29th March 2017

Too Clever By Half: Has Sri Lanka Trapped Itself In Geneva?

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

By Sanja De Silva Jayatilleka – Sanja De Silva Jayatilleka It’s been 8 years since the war, and Sri Lanka just signed off in Geneva on a resolution that said Zaid al Hussain, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights should play a strengthened role in Sri Lanka. He might as well sit in Cabinet!  The new resolution, having praised Sri Lanka for its ‘positive engagement’ with the Office of the High Commissioner, which then should sit back with a sigh of relief and let this cooperative government do its obedient thing, actually adds a paragraph, specifically for the purpose of instructing Zaid to strengthen his advice and technical assistance. Usually when a country is ‘in compliance’ as they say, no further strengthening is included […]

Trump Takes Time, It’s Not UNHRC Is Giving Sri Lanka More Time

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

by N. Sathiya Moorthy Sampanthan needs to be congratulated and thanked for drawing the Tamils away over that distinction in the post-war, post-LTTE era, and thus proving a point It’s becoming increasingly clear that the entire UNHRC process, or the UNHRC-like institutions are the America-led West’s own way to take issues away from the UN Minister of Defence and State Councilor of the People’s Republic of China, General Chang Wanquan with President Maithripala Sirisena in Colombo and Donald Trump Whoever is in power, Sri Lanka could not have asked for more. A non-politician, Donald Trump as the US President needs time to study America and American policies overseas. So, Sri Lanka has got two more years at the UNHRC, as the incumbent Government in Colombo […]

Weerasekera And Tamil Diaspora Go Head To Head

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

by Easwaran Rutnam Former head of the Civil Defence Force, Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekara and the Tamil diaspora went head to head in Geneva last week Earlier, at a side event, the TGTE called for the arrest of Weerasekara An investigation was later launched into alleged intimidation of members of Sri Lankan civil society in the Palais des Nations in Geneva A member of the TGTE laughs while Sarath Weerasekera delivers a speech at the UNHRC Former head of the Civil Defence Force, Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekara and the Tamil diaspora went head to head in Geneva last week as both sides looked to counter the resolution on Sri Lanka which was eventually adopted at the UN Human Rights Council. The tense feeling between both […]

Anandasangaree demands Sambanthan’s resignation

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

The Secretary General of the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF), V. Anandasangaree in a letter to Leader of the Opposition, R. Sampanthan, has asked that Sampanthan submit his letter of resignation from the position of Opposition Leader, if the government fails to deliver on its promises to the Tamil people within a period of two weeks. “The Tamils have reached their limit of tolerance, but not now, it happened long ago. They are now forced to come to a decision to demand your resignation from the office of the Leader of the opposition, which office you had been using to defend the Government, much against the wishes of the people, not only the Tamils but people of all ethnic groups,” stated the letter released to […]

Whither human rights in Sri Lanka?

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

The singular focus on international rights intervention is killing a once-vibrant local rights movement From the time Sri Lanka’s civil war ended in 2009, international actors have infused narratives of the war with stories of human rights abuses. Eight years since, it has only become clear how irrelevant current human rights campaigns are to the war-torn people and their struggles. This is not for the lack of inhuman wrongs done by the state and others — there are plenty of them in Sri Lanka as in the rest of the world. Rather, it is the singular focus on international human rights intervention that is killing a once-vibrant local human rights movement in the country.  Notes from Geneva Sri Lanka was again in the limelight at […]

Tamils have valid claim for homeland Prof. Pathmanathan

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

Emeritus Professor of History S. Pathmanathan, in an interview with Dailymirror, discusses the origins of settlements in Sri Lanka and argues for the Tamil Homeland concept from a historian’s point of view. Prof. Pathmanathan, who is also the Chancellor of Jaffna University, said both the Sinhalese and the Tamils have a common identity. Q – How do you analyse the origin of Tamil settlements in the north? There are many unfounded impressions about the people of the country as a whole that were created during the 19th century. Europeans described the Sinhalese people as of Indo-Aryan origin on the basis of language they speak, and the Tamils as of Dravidian origin. In fact, these had cultural connotations, they were not racial terms. In contemporary times, […]

A van suspected to have been used to abduct Keith Noyahr found

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

A van suspected to have been used for several crimes including the abduction of journalist Keith Noyahr in 2008 was found from a house at Piliyandala, police spokesman Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) Priyantha Jayakody said. The van was found by officers of the Crime Investigation Division (CID) from a house of a woman who was suspected being mistress of Army Major Bulathwatta. Police suspects this van may have been used for the murder of Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickrematunge and several other crimes. CID Tells Courts “The Sunday Leader” Editor Lasantha Wickrematunge was Killed by Army Intelligence Officers. Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickramatunge was shot dead by Army intelligence officers, CID Inspector Nishantha Silva told Mount Lavinia Magistrate Mohammad Sahabdeen today. He said […]

I will not allow any soldier to be tried on war crime (even if they had done it?) President

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

President Maithripala Sirisena  opened the newly constructed three-storeyed building at the Defence Services School in Kurunegala. The President presented ‘Virisara’ beneficial cards to war heroes and assured them he is not prepared to make any government soldier a suspect in the war crime charges leveled against the armed forces and the government on the alleged violations of human rights during the war against LTTE and killing of more than 40,000 Tamil civilians in May 2009. More than 1000 LTTE Leaders and their family members who surrendered with White Flag after UN negociated the surrender were killed by the Sri Lankan forces leaving the UN embarrassed and damaging the image of the UN and its values. The President, pointing out that it is the responsibility and duty […]

Sri Lanka President signals green light for Gothas arrest?

29th March 2017 // 0 Comments

ECONOMYNEXT – President Maithripala Sirisena Wednesday drew a clear distinction between war heroes and those who used national security as a cover to target journalists and personal rivals and cleared the way for VVIP arrests. In an address to war veterans, the president said he will stand by the military which crushed the Tamil Tigers and ended the decades-long ethnic war, but he will not protect those who attacked journalists and sportsmen. His remarks were a thinly veiled reference to the January 2009 assassination of Lasantha Wickrematunga and the May 2012 murder of rugby star Wasim Thajudeen. Both cases were brushed under the carpet during the Rajapaksa regime. However, in both case, fresh evidence has shown that the Judicial Medical Officers colluded with corrupt police […]