Sri Lanka: giving women a voice

Following years of conflict in Sri Lanka, HI implemented a project with the support of the US Department of State to increase the involvement of women, especially women with disabilities, in the country’s reconciliation process. The civil war [1] that raged in Sri Lanka for more than 20 years resulted in the deaths of more than 70,000 people and the disappearance of thousands more. Today, nine years after the end of the conflict, a process of national reconciliation is under way in the country. However, very few women are involved in this…

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They could not save their baby’: the human cost of Sri Lanka’s fuel crisis

It was, said the doctor, an avoidable delay that would haunt these parents for ever. When their two-year-old daughter first refused to eat, then began to go yellow with the signs of jaundice and then fell into a seizure, Kanchana and her husband, living in the Sri Lankan region of Haldummulla, knew she needed urgent medical care. But they faced a terrible obstacle. Sri Lanka is in the grip of the worst economic crisis in its history, declaring bankruptcy and with no foreign reserves left to pay for imports. As…

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Australia players raise ethical concerns over cricket tour to Sri Lanka

Australia’s cricketers have raised ethical concerns about touring Sri Lanka but will support a decision from officials to proceed with next month’s tour. Australia are due to fly out to Sri Lanka next week, with the island country in the midst of an economical crisis and political unrest. Sri Lanka was placed under a curfew early this month after protests turned deadly, and while those have been lifted rising inflation and shortages of key resources remain problematic. https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2022/may/25/australia-players-raise-ethical-concerns-over-cricket-tour-to-sri-lanka

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No new financing for Sri Lanka without macroeconomic policy framework – WB

The World Bank on Tuesday said it is not planning to provide any new financing to cash-strapped Sri Lanka until an adequate economic policy framework has been put in place. In a statement, the multilateral development bank said it was repurposing resources from previously approved projects to help the Sri Lankan government pay for some essential medicines, temporary cash transfers for poor and vulnerable households, and other support. It said recent media reports had inaccurately stated that the World Bank planned to provide Sri Lanka with a new bridge loan…

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How hubris and Covid transformed Sri Lanka from ‘donor darling’ to default

Please use the sharing tools found via the share button at the top or side of articles. Copying articles to share with others is a breach of FT.comT&Cs and Copyright Policy. Email licensing@ft.com to buy additional rights. Subscribers may share up to 10 or 20 articles per month using the gift article service. More information can be found here.https://www.ft.com/content/14cf5157-b798-44b6-a2dd-6c5a2ff011a0 It is 10am and the queue outside a petrol station in one suburb of Sri Lanka’s commercial capital Colombo is already hundreds of people long. At the front is Malar Peter,…

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Krrish case against Namal Rajapaksa: CID seeks AG’s advice

The CID conducting investigations against Hambantota District Parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa, concerning alleged misappropriation of Rs.70 million belonging to Krrish Company yesterday informed Court that they have sought Attorney General’s advice regarding possible future legal action into the matter. Accordingly, Colombo Fort Magistrate Thilina Gamage fixed the case for September 21. MP Namal Rajapaksa was present in court in connection with the case filed for allegedly misappropriating Rs.70 million granted by Indian Real Estate Company Krish Lanka Pvt. Ltd, for the development of rugby in Sri Lanka.  The prosecution alleged that…

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Sri Lanka PM to take over as finance minister too

Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will take charge as finance minister as well, the president’s office has announced, and will lead talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the crisis-hit nation seeks a bailout. “Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was sworn in as finance, economic stabilisation and national policies minister before President Gotabaya Rajapaksa this morning,” a statement from the president’s office said on Wednesday. https://www.aljazeera.com/economy/2022/5/25/sri-lanka-pm-to-take-dual-charge-of-finance-minister

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Ousted Prime Minister, who should have been arrested by now for his role in the recent violence, is under state protection at tax payer expense

But will this interim government bring political stability? The man who is the primary cause for the economic ruin and on whom people have lost confidence is hiding behind the constitution and continuing as an autocratic president. Aragalaya demands him to step down. At least a couple of party leaders in the opposition had declared that they would not, on principle, join RW’s interim government as long as GR remains in that position. In the meantime, the ousted Prime Minister, who should have been arrested by now for his role…

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Thousands of Tamil Civilians Killed During War in May 2009 Commemorated at Mullivaaikkaal; Victims Remembered at Galle Face Green in Multi- ethnic event with Moving Speeches made in Sinhala, Tamil and English; ”Kanji” (porridge) Distributed in Coconut shells.

By Meera Srinivasan Scores of people on Wednesday gathered in Mullivaikkal village, in Sri Lanka’s northern Mullaitivu district, to remember the tens of thousands of Tamil civilians who were brutally killed in the final stages of the civil war in May 2009, when the armed forces crushed the LTTE. Simultaneously, dozens came together expressing solidarity in a rare public remembrance event in capital Colombo, at Galle Face, the ocean front where citizens’ groups are protesting for 40 days now, asking President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to quit over the economic crisis stifling…

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“Gota must go. But the opposition should put the people before politics, too, and take some responsibility for extricating Sri Lanka from its predicament” — The Economist

(This article from “The Economist” appeared in the Leaders section of the print edition under the headline “Gota go”) On paper, at least, Sri Lanka is one of the wealthiest countries in South Asia, ranked by the un on a par with much of eastern Europe in terms of development. Yet the country of 22m people is suffering severe food shortages, locked petrol pumps and power cuts lasting as long as 13 hours a day. The currency has lost nearly half its value against the dollar over the past two…

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“It is essential for the country that your govt wins the legitimacy of opposition support and is not seen as a Rajapaksa clone” – An Open Letter to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe From Krishantha Prasad Cooray

Dear Prime Minister, As I watched you take oaths at the Presidential Secretariat, my mind was drawn to the last time you did so, on 16 December 2018, on day 52 of the 52-day coup plot that was mounted against Lankan democracy. On that Sunday morning, you were flanked by your wife, Dr. Maithri Wickremasinghe and several senior opposition MPs in what still feels like the finest hour in the history of our constitutional democracy. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe Several political parties rallied around you, putting the constitution before party…

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The 4th estate in the chambers of democracy

Media freedom is a promise that has been common among every government that comes to power, although each of their tenures has, equally commonly, been marked by incidents that have violated or undermined media freedom. The latest of such incidents was reported on Tuesday (17), sadly from the venue that is meant to set an example for the rest of the country – Parliament. According to reports, two Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna MPs had allegedly snatched the mobile phones of two journalists – Prageeth Perera and Kasun Samaraweera – for…

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From Mullivaikkal to Nakba and Ballymurphy, Truth is the First Victim

Sri Lanka is grappling with its worst economic crisis since its independence in 1948. But amid this serious economic situation, Tamils on the island and around there world are going to commemorate the 13th anniversary of the civil war’s end on May 18, a war that lasted from 1983 to 2009, ushering in the so-called  Mullivaikkal massacre committed by the Sri Lankan Army. Almost at a similar time every year on May 15, around 12.4 million Palestinians around the world commemorate the Nakba or catastrophe, which refers to the ethnic cleansing of Palestine by Israelis and the near…

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Rulers, who ruined Sri Lanka, must pay the price

United National Party (UNP) leader Ranil Wickremesinghe was appointed as Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister last Thursday. His appointment comes at a time when the country is struggling to overcome its worst ever economic crisis, since gaining independence from the British in 1948 and in the midst of a soaring cost of living, severe shortage of essential commodities including medicines and medical equipment, domestic gas, petrol, diesel and kerosene. He has taken up the challenge of rebuilding the badly bloodied, battered and bruised country when none of the other political party…

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India top court frees ex-PM Rajiv Gandhi’s killer

India’s Supreme Court has ordered the release of one of the convicts involved in the 1991 murder of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi. AG Perarivalan was in jail for over 30 years. In 1998, he was sentenced to death, but it was later commuted. Arrested at 19, Perarivalan was convicted for procuring batteries that were used in the bomb to kill Gandhi. Gandhi was assassinated by a female suicide bomber as he addressed an election rally in Tamil Nadu state.

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What is the point of this Parliament’ – Shanakiyan queries

A heated situation erupted in Parliament when Illankai Tamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) MP Shanakiyan Rasamanickam yesterday (17), alleged that Leader of the House Dinesh Gunawardena stopped him chairing Parliamentary Sitting  and invited SLPP MP Shantha Bandara to preside, when he was invited to the chair by the staff. Raising a Privilege Matter in the House, Rasmanickam said, when he was invited to chair the Sitting, Gunawardena sent messages to the Secretary General of Parliament asking Bandara to be invited instead of him. “This is a matter of my privilege. Before…

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Gammanpila calls for arrest of all involved

While insisting the 9 May attack was State terrorism, MP Udaya Gammanpila yesterday (17), called for the arrest of all politicians who instigated the attack on peaceful GotaGoGama protesters to restore public faith on law and order. Speaking in Parliament, Gammanpila extended his condolences to the family of MP Amarakeerthi Athukorala who was killed in Nittambuwa and MPs whose properties were damaged during the unrest. “We have to condemn all kinds of terrorism equally. The attack on GotaGoGama protesters was State terrorism. Those who attacked the protesters were summoned by…

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Sri Lanka honours Tamil war-dead after 13 years

Thousands of Tamils killed in Sri Lanka’s decades-long separatist war were commemorated on Wednesday for the first time outside the minority’s heartland in the north and east of the country. Clergy from Buddhist, Hindu and Christian communities offered prayers in Colombo and lit a clay lamp for those who perished between 1972 and May 2009 when the fighting ended. The ceremony coincided with the 13th anniversary of the ending of hostilities. https://www.france24.com/en/live-news/20220518-sri-lanka-honours-tamil-war-dead-after-13-years

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Missing Persons Families to go after perpetrators of late 1980s disappearances

Ask P’ment to release those including Prez implicated in CoIs’ report  Cops, Army personnel and politicos named, Families of the Disappeared org. claims BY Dinitha Rathnayake  The Families of the Disappeared organisation in Sri Lanka is calling on the Parliament to release all the names collected by Presidential Commissions of Inquiry (CoIs) into the alleged perpetration of enforced disappearances in the late 1980s, including the list that names President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for his role in the Matale District where more than 700 persons disappeared while he was in charge. “The…

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Sri Lanka marks 13 years of Mullivaikal massacre amid mass anti-Rajapakse protests

Today, on May 18, millions of people worldwide are commemorating the 13th anniversary of the massacre at Mullivaikal that ended Sri Lanka’s horrific, 26-year communal civil war. On May 18, 2009, the Sri Lankan army finally surrounded 400,000 Tamil civilians and surviving Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) fighters in a 6km radius around Mullivaikal. The Sri Lankan government had initially declared the area a “no fire zone” and told civilians to go there to be safe. However, the army then launched a mass artillery barrage on the men, women…

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