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Sri Lanka's war on the tragic truth

Sep 10 (TA) The expulsion from the country of Australian-born Unicef spokesman James Elder this month, for speaking out against those abuses and child casualties in the bloody final stages of Sri Lanka's 26-year long civil war, dims it further still. Elder was one of very few aid workers on the ethnically riven island nation who was prepared to brave the wrath of the Sinhalese-dominated government to highlight the plight of civilians, more..

India eye number one ranking in Sri Lanka

Sep 10 (AFP) Coach Gary Kirsten said Wednesday India needed to be consistent in the ongoing tri-series in Sri Lanka to become the world's best one-day team. India, who have won five successive bilateral series, will top the one-day rankings if they beat both Sri Lanka and New Zealand in the league stage and also win the final on September 14. "We have set our goals," Kirsten said ahead of the team's departure for Colombo. more..

Deaths in police custody increase

Sep 10 (BBC) The parliament was informed that the number of deaths in police custody is on the rise. During the past eight months alone 32 people have died in custody. The number of people killed in custody in 2202 was two while it has increased to 26 by 2008. The Chief whip said that within the four year period of the present government its current administration 91 suspects have died while in police custody. more..

'Hemas Travels' in pilgrimage market with Indian rail

Sep 10 (LBO) Hemas Travels is breaking into the Buddhist pilgrimage market by offering an eight-day tour in a dedicated train in partnership with the Indian rail system. "You do not have to go in groups but can book the tour individually," Riza Ahmat, director of Hemas Travel (Pvt) Ltd told reporters. Pilgrimages, especially to Buddhagaya are popular in Sri Lanka where the majority of inhabitants are Buddhist. more..

Rs. 90 million manipulated ‘sweep’ draw for Minister Thondaman!

Sep 10 (LeN) The Minister of power and energy has paid a colossal sum of Rs. 90 million to move into its new premises . This payment has been made to the owner of the premises, the SL Workers’ Congress, whose leader is Arumugam Thondaman, a Minister in this Govt. According to reports received by Lanka e news , the monthly rental for this premises is Rs. 15 lakhs, and a bulk sum of Rs. 90 million has been given in one payment calculated for five years. more..

Lake House embroiled in a massive fraud and import racket

Sep 10 (LeN) The transaction of the State Institution , the Lake House to purchase a printing equipment from ‘International Corporation’ of USA for US $ 640,000/- has now come to be known as an absolute fraud. A sum of Rs. 50 million has also been paid as an advance. The initial steps for this transaction took place in the year 2000. A letter of credit No. 13177 for Rs. 640,000/ dollars was opened via the Bank of Ceylon for the purchase. more..

Facts exposed on the arrests of Journalists to cover up Supremo’s brother in law’s palace murky doings

Sep 10 (LeN) UNP M.P. Sagala Ratnayake speaking to the media, said under the guise of developing the country it is the Rajapakse family that is developing in the South. The brother in law of the Supremo has purchased a Tea Estate worth Rs. 40 million. From where did he get all this money? he asked. To pave the road leading to the Estate with concrete, Rs. 95 lakhs had been collected from the people. more..

The Christian Runaway

Sep 10 (NW) Brian Williams wasn't sure what to make of his young friend's stories. He'd met Rifqa Bary, a high-school student from Gahanna, Ohio, at a prayer house at Ohio State University late last year. Intensely devout and deeply inquisitive, she recounted that she came from a Muslim family but had converted to Christianity. This had enraged her parents, who threatened her with violence, she said. She had to hide her faith, conceal her Bible, and sneak away to attend church. more..

Will next IGP be from military ranks?

Sep 10 (LG) Will the fall of Sri Lanka’s premier law enforcement system, the police service, into the abyss be resolved by appointment of an IGP from military ranks? Reading all the analysis into the police problem, beginning with the Soertsz Commission report in 1946, followed by the Basnayake Commission of 1970 and the police service report of 1995, demonstrate that the central problem of the policing system in Sri Lanka from more..

Tourists entrance fee at Pinnewela revised

Sep 10 (LP) The price of the entrance ticket of the Pinnewela Elephant Orphanage has been revised. The National Zoological Department informed that the price of the tickets issued for foreigners who visit the orphanage will be revised with effect of 01st of October 2009. Accordingly a ticket issued for an adult foreigner will be Rs 2000 while half rates will be charged on a child said the Department.

Monsoon Concerns

Sep 10 (BBC) A British charity worker who’s just visited camps holding more than a quarter of a million refugees in Sri Lanka says the military authorities in charge there are urgently concerned about the approaching monsoon. There was what many feared was an indication of things to come when sudden storms flooded these vast camps last month, submerging toilets, contaminating water and damaging thousands of huts.The monsoon is due next month. more..

Construction Chamber facilitates Sri Lanka’s first International Construction Fair

Sep 10 (AT) Excon 2009 will be hosted during the period 30th October to 1st November 2009 by the Chamber of Construction Industry Sri Lanka, as Sri Lanka's First International Construction Trade Fair. Excon 2009 is the 6th in the series of trade fairs presented by the Chamber. It is designed to enhance the capacities and competitiveness of the Domestic Construction Industry by: more..

'Sri Lanka can become hub for fast bowling'

Sep 10 (CI) Former Sri Lanka fast bowler Rumesh Ratnayake helped set up the Sri Lanka Fast Bowling Academy along with Western Australia coach Darryl Foster in 2000, and it is run today by another former fast bowler Anusha Samaranayake. But the man responsible for the country having an influx of quality fast-medium bowlers vying with each other for places in the national team is Champaka Ramanayake, the former Sri Lanka fast bowler. more..

Buddhists, Catholics draw inspiration from Blessed Teresa

Sep 10 (UCAN) Blessed Teresa of Kolkata's work and belief in non-violence have become an inspiration for Buddhists and Christians in this country as it recovers from decades of civil war. Representatives of both faiths took part in a Sept. 5 commemoration of the 12th anniversary of the death of the nun, known as the "saint of the gutters." The memorial lecture was organized by the Christian Alliance for Social Action (CASA), a Catholic group, at the Caritas Sri Lanka auditorium. more..

Rajapaksa moves to consolidate his power

Sep 10 (National) President, Mahinda Rajapaksa, after a stunning military victory against Tamil separatist rebels, is preparing a series of elections in a bid to consolidate power and, according to some supporters, ensure him many more years in office. Topping the agenda is the presidential election, not due until 2011, but which the government is strongly considering holding in December this year given what is seen as Mr Rajapaksa’s huge popularity. more..

Sri Lanka Unites: Our vision and work

Sep 10 (GV) Dear E Pluribus Unum, Thank you for taking the time to write. We were informed of your post, but as it was soon after our successful conference our attention was focused on many post-conference follow up activities that had to be done. We were also occupied with immediately leveraging on the networks built by the students over the 5 days, to engage them in community-level reconciliation initiatives. more..

Foreign Minister hosts Ifthar for the 3rd consecutive year

Sep 10 (GDI) Hosting the Ifthar (breaking fast) for the 3rd consecutive year, Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama stated that he began the tradition of hosting Ifthar during the holy month of Ramadhan following his appointment as the Minister of Foreign Affairs. He also stated that this tradition of celebrating important festivals and observances associated with the four major religions practised in Sri Lanka will continue. more..

Court refuses to restrain Indian cricket team from touring Sri Lanka

Sep 10 (Hindu) The Madras High Court Bench here on Wednesday declined to pass interim orders restraining the Centre and the BCCI from sending the Indian Cricket team to play the ongoing tri-series in Sri Lanka as a mark of protest against alleged genocide in the island nation. A Division Bench dismissed a miscellaneous (sub) petition by a lawyer here on the ground that the BCCI had no statutory obligation towards the petitioner. more..

Survivors must be allowed home

Sep 10 (Cafod) We are calling on the government of Sri Lanka to end the forced confinement of hundreds of thousands of survivors of the country’s long and bloody conflict and allow them to go home. Since the war ended, more than 280,000 Tamil survivors are still living in overcrowded and unhealthy conditions in camps in the north of the island. Freedom of movement for people forced to leave their homes remains restricted, as is access to the camps by the international community. more..

Sri Lankan "Between Two Worlds" an intriguing tale

Sep 10 (Reuters) Striking images and the suggestion that life is a series of random events that might be repeated make "Between Two Worlds" an intriguing Venice competition entry. With no narrative arc, Vimukthi Jayasundara's tale of life in Sri Lanka follows a young man who falls from the sky into the sea, clambers onto the shore and survives dangerous encounters in a city filled with rioting people and more..

Sri Lanka ancient rock citadel probed with hi-tec tools

Sep 10 (LBO) At Sigiriya, in central Sri Lanka, a group of geophysicists are probing the ground around an ancient rock fortress with ground penetrating radar, looking for man-made structures which are 1,500 years old. "We have already detected possible prospects," says geophysicist Nalin de Silva, who works for Sri Lanka's Geological Survey and Mines Bureau. The Bureau is using techniques normally used for prospecting minerals more..

Sri Lanka Army assisting Phlippines to demolish Abu Sayyaf

Sep 10 (LP) Sri Lanka Army Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe has made a presentation to the senior officials of the state and the Army of Philippines on the strategy Sri Lanka Army followed to demolish the Tamil rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Ealam (LTTE) that ran a bloody separatist campaign for more than three decades in northern and eastern parts of the Indian Ocean island. more..

Govt opens up captured territory for investors

Sep 10 (wsws) Since the defeat of the LTTE in May, the Sri Lankan government has pressed ahead with extensive plans to attract foreign investors and set up Special Economic Zones inside captured rebel territory. The pattern in the “liberated” northern areas follows similar developments in the Eastern Province, which was brought under army control in 2007. In its final offensives, the military depopulated large swathes of land stretching from more..

'The President an important character in world politics'

Sep 10 (GDI) The forthcoming southern provincial council election will usher a new era in the history of the South taking the United Peoples Freedom Alliance to greater heights. President Mahinda Rajapaksa has now become an important characters in the world politics. This has bestowed a deep sense respect in the people in the South, Minister Dalas Alahapperuma said at a media briefing in Colombo yesterday. more..

30 state officers appointed for Northern Province

Sep 10 (GDI) Thirty state officials have been recruited for Northern Province service by Governor of Northern Province, Major General G.A Chandrasiri. Of them, fifteen are Cultural Officers, eight Probation Officers, five Rural Development Officers and two Social Service Officers. These officers have been selected from Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu, Mannar and Vavuniya districts by the Provincial Public Service Commission. more..

A Six Star tourist hotel project

Sep 10 (GDI) A Six-Star Hotel Project is being designed for the first time in Sri Lanka targeting the development of tourism industry. The aim of the project is to bring the local tourism industry to international level by the year 2016,Tourism Ministry sources said. The Ministry of Tourism has agreed to develop the tourism and hotel sector with the support of foreign hotel companies. more..

Several projects to develop Southern Province

Sep 10 (GDI) The Ministry of Urban Development and Sacred Area Development has taken steps to launch massive development projects in the Hambantota, Galle and Matara Districts at a cost Rs.12 billion. According to these sources more than Five Billion rupees will be spent on urban development activities in the Matara District. The Matara Hospital Complex, the Kotuwegoda Market Complex, the Dickwella Ayurveda Hospital, more..

World Suicide Prevention Day today

Sep 10 (GDI) At a time suicide hits peak, suicide figures in some developing and under developed nations is on the rise today as the world moves into educate people on dangers of suicide. World Suicide Prevention Day today (10) is an annual event sponsored by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) in collaboration with the World Health Organization. more..

Debrief News - 09.09.2009

Warning against lucrative job offers in Spain

Sep 10 (GDI) With evidences coming into light that an organized group is engaged in a racket to collect money by pledging lucrative jobs in Spain, the Hony Consul General for Sri Lanka in Spain informs public to refraining from getting caught into this fraudulent attempt. The Hony Consul General for Sri Lanka in Madrid has informed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka of a fraudulent scheme that offers lucrative jobs for foreigners including Sri Lankans in Spain, more..

Productivity Award Ceremony tomorrow

Sep 10 (GDI) The Provincial Productivity Award ceremony for the Sabaragamuwa, North Western and Uva provinces organized by National Productivity Secretariat will be held on tomorrow (11). The provincial award ceremony was held on Kalutara recently and the Sri Lanka Air Force received an award as the best Department in the Western Province. Under this category in Southern Province, both Hambanthota and Matara district Secretariats won the first prize. more..

Sports and Arts contribute to North and South bond

Sep 10 (LP) “Nagenahira Mulakkam”, a new programme with Sports, Arts and entertainment, to strengthen the bond between the North and the South is under way. The event will be staged on the 26th of September at the Kalladi Beach in Batticaloa under the guidance of H.E President Mahinda Rajapaks. The programme is also launched with the support of Eastern Province Chief Minister Sivaneshathurai Chandrakanthan, and the eastern provincial council. more..

Empty Gas cylinders emerge from Sugandipuram

Sep 10 (LP) Troops in search operations conducted in the Sugandipuram area in Mullaittivu recovered several Gas cylinders from the area yesterday. Troops recovered 150 13.5kg empty Gas cylinders, 34 29.5kg empty Gas cylinders and 05 2.5kg empty Gas cylinders from the area. Same troops recovered 05 Air craft oil cans each containing 18.9L in search operations conducted in the Kuppilankulam said the MCNS. more..

President has power to "pardon" Tissainayagam immediately

Sep 10 (TC) It was a week dominated by the unprecedented sentencing of senior journalist JS Tissainayagam to twenty years hard labour under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) No 48 of 1979 (as amended) and prevalent Emergency Regulations for the writing of two articles in a journal some years back. A third charge related to the obtaining of funds to run that journal, thereby constituting the collection of monies for the furtherance of terrorist acts. more..

Special Drug Rehabilitation Unit at Pallekelle Prison

Sep 10 (AT) Government has opened up a Special Drug Rehabilitation Unit at Pallekelle Prison for prisoners who were earlier confirmed drug addicts. Accordingly, more than 500 drug addicts imprisoned due to crimes related to drug dependency were recently transferred to a new rehabilitation centre set up at the Pallekelle Prison Camp. These prisoners will receive counseling and treatment for drug addiction while they serve their sentences for the offences committed. more..

Irakkamam PS gets two Sinhala DS dvsns

Sep 10 (PSM) Two G.S. divisions from the Damana Pradehiya Sabah have been annexed to the Irrakkamam Pradeshiya Sabah causing much concern among the Muslims of Irakkamam. There were 500 Sinhalese voters within the area of the Irakkamam Pradeshiya Sabah at present and by annexing these two G.S divisions, 800 more Sinhalese voters would be taken in to it. There is a possibility of a Sinhalese member elected to the Irakkamam Pradeshiya Sabah at the next PS local election from this Sabah. more..

2000 acres of paddy fields around Yodha Wewa cleared of landmines

Sep 10 (LP) The Army says that landmines have been removed in about two thousand acres of paddy field in Yodha Wewa- Mannar and its environs. The farmers would get the opportunity to commence cultivations. About two thousand acres of paddy fields is expected to be cultivated in Jaffna. Plans have been drawn up to resettle in 35 villages in Vavuniya and its nearby villages. more..

Karu Jayasuriya taking over UNP leadership can make a difference

Sep 10 (TC) The well read correspondent Shani in her article in the issue of the Island 0f 29th August has referred to a statement made in Parliament and stated "He is devoid of party politics. He obviously spoke from his heart when he made an impassioned plea for the IDPs housed in various camps. He marked himself as a rare and mature politician, a breed that we thought was o the verge of extinction, when he stated more..

Is conscience of state clear on treatment of IDP's?

Sep 10 (TC) The government of Sri Lanka, as should be expected, has taken strong exception to what it claims is fabricated video footage, telecast over the UK’s Channel 4 TV, showing the Lankan security forces, apparently, carrying out what could amount to war crimes, in the concluding stages of their mid May assault on the LTTE in the North. The government and other concerned sections could very well be right in describing the content of the video as more..

18 Senior CID officers come under the axe – transferred to Kilinochchi

Sep 10 (LeN) On the orders of DIG Nanda Munasinghe in charge of the CID, 18 senior police officers of the CID with several years experience in that division have been transferred to Kilinochchi. 12 of these 18 Officers are from the investigation unit. Mr. Munasinghe succeeded DIG Sisira Munasinghe who was earlier in charge of the CID. Prior to becoming the DIG , Mr. Munasinghe has been an SSP in the Division. more..

Indian hospital for IDPs returns after six months of operation in Sri Lanka

Sep 10 (LeN) After six months of successful operation, providing medical assistance to over 50,000 IDPs, the India-run field hospital in Manik Farm is returning to India. During the period, the hospital as part of its operation utilized medical supplies and drugs worth SLR 100 million. In addition, Government of India donated medicines and other medical supplies worth SLR 125 million to the Ministry of Health, Government of Sri Lanka. more..

Mervin shows Chinese acrobats

Sep 10 (LT) There are reports that Minister of Labour (Dr.) Mervin Silva visited Kerawalapitiya Power Station on the 8th and during his visit assaulted Chinese employees working in the project. All Chinese employees working in the project demonstrated against the assault during the lunch break yesterday as there had been no action taken by authorities regarding the assault. The reason for the assault has not been revealed yet. more..

India pressurizing Lanka to protect Tamils' rights in Sri Lanka

Sep 10 (AT) India is putting "tremendous pressure" on the Sri Lankan Government to protect the rights of the Tamils, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said here on Thursday. Refuting the charge made by some pro-LTTE opposition parties in Tamil Nadu that the Manmohan Singh Government remained a mute spectator during the final phase of the war between Government forces and the LTTE, leading to the latter's decimation, more..

President’s flunkey engaged in ‘preferential’ war

Sep 10 (LT) UPFA candidate for Galle District at the Southern PC election Sachin Vas Gunawardene has unleashed ‘preferential vote seeking’ terror campaign targeting candidates and supporters of the opposition as well as his own party say election monitors. They point out that as a result of an attack carried out by supporters of Sachin Vas Gunawardene on Thawalama Pradeshiya Sabha Member of the JVP Dharshana Sampath and a group of JVP supporters they have been admitted to Hiniduma Hospital. more..

Ranaviru Upahara at Nalanda College

Sep 10 (LNP) The Eighth Ranaviru Upahara ceremony organized by the Nalanda College Junior Old Boys Association was held recently with the participation of Defence Secretary Godabhaya Rajapaksa as the Chief Guest. Guests of Honours were Chief of Defence Staff Sarath N. Fonseka, Army Commander Lt. General Jagath Jayasuriya, Navy Commander Vice Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe, Air Force Commander Air Chief Marshal Roshan Goonetileke and IGP Jayantha Wickremaratne. more..

‘Journalists against Suppression’ take to the streets

Sep 10 (LT) A protest campaign organized by ‘Journalists against suppression’ against the suppression launched by the government against the media was held opposite Fort Railway Station today. The protest campaign was held to protest against the unlawful arrest of three journalists from ‘Lanka Irida’ and repression launched against journalists who expose fraud and corruption of the government. more..

UNP would be a minority party after Southern polls

Sep 10 (LNP) Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne yesterday said the UNP would be reduced to a minority party after the Southern Provincial Council elections while the UPFA was aiming at gaining over 80% of votes. As former UNPers we feel sorry for the grand old party. I personally told the party leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to touch the flower tray and contribute to the journey to peace and prosperity when President Mahinda Rajapaksa invited the UNP to support the government. more..

Discipline a must during SP elections - President

Sep 10 (LNP) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has directed the candidates contesting the forthcoming Southern Provincial Council election to maintain a high degree of discipline at all times. Those who get involved in unlawful activities will be severely dealt with, the President has warned. Transport Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said the President has issued special directives to all Southern Provincial Council candidates not to embroil themselves in the fray for preferential votes. more..

Come September not good for tourism in SL -Hoteliers

Sep 10 (LNP) Tourism is a fast-growing industry, but with the credit crunch in 2008, figures have dropped as people have less money to spend and companies are unable to expand as rapidly. However, with the recent defeat of the Tamil Tigers, tourism along with other industries is expected to rise and shine in the near future. With the large scale promotions taking place all over the world and the actual ground work, the tourism sector seems to be causing much buzz around these days. more..

'Auditors must maintain highest level of integrity and independence'

Sep 10 (DN) As the country’s sole financial watchdog, the Auditor General’s Department has been auditing all Government institutions including the Local Government bodies and reporting to the Parliament on how these institutions have spent public funds. The Auditor General’s Department has been tasked to assure the Parliament that the Government’s financial activities are carried out and more..