UK NEWS

Sri Lanka-Born Hollywood Conman Jailed in United Kingdom

25th June 2014 // 0 Comments

Los Angeles:  A Sri Lanka-born conman, claiming to be a Hollywood film producer, has been jailed for over three years after stealing 1.6 million pounds from United Kingdom taxpayers while living a life of luxury in the United States.Damita Nikapota, 47, is believed to have spent the proceeds of his crime on a Hollywood lifestyle which included a Spanish-style villa in Malibu, California, and extensive travel to places such as the Cannes Film Festival and Sri Lanka.Nikapota made a number of fraudulent Value Added Tax or VAT repayment claims beginning in 2006 via his Los Angeles-based film company, AS Productions Limited, for film production costs totalling more than 11 million pounds.He claimed to be involved in, among other film projects, the production and filming of a […]

Lyca’s Gnanam Foundation has donated 3000 Million Rupees to War effected in Srilanka

25th June 2014 // 0 Comments

Lyca’s Gnanam Foundation, established in December 2010 with a noble objective of supporting the marginalised people around the globe in achieving a sustainable means of livelihood, proudly moves to the next phase of charity in war-ravaged Sri Lanka, committing a mammoth 3000 million rupees on various projects.   The motto of the Lyca’s Gnanam Foundation is — give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for lifetime.

UK cop got £400,000 after Lankan visit

24th June 2014 // 0 Comments

A British police trainer who identified bodies in Sri Lanka following the 2004 Tsunami disaster has won a £400,000 settlement from his former employers after suffering post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the Press Association reported. David Collins, 45, worked 16-hour days managing a mortuary and described the experience as a “production line of bodies” following the huge wave which killed 228,000 people around the Indian Ocean. When he returned to Britain, Mr Collins did not receive any de-brief from his employer, the National Police Improvement Agency, where he was a trainer in forensics, photography and crime scene preparation. Since his experience in Sri Lanka recovering and identifying bodies, he developed mental health problems and had to leave his job. He is now receiving therapy for PTSD. […]

90,000 Tamil War Widows Suffer in Sri Lanka: Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam

24th June 2014 // 0 Comments

On this international widow’s day (June 23); in Sri Lanka over 90,000 Tamil war widows continue to suffer even after the end of the war five years ago in 2009, said Mrs.Balambihai Murugadas, Minister of Homeland Development Affairs, Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE). According to a May 2012 report by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office on Human Rights and Democracy; there are up to 90,000 Tamil war widows in the North & East of Sri Lanka. Several reports including by Human Rights watch and Amnesty International reported of several cases of Sri Lankan Security Forces carrying out rape and sexual violence of Tamil women with impunity. Recently there have been discoveries of mass graves throughout the Tamil homeland, including burnt bodies of many women. […]

NEWS by GTF

20th June 2014 // 0 Comments

AL-JAZEERA  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Sri Lanka army ‘blocks’ return of Tamils <http://www.aljazeera.com/video/asia/2014/06/sri-lanka-army-blocks-return-tamils-201461818134154167.html>   BBC NEWS ASIA Sri Lanka Muslims call for UN help over sectarian violence <http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-27916617>   –NEWS–   COLOMBO GAZETTE  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Anti-BBS monk kidnapped, attacked <http://colombogazette.com/2014/06/19/anti-bbs-monk-found-assaulted/>   COLOMBO GAZETTE  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Muslim council for hate groups ban <http://colombogazette.com/2014/06/19/muslim-council-for-hate-groups-ban/>   THE ISLAND  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Rauff wants two top UN officials to scrutinise GoSL conduct <http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=105344>   REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS SECTARIAN VIOLENCE IN SOUTH DECLARED OFF-LIMITS FOR MEDIA <http://en.rsf.org/sri-lanka-sectarian-violence-in-south-17-06-2014,46465.html>   DAILY FT  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Parliament approves move to reject UNHRC probe; Opposition cries foul <http://www.ft.lk/2014/06/19/parliament-approves-move-to-reject-unhrc-probe-opposition-cries-foul/>   THE NATION  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Motion against UNHRC probe passed by 134 votes <http://www.nation.lk/edition/breaking-news/item/30389-motion-against-unhrc-probe-passed-by-134-votes.html>   COLOMBO TELEGRAPH  **COMMENTS […]

Question by Jim Cunningham MP on sexual violence issues in Sri Lanka

20th June 2014 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs for what reason Sri Lanka has not been included as a priority country for the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative. [200735] Mr Swire: The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) is global in reach. It aims to address impunity for crimes of conflict-related sexual violence wherever these occur. We remain concerned at reports of a culture of impunity for rape and sexual violence and a lack of support for victims in Sri Lanka, as well as reports of the use of sexual violence as a means of torture in custody. We have engaged significantly […]

3000 Sri Lankan Muslims protests in London – PHOTOS

18th June 2014 // 0 Comments

More than 3000 Sri Lankan Muslims protested today outside the Prime Ministers house in London today. The Protests was against the Sri Lankan government sponsored riots on the Minority Muslim community. Four people were killed and nearly 80 seriously wounded, while dozens of homes, businesses and vehicles were torched, with violence spreading to Beruwala.  Protesters urged authorities to investigate and take action against those responsible. Large number of Muslim Women and Children took part in the protest. The attacks are the latest in a series of religious clashes to hit Sri Lanka following unrest in January and last year, when Buddhist mobs attacked a mosque in the capital Colombo. Muslims make up about 10 percent of the 20 million population, but are accused by nationalists of […]

GTF joins international condemnation of inter-communal violence in Sri Lanka

17th June 2014 // 0 Comments

PRESS STATEMENT 17 June 2014  GTF joins international condemnation of inter-communal violence in Sri Lanka lobal Tamil Forum joins the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms Navi Pillay, and many others in condemning the communal violence targeting the Muslim community in south-western Sri Lanka over the past couple of days. More than 78 people have been seriously injured and at least three have been confirmed dead following violence predominantly aimed at the Muslim population in the towns of Aluthgama and Beruwala.  On Sunday 15th June, a rally by the extremist, Buddhist Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) organisation, descended into chaos as the BBS and its followers moved through predominantly Muslim areas chanting anti-Muslim slogans and inciting hatred. Mosques and tens of Muslim-owned local businesses and homes […]

Never Ending Madness of Rajapaksha

15th June 2014 // 0 Comments

By Rajasingham Jayadevan – The Extraordinary gazette notification of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka listing of designated persons, groups and entities under paragraph 4(2) of the United Nations Regulations No. 1 of 2012 by the Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa dated 20 March 2014 proscribed sixteen overseas Tamil organisations and over 400 Tamils all over the world. Government gazette is an organ to officially advertise the agenda or decisions of the government and its departments. Under the constitution, any statutory decisions have to come through legislative or the executive and must follow the procedural process. Strangely, the decision to proscribe the groups and the individuals appears to be a singular decision of the Defence Secretary who is not even an elected member of the parliament. He only carries out […]

GTF ready to assist OHCHR probe

15th June 2014 // 0 Comments

With the outgoing UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay confirming that her office has put together a team to investigate allegations over the war in Sri Lanka, the role of the Tamil Diaspora will be also in the spotlight. Suren Surendiran, the spokesman for the Global Tamil Forum (GTF), an influential Tamil lobby group based in London expressed his views on the investigation. By Easwaran Rutnam Q:  Does the GTF has any plans on assisting the OHCHR probe on Sri Lanka by providing information or any form of evidence related to the war?  A:The process of collecting evidences or the operational terms of reference for the investigation haven’t been made public as yet. Just as GTF submitted a whole series of documentary evidences […]

Sri Lanka will NOT Sign Declaration to End Sexual Violence in Conflict?

15th June 2014 // 0 Comments

While Britain hosted a summit to end sexual violence in conflict, the British Government said it hopes Sri Lanka will sign the Declaration to End Sexual Violence in Conflict. “The Declaration has now been endorsed by over three quarters of the world’s countries. We would welcome it if Sri Lanka was to join them,” a British High Commission spokesperson told The Sunday Leader. Meanwhile speaking at an event at the British High Commission in Colombo to mark the summit against sexual violence in conflict, the British High Commissioner to Colombo John Rankin said that Britain is convinced that rape and sexual violence are not inevitable but a deliberate tactic of war that can be deterred, prevented and punished. He said that no country can say it […]

Sri Lanka and others ‘need to explain their absence’ from summit – UK Minister Hugo Swire

13th June 2014 // 0 Comments

Drawing attention to Sri Lanka’s refusal to be represented at the the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, taking place in London this week, the British Foreign Office Minister of State, Hugo Swire called on Sri Lanka to explain their absence. “Clearly we would like Sri Lanka to be here, but they are not,” Mr Swire said, speaking to Tamil Guardian just before the ministerial dialogue session this morning.  “I think countries that are not here need to explain to their communities why they are not,” he said, adding, “150 plus countries have signed up to this and its more a case of why aren’t you here than why are you here.” “Obviously we would like all countries to sign up to this,” he […]

The Ease Of Negotiating With Sympathy

11th June 2014 // 0 Comments

By Rajiva Wijesinha –  Prof Laksiri Fernando, in responding to my account of discussions about a Senate, has reminded me about publishing the proposals, as I had mentioned, and I will send them in as soon as I am back in Colombo. However, while I do not recall promising to publish my correspondence with Mr Sumanthiran – which is not in fact of any great significance – perhaps it would be useful, given current controversies, to publish the draft he and I prepared about land matters. What we realized, which is why I proposed that we look at the matter quietly, was that the issue was causing much controversy based on dogma. TheTNA insisted that the 13th Amendment conferred land powers on the Provincial Councils, the government relied on the Constitutional provision that land grants […]

Sexual violence against Tamils ‘systematic’, ‘part of policy framework’ – Yasmin Sooka

11th June 2014 // 0 Comments

Yasmin Sooka, co-author of the UN Panel of Experts report into mass atrocities in Sri Lanka and the ‘An Unfinished War: Torture and Sexual Violence in Sri Lanka 2009—2014‘report, called on Tuesday for international action to stop ongoing sexual violence by the security security forces against Tamils, which she stressed was “not random” but “systematic”. In an interview with the Tamil Guardian during the global summit on ‘End Sexual Violence in Conflict’ taking place in London this week, Ms Sooka stressed that five years after the war, sexual violence “is still happening in Sri Lanka and we have to draw attention to it so we can put a stop to it”. “I was shocked by the witness statements and the testimonies, because the kind of things that were done, were so depraved,” […]

William Hague to investigate claims of Tamil rape victims being deported

11th June 2014 // 0 Comments

Pledge follows allegations UK is sending back Sri Lankan asylum seekers who have been abused by security forces. William Hague has said the government will investigate claims that Tamil asylum seekers are being deported from the UK to Sri Lanka despite evidence they have been subjected to rape and sexual abuse by the country’s security forces. Link to video: Angelina Jolie: prosecutions can prevent future sexual violence in conflict Refugees, their lawyers and advocacy groups made the allegations on Tuesday on the opening day of the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, hosted by the UK, which has faced accusations of hypocrisy over the issue. Lawyers even reported an acceleration of deportations of Tamils in recent weeks, which they believed has been triggered […]

Wings of Security forces in secret camps for torture and sexual violence on Tamil Girls – Time To Act on Sri Lanka

11th June 2014 // 0 Comments

Why has the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict forgotten the Sri Lankan survivors?  But regrettably, Foreign Secretary Hague has forgotten about the courageous survivors of sexual violence in Sri Lanka. Yet Sri Lanka, where rape has been used as a weapon of war for many years of brutal civil conflict, is not being examined. Refugees are being deported from the UK back to Sri Lanka to face further torture or even death. Horrific crimes are being committed with total impunity by police and armed forces. The Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict begins today, June 10-13, 2014, on the banks of the Thames here in London. The Summit is organized by Foreign Secretary William Hague and Special Envoy of the UN High Commissioner for […]

US, UK urge Lanka to support probe

10th June 2014 // 0 Comments

The Unites States and Britain today urged the Sri Lankan Government to support the investigation into the war in Sri Lanka. Envoys of the US and UK, speaking at the 26th session of the UN Human Rights Council currently meeting in Geneva, said the Sri Lankan Government must ensure access to those involved in the investigation. The US Ambassador to the UN in Geneva, Keith Harper thanked the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay for organising the investigation on Sri Lanka through her office. Harper said the investigation signals the importance of promoting justice, accountability and reconciliation in Sri Lanka. “We urge the Sri Lankan government to cooperate fully with the investigation, including granting access to investigators, and preventing retaliation against those who […]

GTF News Update – 10th June 2014

10th June 2014 // 0 Comments

The 26th Session of the UN Human Rights Council started yesterday. The opening statement by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, including remarks on Sri Lanka, can be found here: https://www.colombotelegraph.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/UNHRC-26-Opening-Statement-Human-Rights-Council.pdf The Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict started today in London. Concerns have been expressed at the fact that the situation in Sri Lanka is not on the event’s agenda. Full information on the Summit can be found here:https://www.gov.uk/government/news/global-summit-to-end-sexual-violence-in-conflict-latest-updates  –NEWS–  COLOMBO GAZETTE  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** US, UK urge Lanka to support probe <http://colombogazette.com/2014/06/10/us-uk-urge-lanka-to-support-probe/>   CEYLON TODAY  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Silvia Cartwright on UNHRC Probe Panel <http://www.ceylontoday.lk/16-65982-news-detail-silvia-cartwright-on-unhrc-probe-panel.html>   THE ISLAND  **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Sexual violence in conflict: GL explains why SL won’t attend London conference <http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=104836>   DAILY FT  **COMMENTS CAN BE […]

British Minister ‘disappointed’ with Sri Lankan absence at summit

10th June 2014 // 0 Comments

British Foreign Office Minister Mark Simmonds has said that the UK is “disappointed” Sri Lanka chose not to endorse a British initiative to tackle sexual violence in conflict. Talking to the Tamil Guardian at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, which is currently under way in London, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs said, “We have an interesting relationship with the Sri Lankan government because we are pushing the international community to have an exploratory investigation into some of the allegations of human rights abuses that took place during the conflict… So we very much hope that the Sri Lankan government will engage with this important agenda in the fullness of time.” Commenting on Sri Lanka’s decision not […]

Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict – Why Sri Lanka was not included?

10th June 2014 // 0 Comments

 Great public events in London at Global Summit 10-12 June! Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict!! Very Important Tamils attend this free 3 day events & give Voice for the Voiceless victim of our Tamil women in Tamileelam! Sexual …violence in conflict destroys lives and damages communities. Sexual violence in conflict destroys lives and damages communities. The Foreign Secretary and Angelina Jolie, Special Envoy for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, are co-chairing the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict on 10-13 June 2014 at ExCel London. This is the largest gathering ever brought together on the subject, with a view to creating irreversible momentum against sexual violence in conflict and practical action that impacts those on the ground. 3 days of free […]

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