December 2016

We did not follow the Sri Lanka process in killing the minority – Colombian President

14th December 2016 // 0 Comments

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, who will be handed this year’s Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to achieve a peace agreement with the FARC guerrillas, says that although the Sri Lankan model was extensively studied they did not think it was the correct procedure for Colombia. Beginning with a ceasefire agreement in early 2002, for almost five years a series of peace talks, facilitated by Norway, took place between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE. The Colombian President’s agreement with FARC put an end to 50 years of civil war. Responding to a question by “N.Sethu from NORWAY NEWS – NIPS” at a press conference after arriving in Oslo on Friday for his acceptance of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, President Santos said […]

CM Wigneswaran says Tamils oppose only illegal erection of Buddha statues

14th December 2016 // 0 Comments

The Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Tamil-majority Northern Province, C.V.Wigneswaran, has issued a statement refuting the Sri Lankan Justice Minister Wijedasa Rajapakshe’s allegation that he and the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) have demanded a ban on Buddha’s statues being erected in the overwhelmingly Hindu (and Christian) Northern Province. The Chief Minister said that he and the Northern Provincial Council had only objected to the illegal erection of Buddhist statues and the building of Buddha Viharas in areas where there are no Buddhists. He also said that the objection was to the erection of these illegally on forcibly seized privately owned lands. Statues of the Buddha and the construction of Buddhist temple are being done without consulting the elected Provincial Council. Wigneswaran clarified that neither he […]

NO POLITICAL PACKAGE FOR TAMILS! – Against the new Constitution 28 SLFP and UNP MPs to join JO

14th December 2016 // 0 Comments

By Thilini Kaushalya Wijesinghe Leader of the Pivithuru Hela Urumaya and Member of Parliament Udaya Gammanpila claimed that 28 parliamentarians from the Sri Lanka Freedom Party and the United National Party have decided to join the Joint Opposition against the new Constitution. Speaking at a media briefing, held at the main office of the Pivithuru Hela Urumaya office yesterday (12), Gammanpila said that in order to defeat the new Constitution, 76 Parliamentarians are required and as there are 51 in the Joint Opposition with the twenty-eight joining from the SLFP and the UNP, they have 79 and have thus decided to defeat the new Constitution. He added that hoped to increase the number of crossovers to 35.

UNP and SLFP Stand on New Constitution Differences a serious problem – Dinesh

14th December 2016 // 0 Comments

By J. T. De Silva Although the United National Party (UNP) and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) are together in the Government of ‘Good Governance’, their stances on the new Constitution, being totally different to each other, is a serious problem, Leader of the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna Dinesh Gunawardena told Ceylon Today. He also said that in such a background, the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna submitting proposals regarding the new Constitution has also become a problem. Gunawardena further said that other political parties are also facing this same situation. He said that no clear conclusion has been reached regarding the powers of the executive, the parliament, the Provincial Councils and the method of election for Local Government Institutions etc. He also said that opinions and […]

EXECUTIVE PRESIDENCY HAS TO BE ENACTED FOR 13TH CONSTITUTION -SB

14th December 2016 // 0 Comments

Minister SB Dissanayake says the Executive Presidency should be implemented for the 13th Constitutional amendment to be enacted. Speaking to media in Kandy today, Minister Dissanayake said he personally feels that the Executive Presidency should be kept at a certain level is the 13th Constitution is to be enacted. The Minister also spoke of the importance of implementing the powers of the Executive Presidency. He said powers of the Executive Presidency were reduced when formulating the 19th Constitutional amendment, where the powers were divided between the Parliament, the Prime Minister, the Public Representations Committee on Constitutional Reform, the Elections Commission, Judicial Service Commission and the National Police Commission. However, the Minister said an issue will arise when implementing the 13th Constitutional amendment, as it was […]

Duplicity Of Mahinda Rajapaksa Statement On ‘Constitutional Reforms’

14th December 2016 // 0 Comments

By Laksiri Fernando – Dr. Laksiri Fernando Mahinda Rajapaksa issued a statement on “Constitutional Reform Programme” recently (4 December 2016) referring to the six Sub-Committee reports submitted to the Constitutional Assembly (Parliament), without enlightening the public of ‘what was exactly wrong’ or ‘what should be revised’ in respect of the recommendations that they have submitted. This was not worthy of a person who was the President of the country twice, elected in 2005 and 2010. It is true that in 2010 he backtracked his initial promise of 2005 to abolish the presidential system and bring a new constitution, but nevertheless promised to expand on devolution (13+) including the establishment of a Senate (Mahinda Chintana 2010, p. 54-55). For those who have a bad memory this […]

PREPARING THE GROUND FOR CONSTITUTIONAL REFORM

13th December 2016 // 0 Comments

–Jehan Perera There seems to be a rethinking on the part of the government regarding the nature and extent of constitutional reform. The SLFP is of the stance that the Constitution should be amended without going in for a referendum.  SLFP media spokesman Minister Dilan Perera said “We have spoken with the President and taken a clear decision on this. Electoral reforms must take place and a new system introduced and we believe in maximum devolution of power within a unitary state. We have also made it clear that we will not support the merger of provinces or to lessen the power of the governors to make it a nominal position.” For its part, the UNP has taken the position that it would support a […]

Who is Jayalalithaa for Sri Lanka?

13th December 2016 // 0 Comments

Who is Jayalalithaa Jayaram? For millions in Tamil Nadu, she’s an inspiration. For women, she is one who broke all the stereotypes and fought her way through to become a Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, not once, but thrice. She was revered, loved and respected by many, and feared and hated equally. But who was Jayalalithaa for Sri Lanka? How was she perceived by the people here? Jayalalithaa the actress, had thousands of fans in Sri Lanka. Jayalalithaa the politician, unfortunately, did not. Her relationship with Sri Lanka was not a smooth one. It was tumultuous. There were three issues which divided Tamil Nadu from Sri Lanka. One is the Kachchatheevu issue where Jayalalithaa spearheaded calls for India to regain the islet. The other issue […]

Tamil CM Wigneswaran says only 5.2 % of private lands belonging to Tamils have been returned

13th December 2016 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO: The Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Northern Province, C.V.Wigneswaran, has said that out of the 67,000 acres of private lands of the Tamils seized by the Sri Lankan armed forces during the war, only 3,500 acres have been returned so far. Since the war ended in May 2009, only 5.2 % of the lands seized has been given back to their rightful owners. Speaking on Human Rights Day in Jaffna on Saturday, the Chief Minister said that if the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government is sincere about walking the talk on reconciliation, it should do the following things: return all private lands to their original owners; stop erecting Buddha statues and Buddhist temples illegally and in places where there are no Buddhists (barring army camps); stop arbitrary […]

Mahinda Rajapaksa Relied on Turncoats Like Douglas Devananda and his EPDP Instead of Promoting a Moderate Tamil Leadership

13th December 2016 // 0 Comments

By P.K.Balachandran Sri Lanka’s internal war which ended in May 2009, had cost the country around US$ 200 billion according to India’s former National Security Adviser and Foreign Secretary, Shivshankar Menon. In his book Choices: Inside the Making of India’s Foreign Policy, Menon says that this estimate does not include the “opportunity cost” to Sri Lanka which was once the fastest growing and the most open economy in South Asia. About deaths, the veteran Indian diplomat turned security expert says that between 1983 and 2009, 80,000 to 100,000 people, including combatants from both sides, lost their lives. Among them were 30,000 to 50,000 civilians, 27,693 LTTE cadres, 23,790 Sri Lankan army personnel,  1,155 men of the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF). The final stages of […]

Tamil Nadu Politicians Supported New Delhi’s Policy of Opposing Attempts by USA and Norway to Rescue Prabhakaran and LTTE says Indian Ex-Foreign Secretary

13th December 2016 // 0 Comments

By P.K. Balachandran Leaders of Tamil Nadu, across the political divide, privately but effectively supported the Indian government’s policy of opposing efforts by the US and Norway to rescue Velupillai Prabhakaran so that his Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) lived to fight another day, says Shivshankar Menon, India’s former National Security Adviser (NSA) in his book; “Choices: Inside the Making of India’s Foreign Policy”. “Political leaders across the political divide in Tamil Nadu knew that the only way Prabhakaran could lead Tamil Eelam would be to physically eliminate the real leaders of the Tamils who were in India, just as he had already done to other Tamil leaders in Sri Lanka,” Menon says in the chapter entitled ‘Force Works.’ “Despite differences in public posture on […]

Wills and Kate was so moved by courage and determination that they even hugged and kissed Sai Kadirrajah

7th December 2016 // 0 Comments

 Sai Kadirrajah was  Kissed and Hugged by Wills and Kate. She recently delivered a speech on behalf of YoungMindst @RoyalFoundation (run by #PrinceWilliam #PrinceHarry#DuchessofCambridge) ‘s private fundraiser. She was the only young person and the #royals were so moved by courage and determination that they even hugged and kissed her!! Kate even suggested she should be a public speaker!! Our family couldn’t be prouder!!! Young Peoples Mental Health isn‘t a joke and nor is it going go away. Sai is an activist who has faced a battle of her own only to come out fighting. And now she wants to make a difference to other young people like herself!She is an inspiration to me and has really showed me that you can achieve anything if […]

U.N. urges Sri Lanka to probe ongoing torture, war crimes

7th December 2016 // 0 Comments

By Stephanie Nebehay and Ranga Sirilal | GENEVA/COLOMBO A U.N. rights watchdog called on Sri Lanka on Wednesday to investigate “routine torture” of detainees by security forces and rebuked its government for failing to prosecute war crimes committed during the country’s 26-year civil war. The Sri Lankan military finally vanquished the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelan guerrillas in 2009. The United Nations and rights activists have accused the military of killing thousands of civilians, mostly Tamils, during the final weeks of the war and have demanded reforms and redress. In a report, the United Nations Committee against Torture cited continuing reports of abductions of people disappearing into “white vans”, deaths in custody, poor conditions of detention and the use of forced confessions in court. […]

‘Tamil Nadu’s new leaders should keep up pressure on Lanka’

7th December 2016 // 0 Comments

Shivajilingam, a hardline nationalist and relative of slain LTTE supremo V Prabahakaran, said Jayalalithaa had, at all times, shown interest in pressurising New Delhi to make Sri Lanka address Tamils’ concerns. Tamil Nadu’s new Chief Minister O Panneerselvam and Opposition Leader M K Stalin should continue with the same policy of pressurising Sri Lanka to address Tamils’ concerns in the country as J Jayalalithaa did, a hardline Tamil politician said here on Wednesday. “We hope Panneerselvam and Stalin will have the same interest in the Sri Lankan issue,” M K Shivajilingam said. Shivajilingam, a hardline nationalist and relative of slain LTTE supremo V Prabahakaran, said Jayalalithaa had, at all times, shown interest in pressurising New Delhi to make Sri Lanka address Tamils’ concerns. Jayalalithaa was […]

She was a beacon of hope for lankan Tamils

7th December 2016 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO: The late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa’s involvement in the Sri Lankan Tamil issue began almost immediately after she joined the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) and became its propaganda secretary within a year in 1983. It was in the later part of 1983 that over 1 lakh Sri Lankan Tamil refugees poured into Tamil Nadu, pushed out by the anti-Tamil riots in Sri Lanka in July that year. Sensing a great political opportunity to whip up pro-Tamil sentiments, the opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) led by M Karunanidhi took the lead in organising support for the beleaguered Sri Lankan Tamils. This left AIADMK leader and Chief Minister M G Ramachandran with no option, but to join the Eelam Tamil bandwagon […]

Destruction of Jaffna Library Ranil apologizes

7th December 2016 // 0 Comments

Extending an apology to the people of the North for the destruction of the Jaffna Library during the UNP regime in 1981, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe asked whether the Joint Opposition……was also willing to apologize for the things they did while in power. Speaking on the third reading stage debate on Budget 2017 under expenditure heads of the Ministry of Prisons, Rehabilitation and Resettlement, the Prime Minister extended this apology for the gutting of the Jaffna Library, which is considered a turning point in the North-East conflict. Joint Opposition MPs at this point heckled the Prime Minister who said the government had “given jobs to people in the North and restored industrial development there. By the time President Maithripala Sirisena marks his second anniversary in […]

Jayalalithaa’s Demise Is A Great Loss To The Tamil People In Sri Lanka

6th December 2016 // 0 Comments

The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Jayalalitha Jayaram‘s demise is a great loss not only to the people of Tamil Nadu but also to the Tamil people in Sri Lanka, says the Opposition Leader and the Leader of the Tamil National Alliance, R. Sampanthan. Selvi J Jayalalithaa Sending a condolence message Sampanthan has today said: “Jayalalitha also had a special concern for the resolution of the issues pertaining to the rights of the Tamil speaking people in Sri Lanka. Her concern resulted in the passing of several resolutions at the Tamil Nadu State Assembly and frequent interactions with the Central Government in New Delhi on Sri Lanka.” We publish below the condolence message in full: It is truly a sad day for the people in Tamil Nadu […]

‘US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in 2017 to affect SL’

6th December 2016 // 0 Comments

By Hiran H.Senewiratne The US Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco will increase bank interest rates in 2017 under the new Donald Trump administration, which will have a negative impact on countries like Sri Lanka, Central Bank Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy said. Federal Reserve Bank President John Williams said he supports an  interest-rate increase in 2017 and will likely aim at Fed’s 2 percent goal, reports said earlier. “To face the challenge Sri Lanka has placed the macro economic consolidation as a forward looking strategy, the Governor told a media conference last week at the Central Bank’s main office in Colombo. He said that Sri Lanka is quite sound where macro economic policy framework is concerned to face such a hike, because the U.S. economy is […]

LSEG Facility stamps investor confidence for SL

6th December 2016 // 0 Comments

The investment in Sri Lanka by London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) technology facility is a clear example of the investment confidence foreign countries have on Sri Lanka, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said. Speaking at the opening of the LSEG Technology Facility at the TRACE Expert City yesterday he said that unity governments formed by two rival political parties is not something very common in the world but it’s a success story in Sri Lanka. He also said that LSEG technology facility is a clear example of investeor confidence for the government. “I must also say that in addition to the London Stock Exchange Group, the Volkswagen Company from Germany will also lay the foundation for their factory in Kurunegala in January and another global company […]

Former Sri Lankan President Warns Of Social Unrest If China………….

6th December 2016 // 0 Comments

A recent delegation to China led by Sri Lanka’s former president Mahinda Rajapaksa warned that there may be public unrest if China carries out a new plan to create a 15,000 acre special economic zone in Sri Lanka’s remote Hambantota district. Together with the former External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris, the delegation personally delivered their doomsday message in Beijing, Guangzhou, and Shenzhen. Hambantota is the location of many large-scale, Chinese-partnered development projects that the Rajapaksa-led government started in 2008 with the ambition of turning an under-developed, tsunami-ravaged area that’s best known for its pristine beaches and wildlife preserves into the country’s number two city. Phase I of a $1.5 billion-deep sea port, a $209-million international airport, a world-class cricket stadium, a convention center, and […]

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