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Myanmar anti-Muslim rhetoric similar to SL

Mar 10 (AA) The anti-Muslim rhetoric of Sri Lanka is similar to that of Myanmar, an international panel of experts at a conference on violence in the two countries concluded this week. Although no one has died in anti-Muslim violence in Sri Lanka, speakers at the March 6 discussion said that the language of hatred is similar to that in Myanmar where hundreds of Rohingya Muslims are reported to have lost their lives. Held at the Central European University's School of Public policy in Budapest, more..

Accountability in focus

Mar 10 (Hindu) Sri Lankan President Rajapaksa will have much to worry about when the 25th session of the UNHRC takes up the ‘report of the OHCHR on promoting reconciliation and accountability in Sri Lanka’ on March 26. Despite the fact that the 47-member Council has 14 new members, including some known friends of Sri Lanka, such as China, Cuba, Russia and Saudi Arabia, the draft resolution submitted by the United States is forceful as it incorporates several new aspects: more..

EU maintains 110 million Euro financial aid to Sri Lanka

Mar 10 (ST) Despite concerns on human rights, good governance, and ethical industrial practices, European Union’s (EU) financial assistance to Sri Lanka will continue at the same level without any change from the previous six year period, the new EU delegation head in Sri Lanka said. The EU financial assistance will remain at Euros 110 million for the period of 2014 to 2020, exactly the same level of 2007 – 2013 period, he revealed. more..

Minister wants Parliament shifted to Hambantota

Mar 10 (CT) Hambantota now has all the infrastructure, but what is lacking currently is a Parliament, Minister Mahinda Amaraweera, said. Hambantota currently has superhighways, hotels, a harbour, an airport, and railway systems. He said, events such as Independence Day celebrations and the Deyata Kirula exhibition, which were formerly confined to Colombo, are now held elsewhere in the country, in different cities and villages, and added that therefore, temporarily taking more..

India and Sri Lanka dominate international kabaddi championships

Mar 10 (TS) TEAM Delhi India staged a tremendous comeback against Sri Lanka’s Army Colombo in the men’s final of the 5th Kuala Lumpur International Inter-City Kabaddi Championships and emerged champions with a one-point victory. Delhi beat their opponent 17-16 after a raider from the opposition landed himself in a compromising position and was captured shortly before the end of the match. A deafening cheer broke out as the champions celebrated their hard-fought victory more..

SLT partners 15 telcos to build undersea cable system

Mar 10 (CT) Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) - the country's ICT giant announces that the company has partnered 15 international telecommunication operators representing 17 countries to build the South East Asia - Middle East - Western Europe 5 (SEA-ME-WE 5) state-of-the-art undersea cable system: a multi-regional superhighway spanning approximately 20,000 km from Asia Pacific to Europe via Sri Lanka, more..

CCD suspect same weapon used

Mar 10 (CT) The Colombo Crimes Division (CCD) has been tasked with investigating last week's shooting targeting the residences of two senior Excise Department officials. The residences of the Commissioner General of Excise, Wasantha Hapuarachchi, located at Pamunugama-Ja-Ela, and that of the Officer-in-Charge of the Special Excise Investigations Unit, Rosmand Fernando, located in Rukmalgama-Kottawa, were shot at early Thursday morning by unidentified individuals. more..

Kudu Chamil caught at BIA

Mar 10 (Island) CID sleuths on Saturday arrested one of the chief drug dealers in the Southern Province identified as ‘Kudu Chamil’ as he arrived at the BIA from Thailand. He was arrested in connection with a murder in the Gandara area. Kudu Chamil is said to be the chief distributor of drugs brought down to the country by notorious drug lord Ratgama Vidura, now resident in Italy. Ratgama Vidura is also said to be a close friend of Ice Manju, who was a member of the LTTE more..

SLC says working on formula to solve row over payments

Mar 10 (ST) As the standoff between the Sri Lanka Cricket administration and the National cricketers over the payment of ICC guarantee money continues, Sri Lanka Cricket expresses hope that a new formula will pave the way for an amicable settlement in the next few days. A senior official said their formula would be beneficial to both parties. Earlier, the cash-strapped SLC had couriered the contract documents to the players who were more..

Sri Lanka inquiry: genuine progress or diplomatic fudge?

Mar 10 (C4) The British PM promised at the Commonwealth heads of govt meeting in Colombo last year that if Sri Lanka did not do enough investigate allegations of human rights violations committed by its forces, then he would push for the UN to takeover. The deadline he set the Sri Lankan govt, 2 March, has now passed. Many of the allegations of human rights violations and war crimes have been brought to light by Channel 4 News, and on Sunday night journalist more..

No killer piranhas in Diyawanna

Mar 10 (Island) Reports that killer piranhas were found in Diyawanna Oya were unfounded experts and environmentalists said, stressing that they had not come across a single one in the local water bodies. There may be different species like Paccu or Dollar Fish, they added. One expert stressed that piranhas could not survive in the Diyawanna Oya as it was polluted. Researcher Kelum Manamendra-arachchi said that he had neither heard nor come across piranha in local water bodies. more..

Sri Lanka return to heroes' welcome

Mar 10 (CI) "Four World Cup finals, four heartbreaks, but this is what it feels like to finally win something," one Sri Lanka fan was overheard saying, as the open-top bus carrying Sri Lanka's cricketers came into view near SLC headquarters. She was one of thousands who lined the streets, waving flags, decked in blue, tooting horns, and occasionally breaking out in a baila-flavoured jig as they awaited the Asia Cup-winners. more..

Three killed, 3 more injured in fire

Mar 10 (CG) Three people were killed and three others were injured following a fire in a house in Kataragama. Police said that an individual was believed to have set himself on fire in the house which resulted in the deaths and injuries. The police had received information last night that the house, located at Raja Mawatha, in Kataragama was on fire. Area residents and the police doused the flames and found two people dead inside while another four, including a child were injured. more..

Private buses barred from expressways

Mar 10 (CT) The government has decided not to grant route permits for private buses to operate on expressways, the Vice Chairman of the Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB), L.A. Wimalaratne, said. The decision was taken after repeated incidents of misconduct of private bus operators who ply on the Southern Expressway, had been reported. As such, only buses that come under the purview of the Expressway Transport Company (Pvt) Ltd., (under the Ministry of Ports and Highways) and more..

Britain joins call for UN to investigate alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka

Mar 10 (Guardian) Britain is to join the US and three other countries in pushing for a full international inquiry into alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka after the govt there failed to satisfy international calls for a such an inquiry, Downing Street announced on Sunday. Speaking last November at the CHOGM, David Cameron gave Sri Lanka four months to conduct "a credible, thorough inquiry" into crimes alleged to have been committed during more..

Police seek Interpol help to track down drug dealers

Mar 10 (Island) Police have requested Interpol to provide them with the photographs and details of all leading drug dealers in Pakistan. A senior police officer said that there was a possibility of Pakistan drug dealers frequently visited Sri Lanka. Police had found two containers from Pakistan with heroin. A coordinating Secretary to PM D.M. Jayaratne had made a request to the Customs seeking demurrage waiver for one of those containers and in the aftermath controversy, he resigned. more..

Hakeem will not budge

Mar 10 (Island) SLMC led by Minister Rauff Hakeem would not quit the govt simply because it is being urged to do so by the JHU and NFF who are also constituent parties of the UPFA government, the SLMC said. Hakeem fell foul with President Rajapaksa at last week's cabinet meeting where the latter castigated the former over the submission of a document on attacks on muslim places of religious worship including 261 allegations to UN Human Rights Commissioner Navanethem Pillai. more..

Sam, Wigi accept US resolution

Mar 10 (CG) TNA leader R Sampanthan and Northern Province Chief Minister C V Wigneswaran have, in a joint statement, accepted the US draft resolution on Sri Lanka submitted to the UNHRC. The joint statement said that the TNA has given careful consideration to the draft resolution on Sri Lanka proposed at the 25th sessions of the UNHRC by the US, UK, Montenegro, Macedonia and Mauritius. more..

Let officials take a clue from cricketers

Mar 10 (DM) It was good news for Sri Lankan sports with victory finally achieved on Saturday after a prolonged period of heartbreak. Emerging Asian champions with an unbeaten record is no small task considering that Sri Lanka was without a few seniors like Dilshan, Nuwan Kulasekara and Rangaka Herath. World champions India are always a favourite in this regional tournament, but the absence of a few top Indian stars in the line-up had a bearing in the final outcome as their more..

Increasing Inequality, Social Justice and Socio-Political Stability

Mar 10 (DM) Equality and equal opportunities were two ideas that dominated the national political discourse in this country even before Sri Lanka gained independence from British rule in 1948. There were a range of national legislation and state interventions from the early 1930s onwards in such areas as land, education and human settlement. The trend continued after independence and culminated in the debate in the mid 1970s as to whether the country had been too obsessed with more..

MRIA handles 1,800 flight movements during 11 months

Mar 10 (CT) Chairman of Airport and Aviation Services Prasanna Wickremasuriya said that the Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) during the 11 months since it was commissioned handled more than 1,800 flights movements. One of the world's leading airlines, Emirates, would use MRIA for refuelling and for technical checkups, paving the way for Sri Lanka to become South Asia's Regional Hub. more..

UNP women’s meeting disrupted by party members – Mayor

Mar 10 (Island) Colombo Mayor A.J.M. Muzammil accused two UNP Colombo Central organisers of not only disrupting a meeting of the Kantha Saviya headed by his wife Ferouza at Maligawatte last Tuesday, but also assaulting some of the women present. He said that those two politicians had instigated certain UNPers of the area, claiming that he (Muzammil) was going to attack UNP National Leader Ranil Wickremasinghe and more..

White water rafters protest building of dam

Mar 10 (Island) The White Water Rafting Association of Sri Lanka (WWRASL) yesterday staged a protest at Kitulgala town against the Broadlands Hydro Power Project claiming that it would sound the death knell for their business as there wouldn’t be enough water for sports in the event of the river being dammed. Hundreds of people engaged in the business and their dependents who participated in the protest more..

Draft Co-Sponsors Pow-Wow

Mar 10 (SL) Two days after the United States released its draft resolution on Sri Lanka at the UNHRC in Geneva, heavy lobbying was underway both for and against the document which will be taken for a vote later this month. Room E-3023 at the UN building in Geneva was booked by the Permanent Mission of the United States in Geneva last Wednesday for a meeting with the Co-sponsors on the draft resolution on more..

Dry zone gets drier and drier

Mar 10 (ST) The scarcity of drinking water has added to the burdens of the villagers of the dry zone as the drought continued for the fourth successive month, officials said. Drinking water is being distributed in bowsers to the hardest hit areas. “The reservoirs in the Puttalam District are drying up. Some villagers don’t have access to any source of drinking water. We have started distributing water to areas such as Nawagaththeegama, more..

Commonwealth Day is observed today

Mar 10 (GDI) Today is Commonwealth Day. Throughout the week of 10-17 March, the Commonwealth family celebrates this year’s theme − ‘Team Commonwealth’. The Commonwealth is an extraordinary team; 53 widely differing countries united in shared values working together to further common aims. The theme expresses a very real spirit of friendship and motivation towards the shared goals and values that exist more..

Schoolboy shot dead by robbers

Mar 10 (Island) An 18-year-old schoolboy died of gun shot injuries he received at the hands of a gang of robbers who tried to rob his family shop at Asgiri-Walpola in Udugampola, Gampaha on Saturday night. Victim was identified as Nipun Jayathilake, a GCE A/L student of Divulapitiya Gnanodaya Central College. He was having dinner at his home when he heard his mother who was at their shop adjacent to the house cry out for help more..

Sri-Lankan fishermen to move rights council

Mar 10 (ENS) Leaders of North Sri Lankan fishermen are likely to approach the Human Rights Council of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) and the courts in a stepped-up effort to stop Indian fishermen from poaching in Lankan waters. This was the outcome of a meeting of fishermen’s organisations held here on March 7, said NM Alam of the Mannar-based Union of Fishermen’s Co-operatives. “Indian fishermen have been brazenly violating more..

Sri Lanka no longer 'uncomfortable' with inflation blot on economic record

Mar 10 (LBO) Sri Lanka is no longer "uncomfortable" with the blot of high inflation in its economic record when meeting international agencies and visiting businessmen, a top official said. "We no longer feel uncomfortable to speak to the IMF, the World Bank, the international rating agencies, the international business community, all the visiting investors," Treasury Secretary P B Jayasundera said. "Because we can positively say more..

National Drug Policy will be presented to President today

Mar 10 (GDI) The long awaited National Drug Policy, which was continuously obstructed by the multi national drug mafia, will be handed over to President Mahinda Rajapaksa today by the Minister of Health Maithripala Sirisena. The new policy will put an end to operations of the drug mafia in the country. Handing over of the National Drug Policy coincides with the National Health Week which commences today. more..

Is South Africa’s model of TRC a trap or trajectory for Sri Lanka?

Mar 10 (CT) Three days after the armed conflict in the island of Sri Lanka came to a bloody end, the UN Secretary General visited parts of the war zone. At the end of his visit he told the media, “I have traveled around the world and visited similar places, but this is by far the most appalling scenes I have seen.” In a joint statement with the President of Sri Lanka, he also underlined the importance of an accountability process for addressing violations of International Humanitarian Law more..

Playing a double game

Mar 10 (CT) Many articles and editorials have been written on the National Medicinal Drug Policy (NMDP), which has seen a long delay in its implementation, perhaps due to the authorities conniving with, or giving into the pressure brought on them by the drug mafia to keep the policy unimplemented, despite the relief it would have brought to the poor people of the country. Many excuses for its non-implementation such as the draft being misplaced at Legal Draftsman's Dept more..

If cattle slaughter is banned...

Mar 10 (CT) Imagine a scenario where no one in the country would be allowed to slaughter a cow. With religious fervour firing the imagination of many to call for such a ban, this could very likely be the scenario in the near future. The issue here however is not religious and more to do with basic economics. With govt announcing its vision to be self sufficient in milk production by 2016, the local dairy industry is geared up for more..

Sri Lanka stocks close weaker

Mar 10 (LBO) Stocks close 0.14% lower Monday with Sri Lanka Telecom and John Keells losing ground. All Share Price Index closed 8.45 points lower at 5,957.61 down 0.14%. The S&P SL20 closed 7.30 points higher at 3,252.29, up 0.22%. Turnover was 304.30 million rupees, up from 233.28 million rupees last Friday with 64 stocks close positive against 93 negative. Foreign investors bought 149.04 million rupees worth shares while selling 116.48 million rupees of shares. more..

CEA meets carbon free Siripada pilgrimage

Mar 10 (Island) Central Environmental Authority (CEA) has taken an initiative with the assistance of eight other state run institutions and the private sector to make this year’s annual Siripada Pilgrim Season a carbon free event especially considering the area’s sensitive environment. CEA Director General Dr. Saranga Alahapperuma said that their recent survey had shown that on average a Sri Lankan visits a place of religious worship 30 times a year and their focus was to ensure more..

'US Senate split on Lankan issue'

Mar 10 (CG) Govt says it sees a split in the US senate over the human rights issue with two resolutions already submitted to the Senate both in support of and against Sri Lanka. Minister Dinesh Gunawardena said that the split was seen after eleven Senators supported Sri Lanka recently through a resolution while eight others had submitted a separate resolution to the Senate against the island. more..

Sri Lanka rupee steady for second day

Mar 10 (Reuters) The Sri Lankan rupee ended steady on Monday as dollar inflows from inward remittances and bank sales offset importer dollar demand, but seasonal demand for imports is expected to weigh on the local currency, dealers said. The spot rupee ended unchanged at 130.55/57 per dollar. The currency has risen 0.37% in the last eight sessions through Monday. The rupee has been on a rising trend since Feb. 27 amid weak demand for dollars from importers, dealers said. more..

Premajayanth’s pitch for renewable energy gets backing from IEA study

Mar 10 (Island) In the wake of Environment and Renewable Energy Minister Susil Premajayanth making a strong pitch for renewable energy, the International Energy Agency (IEA) in its latest report says the integration of large amounts of renewable energy can be achieved by any country at only a small increase on whole-system costs, compared with the current fossil-fuel-heavy electricity systems. Minister said that with climate change and other human made disasters, more..

G.K. Vasan calls on PM to take up Tamil fishermens' issue with Sri Lanka

Mar 10 (ANI) Union Minister G. K. Vasan on Monday urged PM Manmohan Singh to make efforts for the release of fishermen arrested by the Sri Lankan govt after the success of talks between the two govts. Last week, Sri Lanka's navy arrested 32 Indian fishermen for allegedly fishing illegally in their territorial waters less than two months after the two neighbours agreed to work together to resolve the issue. more..

Bhanwari to take Tamils' plight to North

Mar 10 (ENS) Bhanwari Devi’s eyes welled up with tears but she quickly wiped them away, after hearing probably for the first time about the war crimes and human rights violations in Sri Lanka. Bhanwari was here on Sunday when she met with the representatives of People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) who briefed her about the genocide in the island nation. After meeting with them, Bhanwari told presspersons that Sri Lankan govt has to be a protector of its citizens but more..