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Can US ignore TNAs complicity in LTTE terror? Gotabhaya

Apr 12 (Island) Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa yesterday said that US Ambassador Michele J. Sison was either ignorant of the post-war situation in the country or chose to ignore it in deeping with the US agenda. Ambassador Sisons recent speech at the Galle Face Hotel, was meant to strengthen those still pursuing a separatist agenda, both here and abroad, Defence Secretary Rajapaksa said. He was responding to more..

Adidas signs-up Mahela as brand ambassador

Apr 12 (IT) Mahela Jayawardene, who is also the captain of IPL team Delhi Daredevils, is all set to sport the three stripes as German sportswear giant Adidas has signed him up as brand ambassador. To kick start this partnership, he will be part of Adidas’ latest digital and retail campaign for the IPL- 'Loose the heat, keep the fire'- a campaign based on the apparel technology from Adidas, ClimaCool+. He joins Adidas’ athlete portfolio, including the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Suresh Raina, Keiron more..

Kidneys of NCP residents comparatively small

Apr 12 (DM) Healthy youth of the North Central Province possessed kidneys which were comparatively small, a study has revealed. Researchers said that it could be indicative of early stage of kidney disease. Initial research carried out by the Rajarata University research team on arsenic, revealed that healthy youth between the ages of 15- 30 from the Province had kidneys which were comparatively small. Dr. Channa Jayasumana a member of the research team said that more..

Central Bank pays Washington based PR firm Rs. 100mn to deepen ties with US

Apr 12 (Island) The Central Bank of Sri Lanka has engaged the services of a Washington based PR agency for a consideration of Rs. 100 million in order to deepen defence, investment, trade and cultural links with the US ahead of the UNHRC sessions in 2013. The Central Bank would pay Rs. 100 million for a year’s service provided by the Thompson Advisory Group, USA (TAG). The contract was signed by Central Bank more..

Editorial : Towards a meaningful Avurudu!

Apr 12 (DM) Soon the entire country will be celebrating Sinhala and Tamil New Year. This is the fourth Avurudu season the country will be celebrating after the end of a thirty year civil conflict. For the last three years we all were able to taste what it was really meant by Avurudu. No guns were fired and body bags stopped coming. School children in the North were not kidnapped to create child soldiers out of them. Sellamma made Pongal Jaffna and Senehelatha was able to more..

He detested communalism or racism

Apr 12 (DM) Marxism tells us that under the power of capital, man can achieve only an ‘estranged’ realisation of species - being. However the ideology of Marxism could create in a capitalist society an enclave of conscious beings, through revolutionary praxis. Thus, one who understands and gets involved in conscious revolutionary practice, can come out of alienation to see the world as it is. It was Buddha who understood first, the human ability to go beyond common sense and more..

When mothers kill their own new borns

Apr 12 (SL) It is a bizarre and frightening deed that elicits fathomless horror: an apparently normal mother suddenly snaps and kills her newborn. Sadly, we hear it more frequently nowadays in Sri Lanka. In January this year, a woman had murdered and buried her newborn; the mother was an employee of a garment factory. In February, a 22-year-old woman had murdered her baby immediately after it was born in the more..

Northern railway project fast-tracked

Apr 12 (CT) The North Railway Reconstruction Project, which includes the Medawachchiya- Talaimannar Jetty Project and the Omanthai-Kankesanthurai Reconstructing Project, is taking shape at an accelerated pace and nearing completion. At present, the trains are operative only up to Medawachchiya and Omanthai on the Northern Railway Line. The tracks, rolling stock and other infrastructure were destroyed by the more..

JVP has bones to pick with then-UNP govt. as graves date to ’86-’89 period

Apr 12 (ST) Reports by experts on the findings of the mass grave at Matale last week, has drawn mixed reactions from the relevant authorities and political parties, but the mystery remains unsolved, pending a court decision. The grave situated in the backyard of the Matale Government Hospital, was discovered by labourers digging a trench for the construction of a bio-gas tank, on November 26 last year. more..

Special pooja for Sri Lanka-Tamil Nadu film industry ties

Apr 12 (ENS) Sinhalese film artistes on Thursday held an “Adhishthana Pooja” or an invocation for divine help to bring about a rapprochement between the Sinhalese film industry and the film fraternity in Tamil Nadu. The two entities are currently divided over the Lankan Tamil issue. The Lankan artistes, including top performers like Ravindra Randeniya, Malani Fonseka and Geetha Kumarasinghe, gathered at the more..

Dayan’s book on Castro merits attention

Apr 12 (CT) A top Israeli scholar-analyst, who served as adviser to several Prime Ministers, has described Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka's book on Fidel Castro as a 'fascinating book' that 'deserves attention by all concerned with global norms' in a review posted in January 2013 on Yehezkel Dror, Emeritus Professor of Political Science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, was Senior Policy Planning and Analysis Adviser more..

Water Board Chairman assures no cuts

Apr 12 (Island) The Public should not worry about sudden water cuts during the festive season, however, despite satisfactory water levels in the reservoirs, people should try to conserve water without wasting it, a top official of the National Water Supply and Drainage Board said. The Boards Chairman Karunasena Hettiarachchi told The Island that yesterdays water cut in the Mount Lavinia, Dehiwela and Wellawatte more..

Sri Lanka set sights on further improvement

Apr 12 (RWC) There is something to be said for winning in style - just ask Sri Lanka. The Brave Elephants snatched promotion to the Top 5 of the HSBC Asian 5 Nations during the early weeks of April, securing a spot alongside the region’s heavyweights as qualifying for Rugby World Cup 2015 steps up a gear in 2014. Under the guidance of South African coach Ravin du Plessis Sri Lanka produced a stunning display to defeat more..

Sri Lankans flown to Christmas Island

Apr 12 (TA) THE Sri Lankans who arrived undetected in Geraldton harbour on Tuesday were last night on a charter flight to Christmas Island, as refugee advocates voiced concerns the group was being shielded from lawyers. Most of the 66 passengers aboard the donated Deutsche Bank vessel, whose stealth arrival to the mainland triggered an internal Customs and Border Protection review, left Perth last night for Christmas more..

Srilankan, Mihin losses widen

Apr 12 (DM) The national car rier, SriLankan Airlines and the state-run budget carrier Mihin Lanka saw their losses widening during the year 2012. SriLankan Airlines reported an operating loss of Rs.20.5 billion during the year against Rs.19.1 billion operating loss it incurred in 2011. Despite the total revenue of the airline increasing by 36.1% to Rs.107.4 billion, the operating expenditure rose 30.6% to Rs.128 billion during the year. more..

'US stands ready to partner with Sri Lanka'

Apr 12 (PTI) Greeting the Sri Lankans on the occasion of their New Year, US Secretary of State John Kerry has said that the United States stands ready to partner with the island nation as it works to make progress on reconciliation and accountability. "On behalf of President Obama and the American people, I am eager to support the Sri Lankan people in this journey as you work to make progress on reconciliation and accountability more..

Editorial : Cowboy politics won't do

Apr 12 (CT) Michele J. Sison, the United States Ambassador in Sri Lanka, hit the nail on the head once again when she asserted that some of the most important steps in achieving real reconciliation in Sri Lanka have not yet moved ahead. This includes a dialogue on political devolution with the TNA. As she said, there is no way the Govt of Sri Lanka can understate the criticality of an ongoing dialogue with the people’s representatives of the Tamils in the North and East. more..

Accusations, Sinhala Kings, history and the Muslims in Sri Lanka

Apr 12 (CT) It is pathetic that some extremist Buddhist people are protesting against Muslims in Sri Lanka today for no reason. Muslim people have been accused of many social issues. They have done nothing wrong in Sri Lankan history and they have been accusing of spreading fundamentalism in Sir Lanka . They have been accused of supporting al-Qaida. They have been accused of supporting Taliban. They have been accusing of building more mosques in Sri Lanka. more..

US and the LTTE should join together to defeat the Muslims – pro-LTTE Tamils

Apr 12 (CT) “Note: The U.S. team repeatedly asked interlocutors about continuing reports of Muslim extremism in the east. Most observers had little clear- cut information about the matter and Muslim interlocutors denied it was a factor. Nonetheless, the team did notice many new mosques under construction and various “Islamic foundation” offices operating in Muslim towns. It is hard to see how eastern Muslims could afford more..

Harsh reality of anticipated Northern elections

Apr 12 (CT) The passage of the second US-sponsored resolution at the March session of the UNHRC in Geneva appears to have served as a wake-up call to the govt. One aspect of the govt’s response has been to hire a new public relations company in the United States. This PR effort seeks a favourable revision of US policy through a more professional approach than the previous PR effort. The mandate of the new public relations initiative is to positively project the govt’s achievements more..

Doctors readying for war over ‘service minute’

Apr 12 (Island) Doctors are gearing up for war against the government over their service minute. Government Medical Officers’ Association General Secretary Dr. Chandika Epitakaduwa yesterday said that it would be compelled to take stronger trade union action, in the near future, if the Health Ministry failed to amend the doctors’ ‘service minute’ issued in 2006. More than six years had passed but the service minute had not been amended or implemented. more..

Public Utilities Commission under pressure to tackle corruption

Apr 12 (Island) The Public Utilities Commission, the regulatory body, should take measures to cut down on exorbitant and underhand deals that would put the debt ridden CEB into further trouble, a power sector expert said. He urged the Commission to intervene in all trade deals particularly on the cost aspects to ensure transparency. "Coal deals are one of the areas that are often neglected despite information that more..

Police warn of fake police

Apr 12 (CG) The police headquarters today warned the public to be on the alert of fake policemen who are attempting to extort money from people. The police said that there have been complaints of people telephoning the public and demanding money. The men who telephone the public claim they are from the police and are conducting investigations into LTTE links with the public. The caller, at times, claims that there is information that the person answering the call had links more..

Malaysia-Sri Lanka Business Council revived

Apr 12 (BT) The Malaysia-Sri Lanka Business Council has been revived after being defunct for several years, says the Sri Lanka High Commission. The decision was made following a meeting on Tuesday which was coordinated by Acting High Commissioner Major General S.W.L. Daulagala with representatives of core business organisations. "The business council will serve as a driving force to strengthen business and investment ties between private sector stakeholders, more..

Lanka police to probe suspicious presence near mass grave

Apr 12 (PTI) An investigation into the alleged presence of an unidentified group near a mass grave where some 154 skeletons were recovered in Sri Lanka's central province has been ordered. Police chief N K Ilangakoon had asked the Superintendent in the central town of Matale to investigate the complaint lodged by the opposition JVP over the alleged presence of a group clad in military uniform on Tuesday night near the more..

Seoul asks Lanka to stay calm, downplays threat from Pyongyang

Apr 12 (PTI) Amid continuous "threats of war" from North Korea, South Korea today asked Sri Lanka to stay calm over the safety of its more than 25,000 workers, saying Seoul was maintaining full preparedness for possible nuclear strikes from Pyongyang."There are around 230,000 foreign workers in Korea including 25,000 Sri Lankans, and they are valuable contributors to the Korean economy as well as to bilateral relations between Korea and their origin countries," more..

NICs to be mandatory from 15?

Apr 12 (DM) The Registration of Persons Department has proposed to bring down the present age limit for individuals to obtain National Identity Cards from 16 to 15 years, officials said yesterday. The Department has proposed to implement this decision along with the introduction of electronic NICs. The Department has sought to amend the Persons Registration Act to accommodate this proposal. The Act, originally enacted in 1968, was amended twice in 1971. more..

'Gotabaya's Remarks Not Acceptable'

Apr 12 (OI) India today disapproved of a top Sri Lankan official's reported remark about it regarding terrorism in that country, saying the armed conflict there was a result of Colombo denying rights to Tamils there. Responding to Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa's reported remark that India could never absolve itself of the responsibility for creating terrorism in his country, Union Minister V Narayanasamy said the more..

Lankans in Dubai will not be deported

Apr 12 (CG) About 19 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees who feared deportation after they being stranded in Dubai can breathe easy with the UNHCR refuting reports that they would be sent back home, the Times of India reported. “UNHCR is looking for a solution to resettle the 19 refugees in other countries. We have full cooperation from the UAE government and there is no threat of the refugees being sent back to Sri Lanka,” said Babar Baloch, spokesperson for UNHCR in Geneva. more..

Categorising mercury as dangerous chemicals: SLSI decision pending

Apr 12 (Island) The Sri Lanka Standards Institution (SLSI) will give priority to discussions on the recommendations that mercury be added to the list of dangerous chemicals in the forthcoming listing. However, the decision would be taken by a committee of experts comprising various stakeholders, a high ranking SLSI official said. SLSI Director General Dr. L. N. Senaweera told The Island that they had taken the matter into consideration and were working hard on it. more..

Sri Lanka rejects US request for talks on electricity tariffs

Apr 12 (DM) The govt has rejected a request by the US embassy in Colombo for a special discussion with senior officials of the CEB with regard to the proposed revision of electricity tariffs, informed sources revealed. It was reported that Ms. Allison V. Areias-Vogel, the Economic and Commercial Affairs Chief of the US Embassy in Colombo had written to the chairman of the CEB W B Ganegala and requested permission to more..

Indo – Lanka ferry to resume

Apr 12 (CG) India and Sri Lanka have agreed to resume the ferry service between Rameshwaram and Talaimannar within the next two months, Additional Secretary of the Indian External Affairs Ministry P S Raghavan said. The service was suspended in 2012. India has also extended financial grants to businesses in northern Sri Lanka, ravaged by the nearly three-decade-long civil war, to promote economic development and prosperity in the country, the Press Trust of India reported. more..

Website claims Soosai committed suicide

Apr 12 (CG) An Indian website has claimed that LTTE Sea Tiger leader Soosai had committed suicide during the final stages of the war. The website, Athirvu, says Soosai swallowed a cyanide capsule and also shot himself using his personal weapon near the beach between Mullivaikal and Nandikadal on May 17, 2009. He had committed suicide after it became clear that senior LTTE leaders could not escape from the area as they were surrounded by the security forces. more..

SF says Soosai did not commit suicide

Apr 12 (DM) Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka rejected media reports to the effect that LTTE sea tiger leader “Soosai” committed suicide and said that he was killed during the last day of the war along with LTTE Leader Prabhakaran by the Army. “He was killed along with Prabhakaran and around 100 fighters during the last day of the war by the Army. We found the bullet ridden bodies of both Prabhakharan and Soosai. more..

Cricket blooms after a war

Apr 12 (CI) Not far south of the town of Mankulam, six boys are playing a neighbourhood match. All are dark and scrawny, none older than 12. The smallest of them takes guard in front of stumps improvised from a strip of reconstituted wood and propped up by old bricks. He grips his bat near the bottom of the crudely fashioned handle, and taps it on the ground as the bowler, a much taller kid with dangling arms, begins his approach. The run-up is rhythmic and the action smooth, but he has overpitched more..

Artillery Regiment celebrates 125th Anniversary

Apr 12 (Island) Sri Lanka Artillery (SLA), one of the oldest of the country’s twelve regiments, celebrates its 125th birth anniversary today. President Mahinda Rajapaksa would grace a spectacular ceremony on April 23 in Panagoda to distribute President’s and Regimental Colours, Major Janaka Samarasiri said. About 43 officers and 529 other rankers in the regiment have been recognized as those who had made the supreme sacrifice during the 30-year-long war against terrorism. more..

Shed obsession with 13th Amendment: SL Tamil parties to Indian MPs

Apr 12 (Hindu) The obsession with the 13th amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution, following the Indo-Sri Lanka accord of 1987, will hardly help the Tamils, politicians and activists in northern Sri Lanka told the Indian parliamentary delegation, which wound up its visit to Sri Lanka on Thursday. While members of the Indian delegation were rather reluctant to speak to the media here, enquiries with political parties, academics more..

Coast Guard averts clash between Indian and Sri Lankan fishermen

Apr 12 (PTI) Averting a possible clash between 46 fishermen, who ventured into the sea from the district, and their Sri Lankan counterparts near the IMBL, the Coast Guard rescued them and brought them back, officials said on Friday. The Nagapattinam fishermen were handed over to District Collector by the Coast Guard on Thursday night. An argument had taken place between the Indian fishermen and their Sri Lankan counterparts near the International Maritime Boundary Line on more..

Sri Lanka's savings ratio to go up if state firms cut losses

Apr 12 (LBO) Sri Lanka's domestic savings ratio will be boosted if large losses in state enterprises are reduced, Central Bank deputy Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe said. the budget where total revenues cannot meet the even the spending desires of the rulers. In 2012, Sri Lanka had a domestic savings rate of 17% of gross domestic product with the central govt running a current account deficit of 1.4% of GDP. The private savings rate was therefore 18.4% in 2012. But due to a classification problem, more..

Police, BBS block peaceful vigil

Apr 12 (CG) The Bodu Bala Sena, with the assistance of the police, prevented a peaceful candle lit vigil from taking place outside the Bodu Bala Sena headquarters in Thunmulla late this evening. A small crowd under the banner ‘Buddhists Questioning Bodu Bala Sena’ stood outside the Bodu Bala Sena headquarters and attempted to stage the vigil calling for an end to hate speeches. However Bodu Bala Sena executive member Dilantha Widanage led a group of more..