31st October 2014

What’s In A Ban On A Non Existent LTTE ?

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Kusal Perera – “After three decades of pain and anguish, today, Sri Lankans of all ethnicities, living in all parts of Sri Lanka, are free from LTTE terror and no longer live in a state of fear.” – HE the President, Mahinda Rajapaksa at the General Debate of the 66th Session of the UN General Assembly, 23rdSeptember, 2011 “I think the major victories were achieved after 18 May 2009. We had to take care of the civilians, demine the land and resettle people in villages. We also had to rehabilitate and socialize the 12,800 surrendered LTTE cadres. Further 5,000 captured are languishing in jail. Demilitarization of the paramilitary forces such as EPDP, PLOTE, TELO, was another need. We could not let them keep arms after we […]

On The Rajapaksa Budget, His Thinking On Tamil Issues And Our Position

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

By R. Sampanthan – We tabled a Position Paper in January 2011 setting out our position. I table that Position Paper and kindly request that it be included at the end of my speech. The Position Paper defined the position of the TNA in regard to a political solution at the bilateral talks that took place between the Government and the Tamil National Alliance. The Government delegation agreed to respond to enable the commencement of a meaningful discussion. They kept on postponing. I wish to explain in some detail what happened when the Government did not come up with their position at the bilateral talks. The speech made by R. Sampanthan on 30th October 2014 Mr. Presiding Member, I am happy to follow my good Friends, […]

The Rise Of Mahinda Rajapaksa, Democracy, Terrorism And The Muslim Factor In Sri Lanka

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Nishthar Idroos – Winds heralding another round of elections loom high. Astrologers, fortune-tellers,  and every political soothsayer are busying themselves to make the kill. It’s that kind of season once again in Sri Lanka. The time to lubricate the palms big time if you’re someone or anyone endowed with the incomprehensible science of planetary movement. All of this can happen only in the resplendent island of Sri Lanka. Television channels compete with each other showcasing supposedly eligible and competent souls-of-clairvoyance confidently deciphering the science to the laity. Supposed god-men  escorted to the palace in utmost secrecy for on-the-spot consultations. Those opting for greater accuracy venture the quick flight over the Palk-straits to consult professionals whose names have reached the “stars”. Government and opposition politicians […]

Govt. falsely accusing UK UNP branch members of being LTTE’ers

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Zacki Jabbar The UNP on Wednesday accused the government of using a recent picture of UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe meeting some members of the UK UNP branch in London, to allege that they were LTTE’ers. General Secretary of the UNP Tissa Attanayake MP said that the four persons in the photograph with Wickremesinghe were Harsha Kannangara, Roshan Samantha, Dharsahan Daniel and Indika Kumara, all office bearers of the UNP UK branch. The Rajapaksa regime was so bankrupt that it was disseminating blatant lies to shore up its dwindling vote base in the run up to the Presidential Election, he noted. The MP pointed out that it was the UPFA government that had helped the LTTE by not challenging its appeal against a 2006 European Union(EU) ban […]

Sri Lanka downplays India’s concerns on death sentences to fishermen

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

Protests continue in Tamil Nadu over death sentence to 5 fishermen Pro-Tamil groups tried to lay a siege to the Sri Lankan Deputy High Commission in Chennai, but police foiled their attempt. Around 200 activists were detained, police said. The angry protestors burnt effigies of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, condemning the death penalty to the fishermen hailing from the state. Protests were also held outside the office of Sri Lankan Airways here. Small political outfits burned effigies of Rajapaksa and Sri Lankan national flags in Kumbakonam and Tuticorin respectively, police said. Advocates boycotted court proceedings in Kumbakonam…….……READ ALL Sri Lanka downplays India’s concerns on death sentences to fishermen Sri Lanka on Friday downplayed India’s concerns over the death sentences handed down to five Indian […]

Slain Tiger’s mother stopped from leaving for Canada: HC Shelly Whiting responds

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

Canadian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka and the Maldives Shelley Whiting yesterday issued a statement challenging front-page news item headlined ‘Slain Tiger’s mother stopped from leaving for Canada’ published in The Island issue of the October 22. She, however, declined to discuss the specific case mentioned in the article. The following is the statement issued by the Canadian High Commissioner: “There is absolutely no basis for insinuations attributed to a senior security official suggesting that there is a diplomatic initiative to relocate Tiger relatives. This is categorically false. Let me be absolutely clear: there is no Canadian diplomatic initiative to relocate relatives of the LTTE. To suggest so is erroneous, inaccurate and baseless fear mongering. Canada has long recognised that there were multiple parties to […]

Thundering wakeup call from voiceless people of Sri Lankla

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

Don’t blame the Koslanda victims“The minister said the Plantation Industries Ministry Secretary has already taken measures to find out why these plantation workers failed to follow the instructions of the NBRO….” But, the question that begs an answer from the Minister is where the poor workers were supposed to go? If, the NBRO, three years ago, had forewarned that the disaster area was landslide susceptible, what did the government do to alleviate the situation? Did they take measures to provide those plantation workers with alternate accommodation in safe areas? Did they also, if they had made such arrangements, also ensured, that not only their lives, but their livelihoods would also be protected? If such arrangements were made, why didn’t those victim plantation workers move across […]

UNP accuses govt of NOT allocating funds for Northern and Eastern provinces

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

By Saman Indrajith UNP National List MP D. M. Swaminathan on Wednesday (Oct. 29) accused President Mahinda Rajapaka of not allocating funds for the Northern and Eastern Provinces through the Budget 2015. MP Swaminathan was participating in the second reading stage debate on budget 2015. The UNPer demanded to know why Northern and Eastern Provinces were being treated as ‘no man’s land’. Swaminathan alleged that the government had deprived the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) run Northern provincial Council of required funds. The government’s policy as regards the Northern Provincial Council was contrary to the 13th Amendment to the Constitution and, therefore the current situation wasn’t acceptable, he said. While noting that Budget summery had tabulated Rs. 56 billion as “Provincial Tax sharing and devolve revenue”, […]

Opposition lays the blame on govt.

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

 Bishop of Badulla decries bid to blame Koslanda victims Heavy rains disrupt search for Sri Lanka landslide survivors by Saman Indrajith The government could make excuses but it should accept the responsibility for its failure to save the lives of people who perished in the Koslanda disaster, Chief Opposition Whip John Amaratunga said in Parliament yesterday. Chief Opposition Whip, addressing Parliament soon after the Chief Government Whip and Water Supply and Drainage Minister made a special statement on the scope of the disaster and the action taken by the government, said that the Opposition wished to convey sympathies to those who had lost their near and dear ones on Wednesday. He said that it was the first time a landslide had destroyed so many lives […]

TNA says will agree for conditional talks

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) says it is ready for conditional talks with President Mahinda Rajapksa to reach a political solution to the Tamil issue. TNA leader R. Sampanthan told Parliament today that his party is ready to negotiate with the President based on three statements the President had made following the end of the war. The three statements include one made following a meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon when the latter had visited Sri Lanka. In the joint statement President Rajapaksa had expressed his firm resolve to proceed with the implementation of the 13th Amendment, as well as to begin a broader dialogue with all parties, including the Tamil parties in the new circumstances, to further enhance this process and to bring […]

UN Committee raises several concerns

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

The UN Human Rights Committee, while taking note of some positive developments in Sri Lanka, also raised several concerns and proposed recommendations in its concluding observations made today on the fifth periodic report of Sri Lanka. The Committee considered the fifth periodic report submitted by Sri Lanka at its meetings held on 7 and 8 October and today made available its concluding observations. Among the positive aspects noted by the Committee are the legislative and institutional steps taken by the State party on corporal punishment, penal code, protection of the rights of persons with disabilities ande adoption of the National Plan of Action for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights. The Committee however raised  concerns over the 18th Amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution […]

Court Dismisses Legal Action Against Tamil Provincial Councilors Seeking “Genocide Probe”

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

The Court of Appeal today dismissed a writ application filed by a resident of Nugegoda who sought a writ of mandamus order directing the Inspector General of Police (IGP) and the attorney General (AG) to take legal action against 33 members of Northern Provincial Council (NPC) and Eastern Provincial Council (EPC) for urging former UN Human Rights High Commissioner Navanidan Pillai through a letter to determine if genocide has taken place in Sri Lanka. Bench comprising Justices Vijith K. Malalgoda (President) and A.H.M.D. Nawaz maintained that petition cannot be entertained because a police complaint has not been made against the respondents.The petitioner Polwatta Gallage Ravindra Niroshan of Nugegoda stated that he was genuinely concerned for the continued safety of the security of the country particular […]

Will cause further divisions in country – BASL

31st October 2014 // 0 Comments

BY Ruwan Laknath Jayakody The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) charged the approval process required for travel to the North as yet another inhuman and unjustified attack on the minorities. “This is an irritant and will cause a lot of national and international problems for the government. When the task is to get these communities into the mainstream and integrate them, such moves will only create further divisions,” BASL Standing Committee on Rule of Law Chairman and Lawyers for Democracy Convenor Lal Wijenayake told Ceylon Today. Describing the move as an economic blockade, he questioned the re-establishing the Colombo-Jaffna Yal-Devi train operation when free movement had been curtailed.  These enforced regulations would create and aggravate the already established view, among the international community, that […]