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'No more murders within state university premises'

June 2 (DM) The government would not allow any freshers to be harmed within any state university premises as a result of ragging. Therefore, parents need not fear for their children who enter state universities. Higher Education Minister S.B. Dissanayake said. The interview: Q: How are you going to save undergraduates and students of other state educational institutions from ragging? more..

IGP made a scapegoat for Katunayake violence – JJ

June 2 (Island) The IGP, Mahinda Balasuriya, has been made a scapegoat for the chaos and violence that was witnessed at the Katunayake EPZ on Monday, when it was President Mahinda Rajapaksa as the Finance Minister who had introduced the unfair Private Sector Pension Scheme Bill, the UNP said. The newly appointed chief of the ‘Jathika Sevaka Sangamaya’, Jayalath Jayawardena MP, said that more..

Lanka rejects European Parliament meet

June 2 (NN) Sri Lanka has rejected a hearing on Sri Lanka held at the European Parliament (EP) yesterday saying it has no official standing and is a mere gimmick to cover up for the loss of face suffered at recent 'urgency' resolution on Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka's Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU Ravinatha Aryasinha said the session titled ‘Sri Lanka Two years after the war: will the perpetrators be brought to justice?’ more..

Sri Lanka military says switched to unorthodox tactics to win war

June 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka's armed forces developed new, unorthodox tactics and techniques to win the war against Tamil Tiger separatists, learning from 30 years of battlefield experience, senior officers said. Field commanders and troops learned to be flexible and sometimes ignored conventional wisdom in the almost three-year military campaign that crushed the Tigers in May 2009, they told an more..

SC rejects petition on leadership training program

June 2 (NN) The Supreme Court (SC) has allowed the University Grants Commission (UGC) to continue with the mandatory leadership training class for university new entrants. When the petition filed against the leadership training given by the military was heard by the Supreme Court today the court rejected the petition and cleared the UGC to continue with the training. However the petitioners, which included student unions, more..

Central bank to restore second historic building

June 3 (LBO) Sri Lanka's central bank which has restored a historic building in Colombo city's old quarter which features colonial era architecture will begin work on a second building that it has bought, a top official said. The central bank officially opened 'Lloyds Building' in Sir Baron Jayetilleke Mawatha in Colombo's Fort area which was built in 1908, after buying it from private owners in 2009. The central bank has also bought another building in the vicinity which was earlier owned by more..

Strauss promises no let-up in Lanka Test

June 3 (AFP) England captain Andrew Strauss has vowed his side "will push on" as they look to build on their stunning series-opening win against Sri Lanka when the second Test starts at Lord's on Friday. Strauss's men dismissed the tourists for just 82 inside 25 overs to win a rain-marred first Test by an innings and 14 runs in Cardiff on Monday. Victory at Lord's, the Middlesex opening batsman's home ground, will give England an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the three-match series. more..

Sri Lanka army chief says execution video doctored

June 3 (AP) Sri Lanka's army chief has dismissed as "doctored" a video clip that shows soldiers shooting bound, blindfolded prisoners and abusing corpses in the final days of the country's 26-year civil war. A U.N. expert, Christof Heyns, reviewed the 5-minute, 25-second video and announced this week that the video contains enough evidence to open a war crimes case, but asked Sri Lanka to investigate the incident first. more..

Silence on Sri Lanka screams of duplicity

June 3 (SMH) This week Sri Lanka celebrated the second anniversary of the end of its 26-year civil war by holding an international 'defeating terrorism' conference. It is a kind of brag-fest, to talk about the lessons learnt in its brutal victory over the insurgent group, the LTTE. There's one aspect, however, of the protracted battle that the Sri Lankan government does not like to talk about, how in the final stages - a United Nations 'panel of experts' says more..

'No clarity on Sri Lankan civilian casualties'

June 3 (Hindu) Two years after the defeat of the LTTE, Sri Lanka says it is yet to figure out how many civilians died during the battle. Addressing members of the defence forces from 41 countries at a seminar, “Defeating terrorism — the Sri Lankan experience”, which concluded here on Thursday, an expert put the number of civilian deaths at 1,400 — a claim which was quickly dismissed by Sri Lankan Army Commander Jagath Jayasuriya as the academic's “personal opinion”. more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 02.06.2011

Sri Lanka to meet deficit target on faster growth, Minister says

June 3 (BN) Sri Lanka will meet its budget- deficit target as economic growth boosts revenue, according to Minister Sarath Amunugama. The end of a 26-year civil war in May 2009 has boosted consumer demand and investment in the island nation, which aims to cut its budget deficit to 6.8 percent of gross domestic product from 8 percent last year. It will meet the target without cutting social spending thanks to an economy which expanded by 8.6 percent in the fourth quarter, more..

Sri Lankans protest over killing of co-worker

June 3 (BBC) Thousands of Sri Lankan factory workers have demonstrated against the killing of a co-worker during violent clashes with police earlier this week. The workers, mostly women, chanted slogans against the police and President Rajapaksa opposite the entrance to the international airport. They waved a large white cloth flag to symbolise the death of Roshen Chanaka. Eyewitnesses say that the 22-year old man was shot dead in clashes between demonstrators more..

Sri Lanka offers to probe 'specific' war crime claims

June 3 (AFP) Sri Lanka's top military commander offered on Thursday to probe "specific allegations" of war crimes during the country's fight against Tamil Tiger separatists that ended two years ago. Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya said no civilians were killed by his forces, but he was open to investigating alleged rights abuses in the final stages of fighting. "I am prepared to investigate allegations, specific allegations," more..

Sri Lanka : Anti-Conversion Law

June 3 (LG) Among the many noises made in the post-war Sri Lanka one that is often neglected is the freedom to express one's faith as they wish within a pluralistic context. The anti-Conversion law in Sri Lanka has proven to be ever increasingly a quite worrying measure as the majority population begin to take this law into their own hands and act unthinkingly with gruesome violence. This has also sadly, it must be stressed played into the hands of the ultra-nationalist politico monks in the island. more..

And Civil Society (real) floors Civil Society (imagined)

June 3 (DM) NGOs are made of workshops, seminars, project proposals, reports, double-billing and overheads that make up more than two thirds of annual budgets. They are also made of claims, chief among which is that of representational lie. ‘We are civil society,’ NGO personnel like to think and state. They are an incestuous bunch, these NGOs. They form consortiums and forums which are made of the same groups and led by the same people. They appoint each other to each other’s boards. more..

'Moon report breached UN Charter'

June 3 (SO) One of Sri Lanka's top legal experts claimed that United Nations Secretary General, Ban ki-Moon has violated the UN Charter by appointing non-UN staffers to advise him on the alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka during the final phase of the end battle against the LTTE terrorism. UNP MP and President's Counsel Wijeyadasa Rajapaksha in an interview with the Sunday Observer said by appointing a panel and publishing a purported report adverse to more..

Mahinda woos Jayalalithaa

June 3 (DM) A pro Tamil Tiger website described the victory of Jayalalithaa at the recent elections as ‘mummy returns.’ Velupillai Prabhakaran and Tamil Tigers too recognized Indira Gandhi in the same way as a ‘mother’ at that time. They said, Indira Gandhi was the ‘mother’ of their Eelam struggle, for it was people like Indira Gandhi who supported the Eelam struggle. During that period, Jayalalithaa’s partner MGR, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister helped Prabhakaran and Tamil Tigers. more..

CEB Engineers’ Union hampers fight against corruption

June 3 (DM) Q: What is your plan of work as the chairman of the Industrial Development Board? A: It has been one year since I assumed duties as the chairman of the Board. During this period, I spent my time in restoring the organizational structure of it. I corrected various structures such as administration, accounting, financial management and auditing. By the time, I took over, six out of the 12 director posts remained. There was no corporate plan. I have now more..

'Conflict resolution theory expired in May 2009'

June 3 (SO) Extracts from an exclusive interview with the Treasurer of the SLFP and Skills Development and Youth Affairs Minister Dullas Alahapperuma on the historical background of anti Sri Lankan elements and the Darusman Report. Q: What is the historical background to the Darusman Report? A: The Darusman Report was not initiated by the UN or its Secretary General. They are not against Sri Lanka and Sri Lanka has nothing against them. more..

European MPs castigate Ban Ki-Moon's mock panel

June 3 (DM) It appears that the EU Parliament has now become wiser and realized what frauds the LTTE Diaspora are. Quoting the CDN, “the European parliament on 13th May 2011 defeated an attempt to seek the immediate establishment of an international justice mechanism on Sri Lanka during an urgent debate called by the Socialist Green Parties at the Strasbourg Plenary Sessions, to draw attention to the so called UN Panel report, on accountability issues in Sri Lanka. more..

The new Private Sector Pension Bill

June 3 (SL) Having sparked widespread fear and paranoia, the new Private Sector Pension Bill, sits ominously, waiting to be passed. The Sunday Leader set out to have a look at what exactly the Bill entails and how it is set to affect Sri Lanka’s working population. First off, it is important to make clear that the Employee Benefit Pension Fund (EBPF) will not, in fact, threaten the current EPF (Employees’ Provident Fund)/ETF (Employees’ Trust Fund) structure of payments. more..

MIT scientist with a passion for Sri Lankan Music

June 3 (UL) “I’ve got this opportunity; I’m living in a Western country where there is great interest in arts and culture. During 2006-07 the media here was mainly focusing Sri Lanka on the ethnic crisis. I wanted to show that Sri Lanka is not only defined by those problems but rather, other things such as art and music as well.” As Dr. Arjuna Balasuriya a senior research scientist at MIT continues to break boundaries in science he also adopts the more..

Editorial : The Katunayake Tragedy

June 3 (Island) The tragic death of a young Export Processing Zone (EPZ) worker after being shot by the police in Katunayake on Monday has doubtlessly diminished all of us beyond measure. It could have been avoided if the parties to the dispute, which sparked Monday's violent clash, had acted with restraint. Intoxicated with power, the govt blundered by trying to railroad trade unions into submission and deploying the armed police to quell workers' unrest, more..

Editorial : Seeking the spirit of truth

June 3 (DM) The earth is evolving towards a higher purpose and we are called to be custodians in this plan. We are responsible for its well being, development and sustenance. We are thus called to protect the ecosystems and pursue the protection of nature, for our own survival and well being. The general mass of humanity are not aware of all this. Flowing from this, the Spirit of Truth yearns to see harmonious relationships in family, society and between the nations of the earth. more..

Tamil Nadu film director Seeman will marry a Sri Lankan Tamil woman soon

June 3 (DBS) Tamil film director & leader of “We Tamil movement” Sebastian Simon now known as “Senthamilan Seeman” will marry a sri Lankan Tamil woman soon. Seeman’s bride to be is the widow of LTTE leader Muthukumaru Soundarakrishnan/Lt.Col Anbumani killed on November 2nd 2007 at Kilinochchi. Lt.Col Anbumani a.k.a Alex was a skilled photographer & was a senior deputy to former LTTE political commissar Suppiah Paramu Thamilselvan. more..

Arriving at hasty conclusions about a blemishless Army

June 3 (TC) At the end of the one-hour speech by defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, his audience, military officers from Lanka and few other countries, stood up and clapped. Rajapaksa had spoken non-stop on how the Tamil Tigers — “stubborn, ruthless, fascist, formidable’’ — had used and killed civilians. At the end of the one-hour speech by defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, his audience, military officers from Lanka and few other countries, stood up and clapped. more..

Pornography: Fast growing illegal business in the Pettah

June 3 (SO) Pettah which is located between Colombo Central and the Colombo North had been a commercial hub from the time of Dutch occupation on the country. Produce such as cinnamon, pepper and cardamoms were brought into Pettah to be stored before it was shipped across to cities in Europe in the bygone era. The Dutch even built an extensive network of canals leading to Fort to facilitate the transport of produce. That was the picture several centuries ago. more..

Winning the war: Sri Lankan Experience – 2

June 3 (LG) 8. The war was won mainly due to the strong command of the Commander at that time and the concept, tactics and training introduced by him in addition to his ability to identify and detail the correct people for the job, due to his very vast experience in offensive operations over a long time at various ranks. Commander not only selected the correct field commanders but also efficient staff officers who formed the backbone of his war machinery. more..

Premachandran says KP failed to identify Tamils’ needs

June 3 (SL) The TNA stresses that the Tamil people of Sri Lanka have chosen their party to lead them into finding a political solution. TNA MP Suresh Premachandran lashed out at a recent interview former LTTE arms procurer Shanmugam Kumaran Tharmalingam, alias KP, gave FirstPost an Indian news website. KP stated that one of the main reasons past political dialogues between governments and Tamil groups failed is because the leaderships have not been flexible. more..

Pension Bill lessons

June 3 (FT) MISTAKES are also lessons for the future. The Govt has stated that even though this Pension Bill for the private sector has been withdrawn, its goal will be achieved through another format. This means that a future Pension Bill is a very real expectation and therefore it would be best to view what the Govt can do differently to prevent the present circumstances from repeating. Minister Keheliya Rambukwella admitted that the Govt did not create enough awareness of more..

The Global Context of Counter-terrorism

June 3 (GV) Defense Secretary Rajapaksa, Professor Peiris, General Jayasuriya, distinguished officials, officers, and delegations: Good morning. Thank you for organizing this important conference, and for your kind invitation to talk frankly with you about Sri Lanka’s experience in Eelam War IV. As I said when I accepted the invitation to attend, I believe your defeat of LTTE is a remarkable achievement that deserves to be studied. more..

Sacred Buddhist Relics Arriving from Pakistan

June 3 (Island) In order to present the richest Buddhist historical legacy of Pakistan to the Sri Lankan public, the government of Pakistan is sending most sacred relics of the Lord Buddha to Sri Lanka. These relics will be arriving in Sri Lanka today evening for a limited period and will be exhibited at Colombo Museum during the month of June 2011. After the conclusion of the exhibition these relics will be taken back to Pakistan. Dr. Paul Bhatti, Advisor to more..

Priest condemns attack on workers

June 3 (UCAN) A priest in charge of Christian workers has unequivocally condemned violence “generated by the police” in clashes on Monday that injured many people in clashes between police and Free Trade Zone workers from garment factories who were protesting against a private sector pension bill. “The violence generated by the police has to be condemned totally. Some law enforcing officers behaved in a very unbecoming manner — kicking workers and dragging them along the road,” more..


June 3 (SL) Driving through Colombo, one would certainly notice little pet shops lining the streets with their colourful cages, home to squawking birds and cute little puppies. Snowy rabbits and pigeons, parrots and little budgerigars can be seen looking out from behind bars, capturing one’s attention. Contrary to external appearances however, the reality is far from colourful. When The Sunday Leader visited several pet shops around town, more..

Jaffna parish starts renewal campaign

June 3 (UCAN) A parish in Jaffna is undertaking a renewal program to increase church attendance. A group of priests, nuns, and counselors from St James Church in Kurunagar are hoping to make people aware of the need for coming to church. The program which consists of visiting homes and listening to families and their problems, is being held from May 8 to June 24. The team consists of 10 – five of them Oblate priests – who are also holding group meetings with a variety of more..

Call for transparency intensifies

June 3 (Island) The death of Roshen Chanaka, one of the protestors of the proposed Private Sector Pension (PSP) scheme, who succumbed to injuries after being shot when protesting workers of the Free Trade Zone clashed with police earlier this week is a wake up call to the island economy, just out of a thirty year conflict where brutal terrorism was destroyed, that transparency, good governance and the right to be objectively critical of those in power would be more..

Court order on funeral as Roshan Chamika's body is brought home

June 3 (NF) The Minuwangoda Magistrate's Court made an order regarding the funeral of Roshan Chanaka who succumbed to his injuries after being admitted to the Ragama Teaching Hospital with severe wounds following Monday's clash that erupted at the Katunayake Free Trade Zone (FTZ). Minuwangoda Magistrate K.K.A.G. Swarnadipathi ordered that the victim's family members should be offered an opportunity to conduct his funeral in private. more..

Ex-IGP to make statement on June 17

June 3 (Island) Former IGP Mahinda Balasuriya is to make a special statement at the Police Headquarters on June 17. He tendered his resignation after Monday’s violent incidents involving the Police and the workers of the Katunayake Export Processing Zone, who staged a protest against the Private Sector Pensions Scheme (PSPS). Senior DIG N. K. Illangakoon will succeed Balasuriya. One protester died due to gunshot injuries and between 40 and 50 other garment factory employees were injured. more..

Academics may quit local system

June 3 (DM) Disappointed by the unkept promises of the government, a large number of academics are now contemplating on leaving the local higher education system, the Federation of University Teachers Association (FUTA) said. FUTA Spokesman Dr. Mahim Mendis said that as a result of the government’s failure to grant a substantial pay hike for the academics, a large number of academics have now decided to leave the higher education system and go for more lucrative opportunities. more..