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Give peace a chance- Jaffna Bishop

Jan 1 (TN) "In the dawning of the new year 2006, the Government of Sri Lanka, Liberation Tigers and all communities must resolve to give peace a chance," said Bishop of Jaffna, Thomas Saundaranayagam, in a new year message delivered Sunday in Jaffna. "Peace talks during the last year raised hopes but ended in disappointment to all. more..

Who is really trapped in the international safety net ?

Jan 1 (LS) Ranil Wickramasinghe created it, Chandrika Kumaranatunga approved it and Mahinda Rajapaksha embraced it, and now the Sri Lankan government is trapped in it. One of the main strategies former Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe proudly formulated was the establishment of the so called “international safety net” more..

Rajapakse sticks to stand on unitary state

Jan 1 (Dawn) President Mahinda Rajapakse has told the Indian government he would devolve power to the northeastern region in an attempt to find a political solution to the Tamil issue, but reiterated his resolve to do so only within the framework of a unitary state. more..

MDMK cautions Centre against defence pact with Sri Lanka

Jan 1 (ANI) The Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) has cautioned the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government against entering into any defence pact with Sri Lanka, saying President Mahinda Rajapakse might "use it to unleash violence against Tamils". more..

The Indian Illusion

Jan 1 (AT) It is important to understand the parameters. India is anti-Tiger bur she is also anti-Sinhala supremacist. India does not want to see a separate Tamil country come into being in the North East of Sri Lanka; but she also wants a solution to the ethnic problem based on power sharing between the majority Sinhalese and the minority Tamils. more..

Dr. Swamy cautions Mahinda Rajapakse not to delay promised unilateral implementation of quasi–Federal constitution

Jan 1 (AT) Dr. Subramanian Swamy, Leader of the India’s Janata Party, while welcoming the joint statement issued by the Government of India and Sri lanka at the conclusion of Mahinda Rajapakse’s visit to India, more..

Can the Co-Chairs handle the new Sri Lankan realities?

Jan 1 (AT) The reply sent by Ms. Benita Ferrero-Waldner,EU Commissioner for External Affairs, to the pro-LTTE Tamils in Europe demonstrates a decisive shift in the attitude of the international community to the LTTE. In it she drives home some telling facts to the Tamils who petitioned the EU objecting to the travel ban imposed on the LTTE on September 26. more..

Erik Solheim unwelcome in Sri Lanka

Jan 1 (AT) Government of Norway must come forward to remove immediately Erik Solheim from having any role in the peace process between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, it has been strongly urged. more..

JVP Up In Arms Against Dalai Lama

Jan 1 (ISL) The Marxists Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna is leading a major campaign against the visit of most Ven. Dalai Lama to Sri Lanka, according to sources from foreign ministry. The leader of the JVP, Somawansa Amarasinghe and several other JVP leaders had already started a campaign against his visit to the foreign ministry. more..

2000 rupee note cancelled due to Amunugama's signature

Jan 1 (LeN) The Central Bank has delayed the circulation of the new 2000 rupee note as it has been signed by former Finance Minister Dr, Sarath Amunugama, Central bank sources said. The release of the 2000 rupee not has been suspended as Treasury officials have informed the President that his signature should be placed in the note as the current Finance Minister more..

Defense Ministry's double talk on ban

Jan 1 (LeN) Despite claims by the Defense Ministry that foreigners and foreign representatives of non-governmental organizations could enter LTTE held areas without Defense Ministry's approval, not a single foreign national had entered Tiger held areas from the Omanthai military checkpoint from Monday (26) to Wednesday (28). more..

Elle thera said "Kaluwa's story"

Jan 1 (LeN) Venerable Elle Gunawansa thera, the most prominent figure of the Patriotic People's Movement has distanced himself fro the activities of the Movement in recent times. When 'Lanka e News' queried the thera about his decision, he said he is opposed to the politicizing of national movements. more..

JVP-Hela Urumaya blaming others useless now- Kabir hashim

Jan 1 (LeN) The year 2005 will enter into history as a year people were deceived, former Higher Education Minister Kabir Hashim said in a statement issued on behalf of the United National Party. more..

Benign Parliamentarian from Batticaloa

Jan 1 (TW) Joseph Pararajasingham is the latest in a long line of Parliamentarians done to death by political violence in Sri Lanka. The 71 year old Politician was shot dead within the hallowed precincts of the St. Mary's Cathedral in Batticaloa at 1.10 am on Christmas day. more..

Differentiate between ethnic and separatist conflicts for effective peace efforts

Jan 1 (TW) President Mahinda Rajapakse at a meeting with Parliamentarians of the TNA held at Temple Trees on December 21 is reported to have given them an assurance that “he will consider the North East Problem in an innovative spirit and dedicate himself in the search for a new path for a solution”. more..

Lanka wants new EU leader to act against LTTE terrorism

Jan 1 (ANN) Sri Lanka expects the new EU leader Austria to proscribe the LTTE for brazenly violating the Oslo-arranged Cease-Fire Agreement regardless of the EU warning following the assassination of Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar last August. Austria takes over the EU leadership today (Jan 1) from the UK. more..

Media culture & responsibilities of stake-holders

Jan 1 (ANN) Is the media a blessing or a curse? The question sounds very much like an O' Level essay topic. It is certainly something that has been discussed over and over again, not just in school essays or inter-school debating competitions but in more mature and serious forums as well. more..

Special government delegation off to Jaffna to settle the crisis situation

Jan 1 (LT) President Mahinda Rajapaksha has decided a send a special delegation to Jaffna to look into the turbulent situation that has erupted in Jaffna peninsula between the Army and the Tigers organization and propose any remedies accordingly. more..

Crisis in the UNP

Jan 1 (LT) UNP revisionist group led by Rajithe Senaratne, Ravi Karunanayake, Dharmadasa Banda, Mahinda Wijesekera, Susanthe Punchinilame has been disconcerted over an attempt by Party Chairman Malik Samarawickrema trying to call district organizations of the party to discuss re-construction more..

A political motive behind Dalai Lama's tour in Sri Lanka

Jan 1 (LT) Information received by the Foreign Ministry of Sri Lanka reveal that there are attempts to mar the diplomatic goodwill between Sri Lanka and China by the chief of the Maha Bodhi Association, Rev. Banagala Upathissa Theo and several other prelates arranging for Dalai Lama, considered as a spiritual leader in Tibet, to tour Sri Lanka in 2006. more..

Conduct of Rohitha Bogollagama in India-inquiry from president

Jan 1 (LT) The President is reportedly distressed about Minister Rohitha Bogollagama staying at another hotel at government expense in the recent tout in India of the government delegation headed by president Mahinda Rajapaksha. more..

Indo-Lanka statement does not favour LTTE: MDMK

Jan 1 (ID) The Indo-Sri Lanka joint statement issued at the conclusion of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse's visit to India is "biased against the LTTE," MDMK Chief Vaiko said here today. more..

Donors want new powers for AG

Jan 1 (SAMN) Bowing to strong donor pressure, the government has agreed to arm the Auditor General’s (AG) Department with sweeping powers—including the authority to disclose information to the media if individuals or state institutions do not comply with their directives. more..

JVP determined to stay out of govt

Jan 1 (SAMN) The JVP would not consider joining government ranks in any capacity as it would be a further burden to the taxpayer, a party senior said yesterday.The Marxist party has rejected President Mahinda Rajapakse’s overtures in this regard. more..

Realities of buffer zones

Jan 1 (SAMN) A full year after declaring inflexible buffer zones along much of the country’s coast, the government has released new reduced setback measurements—after learning the hard way that there just isn’t enough land to relocate thousands of people. more..

Defence Chief ordered to declare assets

Jan 1 (LNP) The Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption has called for the assets declaration of Admiral Daya Sandagiri, former Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy and now Chief of Defence Staff. The move, The Sunday Times learns, is pursuant to an inquiry the Commission is now conducting in respect of allegations levelled against Admiral Sandagiri. more..

CBK gets Rs. 300 ml. deed despite AG`s advice

Jan 1 (LNP) Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga has been handed over the deed of transfer of the one and a half acres of state land near the Parliament complex at Madiwela worth over Rs.300 million, on a free grant by the Urban Development Authority during her tenure in office ignoring an opinion of the Attorney General which says that such land can only be alienated `for an urban development purpose`. more..

Peace making no one-man show

Jan 1 (LNP) Erik Solheim is reported to have said he would step down as facilitator in Sri Lanka`s peace process. A new team is expected to be appointed by the Norwegian government to play that role. These reports are not officially confirmed but have received wide publicity and we have some peaceniks beating their chests and pulling their hair, unable to bear the `sad` tidings. more..

Sri Lanka batting under scrutiny

Jan 1 (BBC) Sri Lanka captain Marvan Atapattu offered no excuses following his side's defeat by New Zealand in Queenstown. They lost by seven wickets after being bowled out for just 164 in the first of four one-day internationals. more..

Sanctions threat on LTTE

Jan 1 (SO) The International Community will further impose sanctions on the LTTE if they continue with violence, a Foreign Ministry senior official told the Sunday Observer yesterday. more..

Suspected Tamil Tiger rebels abduct member of rival Tamil group

Jan 1 (AFP) Sri Lanka could slide back into civil war early in the New Year unless the government and Tamil Tiger rebels agree to meet face-to-face and save their fragile truce, according to analysts and mediators. more..

Sri Lanka detains 50 for questioning after massive hunt for rebels

Jan 1 (AFP) Sri Lankan police have said 50 people have been detained for questioning out of more than 900 rounded up during massive house-to-house searches in the capital for suspected Tamil Tiger rebels. more..

Sri Lanka detains 50 for questioning after massive hunt for rebels

Jan 1 (AFP) Sri Lankan police have said 50 people have been detained for questioning out of more than 900 rounded up during massive house-to-house searches in the capital for suspected Tamil Tiger rebels. more..

Talks key to halting Sri Lanka's slide to full-scale war

Jan 1 (AFP) Sri Lanka could slide back into civil war early in the New Year unless the government and Tamil Tiger rebels agree to meet face-to-face and save their fragile truce, according to analysts and mediators. more..

Yahoo Photos

Jan 1 (Reuters) A novice Buddhist monk holds a candle while praying for peace during a candle light ceremony organised by the National Movement of Peace at Independent Square in Colombo, more..

Desperate Tamil rebels snatch village children to serve as footsoldiers

Jan 2 (AT) Wearing a filthy batik sarong, a man lies snoring outside a shabeen, his hair matted with red dust, his nose a collage of broken veins. Inside the tin-roofed shack, a dozen Tamil men are just visible, their faces stupefied by toddy, alcohol distilled from the spiky Palmyra leaves and sipped from cracked clay bowls. more..

Masks and puppet makers seek more tourist arrivals

Jan 2 (AT) The puppet manufacturing handicraft, considered a state of art during the late 1900 in Sri Lanka. But today it is businesses which generates and bring in millions in foreign exchange into the country. "We need more tourist arrivals to expand our business" said Bandrananda Wijesuriya, a puppet lover and large scale mask producer, more..

Locations for the country's second and third coal plants identified

Jan 2 (AT) While groundwork on the country's first ever coal power plant is yet to take off, locations for the country's second and third coal power plants have already been identified. Highly placed sources said that the Indian Government has shown interest in setting up the country's second coal power plant in Trincomalee more..

President Mahinda Rajapakse a key target: Balasingham threatens use of "special weapons"

Jan 2 (AT) Intelligence reports reveal that the Tamil Tigers who are on the verge of launching their Eelam War IV have three main objectives: 1) to capture Jaffna; 2) create panick in Colombo by hitting economically strategic targets; and 3) target the newly elected President Mahinda Rajapakse. more..

LTTE, SLMM meet in Sampoor

Jan 2 (TN) Mr.S.Elilan, Trincomalee district political head of the LTTE Sunday at a two-hour discussion held at LTTE district political secretariat in Sampoor at 10 a.m. with Mr. Arthur Tveiten, head of the SLMM based in Trincomalee, more..

102 families seek safer areas outside Jaffna, Campus to reopen

Jan 2 (TN) Following escalating violence and disruption to normal life by the activities of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) in the Jaffna district, one hundred and two families have travelled through the Muhamalai checkpoints from Jaffna to safer areas in Vanni and other districts taking their belongings, more..

Sri Lanka appoints special panel to probe northern violence

Jan 2 (Xinhua) A special presidential panel has been appointed to look into the incidents of violence which gripped the country's Northern Province during December, a state television news broadcast here said Sunday. more..

President calls for national unity

Jan 2 (Xinhua) President Mahinda Rajapakse has called for national unity in order to overcome problems and challenges left unresolved over several decades. Rajapakse said Sunday in a New Year's Day speech that he would face the challenges and find solutions to all problems in the coming year. more..

LTTE Encourages Examination Frauds In Vanni

Jan 2 (ISL) Sources from uncleared areas claim that the LTTE had given strict orders to the GCE O/L examination supervisors to assist students during the examiniation. “The LTTE asked us to help students with their answers when they raise their hands” said a supervisor from Vanni who spoke to our Vavuniya correspondent. more..

Tamils Speak On Arrests In Colombo… Blast Police and LTTE

Jan 2 (ISL) Several Tamil students, private and public sector workers and housewives who spoke with The Independent expressed their displeasure on the recent arrests made in Colombo as well as the activities of the Tamil Tigers in Colombo. “Police should not think that all Tamils are LTTE. more..

Sri Lanka deal sliding

Jan 2 (ANN) There is a cease-fire between the Sri Lankan government and the separatist LTTE. But you wouldn't know it, judging by conditions on the ground. In late December, a land mine attack left 12 soldiers dead. The same day, a police officer was killed while on patrol. Both incidents were blamed on the LTTE. more..

SriLankan Airlines wins coveted Galileo Indian Express award

Jan 2 (ANN) SriLankan Airlines, the largest foreign carrier in India, won the coveted Galileo Indian Express Award for the Best Eastbound International Airline for the years 2004-05. SriLankan was selected ahead of Singapore Airlines, Malaysian Airlines, Air India, and Indian Airlines, more..

Defense Ministry's double talk on ban

Jan 2 (LeN) Despite claims by the Defense Ministry that foreigners and foreign representatives of non-governmental organizations could enter LTTE held areas without Defense Ministry's approval, not a single foreign national had entered Tiger held areas from the Omanthai military checkpoint from Monday (26) to Wednesday (28). more..

LTTE is an anti-India force

Jan 2 (Hindu) President Mahinda Rajapakse's visit to India has reaffirmed the cordial relations and natural bonds between close neighbours. The visit came at a difficult time for Colombo. The ceasefire between the Government and the LTTE has never looked more threatened. more..

Norway to hold talks with Govt. and LTTE for new framework

Jan 2 (PIS) Norwegian Minister for International Development and former special peace envoy Erik Solheim, will himself appoint a new peace envoy after consulting the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE when he visits the country later this month. more..