Gotabaya vows to release Sri Lankan soldiers at manifesto launch

Sri Lanka’s former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa once more vowed to release Sri Lankan troops accused of rights abuses and pledged to ensure the end of “foreign… interference” as he launched his election manifesto for next month’s presidential polls on Friday. Rajapaksa claimed that his government had taken steps “to pardon, rehabilitate and release 13,784 Tiger members who surrendered with arms” and lamented how that process was not in place for Sri Lankan soldiers accused of war crimes. His manifesto says that his government would “systematically rehabilitate and reintegrate” Sri…

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Sri Lankan special forces in UK for military training

A team of Sri Lankan army special forces were in the UK last week, where they took part in various military exercises with British troops, despite Sri Lankan troops still not being held accountable for human rights abuses committed against Tamils. The exercise came just a week before British parliamentarians from all major parties spoke on Tamil genocide recognition and called for accountability for massacres committed by Sri Lankan troops. Nevertheless, the exercise was just one of many that Sri Lankan troops have been actively partaking in since 2015, when…

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Beginning of a political upbringing amidst CBK’s return!

SLFP senior adviser, former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge is due to return to the island today (26), political sources said. Following her return may pave the way for a lot of political toppling in the SLFP. The SLFP is divided into several groups. The group of MPs is directly supporting Gotabaya Rajapaksa and is preparing to form a SLFP-SLPP alliance in future. Meanwhile, a group of SLFP organizers have come forward to support Sajith Premadasa, along with a group of SLFP rural level leaders and former local councilors. Meanwhile, another…

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PM at civil society vigil to mark their triumph over Oct constitutional coup

Prime Minister and UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne will join members of the Civil Society and Trade Union Collective today (26) at 7 pm at the Independence Square to mark the triumph of democracy over President Maihripala Sirisena-JO leader Mahinda Rajapaksa attempt to grab power unlawfully. A spokesman for the grouping said that those who joined the UNP and the civil society to defeat the Oct 26, 2018 constitutional coup could join the Independence Square vigil. According to him, the SLPP presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa was…

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Tourism Minister, industry officials visit Jaffna Intl. Airport

Initiative to explore future tourism opportunities Adding a new chapter to the civil aviation history in Sri Lanka, the Jaffna International Airport was declared open on 17 October. The officials and stakeholders of the Tourism industry visited the Jaffna International Airport to explore future tourism opportunities with Tourism Development Minister John Amaratunga last week. As an island nation, Sri Lanka depends very heavily on air access. At a time where the focus is on maintaining current lights and increasing current route capacity and frequency, the opening of the Jaffna International…

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Candidates who have not declared assets will face legal action – EC 2019 prez polls

By Saman IndrajithChairman of the Election Commission Mahinda Deshapriya says that six out of 35 presidential candidates in the fray have failed to submit their declarations of assets and liabilities so far. Out of the six candidates who have so far not handed over their asset declarations, one is a candidate of a prominent party and the other five are independent candidates, Deshapriya told The Island. Asked to divulge the names of the candidates who had not handed over their asset declarations, Deshapriya refused to do so, claiming that it…

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Gotabaya’s camp is racist

Dog-Whistle Racist Electioneering: Why Is The Nation Still Elusive To This Danger ? By Lakmal Harischandra – Lakmal Harischandra If we are surprised today that Gotabaya’s camp is racist, we haven’t been paying attention. Even before they started their campaign, they have been proving it repeatedly. In fact, bigotry has been a part of SLPP’s public persona since their formation. The open embrace of racism as a political strategy is, however, a natural progression from the days of Post-war Rajapaksa regime. While this bigotry campaign against the minorities was then instinctive arising from MR’s…

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Former FCID Chief Caught Laundering Money, Joins GOTHA

Former FCID Chief Senior DIG (retired) Ravi Waidyalankara has openly sided with the Rajapaksa campaign, days after the same police division he headed for 4 years found his wife and son embroiled in a massive financial fraud and money laundering scandal involving well known financial scammer and businessman Rienzie Edwards. Ravi Waidyalankara | File photo The details were revealed in the Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court by the same agency SDIG Waidyalankara headed from 2015 to February 2019 on Monday (21). The FCID first began investigating the matter under DIG Waidyalankara based on a…

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