December 2015

Colombo finds new ways to extend detention of Tamil political prisoners

31st December 2015 // 0 Comments

[TamilNet, Thursday, 31 December 2015, 20:39 GMT] The Tamil prisoners, who are being indefinitely detained for several years in the prisons of occupying Colombo, are going to be subjected for prolonged proceedings once more under a new Colombo-based ‘special court’, legal sources in Jaffna said. There are cases where false confessions obtained under torture by the Sri Lankan ‘Terrorist’ Investigation Division (TID) have been already rejected by the district courts in the North and East. These prisoners were awaiting their cases to be dismissed. But, the judiciary of occupying Sri Lanka wants their cases to be addressed again in Colombo. TMVP paramilitary group, operated by the SL military, abducted 44-year-old Jeevaratnam Kanagaratnam from Jaffna at Moraweva in Trincomalee in 2007. He was later handed over […]

TNA happy with move to free some part of lands occupied by army and wants more released

31st December 2015 // 0 Comments

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) today expressed satisfaction with the decision taken by the Government to free some  of the land of Tamil community occupied by the military in parts of the North. The TNA also urged the President to release the remaining lands of Tamil Civilians occupied by the Army and release the political prisoners at the beginning of the New Year. A TNA statement welcomed the release of 701 acres of land occupied by the military in Valikamam North and East. The TNA said that the land was released after TNA leader R. Sampanthan made a request to the President when the President visited the North recently. Following that meeting the President had promised that the request would be considered and as a first step civilians would now be permitted to resettle […]

White-van abductions continue in North with ‘UNP sophistication’

31st December 2015 // 0 Comments

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 30 December 2015, 21:42 GMT] Sri Lankan military intelligence is operating white-van abductions through diaspora and homeland based intermediaries, a well-informed right activists in Jaffna told TamilNet on Wednesday. There have been at least three cases in the recent weeks where abductions were carried out in the Northern Province. The affected parties were given death threats if they chose to go public through other channels than the intermediaries through whom they were released after abductions. The targeted people were Tamil journalists, family members of diaspora activists and traders. None of the affected people were prepared to come open. If they went open, their kith and kin were at the risk of losing their lives in ‘accidents’ or through ‘engineered’ gang violence, they were […]

Sinhala leaders not a bunch of fools!

30th December 2015 // 0 Comments

Sinhala leaders not a bunch of fools! BY Mirudhula Thambiah Tamil National People’s Front (TNPF) Leader Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam said, the Sinhala leaders are not a bunch of fools! They know full well that a federal arrangement is not separation or separatism. On the contrary, a federal arrangement is probably the only way by which separatist desires can be contained if not completely addressed and resolved “The Tamil organizations have repeatedly stated that such an accommodation can be reached through a federal arrangement that recognized the multi-national nature of the country. This was the essence of the Thimpu principles of 1985,” he said. Following are excerpts: ? What is the necessity to suddenly initiate the Tamil People’s Council (TPC) and what is the mandate? A: Well, […]

We need a Federal Constitution

30th December 2015 // 0 Comments

BY Mirudhula Thambiah Former Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian and Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) Leader K. Suresh Premachandran said it is Leader Sampanthan and member Sumanthiran who have broke away from the policies of the coalition TNA, and not Northern Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran. “Sampanthan and Sumanthiran are going against the basic policies of the TNA. They have broken away from the policies. It is not correct to say that the CM is against the party,” he said. Following are excerpts: ?: It is said in criticism that the Tamil People’s Council (TPC) is formed by individuals who have been rejected by the Tamil National Alliance (TNA). You are from one of the TNA constituent parties; tell us if it is an organization […]

Why Mahinda worried about Prageeth, Lasantha murder investigations

30th December 2015 // 0 Comments

Why Mahinda worried about Prageeth, Lasantha murder investigations Today this column records the true story of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s recent photograph released to the Facebook by his son Namal in which Mahinda was seen standing on his head. Namal uploaded this photograph to show that his 70-year-old father was still fit as a fiddle. On the contrary, the common man in society viewed it in a more practical social and political perspective because it was only a few days before this photograph went viral on the social and print media, Mahinda visited the Welikada Prison to see the suspects in the Prageeth Ekneligoda murder or disappearance. Concluding that visit, Mahinda who came out from the Prison entrance told the media, “Military officers are facing the guillotine […]

Another Army officer arrested

30th December 2015 // 0 Comments

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) recently arrested another Army Officer attached to the State Intelligence Service in connection with the abduction and murder of journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda. CID sources said he is a member of the gang who abducted Eknaligoda in 2010. According to sources Abeyratne was a Sergeant during the period when Eknaligoda was abducted and later promoted to the Lieutenant rank. He was previously questioned by the CID in connection with the incident and released after having recorded several statements. In his previous statements, he had said that on the day Eknaligoda was abducted, he came to Colombo from the Giritale Army Camp to obtain quotations for sports equipment. He had said that he first went to Borella to meet a friend and […]

A forgotten UN – LTTE accord during CBK’s presidency

30th December 2015 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative (PR) to the UN, Dr. Rohan Perera, PC, in conversation with Hungarian PR, Katalin Bogyay (Left) and UNSG Ban Ki-moon’s Special Advisor on Myanmar, Vijay Nambiar (Right), formerly of the Indian Foreign Service. By Shamindra Ferdinando   A commemorative, event held at Sri Lanka’s Permanent Mission, in New York, on Dec 14, to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the then Ceylon’s entry into the United Nations, was reminded of sometimes strained relations between Sri Lanka and the global body with special emphasis on the situation, during Mahinda Rajapaksa’s presidency. Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative, in New York, Dr. Amrith Rohan Perera, PC told the gathering: “As in other relationships, the relationship between Sri Lanka and the United Nations has, at times, undergone […]

Sri Lanka gets set to prosecute former regime members

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s law enforcement authorities are close to instituting legal proceedings against ousted president Mahinda Rajapaksa and members of his regime, a government spokesman said. Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne said enough evidence had been uncovered to hold trials against former regime members facing human rights abuse and corruption charges. Independent investigations were made possible as the new government formed after the January 2015 presidential poll restored freedom of action of law enforcement agencies, he told a news conference. “Their misdeeds are now being revealed and they are about to be arrested,” Senaratne said, referring to members of the former Rajapaksa regime. “The main investigations are over and the law enforcement agencies are on the verge of initiating legal action.” Investigations against the Rajapaksa […]

Sri Lanka secures support for Swiss bank account probe

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

ECONOMYNEXT – Switzerland has agreed to support Sri Lanka’s probe into alleged Swiss bank accounts maintained by the ousted former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, a government spokesman said. Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne said police investigations were continuing into allegations that Rajapaksa and his family have wealth hidden in overseas bank accounts. “The Swiss authorities agreed to co-operate and provide information if there are accounts in Swiss banks used for money laundering,” he told a news conference. There were also investigations into alleged accounts held by the Rajapaksas in banks in Dubai and Singapore, Senaratne said. Rajapaksa has rejected allegatiosn that he and his family have foreign bank accounts. (Colombo/December 29, 2015)

TNA welcomes TPC activities

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

TNA welcomes TPC activities Tamil National Alliance (TNA) welcomes the democratic activities taken forward by Tamil People’s Council (TPC). TNA is also ready to consider the reasonable solutions put forth by the TPC for resolving the ethnic issue in Sri Lanka. TNA General Secretary, ITAK Leader and Jaffna District Parliamentarian Mavai Senathiraja said the above during Valikamam- East Development Advisory Committee meeting held at divisional council Puttur head office on Saturday evening led by Northern Provincial Council (NPC) Member A. Paranjyothi. He said this when journalists posed to him a question about the TPC at the end of meeting discussions. He further said, “We have been demanding for solutions to all the fundamental problems of Tamil people including political issues. We have also put forth […]

No one in TPC came through back door says Wiggy

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

No one in the Tamil People’s Council (TPC) came through the back door, Northern Provincial Council Chief Minister and the co-chairman of the Council C.V.Wigneswaran said. He made this remark addressing the second session of the controversial TPC held in Jaffna on Sunday (27). “There has always been a wide gap between political principles and politics in practice. So, there must be a movement to monitor such conduct. Our people are prone to the thinking based on whether this party or that party, whether this leader or that leader. We must go beyond such fallacious thinking. Our leaders may be experts, intelligent people have always fallen a prey to praises, flatteries to the detriment of the Tamil people. So we need a people’s movement to […]

What’s the Deal with Sri Lanka’s War Crimes Court?

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

Several weeks ago, Chandrika Kumaratunga announced that Sri Lanka would set up a special court to deal with alleged wartime abuses. Kumaratunga is the chairperson of the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR); she served as President of Sri Lanka from 1994-2005. The news about a special court came as a surprise to many people. When the initial announcement was made, Kumaratunga stated that the court was expected to begin its work by late December or early January. Yet it remains unclear if that’s still the case. There are a multitude of reasons to be concerned about this process. Kusal Perera, a Colombo-based journalist, says that “no credible investigation with victim participation is possible” given the sustained militarization throughout the country’s Northern and Eastern […]

‘Broken Promises of arresting Killers’ by Maithiri Government.

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

( December 26, 2015, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) The arrest of a main suspect in the Wasim Thajudeen murder case has been temporarily put off over the influence of a government bigwig, political sources say. The bigwig who had urged not to make the arrest during the Budget 2016 vote proceedings, had promised a SLFP bigwig to make the arrest after the final vote on Dec. 19. However, that too, had ended as a broken promise. Death penalty? However, Cabinet spokesman minister Rajitha Senaratne says that several prominent figures in the previous government are likely to get the death penalty after they are revealed to be linked to several serious crimes. Legal action would be sought against these persons as investigations have already concluded, he […]

SL Governor Austin Fernando schemes Sinhala colonization of Batticaloa

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

[TamilNet, Monday, 28 December 2015, 16:14 GMT] Colombo’s colonial Governor to Eastern Province, Austin Fernando, who is a former Defence Secretary of the occupying Sri Lankan military, is working behind the scene to settle Sinhala colonisers in Batticaloa district. A settlement is being schemed close to the railway station at Punaa’nai. The nearby ‘Sinhapura’ military camp situated on Batticaloa – Colombo Road is being transferred into a Sinhala military cantonment. Additional lands to the extent of 1,500 acres have been seized for this military purpose. Both the sides of the road stretching to 1.5 km along the main road have been fenced off with barbed-wire. There were only five Sinhala families at Pu’naanai before 1990. Now, 29 families have been settled down. The SL Governor […]

Extending the democratic revolution

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

by Vikramabahu Karunaratne ( December 26, 2015, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Nava Sama Samaja party anniversary will be held at New Town Hall, Colombo on December 30 starting from 2 pm. Party believes that participation within the democratic mass struggle to evict fascistic Mahinda regime is a great experience. This anniversary conference will be an opportunity to explain the united action front experience and how it could be compared to other fronts Sama Samajists have entered in the course of several decades of Sama Samaja history. Our experience is a part of the Trotskyites praxis that goes back to the days of German fascism. Duality in this problem could be seen today. On one hand there is the need to unite working class movement as […]

Sumanthiran hits out at Vigneswaran

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

TNA Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran said the TNA friendly people were being led astray by Chief Minister of Northern Province C.V. Vigneswaran. Commenting on the Tamil People’s Council established recently under the Chief Minister, the parliamentarian told the media during the Tsunami commemoration in Jaffna that the Tamil community would not desert the TNA or its leadership. He pointed out that they would take a decision on the politicians who attempt to overlook the TNA. The parliamentarian said the Tamil People’s Committee was a clear indication of the Chief Minister’s anti-TNA movement. Meanwhile, TNA leader R. Sampanthan and the Chief Minister had met at the TNA’s Legal Advisor K.Kanageshwaran’s residence in Bambalapitiya to sort out the differences. Although the media was not allowed the cover the […]

‘Tamil Makkal Peravai Will Be A Watchdog of Tamil Politics’

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO: The Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Tamil-majority Northern Province, C V Wigneswaran, has clarified that the Tamil Makkal Peravai (TMP), which he has floated, is not a rival to the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), but is a non-partisan, civil society watchdog meant to see that the basic interests of the Lankan Tamils are upheld by their leaders and not compromised for petty gains. Speaking at the second formal meeting of the TMP in Jaffna on Sunday, Wigneswaran said that given its broad-based, grassroots character, the TMP will help the TNA and other Tamil political parties take the right decisions and the right approach to the problems of the Tamils. He pointed that traditionally, the powers-that-be in Lanka have tried to co-opt and neutralise sections […]

SLMC inquiry on former JMO

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) officials have initiated an inquiry on the former Judicial Medical officer of Colombo, Ananda Samarasekera who performed the first autopsy on the remains of ruggerite Wasim Thajudeen, after they received a court order, Medical Council chairman Professor Carlo Fonseka said. Colombo Additional Magistrate Nishantha Peris directed the SLMC to inquire into the previous report submitted by former JMO Prof. Ananda Samarasekara and the committee members who participated in the investigations. The probe will look into why the former medical officer took two and half years to submit the JMO report. The first postmortem on the remains of Thajudeen, whose burnt body was found inside a car near Shalika Sports ground at Narahenpita on May 17, 2012, concluded that the death […]

TNA may consider action on Sidharthan

29th December 2015 // 0 Comments

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) may consider taking action against Parliamentarian Dharmalingham Sidharthan for joining the Tamil People’s Council. Illangai Thamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) General Secretary Mavai Senathirajah has called for an inquiry to be conducted on Sidharthan who contested the last Parliamentary election under the ITAK ticket. ITAK is the main political party in the TNA and Sidharthan, leader of the People’s Liberation Front (PLOTE), entered Parliament after winning a seat through the TNA at the August election. Senathirajah has said that Sidharthan should be asked to explain as to why he joined the Tamil People’s Council without the approval of the TNA. There have been concerns among members of the TNA that the Tamil People’s Council is looking at being an alternative Tamil political party. Northern Province […]

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