Many Attempts By Diaspora Tigers To Foment Violence In Sri Lanka

By D.B.S.Jeyaraj The ongoing investigation conducted by the Police Terrorism Investigation Department(TID) into the assassination plot targeting Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Jaffna district MP Mathiaparanam Abraham Sumanthiran has unearthed more details about the conspiracy hatched by “tigerish” elements in the Global Tamil Diaspora. Five former members of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE) now in …

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When I was Secretary, We Took Action When People Like Nediyavan Tried to Resume Terrorist Activities” – Gotabhaya Rajapaksa

By Kelum Bandara Former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, in an interview with Daily Mirror speaks about his future plans, diplomatic ties he developed during the war time and the charges levelled against him. Excerpts From The interview: \ Q As the former Defence Secretary, how do you analyse the current situation of the country? There …

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“I am Extremely Unhappy With the Way Our People Are Treated By This Govt” -TNA Leader R.Sampanthan in Parliament

By Meera Srinivasan After two years of engaging the Sri Lankan government on reconciliation and constitutional reform, the country’s Tamil polity seems to be losing patience, if Leader of Opposition R. Sampanthan’s address in Parliament is any indication. On Wednesday, the veteran Tamil leader attacked the government that, he said, was treating the minority Tamils …

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“My Husband Was Not a Traitor” Says Ex-LTTE Deputy Leader Gopalaswamy Mahendrarajah alias “Mahathaya”‘s Wife Yogeshwari.

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan With the sea of information we have received through media and books about the LTTE and the 30-year-long war, the man called ‘Mahaththaya’ captured the attention of all as he was given a Sinhala name unlike the rest of the Tamil Tiger fighters. While top Eastern Commander like Karuna Amman had …

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Alleged LTTE Suspects Arrested in Narahenpita With Caps Bearing Tiger Insignia Further Remanded Till March 1st

By Lakmal Sooriyagoda Three alleged LTTE suspects including Subramaniam Nagulerasa alias Nagulan arrested over the seizure of several caps bearing the LTTE logo in Narahenpita were yesterday ordered to be further remanded till March 1 by Colombo Additional Magistrate Aruni Artigala. The Additional Magistrate is to announce her bail order regarding the suspects on the …

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Ex-LTTE Cadres with T-56 and 46 Cartridges Arrested by Police on Mullaitheevu – Batticaloa Bus After Anonymous Tel Call Tip Off

By Ananth Palakidnar Three persons in possession of a T-56 assault rifle and 46 cartridges have been arrested by Police in Mullaitivu, while they were en route to Batticaloa last Tuesday. The arrest came when Police acted on an anonymous call leading them to a passenger bus in Oorani that was en route to Batticaloa …

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“We are Answerable to the People of this Country and not to the International Community” – Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera

(Speech made by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, MP., during the Adjournment moved by the Leader of the Opposition, Hon. R. Sampanthan, in Parliament on 22 February 2017) Hon. Speaker, • I thank the Honourable Leader of Opposition for raising this important issue in this House today – an issue on which the …

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“Ranil as Opposition Leader Told Parliament Sarath Fonseka was Responsible For Abduction and Assault of Journalist Keith Noyahr” -Dullas Alahapperuma

by Dasun Edirisinghe Matara District Parliamentarian Dullas Alahapperuma yesterday recalled that Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe as the then Opposition Leader in 2009 told Parliament that then Army Commander Lt. Gen. Sarath Fonseka was responsible for the abduction and assault on journalist Keith Noyahr. Answering a question at the Joint Opposition’s weekly media briefing at Dr …

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Wimal Weerawansa Wants His National Freedom Front Comprising 5 MP’s to be Treated as Separate Group in Parliament.

by Saman Indrajith National Freedom Front leader Wimal Weerawansa requested from Speaker Karu Jayasuriya yesterday in parliament to accept five NFF MPs including him as an independent group since they have severed all their connections with the UPFA. Speaker Jayasuriya said that he would refer the matter to the party leaders’ meeting scheduled for today …

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Court of Appeal Issues Notice on Six Persons Acquitted in Murder Trial of Tamil MP Nadarajajah Raviraj.

By Chitra Weerarathne The Court of appeal on February 21 issued notice on the six persons, indicted in the High Court, but later acquitted after the trial held in respect of the murder of the TNA parliamentarian Nadarajah Raviraj. The aggrieved party, the wife of N. Raviraj, had filed a revision application on the Court …

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Bar Association of Sri Lanka Responds to Accusations About Appointment of Mr. Ramanathan Kannan as High Court Judge.

Mr. Geoffrey Alagaratnam, PC, President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has responded to accusations directed at the BASL in respect of the recent appointment of Ramanathan Kannan as High Court judge. The following is the text of Mr. Alagaratnam’s statement: “There has been much speculation and allegations related to the above appointment …

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Lankan Govt Response to Tough Questions Posed by CEDAW Experts Dismays Women Rights Activists

By Dharisha Bastians Reporting from Geneva The Government of Sri Lanka faced tough questions from the UN women’s rights watchdog in Geneva yesterday, as it presented its four yearly periodic report and pleaded with the Committee to acknowledge advances and improvements on the condition of women in the country. “By all means push us and …

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Those Responsible For Recurring Political Violence In Sri Lanka Have Never Been Seriously Prosecuted

BY Niran Anketell When an historic Obama Presidency took control of Washington in early 2009, there was a wide expectation that the new administration would rectify one of the Bush administration’s greatest moral failings – its use of torture. Previously, Bush administration lawyers had drafted several legal memos, on which members of the CIA relied, …

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“Recurrence Of Violence Would Result In More Tamils Fleeing The Country” – Opposition Leader R.Sampanthan In Parliament

Hon. Speaker Parliament of Sri Lanka Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte. ADJOURNMENT MOTION Question relating to matter of Public importance to be raised on 22nd February 2017 at the conclusion of questions by Mr. R Sampanthan, Member of Parliament, Leader of Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK) and Leader of the Opposition. All people who lived in Sri …

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Kabir Hashim Challenges Ravi Karunanayake’s Arbitrary Decision to Pay US $ 154 Million As Compensation For Cancelling Aircraft Purchasing Deal

By Dhammika Ranaweera A determined stand-off between Minister of Public Enterprises Development Kabir Hashim and the Finance Ministry at yesterday’s Cabinet meeting sent emotions. roaring in connection with a clash of opinions on the amount of compensation to be paid for cancellation of an agreement signed by the previous regime to purchase aircraft. Hashim objected …

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Battling Their “Brothers”In Tamil Nadu Who Compete For Fish in the Palk Bay

By Meera Srinivasan The first thing that struck me about Rajachandran was the way he spoke: pausing between words and raising his voice when he emphasised a point.He watched my face to make sure I followed what he was saying. There was no difficulty understanding him; even some of the unfamiliar Jaffna Tamil words were …

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Lankan Womens Rights Activists Lobby At Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) Sessions in Geneva

By Dharisha Bastians reporting from Geneva Lankan activists gathered in the Swiss canton of Geneva this week to lobby the United Nations women’s rights watchdog – CEDAW – pressing the UN committee to urge the Sri Lankan Government to meet its obligations to protect women in the country from discriminatory practices, including oppressive marriage laws, …

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India Advises TNA To Negotiate For Political Solution Without Demanding North – East Merger

By Meera Srinivasan Indian Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar has asked the Tamil leadership in Sri Lanka to continue negotiating a political solution with the government, without being fixated on the demand for merging the island’s northern and eastern provinces. “The Indian Foreign Secretary said we needed to think in terms of alternatives which might provide …

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Gang Of Goondas Abduct And Molest Popular South Indian Actress Bhavana in Kerala After Hijacking Her Vehicle

Popular South Indian actress of Malayalam ethnicity Bhavana was reportedly abducted and molested by a gang of goondas when she was returning home from a shoot in Ernakulam district in Kerala. The incident took place on Friday Feb 17th when the men stopped and hijacked Bhavana’s car near Athani in Angamaly. The actress was molested …

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Indian Premier Modi’s “Point Man” Ram Madhav Visits Lanka to Assess Whether Gotabhaya Could Split From Mahinda For “High” Political Office.

By Meera Srinivasan Even as Sri Lanka’s former President Mahinda Rajapaksa angles for a political comeback, New Delhi appears to be weighing up possible political shifts in the island, including a split in the Rajapaksa camp. On February 10, BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav, known to be Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s point man on …

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Economic Lethargy and Incompetence of Present Govt Could Make People Feel Nostalgic About Rajapaksa Regime

By Ranga Jayasuriya A few years back under the former regime, it was not a nice spectacle when slum dwellers in Colombo were evicted by gun-toting soldiers to make room for development activities. Decent people were right to feel outraged. However, many of those folks might not have noticed it yet. But, this government’s manifest …

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India will not Press for Merger of Northern and Eastern Sri Lankan Provinces States Indian Foreign Secy Jaishankar

By P.K.Balachandran India will not be pressing Sri Lanka to merge the Northern and Eastern Provinces to form a single Tamil-majority, Tamil-speaking province as envisaged by the India-Sri Lanka Accord of 1987, the Indian Foreign Secretary S.Jaishankar told the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) here on Monday. He was reacting to a demand made by the …

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Indian-origin Tamils Participating in Governance Within the Sri Lankan National Mainstream Appreciated by Indian Foreign Secy

By P.K.Balachandran The Indian Foreign Secretary S.Jaishankar expressed his happiness about the Indian Origin Tamils (IOTs) being in the Sri Lankan national mainstream, fully participating in governance and securing benefits for themselves, Mano Ganeshan, leader of the Tamil Progressive Alliance (TPA), told Express after meeting the top Indian official here on Monday. According to Ganeshan, …

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Indian Foreign Secretary Jaishankar urges Tamil National Alliance to unite to fight for Tamils’ rights

By P.K.Balachandran Indian Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar has urged the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) to unite to fight for the Tamils’ rights, including their rights under the proposed constitution, and cooperate with India in the economic development of the Tamil-speaking Northern and Eastern Provinces. Meeting the TNA top brass ahead of his meetings with the …

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Military Intelligence Hit Squad Operating Out of Kohuwela Camp Used For Assassinating,Abducting and Attacking Journalists from 2006 to 2010

Sri Lanka’s police made a major breakthrough Saturday in their investigations in to the abduction of news editor Keith Noyahr as well as a string of other attacks, disappearances and killings of journalists by arresting at least three military personnel attached to a hit squad which operated from Kohuwela. Police headquarters in a statement said …

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UNP Allegation About Sarath Fonseka’s “Special Team” Being Responsible for Attacks on Journalists Must Be Investigated Too -“The Island”

( Full Text of Editorial Appearing in “The Island” of February 20th 2017 Under the heading “CID’s Nelsonian eye”) The CID has woken up like Rip Van Winkle. It has arrested three military intelligence personnel including a major over the abduction of the then Associate Editor of The Nation newspaper, Keith Noyahr, way back in …

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Are Organizers of Tamil Political Protests Using Them To Attack Political Rivals ?

By Meera Srinivasan The small group of Tamils that met top Ministers in Colombo on February 9 conveyed one thing emphatically— their patience was wearing thin. All the members of the group that had travelled nearly six hours by bus from Sri Lanka’s Northern Province to Colombo have been searching for their missing relatives for …

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Ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa Wants to Safeguard The Independence of the Judiciary

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa has urged the legal fraternity to pressure President Maithripala Sirisena to reverse the controversial appointment of Ramanathan Kannan as a High Court judge. The former President also pressed them to take tangible measures to end politicization of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL). The following is the full text of …

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Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) is Real Target of Orchestrated Protests in Kaeppaapilavu and Vavuniya.

By P.K.Balachandran Factionalism within the multi-party Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has been at the root of the on-going agitations in Kepapilavu and Puthukudiyiruppu in Mullaitivu district and the just concluded stir on the issue of disappearances in Vavuniya, sources in the TNA told Express on Sunday. The Vavuniya agitation was directed by the Eelam People …

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Major Prabath Bulathwatte, Sgt Duminda weeraratne and Sgt Hemachandra Perera of Military Intelligence Arrested Over Attack on Ex-Newspaper Editor Keith Noyahr.

Criminal Investigation Detectives yesterday arrested an Army officer and two Sergeants over the May 2008 attack on journalist Keith Noyahr. The arrests came after the trio were summoned to CID headquarters on Friday and interrogated. The trio are Major Prabath Bulathwatte, Sergeant Duminda Weeraratne and Sergeant Hemachandra Perera. The formal arrests were made yesterday after …

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Controversy Over Role Played By “Lawyer Leaders” of Bar Association in Appointing An Eastern Lawyer as Northern High Court Judge

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene Heated controversy surrounding the recent appointment of a Batticoloa lawyer as a Northern High Court judge by President Maithripala Sirisena raises a fundamental point of contention. Even on the most innocent of explanations, ‘leaders of the Bar’ must refrain from putting themselves into situations where a disturbing lack of clarity arises …

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Land Reforms Commission Claims Ownership of Lands to be Leased by Board of Investment to Nandana Lokuwithana for Tyre Factory

By Namini Wijedasa A land transaction between the Board of Investment (BOI) and controversial businessman Nandana Lokuwithana has become more complicated. Mr. Lokuwithana’s Rigid Tyre Corporation (Pvt) Ltd is tipped to receive 100 acres of land from the gazetted BOI industrial zone at Wagawatta in Horana. The deal was negotiated by the Development Strategies Ministry …

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Upali Wijewardene: Sri Lanka’s Beloved Home-Grown Tycoon

By D.B.S.Jeyaraj Upali Wijewardene known widely as Upali was arguably Sri Lanka’s first home-grown tycoon of the post – Independence years who captured the popular imagination of the people at large. The Island nation has produced several indigenous business magnates and industrialists of great repute but there was none quite like Upali Wijewardene. He interacted …

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President Sirisena Holds Tri-partite Talks with UNP, SLFP and TNA to Break Deadlock in Constitutional Negotiations

By Dharisha Bastians President Maithripala Sirisena has stepped into break a deadlock in constitutional negotiations, holding a round of tripartite talks with the United National Party (UNP), the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) and his own Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) late last month. Prime Minister fgjRanil Wickremesinghe attended the tripartite discussions, together with UNP Chairman …

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New Constitution Making Process in Sri Lanka Is In the Doldrums

By P.K.Balachandran The process of drafting a brand new constitution for Sri Lanka is in the doldrums though many steps had already been completed and the process was in the final stages early last month itself. The six subcommittees on various subjects had submitted their reports based on the widest possible public consultations. The Steering …

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Tamil Nadu’s 25th Chief Minister Edappaady Palaniswamy Must Prove He has Majority Support in the Legislature Within 15 Days

By Anna Isaac The red beacon has been removed from O Panneerselvam’s car and shifted to the vehicle of Edappadi K Palaniswamy. The confusion over whether Tamil Nadu has an ‘interim Chief Minister’ or a ‘caretaker Chief Minister’ has also ended. Edappadi K Palaniswamy has been sworn in as the 25th Chief Minister of Tamil …

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“Sinna Amma” Sasikala’s Chosen Man Edappadi Palaniswamy Will Be the New Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu State

By Dhanya Rajendran It’s official: Governor Vidyasagar Rao has made up his mind to call Edappadi Palaniswami to form the government in Tamil Nadu. He will be sworn in on Thursday evening, but the drama isn’t over just yet. Sasikala’s chosen man now has 15 days to prove his majority on the floor of the …

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Chandrika Kumaratunga Wants SLFP to Take a “Clean Break” From the Joint Opposition Faction Led by Mahinda Rajapaksa

By Dharisha Bastians Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Tuesday admitted that there had been a breakdown in party discipline in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party and suggested a “clean break” from the Joint Opposition led by her successor Mahinda Rajapaksa. The Joint Opposition was not a “huge threat” to the future of the SLFP, Kumaratunga …

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AIADMK Gen Secy “Sinna Amma”Sasikala Becomes Prisoner No 9234 in Bengaluru Central Prison at Parappana Agrahara

After a day of high drama in Tamil Nadu, AIADMK interim general secretary V.K. Sasikala, convicted by the Supreme Court in the disproportionate assets case on Tuesday, surrendered at a special court, a few hundred metres from Bengaluru Central Prison at Parappana Agrahara, and became prisoner no. 9234. Before leaving for Bengaluru by road on …

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Trump Administration to Further Expand US -India Strategic Military Alliance in a Bid to Contain and/or Thwart Rise of China.

By Deepal Jayasekera and Keith Jones The Trump administration has served notice that it intends to expand the Indo-US military strategic alliance. This is not surprising, but nonetheless highly significant: first, because it underscores the new administration’s intention to pursue confrontation with China; and second, because Washington’s drive to harness India to its military-strategic offensive …

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Powers Removed By Urban Development Authority to be Taken Back By Provincial Councils Says Western Chief Minister Devapriya.

by Maheesha Mudugamuwa Provincial Councils (PC) would introduce a controversial convention very shortly to take back and regain the powers that had been removed from them by the Urban Development Authority (UDA), Western Province Chief Minister Isura Devapriya said yesterday. Addressing the media at the Chief Minister’s office in Colombo, Devapriya said the charter would …

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Sri Lankan Asylum Seekers Detained in Australia Who Return Home Wont be Prosecuted Assures Prime Minister Wickremesinghe

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has urged compatriots who are being held in Australian-run immigration detention centres to come home. Ranil Wickremesinghe claimed the Sri Lankans had broken the law in trying to flee to Australia but insisted they would not face prosecution if they returned. “Come back. All is forgiven,” Wickremesinghe said as he stood …

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Govt Will Launch a “Hearts and Minds” Campaign to Mobilise Support for the New Constitution Announces Chandrika Kumaratunga

By Dharisha Bastians The Government will launch a hearts and minds campaign to win support for a new constitution in the coming months, former President Chandrika Kumaratunga said on Tuesday. The campaign is expected to be modelled along the lines of Kumaratunga’s own Sudu Nelum Movement initiative in 1995, which sought to build bridges between …

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Can Constitutional Reform Provide a Soution to the Tamil National Question?

By Sumanasiri Liyanage A German friend of mine whom I met after 7 years in the middle of our conversation asked me about the state reforms project of the Yahapalana government. He said that many people he met had been sanguine about them in spite of some minor difficulties. Lankans have been talking about the …

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Sri Lanka and Australia sign MoUs on Development Cooperation and strengthening Cooperation in Sport

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, who is visiting Australia at the invitation of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, held discussions with the Australian Premier at the Parliament House in Canberra yesterday. Following bilateral discussions between the two sides, the two leaders witnessed the signing of two Memorandums of Understanding on development cooperation and on strengthening cooperation in …

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“Bring On a Referendum on the New Constitution, Bring it on Baby Bring it on”

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka “Let’s Get It On…….” – Marvin Mangala Samaraweera announced to the Foreign Correspondents Association last Tuesday evening that the government had decided that it was “worth the risk” to go for a referendum on a new Constitution. Lakshman Kiriella reiterated this in Parliament, saying that the government’s decision was that it would …

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CV Wigneswaran Makes Cardinal Error of Attacking MA Sumanthiran Out of Jealousy.

By Rathindra Kuruwita So Northern Province Chief Minister, C.V. Wigneswaran and the gang just held the second instalment of Ezhuga Tamil (Arise Tamils) festival (?) in Batticaloa. Then again why shouldn’t they? The first one was, in my estimate, a success. They managed to bring a few thousand people onto the roads; a lot of …

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Hakeem and Nazeer Join Forces to Gain and Maintain Control of Muslim Congress and Party Properties

by Ifham Nizam The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) will continue to have more problems of a serious nature unless Party Leader Rauff Hakeem puts an end to acts that favour some who were keen on building their financial strengths, neglecting party politics. SLMC officials told The Sunday Leader that there are frequent clashes within …

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President Sirisena Insists on Retaining Power to Declare Emerggency Rule With Simple Majority Approval in Parliament Instead of Two-Thirds.

By Vijith Samarasinghe Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has blocked a move to require a two-thirds parliamentary vote, rather than the current simple majority, to approve a presidential declaration of emergency. He ordered the removal of a clause to that effect in the proposed National Action Plan for Protection and Promotion of Human Rights (NHRAP). …

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Dambulla Situation Returns to Normal: All Muslim Owned Businesses Functioning Smoothly and Safely.

NEWS UPDATE The situation in Dambulla has returned to Normal. Al Musli owned businesses in Dambulla were fully open on Monday February 13th. Representatives of the Dambulla Sinhala Traders Association and Muslim Businesspersons had a friendly discussion to resolve outstanding problems on Sunday Feb 12th. Meanwhile the Muslim restaurant manager and Sinhala customer whose altercation …

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Indian Nation’s Confidence in the Judiciary Restored After Supreme Court Ruling on Tamil Nadu Political Corruption Case Appeal.

By N. Sathiya Moorrthy By setting aside Karnataka high court Judge C Kumaraswamy’s acquittal order and restoring trial court Judge John Michael Cunha’s verdict in its entirety on Tuesday, the Supreme Court has reiterated the nation’s confidence in the judiciary, especially in matters of dealing with political bosses who have made it a habit of …

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Solution Through Consensus Must be In -Between Concern About Separation and Need For Greater Autonomy – Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu

By Amra Ismail Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, the Executive Director of the Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) is an expert in governance and peace. He has submitted research papers on the subjects in international conferences. In 2013, he attended a High-level Civil Society Round Table during the tenure of Barack Obama, the former President of the …

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“Mannarkudi Mafia’ Scheme to make “Sinna Amma” Sasikala the chief Minister of Tamil Nadu Foiled by Supreme Court Verdict Upholding Previous Conviction for Corruption.

Sasikala’s political career has hit a roadblock even before it took off. The Supreme Court set aside the Karnataka High Court verdict acquitting Sasikala, her niece Ilavarasi, nephew VN Sudhakaran and late CM Jayalalithaa in the Disproportionate Assets case. In doing so, the apex court has restored the Special Court’s judgement by Michael D’Cunha in …

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Tamil Peoples Council Headed by CV Wigneswaran Launches “Ezhuga Thamizh”(Arise Tamil) Communal Campaign in East

By Subash Somachandran and S. Jayanth The Tamil People’s Council (TPC), a Tamil nationalist organisation, has called an Ezhuga Thamizh (Rise up Tamils) protest on February 10 in Batticaloa in Sri Lanka’s Eastern Province. The TPC held a similar demonstration in Jaffna last September. The purpose of the protest is to divert the growing social …

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NDP Backed Neethan Shan Wins Ward 42 By-Election With 4763 Votes To Become First Tamil Canadian to Serve on Toronto City Council

By Betsy Powell NDP-backed Neethan Shan will be the first Tamil-Canadian to serve on Toronto city council after he won a byelection in Ward 42 Scarborough-Rouge River, according to unofficial results on the city web site. He won 4,763 votes in a crowded field of 29 candidates in a part of the city that held …

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Ex-LTTE Commandr “Col”Karuna’s new Party “Tamil United Freedom Front” Will Engage in Cooperative and not Confrontational Politics

By P.K.Balachandran Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan, alias Karuna Amman,who was formerly the LTTE’s Special Commander for Batticaloa and Amparai, says that his new party, Tamizhar Aikkiya Suthanthira Munnani ( Tamil United Freedom Front) is opting for “cooperative politics” (inakkapaadu arasiyal) in place of the current “confrontational politics” (muranpaadu arasiyal). Speaking to Express on Monday, a day after …

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Cabinet Approves the Gazetting of Bill to Criminalise Enforced Disappearances Discloses Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera.

By Dharisha Bastians The Government has proposed draft legislation to criminalise disappearances in line with its international obligations, even as the country grapples with the legacy of 65,000 people still missing after two insurgencies and a civil war. The International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance Bill was gazetted by order …

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Ex- Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran Has Become The Favourite ‘Whipping Boy’ Of Our Times!

By Janitha Devapriya Arjuna Mahendran, the former Governor of the Central Bank, has become the favourite whipping boy for Government critics, Joint Opposition and the JVP, now running through the fifth month. Ever since the COPE Report on the bond issue of 27 February 2015 was presented to Parliament in October 2016, the former Governor …

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UN Report Reveals Culture of Torture and White Van Abductions Continue Under Present Govt Also

By Gamini Akmeemana The UN report published on Friday January 28 describing a ‘culture of torture’ in this county has been described as a wake up call. But it’s doubtful if it’s going to wake anyone up. The report by special rapporteur Juan Mendez said there were credible reports to show that the notorious ‘white …

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Northern Chief Minister Wigneswaran Wont Allow any Extension Move to Develop Palaly Airport in Jaffna Into an International Airport

By Jehan Haniff Northern Chief Minister C.V. Vigneswaran has vowed that he will not sign any document approving the extension of the Palaly Airport based some eighteen kilometers north of Jaffna town. Vigneswaran gave this assurance at last Thursday’s Provincial Council meeting in Jaffna where he mentioned that he would “not approve the runway extension …

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Mansoor Cader Replaces Hassen Ali as Muslim Congress Secretary – General in Political Victory for Leader Rauff Hakeem

Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) has appointed Mohamed Mansoor Cader as the General Secretary of the party replacing Hassan Ali. The decision was taken at a meeting of the SLMC High Command on Saturday evening and was announced at the SLMC’s 27th Delegates’ Meeting held at the BMICH yesterday by party leader Minister Rauff Hakim. …

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Govt Will Not Legalise Prostitution or Same Sex Marriages in Sri Lanka -Thalatha Athukorale

by Maheesha Mudugamuwa Prostitution and same sex marriages would not be legalised in Sri Lanka, Foreign Employment Minister Thalatha Athukorala said. Minister Athukorala made the announcement amidst revelation that more than 4,500 new HIV cases and 24 AIDS deaths were reported in Sri Lanka in the first six months of 2016, with the number of …

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Buried LTTE Arsenals Unearthed by Security Forces and Police in Sarasalai, Muhamalai, Periyamadhu and Kattaiparichaan on Different Dates

By Dinasena Rathugamage Police recovered a stock of explosives including landmines buried at a location near Sarasalai in Chavakachcheri in Jaffna on Saturday (11). The police found 34 hand grenades, 10 RPG bombs, mortars and several other explosive items. The area is not currently inhabited by people, police said adding that they believed the explosives …

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China Reaching for the Indian Ocean Colonizes Sri Lanka Telling India to Stay Off the Island

By Panos Mourdoukoutas After claiming South China Sea to be its own sea, telling America to stay off its islands, China is reaching for the Indian Ocean, telling India to stay off its own colony, Sri Lanka. That’s something investors in Southeast Asian markets should keep a wary eye on, as it opens yet another …

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Re-colonisation Project Transferring Ownership of Sri Lanka from the People to Foreigners

by Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka Would you undergo or put a loved one through an unnecessary but quite drastic, risky surgery? This is precisely what the UNP leadership and Chandrika Kumaratunga are trying perpetrate on the Sri Lankan body politic, through a new Constitution. They seek to effect such change to the Constitution that cannot be limited …

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Minister Champika Ranawaka’s Alleged Attempt to Confine his ex-Valet to Lunatic Asylum Must be Probed by Sri Lanka Medical Council

by C.A. Chandraprema Last week Harsha Bandara Tilakasiri a former personal staff member and valet to minister Champika Ranawaka made a formal complaint to the Chairman of the Sri Lanka Medical Council, Professor Carlo Fonseka, alleging that he had been given treatment against his will at the Angoda mental hospital for a mental illness that …

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Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias “Col” Karuna Leaves SLFP and Forms new “Tamil United Freedom Party” for North and East

Former Eastern Commander of the Liberation of Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and Deputy Minister Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias ‘Karuna Amman’, launched a new political party, “Tamil United Freedom Party” in Batticaloa yesterday, breaking away from the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), in which he was Vice President during the previous regime. Announcing the inauguration of …

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Hippocrates, Hypocrites and the Lucrative Medical Profession in Sri Lanka

by Reggie Ponnampalam At the outset, let me categorically state that I am not for SAITM. Then again, I must admit, I don’t have anything against them. Whether they are right in exercising their right is not something I want to write about. It’s just that I am allergic to doctors. I wonder if you …

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President Sirisena in a Surprise Move Appoints 4 Member Committee Headed by Ex- Supreme Court Judge Nimal Dissanayake to Probe Shortcomings at “Lake House”.

Sri Lanka’s festering tensions between the President and the Prime Minister came out into the open again, this time over the administration of the strategically-important Lake House publishing enterprise. In a surprise move, President Maithripala Sirisena on Tuesday night appointed a four-member committee to investigate Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Limited which is better known as …

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Control of Hambantota in Sri Lanka and Gwadar in Pakistan will give China Easy Access to Strategic Gulf of Ormuz.

By G.Parthasarathy Confident of victory in Sri Lanka’s prolonged and bloody ethnic conflict, President Mahinda Rajapaksa decided to develop the port of Hambantota and its neighbourhood, along Sri Lanka’s south-western coast. He was determined to make this region his impregnable political base. Taking note of Rajapaksa’s aversion to India and the western world, China obliged …

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Vimukthi Jayasundara Becomes First Sinhalese To Direct an Indian Film and First Sri Lankan to Make a Bengali Movie

By P.K.Balachandran Links between Indian and Sri Lankan cinemas have had a long history, going back to the late 1940s. But while many Indians have directed Sri Lankan movies, only three Sri Lankans have directed Indian films so far. The three Sri Lankans are: Batticaloa-born Balu Mahendra, maker of the prize winning Veedu, Sandhya Ragam …

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Will Norway Hand Over Diaspora Tiger Leader “Nediyavan” to Sri Lanka?

By D.B.S.Jeyaraj “What was your first military operation”? was a question posed to Veluppillai Prabhakaran in a media interview many years ago. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE) Leader replied ” Alfred Durayappah”. Prabhakaran was of course referring to the popular former mayor and ex-MP for Jaffna Alfred Thangarajah Durayappah who was gunned down within …

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Moderate Tamils and Muslims in East Perturbed by Wigneswaran& Co Staging “Ezhuga Thamizh”(Arise Tamil) Rally in Batticaloa

By Dharisha Bastians Reporting from Batticaloa Mohammed Ibrahim, a 40-year-old Kattankudy businessman, looked up after the gunfire stopped. Dozens of men, who had been kneeling, face down in prayer just like him only moments ago, lay unmoving around him. On 3 August 1990, Tiger cadres wielding machine guns and hand grenades stormed into two mosques …

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“I am not Against Investigations but I am Just Saying Do It Properly”- Namal Rajapaksa

by Meera Srinivasan India misinterpreted the Rajapaksa administration’s relationship with China, but is silent on the current government’s engagement with the rising super power, Sri Lankan parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa, the eldest son of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, said. “We always made sure that Sri Lankan soil or waters was not used against any other country. …

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Speaker Karu Jayasuriya Instructs Authorities to Increase Security for TNA Parliamentarian MA Sumanthiran.

By Saman Indrajith Speaker Karu Jayasuriya yesterday instructed security authorities to increase the security allocated to TNA MP MA Sumanthiran. Making a special statement in parliament, the Speaker said that he had discussed the issue of MP Sumanthiran’s security with several MPs including party leaders and the latest situation had been assessed before making the …

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Sumanthiran MP Moves Adjournment Motion in Parliament Over Peoples Protest in Mullaitheevu and Lashes Out Against Govt for Not Returning Lands

By Dharisha Bastians The main opposition Tamil National Alliance yesterday accused the Government of apathy towards the plight of its citizens demanding the release of their lands in Mullaitivu, as a protest by residents of Keppapilavu entered its ninth day yesterday. TNA Jaffna District Legislator M.A. Sumanthiran who moved an adjournment motion in Parliament on …

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Sri Lanka To Request More Time From UN Human Rights Council to Implement Resolution Setting up Reconciliation and Transitional Justice Mechanism.

By Dharisha Bastians Sri Lanka will request more time at the UN Human Rights Council Session that convenes later this month, to implement the October 2015 resolution calling on the Government to establish mechanisms to deal with post-war reconciliation and justice for major rights abuses during the war. Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said he would …

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If Jayalalithaa Left Will Stipulating That Sasikala Succeed Her as Chief Minister Then Panneerselvam Ready to Accept it

By Dennis Jesudasan & T.K. Rohit Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam, who on Tuesday night turned the country’s attention on himself by meditating at Jayalalithaa’s memorial and going all out against AIADMK general secretary V.K. Sasikala, is a tired man. One can empathise with him as he has been constantly meeting his supporters and …

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Road to Reconciliation May Take De-tours but no U – Turn Assures Mangala Samaraweera

By Meera Srinivasan A new Constitution is the most potent weapon for non-recurrence of Sri Lanka’s conflict and would have to be given priority over accountability mechanisms, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said. The country, which suffered two youth insurrections and a 26-year-long war, had seen enough violence and bigotry, and needed checks and balances to …

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Panneerselvam Speaks Out About How he Was Forced to Resign Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Post to Pave the way for Sasikala.

On Tuesday night, after sitting on a samadhi at Jayalalithaa memorial at Marina beach for about 50 minutes, Chief Minister O Panneerselvam broke his silence – for the first ever time in his political career. What followed was a carefully crafted attack on his leader, AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala, and his colleagues. Panneerselvam noted …

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Govt is Confident About Winning a Referendum on the New Constitution says Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera

By Dharisha Bastians A new constitution would be Sri Lanka’s most “potent weapon” against preventing a return to violent conflict, Minister Mangala Samaraweera told the Foreign Correspondents Association on Tuesday night. As fears abound about a deadlock in ongoing constitutional negotiations, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera yesterday struck an optimistic note, expressing confidence that the Government …

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Govt Suspends Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) says Justice Minister; Sumanthiran Assassination Attempt Suspects to be Prosected Under Normal Law.

By Shamindra Ferdinando Justice and Buddhasasana Minister Wiejayadasa Rajapakse yesterday acknowledged the suspension of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) pending introduction of a new Counter Terrorism Law. Minister Rajapaksa said that as there had been concerns over the operation of the PTA, the government was now in the process of reviewing the anti-terrorism law. …

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Sri Lanka to Give Priority to Constitution Drafting Over Accountability Mechanisms

By P.K.Balachandran The Sirisena-Wickremesinge government in Sri Lanka will give priority to drafting a new constitution for the country over setting up war crimes accountability mechanisms like the Judicial Mechanism and the Truth-Seeking Commission, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said here on Tuesday. Speaking to the Foreign Correspondents Association, Samaraeera said that the new constitution, which …

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Prime Minister Wickremesinghe Under Pressure From UNP Members to take Over Finance Ministry and Appoint Karunanayake as Petroleum Resources Minister.

Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe s under pressure from his party to take the finance portfolio and head off internal dissension, sources close to the leadership said Friday. Stalwarts within the ruling United National Party (UNP) have been speculating about cabinet changes amid unrest over Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake’s style of leading fiscal policy, …

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TNA Grudgingly Acknowledges Danger Posed by LTTE Rump After Assassination Attempt on Sumanthiran Goes Awry.

By Shamindra Ferdinando An abortive attempt to assassinate Jaffna District Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran in January this year sent shock waves through the Tamil community. The exposure of the reprehensible conspiracy, by a former member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), just before Christmas last year, led to the arrest …

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Speaker Karu Overrides Premier Ranil to Prevent Breach of Standing Orders in Answering Questions Raised in Parliament.

By Sandasen Marasinghe and Disna Mudalige Speaker Karu Jayasuriya said that he will not allow for the establishing of a new tradition of breaching the existing Standing Orders as long as he is in the chair. When Social Empowerment and Welfare Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake was about to answer a question raised in Parliament on …

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Pigeons Fly From Kilinochchi on Independence Day With Message of Peace to Wattala

A special release of Pigeons on Independence Day took place at the Kilinochchi railway station, with the pigeons returning to their home in Wattala. The event was organized as a special peace event as the pigeons carried messages of unity and fellowship. The event was attended by religious heads, the GA of the area Mr …

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Auditor-General Wijesinghe Speaks Out In Indirect Response to Finance Minister Karunanayake’s Scathing Criticism

By Chathuri Dissanayake In an apparent reply to the Finance Minister’s scathing criticism of him, the Auditor General (AG) yesterday said he would always speak openly and strive to maintain the institution’s transparency. dfh Highlighting that transparency and openness were two of the main features of good governance, AG Gamini Wijesinghe said that he was …

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Finance Minister Karunanayake’s Vituperative Comments Against Senior Central bank Officials are Unjustified

By Legal Eye I was extremely surprised and disappointed by the serious allegations made by the Minister of Finance on 24 January during the debate relating to the purported bond scam, against the Deputy Governor and Secretary to the Monetary Board and a few other officers of the Central Bank. DFT-12-13-9 The Minister alleged that …

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JR Jayewardene Wanted to “Burn Jaffna To The Ground” Twice in 1987 But Lankan Armed Forces Refused to Avoid Unacceptable Casualty Toll.

By Amit Baruah Sri Lanka was forced into making a deal with India as its own armed forces had twice refused to “take Jaffna”, then President J.R. Jayewardene has been quoted as saying in a declassified document, nearly 30 years after the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) was deployed in the island nation. Jayewardene told …

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Overseas LTTE Backed Plot To Assassinate TNA MP Sumanthiran in Jaffna Revealed

By D.B.S.Jeyaraj “Nallavan” (not his real name) is a Tamil youth living in a Northern village. He was a former member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) organization who had surrendered to the armed forces in May 2009. He was incarcerated for a period of time and released after undergoing a process of …

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Multi-Ethnic,Tri-Lingual School for Sinhala,Tamil and Muslim Students to be Built in Polonnaruwa With 300 Million Rupees From India.

India and Sri Lanka have entered into collaboration to build a multi-ethnic tri-lingual school in a north central district of the island nation that would provide opportunities to Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim students to learn in a multi-cultural environment. The MoU was signed by India’s High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Taranjit Singh Sandhu and Secretary …

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Group of Women in Batticaloa Utilise New Right To Information (RTI) Act to Renew Search for “Missing” Loved Ones .

By Meera Srinivasan Last week, when Sri Lanka’s Right To Information Act came into effect, a group of women in Batticaloa had a plan. Last week, when Sri Lanka’s Right To Information Act came into effect, a group of women in Batticaloa had a plan. After years of petitioning government offices and testifying to innumerable …

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Sri Lanka Must Have Its Own Version Of Development With An Agriculture First Economy.

By Eranda Ginige If I had a dollar for every time somebody said “Sri Lanka should be like Singapore”, I’d be a rich man. The odd thing is most of those people have never visited Singapore. Somehow we are made to believe Singapore as the perfect development standard, a utopian state where everything is so …

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AIADMK Gen Secy Sasikala Elected Party Leader in Legislative Assembly on Feb 5th Will Become Tamil Nadu Chief Minister on Feb 9th

By Dennis Jesudasan Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam proposed her name at a meeting of party MLAs in Chennai. AIADMK general secretary V.K. Sasikala was on Sunday elected as the Leader of the Legislature party by the MLAs in the party head office in Chennai paving the way for her swearing in as Chief …

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CV Wigneswaran Boycotts Independence Day Event In Jaffna Town and Participates in Protest Meetings in Mullaitheevu District

By P.K.Balachandran The Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Tamil-majority Northern Province, C.V.Wigneswaran, boycotted the 69 th. Sri Lankan Independence Day function here on Saturday, and instead attended protest meetings held at Keppapilavu and Puthukudiyiruppu in Mullaitivu district. The Governor of the Northern Province, Reginold Cooray, hoisted the national flag, but the Chief Minister chose not …

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Will Proposed Counter -Terrorism Act (CTA) Be Even More Draconian Than Existing Prevention of Terrorism Act(PTA)?

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene Is the essentially combative tone adopted by the Government to the Juan Mendez report finding that a “culture of torture” is still being practised in Sri Lanka quite wise, one might ask? Of course, we live in an age where, confounding his own advisors and despite solid evidence to the contrary, …

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President Sirisena Condemns “Opportunistic Forces” Campaigning Against Reconciliation as “Enemies of the Country”.

By P.K.Balachandran Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has dubbed those “opportunistic forces” which are campaigning against the on-going ethnic and religious reconciliation process as enemies of the country. “The government’s endeavor for reconciliation and communal harmony has been praised locally as well as internationally. The opportunistic forces that are against the on-going reconciliation process are …

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Ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa Intensifies Efforts to Topple Sirisena-Wickremesinghe Govt

By K. Ratnayake Former Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse has urged his supporters to help him topple the government. Addressing a January 27 rally of tens of thousands in the Colombo suburb of Nugegoda, Rajapakse denounced the government as “corrupt” and declared he was “ready to lead the force” to bring it down. Promoted as …

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Attempt to Smuggle Out Valuable “Valampuri Sangu” From East Lanka Detected by Police

By P.Sivaramakrishnan Seven people are in custody after appearing in court, charged with trying to sell the 18-inch shell. Police say the conch might have fetched $70,000 (£60,000). Its sale is banned under an international convention. It is feared that Sri Lanka is emerging as a hub for the illegal export of rare seashells. The …

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68 Years of Independence, Nation Building and the Future of Tamils in Sri Lanka

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj Sri Lanka will Celebrate its Sixty-eighth Anniversary of Independence from the United Kingdom this Thursday. The country then known as Ceylon obtained full freedom from the British on February 4th 1948.Independent Ceylon/Sri Lanka / has faced many challenges and problems in the past 68 years. We have had military coup attempts, communal …

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Sumanthiran’s Prominent Role in Tamil Politics and The Plot to Assassinate Him

By Manekshaw Plans to assassinate Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian Mathiaparanam Abraham Sumanthiran, who is a confidant of TNA Leader and Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan, have been unearthed by the Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) with the arrest of five suspects. The preliminary investigation carried out by the TID has brought to light that …

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Pro-LTTE Elements in TNA Forced to Accept Reality in the Case of Tiger Attempt to Assassinate Sumanthiran MP

By M.S. M. Ayub The news on the assassination attempt on Parliamentarian and Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Spokesman M.A. Sumanthiran that was broken by the Daily Mirror on January 21 has put many political parties in a difficult position. According to the news item and the feature article by veteran journalist D.B.S. Jeyaraj, who is …

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Norway Ready to Assist According to International Procedures With Lankan Investigation into Sumanthiran Assassination Attempt

by Shamindra Ferdinando The Norwegian embassy has indicated Norwegian readiness to assist an ongoing investigation into the alleged involvement of Norway based Tamil diaspora elements in an attempt to assassinate Jaffna District Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran. Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka on behalf of the Government constituent, JHU recently alleged that Norway based …

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Neelan, Sumanthiran and the Perils of “Traitorization” For the Tamil People

By Dharisha Bastians “Amirthalingam was called a traitor and killed. Neelan Thiruchelvam was called a traitor and killed. Over 30 years we have lost all these people. And after killing them, what have we achieved? So now you call Sumanthiran a traitor and kill me also. Tell me, what are we going to do after …

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Five Ex-LTTE Cadres Arrested In Connection With Plot to Assassinate TNA Parliamentarian Sumanthiran Are Remanded Till Feb 13th.

By Col. R.Hariharan Sri Lanka police’s Terrorism Investigation Department (TID) arrested in all five rehabilitated LTTE cadres for allegedly plotting to assassinate MA Sumanthiran, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Member of Parliament, known for his moderate views. The TID is reported to have recovered two Claymore mines and large quantities of cannabis from the homes of …

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Indian Entrepreneurs Want Road Across Palk Straits Linking Rameswaram to Thalaimannar.

By PK Balachandran An entrepreneur from Tamil Nadu exhibiting his machine at the Jaffna International Trade Fair 2017. JAFFNA: Representatives of Indian companies who exhibited their products at the Jaffna International Trade Fair from January 27 to 29, were unanimously of the view that for the development and trade and investment between India and the …

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“Wigneswaran Has Joined Hands With the LTTE,Its Supporters and NGO’s To Destroy The Country’s Harmony” – Dayasiri Jayasekara

By Chaturanga Pradeep Northern Province Chief Minister C. V. Wigneswaran had become nothing but a ghost, who instigated disharmony between the Tamil and Sinhala communities in the country, Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara said today. Addressing the weekly Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) media briefing, the Sports Minister requested Tamil people in the North to come forward …

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Prof GL Peiris Asks Why the 5 Ex-LTTE suspects in Sumanthiran Assassination Case Are Not Charged Under PTA?

By Shamindra Ferdinando Alleging that five former LTTE cadres arrested in connection with an alleged attempt to assassinate TNA lawmaker M.A. Sumanthiran had been produced before the Kilinochchi Magistrate and District judge and remanded till Feb 13 on a charge of possessing explosives and narcotics instead of under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), former …

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