Sumanthiran MP Withdraws Supreme Court Petition Challenging Pre-fab House Construction in North; Will File Fresh Petition Making Cabinet Respondents.

By Namini Wijedasa Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian M. A. Sumanthiran this week withdrew his Supreme Court petition challenging the proposed construction of prefabricated houses for the war-displaced in the North and East but will file a fresh application next week after making the Cabinet of Ministers respondents. The other respondents are Resettlement Minister D …

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Regional Development Minister Sarath Fonseka Ready to Testify Against Jagath Jayasuriya if Ex-Army Chief is Tried for Alleged war Crimes.

By Upali de Saram and Norman Palihawadane Regional Development Minister Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka yesterday said he was ready to give evidence against his successor in the army, General Jagath Jayasuriya if the latter was tried for war crimes. Field Marshal Fonseka said he had received information that General Jayasuriya had committed various offences as …

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Field Marshall Sarath Fonseka Ready to Give Evidence About War Crimes Allegedly Committed By Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya

By Ajith Siriwardana Minister and Field Marshal, Sarath Fonseka said today he had information on the crimes committed by former army commander Jagath Jayasuriya, the then Vanni commander and that he was ready to give evidence if proper legal action was instituted against him. “I received complaints that Mr. Jayasuriya was engaged in crimes as …

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Ex-Army Chief Jagath Jayasuriya Committed War Crimes Against Arrested Suspects in Detention Alleges Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka.

Field Marshall Sarath Fonseka dropped a bombshell by accusing his successor general Jagath Jayasuriya of committing war crimes as accused by a South Africa-based human rights group. Fonseka told reporters summoned to his office at Rajagiriya today that he was aware of “crimes committed on suspects” by Jayasuriya when he was placed in charge of …

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Application of Universal Jurisdiction Will Lead to Danger of a Witch Hunt Against Sri Lankan Security Personnel

By P.K.Balachandran The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid, had recommended the application of the principle of Universal Legal Jurisdiction in the case of credible violations of international humanitarian and human rights law by the Sri Lankan security forces during the 2006-2009 Eelam War IV against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). …

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Ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Opposition Leader Rajavarothayam Sampanthan Meet One on One for Political Discussions.

By D.B.S.Jeyaraj Former Sri Lankan President and Kurunegala District MP Mahinda Rajapaksa and Leader of the Opposition and Trincomalee district MP Rajavarothayam Sampanthan have engaged in significant political discussions at a one on one meeting without aides this week. The 45 minute meeting took place at Mahinda Rajapaksa’s residence in Wijerama Mawatte Colombo on August …

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“Mehema Epa Chandrika, Mehema Epa” – Mahinda Rajapaksa’s “advice” to Chandrika Kumaratunga.

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa today said ‘hatred and jealousy’ are two qualities his predecessor Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga shouldn’t possess. Responding to a journalist following an event held at the BMICH, Mr. Rajapaksa said hatred was visible through former President Kumaratunga as she was aging. He said if there was an issue with his education, which …

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An International Arrest Warrant May be Issued on Ex-Army Chief Jagath Jayasuriya if a Universal Jurisdiction Prosecution is Launched Against Him.

By Kate Cronin-Furman Early Tuesday morning, news broke that Sri Lanka’s ambassador to Brazil had fled the country. Sri Lanka’s government later announced that his departure was planned, and it was simply the end of his ambassadorial term, but the timing raised eyebrows. The previous day, human rights groups had filed a criminal complaint accusing …

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“Cowboy” Champika Ranawaka to Lasso and Corral Stray Cattle Found Roaming on Highways and Roads

Sri Lanka today announced a crack down on cattle roaming the streets of Colombo and its suburbs in a bid to reduce traffic jams and accidents in the congested capital. Urban Development minister Patali Champika Ranawaka told reporters that owners had been warned to clear cows and bulls from public thoroughfares or the animals will …

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“No Military Alliances With Or Making Our Bases Available to Foreign Countries” -Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe

Sri Lanka will convene an international conference to discuss improvements in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to ensure freedom of navigation which is vital for orderly economic growth and security of commerce in the Indian Ocean Region, the Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesighe said here on Thursday. Addressing the …

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“I Will be President Till My Term Ends in 2020″Declares President Maithripala Sirisena

By Uditha Jayasinghe Quashing speculation over the fate of the Coalition Government, President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday backed it to continue till 2020, pointing out that the parliamentary composition demanded it and insisted he would continue his term to the end. During a meeting with the media to discuss the upcoming 66th anniversary celebrations of the …

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Gen.Jagath Jayasuriya Has Completed Term as Ambassador to Brazil and Did Not Leave Due to War Crime Law Suits Says Govt

Sri Lanka Wednesday denied its former army chief and ambassador to Brazil, Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya, had fled after war crimes charges were brought against him in two Latin American states. The foreign ministry said the retired general completed his two-year term at about the same time an international human rights group filed action against him …

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Govt to set Up Fish farm in Part of Vidathaltheevu Nature Reserve Known For Water Bird Conservation in Mannar District

The Sri Lankan government has decided to reduce the extent of a natural reserve in the island’s north-west to accommodate a fish farm, a spokesman said. The borders of Vidathalathivu Natural Reserve, covering about 29,180 hectares and declared a nature reserve in March 2016, are to be changed, spokesman Minister of Land and Parliamentary Reforms …

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Sirisena-Wickremesinghe Govt Struggling to Pacify Indian Anger Over Hambantota Harbour Deal with China

By Vijith Samarasinghe The Sri Lankan government is anxiously trying to appease concerns in Washington and New Delhi that it is accommodating to the interests of Beijing by handing control over a strategic port to a Chinese company. Sri Lanka last month signed a $US1.12 billion agreement to give the majority stake of the Chinese-built …

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Similarity Between the 2004 LTTE’s Karuna Rebellion and the 2017 UNP Revolt of Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka Today’s UNP is a party that hounds Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, but will staunchly defend Rajitha Senaratne. Today’s UNP, a party that prides itself on being the party of professionals and the educated, is a party that replaces as Minister of Justice, a President’s Counsel and a former examiner in the Faculty of Law …

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Lasith Malinga Who Compared Sports Minister Jayasekara to a “Monkey” Will Captain Depleted Team in Next Match Against India.

Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga who is facing a suspended ban for comparing the country’s sports minister to a monkey has been asked to lead a crippled team against India at the next one-day international. Malinga, who was two months ago slapped a fine of 50 percent of his match fee and given a …

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Lanka’s Ex- Army Chief and Current Ambassador in Latin America “Missing” in Brazil as Human Rights Organizations File War Crimes Law Suits Against Him

Human rights groups in South America are alleging war crimes violations in lawsuits filed against a former Sri Lankan general who is now his Asian nation’s ambassador to Brazil and five other countries in Latin America, according the “Miami Herald”. MH yesterday reported that the suits against Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya were based on his role …

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Arjuna Ranatunga Prepared to Accept Sports Ministry Portfolio in the Interests of Sri Lanka Cricket.

A somewhat heated exchange between Minister of Petroleum Resources Development and Former Test Cricket captain Arjuna Ranatunga and Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekara during a ministerial meeting yesterday was brought to a halt by President Maithripala Sirisena, but sources say Captain Cool had the edge in the duel. The war of words ocurred while Minister …

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Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) President Thilanga Sumathipala Refuses to Resign as Demanded by Ex-Captain Arjuna Ranatunga

The President of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) Thilanga Sumathipala has refused to heed the call for his resignation from legendary cricket captain Arjuna Ranatunga. “There is no need to resign, the administration is not at fault for the team’s poor showing,” Sumathipala said today. Ranatunga, the current Minister of Petroleum Resources Development, said he had …

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Sri Lanka Cricket Board of Selectors Resign “En Masse” Following Dismal Presence of National Team.

The crumbling performance of Sri Lanka Cricket one of the most prominent brands of the country got a fresh jolt yesterday (Aug 29th) with all the selectors resigning in an unprecedented development welcomed by most enthusiasts of the game. Sources said it was the first time that selectors have resigned en masse whilst a tour …

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Arjuna Ranatunga and Dayasiri Jayasekara Clash in Cabinet as Capt Cool” Wants to Take Over Sports Ministry

The crisis in the country’s cricket was also felt at yesterday’s Cabinet meeting (Aug 29th) with an argument breaking out between Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara and former World Cup-winning ‘Captain Cool’ Petroleum Resources Development Minister Arjuna Ranatunga. The latter however has been a vocal critic of the Sri Lanka Cricket Board led by Deputy Speaker …

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We are Back to the days of JR Jayawardene and his Manoeuvres to Stay in Power at any Cost.

By Rajiva Wijesinha Developments in the two weeks I was away suggest that the government is, a year before I expected it, hurtling towards its end. Or rather I should say towards its end as we know it, since the manner in which the Elections Bill was changed at whim suggests that we are back …

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Showing Disrespect to Our Cricket Team and the Country They Represent is Unacceptable and Must be Condemned.

By Indrajit Coomaraswamy (The writer Who is currently the Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka was Captain, Sri Lanka Rugby XV (1973-77) and Represented Tamil Union in First Division Cricket 1972-77 and 82-83) Sports lovers, particularly cricket fans, must be highly concerned about the unruly crowd behaviour at recent ODIs. Last week, there …

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President Sirisena Assures UNP Backbencher MP’s that he would Take Action Against Errant SLFP Ministers in Govt After Sep 2nd.

President Maithripala Sirisena has told the UNP back-benchers that he will clean the ‘SLFP stables’ after the party’s anniversary event on September 02. During a special meeting held between the UNP back-bench MPs and President Sirisena, the MPs had repeatedly pointed out the instances where the SLFP MPs representing the government had acted in an …

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Attorney-General Given Seven Reports By President Sirisena For Legal Action Regarding Offences Committed During Rajapaksa Regime.

By Kamani Alwis The Attorney General(AG) will file indictments relating to seven reports concerning alleged acts of Fraud Corruption, Abuse of Power State Resources and Privileges running into millions of rupees committed during the Rajapaksa regime. The seven reports compiled by the Presidential Commission Investigating alleged acts of Fraud Corruption Abuse of Power State Resources …

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UNP Wont Allow No Confidence Motion Against Health Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne to be Tabled in Parliament.

By Cyril Wimalasurendre Higher Education and Highways Minister Lakshman Kiriella said in Kandy on Monday (28), that the UNP would not allow the no-confidence motion against the Health and Indigenous Medicine Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne to be tabled in Parliament. Minister Kiriella said that there were many legal deficiencies in the draft of the motion. …

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Sri Lanka is now one of the Lowest Ranked Teams Among ICC Full Members in all Three Formats- Tests(7)mODI(8 and T-20 (8)

By Ranga Jayasuriya Simmering fan dissatisfaction exploded in the Pallekele cricket grounds on Sunday night — certainly it was not a pleasant thing to see. The India-Sri Lanka third ODI was disrupted by bottle-tossing cricket fans for more than 30 minutes and riot police were called in, when India was just eight runs needed to …

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Dark Cloud of Sirisena-Wickremesinghe Govt Has Many Silver Linings

By P.K.Balachandran Despite the muddied political waters and an atmosphere of uncertainty, the two and a half year old Sri Lankan government has significant achievements to crow about. In contrast to the previous Mahinda Rajapaksa regime, the current dispensation in Sri Lanka headed by President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, is not blessed …

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Why is Sri Lanka Rushing to Protect Commercial Trade Between Gulf of Aden and Malacca Straits?

By Lasanda Kurukulasuriya The new Navy Commander, Vice Admiral Travis Sinniah’s commencement of duties merits special attention on account of some observations he made besides the pleasantries associated with assuming office. One of the statements at his first press conference was regarding the future role of the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) which he reportedly said …

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Mahinda Rajapaksa Will Closely Watch New Justice Minister Thalatha Atukorale To See How she Takes Legal Action Against Rajapaksa Family.

By Thilanka Kanakarathna Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that they would keep a closer watch, how the newly appointed Justice Minister Thalatha Atukorale worked on her new office. After attending a religious event at the Sri Venkateshwara Hindu Temple in Modara on Saturday evening, Mr. Rajapaksa told the media that former Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe …

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Between Dragons and Elephants: Sri Lanka’s Dangerous Quest for Cash from China and India

By Sanja De Silva Jayatilleka “As the stand-off between the Indian and Chinese militaries enters its third month at Doklam…The entire neighbourhood is watching” -Suhashini Haider, The Hindu, 11.8.2017 There is a situation brewing about 4 kilometers away from the “crest of the mountain range separating the waters flowing into the Sikkim Teesta and its …

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UNP and SLFP Prepare to Go Separate Ways While Remaining Together in Govt to Prevent Return of Rajapaksa

By The “Sunday Times” Political Editor The clock was ticking away towards midnight signalling the dawn of Tuesday (Aug 22nd ) when President Maithripala Sirisena chaired a meeting of his coalition partners and “friendly” political parties at his Paget Road residence in Colombo. Even if those present were not conscious of the grim reality around, …

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Ravi Karunanayake Operates From Room 105 at “Temple Trees” as Head of Special Rural Infrastructure Development Program (SRIDP).

By Fagani Weerakoon Former minister Ravi Karunanayake who was forced to step down from his ministerial portfolio owing to acts committed in his capacity as the Minister of Finance that amounts to conflict of interest, seems to be back in action with the blessings of PM Wickremesinghe. According to reliable sources, he is given an …

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Vijay Nagaraj Well Known Indian Human Rights Activist Based In Colombo Dies in Polonnaruwa Car Accident on His Way to Batticaloa

By Meera Srinivasan Vijay Nagaraj, a former director of Amnesty International in India and an activist-researcher based in Sri Lanka died in a car accident on Friday. He was 44. According to local police, Mr. Nagaraj was driving from Colombo to the eastern town of Batticaloa for a workshop, and met with the accident early …

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Resignation of Ravi Karunanayake and Removal of Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

By Don Manu Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends and country. In Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe’s case it wasn’t his life that he was prepared to lay down but the ministerial positions he held; and which he, with disdain, declared as but a trifle – one …

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Even if No Confidence Motion Against Health Minister is Defeated as Expected, Dr,Rajitha Senaratne Will not Come out Unscathed.

By The “Sunday Times” Political Editor The past weeks have seen the UNP’s standing countrywide taking a bad beating. It began with events relating to the resignation of Ravi Karunanayake as Foreign Minister. This week, Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe was removed from his portfolio. Now, a third, Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne will …

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Wearing Navy Uniform is not a License to Commit Crimes Says New Navy Commander Vice Admiral Travis Sinniah.

Sri Lanka Navy’s new commander Vice Admiral Travis Sinniah, who assumed duties on Tuesday, says the Navy uniform is not a license to kill, steal or commit any other crime and no one will be pardoned if someone within the Navy is found guilty of any crime even if the person is a war hero. …

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Can Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe’s Removal Heal The “Beggar’s Wound” Of High Level Corruption?

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene The agitated pleas of the ruling United National Party (UNP) parliamentarians that they became ‘fully aware’ of former Justice Minister Wijayadasa Rajapakshe allegedly stalling corruption cases against the Rajapaksa clan only now, must be taken with more than a pinch of that proverbial salt. Overstepping the line a long time ago …

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“Yahapalana”Govt Gazettes One Bill and Passes Completely Different Bill By Introducing Changes at Committee Stage in Parliament

by C.A.Chandraprema The drama that took place both within and outside Parliament last week in relation to the amendments brought to the local government elections law highlights more than anything else the profound political crisis faced by the government. In 2012, the local government elections law was changed by the Rajapaksa government in response to …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakakshe Dismissal is Calculated Move by Sirisena-Wickremesinghe Govt to Posture as Opponents of Corruption.

By K.Ratnayake President Maithripala Sirisena on Wednesday sacked Wijedasa Rajapakse as justice and Buddhist affairs minister, following demands from the United National Party (UNP), the main partner in the “unity government.” Wijedasa, a leading UNP member, was originally selected for the ministerial position by his party. Last week, a UNP working committee headed by Prime …

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Thalatha Athukorale and Gamini Jayawickrama Perera Sworn in as Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Respectively

The Minister of Foreign Employment, Thalatha Athukorala, and Minister of Sustainable Development and Wildlife, Gamini Jayawickrama, on Friday took oaths as Minister of Justice and Minister of Buddha Sasana respectively, in place of the sacked Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe . The Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and the Secretary to the President Austin Fernando were also present on …

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Parliament Passes Local Govt Elections Amendment Bill with 144 Votes for and None Against:44 MP’s Abstain from Voting.

by Saman Indrajith Local Government Elections (Amendment) bill was passed in Parliament yesterday with 120 voting for it none against and 44 abstaining. MPs of the Joint Opposition abstained from voting while the JVP and TNA MPs voted with the government. Sixty MPs were not present in the chamber at the time of vote. Before …

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Letters of Demand for Rs 500 Million Each sent by Ex-Navy Chief Wasantha Karannagoda and Retd Rear Admiral Udaya Keerthi Bandara to Navy Commander Travis Sinniah.

Former Navy Commander Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda has sent a Letter of Demand to Navy Commander Travis Sinniah demanding Rs.500 million over a statement made to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) by the latter, the letter of demand stated. The Letter of Demand sent by Attorney Wasantha Wijewardane on behalf of Admiral Karannagoda stated that,

Former Navy Chief Wasantha Karannagoda Initiates Legal Action Against Current Navy Commander Travis Sinniah for Alleged Defamation.

By Shamindra Ferdinando The ongoing high profile case involving a group of navy officers in the alleged abduction and disappearance of eleven persons in 2008 has taken a dramatic turn with wartime Navy Chief the then Vice Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda initiating legal proceedings against Navy Commander Vice Admiral Travis Sinniah in respect of a recent …

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New Navy Chief Travis Sinniah More Concerned About taking Navy Forward Rather Than Addressing Past Issues.

Sri Lanka’s new navy chief Travis Sinniah began work by pledging no forgiveness for his officers who may have committed crimes taking the cover of the island’s drawn out separatist war. The Vice Admiral told reporters at his first press conference at navy headquarters on Wednesday that “even the biggest war hero” could not escape …

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How the “Ceylon” Tamils From Sri Lanka Contributed to Singapore Over The Years

By Ajit Kanagasundram The world today is desperate to attract foreign talent. Thirty percent of Silicon Valley startups are by Indians, and the same percentage is true of Microsoft employees, NASA employees and US physicians. Canada and Australia have long had a point system to attract talent and the US and the UK are thinking …

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Setting up an Accessible Information Data Base About Citizens Without Adequate Safeguards to Protect Privacy Will Turn Sri Lanka Into a “Surveillance” State.

Sri Lanka has presented regulations in parliament to create a database of data about citizens which can be accessed by the defence secretary and other officials without a court order, which critics warn is taking the country speedily towards a surveillance state. On Wednesday regulations which will eventually make it possible for authorities to create …

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No Confidence Motion With 11 Charges Against Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne Signed By 39 Joint Opposition MP’s Submitted to Speaker’s Office.

By Saman Indrajith A no-confidence motion signed by 39 MPs of the Joint Opposition against Health Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne has been handed over to the Speaker’s Office yesterday. The motion sought to oust Minister Senaratne on 11 charges, JO MP Ranjith Zoysa told The Island. He said they would request Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to …

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Sri Lanka Cricket Officials Try to Do “Damage Control” After Defeat by Forcing Coach Nic Pothas to Make Statement at Press Conference.

By N Ananthanarayanan After slamming “too many cooks” for spoiling Sri Lankan cricket team in the wake of Indian cricket team’s crushing win in the first ODI on Sunday, interim head coach Nic Pothas was forced to issue statement saying all is fine with the process in place Sri Lankan cricket, in crisis with the …

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Galle District MP Geetha Kumarasinghe is the only Lankan Parliamentarian to Hold Dual Citizenship.

By Maheesha Mudugamuwa The Immigration and Emigration Department had confirmed that Galle District MP Geetha Kumarasinghe is the only MP holding dual citizenship, People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) said yesterday. The department, on a request made by PAFFREL under the Right to Information (RIT) Act, has revealed that MP Kumarasinghe was granted …

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“I Will Reveal the True Story Behind the Treasury Bond Issues of 2015 and 2016” States Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

By Zacky Jabbar Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe having accepted President Maithripala Sirisena’s decision to remove him from his portfolios, said yesterday that he would work to unravel the true story behind the Central Bank Treasury Bond issues of 2015 and 2016. ” I will reveal the details while continuing to be a …

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”I am the Only Justice Minister Accused of NOT Pressuring and Influencing the Judiciary and Attorney-Generals Dept” Points out Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

Ceding to expectations, President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday sacked embattled Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe for breaching the collective responsibility of Cabinet and criticising the Government’s deal with a State-run Chinese company to revive the debt-ridden Hambantota Port. Rajapakshe was criticised by his party for questioning the Cabinet decision to lease the port of Hambantota to China. …

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Defiant Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Says he was Sacked Due to Unconstitutional Hambantota Port Deal and Central Bank Bond Scam

By Lahiru Pothmulla Former Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe said today he didn’t resign from any portfolio but was removed in an attempt to sweep the bond scam under the carpet. He told the media outside the Justice Ministry that baseless charges had been made against him saying he had struck deals with …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Removed as Minister in a “Compromise” Enabling Him to Rejoin Cabinet Later With Different Portfolio.

After much hesitation and thought, Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena on Wednesday relieved controversial Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe of his portfolios. This was done at the request of the Working Committee of the United National Party (UNP) to which Rajapakshe belongs. However, according to well-placed political sources, Wijeyadasa’s sacking is not an …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Can Make a Comeback to Govt Like Tilak Marapana After Being “Rehabilitated” says Rajitha Senaratne

By Chathuri Dissanayake Cases filed against bigwigs of the previous regime may be refiled under fresh charges with the appointment of the new Justice Minister, Cabinet Co-spokesperson Rajitha Senaratne said yesterday. Pointing out shortcomings in some of the cases that have already been filed, Senaratne said that some of the cases may be refiled under …

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“Rosy Senanayake Will Succeed Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe as Colombo District MP After the UNP Sacks him from Party” says Mujibur Rahman MP

By Saman Indrajith UNP Colombo District MP Mujibur Rahuman told a group of journalists at the lobby of parliamentary committee room that UNP Colombo District MP Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe who was relieved of his cabinet portfolios will be sacked from the party as well and lose his MP post too. He said that vacancy caused by …

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Cabinet Collective Responsibilty: UNP Takes Action Against Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe But No Action Against Susil Premajayantha So far

By Zahrah Imtiaz President Maithripala Sirisena has sacked Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe from his Justice and Buddhasasana portfolios. This was done in agreement to a letter sent to him by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Tuesday, asking that Rajapakshe be relieved of his position, the Presidential Media Unit stated. Wijeyadasa over the past few months has been …

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‘No Bigger Shame Than Continuing In Cabinet Bent On Selling National Assets’: Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe On Removal

Former Justice and Buddhasasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, upon being relieved of his ministerial position today, said there was ‘no greater shame’ than continuing in a Cabinet bent on selling national assets. President Maithripala Sirisena this afternoon, yielding to pressure from the United National Party (UNP) to remove the Justice Minister, informed Rajapakshe of his removal …

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President Sirisena Has Sacked Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Announces Govt Spokesman Gayantha Karunathilaka.

Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena Wednesday sacked controversial Justice minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe for criticising a billion-dollar deal to lease the loss-making deep sea port to China. Government spokesman Gayantha Karunathilaka said the Justice minister had violated collective cabinet responsibility and their United Nation Party (UNP) recommended his sacking to the President on Tuesday. Rajapaskhe had …

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Prime Minister “Advises”President to Expel Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe from Govt But Some in SLFP Want To Retain Him in Cabinet as their Party Minister.

The Sri Lankan Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, met President Maithripala Sirisena late on Monday, and advised him to expel Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe from the cabinet for indulging in anti-government and anti-party activities. Earlier, the Working Committee of Wickremesinghe’ party ,the United National Party (UNP), decided to sack Rajapakshe after the deadline set by it …

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Will Sri Lanka’s “Diplomacy” at UNHRC Take a Hopeful Fresh Turn Under the new Foreign Minister?

By Sanja de Silva Jayatilleka The new Foreign Minister has assured us, according to the Daily News, that Resolution 30/1 which was co-sponsored by the Unity Government of Sri Lanka “was in no way harmful to the country…” The Island of 19th August 2017 reports that the new Minister had said that he had “examined” …

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President Sirisena Must Use His Powers Without Squeamishness and Get Rid of Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe.

By Rathindra Kuruwita ‘In some countries, the Executive is chosen directly by the people and is not dependent on the legislature during the period of its existence, for a specified number of years. Such an Executive is a strong Executive, seated in power for a fixed number of years, not subject to the whims and …

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Pooja at Kathirgamam/Kataragama stopped as Basnayake Nilame and Kapuralas Over Custody of Key to Holy Shrine

By K. D. Devapriya The ‘pooja’ at the historical Ruhuna Kataragama Devalaya was not held on Monday morning as the key to the devalaya had been taken away by Basnayaka Nilame D. P. Kumarage from a kapurala who was to perform the ritual. Well informed sources said the incident had occurred due to a dispute …

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UNP Working Committee Requests President to Remove Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe From Cabinet But No Response from Sirisena so far.

by Zacki Jabbar The UNP Working Committee yesterday requested President Maithripala Sirisena to remove Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe from his ministerial positions as he had failed to show cause for violating collective Cabinet responsibility by publicly criticising the Hambantota Port Agreement with China after having endorsed it at a recent Cabinet meeting. …

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President and Prime Minister Hold Urgent Late Night Meeting to Discuss Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe’s Defiant Stand of Neither Apologizing Nor Resigning.

by Zacki Jabbar Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and President Maithripala Sirisena had an emergency meeting last night following a government parlimentary group meeting at Temple Trees. Government sources said some MPs had taken up the issue of Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe vilolating collective Cabinet responsibility by publicly criticising the Hambantota Port agreement …

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New Inland Revenue Laws Favour Multi-nationals and Foreigners Charges Ex-president Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday, condemning the proposed new Inland Revenue Law, said that no SLFPer could vote for such a bill which would tax provident fund contributions, increase tax burden on the struggling public and impose taxes on places of worship. Rajapaksa said, in a media statement, yesterday: “This new law is weighted against …

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Govt Gazettes Establishment of a Missing Persons Office While Protecting Police and Military Personnel Responsible for Disappearances Crimes.

By Vijith Samarasinghe Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena last month signed a gazette to establish an Office on Missing Persons (OMP) so as to pretend to be delivering justice for the tens of thousands of people who disappeared during the country’s three-decade communal war and civil emergencies. In reality, this is a desperate attempt by …

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National Economic Council Could Hopefully Restore Balance of Political Power Between UNP and SLFP In Govt

By Ranga Jayasuriya President Maithripala Sirisena has decided to set up a National Economic Council (NEC) which will become the apex body tasked to formulate and implement the government’s economic and development policy. The new venture is in part an attempt by the President to claw back some control of the economic policy, which was …

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Security Called in as Over 50 Disappointed Fans shout and Hoot at Lankan Cricket Team After 9 wicket Defeat in Dambulla.

Disappointed fans in Dambulla held up the Sri Lankan cricket team’s bus on Sunday evening after hosts suffered a humiliating nine wicket defeat in the five-match ODI series. Fans have been losing their patience with the national team, especially after the team lost the Test series 3-0 and showed little signs of improvement in the …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe’s Controversial Ruling on Lesbianism When he Was Head of the Sri Lanka Press Council

By The “Economy Next” Political Correspondent Sri Lanka’s Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe is no stranger to controversy. His May 2000 ruling as the head of the quasi legal Press Council should have been reason enough to keep him out of the current cabinet, but the Prime Minister appears to have thought otherwise. It is unclear …

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UNP-SLFP Coalition Govt in Total Confusion and Disarray After Two Years

By P K Balachandran It’s been two years since two of Sri Lanka’s largest political groupings – the United National Party (UNP) and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) – signed a MoU to cohabit in the government for two years to give “Good Governance” in place of the nine-year corruption and violence-ridden rule of …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Says he Wont Resign as Cabinet Minister and Wants President Sirisena to Take Decision

By L.B.Senarathna and J.A.L.Jayasinghe Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe said the he did not have any intention of resigning from the Ministerial post just because some people made allegations against him on various issues. Speaking to journalists after meeting the Mahanayake of the Asgiriya Chapter the Most Ven. Warakagoda Sri Gnanarathana Thera and …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Wants Buddhist Monks to Lead Campaign for Political Change as Sirisena led Govt Has Failed the Nation.

by Amal Jayasinghe Embattled Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe criticised President Maithripala Sirisena’s coalition government yesterday saying it had failed the nation and urged Buddhists monks to lead a campaign for political change. Rajapakshe, who faces possible expulsion from the cabinet, took Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne head on accusing him of interfering in the affairs of …

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Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Wont Apologize or Resign But Will Fight Back in Defiant Mood.

By the “Sunday Times”Political Editor The snowballing effect of President Sirisena’s remarks at a Cabinet meeting last month that the UNP leadership stalled high profile cases involving the former President, members of his family and associates continues to reverberate. There appears to have been considerable soul searching by the party hierarchy over those responsible and …

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Tilak Marapana Needs to Be Briefed on Jurisprudence Regarding “Torture”Prohibited by Article 11 of Constitution.

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene That Sri Lanka’s new Minister of Foreign Affairs has chosen to flippantly wave aside the stupefying conduct of the Inspector General of Police (IGP) in grabbing an employee by the collar, threateningly raising a hand and berating him, is unfortunate to say the least. Not reflective of the law The IGP’s …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Has the Unstinted Support of the SLFP,Joint Opposition and Buddhist Establishment.

By C.A.Chandraprema It was evident from the time the present government came into power that the UNP as a collective entity was not in its proper senses. In 2001, when much the same individuals in the UNP came into power, they were a stabilising force which doused the flames that had been ignited by Chandrika …

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“Abusing a Person Cant be Equated with Torture” Says new Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana In Defence of IGP Jayasundara.

Sri Lanka’s new Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana assumed office Friday defending embattled police chief Pujith Jayasundara who was enraged after an employee failed to participate in a mandatory meditation session. Marapana dismissed the leaked video which showed police chief shaking a lift operator by the collar and making threatening gestures because he had not meditated …

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Pressure Mounts Within UNP To Expel Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Who is Accused of Being Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Mole in the Cabinet

Forcing Foreign minister Ravi Karunanayake to step down avoided a showdown between the President and the Prime Minister, but the duo faces more challenges as their listless coalition looks for direction. President Maithripala Sirisena had his way when Karunanayake was forced out after he was linked to controversial bond trader Arjun Aloysius, but the troubles …

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New Navy Commander Rear Admiral Travis Sinniah Becomes 2nd Tamil Navy Chief After Rajan Kadirgamar Retired in 1970.

After a gap of 47 years, Sri Lanka on Friday appointed a Tamil as the Commander of its navy. Rear Admiral Travis Jeremy Liyanduru Sinniah, who was made navy chief by President Maithripala Sirisena, is the second Tamil to head the country’s navy after Rear Admiral Rajanathan “Rajan” Kadirgamar who served between 1960 and 70. …

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Is Being Targeted By UNP to Undermine the A-G Dept and Cripple the Treasury Bond Inquiry

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka The Working Committee and the Parliamentary Group of the UNP disgracefully passed a unanimous vote of no-confidence against Minister of Justice and Buddha Sasana, Wijayadasa Rajapakshe, which said more about those two UNP entities than about Wijeyadasa—and none of it good. The real reason, or should I say, the main reason out …

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“Yamapalana”Propaganda Offensive Against Me, My Family and Opposition” Alleges Ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa has denied government claims that a range of properties belonging to the Rajapaksa family estimated to be worth Rs. 5 bn had been seized. The former President said that there was absolutely no basis for this claim. The Office of the former President has issued the following statement yesterday: “Three members …

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UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to Appoint Party Committee to Determine Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe’s Future in the Cabinet.

By Akitha Perera The UNP yesterday resolved to appoint a committee to decide whether Buddha Sasana and Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe should be allowed to remain in the Cabinet or not. The decision had been taken at a combined meeting of the UNP Working Committee (WC) and parliamentary group at Sirikotha with its leader Prime …

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UNP Parliamentary Group Calls for Resignation of Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe.

Following severe criticism levelled against Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe at yesterday’s UNP Central Committee and Parliamentary Group meeting, the party will attempt to resolve the ensuing standoff on Monday. Minister Rajapakshe is expected to meet Prime Minister and UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe in the coming days and make a final decision by Monday, sources within …

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UNP Working Committee Passes 5 Point Resolution of No Confidence in Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe.

The United National Party (UNP) Working Committee and Parliamentary group yesterday unanimously adopted a no-confidence Resolution against Justice and Buddhasasana Minister Wijeydasa Rajapakshe. The five-point resolution submitted by parliamentarian Ashu Marasinghe contained the following allegations against Justice and Buddhasasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe:

Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe to Make Special Statement in Parliament on Aug 21st to “Explain” His Earlier Statements.

By Yohan Perera Minister of Justice Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, who was at the centre of controversy after being accused of violating the collective responsibility of the Cabinet by some of his colleagues, is to make a special statement on Monday, UNP General Secretary Kabir Hashim told journalists today. Minister Hashim told journalists that Mr. Rajapakshe assured …

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Caste Based Apartheid Segregates Crematoriums For “Upper” and “Lower” Castes in Jaffna

By M. Sooriasegaram Caste system is still practiced in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka. Contrary to popular view propagated by the ruling caste that caste is a thing of the past, it is a living cancer within the Tamil community. The upper caste community is the ruling caste in this province. All other castes …

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Enraged IGP Pujitha Jayasundara Collars and Threatens Lift Operator for not Attending Meditation Session at Police Dept.

Sri Lanka’s police chief has triggered calls for his resignation after footage emerged showing him assaulting an employee who refused to participate in mandatory morning meditation sessions. The leaked CCTV video showed Inspector-General Pujith Jayasundara grabbing a lift operator by the collar and making threatening gestures after he did not join the regulation “mindfulness meditation” …

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Forced Resignation of Ravi Karunanayake was a Desperate Attempt By Maithri-Ranil Regime To Cling On to Power.

By W.A. Sunil The forced resignation of Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake last week is a clear sign of the intensifying political crisis facing the government of President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. The immediate reason for Karunanayake’s resignation was to avoid a no-confidence motion presented to the parliamentary speaker by the self-named joint …

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Govt To Establish More High Courts To Expedite Hearing of Corruption Cases Against Rajapaksa Regime Through Trials at Bar

by Zacki Jabbar The government has decided to increase the number of High Courts with some of them functioning as trials-at-bar since more than 43 criminal cases against some members of former President Mahinda Rajapaksas family and his regime were stuck at the Attorney General’s Department for nearly two years. Addressing the weekly Cabinet Press …

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Yoshitha Rajapaksa Faces CID Inquiry “Siriliya Saviya”Jeep Used In Ruggerite Wasim Thajudeen’s Murder.

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s second son Yoshitha Rajapaksa appeared before the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) of the Police this morning. He will be asked to make a statement relating to a jeep belonging to the ‘Siriliya Saviya’ Foundation suspected to have been used in the abduction and murder of Wasim Thajudeen.

Rohitha Rajapaksa Questioned By FCID About Singapore Investor Funding China Built Supreme SAT Satellite Project.

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s youngest son, Rohitha Rajapaksa yesterday said a satellite stationed in the sky cannot be viewed with a magnifying glass – as suggested by some government ministers. He made these remarks while speaking to media after giving a statement to the Police Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID). Rajapaksa was questioned today by …

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Is Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe Trying to be the New Leader of Lanka’s Sinhala Buddhist Nationalists?

By P.K.Balachandran Sri Lanka’s Minister for Justice and Buddha Sasana, Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, appears to be making a bid to capture the island’s core political constituency – the Sinhala Buddhist-Nationalist constituency – in the absence of credible senior claimants.. The constituency was well served by Mahinda Rajapaksa until he messed up his political career by a …

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Shiranthi Escorted by Mahinda Questioned by CID Over Rugby Star Thajudeen’s Murder Amidst Protests Alleging Political witchhunt.

Sri Lanka’s former first lady, Shiranthi Rajapakse was questioned by the Criminal Investigations Department on Tuesday over the murder of a former national rugby player. Shiranthi, was escorted into the CID by her husband and former President Mahinda Rajapakse after she was summoned to provide a statement.

Maithri-Ranil Govt is Fissuring as well as Going Gaga in a Politically Suicidal Way.

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka The weekly evidence of the unprecedentedly dependent, servile character of the Yahapalana administration came in the form of a report in the prestigious Hindu by its smart, Colombo based correspondent Meera Srinivasan. Captioned ‘India keen to run Sri Lanka airport’, it says: “India has expressed interest to operate Sri Lanka’s second international …

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President Sirisena Calls For and Obtains Resignation of Sri Lanka’s Information Technology Chief Muhunthan Canagey.

Sri Lanka’s information technology chief, Muhunthan Canagey said he was forced to resign Monday following a public criticism of spectrum award said to have been made to a business group which operates a radio and TV network. Canagey alleged that the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka which is directly under President Maithripala Sirisena had …

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Majority of Cabinet Ministers Want Legal Action to be Taken Without Delay Against Rajapaksa Family and Ex-Ministers in JO.

By Sirimantha Ratnasekera and Priyadarshana Liyanage The Cabinet of ministers, at its meeting chaired by President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday, had taken up what some members described as inordinate delay in taking action against the Rajapaksa family and ministers of the previous government. Political sources said that several ministers had strongly criticised the delay and veteran …

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Only Relevant Witnesses Are Being Summoned Emphasises Presidential Commission of Inquiry in Statement.

By Sham Nuwan Ganewatta The Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) probing Central Bank-Perpetual Treasuries bond scams yesterday stressed that it wouldn’t be influenced by statements made by various persons regarding evidence given before it and also suggestions in respect of those whom they believed should be summoned. The PCoI comprises Supreme Court Judges K. T. …

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Development assignments Minister Tilak Marapana Sworn in as Foreign Affairs Minister .

Tilak Janaka Marapana, Minister of Development Assignments, was sworn-in as Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister on Tuesday in place of Ravi Karunanayake who had resigned last week. Karunanayake had resigned on account of his controversial financial dealings with stock broker Arjun Aloysisus, a principal figure in the 2015 Central Bank bonds scam. Marapana is a loyalist …

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Sirisena-Wickremesinghe Govt Afflicted by Chronic Disunity,Policy Contradictions and Inability to Fulfill Election Promises.

By P.K.Balachandran Two years into its five year term, Sri Lanka’s coalition government led by President Maithipala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe is afflicted by chronic disunity; contradictions in domestic and foreign policies; and a marked inability to fulfill election promises. Given its multifarious dilemmas and the inaction these have led to, it is …

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Marapana Reluctant To be Foreign Minister With the Condition that Karunanayake’s Personal Staff Should be Retained at Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Minister Tilak Marapama, who is chosen to be the new Foreign Minister, is reluctant to take oaths in the position as his predecessor Ravi Karunanayake’s personal staff is still at the ministry, informed government sources said. Aside from the personal staff, Karunanayake, who stepped down from the position last week, is still using ministry vehicle …

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UNP Gen Secy Kabir Hashim Wants President Sirisena to Decide Upon Course of Action Against Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

By Chathuri Dissanayake UNP yesterday called on President Maithripala Sirisena to take action on Minister Wijedasa Rajapakshe who has compromised “collective responsibility” of the Cabinet. Justice Minister Wijedasa Rajapakshe has been under fire for a number of controversial statements he made on Government’s move to lease Hambantota Port, leading to a number of UNP Ministers …

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“The Sunday Leader” Newspaper Taken Over By Ravi Karunanayake Faces Financial Crisis After Arjun Aloysius Stops Assistance.

Sri Lanka’s once popular Sunday Leader newspaper which gained popularity under slain Editor Lasantha Wickremetunga is now facing a severe financial crisis, with staff forced to go without salaries for months. Sources attached to the newspaper alleged that the paper was facing a financial crisis as a result of mismanagement by officials appointed by former …

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President Sirisena To Intensify “Legal Crackdown” on Ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Members of his Family.

(Excerpts from the “Sunday Times” Political Column of August 13th 2017) “President Sirisena, who declared he would heed their request made a disclosure that became the talking point among those present at the CC meeting. He noted ‘Joint Opposition’ members were jubilant over the events related to Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake’s resignation. He warned that …

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Sri Lanka Born Krish Vignarajah Enters US Maryland State Governor Race saying ” The Best Man For the Job is a Woman”.

Sri Lankan born Krish Vignarajah, a former Obama official, is entering the race for governor of Maryland. An official campaign kick-off and announcement is scheduled for September 19. About her decision, Ms. Vignarajah said: “I am running for Governor because I am worried my daughter will not have the same opportunities that my mom gave …

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Will China Built Mattala Airport Management be Made a Joint Venture With India To Maintain “Balance”In Geo-political Relations?

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan The Chinese started vying for Mattala Airport on seeing, both, then and the incumbent governments lament over the non-operation of the International Mattala Airport in the South. The Chinese built it and said it’s not their problem if Sri Lankans don’t make use of it. However, the trend has changed with …

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Full Text of Statement Made By Ravi Karunanayake M.P. In Parliament When Resigning as Minister of Foreign Affairs on August 10th 2017.

(Full Text of Statement Made on August 10th 2017 By Ravi Karunanayake M.P. In Parliament When Resigning as Minister of Foreign Affairs ‘The mainstream media in the country, websites and other social media made bold headlines about me in the last few days. Certain members of parliament too expressed different views. A no confidence motion …

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Public Being Told To Rejoice Over a Minister Resigning Is Devilish Satire

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene For those who laboured long and hard to bring fresh cleansing winds to Sri Lanka’s degenerate political culture in 2015, these are times of mortified reflection. The collective angst of the United National Party (UNP) amidst a dismaying disarray and loss of public confidence beggars the imagination. Its parliamentarians are filing …

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India’s Worries Over China Extend Far Beyond Sri Lanka and Hambantota Port.

By Lasanda Kurukulasuriya The government’s manner of communicating details of the Hambantota port deal to the public has been less than forthright, and lacking in transparency, considering public apprehensions over the fallout of the project. In an attempt to get around the opposition to a big time give-away of control over a national asset – …

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Ranil Vetoes Move by UNP Group of MP’s Associated with Ravi Karunanayake to Bring No Faith Motion Against Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

(Excerpts From the “Sunday Times”Political Column of August 13th 2017) ” Adding to the unease of the UNP was another development. Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe in different public comments and in newspaper interviews, strongly criticised the Concession Agreement between the Government and the Chinese company for the Hambantota Port project. Rajapakshe, known for wallowing in …

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