5th March 2015

Probe on bribe to US Congressmen

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

The Government is to launch an investigation into claims that the former Government had collected funds through institutions based in the United States to pay some US Congressmen to back Sri Lanka on the human rights issue. Janatha Viumukthi Peramuna (JVP) leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake questioned the Government in Parliament today over the claims. Responding to this, Deputy Foreign Minister Ajith Perera said that, according to the documents in the hands of his Ministry, funds had been collected for the Congressmen but it was not clear if the money had been given to them or if they had taken the money and not done what was expected from them. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe later said that collecting money for US Congressmen is a violation of US laws. […]

UK reiterates backing for report

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

The British Government has reiterated its support for the report on Sri Lanka compiled by an investigations team appointed by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). British Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire said that his Government also feels it is right to give the new Sri Lankan Government time before the report is presented to the UN Human Rights Council. The report was to be presented to the Human Rights Council this month at the ongoing 28th session but it was postponed to September. While most foreign Governments back the move, the Tamil Diaspora, including those based in London, have raised concerns over the report being postponed. The Sri Lankan Government has asked for time to address the human rights concerns before the […]

Arrested ex-Women Sea Tiger chief has French connection?

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka arrests France-bound woman over rebel links Ex female LTTE leader arrested? By Shamindra Ferdinando Women Sea Tigers parade on M’tivu coast Ex-senior Sea Tiger cadre Jeyaganesh Murugesu Pakeerathy (41), who was taken into custody at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) on Monday (2) has been granted French permanent resident status. The Terrorist Investigation Department (TID) arrested her soon after her arrival at the airport to leave for France. Pakeerathy is a mother of an eight-year-old child. Authoritative sources told The Island that having permanent residence is a privileged status which allowed a recipient to live in France indefinitely. Sources said that Pakeerathy carried a Sri Lankan passport though her husband Subramaniyam Jeyaganesh alias Samiraj had received French citizenship. Those having French permanent residence aren’t eligible […]

Prime Minister denies existence of secret detention camps

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

‘Those not among prison population either perished during war or living overseas’ by Shamindra Ferdinando Accusations that Tamil youth were being held in secret detention camps were baseless, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told a gathering of Buddhist clergy at Rukmale Sri Dharmaloka Vijayaloka Mahaviharaya on Sunday (1). Among the invitees at a felicitation ceremony for newly appointed Mahanayake Thera Ven. Iththapane Dharmalankara was Rt. Rev. Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith. Premier Wickremesinghe emphasised that all those who had been taken into custody were being held in legally run facilities and, therefore, all detainees could be accounted for.   The UNP leader said instructions had been given for preparing a full list of persons in custody in a bid to dispel fears expressed in some quarters as regards […]

Top UN political official urges Sri Lanka to seize ‘historic moment’ for reconciliation

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

The United Nations will stand with the people and leaders of Sri Lanka as the country forges ahead along the path to reconciliation, the Organization’s top political official said today, as he voiced encouragement at the Government’s ongoing commitment to promote accountability and human rights following the nation’s three decade-long civil war. Addressing reporters in the capital of Colombo during the conclusion of his four-day visit to the Asian country, the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Jeffrey Feltman, applauded Sri Lanka for its democratic elections and peaceful transition and reiteratedSecretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s claim that the island nation was entering a “moment of historic opportunity.” Mr. Feltman acknowledged that Sri Lankans had suffered during the country’s long conflict and that despite the work of many commissions, the […]

SF calls on people to create atmosphere of trust to combat separatism

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

General Sarath Fonseka stated that the majority in the country needed to assume the responsibility of creating an environment of trust in order to combat ideas of separatism while slamming politicians for stirring racial tensions to gain political advantages. The General made these comments while conducting a forum yesterday at the Kingsbury Hotel under the theme ‘The Untold Story by General Fonseka’, which recounted in detail the final Eelam War. When questioned about elements of the Diaspora still harbouring the thoughts and dreams of creating a separate state within Sri Lanka and how this could be combated, General Fonseka stated that instead of trying to combat them and eliminate those sentiments through fear and intimidation, the people of the country needed to create an atmosphere […]

Watford Costco car park death: Man admits manslaughter

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

A man has admitted killing a shopkeeper who fell from a moving van in Watford. Prasanna Arulchelvam, 34, was found with head injuries at a Costco store car park in the town in May 2013 and died 11 days later. Michael McInerney, 33, of no fixed address, denied murder but the prosecution at Luton Crown Court accepted his guilty plea to manslaughter. Two men were jailed in October for Mr Arulchelvam’s manslaughter. Michael McInerney, 33, denied murder but admitted manslaughter Mr Arulchelvam, known as Nick, came to England from Sri Lanka in 1998 and lived in Grandfield Avenue, Watford, with his wife Shayanthy, 30, and their young son. He died on 6 June 2013 in St Mary’s Hospital in London after being attacked outside the […]

‘Two Nation’ Claim By Chief Minister Wigneswaran

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

By Dayan Jayatilleka – “It is my humble view Sir, if we are to progress as one Country with two nations…”  – (‘Your Excellency Our President, We Need One Country With Two Nations’- CV Wigneswaran, Colombo Telegraph, March 3, 2015) It became known as the Two Nation theory. That was the basis on which Jinnah fought for and obtained the partition of India and Pakistan, with all the carnage that entailed. The two nation theory thus became a dirty word in neighboring India. Chief Minister CV (“Genocide Judge”) Wigneswaran has just enunciated it in the presence of President Maithripala Sirisena on the latter’s first post-election visit to Jaffna. Of course, in order to be fair by Chief MinisterWigneswaran, it must be said that the Tamil political mainstream first […]

ITAK pushes Govt – Seeks immediate political solution to Tamil issue

5th March 2015 // 0 Comments

By Mirudhula Thambiah   The Ilankai Tamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) passed a resolution, at the party’s central committee meeting, urging the government to find an immediate solution to the national question. ITAK has passed various other resolutions too, to be implemented immediately. Accordingly, the party passed resolutions to urge the new government; to consider releasing the lands of Tamil people in the North and the East, also the release of all political prisoners and to strengthen the investigation into missing persons, in keeping with the promises given during the presidential election. They also pressed on the government, to immediately resettle the war affected people living in welfare centres various parts of the North and East. It was discussed during the ITAK central committee meeting that […]