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Sri Lanka revokes security clearance for civilians

Nov 19 (Hindu) In a major confidence building measure, the Government on Wednesday revoked the mandatory security clearance for civilians of the Northern Province to travel via land routes. Citizens of Jaffna peninsula, whose only link to the island nation is through the A9 highway, would be the biggest beneficiaries. The move, a response to pleas from parties to provide a sense of dignity and equality in the post-Prabhakaran Sri Lanka, came ahead of an early Presidential election. more..

Chief Executive, Mahinda or Sarath?

Nov 19 (LG) I would suggest that the following article by Day is a must read before reading mine. He or She has said almost everything I wanted to say. I am just icing the cake. "General Fonseka as the chief executive officer of future Sri Lanka" on Saturday, November 14, 2009. At the outset I must say that it is a foregone conclusion that Sri Lanka has been stagnant for the last 60 years on every front and more..

Sri Lanka at a crossroad: Voters hold the key

Nov 19 (AT) The trouble with this country is that there are too many politicians who believe, with a conviction based on experience, that they can fool all of the people all of the time. This more or less sums up the state of affairs in Sri Lanka and begs to question the contributing factors that have waned Sri Lanka’s growth over the years. We are well aware that the scrooge of terrorism existed for almost three decades. Leaving aside the foreign connections and influences that contributed to the prevalence of terror over the years, more..

President Kumaratunga on board of directors of Club de Madrid

Nov 19 (AT) The world’s largest forum of former Democratic Presidents and Prime Ministers the Club de Madrid recently concluded its Annual Conference in the Spanish capital. More than 100 former Heads of State and experts from around the world met over two days to discuss ‘The Political Dimensions of the World Economic Crisis’. President Kumaratunga addressed the conference on “Employment, Social Welfare, and Democratic Rights and Duties”. more..

Mahinda in sabotage ploy

Nov 19 (LG) In this week some media operateing from colombo reported,General Secretary, SLFP, Maithiripala Sirisena and the General Secretary of JVP, Tilvin Silva hold special talks on issues related to the current political situation in Sri Lanka and the political actions to be taken in the future. The talks had taken place only between the general secretaries of the two political parties, the sources added. It is also said that Basil Rajapakse also hold several talks with the JVP MP, Anurakumara Disanayake prior to the special talks mentioned above. more..

Ranil’s challenge to Rajapaksa

Nov 19 (Hindu) The newly-floated UNF, led by Ranil Wickremesinghe, challenged Mahinda Rajapaksa to go ahead with his planned early presidential poll if he was confident of his popularity. Hours ahead of a Cabinet meeting Presided by Mr. Rajapaksa which agreed on the dates for the presidential and parliamentary election, UNF senior leader Tissa Attanayake said that the alliance which started with 13 constituent parties recently had already risen to a platform of 18. more..

All faiths go in to bat for national cricket team

Nov 19 (UCAN) The Sri Lankan Cricket Board has for the first time allowed leaders of various faiths to conduct prayer and blessing ceremonies for the national team, currently on tour in India. In the past, the ceremonies had been exclusively Buddhist. "It's the dawn of an era," remarked Suraj Dandeniya, Sri Lankan tournament director for the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup 2011, which will be held in Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka. more..

SAARC Science and Technology Ministers to Meet in Colombo

Nov 19 (AT) Sri Lanka to host the second meeting of Science and Technology Ministers of SAARC countries in Colombo on November 23 to 24th, Minister Prof. Tissa Vitharana revealed. He said that the second meeting will concentrate on the formulation of a science and technology strategy, promotion of regional and multilateral co-operation, sharing of information on national institutions between member countries. more..

Tamil diaspora rejects Nediyaven:Rudrakumaran leadership

Nov 19 (AT) New LTTE leadership’s grand idea of a Transnational Eelam Government suffered an inglorious defeat when 90 percent of the Tamil diaspora showed its contempt by abstaining from voting for the transnational government. The LTTE leader Nediyavan, who succeeded KP as head of the terrorist outfit suffered a humiliating setback when Tamils in Norway rejected his leadership on Sunday. more..

Tamils recall tortured past

Nov 19 (Excal) He moves in the kitchen like a predatory tiger: swift, hungry and unnoticeable. I worked with him years ago in a tiny-but-charming restaurant in Toronto, where his performance was formidable: quick-tempered and precise. He used to address my co-workers in confident broken English, and if you didn’t understand his machine gun of words, you were asked, “Do you speak English?!” He came from Russia. From England. From Sri Lanka. more..

Sri Lanka's debate over the inflation rate 01

Nov 19 (LBO) Inflation is considered public enemy number one when a country is not at war. Since Sri Lanka’s 30 year old war is now over, there cannot be a bigger public enemy than inflation. Inflation is simply the continuous increase in the prices of common consumer commodities over a sufficiently long period of time. To measure these price increases, countries compile consumer price indices regularly by using the market prices of consumer items which more..

Sri Lanka seeks UN aid as envoy visits Tamils displaced by war

Nov 19 (BN) Sri Lanka asked the United Nations for help resettling civilians displaced by the country’s civil war as a UN envoy visited camps where mainly Tamil refugees have lived since the defeat of Tamil Tiger rebels in May. The number of displaced people is “declining on a daily basis due to the rapid pace of the resettlement process,” Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama told John Holmes, the UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs more..

If you don’t mind my asking, what is your race?

Nov 19 (GV) At my local hospital (in the UK) this morning, a nurse asked: “If you don’t mind my asking, what is your race?” Not the sort of everyday question, so I was taken aback. “Different races have different risks, you see”, she quickly explained. “Oh, I am Sri Lankan”, I replied. But is that a race? Aren’t we Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim etc. for this race purpose? From a DNA point of view, Sri Lankan is probably my race. more..

Sri Lankan Documentary

Lanka cricketers seek armed commandos on India tour

Nov 19 (IT) The Sri Lankan cricket team playing a series in India is unhappy with the security arrangements and has, among other things, sought armed commandos. Headlines Today has accessed the Lankan team's correspondence over security matters during the India tour. In a letter to the Mumbai additional police commissioner, the Lankan team's security in-charge Lawrence Fernando has expressed unhappiness with the security provided. more..

Consensus Needed Now as President Places Development on War Footing

Nov 19 (SLNN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa, speaking at the annual Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) convention, vowed to accelerate Sri Lanka’s development by placing it on a war footing and promised to make the country a center of knowledge. “We will surprise the world with our development,” he said, addressing a massive gathering of ruling party supporters Sunday at the Khettarama Stadium in Colombo. more..

Top Sri Lankan general touted as presidential candidate

Nov 19 (wsws) The emergence of Sarath Fonseka, Sri Lanka’s former Army Commander and Chief of Defence Staff, as a likely presidential candidate has highlighted the intense political crisis surrounding both government and opposition parties following the end of the country’s protracted civil war in May. President Mahinda Rajapakse has sought to continue victory celebrations indefinitely in a bid to boost the government amid a deteriorating economy and more..

'Use of organic fertilizer will save millions'

Nov 19 (GDI) A colossal amount of money can be saved in the country if farmers widely use organic agricultural methods, Minister of Agriculture and Agrarian Services Development Maithreepala Sirisena said at a ceremony held at the National Youth Centre in Maharagama. He pointed out that the agricultural sector in the country spent millions of rupees to import chemical fertilizer and the pesticides. more..

Prime Minister commends standard of local products

Nov 19 (GDI) “The standard of local products is high” , Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake said while addressing the 2009 Sri Lanka National Standards Certificate ceremony at the BMICH yesterday. Speaking further the Prime Minister said Sri Lankan products and services can now compete at international level. ISO 9011, ISO 1401, ISO 22,000 and ISO 27,000 were presented on the occasion. more..

Norway grants towards "Uthuru Wasanthaya"

Nov 19 (GDI) The Norwegian Government granted further assistance towards the 'Northern Spring' project of the government to uplift the living standards of the northern people. Fourteen super luxury vehicles were donated for use to develop the North. The presentation took place at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday. The donation was officially received by the Chairman of the “Uthuru Wasanthaya” Task Force MP Basil Rajapaksa. more..

Wage increase for public sector and Tri-Service personnel

Nov 19 (GDI) Cabinet approved a proposal by President Mahinda Rajapaksa to grant special allowances to all members of the Armed Forces, irrespective of the area they serve and to Public Servants. This provision is effective November 2009. The President in his memorandum to cabinet pointed out that it was necessary to provide the special allowances outlined in the memorandum for the armed forces that battled terrorism for 30 years. more..

'Political leadership essential to guide military leadership at times of war'

Nov 19 (GDI) Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa today claimed that a strong political leadership was paramount to guide military leadership to win a war. He recalled he battle against the LTTE In Vdamarachchi during the J.R Jayewardene administration and added that President J.R Jayewardana had to give in to foreign pressure when the Army was on the verge of winning the war. more..

Summary of Cabinet decisions

Nov 19 (GDI) Cabinet granted approval to a memorandum submitted by President Mahinda Rajapaksa as the Minister of Finance and Planning to grant permanency to temporary, casual, substitute, relief and contract basis to preliminary grade employees in the Public Service and the Provincial Public Service who have fulfilled the following conditions as at 31.10.2009, with effect from 01.11.2009. These employees should be fulfill below qualifications: more..

'Deciding polls a prerogative of President'

Nov 19 (GDI) The most trusted and strongest force,in the country is the Alliance headed by the SLFP under the leadership of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said. He pointed out that the President has two more years to complete his first term in office but the President and his Government was ready to face any type of election confidently at any given time and more..

Summit on strategy of Tamil speaking Community in Switzerland

Nov 19 (SLW) Tamil Information Center, which was set up at the early days of Tamil National Freedom Struggle with the aim of bringing all Tamil movements under single banner, is organizing the above summit which starts today in Zurich. Leaders of Tamil and Muslim political parties and representatives of Tamil Diaspora will take part in the summit. The aim of the summit is to find a healthy path to work all Tamil and Muslim political parties together in future. more..

Registrations of Political Parties Cancelled

Nov 19 (SLW) According to Election commissioner’s dept the registration of many political parties have got cancelled according to the new election amendments act the registration of many political parties have got cancelled. There are 65 registered political parties and the election Commissioner’s office is now carrying out the cancellation of some of these parties according to certain regulations in the elections act. more..

'No fight against Tamil people in Sri Lanka'

Nov 19 (LP) Addressing the Sri Lanka Expatriate forum Minister of Foreign Affairs Rohitha Bogollagama said that there was never a fight against the Tamil people in Sri Lanka. The conflict that ravaged our country was between an elected Sri Lankan Government and that of an internationally known terrorist organization, the LTTE. During the final phase of the conflict, the Government launched a humanitarian operation to more..

Is use of Narcotics in the island dropping?

Nov 19 (LP) The use of heroin in the country has decreased within the last five years. Speaking to the media, Chairman of the National Dangerous Drugs Control Board D. P. Mendis PC said that the arrests and prosecutions, too, had decreased within the years. Comparing with 2004 there was a reduction of 32 per cent in detection, arrests and prosecutions last year he said. The number of heroin related arrests in 2004 was 11,846 and last year it had dropped to 8,050. more..

Second phase of Puttlam coal power plant to commence

Nov 19 (LP) The Cabinet approved the memorandum submitted by President Mahinda Rajapaksa in order to obtain the needed financial aid from the Government of China for the second phase of the Puttlam Coal Power Plant. The project is funded by the Chinese Exim Bank and the bank agreed to provide a loan of Es 891 million for the construction. Under the second phase two power plants which will generate 300MW will be established. more..

Japan relaxed travel advisory conflict stricken areas

Nov 19 (LP) On the November 11, 2009, the Government of Japan has decided to relax the Travel Advice & Warning in a manner mentioned below: To the Eastern Province: from a Level of “Recommendation to consider whether or not to travel” to a Level of “Travel caution” which advises Japanese nationals to stay alert to the security situation and take necessary precautions. To the areas of the Northern Province Vavuniya City, more..

Malaysian delegation impressed by progress in resettlement

Nov 19 (MoD) A delegation of the Federation of 18 Malaysian Sri Lankan Associations who visited the North expressed their satisfaction at the speedy progress made in the resettlement of IDPs. The government is doing its best for their welfare, It's an excellent job said Mr. S. Kulasegaran. They appreciated the fact that they were given free access to IDP camps and rehabilitation centers and were able to interview them freely. more..

Come down to earth, warns Judge Weeramantry

Nov 19 (LG) The marked and recurring theme in Judge C. G. Weeramantry’s legal philosophy has been to resurrect and elevate religions and traditional values to the highest level in the global agenda as a guide to the future. He demonstrated his commitment to his principles when, as a member and later as Vice-President of the International Court of Justice – more..

Is Sarath Fonseka forming a new political party?

Nov 19 (SLNN) Reports are emerging from informed sources that former Chief of Defense Staff Sarath Fonseka is planning to register a new political party. Sources say Fonseka could submit registration documents to the Elections Secretariat as early as Thursday afternoon. Meanwhile, the Daily Mirror is reporting that the JVP attempted to register a new political party Wednesday, with the intention of presenting a common candidate at a future presidential election. more..

Teachers prepare for island-wide protest campaign

Nov 19 (LT) Teachers and principals of schools will join in an island wide campaign on the 25th of this month at 2.00 p.m. to protest against the failure of authorities to solve several issues confronted by teachers and principals of schools. General Secretary of Ceylon Teachers’ Service Union Mahinda Jayasinghe said this at a media meeting held at ‘Sagara’ Hall at EDCS at Kollupitiya in Colombo. more..

Rajitha confirms SL Presidential polls first

Nov 19 (LNP) Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne yesterday said that the government would hold the presidential election ahead of parliamentary elections before April next year. Addressing a press conference, chaired by SLFP heavyweight Dallas Alahapperuma, Senaratne said that the presidential poll would follow elections to the Southern Provincial Council scheduled for October 10. more..

Patients forced to celebrate Mahinda’s B’day

Nov 19 (LT) A health camp was held yesterday at Abeyarama Temple, the temple of Ven. Muruthtettuwe Ananda Thero at Narahenpita. Ven. Muruththettuwe Ananda Thero is the President of The Public Service United Nurses’ Union. This was held to commemorate the birthday of President Mahinda Rajapakse. A large number of patients had participated in the health camp and all those patients were those who had come to get treatment at the OPD of the Colombo National Hospital say reports. more..

Major changes in retribution concerning General

Nov 19 (LT) It is reported an unusual agenda against the Regiment represented by General Sarath Fonseka has been launched. Earlier security personnel attached to his Regiment were removed from Army Headquarters. Later a number of security personnel who served the General have been transferred. In addition security provided to army personnel who are related to the General also have been transferred. more..

Health Ministry to introduce a National Nutrition Policy

Nov 19 (LNP) The Health and Nutrition Ministry will introduce a National Nutrition Policy in order to develop a national action plan and a strategic plan to be implemented through inter-sectoral cooperation by the provincial health authorities, a Ministry spokesman said. The cabinet approval has been granted to Health Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva for the purpose, more..

Dullas wields sword with God

Nov 19 (LT) The officers of Railways security service held a religious ceremony at ‘Kali Amman’ Hindu Temple at Mutwal in Colombo to draw attention of the authorities to several of their issues that have not been solved. Minister of Transport Dulles Alahapperuma has ordered disciplinary action taken against those officers who had participated in this religious ceremony. The Railway employees had participated in this religious ceremony as more..

Janashakthi promotes insurance in Jaffna

Nov 19 (LNP) Janashakthi Insurance PLC in its endeavour to uplift the standard of living of the people of Jaffna, has given its wholehearted support to the program organised by the Tharunyata Hetak (A Tomorrow for our Youth) movement. 'This program which has been initiated by Namal Rajapaksa has received our total commitment', said General Manager, Sales and Marketing, Janashakthi Insurance PLC Ravi Liyanage. more..