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Police unearth 17 safe houses for bombers

May 16 (AN) National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ), which was responsible for the Easter Sunday bomb attacks, had been running 17 safe houses and seven training centers for the suicide bombers, Ruwan Gunasekera, a police spokesman, said. He said NTJ, along with two other organizations, had been proscribed by an extraordinary govt gazette notification issued in Colombo on a directive from Prez Sirisena. more..

Satyagraha at Vihara Maha Devi

May 16 (CT) A satyagraha is to be held today (16) at 2 p.m. at the Vihara Maha Devi Park to show opposition to the State. The statement announcing the protest action read, “On Easter Sunday we were struck by a senseless, cruel terror attack, and we are still grieving and healing as a country. Adding to this tragedy, violent anti-Muslim mobs have taken to the streets and are wreaking havoc. It is very clear the State has failed us. We cannot afford to fail one another. more..

'97% of Zahran’s gang already arrested'

May 16 (AD) One group of persons is behind the unrest in Kuliyapitiya, Naththandiya and Minuwangoda, says Acting Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene. He said the nine suspects, who were arrested at the copper factory in Wellampitiya and released on bail afterwards, will be rearrested if the decision to grant them has made any error. He said 95-97% of the suspects in connection with Zahran’s group have already been arrested. more..

Anti-Muslim violence were organised attacks

May 16 (FT) Culprits of the anti-Muslim violence have been identified, and action will be taken against those responsible for organised attacks launched in several locations in the North Western Province, Minister Navin Dissanayaka said. The attacks, which Dissanayake claimed were organised and systematically carried out in several locations, were carried out by people brought from outside. more..

Army probes into alleged video footage of soldier supporting mob attackers

May 16 (FT) Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has commenced a probe into the alleged video footage where a person in military uniform was supporting mob attackers in Thummodara on last Monday. The video footage, which shows a uniformed man with the mob attackers, has first published by the Colombo Telegraph and is now going viral on social media. Overall Operational Commander Maj. Gen. Sathyapriya Liyanage said that a team of officials has been appointed to investigate allegation. more..

Video: Kingsbury bomber’s aide wanted by police arrested

May 16 (AD) The police have arrested a wanted suspect who had allegedly assisted the suicide bomber at the Kingsbury Hotel to purchase a white-coloured van, used by the bomber at St. Anthony’s Church in Kochchikade to arrive at the location. CID had carried out extensive investigations into this van in question and managed to find out links between Mohamed Assam Mubarak, the bomber at the Kingsbury Hotel, and another person to who had aided Mubarak to purchase the vehicle more..

Speaker to receive No-Confidence Motion against Bathiudeen today

May 16 (FT) JO MPs will today handover a No-Confidence Motion against Minister Rishad Bathiudeen to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya. MPs backing Opposition Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa, along with MP Ven. Athuraliye Rathana, decided to bring a No-Confidence Motion against Minister Bathiudeen following the Easter Sunday attacks. Following a discussion with Rajapaksa, JO MPs had decided to present the No-Confidence Motion more..

Hotels, airlines finalise special offers to woo tourists

May 16 (FT) Hotels and airlines yesterday held another round of discussions to finalise special offers to woo tourists as part of industry revival efforts following the aftermath of the Easter Sunday terror attacks. A host of offers were shared and discussed, and a final decision on collective effort will be made next week with the SL Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA), SL Conventions Bureau (SLCB), and SL Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLPB) undertaking their responsibilities more..

UNWTO calls on global community to support Sri Lanka tourism

May 16 (DN) Secretary General of the UNWTO called on the global community to offer its unwavering support to Sri Lanka through Tourism at this critical moment noting that hotels, beaches and other sites of interests are open as usual. In a video message published at SL Tourism Development Authority Official Facebook page, the Secretary-General of the UN’s World Tourism Organization Zurab Pololikashvili states the following, “I have had the privilege of seeing Sri Lanka emerge as more..

MR unhappy with govt

May 16 (FT) Opposition Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said he remained dissatisfied with the steps taken by the Govt following the Easter Sunday attacks, but is ready to support meaningful decisions. A short statement released by the Opposition Leader’s office said the Opposition Leader could do little other than expressing his views to the public both within and outside Parliament. But it was up to the Govt to more..

Sri Lanka to attract USD 1 mn business from Japan IT sector

May 16 (DN) Sri Lankan ICT,BPM delegation at Japan IT Week expects to attract USD 1 mn worth of business by end of 2019. In addition, few companies are expecting to sign joint ventures with leading Japanese companies in the ICT/BPM sector in the near future. With Govt of Sri Lanka’s continuous efforts to drive economy through digital adaptation and innovation, SL Export Development Board organized Sri Lankan ICT/BPM delegation has successfully concluded the participation at more..

Central Bank extends restrictions on The Finance Co

May 16 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s Central Bank has decided to extend the regulatory action currently in place on The Finance Company for another three months, in order to consider the business restructuring proposal submitted by the company. Monetary Board of the Central Bank initiated a number of regulatory actions, as temporary measures, on The Finance Company with effect from 15th Feb 2019, with a view to safeguard the interests of the depositors and other stakeholders of the company. more..

JVP Press Conference

Stafford Int'l School rejects baseless accusations circulating social media

May 16 (FT) Stafford International School, Colombo 7 categorically rejected accusations spawning from an image circulating on WhatsApp and social media platforms claiming its teachers were posting Islamophobic comments on social media. The management asserted that the mentioned teachers on these images were not employees of Stafford International School in Sri Lanka nor were they affiliated with the school. The institution further stated that Stafford Int'l School located in more..

CTC net profits up 8.7% to Rs 4.06B

May 16 (CT) Profits at Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC (CTC), a unit of British American Tobacco grew 8.7 per cent in the March 2018 quarter year-on-year (YoY) to Rs 4.06 billion, aided by a slight decline in Govt levies (-5.6%), operating expenses (-9.5%) and an increase in net interest income (+22.4%). Meanwhile, the company accepted the resignation of Michael Koest from its Board of Directors and CEO/MD with effect from 15 May 2019 and appointed Nedal Salem to replace him, both more..

Manufacturing drops to all-time low in April

May 16 (FT) Manufacturing activities contracted, recording the all-time low index value of 41.0 in April 2019 with a decline of 25.9 index points from March 2019, CB said. The decline of manufacturing PMI is mainly driven by the significant drop in New Orders and Production, especially in manufacturing of food, beverages and tobacco and manufacturing of textiles, wearing apparels, leather and related activities products. more..

HNB launches its own digital wallet and payment app, Solo eWallet

May 16 (LBO) Laying the foundation for a comprehensive digital payment ecosystem in Sri Lanka, the country’s most innovative bank, Hatton National Bank PLC, announced the launch of its own digital wallet and payment app, HNB Solo. Providing users with complete freedom in digital payments, Solo is designed to empower – enabling complete flexibility to handle any transaction anywhere whether it be purchasing from an established retail franchise or even a small stall or 3-wheeler. more..

Sampath Bank’s net interest income up by 23% in Q 1 2019

May 16 (Island) Sampath Bank reported a net interest income of Rs. 10.2 Bn for Q1 2019 reflecting a noteworthy growth of 23.2% over the figure reported in Q1 2018, a significant achievement given the challenging economic conditions that prevailed throughout the period. The bank recorded a profit after tax of Rs. 2.2 Bn, a negative growth over the corresponding period in 2018, due to several factors including higher impairment provisions, volatile interest rates, currency uncertainty and more..

Bathiudeen visits riot-hit areas in NWP

May 16 (FT) Eyewitnesses and residents in the areas that were affected by violence in the North Western Province told Minister Rishad Bathiudeen that large groups of people carried out the attacks in a well-organised manner. During his observation tour to the Province, Minister was also informed by scores of victims that members of some mobs were dressed in identical colours & rode motorbikes or arrived in buses more..

Edtorial: Extremists and imbeciles

May 16 (Island) SL has had to combat terrorism again as the tenth anniversary of its victory over the LTTE draws near. Current threats to national security emanate from some bloodthirsty barbarians within the Muslim and Sinhala communities. National Thowheed Jamaath (NTJ) destroyed nearly 250 lives in the name of their macabre cause, and the extremists in the majority community have unleashed mindless terror against Muslims in some areas during last few days. more..

Despite Poverty, there is peace and happiness in Auroville

May 16 (Island) This is my final article on Auroville, and let me give you some facts and figures on the place. The population of Auroville is approximately 2,550 with 52 nationalities residing. Residents aged above 18 are 1,900 and below are 650, with 1,080 Indians among them. The area owned by Auroville is 4,942 acres and its settlements encompass about 2,100 acres. It has 10 schools with 550 students and Auroville outreach schools boast some 800 students. more..

මේ ගිනි තැබීම ජාත්යාලය නිසාමද??

Watch the happenings at elections

May 16 (DM) Fortune smiles on Sri Lanka again. While corruption abounds the political class - luck holds for the people, maybe for their goodness, overcomes the impurities associated with the lust of politicians? How long will good fortune rain on this thrice blessed land: Will it last long amidst the foulness felled by politicians. Most of the Moors including the extremists voted for SLMC or UNP as the alternate force. UNP is prepared to sit in the opposition and have sat for a while too long, more..

5/13 clash: To quench whose thirst?

May 16 (DN) More than three weeks after the Easter bomb blasts which killed over two hundred and fifty people, Sri Lanka faces a different challenge: the prospect of a backlash against the Muslim community with potentially serious consequences if this trend spreads countrywide. This week, clashes were reported mostly in the North Western Province and in Minuwangoda. Several shops, houses and religious places were damaged when mobs attacked them and set them on fire. more..

Media dissuaded from covering search ops to curb fear and xenophobia

May 16 (SO) The Govt last week moved to prohibit security forces from taking news media cameras on search operations around the country in the wake of the Easter Sunday bombings that killed 258 people. For weeks, the news cycle has been dominated by SMS alerts and sustained nightly news bulletins that feature 10 minute segments on the day’s search operations by security forces and police. more..

Easter Sunday bombings: Prez says a few active members involved still at large

May 16 (CT) We are looking for terrorists, but do we know them? No, we don’t know them -“they are with tentacles and rotting skin, the kind a seven-year-old might be able to wrap his mind around – they were monsters with human faces, in crisp uniforms, marching in lockstep, so banal you don’t recognise them for what they are until it’s, too late.” This is the lesson given in other countries that have faced a similar problem. However, Govt in its pursuit of so-called monsters, may itself become a more..

Fell into a well at night – Fell into the same at daytime

May 16 (CT) We are back to square one. The die is cast and Sri Lankans have once more shown that the inherent latent base tribal instincts are alive. None of the moderate, enlightened and a humane voice is heard, other than within the converted. When Robert Knox said the Cingalese are a cunning lot who mistake the low-level cunning they possess to be a high level of Intelligence, he was not wrong by far. Easter Sunday attacks by terrorists are three weeks away. more..

'21/4 could easily have been averted complacency kills'

May 16 (CT) Rev. Father Prasad Harshan says that from the Prez downwards, PM, and Opposition Leader, including all of the other people’s representatives, should think more about the country and the people than their petty politics. Q: Just as we were trying to raise our heads as a country, following the end to the 30-year internecine war, we are now faced with fresh turmoil and a nation in agony. How could this have happened? more..

An island now hoping for the best

May 16 (DM) Going by the recent spate of violence in certain areas in Wayamba and western Provinces one is left to think whether Sri Lankans truly value peace. There is an old saying which comes to my mind at this juncture, you need two people to start a fight. The people of this nation have time and again showed the will to take sides and fight; for very petty reasons at times. Sri Lankans have fought many wars in the past and the mother of all wars was the battle against the ruthless LTTE. more..

Where will it all end?

May 16 (CT) As if Easter Sunday 2019 wasn’t bad enough, we had a response that was stereotypical of the JR Jayewardene era where the racist hounds of hell were unleashed on a segment of the population whose only crime was that they belonged to the same community as a handful of terrorists. Yankee Dick was responsible for a massive relocation of SL Tamils to such places as Canada, the US and the antipodes where they have contributed to those parts of the world far out of proportion to more..

Sri Lanka situation under control after anti-Muslim riots

May 15 (AFP) Sri Lankan authorities said Wednesday they had the situation under control after mosques and Muslim-owned shops and businesses were targeted in a violent backlash after the Easter Sunday terror attacks. A second overnight curfew imposed nationwide ensured there was no repeat of Monday's violence against Muslims, who make up some 10% of Sri Lanka's population of 21 million. more..

President on imperative need to defeat terrorism and religious extremism

May 15 (AD) President Maithripala Sirisena says that it is important to work cooperatively among the nations while facing the terrorism which has been sprung by international terrorism, and religious extremism. He made these comments while delivering his speech at the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations held today in Bejing, China. “My country lives in freedom & peace, without posing any threat more..

Establish new Security Council including Prez, PM and Opposition Leader: Champika

May 15 (DN) A new Security Council that includes the President, the PM and the Leader of the Opposition should be established to counter the prevailing tense situation in the country, Minister Champika Ranawaka yesterday said. This Security Council could become the one voice that communicates with the international community on defense and security matters, Ranawaka also said. Minister Ranawaka also pointed out more..

Easter Sunday attacks: Cardinal rejects TNA’s interpretation

May 15 (Island) Archbishop of Colombo Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith, yesterday, rejected TNA claim that the failure on the part of successive govts to address the grievances of minorities over the past several decades had led to the Easter Sunday carnage. Nearly 260, including almost 50 foreigners perished in coordinated attacks carried out by Muslim youth on April 21. Approximately 500 others suffered injuries. more..

Awaken your collective strength: Speaker urges Sri Lankans

May 15 (DN) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya yesterday urged all Sri Lankans to awaken the collective strength of the peace-loving people against the acts of racial and religious hatred. “I address you today as the Speaker of Parliament and as a responsible elderly person who loves this country, not as a politician”. “These incidents did not take place in the first horror of terrorist attacks, when people were hurting and grieving. more..

NTJ received over Rs.1000 mn from three foreign countries: Champika

May 15 (DN) The National Thowheeth Jamaath (NTJ) has received over Rs.1000 million as funds from three foreign countries over the last few months, Minister Champika Ranawaka said. According to him, the NTJ has received the said amount of funds from Sept 2018 onwards. Minister pointed out that there are many supportive and offensive stages in terrorist groups and all these stages should be eliminated more..