Uncovering the Mystery of a Sri Lankan Journalist’s Death

28th September 2016 // 0 Comments

Lasantha Wickrematunge’s body will be exhumed years after he wrote a column saying the government would kill him. Before they came to kill him, Lasantha Wickrematunge wrote a 2,500-word story about how he was glad to be labeled a traitor, and happy to join the ranks of Sri Lanka’s dead journalists. Wickrematunge was killed as the country’s decades-long civil war neared its final months. For much of the 25-year fight between the government and Tamil Tiger separatists, Wickrematunge criticized the government for killing its own citizens, and he founded the country’s most anti-establishment newspaper, The Sunday Leader (It’s tagline:“unbowed and unafraid”). In 2009, gunmen on a motorcycle killed Wickrematunge on his way to work. In a column published three days after his death, Wickrematunge spoke […]

Govt. to present evidence against LTTE being removed from terrorist list

28th September 2016 // 0 Comments

The government will present evidence to thwart attempts being made to get the LTTE removed from the European Union’s list of terrorist organisations. “We will tell the EU why it should keep the LTTE on the list of terrorist organisations. We will advance reasons to justify the decision to maintain the LTTE on the terrorist list,” Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said in New York last week on the sidelines of a media briefing by President Maithripala Sirisena at the auditorium of the Loews Regency. The Minister said so when asked to comment on Lankan government’s plans against a top EU lawyer last Thursday arguing that the LTTE should be removed from the EU’s list of terrorist organizations because procedural mistakes invalidated the decision to include […]

Failure Of The NPC Would Spell Medium & Long-Term Disaster

28th September 2016 // 0 Comments

By Vishwamithra1984 – “I am of old and young, of the foolish as much as the wise, Regardless of others, ever regardful of others, Maternal as well as paternal, a child as well as a man, Stuffed with the stuff that is course, and stuffed with the stuff that is fine, one of the nation, of many nations, the smallest the same and the largest” ~ Walt Whitman, Song of Myself ‘It has merely been a talk shop with resolutions and statements. Its notorious genocide resolution a month after regime change in Colombo last year, apparently passed to mobilize international actors, in effect polarized the country and undermined the new political space for reconciliation. The sad reality is that the NPC has lost its credibility with […]

CID identifies Dharmaratnam Sivaram’s killers

28th September 2016 // 0 Comments

The CID has now received strong leads to identify the killers of Tamil journalist, ‘Tamilnet’ editor Dharmaratnam Sivaram alias Taraki, who was abducted by four persons in a white van near Bambalapitiya police station on 28 April 2005 and whose dead body was found from Kimbula Ela near parliament on the following day, say police headquarters sources. White Van abduction was commonly done with the fullest support of Rajapaksha government to silence any one who opposes the government. The White Van abduction was used to kill leading Tamil politicians and Human rights workers. Millions of dollers were taken as ransoms on abducting Tamil and Muslim businessmen specially from diaspora visiting Sri Lanka, Gotha Rajapaksha was accused as the ring leader who made millions from White […]

Ezhuka Thamizh has sent sharp message to all corners: Fr Ravichandran

28th September 2016 // 0 Comments

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQicuaAMNmg [Tue, 27 Sep 2016, 18:36 GMT] The main message coming from the ‘Ezhuka Thamizh’ uprising, especially from the people, who participated in their thousands, was that Tamils on the ground were not prepared to compromise their collective demand for self-rule in a merged North-East, said Jaffna-based human rights and civil activist Rev. Fr. M.V.E. Ravichandran in a video interview to TamilNet on Monday. Tamils reject the unitary system and the message has now been conveyed clearly to all the corners, he said. “Tamils want to live as a People and they don’t want their cultural and national identity erased in any way. They are opposed to structural genocide,” the director of Jaffna Diocesan Catholic Youth Federation further said. Tamils should be given the right […]

Dear Mr. Obama, Please Lift The Ban On The LTTE

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

By Usha S Sri-Skanda Rajah – Usha S Sri-Skanda-Rajah Dear Mr. Obama, The continued, unfair and unjust labelling of the Tamil Tigers cannot stand. Please lift the ban on the LTTE. In the light of the opinion given by the advocate general to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) to remove the Tamil Tigers (LTTE) from the European Union’s (EU’s) terror list, I am appealing to you, to give credence to that advice and act – it should now be accepted the continued unfair and unjust labelling of the Tamil Tigers cannot stand. I draw your attention to three media reports – one from The Wall Street Journal, another from Reuters and the 3rd from the BBC that refer to the opinion of the advocate […]

“Ezhuga Tamizh” for greater devolution

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

The Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Tamil majority Northern Province, C.V.Wigneswaran, on Saturday gave a clarion call for a people’s movement to raise issues pertaining to the Tamil people and thereby strengthen the hands of their elected representatives. Speaking at the “Ezhuga Tamizh” (Tamils Arise) rally at Jaffna, Wigneswaran said that the problems of the Tamil people cannot be solved just by getting elected to parliament or the provincial councils. They can be solved only by a people’s movement. Elected representatives cannot deliver the goods unless backed by a peoples’ movement, he said. Wigneswaran said that he agreed to co-chair the Tamil People’s Council (TPC) because he saw the need for a non-partisan peoples’ forum to discuss and highlight the common problems of the Tamils. […]

War crimes: Our ole master speaks in two voices

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

Britain is at the forefront of a campaign to have Sri Lanka’s military prosecuted for what it insists were war crimes committed at the end of the war with the terrorist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. But when it comes to allegations against its own forces, the British Government is unapologetically defensive. The BBC quotes Prime Minister Theresa May as saying she will not allow an “industry of vexatious allegations” against UK troops over claims of abuse in Iraq. This is in response to an inquiry by the Iraq Historic Allegations Team (IHAT) which is examining serious reports following the 2003 invasion. The BBC says concerns have been raised over the “industrial scale” of claims lodge with IHAT supported by legal aid. “Mrs May said […]

Ms Ndiaye, Special Rapporteur’s visit sparks hope for the Tamils

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights announced that Ms Rita Izsák Ndiaye, UN Special Rapporteur on minority issues on problems faced by minorities in various countries, is to visit Sri Lanka from 10 to 20 October 2016. Her first three years term as the special Rapporteur started on 1st August 2011. She was given another three years on the same post in 2014. Ms Ndiaye got abundant experience on the plight of ethnic minorities in countries where the regimes are ruthless towards the minorities and care less about their humanitarian aspect of their life. I watched a u-tube presentation of Ms Rita Izsák-Ndiaye on 13 April, 2016 at an event at the UN headquarters in New York hosted by the Permanent Mission of […]

Neervely woman remanded over alleged child torture

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

A woman in Neervely, who was allegedly found torturing a six-year-old child in a video clip which was captured by a provincial journalist, was placed under remand custody after being produced before the Jaffna Magistrate’s Court. The woman was arrested after a complaint was lodged to police by the National Child Protection Authority after inspecting a video of the incident that is circulating on social media. Two children, in addition to the child in the video, were taken into police custody and was placed at the SOS Children’s Village in Nayanmarkatta. Meanwhile, an individual was arrested in the Wa Eliya area in Minuwangoda for allegedly assaulting his nine-year-old son. Police stated that the arrest was made based on a call that was received via the police emergency […]

434 new Mahinda scams under probe

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

The Anti-Corruption Secretariat (ACS) has received 434 complaints related to misappropriations of public funds amounting to billions of rupees during the tenure of the Mahinda Rajapaksha regime. ACS Director, Ananda Wijepala, said 317 complaints had already been submitted to the FCID for further investigation. He stated that of the remaining complaints, 28 had been submitted to the CID, 85 to the Bribery Commission and another seven to the IGP for further action. The majority of such misappropriations had taken place in institutions and companies attached to the State with several noted politicians of the previous Mahinda Rajapaksha regime being allegedly involved in such scams. Wijepala added that once the complaints are received by the ACS, each Case is examined by an official from the Attorney […]

Return of lands pivotal for resettling IDPs: National Policy

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

The Government has adopted a national policy on the war-displaced, which acknowledges that one of the major obstacles to providing them with durable solutions for a return to normal life, is occupation of land by the military and police. The policy calls on the Ministry of Defence to coordinate with the Ministry of Law and Order, to accurately map out all land that is or was owned, claimed or used by civilians, and is currently occupied by any of the three forces or police. These should be returned to civilian use and ownership urgently, unless the State determines that it is required for public purpose, it holds. Such purpose–be it national security or development–should be carefully scrutinised, including to ascertain whether no alternative land could […]

Maithri talks about reconciliation efforts as Wiggy calls Tamils to rise

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

President Maithripala Sirisena arrived at the John F. Kennedy Airport in New York amidst tight security as the city suffered a major security threat with an explosive device going off on the previous day injuring 29 persons, last Sunday (18). He was received at the Loews Regency Hotel by Minister of Foreign Affairs Mangala Samaraweera, Deputy Minister of Power and Renewable Energy, Ajith P. Perera, Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to UN, Dr. Rohan Perera, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador in Washington, Prasad Kariyawasam and other officials. Dr. Rohan Perera, speaking to media few minutes before the President’s arrival said that the visit of President Sirisena is of extreme importance to Sri Lanka as the 71st Session of the UNGA is dedicated to review the progress of the […]

Talented Jaffna Hindu College students at Colombo Ananda College………..

25th September 2016 // 0 Comments

Old Anandians as authors: From Emergency ’58 to Road to Nandikadal By Manekshaw Chief Justice K. Sripavan graced the annual prize giving of his alma mater, Jaffna Hindu College as the Chief Guest last Monday (19). Sripavan is the second Old Boy of Jaffna Hindu College to become the Chief Justice of Sri Lanka after late S. Sharvananda. Jaffna Hindu College being one of the premier educational institutions in the North, the school celebrated its 125th anniversary last year. Apart from Sripavan and late Sharvananda, Jaffna Hindu College has also produced several legal giants such as late Senator S .Nadesan QC and former Attorney General Siva Pasupathy. Not only in the legal fraternity even in the fields of engineering and medicine several leading figures in the […]

Uprising in Jaffna gains momentum

23rd September 2016 // 0 Comments

Mobilisation towards ‘Ezhuka Thamizh’ uprising in Jaffna gains momentum [Thu, 22 Sep 2016, 22:26 GMT] Grassroots organisations, academics and students of University of Jaffna, business community, religious leaders involved in civil activism and various political parties voicing for the rights of Eezham Tamils are extending their support to the public rally named ‘Ezhuka Thamizh’ (Let Tamil rise up) to take place in Jaffna on Saturday. Despite the deviatory sections of the TNA hierarchy, led by M.A. Sumanthiran and Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan, have been fully busy with causing obstacles to the move taken forward by the Tamil People’s Council (TPC), the mobilisation has gained support from the people on the ground, activists close to the organisers said. Full story >> Latest Reports: Sep 22 22:26     […]

Devolution of Political Power Is Essential- Minister Mano Ganeshan

23rd September 2016 // 0 Comments

National Co-existence Dialogue and Official Languages Minister Mano Ganeshan pointed out that need of devolution of political power in war hit Majority Buddhist Island.  “It is difficult to talk to Sinhalese people about devolution of political power. They have a fear about another ethnic war. But devolution of political power is essential.” Minister Ganeshan said at Symposium on ‘War to Peace.’ The Symposium was organized by People’s Association for Peace and Development (PAPD) held at the auditorium of SEDEC-Sri Lanka on International Peace day of September 21, 2016. He added, “Political power of the country has been limited to the privileged people in Colombo. It should go into village level.” Addressing the eighty participants including civil rights activists, academics, diplomats, war victims and clergy National […]

LTTE and Hamas to be Removed from EU “Terror List”

23rd September 2016 // 0 Comments

ECJ Advocate-General Eleanor Sharpston Citing Procedural Mistakes Wants LTTE and Hamas to be Removed from EU “Terror List” BRUSSELS: A top EU lawyer on Thursday said Islamist movement Hamas and Sri Lankan rebel group LTTE should be taken off the bloc’s terror list because procedural mistakes invalidated the decision to put them on it. The European Union imposed travel bans and asset freezes against Hamas and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam under 2001 rules. The groups subsequently contested being kept on the bloc’s terrorist black list. The General Court, second to the European Court of Justice, found in their favour in 2014 on the grounds the EU had based its decision on publicly available information, not on a finding by a competent authority. The […]

Dayan Jayatilleka misleading The Concepts Of Federalism & Secularism

23rd September 2016 // 0 Comments

By Surendra Ajit Rupasinghe – Surendra Ajit Rupasinghe It is simply amazing how the very mention of these concepts in an open discourse on constitutional reform would immediately trigger frenzied, robotic responses from learned professors and self-appointed pundits. The response from Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka to Madam Chandrika’s remarks on the subject is instinctual, political and vituperative, and deliberately distorted and misleading. Federalism His argument has three main points. First, that federalism inherently contains the element of separatism. This is empirically unsupported, as in classic examples such as the US, India, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland etc. Not perfect examples, but where there is some degree of social cohesion, in spite of severe national and ethnic oppression in some cases. The second aspect of the argument that Sri […]

The State Of Reconciliation

23rd September 2016 // 0 Comments

By S. I. Keethaponcalan – Dr. S. I. Keethaponcalan Despite the intensity of the ethnic conflict, reconciliation always remained an attractive scheme or slogan for many civil society actors and political figures in Sri Lanka. With the end of the war in 2009, reconciliation transformed into an integral part of the political discourse. Many believed that the termination of the LTTE, bestowed an opportunity to bring the hitherto divided communities together through political means. The government headed by President Rajapaksa, who defeated the LTTE, was keen on bringing the land together rather than the people. Leaders of the former government chose to intensify security measures and the restrictions on the Tamil people to achieve the goal of territorial integration. The Rajapaksa government also ignored the international […]

ISIS is conspiring to ‘invade’ Sri Lanka’

23rd September 2016 // 0 Comments

Sinhala racist trend has not ceased to exist and continues unabated, Their hate language is more akin to the Trumpian lobby in the US. By Mohamed Harees – Lukman Harees Listening to the video recording of Galagoda Atte Gnanasara (Thero)’s anti Muslim hate speech in South Korea, I began to realize how well he fits into the title of a ‘Modern Devadatta’. Devadatta tried to assassinate his cousin Buddha . However this modern Devadatta version in saffron robes has already killed the spirit of the message of peace enunciated by the Buddha. This racist bigot and lunatic suffers from a delusion of putting an end to the rise of Islam and the Muslims, even by being a Prabakaran and with political support. A wishful thinking indeed! Islam […]

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