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SL debt trapped in US-China clashes

Jul 31 (ST) Former US Prez Donald Trump infamously set the world on fire regularly with his middle-of-the-night tweets, and ambassadors have often tried emulating him, rubbing the host country to which they are accredited on the wrong side. One of these envoys received an unexpected rejoinder from the Prez this week, and she soon recoiled to set the record straight and re-focus on bilateral relations. Last week’s unwarranted muscling of protesters near Prez Secretariat seems to have made several more..

'I want my State, not Ranil’s ministerial positions'

Jul 31 (SO) In response to a then-PM Ranil Wickremesinghe’s remark seven years ago in Parliament that Wimal Weerawansa was responsible for former Prez Mahinda Rajapaksa’s defeat in the 2015 Prez election, former minister Weerawansa responded then: If that was the case Wickremesinghe should consider him as a friend. However, he had no intention of becoming a political friend of Wickremesinghe. MP Weerawansa, more..

Presidential dilemma: Find fuel or face protests

Jul 31 (CT) President Ranil Wickremesinghe might be feeling satisfied over his two recent accomplishments which have eluded him ever since he became UNP leader after 1994. First, a seemingly secure majority in parliament and, second, an intriguingly evolving and mutually supportive relationship with the military. At the same time, Mr. Wickremesinghe finds himself in circumstances that none of his predecessors have ever encountered. more..

Govt plays terrorism card; opposition slams state terror

Jul 31 (ST) The need to protect the country from terrorism was repeatedly cited as the Govt argued on behalf of the proclamation of the State of Emergency (SoE) issued by then Acting President Ranil Wickremesinghe. The proclamation, issued under the Public Security Ordinance, was passed by Parliament on Wednesday (27) by a majority of 57 votes. The proclamation, gazetted on July 18, had to be approved by Parliament within 14 days if it were not to lapse. more..

'There seems to be no real direction as a country'

Jul 31 (ST) SL needs to act decisively to introduce economic reforms and bring about a comprehensive restructure to come out of the economic crisis and avoid another one down the road, asserts SJB MP Dr. Harsha de Silva. According to the Opposition MP, the Govt needs to form an all-party interim govt quickly and communicate to the people and the international community a genuine desire to bring economic reforms. more..

Time for unity

Jul 31 (SO) Prez Ranil Wickremesinghe has given priority to the restoration of law and order, which was sadly lacking during the past few months as protesters took the upper hand. Prez Wickremesinghe has made it clear that while the Govt upholds the right to freedom of protest, all such activities should be peaceful. In other words, there would be no room for violence against the State and its representatives. It is in this context that legal action is being taken against who caused more..

Generational wisdom to the fore?

Jul 31 (ST) My dear Dinesh, I have to write to you to congratulate you on your appointment as PM, although it was in less-than-ideal circumstances. In fact, your appointment was sudden and quite unexpected: Your govt was so unpopular that its leader was chased away, but still, you get to become the PM! That is not to say that you don’t deserve the job. You are one of the few who has stood on one side of the political divide for decades without much to show for it. more..

අන්තරේ සොයා සිවිල් ඇඳුමෙන් සැරසිලා මැරකල්ලි

Royal crush Thomians to keep Mustangs Trophy

Jul 31 (ST) Royalist Sadisha Rajapaksha stroked an unfinished and match-winning knock of 69, guiding his school to a thumping 8-wicket win at the 45th Mustangs Trophy encounter last evening at SSC grounds. Played before a few hundred schoolboys, the Royal-Thomian finally returned to the conventional conditions of playing in the presence of spectators. Royal, the defending champions of the 50-over version, returning after a gap of a few years due to Covid-19, were always unbothered more..

COPE loses hope; reports end up as gallery talk or in Parliament library

Jul 31 (ST) When the news of Parliament being prorogued was announced on Thursday, some members of the COPE were surprised by its timing. The reason–they were planning to hold daily sittings for the next two weeks on SL’s economic crisis and the role of those who played important decision-making roles during the past two years. In June, COPE summoned the CB’s former Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal, more..

Twisting the aragalaya into what it is not

Jul 31 (Island) Most analyses approach the crisis in SL through the lens of human rights, democratic governance, and accountability. Many of them pin the blame on personalities and parties. Not surprisingly, the narrative has shifted over the last few months. From demonising the Rajapaksas, commentators and analysts now fault Prez Wickremesinghe for the country’s problems. More than anything else, they accuse him of trying to harness or tame protesters, citing the raid more..

Rejected stone becomes corner stone

Jul 31 (Island) Jesus’ teachings nearly 2000 years after his death still are highly relevant and we see living examples daily. This week we witnessed one such in sports when Prabath Jayasuriya spun Sri Lanka to a famous victory over Pakistan. Jesus had taught when a man rejects someone that necessarily doesn’t have to be the right decision. At times, the rejected stone can go onto become the cornerstone. Last year Prabath had been exiled with questions cast over his fitness. more..

රනිල්ටත් එච්චර තමා

Big match blues and a firebrand Joe who lit up school cricket

Jul 31 (SO) 143rd Battle of the Blues between Royal College and S. Thomas’ College ended in a tame draw at the SSC ground last week. Thus, almost all key big matches were concluded, but with only the Battle of the Maroons between Ananda and Nalanda producing a result. S. Thomas’ lost five early wickets but late fight backs by Senesh Hettiarachchi (55) and Charuka Peiris (51) helped them to make 242 in 106.2 overs. Gishan Balasooriya (3/56), Sandesh Ramanayake (2/16) & Ramiru Perera (2/36) more..

Caught in politics, squash champ pours her heart out after Commonwealth Games snub

Jul 31 (SO) Sri Lanka’s current women’s number one squash exponent Fathoum Zaleeha Issadeen became the darling of sports fans on social media when photos of her wearing the scarf worn by Muslim women went viral after winning a bronze medal in squash at the 2019 South Asian Games (SAG). Displaying unwavering loyalty to Sri Lanka, she not only became a celebrity but walked the talk to be crowned as the undisputed squash queen three years ago. more..

RW-SLPP honeymoon hit by Hobson’s choice as Indo-China clash over...

Jul 31 (TM) UNP and SLPP are currently in a honeymoon phase, with the UNP’s Ranil Wickremesinghe occupying the office of Executive Prez and SLPP MP Dinesh Gunawardena being appointed PM. However, the path to political stability and economic recovery for this new couple is a rocky path full of potholes, creating doubts over the duration of this new match. In addition to issues of political and economic stability, more..

Plea bargain helps Jaliya to get off lightly

Jul 31 (Island) Rogue ambassador Jaliya Wickramasuriya, first cousin of Mahinda, Gotabaya, Basil and Chamal Rajapaksa, has got off lightly in a Washington court where he, on a plea bargain, pleaded guilty to wire fraud and escaped with a fine of USD 5,000 and five years probation. The very light sentence was because he had pleaded guilty to the charge and returned the money he had defrauded from the SL taxpayer in purchasing a new building for Colombo’s Embassy in a posh more..

Breaking the cycle

Jul 31 (TM) From the people’s perspective, Ranil Wickremesinghe has long been perceived as the other side of Rajapaksa coin and his performance to date since attaining the highest office has only contributed to strengthening that perception. Hence, as far as the people are concerned, they only seem to be getting more of the same they fought to put an end to. Being well aware of this, the gambit now appears to be to subdue opposition to the regime through blatant intimidation, more..

Case filed by Hamilton Reserve Bank: Clifford Chance seeks extension for SL

Jul 31 (TM) Legal advisor for SL’s debt restructuring programme, Clifford Chance, has sought a 30-day extension of the pretrial conference fixed for 26 Aug on the case filed against SL by the Hamilton Reserve Bank in a letter dated 26 July 2022. In the letter, the legal advisor has noted that, given that a 60-day period is usually granted for a foreign state to respond to a case filed, the 30-day extension being sought will give more..

Abeykoon targets semi-final spot in Birmingham

Jul 31 (ST) 24 years after Sriyani Kulawansa and Sugath Thilakaratne won silver and bronze medals at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, SL’s new foster boy Yupun Abeykoon kicks off SL’s campaign tomorrow at the 22nd Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England carrying the hopes of a 22 million people. He will be in action at 15.10 SL time in the Men’s 100m event. Abeykoon, based in Italy, has made vast strides in recent months, becoming first South Asian more..

KJP’s Manager Ravi De Silva responds to SLC presser

Jul 31 (TM) SLC issued a press release on 25 July explaining its side of the story regarding the alleged refusal of SLC to fund Kusal Janith Perera’s shoulder surgery to be performed in the UK. The press release went on to highlight that SLC had informed the cricketer that it had agreed to pay a major portion of the medical expenses despite Kusal Janith Perera going against SLC’s Medical Unit’s advice and opting to delay his 12-week rehabilitation programme earlier by playing in LPL 2021. more..

Video: Soft liquor licences to be issued to SLTDA-registered establishments

Jul 31 (AD) The govt has given the approval to issue soft liquor licenses to all hotels and restaurants registered with the SLTDA, or tourist establishments located in areas identified by the authority, with a view to boosting the country’s tourism sector. Approval was granted by Prez Ranil Wickremesinghe, effective from July 28, in his capacity as the Minister of Finance, Economic Stability and National Policies, pursuant to powers vested in him under Article 25, more..

Foreign assistance: US pledges $ 32 m for crisis-hit communities

Jul 31 (TM) The US has pledged to provide $ 32 million in new assistance for SL communities most affected by the ongoing crisis. The pledge for assistance has been made by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a congratulatory letter sent to Foreign Minister Ali Sabry PC, who took over duties of his office last week, Foreign Ministry sources said. “I look forward to working with you, President Wickremesinghe, and your Cabinet colleagues through this challenging time in Sri Lanka. more..

Govt awaits debt restructuring firms’ advice to deal with China

Jul 31 (TM) With the IMF urging SL to commence discussions on restructuring its debt with bilateral lender China, the Treasury states that Govt of SL (GoSL) is awaiting advice from its legal and financial advisors to do so. A senior Treasury official said that this would depend on the advisors devising possible strategies as it was only then that SL could engage with its creditors. Official noted that the Govt had already appointed more..

Return of Glyphosate for plantations, ban lifted

Jul 31 (ST) Glyphosate, a key weed killer required in producing Ceylon Tea to the world, is now staging a comeback as Cabinet approval was granted last month to lift the ban for the next three years for use on plantations alone. But the gazette is still pending and authorities are uncertain whether the state has cash to import it. Cabinet approval was granted on June 20 to lift the existing ban on Glyphosate to apply it on tea and rubber plantations and also for coconut and sugar cane requirements, more..