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Editorial: At least now let's work for unity in diversity

Mar 2 (DM) History and nature clearly show that lasting peace and sustainable development in a country could be built only if there is multi religious, multi racial and multi cultural unity in diversity – instead of uniformity. If examples are needed the human body itself is one. How monstrous would it be if the whole body was one big eye or mouth? Instead we have different parts of the body with different roles and responsibilities for all including the toe nails, more..

Sri Lanka shares end down 0.2-pct

Mar 2 (LBO) Sri Lankan shares closed weaker Friday in somewhat choppy trade with turnover falling to low levels, brokers said. The main All Share Price Index closed down 0.17 percent at 5,460.19, while the more liquid Milanka index fell 0.38 percent to close at 4,745.19. Turnover fell to 403 million rupees. Index heavyweight John Keells Holdings closed at 178.30 rupees, up 40 cents while Commercial Bank closed at 100 rupees, up 20 cents. more..

Army to scale down presence in North & East

Mar 2 (Xinhua) The army has decided to scale down its presence in the north and east of the country, two areas which were once the battle zone in the war between the military and Tamil Tiger rebels. Sri Lankan army commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya said that the army is now completely ready for far-reaching reforms in its structural composition vis-a-vis ground realities, security and assisting in development projects. more..

32 abductions in past 5 months

Mar 2 (SM) Thirty two people were abducted by armed groups in the past five months, ‘Ravaya’ reports. Of these abducted persons, the dead bodies of seven were found in Colombo and several other areas. Five others were freed subsequently. In addition, three persons are still reported as missing. Most of these kidnappings had been committed by armed men who had come in white vans. Among the abducted persons are social activists, businessmen, persons police describe as underworld more..

Sri Lanka trims bank forex trading positions

Mar 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka has trimmed the level of foreign exchange banks can keep overnight for trading to around a third of an earlier level, a day after curbs was placed in the forward market. The rupee gained to 119.00/120.00 against the greenback in the spot dollar market from around 122 levels a day earlier as banks sold down their net open positions to comply with the new rules in early trade Friday. The trimming of open positions comes a day after forward deals were more..

Daily Mirror Cartoon

School Associations for conservation of Electricity

Mar 2 (GDI) A programme of forming School Associations aimed at promoting conservation of electricity was launched on Thursday at the BMICH. These Associations are being formed by the Sustainable Energy Authority in coordination with the Ministry of Education. Representatives from 96 schools from all the districts in the country participated at this function and they were provided financial and other assistance in establishing these associations in their respective areas. more..

New committee to free SF

Mar 2 (DM) A new committee has been appointed to run the ‘Movement to Free General Sarath Fonseka’, following complaints about mismanagement of funds of the movement by the previous office bearers, officials said. Addressing a media conference newly appointed Joint convener of the Movement MP Arjuna Ranatunga told media today that “there were complaints against the previous office bearers of the movement, especially regarding the handling of finances.” more..

Sri Lanka in finals after nine-run win

Mar 2 (CI) Sri Lanka entered this match with their fate in their own hands. It turns out they are pretty safe hands. Not even a hat-trick from Daniel Christian, a 4-wicket comeback from James Pattinson, a captain's half-century from Shane Watson or a remarkable late fighting fifty from David Hussey could prevent Sri Lanka from winning the last qualifying match at the MCG. Lasith Malinga led a strong bowling performance to complete more..

buddhika Pathirana cleared of all charges

Mar 2 (CT) The UNP Disciplinary Committee has informed MP Buddhika Pathirana that it would recommend the party’s Working Committee to restore his party membership. He was summoned before the Disciplinary Committee of the Party Thursday evening. During the inquiry, Pathirana has stated that he has not violated party discipline by supporting an independent group during the local government election period. He said false allegations were levelled against him, as a result of more..

Malnutrition among Sri Lanka's urban children growing: UNICEF

Mar 2 (Xinhua) Malnutrition in Sri Lankan children living in cities have grown over the past decade, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) head said here on Friday urging the government to take action. Speaking at the launch of the State of the World's Children Report 2012 UNICEF Sri Lanka Representative Reza Hossaini quoting government data pointed out that urban population within the country was expected to grow by 2.1 percent each year. more..

US forces in five South Asian nations including Sri Lanka

Mar 2 (PTI) US Special forces teams are currently stationed in five South Asian countries including India as part of the counter-terrorism co-operation with these nations, a top Pentagon commander has disclosed. These teams have been deployed by US Pacific Command as part of its effort to enhance their counter-terrorism capabilities, in particular in the maritime domain, Admiral Robert Willard, the PACOM Commander said more..

Hotel killing suspect referred to Psychiatrist

Mar 2 (DM) The Colombo Fort Magistrate today called for a psychiatric report regarding the suspect Sinnathurai Gnana Chandran who was arrested over the killing of his 49-year-old wife in a room of a star-class hotel in Kollupitiya last week. The magistrate called for the report after the police informed Court that the suspect might be suffering from a mental illness. The postmortem examination said the probable medical cause of death was due to a stab injury to the chest. more..

The flying bat and the baffling fine

Mar 2 (CI) The run-out that wasn't: The throw came in, the wicketkeeper whipped the bails off, the umpire raised his finger and Dinesh Chandimal began to walk off the field. But there was more to what looked like a straightforward run-out than first met the eye. Lahiru Thirimanne's cut was collected at deep point by Ben Hilfenhaus, who slid and relayed the ball to David Warner, who in turn sent it on to Matthew Wade to catch Chandimal short. more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 02.03.2012

Pillay tells UNHRC to address Lanka

Mar 2 (SL) UN Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay says she hopes the UNHRC will address reports on Sri Lanka. Addressing the council a short while ago, Pillay welcomed the release of the LLRC but added that it falls short of addressing issues mention in the UN Experts panel report. Pillay said that the LLRC report contained several important recommendations and she hopes the government will engage with her office in implementing the recommendations. more..

Sri Lanka call up Kapugedera as replacement

Mar 2 (NDTV) Chamara Kapugedera, the middle-order batsman, has been named as a replacement for one of the three injured allrounders in the Sri Lanka squad that qualified for the finals of the Commonwealth Bank tri-series. Which of the injured players - Farveez Maharoof, Angleo Mathews and Thisara Perara - is being replaced, has not yet been decided. Sri Lanka will play Australia in the best-of-three final from Sunday, in Brisbane. more..

Time is slipping away for SL :US

Mar 2 (DM) US Under Secretary of State Maria Otero told the UNHRC session in Geneva today, that the international community has waited nearly three years for action by Sri Lanka and ‘time is slipping away’ for them. “We know from experience that there can be no lasting peace without reconciliation and accountability, but the United States is concerned that, in Sri Lanka, time is slipping away. The international community has waited nearly three years more..

Kiriella and Former Chief Justice debate over Rome Statute

Mar 2 (NF) A debate has arisen with regard to Sri Lanka not being a signatory to the Rome Statute. The UNP claims that as Ranil Wickremesinghe did not sign the statute, no one from Sri Lanka can be produced before international military tribunals. However, retired Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva said that it is only the head of state who has the authority to sign such a statute. "I respect the former Chief Justice, he is my friend. But I need to remind him that a more..

High-ranking police officers transferred

Mar 2 (NF) 58 high-ranking police officers have been transferred with immediate effect. Police Headquarters issuing a communique said three senior DIGs, 35 DIGs, 12 Senior Superintendents of Police and eight Superintendents of Police have been transferred. Accordingly, new DIGs have been appointed to the CID and Crime Reporting Division, Special Security Range, State Intelligence and Terrorism Investigation Division, President's Security Division, Walana more..

Revisiting Sri Lanka's Bloody War

Mar 2 (NYT) Even as attention is riveted on the bloodshed in Syria, another conflict, far more deadly, is belatedly attracting the notice it deserves. Beginning this week, the UNHRC in Geneva has returned to an issue that has haunted it since 2009 — the bloody finish to Sri Lanka’s civil war. That conflict ended on a stretch of beach in the country’s northeast, as the remaining fighters of the Tamil Tigers and tens of thousands of traumatized civilians were more..

Dayasiri summoned for inquiry

Mar 2 (DM) UNP MP Dayasiri Jayasekara and Ashoka Abeysinghe have been informed to be present at a disciplinary inquiry on March 9 by the UNPs legal secretary. The disciplinary inquiry has been initiated due to statements made to the media by the two members in the past. Speaking to the Daily Mirror online MP Dayasiri Jayasekara confirmed that he had heard about the initiation of an inquiry. “The proper procedure was not followed, the normal practice is more..

Tense situation at UNP rally in Panadura

Mar 2 (NF) A tense situation arose during a demonstration organised by the UNP in Panadura yesterday afternoon. The demonstration was held last afternoon to protest against the rising cost of living as well as the fuel prices. The volatile situation arose after party leader Ranil Wickremesinghe addressed the demonstrators. A number of opposition parties took part in the protest rally which was organised by the UNP. The protest was held near the clock tower located in the more..

Sri Lanka hopeful of beating injury woes

Mar 2 (CI) Mahela Jayawardene is hopeful that Angelo Mathews and Farveez Maharoof will be fit for Sunday's first final against Australia, but Thisara Perera's chances of playing are less certain. Sri Lanka qualified for the best-of-three finals series thanks to their nine-run win over Australia at the MCG, a victory that was all the more impressive because they lost both Perera and Mathews during Australia's chase. more..

Have to be ‘everybody the same’

Mar 3 (NS) The Southern Expressway Bus is empty these days, so I’ve been taking it. Ended up in Hikkaduwa at a restaurant with a photo of Mahinda on the wall. The owner was railing against the govt. “After two years, the govt will be changing,’ he said. I almost laughed. The owner firmed his face and said, “Not think so. Going to happen.” “Nothing to do with the President and his family. It’s the small (people)” he went on. Refering to the local catchers and thugs. more..

‘Mallikai’ - nearing fifty

Mar 3 (NS) Lankan Thamil Literature and the cultural activities of the people living in the country who speak in Thamil can be understood in many ways. Thamil, which is one of the oldest living languages in the world, is spoken by Thamilians and Muslims in the country. It is estimated that nearly 70 million people speak it, particularly in Sri Lanka, Tamilnadu and other regions in India, Singapore, Malaysia, a few European nations, and North America. more..

Children-friendly police units to be set up

Mar 3 (SO) Let's call her Pumalee. Though the teenage beauty was the apple of her mother's eye, the mother couldn't protect her daughter from a 'predator' who was eyeing for her for several months. On one fateful day, when she was alone at home, after returning from school, she had fallen prey to the unknown labourer who came to work at the new construction site in the town. Raped and assaulted, screams of the innocent girl didn't reach beyond the four walls of her home. more..

Crass capitulation and craven opportunism of Victor Ivan

Mar 3 (CT) On the 28th Feb 2012, the RAVAYA newspaper celebrated its 25th Anniversary with great pomp and pageantry- and expense. The chief guest was none other than President Rajapakse. It was celebrated under the theme loosely translated as “Swimming Against the Tide: A Great Journey”. This great journey was projected on the screen with dramatic effect, highlighting some of the most notable achievements of RAVAYA throughout the years. Here, I shall try to summarize more..

Call for stopping plunder of Pinnawela elephants, tuskers

Mar 3 (Island) Institutional conservation and external conservation are twofold methods of conservation of animal species. Institutional conservation is a method of conserving animals with a limited institutional framework. External conservation entails the protection of animals if they are threatened with extinction at the location that they live in or if their existence is threatened in that habitat. Accordingly, the Pinnawela Elephants Orphanage is deemed as more..

The Dhobis of Colombo

Mar 3 (CT) “The sound of fabric thrashing against stones,” this was the first thing we noticed about the dhobi village in the Kollupitiya, Polwatte area situated in the heart of Colombo. This area is where all the dirty laundry of Colombo comes to be washed. People from Colombo 7 to the poorest areas of this city, depend on this urban dhobi village to get their dirty clothes washed. In other words they depend on this village and its citizens to more..

Divi Neguma to benefit more families

Mar 3 (SO) Eliminating poverty is the biggest challenge any government, would face amidst the heavily fluctuating prices of the world consumer market. In such a backdrop rather going on mass scale it sounds more effective to strengthen the smallest unit of the society, the family. The stronger this unit is the stronger the society would be. In such a situation the Divi Neguma national development drive is a timely initiative to face the challenges of the modern world. more..

Will Sri Lanka shift more towards state capitalism as economic crisis worsens?

Mar 3 (DBS) A recent article by Charitha Ratwatte provides interesting reading about Corporatism and State Capitalism. It also focuses on various aspects of the current Chinese Corporatist model. The writer describes facets of Chinese model in progress known as the “Beijing Consensus” and ponders about the future of Sri Lanka as the economic crisis worsens. He also points to straws in the wind indicating the Country moving more towards State capitalism and pinpoints the flaws. more..

The LLRC Report and our options for recociliation

Mar 3 (Island) John Dryden’s oft-quoted couplet epitomises human nature. In defeat, we are unwilling to accept reality but in a false show of bravado, say of the enemy or opponent, ‘I’ll teach him a good lesson.’ That is why after the debacle at Mullivaikal, many LTTE supporters were not willing to believe that Prabhakaran had been killed or that the monolithic outfit he led also died with him. That is also why many apologists for the Rajapakse administration, more..

Editorial: From bullock carts to aircraft

Mar 3 (Island) It was only the other day that the Opposition politicians staged a series of noisy street protests against fuel price increases. They resorted to gimmicks of all sorts to grab the limelight. They rode bicycles and took bullock cart rides. But, a few days on the UNP members of the North Central Provincial Council have gone on an overseas junket, we are told! The Opposition is duty bound to take on the ruling party when economic burdens are placed on the people and more..

A journey to Mannar and the ‘Dancing Islands’

Mar 3 (ST) “Imagine being on one of those legendary islands of ‘Adam’s Bridge’ or ‘Rama Setu’ of the Ramayana fame! Many centuries ago, this 30 km stretch was a natural bridge connecting Sri Lanka to the southern tip of India; now, the ocean has reclaimed its own, leaving only a chain of sprinkled islands. On December 9, 2011, I was standing on the second island of the chain of limestone shoals between the Rameshwaran Island, off the south-eastern coast of India’s Tamil Nadu and more..

Reconstruction of war damaged houses under way

Mar 3 (DN) A partnership between the European Union, the Australian Government, the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), is supporting the reconstruction and repair of over 4,600 conflict damaged houses in Sri Lanka's Northern Province. The Government of Sri Lanka is supporting this initiative through the identification of priority community needs in the project locations. more..

Why Sri Lanka must ‘win’ at UNHRC

Mar 3 (GV) The strategy is clear: while acknowledging the reality that Sri Lanka is no longer an ongoing issue, efforts are being taken to justify a UNHRC resolution in the name of reconciliation, human rights and accountability. The last leg of the Sri Lankan war, or Eelam War IV has it has come to be known, was an anti-secessionist counter-insurgency operation launched by a sovereign government against its secessionist foe – a classified terrorist organisation in both more..

Web Patasala to promote IT among students

Mar 3 (DN) The Education Ministry in partnership with the State Trading Corporation and Etisalat Company yesterday, launched a 'Web Patasala' to facilitate the gaining of knowledge of school children through the internet. The launching ceremony was held at the Sugathadasa Stadium under the patronage of Minister Bandula Gunawardena, Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi and Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga. The main objective of this revolutionary venture was to provide school children with subject knowledge through more..

Catholic Bishops call for implementation of LLRC recommendations

Mar 3 (Island) The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Sri Lanka (CBCSL) has made a fervent appeal to the Govt towards implementation of the Recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry on LLRC. The full text of the statement is given below: Much has been written and discussed since the publication of the Report of the LLRC. The CBCSL is conscious of the important ministry of reconciliation Jesus has entrusted to his disciples. more..

School admission problem of children of transferred doctors solved

Mar 3 (Island) The Education Ministry has commenced implementing the school admission process for children of the doctors who areb transferred, says Govt Medical Officers’ Association General Secretary Dr. Chandika Epitakaduwa. The GMOA discussed the problem with President Mahinda Rajapaksa two months ago. President Rajapaksa realizing the difficulties experienced by doctors in admitting their children to proper schools when they went on transfers, more..