7th November 2014

As Sri Lanka Hunts Down Tamils, Kohona’s Landlord Returns to Head UNCA

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

By Matthew Russell Lee UNITED NATIONS, November 3 — On Sri Lanka at UN headquarters in New York the disinterest and worse continues. In 2009 Secretary General Ban Ki-moon went on the Rajapaksas’ victory tour of the bloodbath on the beach. Inner City Press’ coverage is here. In 2011 Sri Lanka’s denial of war crimes, “Lies Agreed To,” was screened inside the UN, hosted by the then-president of UNCA, become the UN’s Censorship Alliance. On November 3, Inner City Press asked Ban’s spokesman Stephane Dujarric about a new development, transcript here, video here from Minute 29:50 – Inner City Press: In Sri Lanka, a newspaper has reported that the Government is searching people down for having “blank human right complaints forms” to the inquiry of […]

President Barack Obama

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

Yesterday, millions of Americans cast their ballots. Republicans had a good night, and I congratulate all the candidates who won. But what stands out to me is that the message Americans sent yesterday is one you’ve sent for several elections in a row now. You expect the people you elect to work as hard as you do. You expect us to focus on your ambitions — not ours — and you want us to get the job done. Period. I plan on spending every moment of the next two years rolling up my sleeves and working as hard as I can for the American people. This country has made real and undeniable progress in the six years since the 2008 economic crisis. But our work […]

Koslanda orphans won’t be handed over to NPC – Govt.

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

by Dasun Edirisinghe Disaster Management Minister Mahinda Amaraweera, MP, has alleged that the five-party Tamil National Alliance (TNA) was seeking to exploit the predicament of the children orphaned by the recent landslide at Koslanda to gain political mileage.. Minister Amaraweera was responding to the TNA-run Northern Provincial Council passing a resolution to adopt those children. Contrary to earlier reports, the Disaster Management Centre has now established that only three children lost both parents, while four lost one parent each. Initial reports placed the number of children who had lost both parents at 75. Addressing the media at the SLFP headquarters, Minister Amaraweera said that the government was capable of looking after the orphans and other children affected by the disaster. Commenting on Northern Province Chief […]

TNA points to massive fraud at NPC Alleges Chief Secretary’s involvement

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

By Our Jaffna Correspondent Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian, Suresh K. Premachandran, has requested President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Northern Province Chief Minister, C.V. Wigneswaran, to investigate a massive fraud, allegedly involving Chief Secretary of the Northern Provincial Council (NPC). He alleged, the Chief Secretary has defrauded millions of rupees allocated to a project titled NELSIP funded by the World Bank. Premachandran told Ceylon Today that he had received several complaints with regard to the mishandling of funds allocated to the project and that he was in possession of ample evidence to prove the alleged involvement of the Chief Secretary of the NPC. He also claimed the fraud involved a group of senior officials and was aimed at discrediting the objectives of the project with the […]

These Are My Humble Requests To Gotabaya

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

By R. Sampanthan – We are discussing today the Votes of the Ministry of Defence, the Minister of Defence being His Excellency President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the Secretary to the Ministry being his brother, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who rumour has it will probably be a Member of this House fairly soon. We would welcome that. May I, Sir, in dealing with the Votes of this Ministry, have your indulgence to raise certain issues relating to this Ministry that has an impact on the life of civilians in this country. I do not do this, Sir, in a spirit of confrontation, but I do think that in this House, in particular, we should have the freedom of expression and we should be able to articulate the feelings of the […]

TN fishermen strike to protest Lanka death penalty

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About 35 lakh fishermen living in more than 10 coastal districts including the State capital of Tamil Nadu on Thursday observed a dawn to dusk agitation to condemn the death penalty awarded to five colleagues from Rameswaram by a Sri Lankan court in a drug trafficking case and demanded their immediate release from Sri Lankan prison. The agitation, launched by various fishing association in the state, included hunger strike, protest demonstrations and rally. The protest was also to put pressure on the ruling AlIADMK in the state and the NDA government at the Centre to take measures for quashing the death penalty and ensure fishermen’s safe release from Colombo. In Chennai, more than 10,000 fishermen associated to Meenavargal Makkal Munnani (Fishermen People’s Front) stayed away […]

Maldivian trio on their way to join Syrian rebel forces, apprehended

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Three Maldivians who were allegedly on their way to join rebel forces in Syria have been apprehended in Sri Lanka and subsequently deported, the Maldives Police Service (MPS) said on Thursday. According to the MPS, the trio – a 25-year-old man, a 23-year-old man, and an 18-year-old woman – had attempted to enter Syria through Turkey. The three had claimed that they entered Sri Lanka for medical purposes.   “When apprehended the three attempted to deceive the Sri Lankan police and claimed that they were en route to Turkey because they were displeased with the medical services in Sri Lanka” said the MPS “They had entered Sri Lanka on a one-way ticket”.   Further, the MPS claims that the 23-year-old man and the 18-year-old woman […]

Ampara to be run by Muslims – JHU

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By Ariyaratne Ganegoda The JHU yesterday condemned the SLMC over its suggestion that the districts be divided on ethnic and religious lines. SLMC had suggested to government that they establish a separate Muslim administration in the Ampara District, as the majority in that district are Muslims. Commenting, the JHU said that carrying out such a request would separate the Muslims from the rest of the people in the country, being a separatist and extremist move. Meanwhile, the National Sangha Council’s Rajawatte Wappa Thera, who addressed a meeting in Colombo Tuesday (4) said, “This is a small country and it cannot be divided on the basis of ethnicity or religion, according to the whims and fancies of certain parties. We cannot tear the country to pieces […]

Mahinda Rajapaksa cannot succeed President Rajapaksa

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

 BASL to move Supreme Court today opposing President’s third term bid I have discussed in these columns some days ago the contention that President Rajapaksa is not qualified to fight an election for a third term by virtue of the operation of Article 31(2) of the Constitution. The repeal of that article by the Eighteenth Amendment does not remove the past operation of anything suffered under the repealed law.Since ex-CJ Sarath Silva first raised this issue, lawyers and non-lawyers have tried to make the case that Sarath Silva is wrong and that President Rajapaksa is not prevented by the Constitution to seek a third term. I have pointed out, and so has Suri Ratnapala, that the relevant section of the Interpretation Ordinance to look at […]

SARATH SILVA AND THE LEGALITY OF MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA’S THIRD TERM

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

In the flood of commentary that has followed the former Chief Justice Sarath Silva’s public intervention regarding the potential illegality of President Rajapaksa seeking a third term, many have joined debate to remind us of Silva’s unsavoury behaviour on and off the Bench. One of the implications of these reminders, some of which have a rather holier-than-thou flavour to them, is that we should treat Silva’s too-clever-by-half argument with a large measure of scepticism on account of his past conduct. Silva himself has not helped his case, and yet again devalued the office he held, with that bizarre ‘apology’ for his decision in the Helping Hambanthota Case. He made matters worse in a train-wreck of a BBC Sinhala service interview by saying that he arrived […]

Communal Politics – The Bane Of A nation

7th November 2014 // 0 Comments

By Hilmy Ahamed – It is unfortunate that Sri Lankans have begun to vote on ethnic considerations. Politicians from minority communities, except those aligned to the TNA have continued to exploit the political opportunities and ensure their wellbeing–always. The nexus between the TNA and the United National Party can be labeled as “nothing better”. The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and the Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) are branded as amongst the worst wheeler-dealers. Is the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) joining the race? The declaration of the next presidential or general elections would bring out the contest amongst the two main political alliances to bid for allegiance of these sectarian parties.  The price, this time around, would be indeed staggering, especially with the cash rich UNFPA […]