July 2016

Missing 14 year old from Harrow has been found

15th July 2016 // 0 Comments

A school girl from Harrow who was reported missing two days ago has now been found. Sabina Krishnapilla who went missing on Wednesday (July 13) near Harrow Arts Centre on Uxbridge Road, Hatch End, is now safe and well. The Metropolitan Police have thanked the media and the public for their assistance in the missing person appeal. Concerns were raised for the 14-year-old girl who suffers from a serious medical condition that requires regular medication. A statement from the Met Police said: “Police were appealing to trace missing 14-year-old Sabina Krishnapilla. “Sabina has been found safe and well. “We thank the media and the public for their assistance with this appeal.” Source : http://www.getwestlondon.co.uk/news/west-london-news/missing-teenage-school-girl-harrow-11617545

Missing 14-year-old from Harrow

14th July 2016 // 0 Comments

Police in Harrow are appealing for the public’s help to find a vulnerable missing girl Sabina Krishnapillai, 14 was last seen at 10:00hrs on Wednesday, 13 July near to Harrow Arts Centre, Uxbridge Road, Hatch End. Sabina has a serious medical condition that requires regular medication; she does not have this medication with her. Police are increasingly concerned for her welfare. Sabina is 5ft, of slim build, with very long black hair and has braces on her teeth. She was wearing black skinny jeans, a maroon long-sleeve top, a black hoodie and black hi-top trainers Anyone with information is asked to contract Harrow police on 101.

UN ‘hopes’ SL will follow accountability pledges

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

Despite contradictions in the Sri Lanka political spectrum on proposed accountability mechanisms, the United Nations said that they hoped the country would follow the procedure agreed upon with the United Nations Human Rights Commission (UNHRC). Spokesperson to Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, Stéphane Dujarric said that he was yet to see the exact comments made by President Maithripala Sirisena on the involvement of international judges in the accountability procedure. “I haven’t seen those exact comments.  There are issues between the international community and Sri Lanka and agreements to ensure accountability.  And we hope those are followed,” Dujarric said. He expressed these views when questioned about President Sirisena’s remarks during the daily press briefing. Journalists questioned if the comments could be seen as the country taking […]

US Commends Sri Lanka’s Reconciliation Measures

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

Sri Lankan Lawmakers Approve Right to Info Bill South Asian Countries Plan Free Helpline to Fight Human Trafficking UN Lauds Sri Lankan Court’s Ban on HIV Discrimination A U.S. envoy on Tuesday commended the steps taken by Sri Lanka to foster reconciliation between the sides that fought a long civil war that ended seven years ago. Assistant Secretary of State Tom Malinowski said on a visit to Colombo with another U.S. official that they have seen “Sri Lanka take concrete steps forward in its reforms in democratization and reconciliation” in the last few months. Among the steps he cited were the bill to establish an office on missing persons, ratifying the convention on disappearances and releasing of lands held by military, actions that were included […]

UN tells Sri Lanka to stick to its commitments on accountability

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

The United Nations has urged Sri Lanka to stick to its commitments on accountability. Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the UN Secretary-General, responding to a question posed on Sri Lanka, recalled that there are agreements between Sri Lanka and the international community and Sri Lanka should stick to those agreements.  “There are issues between the international community and Sri Lanka and agreements to ensure accountability. And we hope those are followed,” he said. He commented after being asked by a reporter at a media briefing in New York to respond to reports that President Maithripala Sirisena has refused to agree to have international judges in the domestic accountability process. (Colombo Gazette)

Malinowski here to look at Lanka’s progress on human rights

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

US Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor Tom Malinowski will visit Sri Lanka and Cambodia from July 12 to 20, where he will engage with Government officials and local civil society representatives. In Sri Lanka, Assistant Secretary Malinowski will focus on Sri Lanka’s continued progress in meeting the commitments made during last September’s UN Human Rights Council session.  He will also discuss the work that remains in the areas of justice and reconciliation, and confirm that the United States continues to support Sri Lankan efforts to tackle these issues. In Cambodia, Assistant Secretary Malinowski will discuss the importance of human rights to furthering U.S.-Cambodia bilateral ties. He will meet with government officials to discuss the importance of free and fair elections. […]

Lanka may take legal action against media for false reports

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka fires academy bowling coach over fixing approachSri Lanka’s Silva hospitalized after blow on the headHigh performance manager for Sri Lanka CricketSilva restores pride as Sri Lanka follow onSri Lanka PM says corruption claims must be probed Sri Lanka today warned of a legal action against media which would carry inaccurate and distorted reports that may cause divisions in the country and disrupt reconciliation process with the minority community. Ranga Kalansuriya, Director General of Media at the Government Information Department said that certain media have been carrying incorrect information with the aim to cause divisions in the current reconciliation environment. He cited a report which said that a war crimes tribunal would be set up soon with the participation of foreign judges as suggested […]

President off to UK…

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

BY CHARMINDA RODRIGO President Maithripala Sirisena will be leaving for the United Kingdom to attend the graduation ceremony of his younger daughter Dharani Sirisena on 12 July 2016. Dharani, is the second and the youngest daughter of the Sirisena family. She has successfully completed a Bachelor….. in Law (LLB) degree at the University of Staffordshire with flying colours. The President et al will be attending this ceremony in a private capacity. After which the President will be returning to Sri Lanka on 16 July 2016.

War crimes: TNA’s claim at Congressional hearing irrelevant – minister

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

By Shamindra Ferdinando Skills Development and Vocational Training Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe yesterday dismissed as irrelevant a statement made by Jaffna District MP M. A. Sumanthiran at a recent Congressional hearing on behalf of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) in respect of foreign judges in a judicial mechanism to inquire into war crimes. Minister Samarasinghe was responding to a query raised by The Island at a special media conference held by the President’s Office at the Information Department to explain President Maithripala Sirisena’s stand on Western intervention in Arab countries and proposed judicial mechanism to probe accountability issues here. The Island pointed out that TNA spokesperson had declared that there was a tripartite understanding involving the government of Sri Lanka, the US and the TNA to […]

Arrests will not hinder their political drive – Ex-President

13th July 2016 // 0 Comments

By Norman Palihawadana Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said no one could hinder the forward march of the Joint Opposition by arresting his family members and Opposition activists. “By slinging mud, framing false charges and insults no one can stop us, the former President said. He likened the incumbent government to a pickpocket. The ex-President told The Island that the government was doing everything possible to cover up its weaknesses and failures and ever since it came to power was taking its political opponents into custody indiscriminately. But, the masses knew who the real culprits were, Rajapaksa said. “The government neglected the issues faced by the masses and keeps attacking and vilifying us,” he said.

Abductions and Torture in Jaffna: Can Sri Lanka Change?

12th July 2016 // 0 Comments

The Guardian has run a really disturbing piece about a British man who was tortured during a recent visit to Sri Lanka. Evidently, Velauthapillai Renukaruban, who had travelled to Sri Lanka to get married, ran into trouble once he arrived in Jaffna, the capital of the Northern province. Here’s part of that Guardian piece: But soon after Renukaruban, who is a Tamil, arrived back at the family home in Jaffna, north Sri Lanka, his family said two men arrived on motorbikes, beat him up in front of his mother and older sister and then bundled him into a van. He was accused of being involved with LTTE, a militant group known as the Tamil Tigers, which fought to break away from the Sinhalese majority in […]

Hybrid Court Fiasco: Local versus International Judges

12th July 2016 // 0 Comments

Last Wednesday (6) Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera revealed that the final framework of the United Nations proposed hybrid court system will most probably be completed by January or February next year. His statements which seemingly contradicted President Maithripala Sirisena’s statement with regard to appointing international Judges into the local justice system, have opened several questions in the public. One is genuinely concerned over the Foreign Minister’s remarks. According to him, the President had merely expressed ‘an opinion’ when he had promised the massive gathering at the Independence Day celebration that he would not allow international Judges to be appointed into the local justice system. However, Foreign Minister Samaraweera went on to say that once the consultation process into designing the framework of the proposed […]

Call For Sri Lankan Army To Release Record Of War ‘Surrendees’ – OpEd

12th July 2016 // 0 Comments

BY TRANSCONFLICT JULY 11, 2016  For the first time the Sri Lankan army has confirmed that a record of individuals moving across the front-line at the end of the war was kept and – whilst the number of individuals accounted for by the record remains unclear – could potentially be a major development in helping to establish the last known whereabouts of many of the disappeared. By the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice* It has been almost 7 years since the conclusion of Sri Lanka’s civil war and there are still many questions that remain unanswered. One of the biggest of those is what happened to the many hundreds of LTTE ‘surrendees’, as well as the thousands of Tamil civilians, who were taken into […]

Blueprint for NEW Constitution

12th July 2016 // 0 Comments

The Committee of Public Representations on the Constitution (CPRC), which has been appointed to gather public opinion on Constitutional amendments completed its task and handed over the report to the President recently. The 24 member Public Representations Committee on Constitutional Reforms headed by veteran legal expert Lal Wijenayake appointed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, went around the country and gathered public opinion. The committee chaired by Wijenayake included Winston Pathiraja (Secretary), Prof. Gamini Samaranayake, Prof. Navaratne Bandara, Prof. M.L.A Cader, Mr. N. Selvakumaran, S. Thavarasa, Kushan de Alwis PC, Dr. Harini Amarasuriya, Dr. Kumudu Kusum Kumara, Sunil Jayarathne, Dr. Upul Abeyratne, Themiya Hurulle, Faisz Musthapha PC, Dr. S. Vijesandiran, M.Y.M Faisz, M.K.Nadeeka Damayanthi, Kanthi Ranasinghe, S.C.C. Elankovan and Sirimasiri Hapuarachchi. Starting today the Daily Mirror […]

Another Son of Sri Lanka’s Former President Mahinda Is Arrested

12th July 2016 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — The oldest son of Sri Lanka’s former president,Mahinda Rajapaksa, was arrested Monday on charges of money-laundering in the government’s latest effort to prosecute members of the previous administration — many of whom have been under investigation since Mr. Rajapaksa’s election defeat last year. The son, Namal Rajapaksa, 30, who is a member of Parliament representing his father’s home district of Hambantota, was placed in the custody of the police by a magistrate in Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, on charges of accepting $480,000 from a real estate company. Over the last 18 months, several high-ranking members of the Rajapaksa family have been arrested on corruption charges. Namal Rajapaksa is the third member of the former president’s immediate family to be […]

Black Lives Matter – And So Do Tamil Lives

12th July 2016 // 0 Comments

By S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole – Prof. S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole My son Yovahn, a Junior at Rice University, is a Student Counsellor to Freshmen coming in for orientation. Unlike in Sri Lanka, their own racism was something White racists felt compelled by law and custom to hide. However, with the Donald Trump phenomenon, American racists no longer feel that need. The Police in several cities have been killing Blacks, unabashed that bystanders were filming them. So the university has asked student counsellors to push the slogan “Black Lives Matter.” I had a call from Yovahn this morning (11.07.2016), saying that some trainees are responding that the slogan implies that other lives do not matter. He really needed a listener in me and went on […]

International Pressure Must Not Be Seen As Overbearing

12th July 2016 // 0 Comments

By Jehan Perera – Jehan Perera The EU has downsized its list of conditions for Sri Lanka to regain the GSP Plus benefits that it lost in 2011. At that time the EU set out a list of 15 conditions that the government had to meet if it was to retain the GSP Plus benefits. The previous government flatly refused to move on them citing national security and national sovereignty as the reasons. Ironically when the new government made public its intentions to reapply for the GSP Plus benefits, the EU set out 58 conditions. But now it is reported the country will now only have to fulfill 15 of them. These 15 conditions include provision for independent and impartial appointments to key public positions, […]

“As Long As I Am The President, No International Participation In Judicial Process” Sirisena Declares

11th July 2016 // 0 Comments

In what could be a visible setback to the country’s reconciliation process, President Maithripala Sirisena has declared that until he is the President of Sri Lanka, no foreign judges or courts will be part of any judicial process. Sirisena who has been adamant against any international participation in an accountability probe on war crimes allegedly carried out by both the military and the LTTE during the last stages of the war which reportedly killed some 40,000 civilians during 2009, reiterated his stand at an event held in Panadura on Friday. “As long as I am the President of this country, I will not allow for any international courts, international judges and international organisations to interfere with the internal affairs of Sri Lanka and the judiciary,” […]

Ex LTTE negotiator rejects assurances given by Sri Lanka

11th July 2016 // 0 Comments

A former LTTE peace negotiator, Visuvanathan Rudrakumaran, has rejected the assurances given by the Government to address the accountability issue related to the war. Rudrakumaran says based on the statements made by Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera in Geneva recently, Sri Lanka’s rationale for transitional justice is preposterous and the international community should insist that the Government changes it. “The High Commissioner in his oral report has, of course, noted some incremental progress in Sri Lanka’s measures for implementing the resolution. But he has also pointed out the danger of the commitment for justice getting stalled and dissipated. He has expressed concern that the PTA continues to be used mostly against Tamils; those accused to have committed systemic crimes of kidnap and murder had been allowed to continue to […]

Briton ‘tortured’ in Sri Lanka returns to UK

11th July 2016 // 0 Comments

campaign to secure his release, The Guardian newspaper reported. Velauthapillai Renukaruban, 36, who lives in Ealing, west London, was freed from detention by the Government in the south Asian country after the Foreign Office, a top human rights lawyer in Sri Lanka and a campaign by his family in London helped to secure his freedom. Renukaruban arrived in the country of his birth on 1 June to marry Thajeepa Vinayagamoorthy, 27, in an arranged marriage. They planned to marry on 8 June and a small family party had been arranged. Renukaruban was planning to return to the UK on 23 June with his wife. But soon after Renukaruban, who is a Tamil, arrived back at the family home in Jaffna, north Sri Lanka, his family […]

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