and the subject for discussion was what the future holds for the Tamil people. The three panelists consisted of the former Sri Lankan ambassador to the US and Mexico, a human rights activist and a spokesperson (Ms. Janani Jananayagam) for London based ‘Tamils against Genocide’. Ms. Jananayagam is also in the running for the European Parliament elections more..

A massive Northern cultivation and resettlement program

Jun 2 (GDI) The Ministry of Agriculture has commenced a massive cultivation program in the North after 30 years. Although the North is blessed with appropriate geographical advantages for coconut cultivation, the LTTE was a major threat, Minister of Agriculture Hema Kumara Nanayakkara told our special correspondent in Vavuniya during a visit to the welfare centers in Vavuniya. more..

Sinhalese wife of LTTE operative arrested

Jun 2 (CT) A special unit from Mt. Lavinia Police three days ago arrested the Sinhalese wife of an LTTE intelligence wing operative identified as Thawarasa Madan. According to police, the two had met while Madan had been employed at a printing press at Nedimala in Dehiwela. While in Colombo, Sri Lanka, he had often traveled to Kilinochchi. Madan had got injured in a clash with the Army and is now in Vavuniya, police said. more..

Pro-LTTE demonstrations cost UK Police 8 million pounds

Jun 2 (PTI) Metropolitan Police spent a whopping 8 million pounds to control the 43-day long demonstration outside the British Parliament by pro-LTTE supporters, a top police official said. The supporters of Tamil Tigers were demanding an end to the war between LTTE and Sri Lankan Army and justice to the Tamilians in the island country. Met Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson said that the demonstration had "extraordinarily stretched" the police force. more..

Media monitoring and analytics

Working in Sri Lanka's camps calls for creative thinking

Jun 2 (AN) These days, it's a question of survival of the most creative. In response to the challenges we face working in camps for internal refugees in Sri Lanka's north, we have to be innovative to overcome operational obstacles. And there are many! Take, for example, the recent news of the end of the war and the death of the Tamil Tiger rebel leader, which brought euphoria to the streets of Colombo and some other parts of the country. more..

Fishermen hope to return to sea

Jun 2 (UCAN) Fishermen in northern Sri Lanka are hoping to ply their trade again, now that the war against Tamil separatists is over. However, much depends on the government ending its fishing restrictions, they said at a recent meeting. Members of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce from Colombo joined fishermen's representatives at the Bishop of Jaffna's residence on May 26 and 27 to discuss attempts to bring normality back to the region. more..

Sri Lanka pushes ahead with resettlement plans for displaced

Jun 2 (DPA) Brushing aside sweeping allegations of widespread killings of civilians in the final stage of their campaign to crush Tamil rebels, Sri Lankan officials said Monday they will press ahead with plans to care for thousands of war refugees who will eventually be sent back to their homes. Colombo made no official response to allegations by British newspapers and human rights organisations of human rights abuses in the final days of the conflict. more..

Sri Lankan journalist assaulted

Jun 2 (BBC) A Sri Lankan journalist is in hospital after being abducted and beaten by unidentified attackers. Poddala Jayantha received head and leg injuries in the attack near his home in the Colombo suburb of Nugegoda. Mr Jayantha campaigns for media freedom and is seen by government supporters as an opponent of the authorities. Critics in Sri Lanka's local media have come under extreme pressure in the past few years. more..

After The War

Jun 2 (TOI) The ghosts of war have come to haunt Colombo. A respected UK-based newspaper has accused the Sri Lankan government of massacring 20,000 Tamil civilians during the last phase of the fight against the LTTE. Colombo has rubbished the news report as a figment of imagination and has refused to investigate the allegations. This is contrary to the reconciliatory gestures made by Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa towards the Tamil community since the war ended. more..

Nations compete to gain Sri Lanka's favor

Jun 2 (UPI) China, India and Pakistan are competing to win the favor of Sri Lanka and gain better access to the Indian Ocean, The Times of London reported Monday. In a commentary, the newspaper, without naming sources, said it is well-known that China supplied arms to Sri Lanka in its war against Tamil rebels in a deal to build a major port at Hambantota. But, it said, less well-known is that India was first approached over the Hambantota deal but turned Colombo down. more..

Supreme court appoints auditors, auctioneers to Golden Key

Jun 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka's Supreme Court has appointed a chief executive, an auctioneer and auditors to the collapsed Golden Key Credit Card Company to liquidate assets and pay back depositors, lawyers said. The chief executive would be an officer from Sri Lanka's central bank. Golden Key Credit Card, a member of the Ceylinco group, was not originally a registered finance company. more..

Advantages and disadvantages of the New Electricity Law

Jun 2 (AT) It is ridiculous and meaningless that certain groups discuss conservation of electricity, in broad day time with hundreds of electric lights on, and in shivering cold where the air-conditioners are on, whereas these discussions could be held under natural light and without air-conditioning, which saves lots of energy. This was stated by Y P Dassanayake, Coordinating Officer, Viduli Paaribhogika Samithi Sammelanaya more..

'UN did not underestimate Sri Lanka death toll'

Jun 2 (AFP) UN chief Ban Ki-moon on Monday categorically rejected allegations the world body had deliberately underestimated the death toll in the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka. "I categorically reject -- repeat categorically -- any suggestion that the United Nations has deliberately underestimated any figures," he told the UN General Assembly. more..

Malaysia, largest foreign investor in Sri Lanka for the fourth year consecutively

Jun 2 (AT) "Malaysia was the largest foreign investor in Sri Lanka for the fourth consecutive year last year, with leading Malaysian companies playing a major role in key sectors of the Sri Lankan economy". As of last year, there were 18 Malaysian commercial projects in Sri Lanka, which was valued at RM3.2 billion (US$910 million) Malaysian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Rosli Ismail told the media yesterday. more..

CPA receives threat

Jun 2 (Hindu) The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA), an independent Colombo-based think-tank critical of the government on Eelam War IV, said it had received an anonymous letter threatening the worst if the organisation did not mend its ways. The CPA posted a copy of the letter written in Sinhala online. Extracts from the translated version, under the title “Notice to the traitors [deshadrohis]”, read: “The wretched war that lasted throughout 30 years has now come to an end more..

Britain sold weapons to help Sri Lankan army defeat Tamil Tigers

Jun 2 (Times) Britain and other EU countries sold military equipment worth millions of pounds to the Sri Lankan Government in the last three years of its bloody civil war with the Tamil Tigers, The Times has learnt. Britain approved commercial sales of more than £13.6 million of equipment including armoured vehicles, machinegun components and semiautomatic pistols, according to official records. more..