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Lankan military to release all civilian lands by 2018, UNHRC told

June 30 (ENS) Minister Mangala Samaraweera, told the UNHRC in Geneva, that the Lankan armed forces will release, by 2018, all lands they had seized from civilians during the 30 year war. “Last week the military released another 701 acres of land to the District Secretary of Jaffna, out of which, 201.3 acres were handed over to their original owners on 25th June. Govt has clearly instructed the military that all the land obtained from civilians must be released latest by 2018, more..

Famous St. Anthony’s statue stolen

June 30 (Island) The famous statue of St. Anthony in the Dalupotha Church in Negombo has been stolen in the early morning on Wednesday. The renowned statue was used for the blessing of devotees for several decades. CCTV camera recordings show that a person entering the church around 1am and breaking the structure and removing the statue. Church leaders suspect that the statue was stolen to take away the gold chains on it. more..

Health Ministry mulling import of anti-dengue vaccine

June 30 (DN) Health Ministry is now trying to find out whether it is possible to import the vaccine against dengue, Denvaxia to be used in Sri Lanka. A French company produces Denvaxia which has been used since 2015 in countries such as Mexico, Brazil, The Philippines, Colombia etc. Those countries have been using the vaccine with successful results. Consultant Physician Dr. Udaya Relapanawa said they will find out whether Sri Lanka has adequate funds to import this vaccine more..

SE University out of bounds to 291

June 30 (CT) All 2nd Year Management and Commerce Faculty students have been suspended and barred from entering the premises of the South Eastern University. "University premises is made Out of bounds for all 291 second year students of the Faculty of Management and Commerce from 27June, until further notice, following the untoward ragging of first year students," Registrar said. It was alleged that the 2nd year students of the Faculty were obstructing more..

Russia says hands off Sri Lanka; US and others want more progress

June 30 (CG) Russia told the international community to keep its hands off Sri Lanka as the Govt looks to address the accountability issue on the war. Russian delegation at the UNHRC said that Sri Lanka should be allowed to address its domestic affairs without outside interference. However several other countries, including the US, Britain, Norway, Ghana and Macedonia said that Sri Lanka must show more progress on its commitments. The statements were made after the UN High Commissioner more..

‘Silence on sexual offences in conflict zones deafening’

June 30 (Hindu) Despite an increase in the incidence of mass sexual violence, there has been a growing, deepening silence on how sexual violence has been used as a weapon of war even as ample supporting evidence exists, said Urvashi Butalia, founder of Zubaan at the Madras Institute of Developmental Studies (MIDS). She was speaking about Sexual Violence and Impunity in South Asia, a study coordinated by Zubaan and supported by the International Development Research Centre more..

COPE to fast track bond issue probe

June 30 (DN) COPE yesterday unanimously accepting the Auditor General’s report, decided to fast track the investigations on CB Treasury Bonds controversy based on it. COPE member and JVP MP Dr. Nalinda Jayatissa said the AG handed over copies of a concise report to all members when the COPE met at the Parliamentary Complex for a special meeting. However, some COPE members were also of the view that the report submitted by AG to the Committee should more..

Eastern CM’s snubbing of Naval Officer: SC refuses to grant leave to petition

June 30 (FT) Supreme Court yesterday refused to grant leave to proceed with the Fundamental Rights violation petition filed against the Eastern Province Chief Minister as well as the President concerning the incident where the Chief Minister had allegedly snubbed a Naval Officer at a school function at Sampoor. The bench comprising Chief Justice K. Sripavan and Justices Priyantha Jayawardane and Prasanna S. Jayawardane was of the view that the Petitioner has no locus standi more..

Gammanpila challenges his arrest; SC reserves order on his petition

June 30 (FT) Supreme Court yesterday reserved its order on the Fundamental Rights petition filed by Udaya Gammanpila challenging the decision to arrest and detain him on the alleged charges of fraud and forgery of documents to a foreigner The Bench comprising Chief Justice K. Sripavan and Justice Upaly Abeyrathne directed the parties to submit their Written Submission on or before Friday. Petitioner cited Special Investigation Unit (SIU) Inspector M.D.C.P. Gunathilake, more..

JO rejects UNHRC call for military reform

June 30 (FT) Joint Opposition vehemently denied UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Al Hussein’s annual report recommendation to restructure the tri forces and security units in Sri Lanka, to prosecute alleged war crimes and investigate the alleged use of cluster bombs. Former Minister G.L. Peiris said Hussein’s report was not just to provide directions and was the direct result of the Govt’s decision to co-sponsor the UNHRC resolution in September. more..

Private sector needs to be ready for trade policy changes: CCC Chairman

June 30 (DN) The private sector needs to be prepared for trade policy changes that are set to take place and better information and insight will ensure that the private sector contribution to policy formation and trade agreement negotiations will be based on the understanding of the real values of the issues, re-elected Ceylon Chamber of Commerce Chairman, Samantha Ranathunga said. “With the focus of the govt on improving the investment climate and trade liberalisation, we see more..

Ministry transfers Yala Warden to WLCD Head Office

June 30 (DM) Suranga Ratnayake, Warden of Yala National Park has been transferred to the Wildlife Conservation Department's (WLCD) Head Office in Battaramulla with effect from today. Suranga Ratnayake was reported to have been harassed after he revealed to the media how political pressure was exerted on him and WLCD Director General Dr. Sumith Pilapitiya, causing the latter to resign. In a Daily Mirror article regarding the resignation of Suranga Ratnayake claimed that more..

AG faults CBSL chief

June 30 (Island) The govt will announce today the successor to Governor of the Central Bank Arjuna Mahendran, who is under a cloud. Mahendran’s term expires today. Speculation was rife yesterday that President Maithripala Sirisena would appoint an acting Governor by last evening. However, a discussion between President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe at the Central Bank Governor’s office yesterday ended inconclusively. more..

Sangakkara names his All Time XI

June 30 (DN) Iconic batsman Sachin Tendulkar did not find a place in Kumar Sangakkara's list of all-time XI while Rahul Dravid was the lone Indian in the team selected by the former SL skipper. Sangakkara believes Dravid, who is currently India A coach, will be the best to complement Mathews Hayden in the opening slot in the squad led by former SL batsman Aravinda de Silva. "Mathew Hayden will be at the top of the order facing the first ball and to complement him, I have got Rahul Dravid," more..

Navy arrests 9 local fishermen engaged in illegal fishing

June 30 (SLN) Naval personnel attached to Northern Naval Command arrested 9 local fishermen engaged in illegal fishing activities in two separate incidents yesterday (27). 3 persons who were harvesting sea cucumbers in the seas off Point Pedro, were apprehended by naval personnel attached to SLNS Uththara, located in Kankesanthurai. During the raid, a dinghy, 929 sea cucumbers, 10 oxygen cylinders, 2 diving masks, 2 pairs of diving fins were taken into naval custody. more..

'Prime Minister is after me'

June 30 (FT) The PM is after me, claims MP Mahindananda Aluthgamage. The former Sports Minister says Premier Wickremesinghe is intimidating him on a personal level following his involvement in matters with regard to the Central Bank Governor and the Minister of Finance. “He (Wickremesinghe) is enraged that I was very active in both these cases. He is on a personal mission to shut my mouth,” Aluthgamage charged, in an interview with the Daily FT. more..

Japanese vehicle prices go up with Yen

June 30 (DM) Imported Japanese made vehicle prices would be increased again due to the currency rate increment of the Japanese Yen, Chairman of Sri Lanka Vehicle Importers' Association Mahinda Sarathchandra said. “The exchange rate of the Japanese Yen had increased by 1.45 compared to the Sri Lankan Rupee. As a result the price of vehicles imported from Japan would be increased in a price range of Rs. 300,000 to 400,000,” he said. He said prices of motor cars, jeeps and vans would be increased. more..

18-year-old Chamal breaks record clears 16 metre barrier

June 30 (Island) Asian Youth Championship medalist Chamal Kumarasiri of D.S. Senanayake College, Meerigama matched country's best triple jump performance so far this year at any level when he cleared the 16 metre barrier in the Under-19 triple jump on day two of the Western Province Schools Athletics Championship at Diyagama on Wednesday. The 18-year-old trained by H.W. Suresh Kumara (Sports Officer of Meerigama) cleared 16.07 metres, a personal best, in his final attempt to more..

The guess the Governor game!

June 30 (FT) President Sirisena announced from his official Twitter account yesterday that a new Central Bank Governor would be appointed over the next few hours, ending weeks of suspense and political deadlock about the potential reappointment of the controversial incumbent, Arjuna Mahendran. But the announcement only sparked more drama and hectic guessing games, as social media and political circles buzzed with speculation about the new appointee more..

Sri Lanka smell the coffee

June 30 (CI) Sri Lanka had clearly resolved to try and push England a bit harder on a ground known for high scores but good intentions were no match for Jonny Bairstow's quick reactions in the second over. Danushka Gunathilaka dropped the ball down into the covers and immediately called his partner, Kusal Perera, through for one. Bairstow was far quicker off the mark - though Perera's running line was slightly obstructed by the bowler, Chris Woakes - and his scampering more..

Roy's 162 and England's second-highest successful chase

June 30 (CI) 1: Number of higher successful run-chases for England in ODIs than 308 in this match. Last year, they chased 350 against NZ. This was only their fifth win chasing targets of 300 or more. In the last ODI at The Oval, England lost by 13 runs chasing 379 runs in 46 overs (D/L method) against NZ. 162: Jason Roy's score in this match - second-highest by a England player in ODIs. He missed on breaking Robin Smith's record of 167 not out, against Australia in 1993, by six runs. more..

Roy's rampant 162 sets up stunning chase

June 30 (CI) Jason Roy lit up a gloomy evening in South London with a stunning matchwinning 162 - the second highest ODI score ever made by an England batsman - as Sri Lanka's best batting performance of the series was handed an inferiority complex by a relentless display of hard, clean hitting, allied to the sort of sharp running between the wickets that their own players couldn't come close to emulating. Chasing a stiff D/L-adjusted target of 308 in 42 overs, more..

Avoiding needless panic over Brexit

June 30 (Island) The entirely unexpected happened and the British in a deeply polarizing referendum voted to leave the European Union by a margin of 52% to 48%. Voting to leave were seemingly older voters and most of England and Wales, while, younger voters, Metropolitan London and overwhelmingly Scotland voted to remain. British PM David Cameron immediately announced his intention of stepping down at the Conservative Party’s annual conference due in October, while there is also pressure on more..

Editorial: Hussein’s bombshell

June 30 (Island) Caressing one’s face before slapping it is a popular saying here. United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Al-Hussein has done just that to the Sri Lankan govt. In his report to the current session of the UNHRC, the other day, he paid some compliments to the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe administration and even described its engagement with his outfit as positive and constructive before delivering a slap. more..


Where from here, Wigneswaran’s language lament?

June 30 (SL) For all the criticism heaped on him thus far on the post-war ethnic concerns and attendant political calculus and calculations, Northern Province Tamil Chief Minister, Justice C. V. Wigneswaran, has to be congratulated – and thanked – for his recent utterances on the language front. Tamil-Sinhala linguistic discrimination had fuelled the post-Independence ethnic division, war and violence in the country. A product of socio-economic, political bias all this, more..

Price controls can’t control prices

June 30 (SL) Today, consumer prices are skyrocketing and rising in an unbelievable manner according to the whims and fancies of the importers, manufacturers and the traders passing on an unbearable burden to the consumers who have no voice but have to humbly accept the behest of the merchant class. It seems that controlling of prices of essential goods is under the authority of those traders and manufacturers associated with importing and selling consumer goods rather than more..

'BREXIT: Govt backed wrong horse'

June 30 (CT) Joint Opposition leader MP Dinesh Gunawardena shares his thoughts on the RTI, Audit Bill, BREXIT and Provincial Councils. He feels the govt will not be able to handle the economic repercussions of the United Kingdom voting to leave the European Union (EU) adding that 'by supporting their conservative friends abroad the govt had neglected securing the interests of Sri Lanka. He stressed that the government should hold discussions with the Opposition, more..

Frustration Leads to Aggression in Citizens

June 30 (DM) An unidentified gunman opened fire at a prisoner who was being taken back to jail after a court case in a high security zone. Another incident took place where a woman had been shot dead outside the prison headquarters in Borella. The most recent killing was opposite Mahara court premises. There are similar incidents where men, women and children had been killed,wounded, raped etc. due to lawlessness throughout the country. President in a speech prior to election had said: more..

We have lost our collective conscience

June 30 (DM) The manner in which the world media is covering significant events, the twists and turns it renders to the core substance of a major event and the preordained definitions it ascribes to the personalities and communities who generate these events are way beyond comprehension. Whether it’s the so-called free media of the West or state-controlled media in closed societies such as the Middle East, North Korea and Cuba or even an open society like India, more..

How does Govt. spend your money?

June 30 (SO) Do you, as a citizen of this Republic, know exactly what govts do with your money – that you provide to the State through direct and indirect taxes? At long last, Sri Lankan legislators have passed into law a Bill that gives the citizens the Right to Information about what Govt, from top to bottom, does with public funds in the name of the citizens. The Right to Information (RTI) Bill presented and passed in Parliament last week, more..

Submission to Consultation Task Force on reconciliation mechanisms

june 30 (GV) Groundviews, along with Maatram and Vikalpa, were invited to present submissions to a Sectoral Meeting of the Consultation Task Force on Reconciliation Mechanisms, held at the SL Foundation Institution on 28 June. The invitation from the Consultations Task Force (CTF) laid out the framework for the submission and also had a helpful FAQ to guide our understanding of what was expected. As noted in the FAQ, the consultations will focus on mechanisms to more..

Moolai Hospital Jaffna – Reaching for new vistas

june 30 (CT) Plumbing new ground, embracing bold initiatives, sustaining effort amidst adversities and bouncing back even after grave situations, have remained a hallmark of the Jaffna man’s attributes. The vicissitudes of Moolai Hospital epitomize these characteristics. Commenced in 1935 as the first Cooperative Hospital in the country, it developed at high speed attracting attention of medical professionals, drawing a multitude of patients from the North and prospering as well. more..

Govt denies claims of delaying tactics in war probe

June 29 (CG) Govt today denied claims that it was adopting a delaying tactic in the investigations over incidents related to the war. Minister Mangala Samaraweera told the UNHRC today that consultations were taking place with all stake holders in the accountability and reconciliation process. “Reconciliation does not happen at once, overnight. It requires effort, hard work, commitment, & careful, continuous, concrete action. more..

EU calls for international participation in accountability process

June 29 (CG) European Union (EU) today called on the Sri Lankan Govt to ensure international participation in the accountability process related to the war. The EU made the statement at the 32nd session of the UNHRC in Geneva today. Roderick Van Schreven, the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of the Netherlands said that Sri Lanka is still at the beginning of a long process. “Much remains to be done to fulfil the commitments it has made at this Council and more..

UN Secretary General Ban ki-moon to visit Sri Lanka this year

June 29 (CG) UN Secretary General Ban ki-moon is to visit Sri Lanka this year, Minister Mangala Samaraweera said. He made this announcement during the 32nd session of the UNHRC in Geneva today. Samaraweera told the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein that Sri Lanka is now open to the world and engages with the international community with courage and confidence. “We were also pleased to receive you, High Commissioner, in Feb; more..

 Sri Lanka in England