June 2015

Crossovers Begin: 1000 TNA Members Join UNP

29th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Merely days after the announcement of the general election, one thousand Tamil National Alliance members in the Ampara District joined the United National Party. They accepted membership of the party from its National Organizer Daya Gamage. Accordingly, 400 TNA members joined the UNP at a function in Thirukkovil and 600 others joined at a function in Vinayagapuram. The election will be held on August 17. The TNA will contest alone from the electoral districts in Northern and Eastern Provinces. Meanwhile, the UNP will also contest alone.

Ranil’s Challenge to Mahinda & Mahinda to announce future plans tomorrow

29th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa will announce his future plans tomorrow (July 1). The former President’s office yesterday invited the media to Weeraketiya, Medamulana for the first official media briefing given by the former President since his defeat at the January, 2015 presidential election. A spokesperson said that a special announcement would be made regarding the former SLFP leader’s strategy.  President Maithripala Sirisena met his predecessor late last week at the President’s Wijerama Mawatha residence though both parties denied having had a one-on-one at the official residence of the Speaker. SLFP seniors remained tight-lipped about the former President’s strategy. (SF) Ranil challenges MR to defeat him Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe challenged former president Mahinda Rajapaksa to defeat him if possible after securing the prime ministerial candidature. Unless […]

Sri Lanka’s Sirisena ‘under strong pressure’ for new polls

29th June 2015 // 0 Comments

President Maithripala Sirisena recently dissolved parliament, paving the way for fresh elections in mid-August. DW speaks to Sri Lankan political analyst Jehan Perera about the reasons behind the move. Sirisena issued the notice at midnight on Friday, June 26, announcing the election for the 225-member Parliament for August 17, some 10 months ahead of schedule. The new parliament would be convened on September 2, officials said. Sirisena’s decision came after PM Ranil Wickremesinghe pressed for elections because the ruling United National Party (UNP) lacked sufficient majority to pass reforms. Sirisena won the January presidential election against Mahinda Rajapaksa on promises of full-scale political reforms, which included reducing powers of the presidency and changes to the electoral system, but he has faced resistance from lawmakers in […]

Political leapfrogs ahead of nominations?

29th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Ahead of nominations for the 2015 Parliamentary election that concludes on 15 July, several politicians are expected to change allegiances, political observers and analysts predict. Major splits are expected during election season, especially within the SLFP, with several senior party members expected to throw in their lot with the former President if he decides to contest elections separately. The SLFP is in frantic negotiations to keep the party together at the forthcoming polls, but speculation was rife yesterday that UPFA General Secretary and Kaduwela MP Susil Premajayantha would join the ‘Mahinda faction’ of the party. Premajayantha, as General Secretary of the former ruling alliance, holds the rights to the UPFA party registration and betel leaf symbol. The Mahinda faction is also in possession of the former People’s Alliance registration and chair symbol, and could also field a list of candidates […]

Parliament Dissolved: An Initial Assessment

29th June 2015 // 0 Comments

By S. I. Keethaponcalan – Parliament was dissolved on June 26, 2015 and the general election has been scheduled to take place on August 17. Under normal circumstances, attention would have turned to strengths and weaknesses of the ruling and opposition parties. This time, however, everyone wants to know what would be the next move of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, because his decisions and actions could very well determine the outcome of the election and the next government. Rajapaksa wants to be nominated as the prime ministerial candidate because he believes that he has the popular support to win the election. Indeed, he seems to have the capacity to win this election as a Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) candidate. He has been supporting the […]

Army soldier sentenced to death over Mirusuvil massacre

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Army soldier sentenced to death over Mirusuvil massacre A former staff sergeant attached to Sri Lanka Army who was found guilty for the murder of eight Tamil civilians in Mirusuvil, Jaffna in 2000 was today sentenced to death by the Colombo High Court after a 13-year-trial. High Court Judges Lalith Jayasuriya and Preethi Padman Surasena found the first accused, former Staff Sergeant R.M. Sunil Ratnayake of the army Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol (LRRP) guilty of 17 counts including unlawful assembly with common intention to cause injury and murder of eight persons. The Court further imposed a fine of Rs.51,000 on the accused and observed that he would be liable to a seven-month-imprisonment on default of the fine. Four other accused Second Lieutenant R.W. Senaka Munasinghe, […]

The soliders separate the daughters from the surrendered parents: pulithdevan wife tearfull speech

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

The soliders separate the daughters from the surrendered parents: pulithdevan wife tearfull speech Pulidevan wife reveal the secret during her exclusive interview to lankasri 24 news that the Srilankan soldiers separate the daughters from the parents who surrendered during the civil war. Tears at the UN ! eyewitnesses : Son of Natesan & Pulidevan’s wife ! The names of several LTTE members who had surrendered to the army during the final stages of the war in 2009 were revealed at an event held in Geneva on the sidelines of the UN Human Rights Council meeting. Their accounts cast fresh doubt on the Sri Lankan government’s claim that the rebels were killed by their own supporters and add to a growing body of evidence of war […]

The srilankan soldiers called the LTTE Leaders by using tamil language – malaravan wife

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

The ltte Malaravan’s wife gave a special interview to lankasri. she told that, I personally saw many  ltte leaders  surrender to the army , including Ltte Ezhilan.   some soldiers in the Srilankan army were fluent in tamil and  they call the  name of the ltte leaders in  tamil only. And they slammed  me. We are going to surrender – the last word of my father: Nadesan son Nadesan’s son gave a exclusive interview to lankasri. In that he told  my fathers last word to me is All the arrangements were made. we are going to surrender. �with irrepressible tears

Diaspora group intensifies moves against Lanka

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

A diaspora organisation based in the United States has intensified its campaign against Sri Lanka in an attempt to refer the country to the International Criminal Court. The Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) led by former LTTE member V. Rudrakumaran, said that a signature campaign to urge the United Nations to Refer Sri Lanka to the International Criminal Court for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide committed against Tamils by the Sri Lankan State, has reached over 200,000 signatures as of June 22nd. It also said that in addition to the on-line signature campaign, numerous events are taking place in different countries around the world to collect signatures. “Volunteers are going house to house to collect signatures. Additionally they collect signatures outside places of worship, in […]

US report slams Lanka’s rights record last year

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Several human rights violations had taken place last year in Sri Lanka , according to the annual human rights report of the US State Department released yesterday (Thursday). The Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2014 noted that the major human rights problems reported over the year were: attacks on, and harassment of, civil society activists, journalists, and persons viewed as sympathizers of the LTTE by individuals allegedly tied to the government; involuntary disappearances, arbitrary arrest and detention, torture, abuse of detainees, rape, and other forms of sexual and gender-based violence committed by police and security forces; and widespread impunity for a broad range of human rights abuses. The report also noted that involuntary disappearances and unlawful killings continued to diminish in comparison with the […]

Names of LTTE cares who surrendered revealed

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

The names of several LTTE members who had surrendered to the army during the final stages of the war in 2009 were revealed at an event held in Geneva on the sidelines of the UN Human Rights Council meeting. Relatives of LTTE leaders, including Nadesan and Pulitheven, explained the circumstances that led to their surrender and their subsequent disappearance at the meeting in Geneva. The wife of Malavaran, an LTTE member who was among several who had reportedly surrendered to the army, said that soldiers who could speak in Tamil had mentioned the names of those who had surrendered in May 2009. She mentioned some of the names and the rank they held in the LTTE, adding that since then they have not been heard of. Nadesan’s son […]

Sri Lanka’s concept of accountability not in accordance of international standards – BHRC Chair

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka’s concept of accountability has not been in accordance with international standards, said the Chair of the BAR Human Rights Committee for England and Wales, whilst calling on Sri Lanka to take a “first step by providing a list of names of all those detained.” Speaking to Tamil Guardian at the 29th session of the UN Human Rights Council, Kirsty Brimelow QC, said, “So far the Sri Lankan government’s concept of accountability has not been in accordance with international standards. Truth, justice and reparation equals accountability. This means putting victims at the heart of investigations and providing them and witnesses robust protection so that they can give their evidence without fear. If Sri Lanka’s national institutions lack independent functioning so that impunity continues, it […]

Sri Lanka continues to appoint suspected war criminals as diplomats

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

The Sri Lankan government has appointed two senior army commanders, who are both suspected of committing mass atrocities, as ambassadors. The Foreign Ministry announced that former army commander Jagath Jayasuriya and former army chief Daya Ratnayake have been nominated as envoys to Brazil and Pakistan respectively. Both held senior positions during the last phase of the armed conflict, which saw grave violations of international humanitarian law. Giving diplomatic posts to army officers is a trend initiated by former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, which saw suspected war criminals in the military, including Shavendra Silva and Jagath Dias, given diplomatic posts, which would provide them with diplomatic immunity while travelling. The appointments casts further doubt on how genuine the government’s apparent efforts to engage with Tamils are, with victims of the crimes long demanding […]

Samaraweera defends talks with diaspora groups

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera on Wednesday defended the Sri Lankan government’s policy of engaging with Tamil diaspora groups. His Ministerial colleague and Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) leader Patali Champika Ranawaka had earlier said the government should engage with only those groups that renounced the demand for separatism. Asked about Ranawaka’s comment, Samaraweera told a press conference that he had been doing the same for the last several months. But “you can’t get them to renounce violence without talking to them. You have to talk to them and discuss with them.” Conceding that there were others who still believed in the cause of separatism, Mr Samaweera said: “We are willing to [talk] them. Finally, if they still persist in pursuing their agenda of separatism, of course, we won’t have anything to do with […]

Diaspora project had the backing of Mahinda – Mangala

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Diaspora project had the backing of MR, MS – Mangala ‘Even Gotabhaya was involved in South African initiative’ By Shamindra Ferdinando Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera yesterday declared that the on-going efforts to reach out to the influential Tamil Diaspora had the backing of the Maithripala Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government. Addressing the media at the Information Department,  Samaraweera strongly denied accusations that he had been pursuing a reconciliation project of his own though it being inimical to national interests. “In fact, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa had initiated the project meant to win over those who were hostile to Sri Lanka,” FM Samaraweera said, pointing out that the then Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa too was involved in the post-war South African initiative. Senior South African representatives dealt with both […]

Girls surrendered with their parent were taken away separately: Pulithevan’s widow testifies in Geneva |

26th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Girls surrendered with their parent were taken away separately: Pulithevan’s widow testifies in Geneva | Girls surrendered with their parent were taken away sepa… The Army  asked the girls to surrender with their parents, but after surrendering they were taken away separately by the Army, said the widow of Pulithevan, who off… View on tamildiplomat.com Preview by Yahoo My father told me, “They have asked to surrender to the Army with white flags” : Nadesan’s son in Geneva | My father told me, “They have asked to surrender to the … The Leader of the Political Division of the LTTE, P.Nadesan contacted me over the telephone in the morning of 2009 May 18th, before surrendering to the Army, and to… View on tamildiplomat.com Preview by […]

Sri Lanka’s Punguduthivu: security forces and police of having close connections with some gangs and the paramilitaries.

25th June 2015 // 0 Comments

Punguduthivu Island, 20 kilometres southwest of Jaffna, was the scene of a gang rape and murder of a teenage student, Vithya Sivalohanathan, on May 13 that triggered mass protests in the war-ravaged north of Sri Lanka. The demonstrations spread to the eastern province as well. The protests reflected widespread anger over the horrific crime, as well as the unbearable social conditions and de facto military rule in the north. This repressive situation has continued since the end of nearly three decades of war by successive governments against the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The LTTE was militarily defeated in May 2009. On May 25, President Maithripala Sirisena flew to Jaffna and met with the murdered girl’s mother and Northern Provincial Council Chief Minister […]

Opposition must join us to offer an acceptable solution to the Tamil people!

25th June 2015 // 0 Comments

“I urge the Honourable Leader of Opposition to join us in this journey of confidence building, reconciliation and development. Join us to address the real grievances and concerns of people of all communities, especially the minority communities in the North and the East. This is the surest way to ensure that terrorism will not raise its head in this country again.” Mangala Samaraweera, the Minister of External Affairs said today.   Responding to a question raised by the Leader of the Opposition regarding the latest US State Department Report titled ‘Country Reports on Terrorism and Patterns of Global Terrorism’, Samaraweera said;  Following the wide ranging consultations held, the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission states very clearly in its Report, and I quote: “The conflict could have been avoided […]

Importance Of India For Sri Lanka

24th June 2015 // 0 Comments

By Rajasingham Jayadevan – Importance of India for Sri Lanka and the need for Sri Lanka to maintain friendly relations with India The relationship between India and Sri Lanka is an inter twined historical bond. The underlying commonalities between the two nations and their geographical positioning, even after the historical geological drifts of which Sri Lanka is of miniscule part, have not changed the intrinsic relationship. In the post Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) scenario, ethnic tensions in Sri Lanka have slow phased the official relationship between the two nations. Politically, it froze to an alarming scale during the outgoing autocratic confrontational familial rule of Mahendra Percy Rajapaksa. The bilateral relationship between the two nations dipped to the lowest, undermining the much needed regional cohesiveness […]

SLFP will suffer absolute defeat if Mahinda contests

24th June 2015 // 0 Comments

SLFP will suffer absolute defeat if Mahinda contests – SB Minister of Rural Economic Affairs S.B. Dissanayake says that the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) would suffer an absolute defeat if former President Mahinda Rajapaksa contests the upcoming General Election. Responding to a query from a journalist at a press conference held at SLFP Headquarters in Colombo today, he stated that the party would especially lose the minority votes if Rajapaksa contests the polls. Therefore, Dissanayake said, that according to his calculations, if Mahinda Rajapaksa enters the election the SLFP would suffer an absolute defeat. While emphasizing that the former President’s support it necessary for the victory of the party, the minister reminded that Rajapaksa had declared he would not let the party to split. […]

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