12th October 2014

Jaya Judgment And After

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

By N Sathiya Moorthy If someone in Sri Lanka thought that the jail-term handed down to Jayalalithaa, until then the Chief Minister of the south Indian State of Tamil Nadu, would ease avoidable political tensions across the Palk Strait, they should be sadly mistaken. If they thought that pre-occupation with pending bail petition(s) and appeals against the Special Trial Court’s order in Bangalore, capital of the neighbouring State of Karnataka, would digress her attention away from major issues involving Sri Lanka, again they could be proved wrong. At the end of the day, it’s about issues, and not just personalities. Or, it’s about perceptions on issues. In this case, it’s about perceptions of issues pertaining to Sri Lanka in sections of the polity and the […]

UNHRC Is Simply Evaluating Sri Lanka’s Compliance To A Covenant – Yolanda Foster

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The UN Human Rights Committee, which is currently meeting in Geneva, reviewed the situation in Sri Lanka last week. The Committee raised several concerns during the review, including issues related to impunity, torture and freedom of expression for which the Government delegation gave its responses. Amnesty International was among the human rights groups and organisations which made submissions to the Committee.  Sri Lanka researcher at Amnesty International, Yolanda Foster told The Sunday Leader the review had raised some pertinent questions on Sri Lanka. Following are excerpts of the interview:   By Easwaran Rutnam Q: Did the UN human Rights Committee session on Sri Lanka have the expected outcome as far as human rights groups like Amnesty International are concerned?  A:  On October 7th and 8th the […]

‘Govt Should Address Charges By UNHRC ‘ Hassan Ali

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress feel that the government of Sri Lanka should address the charges levelled against them by the UNHRC and provide credible answers to these charges instead of trying to take on an arrogant stance. Speaking to The Sunday Leader SLMC parliamentarian Hassan Ali said that while the government  claims to be able to handle its own domestic issues, they have been silent and unable to deal with extremist elements such as the BBS in spite of them creating many issues that have created fear and anxiety among the minority communities.  He also stated that if the government does not want the UN to interfere its affairs then they should not be a signatory to the UN charter, but added that while […]

NPC And Govt. In War Of Words

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Camelia Nathaniel and Waruni Karunarathne The Northern Provincial Council (NPC) passed two resolutions last week – one demanding that the Security Forces (SF) vacate all privately owned lands and houses in the province by the end of the year, and the other, demanding that the government hands over to the provinces, powers over land, as per the 13 Amendment (13A) of the Constitution. The resolutions were passed with all the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) members voting in favour. However, the Eelam Peoples’ Democratic Party (EPDP) had abstained from voting on the resolution seeking vacation of lands by the SF but voted for the one demanding land powers for the provinces. In the day-long debate, TNA members presented their estimates of the lands and houses […]

Female teachers in Jaffna forced to pay for and wear Rajapaksa’s party colours

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Female teachers in Jaffna are being forced to pay for and wear blue sarees, to represent the colours of the President’s political party, during Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Jaffna visit. The teachers are having the cost deducted from their salaries, without any prior consultation. Uthayan reports teachers as saying that at 2500 Rupees, the sarees cost far more than what they would usually pay for their work clothes and that the cost was too steep for something worn for one day. Foreigners banned from travelling to North ahead of Rajapaksa visit The Sri Lankan military was instructed by the government to ban all foreign citizens from travelling to the North, ahead of the President Rajapaksa’s visit to Jaffna. “The restrictions had been imposed in view of threats […]

CAN MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA WIN AGAIN?

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

CAN MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA WIN AGAIN? SRI LANKA’S UVA PROVINCIAL ELECTION AND ITS IMPLICATIONS FOR PRESIDENTIAL RACE By Dr. S. I. Keethaponcalan Sri Lanka concluded the provincial council election for the Uva province, one of the nine provinces, on September 20, 2014. The significance of the Uva election was its implications for the presidential vote, which will materialize sooner than later followed by the general election to the national legislature. Uva confirmed that the incumbent president’s chance of winning a third term will not be as easy as it was originally contended. It was widely believed that President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who has the authority conferred by the constitution to call for a fresh presidential election after completion of four years in office, would face a snap […]

Colombo disproves functionality of 13A

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 October 2014, 17:38 GMT] Despite the tall claims of New Delhi and Washington on the effectiveness of the Provincial Council model under 13 Amendment of the unitary constitution of genocidal Sri Lanka, as a ‘starting point’ for the solution of national question in the island, the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) chief minister Mr. C. V. Wigneswaran himself on Friday has pointed out how the Rajapaksa regime in Colombo disproves the functionality of the 13A. In a letter to Mahinda Rajapaksa, the NPC-CM condemned the Colombo regime unilaterally convening a “Special District Development Meeting” on Monday for the 5 districts coming under the NPC, without consulting the provincial body or even informing it on the necessity and agenda of the “curious meeting.” The […]

A slap in the face of Mother Lanka

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

A slap in the face of Mother Lanka My Dear Chris, I thought I must write to you because, in the last few weeks, your name has been in the headlines virtually every day although very few people had heard of you before that. Ah, what fame a mere slap in the face can bring, even though it is in fact a slap in the face for the whole country! There are those who wonder what you were doing as our representative in London, when you were in fact a medical doctor and not a career diplomat of the Foreign Service. That is hardly surprising though, because diplomats are now foreign to our Foreign Service which is more of a Family Service. I am told […]

Email against Sajin: CID questions Amza, former Director General of Economic Affairs

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

CID detectives have been called in to probe an email allegedly critical of Sajin de Vass Gunawardena, Monitoring MP for the External Affairs Ministry. Detectives have recorded statements from P.M. Amza, former Director General of Economic Affairs, and Prasanna Gamage who was attached to the SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Co-operation) Secretariat. Both officials have been relieved of their responsibilities. As exclusively revealed in the Sunday Times of September 28, the two career Foreign Service officials were relieved of their responsibilities on instructions from Mr. Vass Gunawardena. The orders were sent from New York where Mr. Vass Gunawardena was a member of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s official entourage to the UN General Assembly sessions. Allegedly initiated by Mr. Amza, a copy of which has been […]

“Now you understand why we are pushing against Sri Lanka over human rights violations.” British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond

12th October 2014 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Washington DC Prasad Kariyawasam says that NO assault took place and High Commissioner Nonis was a liar. “Now you understand why we are pushing against Sri Lanka over human rights violations.” British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond asks HC Nonis President going ahead with January poll, questions over Pope’s visit Vatican’s formal response likely when Presidential poll is announced, but preparations continue More details of Sajin Vass’ alleged attack on Nonis; MR dismisses it but British politicians shocked UNP still embroiled in power struggle; seniors worried about role of “outsider” with links to UPFA leaders UPFA parliamentarians caught a glimpse last Friday of how opinions clashed at the highest levels over an unexpected issue that haunts the Government — the alleged assault on […]