May 2015

War Crimes – ‘Govt & LTTE’ courier to expose all

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

Former Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Ampara District Parliamentarian Chandra Nehru Chandrakanthan, who acted as a courier between the then government and the LTTE, is preparing to present evidence regarding human rights violations which were allegedly committed during the closing stages of the war. Although many international and internal investigations were initiated into such allegations, he insists that the grievances of the Tamil people have as yet not been meaningfully addressed. He adds that he will definitely submit evidence at an internal investigation into the events surrounding the last few days of the war. Besides expressing these views to the Tamil media, Chandra Nehru has also made these comments on a popular Tamil Television programme recently, confessing that he acted as a courier between the then […]

GTF ready for direct talks on Tamil issues

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

The Global Tamil Forum (GTF), an influential diaspora group based in London, says it is ready for direct talks with anyone to resolve Tamil issues. The GTF was responding to a question posed by The Sunday Leader when asked if it willing to have direct talks with the Government on the Tamil issue. GTF spokesman Suren Surendiran said that the GTF has so far not been invited for any talks in Sri Lanka by the Government. “No no invitations were received for direct talks, remember GTF is still a proscribed organisation in Sri Lanka,” he added. The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation of South Africa, Nomaindiya Mfeketo had a series of meetings with representatives of International Tamil Diaspora organisations from Sri Lanka, including […]

Freedom for 278 political prisoners

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

Two hundred and seventy eight political prisoners whose release the Tamil community has been agitating for several years will soon be granted their freedom following talks with the Tamil National Alliance, party frontliner M.A. Sumanthiran MP told the Sunday Observer. The TNA will this week discuss with Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe the procedural methods and the priority categories of prisoners to be released, he said, adding that a meeting scheduled for last week was postponed due to unforeseen circumstances. Many prisoners have not been served any indictments but arrested on mere suspicion, while many others have been arrested for minor offences, he said.The TNA after compiling the details held talks with President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. They are optimistic that the release […]

No nominations for cross-overs

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

No politician who changes his party allegiance will be given nominations, according to an agreement reached between President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. This decision was arrived at to herald a new political culture in the country, it is reliably understood. The UNP-SLFP Government, a joint political venture could implement a tremendous volume of work, and letting parliamentarians cross-over to political parties of their choice could jettison the joint efforts, spokesmen for the two parties are reported to have said. Speculation is rife that a number of politicians of the two major parties of whom the majority represent the present Parliament, are ready to shift allegiance. Political parties have failed to reach a consensus on the 20th Amendment since the UNP, JVP, NWU, […]

Differences Of Opinion Still In TNA

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

By Waruni Karunarathne Tamil National Alliance (TNA) continues to experience differences of opinion within the coalition parties but is making an effort to get together on common matters. TNA MP Suresh Premachandran told The Sunday Leader that coalition parties of the TNA are still having differences of opinion but making an effort to work together on common issues such as finding a solution to Tamil political issue. “Right now internally within the coalition parties we are having discussions related to the upcoming parliamentary election and as to what stand we will take. The TNA is also having discussions related to this. Even though more than six years have elapsed since the war ended, Tamil people still have unresolved issues – resettlement is not done to […]

Delimitation Commission unjust – Mano

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

By Niranjala Ariyawansha Leader of the Democratic People’s Front, former Parliamentarian Mano Ganeshan, said that they expect President Maithripala Sirisena to provide them with a private pledge tomorrow, Monday, that determining new provincial and other boundary limitations by the Elections Delimitations Commission will be carried out in a reasonable manner. He said they have had serious doubts due to the way in which the Delimitation Commission has acted so far. He added that if the government intends submitting to parliament the 20th Amendment to the Constitution, which includes electoral reforms, on Wednesday 3 June, the President’s pledge on this issue should be received prior to that. He said that in the circumstances, they intend meeting the President tomorrow, Monday, to discuss the issue with him. […]

Jaffna rape incident SIU to submit report on police lethargy?

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

BY Pranavesh Sivakumar The Police Special Investigations Unit (SIU) is investigating possible lapses on the part of Police officers in connection with probes into the brutal rape and murder of an 18-year-old girl in Jaffna a fortnight ago. Police Media Spokesman ASP Ruwan Gunasekera said at a media briefing yesterday that the SIU was trying to ascertain whether there was any negligence on the part of the police in the initial investigations process. “The SIU has not forwarded the report as yet. Hence, after the SIU produces the report relating to the conduct of certain senior police officers, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) will then decide what action should be taken” he added. He explained that disciplinary action by the IGP will depend on the […]

Govt. contemplates special police division To investigate violence against women

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

In the wake of the brutal gang rape and murder of an 18-year-old schoolgirl in Pungudutivu, Jaffna and the subsequent public outrage, the government is contemplating setting up a special police division to investigate complaints of violence against women and children. State Minister of Children’s Affairs, Rosy Senanayake, speaking to The Nation, said discussions were being held on establishing such a division, which would be headed by a Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Police and comprising specially trained police personnel. Minister Senanayake also said as part of an ‘anti-rape’ initiative, discussions had also been held on the possibility of establishing a task force to investigate complaints of rape. This unit will be functioning under the special police division mentioned above. It is also due to […]

DS raises alarm over drugs and crimes in Jaffna

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

One month before the gruesome rape and murder of a Poonkuduthivu schoolgirl, Jaffna’s District Secretary in a report had urged the police to act fast to check the rising incidence of sexual abuse, exploitation and illicit sale of liquor and drugs in the district. Describing schoolchildren’s new found addiction to drugs and banned substances as a “well-planned strategy” aimed at disrupting the social fabric of the north, the report sent to Jaffna’s Deputy Inspector General highlights the alarming rate at which crime is rising in the peninsula. The report is the outcome of a discussion held by the District Child Development Committee headed by the DS. Drawing the attention of the police to illegal liquor sales that “continue unabated” in many areas in the district, the report notes […]

Island of fear

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

The rape and murder of 18-year-old Vidya Sivaloganathan in Pungudutivu has led to many families in her village, Veeramalai, fleeing for safety in other towns. Families with young girls are especially fearful. The victim’s family too is seeking to move away from the island of Pungudutivu. Veeramalai resident Ganesh Vigeswaran, 47, said he had decided to go and live with his in-laws in Batticaloa because of the volatile situation in his village. Mr. Vigneswaran, a father of three girls who, like the murdered Vidya, are students of Pungudutivu Tamil Vidyalam said he could not be certain of his children’s safety any longer. “I have three young girls aged 18, 19 and 21 and I don’t feel safe,” he said. It is learnt that many residents […]

‘Death Sentence to Rapists of Children’ says Londoners – PHOTOS

31st May 2015 // 0 Comments

A prayer meeting was held at the Trinity Hall in EastHam today at 5.00 pm by London Tamil organisations to remember the rape and death of School girl Vithiya in Sri Lanka. Mr Sockalingam Yogalingam TGTE MP, Mr Nimalan Seevaratnam TGTE MP, Leading Human Rights Solicitor Vasuki Muruhathas and others spoke on what we must do to stop these happening in future. Even during this week two rape incidents were reported in the Northern Province, one in the Kayts and the other in Kilinochchi.  Police Media Spokesman ASP Ruwan Gunasekera had said at a media briefing yesterday that the SIU was trying to ascertain whether there was any negligence on the part of the police in the initial investigations process. Organiser Mr Murugananthan spoke on behalf […]

Sri Lanka: The Years of Blood

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

The following article with images, was originally published by a blogger who blogs at thecarthaginiansolution.wordpress.com, in last year. CLICK TO VIEW FULL ARTICLE WITH PHOTOS     In late 2012, workers digging foundations for a new wing in Matale Hospital unearthed partial skeletons of more than 150 people. Of the various theories that sought to explain how this mass grave came to be, the one that most people instinctively thought might be true was that this was the final resting place of victims of death squads from 2nd JVP insurgency, which from 1987 to 1989 almost brought the Sri Lankan State to total collapse. The counter-insurgency (COIN) campaign, which in turn destroyed the JVP had few equals (except perhaps the1990s Algerian counter-insurgency campaign and the India’s […]

We need a Federal system in a united Sri Lanka

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

By Mirudhula Thambiah Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) leader parliamentarian Suresh Premachandran said, people of the North and East fought for their rights. Although the LTTE is no more that does not mean the conflict is over. “We welcome the stand of the government on appointing a Presidential Task Force for Reconciliation under the former President Chandrika Kumaratunga, and we feel it may be a new step but they are yet to begin the task,” he said. Following are excerpts: ? What is your opinion about changing the victory day to Ranawiru parade day A: I don’t see any change! Ministers are expressing various views about changing the name. One says it should be celebrated as the Security Forces Day since they kept the […]

Colombo reluctant to demilitarise

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

Study by U.S.-based institute criticises the government for operating with an ‘old mindset’. Notwithstanding the four-month-old Sirisena government’s repeated assertions of attaching priority to ethnic reconciliation in the country, the regime has been found to be “reluctant” in demilitiarising the Northern and Eastern Provinces, where Tamils live in large numbers, according to a study of Oakland Institute, a U.S.-based policy think tank. As part of the study, the organisation has prepared two reports, which were made public on Thursday. The Hindu was the only newspaper in Asia to have been provided exclusives of the reports.Govt. informedThe Institute made it clear that its study (January 2014-April 2015) was carried out “with the knowledge but not the cooperation of the Sri Lankan government.” One of the reports, […]

Northern PC Mulls desalination project

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

The Northern Provincial Council is actively examining the prospects of implementing a sizable desalination project aimed at a permanent solution to the recurring crisis of drinking water in the province. A special meeting at which this issue was discussed at length, chaired by Chief Minister C.V.Wigneswaran, was held at the Jaffna Public Library Auditorium last Wednesday with participants including Tamil National Alliance Parliamentarians Mavai S Senathiraja, S. Sritharan, Northern Provincial Council Ministers, Councilors, Northern Provincial Council Opposition Leader S.Thavarasa and many others contributing actively to the discussion. An American expert Nicolai who was at the meeting expressed his views on converting the sea water into drinking water. According to sources, the Maruthankerni sea area in the North was suggested as the ideal location for the […]

‘silent war’ as Tamil land is appropriated by army

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka accused of waging ‘silent war’ as Tamil land is appropriated by army US thinktank claims post-conflict harmony undermined by military occupation in north and east, combined with land grabs that have marginalised Tamil people Six years after the end of Sri Lanka’s long and bloody civil war, a “silent” conflict is being waged across the island, with tens of thousands of government troops continuing to occupy the north and east and the army expanding its property developments on land belonging to displaced Tamils, a new report claims. Although the 26-year-long conflict between the majority Sinhalese government and Tamil separatists finally ended in 2009 with the defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam (LTTE), the study by the US-based thinktank the Oakland Institute […]

This Divided Island: Stories From The Sri Lankan War

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

By Charles Sarvan – Tolerance is not a human characteristic. A small difference in skin-colour, language or religion has been enough to prompt one group of Sapiens to set about attacking and exterminating another group. – Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, Yuval Noah Harari, Professor of History, Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Act 2 of Shakespeare’s ‘Richard the Second’ contains an eulogy on England marked by rhetorical repetition: this “sceptred” isle, this other Eden, this fortress against the hand of war, this happy breed of men, this blessed plot, this earth, this England. Subramanian employs the same deictic term with reference to Sri Lanka in his book’s title but with irony; not to laud but to lament. South Indian Subramanian paid visits to Sri Lanka […]

TGTE Welcomes Fonseka’s Willingness To Face War Crime Trials: Urges Him To Avail To UN’s OISL

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) is pleased to hear of former Army Commander Field Marshall Sarath Fonseka’s interview to the Guardian newspaper that he would welcome war crimes investigation to prove his innocence for the mass killing of Tamils and rape of Tamil women by the Sri Lankan Security Forces. “There were no rapes, no torture during my command during the war,” Fonseka said in the interview. United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Mr. Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein is to submit his report to the UN Human Rights Council in September about his findings regarding these killings and recommendations for justice. “We are pleased about Sarath Fonseka’s commitment to answer to these mass killings and rape,” said TGTE’s Minister for International Affairs Mr. […]

Sri Lankan Govt. Systematically Violating Human Rights Of Tamils & Other Minorities: New Report

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

A new report on the state of human rights in Sri Lanka finds that a silent war continues in which thousands of Tamils, mostly Hindus and Christians, are still internally displaced and subject to military occupation and fierce discrimination by the predominantly Buddhist Sinhalese majority. The new report “The Long Shadow of War: Struggle for Justice in Post War Sri Lanka” by the US-based think tank the Oakland Institute finds; 6 years after the end of the war, the traditional Tamil homeland is still under heavy military occupation by at least 160,000 mostly Sinhalese soldiers, one for every 6 Tamil civilians. The army has engaged in large-scale property development, running luxury tourist resorts and business ventures on land seized from local populations. Thousands of Tamil families […]

Institutions For Administration Of Justice Are Far More Important Than The Military

29th May 2015 // 0 Comments

By Basil Fernando – The rape and murder of a 17-year-old schoolgirl two weeks ago, has given rise to the biggest protest seen in North in recent times. The police have announced that 9 persons have been arrested and are been investigated. DNA samples have been taken and sent for examination. Meanwhile, the President of Sri Lanka publicly stated that the case would be tried in a special court to avoid the usual delay and to ensure justice speedily. This promise by the President is quite welcome. We hope that the investigations will be completed soon and the Attorney General will also file the indictments soon and the trial will commence. While this move is being appreciated, it needs to be emphasized that a speedy […]

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