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SLMC to demand EPC CM post

21st July 2014 // 0 Comments

By Rathindra KuruwitaThe Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) will demand that the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) hand over the chief ministerial position, of the Eastern Provincial Council to the SLMC as agreed prior to the election. SLMC General Secretary Hassan Ali said, the UPFA leaders agreed to hand over the position to the SLMC after two and a half years. Thus, the position needs to change hands by 2015. The SLMC won seven seats at the election held in September 2012; UPFA won 22 seats including the SLMC seats. The Opposition has 15 seats making SLMC the determining factor in forming a government in the Eastern Provincial Council. The SLMC General Secretary added that the demand has nothing to do with alleged recent issues, between the SLMC […]

Sri Lanka’s NGO crackdown triggers free speech fears

21st July 2014 // 0 Comments

A Sri Lankan government crackdown this month on NGOs has sparked claims that President Mahinda Rajapakse, paranoid that he could be toppled, is again attempting to silence critics and tighten his grip on power. The defence ministry this month banned non-governmental organisations from holding press conferences, awareness campaigns, training for journalists, workshops and disseminating press releases on everything from voter rights to exposing corruption. The ministry, which has regulated local and foreign NGOs since soon after the end of the island’s civil war in 2009, said the order was necessary to stop them operating “beyond their mandate”. But NGO workers, many of whom have long suffered harassment and intimidation in Sri Lanka, said the order was a new crackdown on dissenting voices ahead of possible […]

Sri Lankan Tamil Party Calls for Formation of Secular National Front

21st July 2014 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO: A Sri Lankan Tamil party on Sunday called for the formation of a new secular national political front with participation from majority Sinhalas and minority Muslims to find a credible solution to problems of the Tamil people. The move came during the convention of the Eelam  People’s Revolution Liberation Front (EPRLF), a constituent party of the Tamil National Alliance, in Jaffna. TNA sources said its leader R Sampanthan told the  convention that neither the Tamil people nor the Tamil politicians are demanding a separate Tamil state. It is the wish of all Tamils that a lasting political solution be given to address the grievances of Tamil people in the north and east. Suresh Premachandran, a TNA senior and the leader of  the EPRLF said […]

This Divided Island; Stories From The Sri Lankan War

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

Samanth Subramanian talks about his new book, This Divided Island that chronicles Sri Lanka’s brutal past and uncertain present.  This Divided Island; Stories From The Sri Lankan War Samanth Subramanian Penguin Rs499 320pg What was the impetus to write this book? In part, it was a sort of proximity I felt to the war. I am not from Sri Lanka, but I grew up in Madras and am Tamil, and so the war always felt very near, like a permanent presence in that state’s political atmosphere. So we in Tamil Nadu perhaps followed it more closely than most. In part, though, it was also simple journalistic curiosity, a quest for stories. Here’s this war, stretching over three decades, of which we know little, given how […]

Protest against Rajapaksha’s visit to Commonwealth games in Scotland.

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

While the Sri Lankan government officials remain tight-lipped on President Rajapaksa who is accused of War crimes in killing of more than 40,000 Tamil Civilians in May 2009 in Sri Lanka  participation at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony in Glasgow, Scotland on July 23, Tamils in UK are busy organising a demonstration opposite the Stadium. The Tamil Youth Organisation in UK has asked Tamils to gather at Barrow field Street, Glasgow on at 3.30 pm on the day of the opening. They have arranged 30 centres in England, Wales and Scotland to pick Tamils who are willing to participate in the demonstration with free transport.  There are four centres in London itself for demonstrators to assemble for transport to the venue, including South West, South East, North West […]

TNA has no faith on Mahinda’s probe

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) says it has no faith in the Presidential Commission on missing persons even after the government broadened its mandate to investigate civilian deaths during the war. TNA MP Suresh Premachandran noted that the mandate of Presidential Commission had been expanded only after the UN Human Rights office launched an investigation on the war. Premachandran also recalled that the government had on previous occasions appointed commissions and named international international experts to overlook the investigations yet those attempts ended in failure. President Mahinda Rajapaksa had this week expanded the mandate of the Presidential Commission on mission persons and appointed three international experts to advice the commission. In a Gazette notification, President’s Secretary Lalith Weerathunga had said that the President is of the opinion that the […]

Two different attitudes have been adopted by the government with regard to the administration of the Northern Provincial Council.

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

By Manekshaw The Northern Province Governor, G.A. Chandrasiri, and Chief Minister, C.V. Wigneswaran, were seen in public for the first time at a function at Vembadi Girls High School, Jaffna on Thursday since Chandrasiri was reappointed as Governor, Northern Province by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, last week.The two gentlemen with garlands around their necks walked happily talking to each other towards the school auditorium to the beat of the school band without showing any signs of indifference over the reappointment of Northern Governor’s issue. Governor Chandrasiri was a career military officer whereas Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran was a senior member in the army cadet platoon during his school days at Royal College, Colombo. Governor Chandrasiri served as Jaffna Security Forces Commander and it was during his period the LTTE […]

Crime and Punishment!

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

Zoysa demands expulsion of PS Chairman from SLFP; Keheliya tight-lipped Former Tangalle Pradeshiya Sabha Chairman Sampath Chandrapushpa Vidanapathirana and three others were sentenced to twenty years of rigorous imprisonment, yesterday, for the murder of British tourist Khuram Shaikh and raping of his Russian girlfriend Victoria Alexandrovna in 2012. The accused were sentenced to twenty years of imprisonment on two counts of murder and rape and the judge ruled that the jail terms run concurrently.The verdict was delivered after a marathon three and half-month trial at the Colombo High Court. Earlier, the case was transferred from Hambantota to Colombo after the witnesses for the prosecution were allegedly threatened and intimidated.The four accused earlier pleaded innocence and can appeal against the sentence. So can the Attorney General […]

The underside of Black July

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

1948 – months after gaining independence, the Government of Sri Lanka disenfranchises 33% of Tamils, removing their right to vote …61 years on, the discrimination continues… 1958 – hundreds of Tamils are murdered in the first of many vicious racial attacks …51 years on, the violence continues… 1983 – over 3000 Tamils are murdered and 150,000 made homeless in Sri Lankan State sponsored anti-Tamil riots …26 years on, the genocide continues… Today – the Government of Sri Lanka has withdrawn from a peace-agreement and entered into war, thousands of Tamils have ‘disappeared’ and Tamil journalists, aid workers, human rights activists and politicians have been assassinated …as the world watches on, the eradication of a people continues…….….  BLACK JULY Don’t turn a blind eye! Lend your voice The underside of Black July Today, no one talks about the critical role […]

Why is the Government unable to make its position clear to the people.

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

Ramaphosa visit: What’s really happening? What was there to hide if it was merely to exchange views? Government sent a delegation secretly to New York to meet Darusman and company to argue Sri Lanka’s case.  Fending off Indian pressure to implement the 13th Amendment “and more” as promised to them by the President  Buy time with the international community, to give the impression that it has taken its demands for greater autonomy to the minority Tamils in the North seriously – at least till the next election. The visit of the Acting President of South African is shrouded in mystery; and the more the Government tries to explain the visit, the more curious it gets. They say that foreign experts usually rush in to find […]

War crimes issue: “India and Sri Lanka can find an amicable solution”

20th July 2014 // 0 Comments

India will not see any need to take the issue of alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka to an international forum if Sri Lanka properly addresses the core issues relating to the North and East, according to BJP ideologue Seshadri Chari. Commenting on a range of issues relating to Indo-Lanka relations Dr. Chari in an email interview with the ‘Sunday Times’ said India and Sri Lanka could find a solution to the ‘vexed issue’ of war crimes allegations through bilateral efforts. Dr Chari who heads the Foreign Affairs Policy Cell of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is in Colombo as part of a five member BJP delegation that has been invited by the Bandaranaike Centre for International Studies (BCIS) to hold a discussion on […]

Solheim says Pope can do what Cameron did

3rd July 2014 // 0 Comments

Eric Solheim, the former Norwegian peace envoy, has protested against a proposal by Tamil Diaspora leaders that Pope Francis should cancel his Sri Lanka tour in view of the prevailing situation in the country. The pope should visit the country and point out the issues that need to be pointed out, says Mr. Solheim in a twitter message, according to BBC Sandeshaya. He has responded to a question by Suren Surendiran of the Global Tamil Forum, who has asked as to whether the Pope should cancel the tour as a mark of protest against violence being unleashed against the Muslims in the island. In his response onhttps://twitter.com/SolheimDAC, Solheim says the Pope could do what British Prime Minister David Cameron had done at the Commonwealth summit […]

Kalinga goes all the way to UK to sue Lanka e news

3rd July 2014 // 0 Comments

(Lanka-e-News-01.July.2014, 11.30PM) It is a well and widely known fact locally and internationally that Lanka e news website portal was a most unfortunate news website that fell victim to the cruelest witch hunt of the uncouth, uncivilized unlawful Rajapakse regime in Sri Lanka. It is common knowledge that one of its journalists was abducted and subsequently went missing ; one of its news editors was jailed without any valid ground after being subjected to the most vicious and venomous interrogation by the CID ; the chief editor was forced to flee the country ;the website portal was razed to the ground ; case after case were filed against it claiming Rs.500 million in damages for not revealing the source of information regarding its news report […]

More Links Between Govt & BBS

3rd July 2014 // 0 Comments

Despite government Minister Rajitha Senarathne accusing Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) General SecretaryGalagodaatte Gnanasara of maintaining links with the Tamil Diaspora, the photograph published alongside his claims have in fact revealed the men posing on either side of the monk are actually strong government supporters or anti-LTTE people. The image that is being circulated with Rajitha’s accusations against Gnanasara had been taken last year during his visit to France. The person standing on the right corner has been identified as EPRLF member Devasan while the individual standing right next to Gnanasara on his right has been identified as Sunil Gamini. Sunil Gamini who had been earlier employed as a coordinating secretary to Government Minister Susil Premajayantha had absconded while he was on an official tour to Europe and had sought asylum afterwards. Colombo […]

NPC Ministers seek to intervene in rights violation case against Chief Minister

3rd July 2014 // 0 Comments

I was appointed by Mahinda Rajapaksha and I will follow his orders even if it is bad for the war effected Tamils and not the Tamil’s Leader  the Chief Minister of the Northern Province, C. V. Wigneswaran who wants to help the war effected Tamils. –  Mrs. Vijayalakshi Ramesh –  Four Northern Provincial Council Ministers yesterday sought to intervene in the fundamental rights violation application filed by the Provincial Secretary to the Northern Province, Mrs. Vijayalakshi Ramesh, citing as the first respondent, Chief Minister of the Province, C. V. Wigneswaran Mrs. Ramesh has complained to the Supreme Court that the Chief Minister has no power to interfere in her official activities, as she is appointed by the President, the Head of State. Counsel for Mrs. Ramesh, Gomin Dayasiri, […]

When Big Brother begins to watch

3rd July 2014 // 0 Comments

As reported in Tuesday’s issue of this newspaper, the Department of Police is to shortly begin the second phase of the programme to install Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras within the precincts of inner-Colombo. A peep into what is happening in Colombo on a 24/7 cycle would certainly represent a peep into a futuristic, modern-day Sri Lanka, the moves of the criminals, ordinary people and law enforcement officials, every transgression human and vehicular, and sundry other incidents, both good and bad that are often overlooked or go unnoticed, will be captured on camera. This means the eyes of the CCTV would reach where the arm of the law cannot or refuse to reach. In an exhausting exercise of planning out the second phase of the new CCTV […]

Security Increased in Two Coastal Districts on Terror Alert

3rd July 2014 // 0 Comments

Nagercoil, Tamil Nadu:  Security along the shores in Kanyakumari and Tuticorin districts has been scaled up after an intelligence alert that six militants, trained in Pakistan, were planning to infiltrate into the country through Sri Lanka, police said today.Armed police personnel had been deployed at several places along the coast while additional check posts installed at important points, including Kulachel and Thengaipattinam, from midnight yesterday in view of the alert, a police official said.The Kanayakumari Amman temple, Vivekananda Rock and Tiruvalluvar statue, main attractions of tourists in Kanyakumari, have come under the guard of armed personnel.People have been advised to inform the police if they come across any stranger and suspicious movement of persons.Vehicles were subjected to checking at various check posts and by Mobile Police […]

Lankan foreign minister to visit India next week

3rd July 2014 // 0 Comments

NEW DELHI: Sri Lankan foreign minister G L Peiris will be visiting India next week to hold talks with his counterpart Sushma Swaraj during which key issues, including the welfare of Tamils in Lanka and fishermen, are expected to be discussed. Ministry of external affairs’ spokesperson said India and Lanka were working on Peiris’ visit and “it is likely that he will visit this month”. On the issue of Indian fishermen in Sri Lankan jails, he said more than 175 fisherman have been released since the new government took over and “there is a small number of fishermen who are still in the custody of Sri Lanka and our Mission is working” to secure their release. This will be Peiris’ second visit to India after the installation of […]

Possibility of sanctions surface…

2nd July 2014 // 0 Comments

Govt. Parliamentary Group pow wow at Chaaya BeyBY RAVI LADDUWAHETTY The possibility of sanctions being imposed on Sri Lanka in the wake of the ongoing probes by the United Nations Human Rights Council for alleged human rights abuses and war crimes in Sri Lanka had surfaced during the Government Parliamentary Group meeting chaired by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Monday.This was one of the key points which were raised by a group of SLFP members, senior political sources told Ceylon Today. There was also some views expressed on the possibility of Sri Lanka’s war crimes being referred to the United Nations Security Council as pointed out by a member and others said that China and Russia, like before, will come to Sri Lanka’s rescue. It was also pointed […]

President should invite TNA – Vasu

2nd July 2014 // 0 Comments

PSC on ethnic problem: By Umesh Moramudali  National Languages and Social Integration Minister, Vasudewa Nanayakkara, yesterday stressed that the President needs to invite the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) to join the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC), appointed to find solutions to the ethnic problem. Answering a question at a media briefing yesterday, Nanayakkara said the President needs to have cordial discussions and should imply to the TNA that the government has a genuine intention to solve the ethnic problem.He said, however, there are certain factions in the TNA who do not want to come for the discussions with the government.“MPs who do not want to discuss are funded by certain factions of the Tamil Diaspora. However, the Diaspora is also splitting now. It had split into several factions creating […]

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