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Terrorism risk index 2011: Sri Lanka safer than UK

Aug 5 (AD) Britain is now at greater risk from terrorist attacks than Sri Lanka, according to research. The heightened threat in Northern Ireland has resulted in the UK being ranked higher than the US, France, Spain, China and Sri Lanka in the Terrorism Risk Index compiled by UK analysts Maplecroft. The index, setting out which countries are considered most likely to suffer an attack, was topped by Somalia, followed by Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan and the new nation of South Sudan, more..

CPC on petrol issue

Aug 5 (DM) The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation today quashed recent speculation that the current petrol sold in filling stations is contaminated with substandard petrol. A CPC source told the Daily Mirror that petrol is being thoroughly tested and that the CPC has not sold any substandard petrol to filling stations since the substandard petrol controversy fuelled in June. “We are collecting random samples from filling stations on a regular basis for testing purposes. more..

Sri Lanka Malaysia venture to link East Asia

Aug 5 (LBO) Malaysia's CIMB financial group has formed a joint venture in Sri Lanka to target investors in East Asia as the island's growth picks up after a 30-year war and opportunities come up in areas including infrastructure, officials said. CIMB Holding group will hold 51 percent of the Sri Lanka venture which has an initial investment commitment of two million dollars. "CIMB is impressed with the future for Sri Lanka," CIMB group chief executive Nazir Razak said. more..

100,000 bags of cement to arrive from Pakistan on Monday

Aug 5 (AD) The first stock of 100,000 imported cement bags from Pakistan will reach Sri Lanka by Monday (8), Minister of Cooperatives and Internal Trade, Johnston Fernando stated. Each bag will weigh 50Kg while the Minister stated that steps are being taken to import more cement and other building materials in order to ensure that no shortage of cement occurs in the domestic market. He also demanded that all businessmen immediately release whatever stocks of cement they have hidden away into the market more..

Ethical fashion designers from Sri Lanka launch into Europe

Aug 5 (F2F) Sponsored by M&S, MAS Holdings, SLDF and Reclaimed-To-Wear, Sri Lankan eco fashion designers Charini Suriyage and Kanchana Talpawila, winners of the Sri Lanka Design Festival Ethical Fashion Designer Award 2010, launch their sustainable collections for the first time in London this autumn. Lingerie brand Charini and ready-to-wear women’s brand K T Brown, as part of the award prize, worked alongside ethical fashion and business experts from more..

Fighting LTTE International; harder during peace than war

Aug 5 (DM) The death of Prabhakaran only removed the LTTE’s military strength from Sri Lankan soil. Separatism was only one element of a larger network of illegal dealings and an international agenda of de-stability. The fact that the LTTE; behind the façade of seeking a Tamil nation ran a multi-million dollar business of drugs, arms, shipping and human smuggling etc, can not be removed from the equation when the govt seeks to fight the ‘remnants’ of the LTTE. more..

A Resilient Society: Key to Economic Success

Aug 5 (DM) Recently a top IMF economist speaking at a forum suggested that Sri Lanka should look to promote exports as some East Asian tigers have done so well to ensure sustained economic growth. The success of many of the economies in East Asia in achieving rapid and equitable growth have occupied many of our political leaders since the study of developing economies began in earnest, in the hope of identifying a development model for Sri Lanka that would reflect the more..

A new lease of life for cashew industry

Aug 5 (SO) Cashew nut has developed a distinct identity in the world as a snack food even in comparison with other competing tree nuts such as, almonds, pistachio and walnuts. Its rich food value in terms of protein, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins are acceptable not only to consumers, but also to medical and food scientist. Cashew (Anacardiumoccidentale) was introduced from Brazil to Sri Lanka by early Portuguese settlers in the 16th century and more..

Channel four and the ‘Broken Palmyrah’

Aug 5 (LG) The mass hysteria aroused by Channel Four among foreigners ill disposed towards Sri Lanka and even some treacherous Sri Lankans who are ill disposed towards Mahinda Rajapakse, and care not whom else they hurt (including their Motherland) provided they manage to hurt one or more Rajapaksas, shows no signs of abating. Channel Four has now put out a second video clip supposedly depicting some further alleged information about the alleged conduct of our forces in the last days of more..

Media owner threatened, Editor severely assaulted, correspondents harassed!

Aug 5 (LG) Already battered Freedom of expression and media rights took yet another ugly turn last month in Sri Lanka. A leading news paper owner was threatened by the President, the news editor of the largest circulating Tamil daily in Jaffna was assaulted and critically injured by the military backed para military gang and two correspondents of popular TV news channel was harassed by supports of a notoriously anti media Minister. more..

The way forward to achieve long lasting ethnic reconciliation

Aug 5 (TC) This is the text of the Deshamanya Professor Nandadasa Kodagoda 14th Memorial Oration delivered on August 2nd 2011 by Presidents counsel and MP Mr.Wijedasa Rajapakse at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute,Colombo. The Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the Nandadasa Kodagoda Memorial Trust Madam Ratna Kodagoda, The Chairman of the Board of Management of the Nandadasa Kodagoda Memorial Trust Prof. Colvin Goonaratna, more..

Continuing impunity highlights need for checks and balances

Aug 5 (LG) Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella recently announced that the govt plans to remove Emergency laws by the end of this year. For most of the past four decades, the country has been ruled under Emergency laws, which give the security forces extraordinary powers over citizens and put them in a position of vulnerability in any interaction. The concession being made to democracy may be due to international pressure that continues to mount on the govt on account of its more..

Sangakkara and the World Revolution

Aug 5 (LG) What was the reason for the standing ovation? Sangakkara’s was certainly a consummate performance, having behind it an ability to marshal a wide range of facts in an orderly way, to deploy arguments at a high intellectual level, and to present his case in a way that showed a command of English prose that was well above average. All that was admirable, calling forth high praise for mental prowess. But why the deep emotion that was clearly there behind the standing ovation? more..

TNA suspends talks with Govt and sets conditional 2 week deadline for resumption

Aug 5 (TC) The TNA and the Govt commenced talks in January 2011 consequent to the re-election of President Rajapakse for a second term in office and consequent to the Govt acquiring a two thirds majority in Parliament, recognizing that the Tamil people of the North and East had elected the TNA as their credible representatives. 10 rounds of talks were held from 10th January 2011 on the evolution of an acceptable political solution and more..

Non –Tamil identity of Muslims- 2

Aug 5 (LG) In pre-independence years, as Dharmadasa shows, ‘ethnicity seemed to provide the strongest and most reliable base for political action’ for Sri Lankan nationalists. Accordingly in 1934 the All Ceylon Moors Association was formed, followed by the Sinhalese Maha Sabha in 1935, the Burgher Political Association in 1938, and the Ceylon Indian Congress in 1939.52 In this milieu, language and religion became prime symbols of identity. Tamils, too, particularly the more..

An innocent child was illegally arrested, tortured and produced before court with fabricated charges

Aug 5 (LG) Ms. N. Agnes Malini of No:18, Gala Landa, Manikhinna in the district of Kandy is a widow and the mother of a 17-year-old boy named T. Yoganathan. Yoganathan was illegally arrested and severely tortured by police officers attached to the Manikhinna Police Station on 8 December 2010. Yoganathan lost his father in his early childhood and started work to help support the two of them. He was employed at a hotel in Polonnaruwa but left the place due to the cruelty he more..

After TNA demarche the govt will appoint parliamentary select committee

Aug 5 (TC) Text of a press release issued by Mr.Sajin Vass Gunewardane MP & Secretary of the Committee after suspension of talks with Govt by the TNA. At the meeting which the government delegation had with the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) on Thursday 4th August 2011 the TNA announced that they would not agree to set a date for the next round of talks and that their willingness to continue participation in the discussions would be conditional. more..

Editorial: Jumbos at daggers drawn

Aug 5 (Island) There seems to be no end in sight to the UNP's leadership tussle. A meeting the beleaguered UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe had with UNP Co-Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya, who is under tremendous pressure from the UNP rebels to take over the party leadership, to thrash out a compromise formula, failed on Thursday. With the two leaders at loggerheads, the UNP's problem is likely to get out of hand. The UNP's woes evoke one's memories of the protracted more..

Editorial: Compassion to transform the world

Aug 5 (DM) Every human being wants a perfect world, but we seem to be unable to receive it. Surely since the creation and evolution of human civilization, by now we should have given birth to that great expectation that’s in every human heart. Have we gone wrong somewhere, or is it unattainable? We expect govt and social justice movements to satisfy our aspirations. We educate ourselves and our children in search of that utopian dream. Our eyes search that horizon that more..

Fast bowling crisis not far away, warns coach

Aug 5 (Island) Sri Lanka’s Head Coach Rumesh Ratnayake warned that the country could suffer a crisis in the fast bowling department if remedial measures aren’t taken soon. As Sri Lanka prepared to take on Australia in a series of two T-20s, five ODIs and three Tests, the former fast bowler said he was satisfied with the current crop of fast bowlers, but was worried about the future. "We have a dearth of fast bowling talent. I was speaking to Champaka more..

Samurdhi for three new Northern districts

Aug 5 (DN) The government will soon provide Samurdhi benefits for three new Northern Districts – Kilinochchi, Vavuniya and Mannar and the other liberated areas in the North. “The decision to provide Samurdhi benefits to these Northern areas have been taken by Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa which will give them equal opportunities as the rest of the country. we will proceed with these allocations soon,” Deputy Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena said. more..

Now, ice creams under probe

Aug 5 (DN) Colombo Chief Medical Officer Dr Pradeep Kariyawasam has warned those eating ice cream if they feel a pain in the throat or are affected with any other ailment such as diarrhea after consuming ice cream to inform the Colombo Municipal Council Health Department Dr Kariyawasam said that certain persons have complained of ailments after eating ice cream packed in plastic containers. It is suspected that lids of containers are not tightly fixed, leading to contamination. more..

Dr. Harsha de Silva calls for Govt explanation on high loan interest rates

Aug 5 (FT) UNP MP Dr. Harsha de Silva yesterday called for an explanation from the Government on why Sri Lanka has to pay 6.3% fixed interest when the original amount should have been 1.3% on the Hambantota Port investment. He charged that the Government had not built in relevant clauses to protect the country and that he would continue to probe other deals with the Chinese to see if exorbitant interest rates were charged. more..

Sri Lanka confirm UAE series... again

Aug 5 (ET) Ending days of confusion, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has finally confirmed that it will go ahead with the UAE tour as planned where it will take on Pakistan. SLC’s interim committee puzzled the Pakistan board as well as the Emirates Cricket Board after announcing that they had not confirmed UAE as the venue and were in the process of persuading Pakistan to play in Sri Lanka instead. However, SLC spokesman Brian Thomas confirmed that the series, which will be hosted by more..

Other LG polls in October

Aug 5 (DM) The elections to the remaining 25 local bodies would be conducted in October, 2011, according to the Department of Elections. They include 17 municipal councils, one urban council and seven pradheshiya sabhas. The nominations for the election would be accepted from August 18 to 25, 2011. At the conclusion of the nomination, the day of polling would be announced, a top official said. He said that October 15 and 17 considered as likely dates for this election. more..

JHU and Champika question TNA

Aug 5 (DM) JHU General Secretary and Minister Champika Ranawaka questioned the right the TNA has to take up the issue that number of seats from Jaffna has been reduced as a consensus has not been taken place in Jaffna for a long time and they still have the number of voters which was recorded in 1988. “By looking at the elections results and the number of votes they were able to obtain, they should get around five seats,” he added. more..

Court sends Attorney General a reminder

Aug 5 (DM) The Colombo Fort Magistrate yesterday sent a reminder to the Attorney General to expedite his advice on the case where three persons including two peons attached to the President’s Private Secretary’s Office and a businessman who were allegedly involved in pilfering stationery and computer toners from Temple Trees. When the case was taken up before Magistrate Ms. Lanka Jayaratne, defense counsel moved to release his clients on bail since they had already been in more..

England Lions v Sri Lanka A: Day 3

Aug 5 (CI) A battling tail-end partnership extended Sri Lanka A's lead to 90 in the morning, but a 98-run opening stand and a composed half-century from England Lions opener Joe Root put the hosts 92 runs ahead at stumps on the third day in Scarborough. The Lions lost three wickets before the close - including a skittish Ravi Bopara for a 21-ball 25 - but reached a position of reasonable safety at 182 for 3. Lions seamers Stuart Meaker, James Harris and Jade Dernbach eventually more..

Sri Lanka condemned over aid workers' deaths

Aug 5 (BBC) Human Rights Watch has accused the Sri Lankan govt of lacking the will to prosecute the security forces for the killings of 17 aid workers in 2006. There was widespread revulsion following the murders of the 16 Tamils and one Muslim in the north-eastern town of Muttur during the civil war. European monitors were convinced government troops were responsible, but officials blamed Tamil Tiger rebels. The govt has since ruled out reopening an inquiry into more..

More power to PC-rebels

Aug 5 (DM) The UNP reformists had resolved that the party’s Parliamentary Group should have more powers over the Working Committee in making important decisions such as the appointment of leaders, MP Ranjith Madduma Bandara said. The reformists met for the second time in a day on Wednesday evening at the residence of provincial councillor Maithri Gunaratne. He said that all the participants of the meeting discussed in detail the next course of action to be taken more..

Colombo transfers Admin functions of East Tamil areas to Sinhala districts

Aug 5 (TN) Sri Lanka govt has been implementing a scheme to transfer administrative functions of Tamil districts in Eastern Province to the adjoining Sinhalese districts. As a first step the govt has transferred the financial administration of Batticaloa District Coconut Development Board to Polonnaruwa located in the North Central Province. The government should immediately stop this transfer, said Mr.P. Selvarasa, Batticaloa District TNA MP. more..

Boston Lanka News: Aug. 4, 2011

Kuchchiveli PS Chairman ineligible to hold post?

Aug 5 (DM) A member of the Kuchchiveli Pradeshiya Sabha, A. Mubharak could be considered ineligible to hold office if allegations brought against him is proved to be true. A former Management Assistant of the Kuchchaveli Pradeshiya Sabha Mubharak was elected to the Pradeshiya Sabha at the recently concluded local govt election. However under election law he should have resigned from his post or got a transfer to another institution at least one year prior to the date of nominations. more..

Wildlife Dept. to work closely with NARA

Aug 5 (Island) A national Marine Mammal Act is being drafted with the National Aquatic Resources Agency playing a central role, the new Wild Life Director General revealed yesterday. Wildlife Conservation Department Director General H. D. Ratnayake says the Department had agreed to work closely with the NARA to conserve large mammal species particularly whales, dolphins and dugongs. He told The Island: "We are in continuous dialogue on new regulation guidelines with NARA. more..

KP urges Diaspora to help

Aug 5 (DM) Former chief arms procurer of the LTTE KP yesterday called on the Tamil Diaspora to stop their campaign that provokes anger and hatred. Kumaran Pathmanathan, the former chief arms procurer now heads the North East Rehabilitation and Development Organisation (NERDO). “I think talking about Channel 4 as a means of revenge is absurd. I plead to the Tamil Diaspora to stop their campaign that provokes anger and hatred. They have to know the reality. We must live in peace,” more..

US aid cut to SL “far from resolution”

Aug 5 (DM) The United States Congressional Committee vote to ban aid to Sri Lanka although still under consideration is far from being passed and implemented,” according to the Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the US Jaliya Wickramasuriya. “The proposed cut is under consideration, but far from resolution. In fact, there’s a good chance that the legislation will never be finalised,” he said, from Washington. The Ambassador stressed that this was not a move that targeted Sri Lanka. more..

US Embassy: 'No nuclear help'

Aug 5 (NN) The US Embassy in Colombo says as part of a worldwide program to properly dispose of potentially dangerous radioactive material, the United States approached the Govt of Sri Lanka to offer assistance to remove two radioactive sources no longer in use. The U.S. Embassy and the Govt of Sri Lanka have discussed this technical assistance, but have not reached any agreement. On August 3, the Sri Lankan Cabinet decided to appoint a committee to study the proposal. more..

TNA sets out conditions for continuation of talks

Aug 5 (DM) The TNA said yesterday that they would not agree to set a date for the next round of talks with the govt and that their willingness to continue participation in discussions with the govt would be conditional, UPFA MP Sajin Vas De Gunawardane said in a statement. After a meeting between the TNA delegation and the govt delegation Mr. Gunawardane, who is the Secretary of this Committee, said that the TNA had put forward three conditions and more..

Non-academic staff demand their pound of flesh

Aug 5 (Island) In the wake of government agreeing to increase the salaries of university dons, the non-academic staff of universities, have demanded that anomalies in their salaries be rectified immediately. Hundreds of non-academics staged a protest opposite the University Grants Commission (UGC) in Colombo yesterday demanding immediate rectification of their salary anomalies. The protest led to a major traffic jam at Ward Place, Town Hall and the surrounding roads more..

SL Deputy HC in Chennai ensures safety of pilgrims

Aug 5 (DM) Sri Lankan pilgrims currently visiting South India had requested the Lankan Deputy High Commission in Chennai India to put them up at the Mahabodhi Center following Wednesday's attack on 84 Sri Lankans by a set of goons who were believed to be pro LTTE elements. The Deputy High Commission had earlier placed several Lankan groups on a pilgrimage to South India at Mahabodhi Centre to ensure their safety One of the victims has informed his family members that more..