October 2014

Buddhist hardliners reject federal solution to Sri Lanka’s ethnic issues

7th October 2014 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO, Oct. 7 (Xinhua) — An organization of Buddhist hardliners in Sri Lanka has rejected a federal solution to the country’s long running ethnic problems, insisting it is ” unsuitable,” an official said Tuesday. The Bodu Bala Sena or Buddhist Task Force dismissed the 13th Amendment to Sri Lanka’s Constitution that India along with the Tamil minority in the county believe is the starting point of devolving power to minorities. The 13th Amendment was introduced by India in 1989 but has never been fully implemented in the north and east parts of the country where the Liberation Tamil Tigers of Eelam (LTTE) waged a brutal three decade war to carve out a separate homeland for Tamils. The LTTE was militarily defeated by the Sri Lankan […]

UN Rights Committee reviews Sri Lanka

7th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The UN Human Rights Committee, which began reviewing Sri Lanka’s respect for rights enshrined in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), questioned the Government on the steps it has taken to address several concerns. Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva, Ravinatha Aryasinha, in his opening statement said that Sri Lanka has utmost respect for human rights. He said that terrorism remains a major concern in Sri Lanka and so there was a need to continue with the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA). Committee member Yuji Iwasawa expressed disappointment with the Sri Lankan Government’s lack of cooperation on individual communications procedures, particularly follow-up action. He also noted that the Sri Lanka national action plan promised action on right to privacy and right to information and so […]

SL must stop making empty promises-AI

7th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka must stop making empty promises to the international community and the Sri Lankan people on improving the country’s still desperate human rights situation, Amnesty International said, ahead of a UN review of the country’s rights record. The UN Human Rights Committee (HRC) in Geneva, Switzerland, will on 7 and 8 October, be reviewing Sri Lanka’s respect for rights enshrined in the key human rights treaty: the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). This is the first such assessment since 2003. “More than a decade since the last Committee review of Sri Lanka’s record in 2002, it’s disturbing to see how many rights issues raised then still persist in the country – and how the government has ignored promises to address them,” […]

BBS wants Sri Lanka named ‘Sinhale’

7th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The Bodu Bala Sena (BBS), revealing details of its policy framework, said today the name Sri Lanka should be changed to ‘Sinhale’ and the state flag should be the one used prior to 1815. It also proposes that the executive presidency and the provincial council system be abolished; the name of the parliament changed and the number of parliamentarians reduced to 100. “The country should have a post of ‘Sangaraja’ as the spiritual leader and he should also be the leader of the state. All the decisions with regard to Buddhism should be taken by him. However, the religious freedom should be secured. There will be no discrimination,” BBS Chief Executive Officer Dilantha Vithanage said. He said the BBS would discuss these matters with political […]

What Is Legal And Illegal Does Not Matter In SL Anymore: AHRC

7th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has in a statement issued regarding the brutal assault of a sex worker by a Policeman attached to the Rathnapura Police, has stated that the responsibility of such appalling behavior by the Police should be borne by the government. In the statement that was issued today, the AHRC has pointed out that by dismantling the 17 Amendment; this government destroyed the only serious attempt made to restore discipline in the public service, particularly the Police service and therefore, the government should bear the blame for the shocking behavior displayed by certain police officials. They have gone on to point out that the 17th Amendment was annulled in order to ensure the prevention of free and fair elections and have […]

Colombo bishop is a racist!

6th October 2014 // 0 Comments

In year 2012 Colombo bishop His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith informed the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that only few Tamil nationals were killed in the Lankan war. Commenting to Lankasri FM on President Rajapaksa’s meeting with Pope Francis, the researcher Sudharma went on to say, ”Last year His Eminence Malcolm cardinal Ranjith strongly condemns the international inquiries against SriLanka and also noted such inquiries will affect the sovereignty of this island”Cardinal called upon the Northern leaders to agree for solution.On behalf of the Lankan government in year 2013 cardinal invited the Pope Francis to visit the island nation and casted his fullest support.By releasing special statement in the beginning of year 2014 president thanked the cardinal.Colombo bishop always hides truth from the Catholic […]

Bishop and CM discuss land grab in Mannar

6th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The most critical issue the people in the District of Mannar face today is the forced acquisition of their land. This grave concern was taken up by the Bishop of Mannar, Rev. Rayappu Joseph at a meeting with the Chief Minister (CM) of the North C.V. Wigneswaran. This land-grabbing had gone on incessantly and unabated within the Mannar District. Speaking to Ceylon Today, Bishop Rayappu Joseph said his discussions with the Northern CM mainly centred on the large extent of land, the security forces had acquired from the people. “As a result, there are many who do not own land in the Mannar District, their land been put into other purposes. Some of that land grabbed, within the district, had been distributed to those who […]

Tamil diaspora back an undivided Lanka

6th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The Tamil Diaspora have expressed backing for an undivided Sri Lanka while seeking lasting peace based on justice, reconciliation and a negotiated political settlement. A leading Tamil Diaspora group based in London, the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) says it is committed to non-violence and together with the Tamil National Alliance  (TNA), will work towards Tamil interests. Global Tamil Forum spokesperson and its director of strategic initiatives, Suren Surendiran, presently in Chennai on a private visit, told the Deccan Chronicle that the GTF believes that the meeting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with the TNA was a significant step. “On the day after his taking charge as PM, Mr Modi had met President Rajapaksa, who was an invited guest at his inauguration event. However, before meeting a formal Sri Lanka’s government delegation […]

”Assault of High Commissioner Chris Nonis is only one in a series of acts” – Kunanayakam hits out at ‘hooliganism’

6th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Kunanayakam hits out at ‘hooliganism’ Sri Lanka’s former permanent representative to the UN in Geneva, Tamara Kunanayakam said the assault of High Commissioner Chris Nonis is only one in a series of acts in a tragedy that opened in Geneva in 2009 with the same cast of villains, followed by other acts also in Geneva in 2011 and 2012, and still others played out in Rome and Paris. In a brief comment made on the incident by email, she said, “The method they used then to disarm Sri Lanka’s representatives was mobbing. And now they have advanced to physical thuggery, and these top “diplomats” continue their devastation, not only with total impunity, but enjoying high patronage, promotions, and financial advantages. Their modus operandi may have […]

‘British Diplomat Of The Year’ attacked by Sri Lankan MP close to President!

6th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Vatican door closed for thug MP! Attacking The ‘British Diplomat Of The Year’ And Our Foreign Service The physical assault by Sajin Vass Gunawardena, MP is a clear reflection on the country’s tragic situation. This is the first ever time since Independence that a parliamentarian has resorted to such demeaning behaviour- attacking a diplomat who was on a State-related visit to another country. The matter is even worse in that, the attacker………….  read all This is why Chris Nonis resignation was accepted! As soon as he arrived at the Vatican, the president had called Dr. Nonis to inquire about it, and wanted to know if he had complained to Cardinal Ranjith. Dr. Nonis has replied that he has complained only to the president, and that […]

India should assert role as regional leader: Global Tamil Forum

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

http://www.deccanchronicle.com/141005/nation-current-affairs/article/india-should-assert-role-regional-leader-global-tamil-forum India should assert role as regional leader: Global Tamil Forum Chennai: Global Tamil Forum spokesperson and its director of strategic initiatives, Suren Surendiran, presently in Chennai on a private visit, speaks about the Sri Lankan Tamils gaining new hope from change of regime in Delhi. Excerpts: Q: The TNA recently met Indian PM Narendra Modi. How do you view this development? Suren Surendiran: Global Tamil Forum (GTF) believes that Mr Modi meeting TNA members, who are the democratically elected representatives of Tamils in Sri Lanka, is a significant step. On the day after his taking charge as PM, Mr Modi had met President Rajapaksa, who was an invited guest at his inauguration event. However, before meeting a formal Sri Lanka’s government delegation or the official […]

Son kept at Boosa Army camp gone missing – Heart breaking tales before Missing Persons Commission WITH military intelligence officers in the room

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Zahrah Imtiaz The new building on Sunday (28) however, became a place for old wounds to be healed and bottled up grievances to be aired as the Presidential Commission on Missing Persons held its sessions at this location. “What is your name? Who are you missing?” asked the translator as the first witness came into give evidence before the Commission, and all listened patiently as the she related her harrowing story to be written into a file. Wasanthakumaran Parani, a resident of Velangovil, lost her son and daughter and they were last seen on 16 May 2009. Her daughter, Ilakia was 19 years old when she disappeared and her son was 17. She said her daughter was forcibly recruited by the LTTE at Mullivaikal […]

New York slapping incident of Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

There was heavy embarrassment for President Rajapaksa over a New York incident. It only remained a secret for a few hours. One local television channel still broke the story followed extensively by the social media. The moral in the story about the attempted blackouts is the fact that such cloaks of secrecy or giving spins to gain temporary advantage is no longer possible. They have a way of getting into the social media and reaching a wider audience. Such reportage is not always accurate and tends to cause even more damage to the Government’s credibility. The incident was at the New Jersey residence of Dilan Ariyawansa who now represents Sri Lankan Airlines in New York. Guests who arrived on the night of September 23 (Tuesday) […]

Diaspora urges Commonwealth

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Call on SL to desist from proscribing NGOs BY SULOCHANA RAMIAH MOHAN The Tamil Diaspora urged the UK Commonwealth Office to urgently call upon the Sri Lankan authorities to withdraw the proscribed prominent Diaspora organizations and individuals as ‘foreign terrorist entities’. In a letter to Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Foreign and Commonwealth Office MP Philip Hammond dated 1 October, 2014, the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) President Rev. Dr. S. J. Emmanuel said that while all the assistance the United Kingdom Government and Foreign and Commonwealth Office has given to the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) and the Tamil community in their efforts to bring peace to the people in Sri Lanka, unfortunately, the Government of Sri Lanka do not view them as […]

High Commissioner to the United Kingdom Nonis Vs. Sajin MP

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Sajin vs. Nonis The Sajin Vas Gunawardene – Chris Nonis encounter which grabbed the headlines last week has done no good to Sri Lanka. Even an allegation of that nature, that a parliamentarian with executive responsibility in the External Affairs Ministry had slapped the country’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, certainly makes us look a banana republic. Worse, Gunawardene was on the President’s entourage to the UN General Assembly and Nonis was also there in that context. The latest news to break on this score is that the Foreign Secretary, Ms. Kshenuka Senewiratne, has made a complaint against High Commissioner Nonis. What exactly this is we do not know although there have been reports of an uncomplimentary reference to Senewiratne allegedly made by him. […]

They Come Seeking The Missing …

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Camelia Nathaniel “There were a few cases of some overzealous officials trying to influence some people to accept death certificates, get compensation and close the case. In one case, and that too quite by accident, the Terrorist Investigation Department was conducting its own investigations near the place we were holding our sitting. I had taken up these cases with the relevant authorities. Such cases are now rare.” Justice Maxwell Paranagama Chairman, Presidential Commission on Disappearances  The Presidential Commission on Disappearances and War Crimes, that held their sittings in Killinochchi from September 27 to 30, had heard 317 cases of disappearances. However the commission was of the view that some cases needed to be investigated properly. Hence they asked President Mahinda Rajapaksa to establish an […]

Jeyalalitha’s Conviction Will Not Change Anything – Gajen Ponnambalam

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The recent arrest of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jeyalalithaa and the stand India took at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) sessions in Geneva recently is a talking point among political circles here in Sri Lanka. While many are closely watching as to how Tamil Nadu will deal with Sri Lanka under its new Chief Minister, the direction the Indian central government is taking on Sri Lanka has also raised a few eyebrows. President of the Tamil National People’s Front (TNPF), Gajen Ponnambalam, said that in his view the Indian government is only focused on securing its interests and not that of Sri Lankan Tamils. “Tamil Nadu politics is different from New Delhi’s politics. Tamil Nadu is very supportive of the Tamil national […]

Indian model of devolution needed in Sri Lanka – Anandasangaree

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

A veteran Sri Lankan Tamil politician has written a letter to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi backing the Indian model of “devolution of power” to solve the ethnic impasse in the island nation. “I am one who had been campaigning for an Indian model as an alternative to a federal solution,” V. Anandasangaree wrote to Modi.  Anandasangaree, 81, is the leader of the Tamil United Liberation Front and a former Member of the Parliament. Referring to the TNA leaders’ meeting with Modi in New Delhi, Anandasangaree in his letter catalogues the links between the LTTE and the TNA. “Indian Prime Minister’s advice would be important to find a solution to the Tamil problem but finding a solution was not the monopoly of TNA. Hence action […]

Nonis-Sajin Saga The good, the bad, and the pathetic

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Two different assaults have shaken Sri Lanka in the past few days. One was the assault on a street prostitute in Ratnapura called ‘Batti’. The second was the assault on Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Dr. Chris Nonis. The alleged perpetrators of the assaults are a police officer, and a Member of Parliament. There are differing views regarding the assault on Batti. However, there is no excuse for such an assault. The incident had allegedly occurred in the first week of September. However, it only came to light in the final week of that month after a video of the incident was uploaded to the Internet. Barely two days after the video started circulating online, the police sergeant involved in the assault […]

Sajin denies assaulting Nonis, says Kshenuka, Prasad were present

5th October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Zacki Jabbar The resignation letter submitted by Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to the UK Chris Nonis to President Mahinda Rajapaksa on September 24 had not reached the Foreign Ministry in keeping with normal procedure, as of yesterday. Ministry sources said that they were yet to receive the High Commissioners quit notice. “Maybe, it would reach us after the presidential delegation to the Vatican, which includes Minister G.L.Peiris and Sajin Vas Gunawardena MP, returns to Colombo today after visiting Pope Francis in the Vatican,” ministry sources said. Dr.Nonis when contacted over the telephone at his London residence confirmed on Friday that he had tendered his resignation to the President on September 24, the day on which he accused Gunawardena who was a Monitoring MP at […]

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