21st March 2017

Sri Lanka ex-leader’s brother ‘led death squad’: court

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

Former Sri Lanka president Mahinda Rajapakse’s brother Gotabhaya directed a top-secret death squad which targeted journalists and dissidents, a court was told Monday. Criminal Investigations Department (CID) told the Mount Lavinia magistrate’s court that Gotabhaya Rajapakse, who was Sri Lanka’s defence secretary during his brother’s rule, directed a secret unit which is accused of assassinating a newspaper editor in January 2009. The CID said it found evidence that the death squad was controlled by Gotabhaya Rajapakse who has already publicly denied involvement in the killing of former Sunday Leader editor Lasantha Wickrematunga. “Testimony from the former army commander (Sarath Fonseka) shows that there was a special secret unit outside his authority and controlled by Gotabhaya Rajapakse through the then chief of national intelligence Kapila Hendawitharana,” […]

‘SL needs to implement 27 conventions for GSP+’

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka needs to ensure that there is no serious failure on its part to implement the 27 international conventions at the desired level to be qualified for the GSP plus concession, Commerce Director General Sonali Wijeratne said. “Looking at the regulations which are applicable to the European Parliament and Council, the facts of the case and the experience of others countries that have also thought of applying under various conditions, Sri Lanka has an excellent case.” According to Wijeratne, Sri Lanka has to look at a compendium of other issues as to how long Sri Lanka can actually keep GSP plus concession going on by ensuring that there is no serious failure on the part of Sri Lanka to implement the conventions at the […]

South supports Tamil demands

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

By Panchamee Hewavissenti Several progressive organizations and individuals in the South have extended their support to the demands of the people in the North and East, such as to release their lands from the possession of the security forces, providing information on the missing people and the abrogation of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA). The protest which commenced outside Fort Railway Station last week included several progressive organizations and university students. “The government has pledged these affected people in the North and East that they would solve their problems. It is unfortunate, however that this government operates in the same manner as the former regime. They have been unable to give a satisfactory solution to these war affected people. We came here in support […]

Exporters to EU must be educated on Brexit – GM ECCSL Srinath

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

By Rathindra Kuruwita and Umesh Moramudali Europe has been one of our biggest export markets for decades, and it still is, even after the loss of the GSP + concession in 2010. Ceylon Today spoke to Srinath Fernando, General Manager of European Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka (ECCSL) to discuss the current situation of the EU market, the issues faced by our exporters and what the government should do to take advantage of the probable resumption of the GSP + concession. ?: First of all tell us what the ECCSL does? A: ECCSL was established in 1996 and its mandate is to promote trade between the European Union and Sri Lanka. There are 28 EU countries and only five have embassies in Colombo. The majority […]

Mahinda is confident that US President Trump will help him cover up the war crimes.

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

BY SHIVANTHI RANASINGHE Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera crossed swords with former President Mahinda Rajapaksa over his recent statement. The latter called for politicians in Sri Lanka Freedom Party and United National Party in government to protect our country from dangerous amendments to the Constitution. Samaraweera disagrees. Ex-President’s statement titled, ‘Constitutional and Legal Reforms to Destroy the Nation’ cautions these proposed amendments as, “firstly, punishing the armed forces for winning the war, secondly devolving more and more power to the provinces until the Central Government ceases to be relevant, thirdly, destroying the ability of the Sri Lankan State to respond adequately to a breakdown in law and order, fourthly, demoralizing and breaking the will of the majority of the population and the armed forces, and fifthly, […]

M.A. Sumanthiran on Sri Lankan Politics, Tamil Affairs, and Indo-Lankan Ties

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

The Diplomat‘s Taylor Dibbert speaks to noted Sri Lankan parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran. By Taylor Dibbert March 20, 2017 M.A. Sumanthiran is a Sri Lankan lawyer, parliamentarian and member of the Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (ITAK), a Tamil political party. The Diplomat‘s Taylor Dibbert spoke with Sumanthiran about Sri Lankan politics, Tamil affairs, and India-Sri Lanka ties. The Diplomat: Sustained militarization and land issues pose significant challenges for civilians residing in Sri Lanka’s Northern and Eastern Provinces. How much progress has been made in these areas since Maithripala Sirisena assumed the presidency in January 2015?  M.A. Sumanthiran: Not much. There was significant movement initially, with about 400 acres being released in Palaly [in the North] immediately and the whole of Sampur in the East. Thereafter it has come […]

UN Human Rights Council Urged to Debate a Special Sri Lanka ad hoc Tribunal, as Recomended by UN Rights Chief: TGTE

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

“TGTE submitted a proposed draft Resolution for promoting Justice, Accountability and Human Rights in the island of Sri Lanka” GENEVA, SWITZERLAND, March 20, 2017 /EINPresswire.com/ — Today the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) sent to all Member States at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) a proposed draft Resolution for promoting Justice, Accountability and Human Rights in the island of Sri Lanka, along with a letter calling for their support and careful consideration of the proposal. The letter signed by TGTE’s UN Representative, Suginthan Murugaiah, stated that while the TGTE was cognizant of the fact that it did not enjoy the standing of a member state to the UNHRC, the proposal for an alternative draft Resolution was being made from the victims’ perspective, urging […]

Our people and our nation deserve genuine #Accountability & #Justice.

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

Our people and our nation deserve genuine #Accountability & #Justice. Don’t forget our courageous brothers and sisters who gave their life for our motherland. If we are sincere, sacrifice our sleep, sacrifice our comforts, sacrifice our enjoyment, at least sacrifice small things, don’t put the blame conveniently on others, don’t try to find fault in other organisations, don’t point our fingers on anyone and say traitors, because none of us qualify to do that. We are fighting against a state which is protected by powerful states and institutions. Genuine commitment is required from every Tamil. Without contributing time and energy you can’t expect others to accomplish difficult tasks. All are volunteers, all activists have the same problem as you. Let’s unite and dedicate our time more on winning friends […]

Sri Lanka Echocardiogram project – 5th to 9th July 2017

21st March 2017 // 0 Comments

Dear Friend, Areas affected by the war in the North and East of Sri Lanka are still recovering from the three decade long civil war that ceased in 2009. Local health care provision, whilst making tremendous achievements against all the odds, is still sub-optimal. In particular, the whole of Northern Province, with a population of over 1,000,000 is served by only 3 cardiologists – 2 in Jaffna district and 1 in Vavuniya district. However, there is no cardiology or echocardiogram (echo/ ultrasound scan of the heart) service in the other three districts of the Northern Province (Mannar, Killinochi and Mullaitivu). The Health Ministry of Northern Province has requested Assist RR  to help reduce the work load on the three cardiologists by providing free echocardiogram clinics in the […]