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Candidates reluctant to declare assets

Mar 1 (DM) Election monitors said that the candidates of respective political parties and independent groups were not keen on declaration of their assets to the Elections Commissioner in the run up to the parliamentary election. According to the law, candidates are required to declare their assets within three months after handing over nominations to contest the election. more..

The Physical Assassin in Front and the Soul Assassin at the Back

Mar 1 (TC) This personal letter written by Prageeth Eknaligoda to a non relative daughter living in abroad provides window to his perceptions on political - military terror that has engulfed Sri Lankan Society. Written two months after he was abducted for the first time and later being dropped in a quarry in August 2009, this is a personal narrative of his life after the abduction. more..

Now, Ranil promises salary hike

Mar 1 (DM) UNP and Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe on Saturday said that the UNP-led UNF would shortly reveal a plan to reduce the cost of living. He also promised a salary increase to workers in the event of winning the upcoming parliamentary polls. He said that their plan would be unveiled within two weeks. Defeated presidential candidate Gen. (retd) Sarath Fonseka pledged Rs. 10,000 salary increase to public servants. more..

'UNP & JVP have deteriorated due to poor political decisions'

Mar 1 (GDI) Experienced individuals with national and international recognition have been nominated from the UPFA to contest the forthcoming general election, Minister Maithreepala Sirisena said. Women represent 6 percent, while 13 percent represent the legal profession, 3 percent the medical profession, 2 percent the engineering profession, 6 percent the teaching profession and 12 percent represent youth. more..

AG ordered to look into provision of security for ex-MPs in opposition

Mar 1 (CT) The Attorney General has been ordered to furnish a report to the Supreme Court on the possibility of providing security for former opposition parliamentarians. The court made the order today (Mar. 01) after considering a petition filed by 17 ex-MPs in the opposition, challenging the removal of security provided to them. A three-member panel of SC judges headed by justice Nimal Gamini Amaratunga took up the petition. more..

Media flouting EC's directives to be prosecuted!

Mar 1 (LT) The Commissioner of Elections has decided to take legal action regarding print and electronic media which do not adhere to the criteria enforced by him. The Commissioner of elections had issued a set of criteria and standards that had to be followed by state and private media and political parties have filed petition in courts regarding non implementation of such criteria and standards. more..

HRCSL urges Independent team to probe against Fonseka

Mar 1 (DM) The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) observed the importance of appointing an independent investigation team to inquire into the allegations against General Sarath Fonseka, who is currently under military custody. The Director of the Commission Samanthi Jayamanne said General Fonseka expressed his doubts over the impartiality of investigations as the officers who arrested him were more..

NFF protests, petitions against British foreign secretary

Mar 1 (CT) The National Freedom Front today staged a protest and handed over a petition against British foreign secretary David Miliband?s participation in a pro-LTTE conference in London. Led by party leader Wimal Weerawansa, the NFF demonstrated in front of the British high commission in Colombo. The petition addressed to prime minister of Britain Gordon Brown voiced utmost protest and more..

Sri Lanka aid donors urged not to give 'blank cheque'

Mar 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka should not be given a "blank cheque" to revive its war-torn economy unless the political problem that generated the conflict is settled, an international non-governmental advocacy body has said. Western governments and multilateral funding agencies which give loans and aid to the island can press the government to ensure a lasting solution that addresses the grievances of minority Tamils, the International Crisis Group (ICG) said. more..

"I have seen things I never thought I would, so much death"

Mar 2 (IRIN) This time last year, Arulamma Thambiraja, 99, was among tens of thousands of civilians trapped in Sri Lanka's north by fighting between government forces and the since-defeated LTTE. When the fighting reached her village of Navajeevanam, near the town of Paranthan in Kilinochchi district in January 2009, her family fled deeper into areas controlled by the LTTE. She was carried on a chair by her sons and grandchildren during most of their journey. more..

Tamils' spokesman 'Alex' jumps ship

Mar 2 (SMH) Sanjeev 'Alex' Kuhendrarajah, who gained fame as spokesman for 254 Sir Lankan asylum seekers who refused to leave their boat after being intercepted on their way to Australia, has disappeared. A fellow Tamil said that Mr Kuhendrarajah left the squalid, wooden vessel that has been home to the asylum seekers for more than five months early yesterday morning. more..

3,500 pilgrims from India take part in Kachchatheevu festival

Mar 2 (Hindu) Around 3,500 pilgrims from India on Saturday and Sunday took part in the St. Antony’s Church festival in Kachchatheevu after a gap of 27 years. Top officials of Sri Lankan security forces led by General Mahinda Hathurashinga, Commander, Security Forces, Jaffna Peninsula, and K. Ganesh, Government Agent, Jaffna, and Indian High Commission officials received both Indian and Sri Lankan pilgrims at Kachchatheevu. more..

Shares at new high; foreigners exit

Mar 2 (Reuters) Share prices hit a new record high on Monday led by retail buying, despite the departure of foreign investors amidst political and economic concerns. The All-Share Price Index gained 0.94 percent to hit a new high of 3843.67 points, surpassing its previous all-time high hit on Feb. 28. It closed 17.44 points or 0.46 percent up at 3825.30. "It's retailer-driven and the market will further go up due to retailers," more..

‘Remote Village’ concept to be wiped-out

Mar 2 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapakse has said that the government has already started to wipe out the term “remote villages” from the map of Sri Lanka. The Government has already earmarked the difficult villages to be developed soon. The president made these remarks at a ceremony held at the historic Raja Maha Viharaya at Pelmadulla. The ceremony was organised to invoke blessings on the President for a 2nd term in office. more..

Jayasuriya takes flak after entering politics

Mar 2 (AFP) Veteran Sri Lanka batsman Sanath Jayasuriya came under fire Monday for his decision to enter politics while still playing for the national team. Jayasuriya will contest April 8 parliamentary elections as a candidate for President Mahinda Rajapakse’s Freedom Alliance party in his home constituency of Matara. The 40 year-old, the oldest cricketer still playing at the top level in the world, more..

'Fonseka political prisoner'

Mar 2 (bbC) The former chief justice of Sri Lanka has described the former military chief, Gen Sarath Fonseka, as a political prisoner. Launching an online petition calling for the release of Gen Fonseka, former CJ Sarath Nanda Silva said his arrest is illegal according to the constitution and the international law. Mr. Silva was the first to add his name to the online petition in freesarathfonseka website. more..

Debrief News Video - 01. 03. 2010

Sri Lanka clothing industry – ‘We will have ethics but no business’

Mar 2 (EC) Sri Lanka’s clothing industry has been admired for improving working conditions but it is now in crisis. Not through its own fault, but because of the Sri Lankan government’s alleged war crimes against ethnic minorities. The European commission is in the process of withdrawing concessionary zero-rated duty tariffs for imports from Sri Lanka. more..

14 LTTE suspects to be detained further

Mar 2 (GDI) The CID has been permitted to detain 14 LTTE suspects who were arrested from welfare camps for further interrogation. They were arrested under the emergency regulations by the CID. Colombo Chief Magistrate Champa Janaki Rajaratne ordered them to be detained for 90 days for interrogation, the CID officials said. The Terrorist Investigation Division took them in to custody from the welfare villages following the humanitarian operation. more..

Pineapple cultivators express concern

Mar 2 (FP) Pineapple cultivators in the Gampaha District expressed concern about the heavy losses incurred by them due to the increasing production costs and for want of a profitable market for their produce. They pointed out that the increasing prices of fertilizer and agro chemicals seriously affected them. A pineapple cultivator of Rathupaswala, stressed the need to provide a fertiliser subsidy to the pineapple cultivators as in the case of paddy cultivators. more..

Dateline: War Stories

Key political risks to watch in Sri Lanka

Mar 2 (Reuters) Sri Lanka holds parliamentary elections on April 8 amid economic worries, not least the IMF's decision to delay the third tranche of a $2.6 billion loan after the government missed its 2009 deficit reduction targets. Following is a summary of key political risks to watch: * PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS: Newly re-elected President Mahinda Rajapaksa is proceeding full speed ahead towards the April polls, more..

Court orders probe on State TV

Mar 2 (BBC) The Supreme Court in Sri Lanka has ordered the authorities of Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation to establish an independent panel to investigate charges against sacked media workers. Authorities were also ordered to include a retired judge into the panel. A three-member bench chaired by Justice Shirani Thilakawardene made the order after considering a Fundamental Rights petition filed by eight workers of SLRC. more..

Promote Stevia cultivation in Sri Lanka

Mar 2 (LG) The demand for sugar in Sri Lanka is likely to go up steadily in the coming years, in tune with the growth of the economy and percapita income of the country men. To meet this demand for sugar, Sri Lanka has to import its requirement of sugar to considerable extent in future. In the international market, the price of sugar is fluctuating,which appears to be considerably manipulated by the global trading houses and cartels. more..

The challenge from Tamil Diaspora

Mar 2 (LG) The article in the "Sunday Island’ on the 28th of Feb under the caption "the US will not destabilize Sri Lanka", contains the following statement:"Blake started his operations on behalf of the LTTE whilst he was still here; one cannot forget how he sought to rescue the LTTE hierarchy with the use of the America’s Far East Command", had Blake who has been described as a fake rescued Prabhakaran and his cohorts Prabhakaran would today have been either more..

On Milinda Moragoda and his ‘strange’ campaign

Mar 2 (LG) Milinda Moragoda does strange things. I think that’s his edge over a lot of fellow politicians. He obviously has a lot of wealth or a lot of rich backers, but these are times when wealth alone is not enough to get nominated and if nominated get elected. Samson Silva (or was it Fernando?) for example is a perennial also-ran who spends lavishly but never wins. more..

The need to assist victims of propaganda and neglect

Mar 2 (LG) The last Presidential election was relatively peaceful and calm on the day of the election itself, which has led the government to declare it free and fair. However, there were several aspects to that election that could do lasting damage to the country. One was the government’s propaganda campaign that claimed a conspiracy to divide the country. The support that the TNA publicly pledged to Opposition Presidential candidate more..

Lanka still paying for the betrayal of 1815

Mar 2 (AT) March 2, 2010 marks the 195th anniversary of the day when Sinhala chieftains arrogated to themselves an authority which the nation never sanctioned and ceded Sri Lanka to the last of the alien aggressors. On that fateful day in the year 1815, darkness of foreign domination descended on Senkadagala, the last bastion of the Sinhala people. Then as now, foes from without, traitors from within and intrigues from within and without, more..

The Office of the Secretary of Defence

Mar 2 (IL) I take it as my duty as a Patriotic Citizen of Sri Lanka to defend Dr.Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, Secretary of Defence during these turbulent times. What had to be done was done. Justice will prevail. Sri Lanka enjoys freedom today because of Dr.Gotabaya Rajapakse! The Nation was saved, Sri Lanka's territorial integrity and sovereignty was protected by him. more..

Sri Lanka employers should have stronger dialogue with workers: ILO

Mar 2 (LBO) Businesses can ride out economic downturns easier by having stronger relations with their workers through collective bargaining; an approach used countries like in Germany, an International Labour Organization (ILO) official said. "Collective bargaining is essential to the survival of business and employment, so it is very important that dialogue is maintained between the employees and employers," more..

One arm of Sri Lanka government protests UK while another arm consoles

Mar 2 (LP) Sri Lanka government has sent one arm of the ruling coalition to protest the British government while another arm denied the government had any link with the protest. National Freedom Front (JNP), a coalition party of Sri Lanka’s ruling alliance led by President Mahinda Rajapaksa's close ally ex-MP Vimal Weerawansa held a protest demonstration before the British High Commission of Colombo today alleging the former Colonial ruler was aiding and abetting terrorism. more..

Boston Lanka: Weekly News Edition

India, Sri Lanka join hands for turtle conservation project

mar 2 (Hindu) India and Sri-Lanka have joined hands for a collaborative turtle conservation project in northern Indian Ocean. This project has been initiated to understand the complex migration patterns of sea turtles in the Northern Indian Ocean. The Wildlife Institute of India (WII) and Orissa Forest Departments (OFD) are part of this collaborative sea turtle conservation project. more..

Elections Chief orders removal of election posters

mar 2 (Xinhua) Elections Department ordered the removal of all cutouts, banners and posters in connection with the forthcoming parliamentary election to be held on April 8. Elections Chief Dayananda Dissanayaka told reporters that all election materials in public places should be removed by Monday as the nomination period ended on Friday. He said his department will remove all of them with the support of the police if the relevant parties do not remove them by themselves. more..

Police stations in all liberated areas

Mar 2 (GDI) Police stations will be set up in all liberated areas in the North before end of this year to facilitate normal civilian life and civil administration said IGP Mahinda Balasuriya speaking at the opening ceremony the new police station at Pooneryn along the A-32 road on Sunday, 28 Feb. Balasuriya said the new police station was set up under the Government's Uthuru Vasanthaya program more..

SEP stands in Sri Lankan parliamentary election

Mar 2 (wsws) The Socialist Equality Party (SEP) is contesting the parliamentary election on April 8 to mobilise the working class against the deepening assault on living standards and democratic rights. The SEP is fighting for a workers’ and farmers’ government to implement a socialist program to meet the pressing needs of working people, not the profits of the wealthy few. The SEP is standing slates of candidates in four districts— more..

Second Ayurveda Research Hospital now open

Mar 2 (GDI) The second Ayurveda Research Hospital in Sri Lanka has opened under the patronage of the Minister of Indigenous Medicines Tissa Karaliyadda at Siribopura, Hambantota recently. The Ayurveda system of medicine received second-class treatment from successive governments in the past. It was the UPFA regime that focused its attention on the Ayurveda medicine and gave it its due place. This research hospital will be developed in three stages. more..

International Pre-School opens at SLAF Base Hingurakgoda

Mar 2 (GDI) A new Pre-school with modern facilities was declared open by the First Lady Mrs. Shiranthi Rajapaksha yesterday morning at SLAF Base Hingurakgoda. Acting Chief of Defence Staff and Commander of the Air Force Air Chief Marshall Roshan Goonetileke accompanied the chief guest to the pre-school which constructed under patronage of the Base Commander of SLAF Base H’goda Group Captain DK Wanigasuriya and more..

New bus service to Jana Kala Kendraya

Mar 2 (GDI) The National Crafts Council stated in a press release that a new bus service from Borella, to the Jana Kala Kendraya, the national craft centre, Battaramulla started yesterday for the convenience of the craftsmen and the public who come to the centre to purchase handicraft products. The council has built 30 craft cottages under the aegis of the Tourism and Rural Industry and Self Employment Ministries. more..

200 Sathosa outlets before New Year

Mar 2 (GDI) Meeting another pledge in the Mahinda Chinthanaya manifesto, the Ministry of Trade, Marketing Development, Consumer Affairs and Co-operatives has mooted plans to increase the number of Sathosa outlets to 200 before the Sinhala and Hindu New Year festival to offer essential consumer items at reasonable prices, the Minister of Trade, Marketing Development, Consumer Affairs and Co-operatives Bandula Gunawardena said. more..

Ranjan Wijeratne remembered today

Mar 2 (GDI) A commemorative ceremony to mark the 19th death anniversary of the late General Ranjan Wijeratne was held this morning at the Ranjan Wijeratne staute at Police Park on Havelock Road. In February 1989, he was appointed Foreign Minister and Minister of State for Defense by the newly elected President, Ranasinghe Premadasa. In 1990, his last year in office, he held the portfolio of Minister of Plantation Industries while more..

Army expedites de-mining process in North

Mar 2 (LP) Sri Lanka Army has expedited the mine clearing operations along the A-9 Road from Paranthan to Elephant Pass and to Muhamalai to accelerate the IDP resettlement. Around 1,000 army de-mining troops have already cleared approximately 200sq km in the Jaffna, Killinochchi, Mullaitivu and Mannar districts. The Sri Lanka Army said its de-miners are also active in the north of Thunukkai, Manthivu, Oddusudan and Kokkavil. more..

Would be teachers steal question papers

Mar 2 (LT) The Department of Examinations decided yesterday to cancel the final examination of Colleges of Education due to the theft of question papers of the examination. Incidents of question papers thefts were reported from Education colleges of Polgolla and Uva. 33 students who stole the examination papers have been arrested by the police. All 33 students arrested are from Uva College of Education. more..

'I feel like putting the noose around my neck for what atrocities this government is committing on us for saving the country'

Mar 2 (LT) "We dedicated ourselves for the freedom of the country and to save the people from atrocities of the tiger terrorism. But now I feel like putting the noose around my neck for what atrocities this government is committing on us," said Brigadier Duminda Keppetipola who is held in custody on charges of conspiring to overthrow the Govt. more..

Attempt to sabotage General's 'distribution of leaflets' campaign

Mar 2 (LT) Very reliable sources reveal that an attempt by the government is being carried out to sabotage the process of distributing leaflets which is one of the programmes of Gen. Sarath Fonseka's election campaign. Personnel from the police and the Army have been deployed for the sabotaging operation and already police officers favourable to the government have been made aware of the operation. more..

Pooneryn new police station opened

Mar 2 (MoD) Pooneryn lying on A 32 causeway that links with Jaffna peninsula starting from the northwest of Mannar receives resurrection as more and more state administrative apparatuses were taking root in the area. Pooneryn, formerly a notorious LTTE stronghold, from where even artillery was fired fell into Army hands as the troops rolled on towards northward from Mannar. more..

China donates more De-mining equipment to Army engineers

Mar 2 (MoD) Army Engineers, prime movers engaged in the arduous task of removing LTTE laid minefields since beginning of De-mining projects received further teeth when China during a brief ceremony Monday morning donated a stock of 50 De-mining Detectors and 50 De-mining Protective Equipment for the use of Army De-miners, now conducting humanitarian de-mining operations in the North. more..

Air Force celebrates its 59th anniversary

Mar 2 (MoD) Air Force Celebrates its 59th Anniversary The Sri Lanka Air Force proudly celebrated her 59th Anniversary today. The main function was held at Air Force Head Quarters, Colombo with the participation of Acting Chief of Defence Staff and Commander of the Air Force Air Chief Marshall Roshan Goonetileke, Board of Directors, Officers and other ranks. The Air Force day was celebrated at each Air Base, Station and Unit Island wide. more..

Government urges stoppage of mechanical gem drilling

Mar 2 (LP) The illicit gem mining is a common practice in the Gem lands of Sri Lanka particularly in Rathnapura , Kahawattha, Ehaliyagoda and Moragahakanda area. Speaking to Lankapuvath DIG of Sabaragamuwa Premasiri Vitharana said that, rightly speaking, there are Government Authorities and Boards that are responsible for certain activities. The Gem Authority is one and so are the Excise Department and the Narcotic Bureau. more..

Sand miners defy the law

Mar 2 (Island) Despite strict laws, illegal sand miners are continuing to carry on with their activities undeterred. A classic example is the sand mining activity taking place between the two bridges, the old and new, in Peliyagoda. The Island investigations revealed that sand mining had been taking place for the last two days. When contacted, Geological Survey and Mines Bureau Acting Director General more..