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Belgian company Rosalia Diamonds to start new project in Sri Lanka

Sep 26 (BOI) The Board of Investment of Sri Lanka granted investment approval Rosalia Diamonds (Private) Limited to commence operations. Mr. Dhammika Perera, Chairman signed the agreements on behalf of the BOI and formally presented the BOI Certificate of Registration to the investors. An agreement to set up a venture to cut and polish diamonds for export was signed with Rosalia Diamonds (Private) Limited. more..

Govt. to avoid blame of fraud & corruption disclaims ‘Maga Neguma’

Sep 26 (LT) With the exposure of frauds and corruption in ‘Maga Neguma’ the government is attempting to evade responsibility by claiming that ‘Maga Neguma’ is not a state institution. As such, any matter regarding ‘Maga Neguma’ could not be questioned in Parliament claims the government. With all its attempts to evade responsibility the government started ‘Maga Neguma’ utilizing vehicles and work sites that belonged to RCDD, a state enterprise when more..

Debrief News - 25.09.2009

PM tells Asia Society of challenges in post-war Sri Lanka

Sep 26 (AS) Rebuilding Sri Lanka after 25 years of civil war will require resettling thousands, encouraging foreign investment, and preventing a resurgence of the LTTE, said Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayake. The war between the government and the LTTE ended in May 2009 after the military reportedly killed Tamil leader Velupillai Prabhakaran. “Sri Lanka suffered for almost three decades of destruction from terrorism by the LTTE,” said Wickramanayake. more..

Hundreds of Thousands Still Displaced in Sri Lanka

Sep 26 (AP) A U.N. human rights expert on Friday visited Sri Lanka's military-run detention camps where nearly 300,000 war-displaced civilians have been held since the country's civil war ended four months ago. Walter Kaelin, the U.N. secretary-general's representative for the human rights of internally displaced persons, visited camps in northern Vavuniya and Mannar districts, said Sulakshani Perera, spokeswoman for the U.N.'s refugee agency. more..

Sri Lanka: The Newborn Care Programme

Sep 26 (AT) In Sri Lanka more than 380,000 women become pregnant yearly, of them around 220 die of pregnancy related causes. Approximately 3500 babies die as still births and 43,000 low birth weight babies and others with neonatal complications may live, but do not reach their full potential. At least 4200 babies die in the first year of life; about 3100 of them die within the first 28 days. Up to the 19th century care of the mother and the child was mostly a domestic affair. more..

What should be the foreigin policy focus of Sri Lanka

Sep 26 (AT) Foreign policy of a country in modern era may impact on the progress or destruction of the country as internationalism and global integration clearly indicates that the world has been gradually dividing into power blocs again though the ending of cold war signaled that divisions of the world will be ended with the cold war. After the independence under the UNP administration, Sri Lanka’s foreign policy demonstrated a supportive role for Western Industrialized countries and more..

U.S. Govt donates computers to start Jaffna training center

Sep 26 (AT) The USAID provided computers to help establish a computer training center and provide job skills training to youth in Jaffna. USAID, the development agency of the U.S. Government, provided computers to the All Ceylon Hindu Congress Research and Study Center in Jaffna to establish a computer training facility. The All Ceylon Hindu Congress is a training partner of the Unlimited Potential Partnership program (UPP), more..

England Beat Sri Lanka at the Wanderers

Sep 26 (CI) Sometimes you just have to get away from it all to find what you are really looking for. After embracing embarrassment throughout a lamentable one-day series against Australia, England's cricketers travelled 6000 miles south from Durham to Johannesburg, where to the astonishment of players, spectators and pundits alike, they atoned for their shortcomings by toppling the tournament pace-setters, Sri Lanka, in their opening match of the Champions Trophy. more..

SWRD Bandaranaike: Assassination of a Prime Minister

Sep 26 (DBS) September 26th 1959 is an important date in the post-independence history of Sri Lanka. It was on this day fifty years ago that the Prime Minister Solomon West Ridgeway Dias Bandaranaike (SWRDB) of the then Ceylon passed away. He had been shot the previous day by a Buddhist priest. The past decades have seen hundreds of political assassinations in Sri Lanka. more..

Whither APRC: One step forward, two steps back?

Sep 26 (LG) In spite of the fact that all basic elements of constitutional changes are flagged in the constitutional discourse in the last 25 years and that the APRC does not have to invent the wheel once again, people have been enthusiastically looking for how APRC would propose to combine those elements in its final proposals. Democratic forces in the country have recognized that the new constitution includes a multi-tier system of government, more..

Buddhism, Science and Socialism

Sep 26 (LG) Early human thinkers identified movements, change of power, eternal problem of identity and negation of things. They believed reality consisted of interplay of several energy forms Greeks named these as gods of Olympus. Indians claimed these as "Maha Bhuta”. Similar views can be found in other early communities. This view of matter as “non matter’ or as forms arising out of change was the beginning of human understanding of reality. more..

The Necessity for the enactment of “ The Sri Lanka Patriot Act”

Sep 26 (LG) We cannot restore peace unless we can find some way to bring the nation close together. We must be Patriotic. We must uphold and defend the Constitution and the Head of State-the President. We owe allegiance to the President and the Constitution as Citizens of Sri Lanka. We must uphold the norms of the Constitution apprehend and prosecute those who terrorize us by their actions and threats, then economic prosperity will follow suit. more..

Tamil Chauvinism

Sep 26 (LG) Personally, I am opposed to divisive racial politics of any kind. Anyone calling for a Sinhala state or Sinhala favoritism is rightly called a Sinhala chauvinist. I think the same label should be applied to those calling for a Tamil state or Tamil favoritism. There are more important issues at hand for the future of all of our children, no matter what race they are. This is not to deny the very real issues that Tamil people face, or to argue against cultural identities. more..

5 Rajapakse Family members as District Leaders for next Gen. election

Sep 26 (LeN) According to sources within the SLFP, five members of the family of Mahinda Rajapakse will be contesting as district leaders at the next Gen. election. President’s elder brother Chamala Rajapakse as Ratnapura District leader, younger brother Basil Rajapakse as Gampaha leader, Gotabaya Rajapakse as Kurunegala leader, Uva PC Chief Minister Sashindra Rajapakse as Moneragala leader and Mahinda Rajapakse‘s elder son, Naomal Rajapakse as Hambantota District leader. more..

14 days remand for merely writing ‘Is this the Democracy of this maha jara Rajapakse Govt.?'

Sep 26 (LeN) Danister Gunasekera ,the owner of the premises, where the JVP displayed a Hoarding with the slogan ‘Is this the Democracy of the maha jara Rajapakse Govt.?’ was remanded for 14 days on charges of attempting to bring contempt on Govt.,according to JVP sources. The JVP put this Board up in protest at 153/1/13 Aluthgoda, Tangalle after its elections office which was run legitimately by it at this premises was last 18th, more..

Heritance Hotel

Tea prices up again on supply shortfall

Sep 26 (LBO) Prices of Sri Lanka's high grown teas made by plantation firms rose again at the Colombo auctions this week owing to supply shortages, brokers said. The local crop has been affected by drought earlier this year followed by recent labour union action that disrupted production and transport of made tea from estates owned by listed plantations companies. Supply shortages caused by drought in other origins like Kenya and more..

Globally 26m IDPs : Larger picture behind Sri Lanka's IDPs

Sep 26 (AT) The latest buzzword today is obviously IDP. Many are not aware of or fail to acknowledge that gglobally, there are 11.4 million refugees and 26 million Internally Displaced Person (IDPs), according to the latest estimates from United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). It is little Sri Lanka that has to bear the brunt of accusations for the manner it is looking after the IDPs. more..

Lanka laments the plight of 51 fishermen in Indian custody

Sep 26 (AT) With the 21 Tamil Nadu fishermen held by the Navy here now ready to head home, Sri Lanka today lamented the plight of their 51 fishermen in Andaman island, being detained for the past seven months. The 21 fishermen caught by the Navy two weeks ago are now in the premises of the Indian High Commission in Colombo awaiting a meeting point by Indian authorities to hand them over officially, more..

Largest stock of machinery from China

Sep 26 (GDI) The largest stock of equipment imported by a Government in Sri Lanka’s history is being unloaded at the Colombo Harbour. These mchineries weere imported from China. This is the largest stock of machinery imported. The Government obtained the stock to carry out development in the Northern region. Massive development is already in place in the North on the instructions of the President. more..

Jaffna Lagoon scheme

Sep 26 (GDI) The Ministry of Construction & Engineering Services has taken steps to rehabilitate Jaffna Lagoon scheme balance work at Thondamanaru barrage and rehabilitation of Ariyale barrage, kapoothu bund and other 13 earth Bunds. According to the Ministry sources, steps also have been taken to convert following 3 lagoons into fresh water lakes by constructing barrages and bunds whenever necessary. more..

Development of East Coast Tourist Resort Region

Sep 26 (GDI) In the Trincomalee District, an area of approximately 500 acres have been identified for tourism development projects. The land earmarked for projects borders the beach and is situated in the village of Kuchchaveli, north of the popular Nilaveli beach. A Conceptual Zoning Plan is currently being prepared for the area by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) with the assistance of the Urban Development Authority (UDA). more..

Citizenship for IDPs

Sep 26 (LP) IDPs in Vavuniya and Mannar who do not posses Sri Lankan citizenship will be provided citizenship. Accordingly over 400 children who were born in India and returned to the country will be provided with citizenship under the special program. Those who do not possess the Sri Lankan citizenship is requested to produce both Sri Lankan and Indian birth certificates, Identity Card issued for refugees by the Government of India, passport and the birth certificate of the parents. more..

Iniquitous duplicity of western policy

Sep 26 (LG) It was in the midst of the recent Afghan polls, which have become a worry to President Obama in convincing US citizens of the needs for the US to be more involved in Afghanistan, and indeed for the same reasons for Gordon Brown too, that German Officers of the NATO Command there called for US air support to retrieve two fuel tankers hi-jacked by the Taliban. The air attacks that followed killed more than 60 civilians, which led to the US Commander there making the usual apology and promising an inquiry. more..

Rajani Thiranagama: Making of a new revolutionary

Sep 26 (LG) On the morning of 22 September 1989 I was asked to come to a safe house in Colombo to receive an urgent message from Jaffna. Some friends of mine were waiting there with a messenger who had come from Jaffna and who had had lunch with Rajani on the previous day. She wasted no time or words in delivering the message. "Your wife, Rajani, was shot by a gunman yesterday afternoon on her way home from the university. more..

Unite to rebuild the country – President

Sep 26 (GDI) President Rajapaksa has urged the entire nation not to be treacherous to their motherland no matter whatever aspersions were cast on him. He pointed out that he is used to defamation from the day the Tsunami lashed the country. When someone is treacherous towards the country, he would not hesitate to act against such elements,the President noted. They have no right to go against the country,said the President. more..

Clash between Muslims and Police at Polanaruwa

Sep 26 (LS) A clash incident had occurred in the Northern Central Province, in the district of Polnaruwa, at the Dambaalai, Galwela junction among the Muslims and police. The Divisional Council with the assistance of Police was attempting to remove the shopping outlets belonging to the Mosque, the said incident occurred. It was stated that the said shopping outlets are build in the divisional council land, hence the council decided this action, but more..

Complaint made armed persons roaming in the Yala forest area

Sep 26 (LS) Complaints are made that armed persons are roaming in the Yala Forest area. The people living closer to the Yala forest areas are living with much alarm is according to information. Groups wearing black dress, with T56 rifles are roaming in the forest areas and speculations are they may be LTTE members. A special operation has commenced by the military forces along with police officers to find the armed group. more..

3000 persons from Vavuniya Internment camps escaped – military

Sep 26 (LS) According to military information, 3000 persons had escaped from the Vavuniya Internment camps. Vanni Commanding Chief Major General Kamal Gunaratne informed, a statistics was taken from the displaced people sheltered in the Vavuniya refugee camps, and such figures were able to gather. The Divisional Government Agent Department had published an information, approximately 10000 persons from the Vavuniya displaced camps are missing. more..

JVP goes to Human Rights Commission against RDA

Sep 26 (LT) The group of candidates of the JVP for the Southern PC election from Hambantota District has complained to Human Rights Commission against Road Development Authority (RDA) stating their fundamental rights were violated when a case was filed against them by RDA alleging that they had harmed roads belonging to RDA. The complaint filed against the Chairman of RDA states the Chairman of RDA and its authorities have filed an unnecessary case against more..

‘Lanka Irida’ disappears from Monaragala

Sep 26 (LT) The complete stock of ‘Lanka Irida,’ issued yesterday, has been bought by an organized group from paper stands in all the towns in Monaragala District say reports. According to paper stand owners the group that had visited the paper stands early morning bought the entire stock of ‘Lanka Irida’ available for sale. The reason for the ‘disappearing’ of the newspaper may be connected to the article regarding the letters sent by more..

Whither Sri Lanka liberated from the terror of ‘Tamil Tigers’?

Sep 26 (TC) Despite the annihilation of the ‘LTTE’, the future of Sri Lanka seems to be increasingly uncertain with the top government leaders concerned more about safeguarding their hold on power than the future of the country. Not only the comments on my last article ‘Unity not unitary will safeguard the future’ (Tamilweek 6 September 2009), but also others expressed recently by more..

IDP children get special attention for Children's Day

Sep 26 (MoD) The Child Development and Women's Empowerment Ministry has made arrangements to celebrate International Children's Day 2009 under the theme `Let us build a unified Nation for our children', Child Development and Women's Empowerment Minister Sumedha G. Jayasena said. She said the national ceremony to mark the day will be held on October 1 at 9.00 a.m. at the Kularatne Hall, Ananda College, Colombo under the patronage of more..

India’s double standard has betrayed Tamils in Sri Lanka – CPI (ML)

Sep 26 (LG) “The government of India has always maintained double standard on issues affecting Sri Lanka. It is more concerned about economic benefits rather than dealing with the humanitarian crisis faced by the Tamil people in Sri Lanka,” Mr. Balasunderam , the State Secretary of the CPI (ML) Tamil Nadu said in an exclusive interview to the Sri Lanka Guardian at his office in Chennai. more..

“Buy our own”

Sep 26 (LP) With the intention of cutting down the cost on imported wheat flour, a workshop on rice flour based products was held at the Ceylon Continental Hotel in Colombo yesterday under the project of introducing rice flour based products to the Sri Lankan market. The project is also launched with the intention of improving health habits as it is reported that many diseases are related to the consumption of refined white wheat flour. more..

8th Asia Cooperation Dialogue Ministerial Meeting in Colombo in October

Sep 26 (LP) The Government of Sri Lanka will host the 8th Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) Ministerial Meeting in Colombo on 15 October this year at the BMICH. The theme of this year’s meeting is ‘Spirit of Asia: Global Economic Recovery and Development Prospects’. At the 6th ACD Ministerial Meeting held in Seoul, Republic of Korea, Sri Lanka offered to host this prestigious grouping. more..

Survivor assistance in Jaffna & Vanni

Hurling facts and figures at critics

Sep 26 (LNP) The government has, for once, made a meaningful attempt to counter the flak it has come under from various quarters over the question of IDPs. Instead of hurling abuse at its enemies, it has thrown figures at them this time around. Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said that over 40,000 of 280,000 IDPs had already been resettled. Four months have barely elapsed since the dust settled on the battlefront and the resettlement of so many IDPs is no mean achievement. more..

Cerestar to invest Rs 100 m on food products

Sep 26 (LNP) Cerestar (Pvt) Ltd will invest Rs 100 million to manufacture healthy food products using 100 percent locally grown raw material. The pilot project includes a range of nutritionally enriched flavoured snacks, breakfast cereals and functional food products. Managing Director, Cerestar (Pvt) Ltd Prabath Fonseka said that the new 15,000 sq. ft. factory at Bandaragama will be opened by Prime Minister more..

The shots that shook the world

Sep 26 (DN) It was on the morning of Friday September 25, 1959-50 years ago - that the fourth Prime Minister of Sri Lanka Solomon West Ridgeway Dias Bandaranaike, was brutally gunned down at his Rosmead Place residence in Colombo, by a fanatic, saffron-robed Buddhist monk. Having resigned my permanent, pensionable and secure job in the Posts and Telecommunications Department after 7 1/2 years of service, in August 1959, I became a "Stringer" reporter for more..

ADIC not responsible for Hikkaduwa pictures

Sep 26 (DN) The Alcohol and Drug Information Centre (ADIC) yesterday denied any responsibility for the fake e-mail which recently created a wrong impression about the ‘Hikkaduwa Beach Festival’ organised by the Tourism Ministry. The ADIC in a statement issued yesterday said that even though three of its employees have been arrested and remanded for alleged involvement in the preparation and distribution of the said e-mail they had performed the said act in their private capacities and more..

President decries false propaganda

Sep 26 (DN) Certain leaders who want to internationalise Sri Lanka’s domestic problems without trying to solve them locally are trying to spread false propaganda against the Government which eradicated terrorism that dogged the country for three decades, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said. The President addressed delegates of SLFP Women’s Organisations in Matara and Hambantota districts at Medamulana yesterday. more..

Shortage of specialist doctors

Sep 26 (DN) The Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry is now facing a severe shortage of specialist doctors because 215 doctors who had been sent abroad for specialized training at a cost of Rs. 228 million have ‘disappeared’, a Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry spokesman said. He said that since 2004, the Ministry had sent 1,915 Sri Lankan doctors abroad for specialized training spending millions of public funds. more..

'Govt. unconcerned about people’s sufferings and State Institution losses'

Sep 26 (UNP) UNP Kesbewa Organizer and Western provincial Council member Niroshan Padukka said, this Govt. is possessed of a unique trait, that is encourage loss incurring Institutions to lose more, and to convert profit making concerns into loss making national disasters. Is this attitude of this Govt. because the Govt. suffers nothing from the losses; for all burdens of these losses are passed and heaped on the masses, while more..

Sangakkara lauds Strauss's gesture

Sep 26 (AFP) Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara has praised his England counterpart Andrew Strauss for recalling his batsman after he was run out during a Champions Trophy match here on Friday. Sri Lankan Angelo Mathews turned England fast bowler Graham Onions to square-leg and completed a first run comfortably but collided with the bowler going for a second. Wicket-keeper Matt Prior effected the run out after receiving the throw. more..

Indian Christians urge help for Sri Lankan refugees

Sep 26 (CT) Tamil Christians in India are supporting nearly 300,000 Tamil refugees in Sri Lanka who have been in temporary camps for the past six months. The refugees, many of them Christians, were displaced by the conflict between Sri Lankan army and the Tamil militants, the LTTE, which came to an end in May this year after 26 years. In a memorandum submitted to the government of India, Tamil Christians in India said, “Thousands are dying of hunger and difficulties in the refugee camps”. more..

UPFA repeats UNP tactics

Sep 26 (Island) The Parliament adjourned yesterday due to a lack of quorum, thereby preventing UNP Ravi Karunanayake, MP from presenting a motion on the shortcomings at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at an adjournment debate. Minister Lasantha Alagiyawanna brought to the notice of the Chair that there was no quorum. Only 17 members had responded to the quorum bell while Alagiyawanna, who initially pointed out the absence of the required number of members, too, left the Chamber. more..

'Muthuhettigama may not run for elections'

Sep 26 (DM) Galle district UPFA candidate Nishantha Muthuhettigama, who had recently been referred to a psychiatrist after being released on bail, may not continue in the upcoming Southern Provincial Council electoral race, said UPFA general secy. Susil Premajayantha yesterday. The minister told Daily Mirror that the former provincial council member and UPFA organizer had the liberty to proceed with the election, but may not continue in the election race. more..

No defeat is good defeat, says Sangakkara

Sep 26 (Gulf) Sri Lankan skipper Kumar Sangakkara is still to come to terms with his team’s defeat to England. After having beaten the strong South African team on their soil, Sri Lanka was supposed to beat England easily; but he was shocked by his team’s batting. He spoke about his team’s defeat. Q: Did you expect such a defeat? Our top order batted badly. If not for Thilna Kandamby and Angelo Mathews, I don't think we would have even reached the 200 run mark. more..