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UNP says not had talks with the TNA

Oct 17 (CG) UNP says it has not had any talks with the TNA as claimed by some Govt members. UNP MP Kabir Hashim said there is an attempt to give the impression the UNP has reached a deal with the TNA which could be seen as unpatriotic. The UNP MP said that his party has not reached any deal with the TNA, nor will it agree to any conditions by any political party. Hashim said that in order to form a coalition ahead of next Presidential elections, UNP is in talks with several leading political parties more..

Envoy asks Germany to teach our workers

Oct 17 (DM) Sri Lankan Ambassador in Germany Karunatilaka Amunugama had requested Germany to assist Sri Lanka in upgrading the skill levels of our workers as Germany had an advanced system of technical education. Ambassador Amunugama met Hans Joachim Fuchtel, the State Secretary at the Economic Cooperation and Development Ministry of Germany in Berlin recently. Ambassador stated that Sri Lanka has a huge gap between demand and supply of skilled and professional labour. more..

Malaysia's EXIM Bank ready to invest US$ 500m in Sri Lanka

Oct 17 (Xinhua) Export-Import Bank of Malaysia (EXIM Malaysia) is willing to invest US$ 500 million in Sri Lanka, and is evaluating infrastructure, IT and energy related ventures, an official said here Friday. EXIM Bank believes other investors from Malaysia are also interested in investing in roads and infrastructure which is the Sri Lankan govt's main aim, but is also keen in developing island's manufacturing industry more..

Millions of Euros in LTTE accounts for Rajapaksas - Mangala

Oct 17 (SM) Allowing the European Court of Justice (ECJ) to annul the EU regulations proscribing the LTTE is more of a 'deliberate action' of the Rajapaksa regime rather than the carelessness of the Ministry of External Affairs, former External Affairs minister - Mangala Samaraweera says. He was replying to queries over the controversial ECJ ruling announced last evening. MP Samaraweera has said, "It was I who took measures that lead to the LTTE being proscribed in the EU. more..

Harin appointed UNP deputy organiser

Oct 17 (CG) Opposition UNP Uva Provincial Council member Harin Fernando has been appointed as the Deputy national organiser of the UNP. The decision was taken when a special UNP committee of the UNP Leadership Council, appointed to prepare for the next election, convened today at the party headquarters, UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe said in a statement. Fernando topped the preferential votes at the Uva Provincial Council elections, securing 173,993 votes. more..

Five-judge SC bench to hear Vaas appeal

Oct 17 (DM) A Supreme Court Bench comprising Chief Justice Mohan Pieris and Justices Eva Wanasundera, Sarath De Abrew, Sisira De Abrew and Buwaneka Aluvihare today fixed Oct 21 to hear the appeals submitted by the accused remanded in connection with the killing of Mohamed Shiyam. The accused -- Vaas Gunawardena, Krishantha Koralage, Lakmina Bamunusinghe, Priyantha Sanjeewa, more..

U.S. trade delegation discuss business training, partnerships for Sri Lankan women

Oct 17 (USE) Assistant U.S. Trade Representative Michael Delaney speaks with Neela Marikkar, Chairperson from The Grant Group, to discuss the launch of the “War Widows Project” in partnership with the Ministry for Industry & Commerce. The project is supported through nearly 15 million Sri Lankan Rupees from the US to open handloom training centers and entrepreneurship training for widows in Mannar and Mullaitivu. Two of the centers were opened in May 2013, more..

Thousands of war-disabled live below poverty line – TNA

Oct 17 (CT) Over 7,000 war-disabled persons in the Kilinochchi District undergo great hardship in the absence of a means to earn a living, TNA MP, S. Sritharan, said. "These people even lack the means to be self-employed," he added. "Some of these persons live below the poverty line and receive insufficient relief from the authorities. Some of these disabled persons are breadwinners but have no proper means of employment to gain sustenance for themselves. more..

UN tells Lanka to focus on disparities

Oct 17 (CG) UN today noted significant achievements Sri Lanka has made in terms of Human Development and acknowledged that Sri Lanka is well placed to address its current set of development challenges. UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in SL, Subinay Nandy said that Sri Lanka needs to focus on human development disparities as Sri Lanka builds on the strong foundation to more..

FNO slams Ranil for supporting 13A

Oct 17 (CT) Federation of National Organizations (FNO) slammed the govt for not abolishing the 13th Amendment and for fostering a culture of political opportunism in the post war period. FNO whilst calling the local govt system a frivolous 'white elephant,' also accused the TNA and the SLMC of being separatist political organizations putting pressure on the govt. TNA, it said, is especially exerting pressure through India by demanding autonomy and the right to self rule. more..

Sri Lanka Pakistan friendship association endeavors to bridge digital divide for SL

Oct 17 (AM) Sri Lanka Pakistan Friendship Association organized a special ceremony at the High Commission of Pakistan in Sri Lanka to present state of the art Computer Tablets to several bright Sri Lankan University Students. The selected students hailed from Medical, Law, Business and Finance faculties of different universities of Sri Lanka. The High Commissioner of Pakistan in Sri Lanka HE Maj. Gen(R) Qasim Qureshi graced the event as the Chief Guest. more..

25 years of ICRC work in Sri Lanka

Enter Mossad and Ravi Jayewardene

Oct 18 (CT) As for the Israeli engagement and what it entailed, much valuable information is obtainable from By Way of Deception by Viktor Ostrovsky and Claire Hoy, which was published in 1990, and the proceedings and report of the Mossad Commission in this country the following year, provoked by the same book. The book was written by the Canadian journalist Claire Hoy on the basis of information Ostrovsky had gathered while serving in the Israeli intelligence Mossad from 1983 to 1986, more..

Five ways Rajapaksas hijacked parliament

Oct 18 (CT) The composition of Parliament today is not what voters intended it to be in 2010. By allowing cross-overs, the voter’s primary choice – his or her choice of party – has been denied. This is because Sri Lanka has a proportional system of representation. This means that the number of seats a party obtains is roughly proportionate to the number of votes it obtains in elections. However, the executive and the courts have distorted this principle, and thus the public’s will. more..

NOC chief discloses strategy to win medals

Oct 18 (SO) President of the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka Hemasiri Fernando said that the authorities must pay serious attention on Sri Lanka contingent’s pathetic performance at the recently concluded 17th Asian Games in South Korea and prepare a strategy to regain SL’s lost prestige in Asian Games. Fernando’s call comes after Sri Lanka’s dismal performance at the 45-nation Games, winning two medals in cricket more..

Can Yal Devi's success offset ECJ verdict?

Oct 18 (CT) European Union Court of Justice (ECJ) in Luxemburg delivered a landmark verdict on Thursday to annul the restrictive measures taken against the LTTE. The Luxemburg ECJ verdict was delivered a day after the Sri Lankan Govt introduced restrictive measures by compelling the expatriate Tamils to register themselves with the Defence Ministry and obtain passes to travel to the Northern Province. President Rajapaksa was greeted with a grand reception when he arrived at more..

People's Choice stands at the end

Oct 18 (CT) President Rajapaksa commenced his three-day visit to North by visiting Kilinochchi on 12 Oct. That was an eventful day to the people of Kilinochchi. President mentioned in his speech that he was very happy to see the vast changes that have taken place since April 2009 up to Oct 2014. Many development activities have taken place at the right time. It has happened at a more rapid phase. Relief packages: This was one of the most important events that took place in Kilinochchi. more..

FSP plan talks on a common candidate

Oct 18 (CT) Q: Is Kumar Gunaratnam planning on returning to Sri Lanka? A: It is not decided according to our wish. There are a number of legal and political obstacles against the repatriation of our leader Kumar Gunaratnam. We try to overcome them and bring him back. Such obstacles violate the rights of a political activist who engaged in politics in Sri Lanka. Q: But, he has engaged in illegal activities. A: These problems do not more..

Where is Laura Davies looking ?

Oct 18 (NS) UK’s Deputy High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Laura Davies is a lady on the move. It’s all official of course, although in an age where diplomats double up as spies we don’t really need to place too much value on ‘official’ claims. Still, there’s no denying that she moves around. She’s gone to the East. From Arugam Bay to Trincomalee, through Pottuvil, Oluvil, Kalmunai and Batticaloa, she says. And through it all, she’s been looking over her shoulder. more..

Leading by example

Oct 18 (NS) The magnificent cloud vessel carrying our ancients DS, DM and CWW crossed the Palk Strait with utmost ease. National boundaries could not stop those, who had now made the heavens their home. The cries of horror and anguish that had rocked the state of TN following the Chief Minister being sentenced over misappropriation could still be heard. And yet, the talk down below was less about the independence of the judiciary than about the fate of much loved ‘Amma’ Jayalalithaa Jeyaram. more..

The cheap company they keep!

Oct 18 (NS) We are all judged by the company we keep. The type of people you surround yourself with speaks volumes about your values and what you stand for. We have all heard of the concept of being guilty by association, the act of people associating your behaviour and thoughts with the people you hang out with. If one of your friends or associates acts in a negative way, you will be lumped in with him or her. more..

Editorial: Abusing thirsty critters

Oct 18 (Island) Humans call some animals pests and eliminate them. But, in reality, they themselves are the worst pests on this planet. They encroach on animal habitats in the name of development and kill critters for food or mere pleasure. Oscar Wilde it was who famously condemned the so-called gentry engaged in fox hunting as the unspeakable in pursuit of the uneatable. It has been reported that the Yala national park closed some time ago in view of a prolonged drought has more..

SL Muslims at the cross roads

Oct 18 (Island) I must insist on the importance of the fact that in Islamic animal sacrifice none of the meat is meant to go waste. This follows from the fact that Islam places a high value on reverence for life, including non-human life, which is why hunting for pleasure is forbidden – something that perhaps had to be expected in a religion that arose in a desert environment where non-human life was very scarce. Consequently even the wealthiest Muslims, in Sri Lanka and elsewhere, more..

Elphinstone to Gamini: What’s in a name?

Oct 18 (Island) It is easy to recall the quote from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar: "What’s in a name? That which we call a rose/ By any other name would smell as sweet." We seem to be increasingly obsessed with the changing of names, whether the new names have any relevance to a place or event, or not; and there is nothing sweet about this whole idea. The latest in this name change craze is the news that once more..

The singing policeman

Oct 18 (Island) For me, the most reliable index of a country’s Gross National Happiness is the amount of singing per capita its citizens indulge in. Please take note that I do not say the amount of music per capita they listen to; what I do say is that it is the "amount of singing per capita its citizens indulge in". ‘Why so?’ you may ask. Because listening to other people singing, however perfectly, is a form of passive enjoyment; it is the active enjoyment of singing, however flat, that generates happiness more..

Hidden treasures in the City of Gems

Oct 18 (ST) Mention Ratnapura and the first thing that comes to your mind is the incredible assortment of gems it is famed for. The ‘City of Gems’, just 90 km from Colombo is a perfect destination for our ‘All in a Day’ travel series which explores the lesser known attractions as well as the known. While the city’s narrow streets are abuzz with the gem merchants and buyers early in the morning, the day traveller who visits to the city, be it on business or leisure, will no doubt enjoy the scenic beauty more..

CB Chief stresses need for reshaping banking for changing times

Oct 18 (FT) Central Bank Governor Nivard Cabraal, who was the Chief Guest at the 26th anniversary convocation of Association of Professional Bankers – Sri Lanka, last night stressed the need for reshaping banking for changing times. He said that the theme of APB Convention was appropriate in the current juncture of Sri Lanka since many changes have taken place and were taking place. more..

Poverty and MDGs in Sri Lanka: What more needs to be done?

Oct 18 (CT) Poverty – a condition where people's basic needs for wellbeing are not being met - is a multidimensional issue that affects most, if not all, nations. Despite huge success in reducing poverty in many parts of the world, poverty remains a major development challenge and a multidimensional issue that affects many nations, In fact, in South Asia alone, 31% of the population is still living in poverty. Poverty is one dimension of development & is interlinked with many other dimensions. more..

SLIM-Nielsen spearheads first .Power of Research workshop

Oct 18 (Island) Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM) project committee for Peoples Awards 2015 together with Nielsen has taken strides in a new corporate direction to introduce the first ‘Power of Research’ workshop, extended to corporates to signify the importance of research. This workshop is anew initiative by the Peoples awards project committee with the objective of taking the Peoples Awards 2015 to the next level by building a new property for the project; ‘Power of Research’ more..

People in Musali had faith in Govt. despite rampant bogus propaganda: Basil

Oct 18 (FT) Minister Basil Rajapaksa stated that Musali area can be regarded as an area which has a section of people who had unwavering faith in the Govt even when certain people were carrying out bogus propaganda against the Govt. He further stated that the Govt led by the President had taken steps to reconstruct roads, electricity, housing, schools, etc. in the Musali area, which had been destroyed by the terrorists, more..

Gas must be priced right, not politicized

Oct 18 (CT) Energy experts cautioned the State, to price gas finds in the Mannar Basin in a proper manner, so as to maximize economic benefits to the country and not allow political considerations to undermine the industry. Cairn India has discovered more than two trillion cubic feet of natural gas reserves on Sri Lanka's side of the Mannar Basin and high level discussions are ongoing to monetize the discovery. The Petroleum Resources Development Committee (PDRC) and more..

SL youth projects win World Bank grants

Oct 18 (ST) Two Sri Lankan nonprofits, Sri Lanka Anti-Narcotics Association (SLANA) and the Karuna Trust, were awarded grants from the World Bank and Microsoft, to finance development projects aimed at training youth to enhance their work through the use of coding and information technology. SLANA and the Karuna Trust were placed first and second respectively, from amongst over 70 proposals submitted for the annual grants project. more..

Young professionals should play active political role: UNP

Oct 18 (FT) WPC member and Chairman of UNP Young Professionals’ Organisation (YPO), Harshana Rajakaruna has emphasised on the need for young professionals to play an active political role in the country in a bid to pave the way for a good alternative govt. “The youth of this country is facing a dilemma under the current regime and it is time that we realised that we need to stand up against the breakdown of rule of law more..

NSC appalled at Govt., Muslim Ministers silence over BBS menace

Oct 18 (Island) National Shoora (Consultative) Council (NSC) said that it viewed with deep concern the announcement that BBS and the dreaded anti-Muslim 969 movement of Myanmar plan to work together in Sri Lanka. The announcement made by the two extremist groups following the BBS meeting held on Sept 28, in Colombo. That alliance did not augur well for the country the NSC said, adding that it can derail and undermine the process of nation building and reconciliation that more..

Fijian PM expresses gratitude to Sri Lanka

Oct 18 (AT) Rear Admiral J.V. Bainimarama, the newly elected Prime Minister of Fiji has acknowledged the immense debt Fiji owes to Sri Lanka, in his inaugural speech on 13th Oct 2014 at the Parliament House in Suva, following the convincing victory of his Fiji First Party at the general elections held last month, in which it secured 59.2% of the popular vote. In his address to the Parliament, Prime Minister Bainimarama, while thanking the members of the Fijian Judiciary, judges and more..

First-ever on-water Boat Show a success

Oct 18 (FT) Colombo’s latest international boat show, which featured an on-water boat display for the first time, concluded successfully after a three-day run on 12 Oct. “We have been talking about five hubs. Today there are two major milestones taking place at this event – the promotion of the maritime hub as well as our tourism,” said EDB Chairman and CEO Bandula Egodage, addressing inauguration event of Boatshow more..

Lions Clubs International President visits SL

Oct 18 (FT) International President of Lions Clubs International 2014/2015 Lion Joe Priston visited Sri Lanka recently. Lions Clubs International is the world’s largest service club organisation. In order to commemorate the International President’s visit, Lions of Sri Lanka from every region of all the districts, conducted community service projects. These projects covered humanitarian projects such as wheelchair and medical equipment donations, vision care, sight testing, distribution of more..

Patient not suffering from Ebola

Oct 18 (CT) Health Ministry's Epidemiology Unit Head, Dr Paba Palihawadana, scoffed at a claim made by the All Ceylon Nurses' Union (ACNU) that there is an Ebola case in Sri Lanka. "The suspected case was suffering from a viral disease. However it's not Ebola," Dr. Palihawadana said. She also said the patient is currently being treated at the Infectious Disease Hospital (IDH), Angoda. The patient is a Sri Lankan male, she added. However, he has been ruled out from suffering from Ebola, she said. more..

CAS to hear Manilal appeal on November 20

Oct 18 (DM) Sport’s highest court, Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) will hear the appeal of former Sri Lankan football administrator Manilal Fernando against his life ban for alleged corruption on Nov 20. CAS has listed Case bearing No. CAS 2014/A/3537-Manilal Fernando vs. FIFA for 20th Nov, months after Fernando sought CAS mediation to clear his name. Fernando, once a close associate of Mohamed bin Hammam was expelled more..

Severe weather warning issued today

Oct 18 (CG) The Early Warning Centre of the Department of Meteorology has issued a severe weather warning for the next 24 hours effective from 6.30 this morning. Department of Meteorology says under the disturbed atmospheric conditions over vicinity of Sri Lanka, showery weather can be expected to continue over the island and over the sea areas around the island. Showers or thundershowers will occur over most parts of the island particularly during afternoon & night. more..