GSP+ approved by EU Trade, Foreign Ministers

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

The European Council has approved the Generalized System of Preferences Plus or the GSP+ tariff concession allowing Sri Lanka to export products tax-free to the European market. The Foreign Affairs Council at a meeting yesterday agreed to grant additional trade preferences to Sri Lanka. The Council said on this basis, Sri Lanka has become eligible to receive additional tariff preferences for sustainable development and good governance, in addition to the generalized scheme of tariff preferences benefitting to all developing countries. The Government Information Department issuing a statement said this completes all three procedural requirements for Sri Lanka to receive GSP+ status following the European Commission and Parliament approval prior. The Department said the official notification on the entry into force will be finalised next week. […]

Accused wife killer, set free on trial delays, ready to be deported to Sri Lanka

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

MONTREAL — The first murder suspect in Quebec to be set free after the length of his criminal proceedings exceeded the legal limit told immigration and refugee authorities Thursday he wants to be deported back to Sri Lanka. Sivaloganathan Thanabalasingam, a refugee from Sri Lanka who was charged with murdering his wife, told the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada during his detention hearing he no longer fears returning to his home country. “I don’t have any kids, I don’t have anything in Criminal Code or immigration code,” he said. “So I don’t know why I’m still in jail. That’s what I’m thinking … to go back to my country.” Thanabalasingam, 31, was charged with second-degree murder in the slaying of his 21-year-old wife, Anuja […]

A political solution should be based upon a federal set-up

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

BY MIRUDHULA THAMBIAH Ilankai Tamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) Leader and Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian Mavai Senathiraja said his party will not sacrifice or change their mentality in achieving a political solution through a North-East merger as it is an essential demand of his people. “The proposal put forward by President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga on 3 August 1995 introduced the union of regions, North-East merger with power sharing including an administrative unit for the Muslims in the East as a good solution and it is still being examined by us for the betterment of the future. We are quite serious that a political solution only can be found in a merged North-East,” he said. Following are excerpts of the interview: ? You have recently mentioned […]

Macron’s Big Win: Vital Lessons For Sri Lanka

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Lukman Harees – Lukman Harees After the most thrilling and tumultuous election campaign of recent times, the French have defied populism and made history. Emmanuel Macron, the 39-year-old leader of the fledgling En Marche! (On the Move!) party, soundly defeated Ms Marine Le Pen by 66% to 34%. The defeat of Le Pen, the ‘unsinkable’ stalwart of the xenophobic right, undoubtedly offered great comfort to all those who have worried of the almost meteoric rise of the far right movements in the recent past in the West. There was a fear that the French would choose nationalism. It’s been a difficult moment – the country was so divided. The atmosphere of the election – while not exactly civil war – was of a deep […]

Rajapaksa had invested heavily on properties in Dubai

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

FCID Accuses Attorney General Of Being Sluggish In Rajapaksa Investigations Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID) has accused the Attorney General of adopting a sluggish attitude in directing the division on how to proceed with certain vital cases concerning former President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his associates. Jayantha Jayasuriya – AG According to highly placed sources closely connected to the FCID, apart from coming under pressure from powerful quarters, the FCID is also compelled to ‘sit and wait’ because despite referring certain cases to the AG, they are yet to receive instructions on how to proceed. Chief among these cases is the investigation into the purchase of the Mariott Hotel in Dubai by Nandana Lokuwithana, a very close associate of Rajapaksa’s. “Due to the Attorney General’s delay, […]

Reason behind MODI’s visit!

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Shivanthi Ranasinghe India needs to change its foreign policy vis-a-vis Sri Lanka immediately. These policies have not only failed, but have disastrously backfired on India, ending in a result totally unanticipated and always against India. The extent of the damage caused by their own policies to India can be measured against the success of their arch rival, China. PM Modi visiting Sri Lanka for Vesak celebrations is viewed by the Sri Lankan public with extreme suspicion. Nobody accepts the government’s assurances that Modi is just being a good neighbour, popping in for tea and lanterns. In the fracas erupting with attempts to lease the Magampura Port to the Chinese, there was a significant fraction that saw the benefits of the Chinese coming in, and […]

Sirisena’s grip tightens on the Presidency

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

WINSTON DE VALLIERE Considering the tremendous rapport she has with President Maithripala Sirisena and her ingrained comparatively ‘patrician’ revulsion she’s often harboured for the less than plebeian Rajapaksa clan, Chandika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga will exert considerable influence, needed or not, with President Sirisena, in matters pertaining to the relentless purge of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party. She was magnanimous and ‘big’ enough to let bygones be bygones and agree to accommodate S.B. Dissanayake’s subtle entry into the Sirisena camp and into a Cabinet portfolio as men of the ilk of Nimal Siripala also did, along with several other major-domos in the Rajapaksa Cabinet. At best then, President Sirisena holds a bitter cup in his hand and is tested to the limits to keep his wits about him […]

PREZ TELLS CABINET: PROBE MAHINDA GOVT’S CORRUPTION

12th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Ravi Ladduwahetty President Maithripala Sirisena has told his Cabinet of Ministers yesterday to prioritize probing all corruption activities of the previous regime. The President has told his Ministers to prioritize and finish probing all the fraudulent activities of the previous government following ministers telling him that there was a lacuna in the completion of the investigations, authoritative…… political sources told Ceylon Today last night. The President has also told his Ministers to proceed with the development activities of the country as one team, devoid of Party politics, when it came to development projects as well. The Cabinet approved the Colombo Port City project as well which was one among about 60 Cabinet Memoranda which were approved yesterday. President Sirisena also told the Ministerial Committee […]

Italy seizes ship-load of tramadol for ISIS via Sri Lanka

11th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Police Intercept 37 Million Painkillers Headed for ISIS Terrorists Who Fight While High Police in Italy have seized an estimated 37 million painkillers which they suspect were being shipped to Libya to be sold to ISIS fighters who take them during battle. The pills are understood to be tramadol, the painkiller which some use as a cheap alternative to cocaine. It’s thought the tablets are frequently sold to ISIS fighters for about $2 each, meaning the haul was worth in the region of $75 million to whoever was planning to push them. The tablets were found hidden in three containers in the port of Genoa. They were labelled as blankets and shampoo on a vessel destined for Misrata and Tobruk, Libya. “Isis is making a […]

Arrest of soldiers was not due to fighting the LTTE – CBK

11th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan Chairperson of the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR), Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, on Tuesday (9), said the Government’s reconciliation process was aimed at stopping further damage being caused to national security. Speaking at a media briefing, after the government approved the National Reconciliation Policy, the former President was responding to the question on whether the Government had undertaken to cater to the West’s interest, jeopardizing the national security, as claimed by several politicians of the Joint Opposition. She said, “If you don’t work on the national policy of reconciliation to bring about religious and ethnic harmony, there can be isolation between communities triggering a war situation. She said only a reconciliation process can halt such splits and some people don’t […]

Indian PM Modi betraying Tamils and Hindus in Sri Lanka

11th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Modi should postpone the Colombo Trip to avoid betraying the Tamils and the Hindus in Sri Lanka by visiting during the Wesak, a Mahavamsa Sinhala-Buddhist religious day.” — A Spokesman for Tamils for Trump NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, May 9, 2017 /EINPresswire.com/ — Modi should postpone the Colombo Trip to avoid betraying the Tamils and the Hindus in Sri Lanka by visiting during the Wesak, a Mahavamsa Sinhala-Buddhist religious day. The Sri Lankan Buddhist Chronicle myth “The Mahavamsa” equates the killing of the ‘others’ (Tamils, Hindus, and races and religions other than Sinhala-Buddhist) as being on par with the killing of “sinners and wild beasts,” and the Sinhala-Buddhist King’s sorrow and regret are assuaged. This is against the Buddha’s teaching. Modi’s visit to the Sri Lankan’s […]

Remembering March and April as ‘bloodiest’ months in Jaffna Peninsula

10th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Manekshaw The early eighties had witnessed Jaffna Peninsula gradually turning into a land of merciless killings with the emergence of several Tamil militant outfits with the slogan of liberation struggle for Eelam. Leaders of some of the Tamil militant outfits including Douglas Devananda, K. Pathmanabha and Suresh K. Premachandran from the Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) had the opportunity of even getting trained with the Palestine militants in the Middle East. As law and order in the peninsula was rapidly deteriorating with the militants carrying arms targeting Police personnel and Police stations in the North, the innocent civilians remained as the silent majority in a helpless state witnessing the lamp post killings, bank robberies, abductions and the land mine attacks targeting the Security […]

All 9 Chief Ministers call to devolve more power to Provincial Councils!

10th May 2017 // 0 Comments

A collective call has been made to President Maithripala Sirisena to devolve more power to Provincial Councils and make them meaningful by Chief Ministers of all nine Provinces at the 33rd Convention of Chief Ministers. The Convention was held with the participation of the Chief Ministers of the nine provinces including Chief Minister of the Northern Province C.V. Wigneswaran at Cinnamon Lodge, Habarana last Saturday (6). It was interesting to note the unstinted unity of the Chief Ministers voicing together to devolve more power to Provincial Councils. The Provincial Council system which came into effect following the signing of the Indo-Lanka Peace Accord remains as the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. With fervent calls made by the Chief Ministers of the Northern and Eastern Provinces […]

Sri Lanka will get GSP+ without making any improvement on its human rights track record. Why should they?

10th May 2017 // 0 Comments

True to form, Sri Lanka ditches international pledges on anti-terrorism laws Within days after successfully hoodwinking the international community, especially its European allies, in regaining the GSP+ trade concessions, Sri Lanka has got unanimous cabinet approval last week to repeal and replace the existing Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) with another draconian one. Despite making repeated pledges at international forums including the UN Human Rights Council that the Counter Terrorism Act (CTA) would be in tandem with the best international standards and practices pertaining to anti-terror legislation, the proposed act is worse than the PTA in its spirit and words. It seeks to give excessive powers to the executive, military, and police in the name of preventing and countering terrorism, without proper checks and balances, […]

1000 yrs old Sivan Temple in Trincomalee jungle reveals the Hindu roots of Tamil Eelam.

10th May 2017 // 0 Comments

1000 yrs old Sivan Temple in Trincomalee jungle reveals the Hindu roots of Tamil Eelam. 1,000 years old Tamil Epigraphs found in the ruins of Sivan Temple located in the jungles of Trincomalee. TD News | Jaffna | May 7, 2017:: Recently a resident of Seruvila had sent a photograph of ruined temple to Manimaran, an officer attached to the Regional Archaeological Department – Jaffna. The Architecture and the Art traditions observed in photograph resembled closely with the 2nd Sivan Temple of Pollonnaruwa and urged us to undertake a field visit to this temple. During the early part of last month we, along with the Officers of the Archaeological Department, Manimaran, Kapilan, Project Director of the Jaffna Region Central Cultural Fund, Chanthana Maithripala undertook a field […]

Gotabhaya And The Political Implications of Dual Citizenship

8th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By D.B.S.Jeyaraj Kumara Vidugalage Dona Geetha Samanmalee Kumarasingha popularly known as Geetha Kumarasinghe is in the eye of a politico-legal storm. The glamorous actress turned politician who was elected to Parliament in August 2015 from the Galle district on the United Peoples Freedom Alliance(UPFA) ticket has been unseated by an Appeal court ruling. According to newspaper reports the Court of Appeal on May 3rd 2017 issued a Writ of Quo Warranto disqualifying the UPFA Member of Parliament from holding office as an MP because Ms. Geetha Kumarasinghe was holding dual citizenship at the time of seeking nomination to enter Parliament. She was a citizen of Switzerland as well as Sri Lanka. Consequent to the 19th amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka, no person can […]

Corbyn Government Will End Military Aid To Sri Lanka: John McDonnell

8th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By TU Senan – TU Senan The upcoming general election in Britain will not be an ordinary one. Despite the fact that the Labour Party is behind in the polls and suffered some losses in the more rural county council elections, Labour Party could still form a government after 8 June. The popularity of Corbyn’s policies continue to enthuse a huge number of young voters. It was reported that there is a surge in voter registration among young people. As for most of the workers and poor and for the Black and Asian population living in Britain, the choice is somewhat simpler. Either vote for a warmongering, immigrant-hating party that promises to make more cuts in services and further privatise the NHS or vote for […]

Mahinda’s war general faces investigation over Killing in Brazil Embassy!

8th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Few criminal acts by Mahinda administration. Sri Lankan missions abroad was safe havens for criminals who carried out murder of journalists and other human rights abuses.  Key suspect in the Lasantha Wickrematunga assassination had been given a job in the Sri Lankan embassy in Berlin. Death squad leader had been nominated as a second secretary to the Sri Lankan embassy in Thailand Two STAFF involved in the murder had been given promotions and sent to the United States from Brazil by Mahinda Administration. Retired army major general and author of “Road to Nandikadal” Kamal Gunaratne is under investigation over the murder of an employee at the Sri Lankan embassy in Brazil , foreign minister Mangala Samaraweera announced in parliament. “Road to Nandikadal” the book gives a catalogue of […]

Constitutional proposals contrary to promises given by Prez, PM-NJC

8th May 2017 // 0 Comments

By Shamindra Ferdinando The National Joint Committee (NJC) has alleged that recently unveiled constitutional proposals are at variance with repeated assurances given by both President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe regarding matters of crucial national importance, including the status of Buddhism. The NJC alleges that controversial proposals are contained in an interim report of the Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly tasked with the constitution making process. Constitutional affairs expert Manohara de Silva, PC, said that in the wake of strong public criticism of the Report on Public Representations on Constitutional Reform (Lal Wijenayake Committee) and reports of Six Sub Committees, the government had reassured that foremost place would be given to Buddhism. Addressing the media at the National Library and Documentation Services […]

British woman helped 6 Sri Lankans reach UK with fake Indian passports

8th May 2017 // 0 Comments

Before she was caught in March for allegedly aiding four Sri Lankan nationals to illegally travel to the UK with forged Indian passports, a British woman also helped six other Sri Lankans make the journey, the Indian Express reported. The Sahar police have identified British national Julie Ann Warner and Sri Lankan agent Rayappen Thevakumaran (52), who was arrested at Chennai airport on May 4, as the main conspirators in the racket to send Sri Lankans to UK using forged Indian passports. Another Sri Lankan travel agent Mahamuni Logorajan and an Indian agent Rajan, both currently absconding, are also allegedly involved in the racket. fter Chennai immigration officers handed over Thevakumaran to the Sahar police on May 5, the latter have claimed that between January […]

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