20th May 2017

Apart From Grandstanding Internationally, cheating Sri Lankan Govt Must Deliver at Home By Expediting Re-settlement of War Displaced People

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Meera Srinivasan After 20 years in India, wearing a “refugee” tag that led her from one camp to another, it was only in December 2016 that Edward Selyn, 55, returned home. Until a few days ago, she was among a group of people seated under a tent in Mullikulam village in Mannar, in Sri Lanka’s Northern Province, protesting in the scorching heat for a month, demanding that the Sri Lankan Navy release her land. She was displaced in 1996 with her entire family, after the civil war broke out. Now, eight years after the war ended and months after her return, Ms. Selyn has not stopped feeling displaced. “I had all my documents and deeds, but still could not get back to the land where […]

Chief Minister Wigneswaran Says He Wont Let North Be Used as a “Vassal Province For The Benefit Of Wayward Investors”.

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

The Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Tamil-majority Northern Province, C.V.Wigneswaran, has said that his administration would not like industries coming up in the province to use locally available resources and would want them to deploy resources procured or purchased from outside the province. “In working out our industries we would prefer not to use our natural resources internally available, if alternatives from elsewhere could be procured or purchased,” he said speaking at a meeting on the economic development of Jaffna District in Jaffna on Friday. Wignswaran said this in the presence of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. . Presumably , the Chief Minister said this with a view to preserving the Northern province’s natural resources .But one wonders whether other provinces would allow their resources to […]

Facing Sri Lanka’s Ghosts

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

At some point during its brutal 26 years, the Sri Lankan civil war brought terror or loss to virtually everyone in the country. For Kasipillai Jeyavanitha, a mother of four, the defining moment of the conflict came in March 2009, just two months before the war ended eight years ago today.  She and her family were among thousands of civilians who had been living in the rebel-held territory, and who now found themselves trapped inside a conflict zone as the military made its final, terrifying advance on the group that had fought for her people’s independence. Kasipillai and her 17-year-old daughter, Jeromy, were running toward safety during a shelling attack when a pickup truck approached. Several men wearing military uniforms jumped out of the truck […]

GSP+ Received, so No more political package only Economic development to Tamils.

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Join hands to boost development in Northern Province – PM tells local politicians in Jaffna  Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe with Northen Provinice Chief Minister C V Vigeswaran addresses the media after his meeting with the politicians and the administrative officers in the North where it was decided to set up a mechanism for the economic development of the province. Pic By Pradeep Pathirana Special focus to develop economy of North and East  1,000 state sector jobs to Jaffna grads  Expressway system to be developed in the North with Indian assistance Tourism Task Force to visit Jaffna to explore new opportunities  In an effort to boost the development drive in the North, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday called upon all local politicians and civil society activists to join […]

Poverty high in the north-eastern provinces: central bank

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka to study debt levels among N-E Tamils Poverty high in the north-eastern provinces: central bank Sri Lanka’s central bank will study the growing indebtedness in Tamil-majority north and east, its Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy said. “We are concerned about the rise in household debt,” the governor said, referring to a prevalent post-war challenge facing families that are rebuilding their lives. Following the study and its analysis, the apex institution will take necessary steps, Dr. Coomaraswamy told Colombo-based foreign correspondents. After Sri Lanka’s civil war ended in May 2009, scores of displaced families who returned to their hometowns are struggling to piece their lives together. While the community suffered enormous losses for three decades, those resettling are grappling with few jobs, means to livelihood and […]

Tamils’ Right To Memorialization Continue

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Preparations are underway in many parts of the Northern and Eastern provinces to commemorate the brutal end of the civil war in 2009. Religious leaders, politicians and members of the civil society in the two provinces have organized several events in the two provinces today, the 18th of May. Eight years ago, thousands of Tamils were brutally massacred in eastern coastal region of the Vanni as the government intensified its war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Although the Rajapaksa government described the military operation as a humanitarian mission to liberate the Tamils from the clutches of the LTTE, it was an international secret even then that Sri Lanka’s military and the political leadership in Colombo did not have an iota of concern […]

Right To Mourn Is Universal; Stop Intimidate Tamils – Sooka Tells Government

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

The International Truth and Justice Project calls upon the Sri Lankan Government to ensure that their police immediately desist from threatening and intimidating Tamil activists and their families, after banning them from commemorating those who died in the civil war by carving their names on stones in Mullivaikkal. On Wednesday, the Mullaitivu court issued an order banning any prayers around the stones for a fortnight on the grounds that such an event might jeopardise national security, peace and integrity. On appeal, the court is reported to have raised concerns that there might be former LTTE cadres among the names carved on the stones. Yasmin Sooka – Executive Director – International Truth & Justice Project – Sri Lanka “The right to mourn is universal; you cannot […]

Discrimination on Tamils continue from Mahinda to Maithiri

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Chamindra Weerawardhana – Dr. Chamindra Weerawardhana It has been eight years since Sri Lanka underwent one of the most decisive turns, if not the most decisive and epoch-changing turn, in her post-1948 history. The conclusion of the final military offensive against the LTTE, Colombo’s resounding victory, and the LTTE’s defeat, resulted in a substantive transformation of the national and regional security configurations. This was an outcome previously deemed impossible in practitioner and academic circles. To so-called ‘Sri Lanka researchers’ – a mixture of anthropologists, geographers and development studies people – where ‘whiteness’ is deemed carte blanche to write authoritatively about Sri Lanka, May 2009 was an unexpected outcome. On the diplomatic front, many governments, especially in Delhi and in the West, expected what they […]

Dumping Salt Over Sri Lanka’s War Wounds

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Sri Lanka’s brutal civil war ended on May 18, 2009 – eight years ago – and yet many Tamil people are not even allowed to grieve. A recent court order in Mullaitivu district asserted that Tamils residing in a particular part of the district – for two weeks – aren’t allowed to mourn those who perished during the war. More generally, there have been ongoing reports of surveillance and intimidation related to other commemorative events. This order is a preposterous and reprehensible initiative. Unsurprisingly, an array of respected organizations have condemned the move. “The ban on the basis of national security is based on spurious grounds and is a sign of the ongoing repression and militarization that continues to affect the Tamil community in the […]

Understanding Tamil diaspora and their involvement in developing the north

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Diaspora is defined as the dispersion of people from their traditional homelands. There could be over 1.2 million Sri Lankan Tamils living in various parts of the world. The majority of Sri Lankan Tamils fled the country due to political and economic reasons. The number of Sri Lankan Tamils living abroad is even greater than the Tamils currently residing in the Northern Province. Tamil diaspora shaped the Sri Lankan political landscape through its financial and ideological support during the military struggle. Subsequently the term “Tamil diaspora” was associated with a negative connotation amongst majority of Sri Lankans. It was also perceived that the Tamils residing abroad had immense financial capacity and cared more about the Tamils residing locally. Eight long years have passed since the […]

Racism victim speaks out after abuse in Welwyn Garden City

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

An accountant who has been a proud British citizen for 17 years despite his Asian birth has spoken of his shock to suffer foul-mouthed racial abuse on the streets of Welwyn Garden City. Although Eranda Wickramasinghe was born in Sri Lanka 40 years ago, he has lived in the UK since 1990, and won citizenship in 2000, marrying an Englishwoman two years ago and moving to Welwyn Garden City. Last week, as he arrived at the Hydeway end of the railway station footbridge on his way to work in London, he was confronted by a white man. The man shouted: “F***ing world must be s**t for you lot to come here”. Mr Wickramsinghe told the Welwyn Hatfield Times: “I was left in no doubt about […]

Granting of GSP plus to Sri Lanka printed in EU official journal

20th May 2017 // 0 Comments

The decision by the European Commission to grant GSP plus to Sri Lanka has been printed in the official journal of the European Union (EU) and Sri Lanka has access to the EU market under the special scheme from today. The official journal of the EU issued yesterday (Thursday) amends an earlier decision to withdraw the GSP plus scheme granted to Sri Lanka.  In January this year the European Commission had noted that on 12 July 2016, the Commission received a GSP+ request from Sri Lanka.  The Commission said it has examined the GSP+ request from Sri Lanka in accordance with the provisions of Article 10(1) of Regulation (EU) No 978/2012, and the Commission has established that Sri Lanka meets the conditions. “Sri Lanka should […]