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The govt on the correct path

Jan 8 (Island) There is only one way to defeat England and the other western countries who would attempt in Geneva to rap Sri Lanka for alleged war crimes during the last two weeks of the humanitarian operations, and that is by organizing the other countries. Stephen Rapp is coming to Sri Lanka followed by Nisha Desai Biswal, to find out ways and means to rap Sri Lanka in connection with so called war crimes. Let them write their reports, then come to have a chat with some members of more..

Global craving for Lankan Bond grows

Jan 8 (FT) The Govt has successfully concluded yet another International Sovereign Bond issuance worth $ 1 billion, with the widespread demand reflecting good global appetite. Central Bank on behalf of the Govt successfully launched and priced a $ 1.0 billion five-year International Sovereign Bond (Issue) at a yield of 6.00% per annum. The Issue represents the sixth US Dollar benchmark offering in the more..

War Crimes charge: Urgent need for reappraisal of GoSL’s response

Jan 8 (Island) There couldn’t be a better choice than the US to examine the circumstances leading to eelam war IV and the bloody conclusion of the conflict on the banks of the Nanthikadal lagoon in May 2009. Having studied the capabilities and weaknesses of the Sri Lankan military vis a vis the LTTE in late 2002, on the invitation of the then Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe, the US made a series of recommendations aimed at enhancing the fighting capabilities of GoSL forces to meet more..

Grade 5 scholarship exam and psychological stress: What are the alternatives?

Jan 8 (Island) The Education Minister’s proposal to do away with the grade 5 scholarship exam created a huge uproar in the country. Apparently the National Educational Commission took this decision taking into consideration the psychological impact of this exam on primary school children. But many thought this was an attempt to block the only pathway available for a talented rural child to enter a prestigious school in a major city. As a provincial psychiatrist working in one of Sri Lanka’s more..

Bishop calls for international investigation into war crimes

Jan 8 (ICN) The Bishop of Mannar, Mgr Rayappu Joseph has called for an international investigation to ascertain the truth about alleged war crimes. He said: "Given that most of the Tamils in the north and east of the country no longer have confidence in an internal process. This will contribute to reconciliation". Bishop Rayappu Joseph, pointed out that many priests, lawyers, journalists and activists who have tried to more..

Fertilizer distribution methodology to be streamlined

Jan 8 (GDI) Measures will be taken to establish a Fertilizer Distribution Centre and a Fertilizer Warehouse for all 554 Agrarian Service Centres established island wide. This programme will be implemented so as to streamline the current methodology of distributing fertilizer and to ensure that adequate amounts of fertilizer are supplied to farmers at the guaranteed price of the govt. The ultimate target of this programme is to convert all the Agrarian Service Centers more..

Priceless gift lost for good on X’mas day

Jan 8 (Island) A 5-year-old child adopted by a childless couple after obtaining custody through courts on the recommendation of the probation officer, died in a freak accident on Christmas day when he was strangled by the rope of a swing he was playing with. This was revealed at the inquest held into the death of G. Jayamith Pium of Kaluwarippuwa, West Katana by Negombo Inquirer into Sudden Deaths, J. Wickremaratne, Incident had taken place while the foster father was away. more..

Will Dubai provide more for spinners?

Jan 8 (CI) If there is a pitch in the UAE that might make amends for the anticlimactic fourth and fifth days in Abu Dhabi, it is the surface in Dubai. In the last match at the venue, spinners accounted for 12 first-innings scalps and the match ended with a day to spare. Rangana Herath had done marginally better than Saeed Ajmal in the first Test, but in truth, neither were ever really a major threat. If either finds assistance in Dubai, it is unlikely more..

PHIs fail to supply MRI with food samples

Jan 8 (CT) The Medical Research Institute (MRI) has been unable as yet to identify the bacteria that had caused mass-scale food poisoning in Homagama, Meegoda and Horana recently, as Physical Health Inspectors (PHIs) had not provided correct food samples, reliable source from the Ministry of Health said. PHIs had sent only samples of uncooked chicken, which were collected from the food suppliers. "In order to identify the bacteria that had caused food poisoning, more..

45 complaints per day from migrant workers

Jan 8 (CT) The Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE), said it receives around 45 complaints each day, from domestic migrant workers. SLBFE General Manager, Mangala Randeniya, said the complaints were being made to the respective Sri Lankan foreign missions in the countries where Sri Lankans are employed as migrant workers and they mostly include non-payment of wages, renewal of contracts without consent and persecution and physical abuse. more..

Climate change brings an uncertain future to one of the world's finest teas

Jan 8 (E&E) In his tea garden up on the mountain, Piyasena Rajapakshe, 71, started his morning exercise by clouting tea bushes. He clouted here and there. Suddenly, one stalk fractured. Rajapakshe picked up the broken stalk, carefully peeled off its bark and found a black beetle as tiny as a sesame seed hidden inside. He removed the beetle and continued the next search. As an experienced tea grower, Rajapakshe more..

Sri Lanka to house ‘Colombo Process’ Secretariat

Jan 8 (DN) The Secretariat of the ‘Colombo Process’ (a gathering of Asian labour sending countries), will be moved to Colombo from this year, the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment said. The Chairmanship of the Colombo Process was transferred from the Govt of Bangladesh to the Govt of Sri Lanka during a meeting held at the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka in Geneva on October 21, 2013. The Secretariat currently located in Dhaka will be moved to Colombo shortly. more..

Laksala Museum Gallery Cafe more than just a handicraft boutique

Jan 8 (Island) Laksala Museum Gallery Cafe, which was conceptualized by Basil Rajapaksa under the Divi Neguma Social Development Scheme, was opened to the public on 1st August 2013 under the Mahinda Chinthana outlook program. Gallery Café is located in the premises of the National Museum, and has been built to blend perfectly with the architecture and atmosphere of the museum. The uniqueness of the Laksala Museum Gallery Cafe is that it is the first outlet which has been built in more..

Sri Lankan born American held in UAE over video to be released

Jan 8 (AP) An American who's been held in the UAE for nine months in connection with a satirical online video about youth culture in Dubai was expected to be released soon, the U.S. State Department said. Shezanne Cassim, 29, of Minnasota, was arrested in April, six months after he and others uploaded their spoof documentary to the Internet. Cassim and his co-defendants were accused of defaming the country's image more..

Yameen in Sri Lanka this month

Jan 8 (CG) Maldives President Yameen Abdul Gayoom will visit Sri Lanka later this month, the External Affairs Ministry in Colombo said. President Rajapaksa had earlier sent a letter to Yameen, extending an invitation to visit Sri Lanka. The letter was delivered to President Yameen during a courtesy call by the Sri Lankan High Commissioner Dickson Sarathchandra Dela last month. Accepting the invitation, President Yameen had noted that warm and friendly relations more..

Charge sheets against Lankans

Jan 8 (CG) The Indian police have filed charge sheets against 59 Sri Lankan fishermen held in Ramanathapuram, before the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) court. There are over 150 Sri Lankan fishermen in Indian jails, and over 300 Indian fishermen in Sri Lankan jails. The police filed four sets of charge sheets, accusing them of entering Indian waters to indulge in illegal activities. The police charged the fishermen, hailing from Negombo, Puttalam and Kalutara with more..

Police duo who went on an illegal assignment assaulted, tied to trees

Jan 8 (Island) A sub inspector and a sergeant who tried to get a bus released from a garage by force at Gannoruwa were assaulted by villagers there on Monday night and handed over to the Peradeniya police after tying them to trees. The two officers and six others who tried to obtain the release of the vehicle were arrested by the police following the incident were scheduled to be produced in court yesterday more..

CAA seizes 21,000 kg of rice unfit for consumption

Jan 8 (Island) Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) yesterday in a raid conducted on a warehouse on Bangalawatte Road, Mabole detected 21,000 kg of imported Basmathi rice unfit for human consumption. The consignment of rice was ready to be released to the market. Spokesman for the Ministry of Co–operatives and Internal Trade, said that acting on a tip-off the CAA officials had conducted the raid. Suspect would be produced before the Wattala Magistrate on Friday, more..

Memorial service to mark Lasantha’s fifth death anniversary today

Jan 8 (FT) A memorial service will be held at the gravesite of journalist and founder Editor of The Sunday Leader Lasantha Wickrematunge at Borella Kanatte at 9 a.m. today, to mark his fifth death anniversary. On Thursday, the Lasantha Wickrematunge candlelit memorial organised by Samagi will take place at 5:30 p.m., in front of Malagalage Primary School, Attidiya. Wickrematunge was attacked in 2009 in Attidiya while on his way to work at around more..

Navy responds to Jayalalithaa: No 'traditional waters' between SL and India

Jan 8 (CT) There is no such thing as 'traditional fishing waters' between Sri Lanka and India, Navy Spokesman, Commander Kosala Warnakulasuriya said, responding to a comment made by TN Chief Minister, Jayalalithaa. CM accused the SL Navy of harassing Indian fishermen who were fishing in their 'traditional waters' in the Gulf of Mannar. Commander explained, the term 'traditional fishing waters' no longer exists more..

Parents to protest today

Jan 8 (CT) Parents of students, who completed their Grade 5 Scholarship Exam last year, are planning to protest against the reduced number of intakes to popular schools, in front of the Education Ministry, today. Parents claim their children have been treated unjustly by the decision to restrict their opportunities to enter popular schools, despite the fact that they had received outstanding results for their performance at the exam. They were due to engage in the protest at 9 a.m. this morning, more..

OIC remanded in heroin case

Jan 8 (Island) Additional Magistrate of Colombo yesterday re-remanded till Jan 21, the OIC of the Wellampitiya Police Station, Chief Inspector Bandara Munasinghe and two other suspects, Senaka Madurusinghe and Fathima Fasseem, who had allegedly aided and abetted Bandara in drug trafficking. OIC is alleged to have retained 42 g of heroin in his official residence at Wellampitiya. Counsel Guneratne Wanninayake told the court that politicians who engaged in drug trafficking more..

President invites Palestinian business community to explore opportunities in SL

Jan 8 (FT) Sri Lanka extended an invitation to the Palestinian Business Community to explore the investment opportunities present in the country following the end of the war four years ago. President Rajapaksa, who is on a two-day visit to Palestine, extended an invitation to members of the Palestinian business community to visit Sri Lanka when he met with them Tuesday afternoon. Palestinian PM Dr. Rami Hamdallah, who more..

President opens Mahinda Rajapaksa Vocational Training Centre in Palestine

Jan 8 (GDI) President Rajapaksa, on Monday (6) opened the Mahinda Rajapaksa Vocational Training Centre in Betunia, Palestine. President and First Lady, who were accompanied by Palestinian Foreign Affairs Minister Riyad Al-Maliki were received by the Mayor of Betunia His Worship Ribhi Dola and the Governor of Ramallah Dr. Laila Ghammam. "You're contributing to the livelihoods of Palestinians and for building a good future for them so thank you very much for that," more..

New US resolution on Lanka

Jan 8 (CG) A United States (US) will be submitting a new resolution on Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva in March, a US official has said. Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran said that the visiting US Ambassador-at-Large at the Office of Global Criminal Justice, Stephen J. Rapp had mentioned this when he met a TNA delegation in Colombo. Sumanthiran told the BBC Tamil service that the resolution will push for more..

What is 'Ongoing, Ongoing'?

Jan 8 (CT) Ambassador-at-Large of the Office of Global Criminal Justice of the United States, Lawyer Stephen J. Rapp, appeared puzzled yesterday when he saw the website of the LLRC, and questioned what "Ongoing, Ongoing" as stated on the site, in the Action Plan of the LLRC, meant. When Rapp had asked what the "level of ongoing" of the implementation of the LLRC recommendations was, none of the officials who had met him more..

Keeping afloat in muddy waters

Jan 8 (DM) With the consequences of global warming and other forms of environmental pollution reaching apocalyptic proportions which some see as signs of end-of-the-world times, Sri Lanka also needs to take some urgent and effective action to curb this trend towards self-destruction. During the past week large parts of the United States have been freezing in the worst winter storms of their history, with temperatures in some of them plunging as low as 50ºC below freezing point more..

Is Parliament's dignity under threat?

Jan 8 (DM) It appears that everyone is moaning at the qualitative decline of Parliamentary debate in our country; this is indeed a shame for the standard of debate and the conduct of our MPs which was very high in the good old days - though the govt understands the problem and Mr. Speaker is himself concerned, as reported in the papers, Govt it appears does not deem it an urgent and important matter; it is therefore incumbent on us the people to do what we can, to at least raise more..

Pros and cons of extending the retirement age

Jan 8 (DM) Leaning against a wheel barrow filled with some foul smelling garbage 74- year -old R.A.L Perera was exhausted even though his working day was still young. He said that he had been cleaning the streets of Colombo for 6 years. At an age where according to country’s laws he should be enjoying his retirement–an impractical dream in the present day economic environment. “Prior to this job I was working for more..

Norochcholai: CEB in power battle to win coal war

Jan 8 (ST) Employees of the Lakvijaya Power Station in Norochcholai assembled in its lobby on New Year’s Day to hear speeches by the management. Chinese workers cycled to work while, in the distance, puffs of white steam rose from the generator of the coal-power plant’s first unit. “Everyone here wants this project to succeed,” said an official, speaking into a mike. “It is true that the first phase has had some more..

Fighting the cost of living

Jan 8 (SL) With the cost of living currently on a drastic increase, meeting their daily needs is a challenge consumers must necessarily face, when purchasing goods in the market. The daily fluctuation in prices of produce and goods means the public is never quite aware how much they would have to spend on goods, making this essential task all the more difficult. It is known that intermediates benefit from the more..

The elephant in the president’s room

Jan 8 (TOI) The scheduled official visit of Sri Lanka’s President Mahinda Rajapaksa to Israel this week was complicated by an elephant in the room — after Rajapaksa made it known he would like to present his counterpart President Shimon Peres with a pachyderm, as a gift between friends. The idea first came up as arrangements were made for the official visit, scheduled to begin on Wednesday. more..

Draft Seed Act: a sell-out to multinationals?

Jan 8 (Island) The govt was trying to sell the country’s right to own its seed varieties to multinational companies through the draft Seed Act, Centre for Environmental and Nature Studies (CENS) claimed. National Coordinator of CENS, environmentalist Ravindra Kariyawasam said that the govt after abolishing the Seed Act 2003 had introduced the Seed Act 2011. But after a series of protests by farmers and environmentalists more..

UL 503 in double jeopardy in one day

Jan 8 (Island) The windshield of the Heathrow bound UL 503 which had cracked about 45 minutes after delayed take-off from Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) on the afternoon of January 3 was the very one replaced due to a defect earlier in the day, a SriLankan airlines spokesperson said. Media Relations Manager of SriLankan Deepal Perera acknowledged that the replacement of the windshield caused a delay. more..

Police crackdown on Jaffna underworld: 21-year-old leader among 13 arrested

Jan 8 (Island) Acting on information elicited from an underworld figure in the North, police arrested 12 persons in a series of raids over the past 36 hours ending 6.00 am yesterday. It was the first major operation undertaken by law enforcement agencies in the Jaffna peninsula since the conclusion of the conflict in May 2009. The Island revealed the existence of a Jaffna underworld in a lead story headlined UPFA constituent more..

'The time is right to establish myself as a politician'

Jan 8 (DM) Since her entry into the media spotlight in 2011, Hirunika Premachandra, daughter of assassinated SLFP politician Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra created ripples in the country’s political arena as she fought for justice for her father’s murder. A law student and aspiring politician, in her interview with Daily Mirror, speaks of the speculations concerning her candidacy for the upcoming WPC polls, more..

Indian govt ordered to file counter affidavit on warship sale to Sri Lanka

Jan 8 (ENS) Expressing serious concern over the repeated arrest of Tamil Nadu fishermen by the Sri Lankan Navy, the Madras High Court (Madurai Bench) has directed the Union Govt to file a counter affidavit on a petition praying to restrain the Indian Govt from selling two naval warships to the Island Nation. While hearing the petition filed by a Madurai based advocate, a bench comprising Justices R Sudhakar more..

'Implementing LLRC recommendations: Sri Lanka not covering a syllabus'

Jan 8 (DN) Sri Lanka is not covering a syllabus which a school Principal has handed over to his teachers, in terms of its activities pertaining to implementing the LLRC recommendations, Deputy Minister Neomal Perera said. Asked about the visit of US Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues in the office of Global Criminal Justice, Stephen J. Rapp, who is currently in Sri Lanka to discuss war crime allegations more..

UNP LC has not decided to replace Sajith, Thalatha as members

Jan 8 (Island) The UNP Leadership Council(LC) said that it had not requested the Working Committee to remove Sajith Premadasa and Thalatha Athukorale, who have failed to accept their appointments to the LC. Kabir Hashim, spokesperson for the LC said that they had not discussed replacing Sajith and Thalatha, who had not assumed duties even over two months after the Council was constituted. "Since no one has raised the matter, there obviously cannot be any recommendation by. more..

Police competition to tap new crime fighting innovations

Jan 8 (Island) Police Headquarters announced that a ‘Hardware and Software Competition’ for new innovations would be held parallel to the ‘Deyata Kirula Exhibition’ to be held from February 2 to 10 at Kuliyapitiya. Police spokesman SSP Ajith Rohana said that the competition would be a novel experience to individuals or companies or groups keen to use computer technology to combat crime as the police needed to update its system to facilitate investigations. more..