28th November 2015

MDMK, Vaiko celebrate Prabha’s birth anniversary

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

South Indian regional party Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) celebrated the 61st birth anniversary of slain Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) founder Vellupillai Prabhakaran on Thursday, 26 November. Prabhakaran was born into a middle class family in the coastal town of Velvettiturai in northern Sri Lanka in 1954. The architect of Asia’s longest-running civil war had vowed never to be taken alive, but Sri Lankan army soldiers killed the island’s most wanted and most elusive man in 2009. For 37 years, LTTE Chief Prabhakaran had done one thing better than anything else on his fearsome resume: avoid capture. But on May 19, 2009, there was little doubt about the elusive Tiger chief’s whereabouts, even though an LTTE official denied he was dead. The MDMK […]

Supreme Court of Canada – Has ruled that federal immigration laws denying entry to human smugglers are unconstitutional.

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

In two cases involving ships carrying Tamil refugees to Canada’s shores, the Supreme Court has ruled that federal immigration laws denying entry to human smugglers are unconstitutional. Those laws could be used to bar from Canada or prosecute anyone who performs a humanitarian act, including passengers helping one another or family members giving aid to their relatives, the court said in unanimous rulings written by Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin. And that is out of step with the laws’ stated purposes and Canada’s international obligations for refugee protection, she said. One of the laws criminalized aiding people coming to Canada without valid documentation. The other law banned people smuggling in the context of transnational crime. Under the former Conservative government’s interpretation of the immigration laws, “a […]

Premechandran urges general amnesty for Tamil detainees

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

“I don’t see any difference between the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) – both were armed militants. Both organisations wanted to liberate their people,” stresses Leader of the Eelam People’s Revolutionary Front and member of Tamil National Alliance Suresh Premechandran.  “If a general amnesty was granted to the JVP, why can’t the Government do the same with Tamil detainees? After all both groups were involved in an armed intrusion,” Premechandran pointed out. “How do you separate these two parties?” he queries, adding, “The JVP wanted to liberate  Sri Lanka for the Sinhala people. The LTTE wanted to liberate the Tamil people and therefore wanted a separate State. Both were armed militants. You can brand the LTTE as terrorists but […]

Awaiting Justice ForTrinco Five

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

By James Ross The bright white sandy beach in Sri Lankan’s northeastern town of Trincomalee is as beautiful as any urban seafront anywhere. It was midday in October, with the sun too high and hot for tourists and local residents alike. A young Sri Lankan raised in New Zealand told me she had bravedthe undertow for a swim, unaware nor having any reason to be aware of the cold-blooded murders there nearly 10 years ago.  On the evening of January two, 2006, while many people celebrated the New Year on the beach, five ethnic Tamil students were fatally shot at point-blank range near the road running parallel to the shore. Two others were seriously wounded.The local authorities quickly claimed the victims were Liberation Tigers of […]

David Cameron meets President Sirisensa at the Commonwealth summit in Malta

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

Britain will give Sri Lanka £6.6m over three years to help the battle-scarred country continue its recovery from a long civil war. The money will be backed up by a non-resident defence attache and access to British armed forces training to help with military reform. The aid will also help people displaced from their towns and villages during the bloodshed to return home. READ MORE Tamils call for Sri Lankan President to be tried for war crimes Tamil leads Sri Lanka opposition for first time in 32 years Four Sri Lankan soldiers held in connection with missing journalist The rebel Tamil Tigers were defeated six years ago after decades of war, but there have been serious concerns over alleged human rights abuses. The new President, […]

Northern schools closed on 27th November 2015.

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

All schools in the Northern Provincial Council were closed on the directive of Provincial education authorities. However, several Sinhala medium schools remained open last morning, as such schools had not not been informed by the provincial authorities. The Provincial Education Ministry informed the school principals to keep their schools closed yesterday as the death of a school student in Jaffna may trigger tension in the province, This student committed suicide in Kokuvil, Jaffna on Thursday over the failure by the authorities to release all Tamil political prisoners. He committed suicide by jumping in front of a train in Kokuvil.  Great Heroes’ Day passes off peacefully in Jaffna Nov 27 (ENS) Great Heroes’ Day (Maaveerar Naal), which commemorates dead Tamil Tiger cadres, passed off peacefully in […]

HRCSL writes to AG, raises concerns on detainees

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) has written to Attorney General (AG) Y J Wijayatilake, conveying to him its grave concern about the rights of the detainees and remandees held under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and the Emergency Regulations and called upon him to take necessary measures to ensure the protection of the rights of these detainees and remandees. The Commission has called for the immediate release of those held in detention or remand for a long period of time without charges and against whom there is no credible evidence. The Commission has further called upon the Attorney General to review the cases of those indicted and to withdraw those cases which are solely based on confessions made to police officers, cases where no credible evidence exist and cases which are relatively minor. In […]

56 Persons Convicted Under PTA and 204 LTTE Suspects Currently Undergoing Trial in Courts Wont be Released Announces Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

by Saman Indrajith Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, PC, yesterday said the government wouldn’t release those who had been convicted on terrorism charges. He stressed that those who had been charged in courts, too, wouldn’t released. The President’s Counsel was responding to an allegation that the release of hardcore LTTE terrorists would pose a serious threat to national security. Addressing the media at the Parliamentary complex, MP Rajapakse said that among the LTTE cadres in custody were 56 found guilty of committing offences listed under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA). The minister said that the government was considering the release of only 24 LTTE cadres against whom charges hadn’t been filed but kept in custody in connection with minor offences. The minister said that of […]

Placing Too Much of Trust in Diaspora Groups so Early May Lead to Blunders?

28th November 2015 // 0 Comments

By M.S.M.Ayub It is doubtful whether the government has got its priorities right in respect of reconciliation, given the emphasis it has placed on matters pertaining to the Tamil diaspora. Soon after the January 8 regime change, Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera had planned a diaspora festival to be held in December which was later put off indefinitely apparently due to possible protests by the southern nationalists. And now the government has removed 8 diaspora organizations and 267 persons from a list of 16 organisations and 424 persons including several Sinhalese and 30 women designated by the previous regime “in terms of the United Nations Security Council resolution 1373 which set out strategies to combat terrorism and to control terrorist funding.” It is true that there […]