1) Apr 27, 2016 19:15:20 GMT | + Colombo detains ITAK youth leader cum editor after criticism on PTA arrests
The notorious 'Terrorist' Investigation Division (TID), operated by the 'Defence Ministry' of genocidal Sri Lanka has arrested V.S. Sivakaran, the Youth Wing secretary of Ilangkai Thamizh Arasuk Kadchi (ITAK) and the editor of Tamil weekly ‘Puthiyavan’ on Wednesday afternoon at the paper office located on Mannaar Main street. Sivakaran's arrest is an attempt to suppress criticism being levelled against the abduction-styled arrests taking place in the Tamil homeland, journalists in North said. The arrest comes 2 days after Sivakaran went on record strongly condemning the PTA based arrests that have taken place in the North and East.
2) Apr 27, 2016 19:09:38 GMT | + UN Special Rapporteurs to visit to Sri Lanka
3) Apr 27, 2016 19:06:20 GMT | + Battle scars: Sri Lanka's north counts the cost of a 26-year war
UN Special Rapporteurs to visit to Sri Lanka The UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, Mónica Pinto, and the UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, Juan E. Méndez, will undertake a joint visit to Sri Lanka from April 29 to May 7,2016, at the invitation of the government.During their visit, the two Special Rapporteurs will meet with relevant ministers, government officials, members of the judiciary, the Attorney General, lawyers, civil society members, the National Human Rights Commission, and victims and their families. In addition to visiting Colombo, they will visit the Northern, North Central, Eastern, Central and Southern Provinces, and also places of detention. more ...
4) Apr 27, 2016 18:52:33 GMT | + Human rights groups ask Trudeau to end ‘immoral’ arms deal with Saudi Arabia
An equitable power sharing structure is crucial to resolving the nation's entrenched racial divisions, particularly as greater regional autonomy was a key request Tamil rebels made during wartime negotiations with Colombo, says Professor Subrata Mitra, director of the Institute of South Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore. But there's no consensus on how this can be achieved, he adds. Sirisena offered to establish a truth and reconciliation commission last year but the U.N. said the country was "not yet ready or equipped" to conduct a "credible investigation" that would address the gravity of the suspected violations. more ...
5) Apr 27, 2016 18:51:41 GMT | + Tamil & Chinese-speaking pupils ahead of British children in reading and writing English
A huge coalition of human-rights, development and arms-control groups are urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to rescind the “immoral and unethical” decision to approve export permits for the bulk of a $15-billion sale of combat vehicles to Saudi Arabia. The coalition wrote an open letter to Mr. Trudeau on Wednesday, saying there is a reasonable risk that the ruling House of Saud will use the vehicles against their own citizens and in the Saudi military mission in neighbouring Yemen. more ...
6) Apr 27, 2015 13:16:57 GMT | + Sri Lanka's former leader Rajapaksa remains defiant
Children whose mother tongue is Tamil are also doing better than those whose first language is English. Figures from the Department for Education reveal children recorded as speaking the Asian languages outperform English-speaking children in all year six tests. A higher proportion of Chinese or Tamil speakers get grade five or above in end of primary school SATs. In reading tests for children aged 10 and 11 around 50 per cent of children who have English as their first language get a grade five or above. more ...
7) Apr 27, 2015 12:57:54 GMT | + Sri Lanka president moves Constitution amendment bill
Sri Lanka's parliament is due to debate a bill limiting presidential powers. This is seen as an attempt to roll back the legacy of former leader Mahinda Rajapaksa, who vastly expanded his powers while in office. Rajapaksa was unexpectedly defeated in elections in January. Some analysts say complacency cost him the presidency. He considers his defeat a conspiracy. Al Jazeera's Minelle Fernandez met Rajapaksa in southern Sri Lanka for his first television interview since losing the presidency. more ...
8) Apr 27, 2015 12:55:23 GMT | + Sri Lanka journalists in exile in Nepal to return
Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today presented a bill in parliament for a key amendment to the Constitution that seeks to dilute powers of the president. The 19A amendment was introduced after last week's aborted attempt caused due to disruption by supporters of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa. "It has always been my desire to prune presidential powers. You all will agree that I have been very generous," Sirisena told the House. more ...
Sri Lankan journalists who fled the country for safety reasons and now living in exile in Nepal will be allowed to return, foreign minister Mangala Samaraweera told the parliament today. He was responding to a query from opposition legislator Anura Kumara Dissanayake. Dissanayake said the Sri Lankan Ambassador in Nepal had refused to facilitate the evacuation of Lankan journalists in the country. "We know that journalists had to flee the country for safety in the recent years. They were scared of white vans chasing them," Dissanayake said.
9) Apr 27, 2012 15:09:28 GMT | + Wanted Man: ‘Any Indian citizen can detain Douglas Devananda if he trespasses into Indian waters’
10) Apr 27, 2012 14:23:37 GMT | + Sri Lanka: reconciliation and justice
Sri Lankan Minister Douglas Devananda’s reported threat to cross into Indian territorial waters with 5000 Sri Lankan fishermen to protest against alleged poaching by Indian fishermen in Sri Lankan waters has once again raked up the demand for arrest of the minister in Tamil Nadu, where he is wanted in connection with a 1986 murder case. “When he is leading an agitation of this nature, he does not enjoy the diplomatic immunity that he enjoys as a minister. It is an opportunity for the Tamil Nadu police to arrest him and make him face trial in the 1986 shootout and murder case,” Advocate P Pugazhendi said. more ...
11) Apr 27, 2012 14:09:34 GMT | + MRG concerned about the attack and relocation of a mosque in Sri Lanka, calls on Sri Lankan government to take immediate action to protect religious freedoms
Nearly three years after the end of the 26-year civil war in Sri Lanka that reportedly left an estimated 80,000–100,000 dead, questions are still arising about alleged war crimes and how they will be addressed. Join us at the Frontline Club to discuss the impact of Sri Lanka's Killing Fields and the situation today in Sri Lanka. With: Callum Macrae
, journalist, filmmaker and Director of both Sri Lanka's Killing Fields and Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields: War Crimes Unpunished that documents evidence of alleged war crimes committed by the Sri Lankan Government. Dr Chris Nonis, Sri Lanka High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. Professor Rajiva Wijesinha
MP, adviser to the President on Reconciliation. Channel 4 News presenter, Jon Snow. more ...
Minority Rights Group International said on Tuesday that it was deeply concerned about the attack on a mosque by Buddhist mobs in Dambulla, in north Central Sri Lanka, and the subsequent decision by the country’s government to relocate the mosque. ‘The Government of Sri Lanka should be protecting the right to religious freedom of all its people, including Muslims, rather than giving in to mob rule,’ Mark Lattimer, Executive Director of MRG says.
12) Apr 27, 2012 13:56:49 GMT | + Witness: Man hit by cluster bomb in Sri Lanka war
A Sri Lankan man was wounded in the final months of the country's bloody civil war by an unexploded cluster bomblet that tore into his leg and buried itself in the gash, a medical worker who saw the injury told The Associated Press on Friday. The revelation, along with a photograph that purports to show the wound, added further credence to accusations cluster munitions had been used during the final months of the war.
13) Apr 27, 2012 12:41:28 GMT | + Fire destroys car of outlawed Tamil group’s former leader
14) Apr 27, 2012 12:39:48 GMT | + Sri Lanka Muslims in mosque demo
A former director of an organization outlawed by the Canadian government over its ties to Sri Lankan rebels said Thursday he was living in fear after his car was destroyed in an unexplained fire. Kamal Navaratnam’s 2002 Honda CRV was parked in his Toronto driveway when it went up in flames at about 3 a.m. Monday. “The car was completely destroyed,” said Constable Tony Vella, a Toronto police spokesman. The cause of the fire was listed as undetermined. “Officers are looking into it but foul play is not suspected at this point.” more ...
15) Apr 27, 2012 12:38:04 GMT | + Buddha wept as we beat our women
Demonstrations have been taking place in Sri Lanka by Muslims angry about hardline Buddhists’ threats against a mosque. They are also indignant at a government order that the mosque, in the town of Dambulla, should be demolished and rebuilt elsewhere. more ...
16) Apr 27, 2012 10:03:24 GMT | + Abduction fear still alive in post-war Sri Lanka
54% of adolescent girls in Sri Lanka feel that a husband is justified in beating his wife. The UNICEF Global Report Card on Adolescents 2012 however is not available yet to try and unpack this further. What do they mean? Surely, they cannot be suggesting that the arbitrary violence that some wives are subject to in Sri Lanka is acceptable; burned rice that results in cut lips and black eyes? It must be wives that were somehow overly flirtatious with another man. Wives that have behaved, or even worse, dressed, inappropriately. Wives that have proved to be whores! more ...
17) Apr 27, 2012 9:59:31 GMT | + SL refugee returns lower - UNHCR
Being "white-vanned" -- it has become a verb synonymous with being abducted in Sri Lanka -- was a widely reported tactic employed by the security forces to deal with troublesome opponents during the island's ethnic war. But rights activists such as the Asian Human Rights Council say more than 50 people have been kidnapped in the past six months alone, highlighting what they say are continuing abuses on the Indian Ocean island that is re-emerging as a popular holiday destination. more ...
The UNHCR said that the number of Sri Lankan refugees returning home has fallen in the first quarter of 2012 compared to the previous year and part of the reason could be the suspension of the Colombo-Tuticorin ferry service from India. Latest UNHCR statistics show that some 408 individuals voluntarily returned to Sri Lanka with UNHCR’s help during the first three months of this year, nearly a third less than the same period last year when 597 refugees returned.
18) Apr 27, 2012 3:07:27 GMT | + TNA forced to seek int’l help: Sampanthan
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has been forced to seek international assistance to find a political solution to the national issue as all its efforts to come to a deal with the respective governments have failed, its leader R. Sampanthan said yesterday. “We are being told not to go to India and not to go to Washington to seek help but we have been trying to find a solution locally until January this year, but there had been no favorable response from the Sri Lankan government,” he said speaking during a ceremony that was organized by his party to commemorate the late Federal Parry Leader S. J. V. Chellvanayagam at Katiresan hall said.
19) Apr 27, 2012 1:40:14 GMT | + UN Admits Cluster Bombs in Sri Lanka, But Still Spin for Silva, Ban Silent
With news that the UN Development Program in Sri Lanka has found and confirmed via a leaked e-mail cluster sub-munitions, General Shavendra Silva as a UN Senior Adviser on Peacekeeping takes on an even more sinister hue. As reported, Allan Poston, the technical adviser for UNDP's mine action group in Sri Lanka, wrote that "after reviewing additional photographs from the investigation teams, I have determined that there are cluster sub-munitions in the area where the children were collecting scrap metal and in the house where the accident [the death of a child] occurred. This is the first time that there has been confirmed unexploded sub-munitions found in Sri Lanka."
20) Apr 27, 2011 17:12:10 GMT | + Colombo, Tamil diaspora flayed in UN report
21) Apr 27, 2011 17:11:15 GMT | + The United Nations and Divided Sri Lanka
A UN report that reported war crimes in Sri Lanka towards the end of the war says both Colombo and the Tamil diaspora are obstacles to post-conflict accountability. 'It is exceedingly difficult for a nation to deal with grave human rights violations of the past and more so if violations continue into the present,' said the report which Sri Lanka has dismissed as 'fundamentally flawed'. more ...
22) Apr 27, 2011 15:35:22 GMT | + Tamil Genocide in Sri Lanka Emerges Into Public View
Sri Lanka and human rights activists around the world are in an uproar over a report released by a United Nations panel this week on the final months of the island nation's bloody civil war. The survey may prove illuminating, so far as it goes, in terms of understanding what happened during those violent six months in 2009. The greater risk is that the international response will tip Sri Lanka closer to losing the peace. Colombo's final military push through the Northern Province between January and June 2009 displaced hundreds of thousands of Tamil civilians. As the fighting neared its conclusion, the terrorist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam used thousands of civilians as human shields to try to thwart the army's advance. more ...
23) Apr 27, 2011 15:34:10 GMT | + Foreign Office welcomes UN Panel of Experts report on Sri Lanka
Our report on Sri Lanka's genocide of the Tamil people and war crimes against Liberation Tigers of Tamileelam (LTTE), came at a time when the wagons of the Sri Lankan government are tilting over on their sides. The response to that story has been almost overwhelming as evidenced by the associated comments. The response tells us what we feared; that these events of wanton slaughter were on the verge of sliding out of sight forever. When the story was published, it soared to the top of the lineup on Google under Sri Lanka Genocide where it remains at the time of this writing. more ...
24) Apr 27, 2011 14:53:13 GMT | + US welcomes report while India studies
The Foreign Office welcomed the UN Panel of Experts report on the alleged violations of international human rights and humanitarian law during the military conflict in Sri Lanka. King Charles Street building The UK has consistently called for an independent and credible investigation to address these allegations which is why we fully supported the decision of the Secretary-General to establish the Panel of Experts. more ...
25) Apr 27, 2011 14:51:44 GMT | + UN: Sri Lankan Bloodbath Much Worse Than Government Admits
Welcoming the report issued by the UN expert panel on Sri Lanka, the US says it highlights the need for an independent and full inquiry on alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka. Susan Rice, the US Permanent Representative to the UN said the report is “a valuable contribution” towards establishing justice, accountability, human rights, and reconciliation in the post-war Sri Lanka. more ...
As many as 40,000 civilians may have perished in the last phase of Sri Lanka's offensive against the insurgent Tamil Tigers, with government forces blamed for "large-scale and widespread shelling," according to a new report from a UN panel established by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The Sri Lankan government, which received an advance copy of the 195-page report, had leaked sections to national newspapers, evidently to minimize the impact by denouncing it immediately. It said the report was flawed and would exacerbate any reconciliation in the island nation of 21 million people, 18 miles off the coast of India.
26) Apr 27, 2011 14:50:06 GMT | + Emerging truth about UN failure in Sri Lanka
Two years ago, a war without witness was executed by the state against the Tamil people in the island of Sri Lanka. In September 2008, after ordering all United Nations personnel, non-government organisations and media out of the Vanni region, the Sri Lankan government embarked on a vicious military campaign. While it informed the world it was fighting the Tamil Tiger rebels and was following a ''zero civilian casualty'' policy, photographs, video footage and phone conversations with our relatives in the war zone told us a different story.
27) Apr 27, 2011 14:18:34 GMT | + UN human rights chief welcomes Sri Lanka report, urges further investigation into conduct of final stages of the war
“The way this conflict was conducted, under the guise of fighting terrorism, challenged the very foundations of the rules of war and cost the lives of tens of thousands of civilians,” the The High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said. “I hope the disturbing new information contained in this report will shock the conscience of the international community into finally taking serious action. As the report itself says, addressing violations of international humanitarian or human rights law is not a matter of choice or policy; it is a duty under domestic and international law,” The High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay added.
28) Apr 27, 2011 14:15:07 GMT | + India ready to engage Lanka on UN report
Reacting to the report by a UNSG-appointed panel of experts, which has accused Colombo of committing war crimes, India said it was willing to engage Sri Lanka on the contents of the report. India is having to walk a tightrope over the issue because of its concerns over the still incomplete rehabilitation of Tamils in the island nation, as also because of strategic compulsions arising out of China's unflinching support to Colombo.Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa had spoken to PM Manmohan Singh earlier after going through the report. Colombo is likely to go on a diplomatic offensive to garner support for itself.
29) Apr 27, 2011 13:36:26 GMT | + UN Expert Panel Report, Wavering SG and Dithering Obstinate Sri-Lanka
The UN Secretary General (SG) Mr Ban Ki-Mun appointed a UN Expert Panel on Sri- Lanka, to advise him on issues surrounding crimes in the war that ended in 19 May 2009 between the Sri-Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The panel consisted of Marzuki Darusman from Indonesia, the UN's special envoy for North Korea (Chair), human rights expert Yasmin Sooka from South Africa and Steven Ratner, an expert in international law of war from the United States. The appointment was over delayed and made only after one year in May 2010 after pressure from human rights activist like the Amnesty International (AI), International Crisis Group (ICG) and Human Rights Watch (HRW).
30) Apr 27, 2011 13:35:46 GMT | + India Must Move UN to Bring Rajapaksa to Trial: Jayalalithaa
Former Tamil Nadu chief minister J. Jayalalithaa Wednesday urged the Indian government to move the UN to bring Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa to trial for war crimes against Tamils. In a statement here, Jayalalithaa said: "With the UN report practically confirming human rights violations and brutal repression that was earlier in the realm of speculation or dismissed as biased or partisan reportage, the Indian government should now move the UN to initiate necessary steps to bring Rajapaksa to stand trial for war crimes and genocide along with his generals, senior ministers and all others who were party to the brutal excesses."
31) Apr 27, 2011 13:34:49 GMT | + Sri Lanka says U.N. war crimes report threatens peace efforts
32) Apr 27, 2011 13:32:21 GMT | + Statement from the Liberal Party of Canada on the United Nations’ report on Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka on Wednesday said the publication of U.N.-appointed panel's report blaming it for thousands of civilian deaths at the end of its civil war threatens peace-building efforts and is motivated by the political agenda of "interested parties." The United Nations on Monday published the findings of a three-member panel Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed to advise him on "issues of accountability" from the 2009 end of Sri Lanka's 25-year war with the separatist Tamil Tigers. more ...
Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff made the following statement today on the UN’s report on the recent civil war in Sri Lanka: “Following the release of a United Nations’ report on the recent civil war in Sri Lanka, the Liberal Party of Canada is pledging its support for the report and its recommendations. “The independent UN panel investigating allegations of crimes committed during the Sri Lankan conflict has made some very serious findings.
33) Apr 27, 2011 3:31:08 GMT | + Sri Lankan war crimes must be prosecuted
The Government of Sri Lanka is contesting a report by the United Nations which reveals that tens of thousands of civilians died in its final offensive to end the country's civil war two years ago. Most of them were killed by government shelling which targeted hospitals and UN and Red Cross centres, a UN panel of experts has found. The acts were war crimes, the report says. It is not a one-sided document. It also says that the Tamil Tiger rebels used 330,000 civilians as human shields, and shot those who tried to escape. But both sides contest its findings.
34) Apr 27, 2011 3:30:02 GMT | + Canadian a witness to shelling in Sri Lanka civil war
35) Apr 27, 2011 3:27:36 GMT | + Sri Lanka: No-inquiry zone
She was in a bunker on a desolate beach in Sri Lanka’s war zone when a shell exploded 100 metres away. A hunk of shrapnel tore through her tarpaulin tent and struck her in the chest. A Canadian, she sometimes thought about how her family would take it if she died. But she got lucky. By the time the shell fragment hit her, it had lost its force. It burnt away her skin but otherwise she was alright. more ...
When Richard Goldstone, the judge who headed a UN fact-finding mission to Gaza, partially recanted last month – an act that was disowned by fellow members of the mission – the saga was used as Exhibit A in the case against the UN. The organisation, it was claimed, was so inherently biased against Israel that it lacked the moral authority to investigate it. Where was the Goldstone report about Sri Lanka, some asked?
36) Apr 27, 2011 3:15:39 GMT | + UN feared for staff amid Sri Lanka conflict: Ban
37) Apr 27, 2011 3:09:48 GMT | + Canadian Tamil Congress urges meaningful action on UN Report
The United Nations feared for its staff in Sri Lanka as government troops crushed a Tamil separatist uprising in 2009, UN chief Ban Ki-moon has said defending the actions of UN agencies. As pressure grew for an international investigation into the killing of "tens of thousands" in the conflict's brutal finale, Ban was asked why the United Nations had played down casualty figures at the time. more ...
After gathering evidence for 10 months, the UN Secretary General’s three-member panel on Sri Lanka has called for a thorough investigation into what it believes to be credible allegations that war crimes, and crimes against humanity, were committed by both sides of the civil war in Sri Lanka as the war drew to an end nearly two years ago. The panel found that the government of Sri Lanka, among various violations, systematically shelled vulnerable areas during the war, including: all hospitals in the Vanni region, even though the government knew their locations; the UN hub; food distribution lines; near the ICRC ships coming to pick up the wounded; and three consecutive no-fire zones, where it encouraged the civilian population to concentrate.
38) Apr 27, 2011 2:58:55 GMT | + UN report on war crimes: Govt to engage with Lanka
With a UN panel claiming that the killing of people in the final stages of the Sri Lankan Army’s battle with the LTTE led to “war crimes”, India on Tuesday said that the issues raised in the report need to be studied carefully and it intends to engage with the Sri Lankan government on these matters. “The government has seen the report of the panel of experts appointed by the UN Secretary General to advise him on accountability-related issues in the context of the end of the armed conflict in Sri Lanka in May, 2009.
39) Apr 27, 2010 22:22:53 GMT | + Australian lawyers gather evidence on possible Sri Lanka war crimes
More than a year after Sri Lanka launched its final offensive against Tamil Tiger rebels, pressure continues to mount for an international tribunal into alleged war crimes. United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon plans to appoint a panel of experts to look into a tribunal, something the Sri Lankan government says is unwarranted and uncalled for. Now Australian lawyers are joining forces with the International Commission of Jurists to take witness statements and prepare evidence for any war crimes tribunal.
40) Apr 27, 2010 22:21:36 GMT | + UN welcomes resumption of returns of displaced Sri Lankans
41) Apr 27, 2010 22:20:28 GMT | + India, Sri Lanka discuss issue of displaced Tamils
Following a three-week pause due to parliamentary polls and holidays, Government-backed returns of people uprooted by decades of fighting to their home areas has resumed in northern Sri Lanka, a move welcomed by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Since the resumption of returns last week, some 7,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) have gone back to the districts of Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu, which both saw intense fighting between Government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) before the rebels were defeated last year. more ...
42) Apr 27, 2010 22:19:08 GMT | + Remains of a civil war catching up with Big B
India and Sri Lanka on Tuesday discussed the issue of Tamils displaced during the military action against the LTTE and highlighted the need for their expeditious resettlement with dignity. External Affairs Minister S M Krishna held a detailed exchange of views with his Sri Lankan counterpart G L Peiries on the sidelines of the SAARC Council of Ministers meeting here. The two leaders resolved to increase the content and depth of bilateral ties and noted that there should be a sense of participation and equality among all ethnic groups, official sources said. more ...
Last week, after he had launched the Indian International Film Awards (IIFA) in Colombo, an Indian journalist asked Amitabh Bachchan whether he had kept track of the war between government forces and the Tamil Tigers. It was followed by the larger question on how artists and politics should relate? Bachchan's answers are usually a mix of humility, occasional wry humour and mock anger seasoned with diplomacy; this time, they were diplomatic. "Whatever has been coming out in the newspapers and media'' and "I'm apolitical and would like to remain that way'' Bachchan answered. Probably, Bachchan — or the organising company — didn't see it coming but the reminders of the civil war that had cut up Sri Lanka for decades came to the actor's secure doorstep in Mumbai in less than aweek.
43) Apr 27, 2010 11:54:30 GMT | + Gang boss known for hostility towards journalists appointed deputy media minister
44) Apr 27, 2010 11:21:02 GMT | + Selvanayagam Selvantha, "Imagine being with traumatised people every single day"
“In what country do you appoint an arsonist to put out fires?” Reporters Without Borders asked today after learning that Mervyn Silva, a politician notorious for insulting and physically attacking journalists, has been appointed deputy minister of media and information. Labour minister in the last government, Silva was confirmed in his new post by parliament on 23 April. “The Sri Lankan government has against distinguished itself by assigning key posts to very controversial figures implicated in attacks on press freedom,” Reporters Without Borders said. more ...
45) Apr 27, 2010 9:43:13 GMT | + Pascoe visit likely in May
Selvanayagam Selvantha, 34, has worked as a pastor and social worker for eight years in rural northeast Sri Lanka, helping people to recover from the country’s civil war and the 2004 tsunami, which displaced more than a million people. He works with the Jaffna Diocese of the Church of South India, which provides free nursery and after-school activities for affected children, and spoke to IRIN about his experiences: “I work in the rural parts of Amparai and Batticaloa, and the biggest problem is the poverty that is combined with trauma. more ...
The United Nations has sought permission from the Sri Lankan government to facilitate a visit by UN Under Secretary General for Political Affairs Lynn Pascoe mid next month to discuss the developments in Sri Lanka. While the purpose of Pascoe’s visit earlier was to discuss the appointment of the UN’s panel of experts, it is unsure if such discussions are still on the agenda. “Lyn Pascoe has asked to visit in the second week of May. There has been no confirmation yet,” the source said. Sri Lanka’s Attorney General Mohan Peiris met UN Chief Ban Ki Moon in New York recently and held lengthy discussions. It is learnt that during these discussions, the two had discussed about the panel of experts.
46) Apr 27, 2010 9:36:49 GMT | + Chinese Navy’s Power Projection
Since the beginning of last year, the Chinese Navy, which no longer makes a secret of its aspiration of becoming a Pacific naval power on par with the US, has been adopting a dual strategy. This strategy is marked by an open and increasing assertiveness in the South and East China Seas and by a defensive extension of its capabilities, areas of operation and naval networking into the Indian Ocean and the Gulf areas. While thus taking an increasingly assertive line on the presence and activities of its Navy in South and East China Seas and West Pacific, Chine continues to maintain a low profile over the presence and activities of its naval vessels in the Indian Ocean and Gulf Regions.
47) Apr 27, 2010 9:34:30 GMT | + British candidate calls Tamils victims of genocide
Dr Rachel Joyce, Conservative Parliamentary Candidate, Harrow West, UK, in a statement circulated to her constituents, said she believes that since Sri Lanka's independence "the acts perpetrated the Government of Sri Lanka on Tamils including the burning down of Jaffna library...disappearance of Tamil individuals...and the use of concentration-style camps for internally displaced Tamils should be classed as Genocide." Dr Joyce further made a campaign promise to "work with the Tamils to get the acts perpetrated on the Tamils classed legally as a genocide so that the UN Convention can be used to address the problems."
48) Apr 27, 2010 9:29:24 GMT | + IIFA venue as Sri Lanka is doubtful-Amitabh Bachchan
49) Apr 27, 2010 9:26:21 GMT | + Sri Lanka stock brokers enter former war zone
Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka was announced as the venue for India International Film Award (IIFA) by its brand ambassador, Amitabh Bachchan who now seems confused about this decision as the Tamil population in Mumbai and Canada has protested and asked him to find for some other location to hold the IIFA awards. Moreover the Canadian Tamil Congress has also joined hands with protesters saying that if Amitabh Bachchan holds IIFA in the country then it would boost up the Sri Lankan govt. position which will result in more oppression for Tamils in the country. more ...
Six Sri Lankan stock brokers have opened offices in the former war zone of northern Jaffna with the setting up of a branch of the Colombo Stock Exchange there, a statement said. The stock brokers will offer clients access to online trading, real-time market information, research reports and investment advice, the CSE statement said. The six stock brokers are Bartleet Mallory Stockbrokers, Asha Phillip Securities, Lanka Securities, Capital TRUST Securities, SKM Lanka Holdings and SMB Securities. The island's 30-year ethnic war ended last May, resulting in an economic revival and expectations of a boom as the resources of the war-ravaged north and east come into play.
50) Apr 27, 2010 2:56:30 GMT | + War Story:'It was a secret war, but,the war is over and that leaves a lot of questions unanswered'
51) Apr 27, 2010 2:55:34 GMT | + Tamils have no voice in Sri Lanka
Dateline reporter, Ginny Stein, recently travelled to Sri Lanka and to New York to test the claims of the survivors of that very, very vicious conflict. But not everyone in the international community is as keen to move on. Concerns about war crimes are being raised at the highest levels of the UN and hard questions are being asked about the government's conduct. more ...
52) Apr 27, 2010 2:32:23 GMT | + Prabha's mother may come back next month
Results from last weekend's referendum by Australia's Sri Lankan Tamil population have given almost unanimous support for the proposal for an independent Tamil homeland in Sri Lanka. The vote by Australian Sri Lankan Tamils follows those in seven other countries, including Canada and Britain, each of which have produced a 99 per cent vote in favour of Tamil independence. The vote might seem redundant, following the defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in a bloody, dirty war in Sri Lanka that ended in May 2009. However, Sri Lanka's large Tamil diaspora have long played a critical role in the lives of Sri Lankan Tamils, not least in actively supporting the more than three decade long struggle for independence. more ...
Slain LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran's 80-year-old widowed mother Parvathi Pillai is to return to Sri Lanka from Malaysia next month, Tamil National Liberation Alliance (TNLA) general secretary M.K. Sivajilingam said yesterday. "The ailing Ms. Pillai is now in Malaysia living with family friends awaiting a visa to enter Canada. It is unlikely that she will get it. In case she is refused a visa I will bring her back to Sri Lanka," Mr. Sivajilingam said. She was denied entry to India when she arrived at the Chennai airport recently.
53) Apr 27, 2010 2:30:37 GMT | + Dutch police arrest seven for alleged Tamil Tiger links
Police arrested seven men in the Netherlands on Monday who are suspected of raising funds for Sri Lankan separatist group the Tamil Tigers, a statement said. "They are suspected of raising funds for the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) through collections, fundraisers, the sale of DVDs and calendars and illegal lotteries," said a statement from the national police. Investigators searched 16 homes and businesses in different towns and seized computers, telephones, photos, DVDs and a cash sum of more than 40,000 euros (53,000 dollars).
54) Apr 27, 2009 20:03:11 GMT | + Conservative, Liberal and Bloc MPs met Tamils behind scenes
Despite media reports, MPs from all parties met with their Tamil constituents and representatives from the Tamil diaspora in Canada in the weeks leading up to the two-week around-the-clock protests ending in last week's massive rally on Parliament Hill. Minister of State for Americas Peter Kent met Tamils and says he would have attended massive rally on the Hill, but was with PM. A week after the end of the 14-day Tamil protest in downtown Ottawa, the Liberals say they are trying to work with the government in behind-the-scenes "diplomatic talks."
55) Apr 27, 2009 19:51:01 GMT | + Stop war in Lanka, Thamarai's loud cry
56) Apr 27, 2009 19:45:41 GMT | + Sri Lanka must respect heavy weapons pledge says United Nations
If many directors have vociferously spoken against the genocide in Lanka and the government's inaction about it, it is Thamarai from the camp of the lyricists who has been vocal in her anger over the issue. By clearly stating that art cannot be separated from the people that it is created for, the lyricist said all in the film fraternity, belonging to the world of art, should openly criticize those in politics as they weren’t working in the interest of the people. more ...
The United Nations Aid Chief John Holmes says Sri Lanka must put in to practice its latest pledge not to use heavy weapons as it fights the Tamil Tiger rebels. Amid mounting diplomatic pressure to protect civilians caught in the island's war zone, the government said on Monday it would no longer use heavy weapons as it moves in to rescue those still trapped. Mr Holmes says he hopes the pledge will be genuinely be respected, but warns that's not been the case in the past. The United Nations estimates 50,000 people are still trapped in rebel-held territory.
57) Apr 27, 2009 19:43:37 GMT | + Obama only hope for Lanka issue: Vaiko
Pro-Eelam MDMK leader Vaiko on Monday said US President Barack Obama was "the only hope" to ensure a solution for the Sri Lankan Tamils issue and sought his intervention in putting an end to the "genocidal war" in the island nation. In a letter sent to Mr. Obama, Mr. Vaiko said LTTE responded to the US' latest appeal for a ceasefire and announced it on April 26, but Sri Lanka had rejected the call. Alleging that many Tamils were being killed in the ongoing offensive by the Sri Lankan army in the embattled north, Vaiko wrote in the letter, "at this grave hour of catastrophe, you (Obama) are the only hope for us, who can effectively intervene to stop the genocidal war of Sri Lanka and save our Tamils."
58) Apr 27, 2009 18:44:03 GMT | + Sri Lanka steps up intense barrage of heavy weapons
Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) bombers continued heavy bombardment on Mu'l'li-vaaykkaal in five sorties unloading bombs 23 times, completely disregarding the announcement by the Colombo government that its armed forces were instructed to halt the deployment of heavy weapons. Latest reports indicate heavy barrage by the SLA targeted Mu'l'li-vaaykkaal area since 7:00 p.m., when the SLA started firing artillery shells fitted with cluster munitions, Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL) fire and heavy mortar fire from many directions on the northern side of Mu'l'li-vaaykkaal in the so-called safety zone, signalling a ground offensive. Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) gunboats have also started firing in the evening, the reports further said.
59) Apr 27, 2009 18:41:14 GMT | + IC has been duped by Colombo: Prof. Ramasamy
60) Apr 27, 2009 18:39:34 GMT | + The coming battle
The Tokyo-Co-chairs and other international actors have been duped in supporting the war aims of the Sri Lankan government, says Professor P. Ramasamy, Deputy Chief Minister of Penang, Malaysia, in an exclusive interview to TamilNet. “The LTTE is expression of Tamil discontent of the Sri Lankan government and the way the latter has dealt with the Tamil national question. In so far as the conflict in Aceh was concerned, the international community was much neutral in providing the political circumstances for peace to be achieved. However, in the Sri Lankan conflict, the international took a biased stand. more ...
SRI LANKA’S government declared officially on Monday April 27th that “combat operations have reached their conclusion” in the last sliver of territory held by the Tamil Tigers. It instructed the army “to end the use of heavy-calibre guns, combat aircraft and aerial weapons which could cause civilian casualties.” On Sunday the Tiger rebels had declared a unilateral ceasefire, saying it was the only way to end a humanitarian crisis involving thousands of civilians trapped in the narrow tract of northern coastline still held by the militants. Sri Lanka’s president, Mahinda Rajapaksa, promptly rejected the truce as a ploy and insisted that the Tigers must surrender after laying down their weapons.
61) Apr 27, 2009 18:38:55 GMT | + My Eelam demand not anti-national: Jaya
AIADMK leader Jayalalithaa has rejected Congress' criticism of her support to the Tamil Eelam cause, saying her statement had not violated any Indian law and so cannot be dubbed as "anti-national". "I am not calling for any separate nation to be carved out of Indian territory; I am a patriot to the core. I have stated that a separate Tamil Ealam should be carved out in Sri Lanka. How can that be an anti-national act in India?" she said in a statement in Chennai.
62) Apr 27, 2009 18:37:06 GMT | + Cessation of hostilities: Did Chidambaram jump the gun?
Did Home Minister P. Chidambaram jump the gun on Monday in welcoming a 'cessation of hostilities in Sri Lanka'? Hours after Chidambaram said this and urged Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi to call off his fast, Sri Lankan officials said that they had made no such declaration. Lankan officials say they had only announced that heavy calibre weapons and aerial bombardment would not be used while rescuing thousands of civilians trapped in the northern war zone.
63) Apr 27, 2009 15:18:35 GMT | + Sri Lanka block access to civilians in war-zone:UN
64) Apr 27, 2009 15:07:14 GMT | + We cannot ignore Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka is refusing humanitarian access to its war zone where some 50,000 people are believed trapped, a top UN diplomat said on Monday, while welcoming a government move to slow down its military offensive. The UN's humanitarian chief John Holmes failed to secure agreement with President Mahinda Rajapakse in talks here Monday to send a humanitarian mission to the shrinking conflict area on the island's northeast coast. more ...
65) Apr 27, 2009 15:05:57 GMT | + EU urges immediate Sri Lanka ceasefire
The UN estimates that since January more than 6,400 civilians have died and almost 15,000 have been injured. But the figure could be much higher, as the government has refused to allow independent observers into the area "for their own safety." In a rare statement, the director of operations for the International Committee of the Red Cross said last week that he could not recall a situation in recent years as painful and extreme. You might have expected that governments around the world would have done all they could to alleviate so much pain and suffering. Not a bit of it. The UN security council has done virtually nothing. more ...
The European Union welcomed on Monday the Sri Lankan government's announcement of an end to heavy military operations again rebels, but urged an immediate ceasefire to allow evacuation of endangered civilians. EU foreign ministers reaffirmed concern about mass civilian casualties and worsening humanitarian conditions in northern Sri Lanka, saying civilians there remained in "extreme peril". "It (the Council) urges an immediate humanitarian ceasefire to allow for a U.N.-assisted evacuation of those still trapped in the conflict zone," they said in a statement.
66) Apr 27, 2009 15:03:54 GMT | + Tamils Attack Sri Lankan, Indian Missions In London
Six people were arrested Monday after Tamil protesters smashed windows at India's High Commission in London and caused damage outside Sri Lanka's diplomatic mission, Scotland Yard said. Some 200 people gathered outside each of the two countries' missions to demonstrate against the ongoing violence in Sri Lanka, where Tamil Tigers are vowing to make a final stand against government forces. Extra police were drafted in after "an incident occured at the Indian High Commission, which has resulted in some damage to the building," said a Scotland Yard spokeswoman.
67) Apr 27, 2009 12:19:12 GMT | + Lanka says no ceasefire, rescue operations to continue
Sri Lanka on Monday said it has not declared a ceasefire with the LTTE, but has only announced that heavy caliber weapons will not be used while rescuing thousands of civilians trapped in the northern war zone. The government said as the security forces are now close to victory it will in no form leave a breather for the LTTE or its leaders by offering a truce. "There is no ceasefire. The government will go ahead with their operation to get the civilians out of the 'No Fire Zone' who are being held hostage by the LTTE," Lakshman Hullagulle, director-general of the Media Center for National Security, said.
68) Apr 27, 2009 12:16:58 GMT | + 'Show of might only could stop the war'
69) Apr 27, 2009 12:14:21 GMT | + Silence over Sri Lanka
"Only a joint show of might, without wasting any time by the IC, can stop Colombo. This is the last chance for the IC if it is really interested in seeing a post-conflict Sri Lanka," writes a political commentator in Colombo. "Everybody knows how the current war in Sri Lanka has been perpetrated by the international community through systematic sabotage of the military and diplomatic balance in favour of the genocidal state of Sri Lanka. Initially the IC wanted political solution to go hand in hand with the military option. The IC failed miserably in achieving it and the way the war seems to be ending, political solution will be a mirage for ages. more ...
In Sri Lanka a bloody conflict is reaching its bloody conclusion. Some 30 years ago, the Tamil population that inhabits the north and east of the island began an insurrection against the government, establishing for this purpose an organisation known as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. The ultimate aim of the Tamil Tigers was to establish an independent Tamil state, thus partitioning the island. The means chosen to bring this about was to create terror and mayhem throughout the island, and, if necessary, beyond it. Not content with common-or-garden political assassinations and random murders, the Tamil Tigers pioneered the use of the suicide bomb and the suicide belt.
70) Apr 27, 2009 12:07:06 GMT | + UK's Miliband:World Concerned By Civilian Deaths In Sri Lanka
The international community is distressed by the scale of civilian deaths in Sri Lanka, U.K. Foreign Secretary David Miliband said Monday as he welcomed Colombo's announcement of a halt to combat operations against Tamil rebels. "The scale of civilian casualties is very large indeed, extremely distressing to the international community and completely inimicable to any kind of long- term settlement," said Miliband in Luxembourg, where he was attending a meeting of European Union foreign ministers. "That's why we think it is very, very important that we follow through on the government of Sri Lanka's welcome announcement...of a cease to combat operations in the northeast."
71) Apr 27, 2009 12:03:27 GMT | + All hospitals are really struggling - MSF doctor in Sri Lanka
72) Apr 27, 2009 11:35:57 GMT | + Indian High Commission in UK attacked by Tamil protesters
This blog is by Paul McMaster, a surgeon working with Medecins Sans Frontieres at Vavuniya hospital in northern Sri Lanka which is treating civilians from the conflict zone. Medical staff are still working round the clock and the situation is changing day to day. The number of patients admitted requiring emergency surgery has dropped quite sharply before the weekend. On April 23 we had 44 patients, the first day the figure was below 100 since last Sunday. On April 24, we only had 18. more ...
Five Tamil protesters were on Monday arrested as they forced their way inside the Indian High Commission and smashed the bullet proof glasses while thousands agitated against the assault by the Sri Lankan Army on the LTTE in the island nation. Metropolitan police handcuffed five pro-LTTE supporters after they attacked the bullet-proof glasses in the front of the India House, housing the Indian High Commission, at Aldwych and forced their way inside.
73) Apr 27, 2009 11:30:04 GMT | + Tamil Tigers Will "Never Surrender" - Spokesman
Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers will never surrender and will fight on until their demands are met, rebel spokesman S. Puleethevan said Monday. He said fighting was continuing to rage between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, or LTTE, and security forces on Monday, a day after the government rejected a ceasefire offer from the guerrillas. "We made our position very clear to the international community. We will never surrender till our legitimate demands are met," Puleethevan said.
74) Apr 27, 2009 10:29:57 GMT | + Karunanidhy withdraws Fast Within Hours
Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu and DMK chief M. Karunanidhi, who launched an indefinite fast demanding immediate cea-sefire in Sri Lanka, withdrew the fast within hours after Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram promised him that the Centre would hold talks with Sri Lankan Government in this regard. The DMK leader said he had agreed to end the fast after speaking to Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, who assured him the crisis in Sri Lanka, where troops have closed in on the remaining strip of Tiger stronghold leaving many Tamil civilians trapped, would be resolved.
75) Apr 27, 2009 10:27:36 GMT | + Jayalalitha reiterates Tamil Eelam demand
AIADMK chief Jayalalitha Monday reiterated her demand for an independent Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka, even as Colombo announced the end of its combat operations against the Tamil Tigers and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi called off his fast. “I am not calling for any separate nation to be carved out of Indian territory. I am a patriot to the core and I do not need (Congress leader) Kapil Sibal to teach me lessons in patriotism. I have stated that a separate Tamil Eelam should be carved out in Sri Lanka,” Jayalalitha said in a statement.
76) Apr 27, 2009 10:24:10 GMT | + Sri Lanka continues air strikes violating own announcement - Puleedevan
Two Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) fighter bombers continued to bomb civilian targets in Mu'l'li-vaaykkaal after the announcement by the Sri Lankan forces that it would not deploy heavy weapons or carry out air attacks as pressure mounted from the International Community. LTTE's Director of Peace Seceratariat, S. Puleedevan, when contacted by TamilNet told that SLAF bombers were attacking civilian targets at Mu'l'li-vaaykkaal at 12:50 p.m. and again at 1:10 p.m. despite the announcement to cease such attacks. He blamed Colombo for "attempting to deceive the International Community, including the people of Tamil Nadu," with the announcement.
77) Apr 27, 2009 4:47:01 GMT | + Thousands of Tamils demonstrate outside U.S. embassy
Toronto police had to draw on officers from divisions across the city as a crowd of Tamil demonstrators swelled outside the U.S. embassy late tonight. University Ave. was closed from Queen to Dundas Sts. as the number of protesters, many waving Canadian and Tamil Tiger flags, grew from hundreds of people at 7 p.m. to thousands by 11. Police control officers and mounted units were initially able to contain the noisy, banner- and placard-waving crowd in the northbound lanes in front of the provincial court building on Armory St. But the crowd grew and all of University was shut down around 10 p.m.
78) Apr 27, 2009 3:29:18 GMT | + Rebels lash out at India
Mr P Nadesan, head of the LTTE’s political wing, has lashed out at the Indian government for failing to play a constructive role in the ongoing conflict. In an e-mail interview to The Statesman, he expressed his sadness at the Indian government’s continuing “military aid” and “diplomatic support” to the Sri Lankan government. “The current Indian government’s position, action, and inaction are very disappointing. Not only have they not identified the true friends and natural allies of their strategic region, but in fact are acting against them. We are also very sad to see, that the current Indian government is providing all kinds of military aid and diplomatic support to the Sri Lankan government in waging this genocidal war against Tamils,” Mr Nadesan said.
79) Apr 27, 2009 3:07:22 GMT | + Karunanidhi on a fast for Sri Lankan Tamils
Dravida Munnettra Kazhagam (DMK) supremo and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi has gone on a fast to protest the plight of Tamils in Sri Lanka. The Chief Minister is protesting at the Anna Memorial in Chennai. "Despite the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) calling for a ceasefire, the Sri Lankan government has done nothing. Rajapakse (Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse) has killed so many Tamils. Let him consider me also. I am fasting for Sri Lankan Tamil cause," said Karunandhi.
80) Apr 27, 2009 2:58:23 GMT | + Sri Lanka rejects rebel ceasefire
81) Apr 27, 2009 2:34:52 GMT | + SLA opens fire on all fronts of safe-zone
The Sri Lankan government has rejected a ceasefire declaration by rebels in the north, saying it was a "joke", and the Tamil Tigers are close to defeat. The rebels had said their unilateral truce declaration was a response to an "unprecedented humanitarian crisis". A senior UN humanitarian official, in Sri Lanka, has said an urgent pause in fighting is needed to distribute aid. The UN says some 50,000 civilians remain trapped in the conflict zone, but the army puts the number at 15,000. more ...
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) began firing from all points along the north, west and south of safe-zone in the early hours of Monday around 3:45 a.m., according to initial reports. Heavy gunfire was reported in the north and south of Mu'l'li-vaaykkaal. The aggression by the SLA comes a few hours after Sri Lanka rejected LTTE announced unilateral ceasefire. Mu'l'li-vaaykkaal area is densely populated with tens of thousands of civilians, who are already starving due to the denial of World Food Programme (WFP) of the United Nations.
82) Apr 27, 2009 2:32:13 GMT | + Sri Lankan situation like a human tsunami: Sri Ravi Shankar
Terming the plight of the people displaced by the conflict in Sri Lanka as a "human tsunami", Indian spiritual leader Sri Ravi Shankar has appealed the Indian government and the civil society to provide more help to the suffering people. "When the tsunami occurred (in 2004), everyone came forward to help. I would say this is nothing less than a human tsunami. Why hasn't anyone come to help even at this moment of huge influx of people to the camps?" asked Sri Sri, as the Art of Living founder is known. He visited the internally displaced people (IDP) welfare centres in Vavuniya, Sri Lanka, April 21 during his three-day visit of the nation.
83) Apr 27, 2008 23:02:46 GMT | + Leak of military secrets led to Muhamalai debacle: UNP
The main opposition UNP yesterday charged the leakage of military secrets to gain political mileage had led to the debacles in Muhamalai and other areas where over 700 military personnel have been killed and over 2,400 injured during the last three months. UNP MP, Lakshman Kiriella told a news conference yesterday that senior military officials with the instigation of the government had come up openly publicising the planned military strategies. He said this was the case in December prior to the budget when the forces suffered a major setback. “The government had done the same thing this time as well to gain advantage at the coming provincial polls in the East,” he said.
84) Apr 27, 2008 19:49:15 GMT | + President Mahmud Ahmadinejad starts South Asian tour today
On Monday, President Mahmud Ahmadinejad will start a tour of Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and India. Heading a high-ranking delegation, the president will first land in Islamabad, where he is planned to stay for four hours and meet Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz. Ahmadinejad will then head for Colombo for a two-day visit, where the two countries’ officials will sign some cooperation agreements.
85) Apr 27, 2008 19:48:03 GMT | + SLA occupation of Madu, triggers fears of renewed Sinhalicisation
The Madu Road junction located on Mannaar-Madawachchi Road, which branches off the main route to Madu shrine, situated in the middle of traditional Tamil area, became the center of a Sinhala settlement in the 1970s. The Sri Lanka Government had the agenda of transforming the area into a full-fledged Sinhala colony, by using the lands of a cashew farm between the Madu Shrine and the junction. However, the settlement was later abandoned, fearing repercussions following large-scale massacre and arson committed by the Sri Lanka Army in December 1984 after a landmine blast. The spectre of a Sinhalicised Madu area has now become a dangerous new reality with SLA's occupation of Madu shrine.
86) Apr 27, 2008 13:07:58 GMT | + “TNA won’t campaign forany party in the east” — Sampanthan
To us this is an illegitimate election process. We were not prepared to compromise on certain fundamental policies by partaking in the process, and thereby giving the government the opportunity to say that we had legitimized the eastern province by partaking in the eastern election. Our supporters will do well to remember all the harm that has been inflicted upon them by this government Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Secretary General and Parliamentarian R. Sampanthan has made clear his party’s position, as to why it was not contesting the May 10 Provincial Polls.
87) Apr 27, 2008 12:53:11 GMT | + US admonishes Sri Lanka on ‘new friends’
The United States Government has sent out a strong warning to Sri Lanka over the island’s rapidly growing close ties and diplomatic relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran. In the backdrop of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s scheduled state visit to Sri Lanka tomorrow, US State Department Spokesperson Tom Casey has clearly disclosed their concerns over the Iranian President’s South Asia visit. During the daily press briefing in Washington, last Monday, Spokesperson Casey said that it was up to every country to determine for itself how it was going to organise its bilateral relations with Iran and that it was up to them to determine how best to manage them.
88) Apr 27, 2008 12:52:18 GMT | + Mannaar Bishop demands open declaration of Madu as Peace Zone
Bishop of Mannaar, Rev. Dr. Rayappu Joseph, on Saturday told media that the warring parties should openly declare the Madu Shrine and its environs as Peace Zone in order to bring back Our Lady of Madu statue to the Holy Shrine. Meanwhile Sri Lankan Defence ministry in its official news on Sunday quoted Sri Lanka Army Commander Lt. Gen. Sarath Fonseka as saying: "those who were in charge of the statue have the responsibility of bringing it back". The SL defence ministry added that Madu "would be declared as a security zone," without specifying what it meant with the term, 'security zone.' Vicar General Rev. A. Victor Soosai on Saturday visited the Shrine for an inspection.
89) Apr 27, 2008 12:47:52 GMT | + Jeyaraj Fernandopulle - A Tamil Perspective
It is not in good taste to speak uncharitably of someone who was buried only a few days ago - particularly since some of my comments can be misunderstood to be those that belong to the personal domain. But JF was a public figure and my comments in fair intent, are made in the interest of the public good. I count on a media culture that respects plurality and diversity of views to offer expression to my comments.
90) Apr 27, 2008 12:33:43 GMT | + Sri Lanka’s case on GSP+ concessionsVisiting Marks and Spencer boss assures support
A visiting top executive of Marks and Spencer (M&S), the major British retailer, last week assured Cabinet Ministers, Prof. G. L. Peiris and Dr. Sarath Amunugama that he would push Sri Lanka’s case for GSP+ concessions. "I understand how important the GSP+ scheme is for Sri Lanka. I will do everything possible to support your application for these concessions", said Sir Stuart Rose, the Chief Executive Officer of M&S, the largest clothing operator in the United Kingdom.
91) Apr 27, 2008 4:43:30 GMT | + Lies, damn lies and statistics
Firstly, they lie to the people, regularly, and secondly their motives are predominantly political, and barely military in nature. The lies are pumped out irrespective of whether it is over the number of soldiers killed in battle, the number of LTTE cadres killed in a battle, the number of LTTE cadres remaining to be killed, or the time-frame for finishing the war. Every estimate for all these figures, given by the military over the last several months, has been proven untrue, time and time again.
92) Apr 27, 2007 19:47:14 GMT | + UK Embassy Snubs Amnesty’s Human Rights call
The British high commission in Sri Lanka waived its diplomatic neutrality on Friday to support Sri Lanka's cricket team in their World Cup final against Australia. "We're hoping for a repeat of the 1996 World Cup final result. Come on you Sri Lankan Lions. Let's hear you roar," a message from the UK High Commission said. This action is considered as a snub on the Amnesty International’s campaign of ‘Play by the Rules’. Controversial involvements and undiplomatic statements of the UK embassy in Sri Lanka shows that human rights are still a subjective opinion in the arena of international politics.
93) Apr 27, 2007 14:04:30 GMT | + Air Force to Set Up Forward Enclave in Rameswaram Near Sri Lankan Border
The Indian Air Force (IAF) will set up an enclave in the Rameswaram region, according to Air Marshal Y.R. Rane, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Air Command, Thiruvananthapuram. Asked whether there was a link between the establishment of the mobile radar system and the LTTE air strikes, he said it was a coincidence. "That [LTTE attack] is not the reason. Air defence is dynamic in nature. The radar established here covers an area of our responsibility. We have radars all over the place. It all depends upon what we assess the area."
94) Apr 27, 2007 13:18:50 GMT | + Action against Tamil Diaspora Activists debilitating the conflict resolution process in Sri Lanka
The IFT expresses shock and despair at the use of anti- terror laws in USA and France, against Tamil Diaspora activists. The arrested activists were not involved in any form of violence against host countries or the international community. Contrarily, they were pleading for assistance from host countries to prevent massacres and gross breaches of human rights and humanitarian laws committed by the Sri Lankan government. And they were seeking support for the legitimate political aspirations of the Tamil people in the Island of Sri Lanka. Furthermore, they were supporting the LTTE in the conflict resolution process, including the Norway facilitated CFA and Peace process. The USA and France are also supporting these CFA and peace process.
95) Apr 27, 2007 10:57:19 GMT | + Rebels kill three sailors in fighting in Sri Lanka
Tamil Tiger rebels killed three Sri Lankan navy soldiers on a foot patrol in a firefight near the east coast town of Trincomalee early on Friday, a defence ministry spokesman said. "Three sailors were killed. They fired with small arms and they were killed near a navy camp at Kuchchaveli," a spokesman for the Media Centre for National Security said. The attack inflicted "severe damage" on the rebels, known by their official name, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the Centre's Web site reported without giving details.
96) Apr 27, 2007 10:51:21 GMT | + Looting by armed group continues in Kotahena
An unidentified ‘armed group’ is said to be looting shops owned by Tamils at night in the Kotahena and Old Moor street areas, traders told the Daily Mirror yesterday. This came less than a month after shop owners in the area were forced to close their shops in protest following threats of extortion and abductions. According to one trader who wished to remain anonymous an unknown group had forced its way into his store on Wednesday night and got away with a large sum of money and other valuables. He claimed several other stores in the area were also looted within the past few days and that a complaint had been lodged with the Kotahena police.
97) Apr 27, 2007 10:36:12 GMT | + Citing child soldiers, HRW urges cut in military aid to Sri Lanka
Human Rights Watch (HRW) this week called on the United States to curtail military assistance to Sri Lanka, along with other countries whose armed forces recruit youngsters into the military. The New York based rights group, which has long been critical of the Liberation Tigers for recruiting fighters under the age of 18 said “US military assistance should not go to finance the use and exploitation of children in armed conflict” and called for support for a bill tabled in the senate to cut military aid to such countries.
98) 04:26 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Amnesty International calls for respect for human rights in escalation of violence
99) 04:07 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Sri Lanka faces a problem far greater than the escalation of violence
The suicide bombing and retaliatory action in the form of aerial bombardments and shelling by the Sri Lanka joint armed forces in Trincomalee district against LTTE positions may signal a return to full-scale war which would be likely to have devastating consequences for the human rights of civilians in Sri Lanka.It has been reported that at least twelve civilians were killed during the attacks and counter-attacks in LTTE controlled areas in Muttur East in Trincomalee district in the past two days, although this has not been independently verified.Amnesty International appeals to the parties to take all possible measures to minimize harm to civilians and adhere to human rights and international humanitarian law, which prohibit murder or violence to those taking no active part in hostilities. Both parties must ensure that their forces do not target civilians or carry out indiscriminate attacks. more ...
100) 03:59 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + What are we waiting for? The Sinhala Government of Mahinda Rajapakse has started the 'Final Solution'
Violence is escalating in Sri Lanka, with an attack by a suicide bomber in Colombo on the army headquarters that has seriously injured the army commander and killed many others. In retaliation, the Government of Sri Lanka has ordered air and naval attacks on LTTE strongholds. The international media is announcing a “return to war” in response to this escalation of violence. The lower level of violence that prevailed during the cease fire is now being pushed higher. However, the problem Sri Lanka faces is much worse than a mere escalation of violence. A country that is already facing a collapse of its basic institutions and living at the lowest ebb of the rule of law is now plunging deeper into an abysmal crisis in all areas of life. The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has warned of this situation for a long time. more ...
101) 03:54 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + RCMP raid deeply hurts local Tamil community
It is over 60 years ago that the German Nazis engaged in the execrable 'Final Solution' of what they termed the Jewish problem in their midst. It was no more and no less than the savage annihilation of the Jews who had been settled in Europe for over a thousand years. The gas chambers of Auschwitz and Buchenwald that are still standing are macabre testimonies to the evil of racist superiority propounded and practiced by the butchers of Nazi Germany. In a similar manner, the fate of the Tamils too is unquestionably sealed if left any longer in their hands of the Sinhala government. The genocidal ethnic cleansing undertaken by successive Sinhala Sri Lankan governments resulted in the killing of nearly 100,000 Tamil civilians and has driven nearly two million Tamils into traumatic internal exile in the Vanni and family-rending exile in foreign lands. The Sinhala psyche is such that there can be no room in their minds for the continued existence of a Tamil nation within the present state of Sri Lanka. more ...
102) 03:47 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + TRO makes urgent appeal to the International Community for Humanitarian Assistance to the War IDPs
Scarborough's Tamil community is deeply hurt' by RCMP raids on Scarborough offices of the World Tamil Movement, Canadian Tamil Congress spokesperson David Poopalapillai said yesterday. Boxes were reportedly taken away Saturday from the WTM building at 39 Cosentino Dr., as well as from a second building downtown. It was not known yesterday if another WTM building at 1231 Ellesmere Rd. was raided. The RCMP raided Montreal offices of the WTM earlier this month, just days after the federal Conservative government added the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam to Canada's list of banned terrorist organizations. It has been alleged that the WTM in Canada acts as a fundraising arm for the Tamil Tigers, most recently in a Human Rights Watch report, Funding the Final War, whose conclusions about intimidation of the community by Tiger fundraisers were denied by the CTC and other Toronto-area Tamil groups. more ...
103) 01:56 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Thousands fleeing air strikes in northeast Sri Lanka: UN
Thousands of persons from Ralkuli, Kadakaraichchenai, Senaiyoor, Sampoor, Ilakkanthai, Sudaikuda, Paddalipuram and Upparu in the Trincomalee district have been displaced due to the ongoing air, sea, and ground attacks by the Security Forces of Government of Sri Lanka. The IDPs affected by the previous week’s communal violence are also streaming into LTTE controlled areas from the government controlled areas. The number of IDPs has passed the 30,000 mark and continues to rise. Due to extensive and continuous shelling and bombing the relief and rescue efforts are being severely hampered and travel to the affected areas to carry out humanitarian work has been nearly impossible. The disaster management structure of the TRO, though it has been severely impacted, has responded to this emergency and the TRO staff and volunteers are assisting the IDPs. more ...
104) 01:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Sri Lanka Tamil Rebels Denounce Air Raids as `Genocidal' Attack
Government air strikes in northeast Sri Lanka have caused thousands of people to flee their homes, the United Nations refugee agency said. UNHCR spokesman Lyndon Jeffels said UN staff could not confirm local government figures in the district of Trincomalee that 40,000 had been driven from their homes by two days of air strikes against Tamil Tiger rebels. But he said it was clear that many thousands of frightened people were on the move. "Certainly it seems that there is a very significant displacement as a consequence of the aerial bombardment," Jeffels told BBC radio.
- Thousands flee as air force attacks Sri Lankan rebels
- The Independant more ...
105) 21:08 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Fear stalks Tamil port of peace
Sri Lankan rebels appealed to the international community to press for a halt to air attacks on Tamil areas carried out in retaliation for a suicide bombing in Colombo that wounded the country's army commander. The government of Sri Lanka has ``openly declared war'' and countries are turning a blind eye to its actions, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam said in a statement late yesterday. ``We call on the international community to strongly condemn this genocidal attempt on the Tamil-speaking people.'' Air force planes and navy vessels fired missiles at rebel- held areas in Muttur after the April 25 bombing in Colombo. The attack showed the LTTE has ``broken all the efforts toward peace,'' President Mahinda Rajapakse said. more ...
106) 12:31 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Sri Lanka: Ethnic melting pot on the boil
"Peace is happiness," reads a poster visible from the road as our car rolls into this picturesque port city on the north-east coast of Sri Lanka. In more peaceful times, Trincomalee's long beaches are popular with surfers, scuba divers and whale watchers. Locals talk proudly about its natural deep water harbour. Today, there is palpable fear over the town. The escalation of violence between the Tamil Tiger rebels and Sri Lanka's security forces over the past three weeks - about 100 people have died, some 70 of them soldiers - has disrupted life in this region.
- Curfew after Sri Lanka air raids
- BBC more ...
107) 12:31 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Masked gunmen bring death to a Sri Lankan village
Sri Lanka's Tamil separatist conflict is rooted in the nation's history, but the past three decades have been the bloodiest on an island colonised by Europeans and invaded by Indians. At least 60,000 people have been killed since minority Tamils took up arms in 1972, about 24 years after the Indian Ocean island won independence from Britain. The British, the last in a long line of imperialists, dominated the island for 133 years with a policy of "divide and rule" among the majority Sinhalese and ethnic Tamils. Moves by the Sinhalese to retake key state jobs that had been controlled by the better-educated Tamils brought communal tensions into the open. But folk stories have long been told of ancient wars between Tamil and Sinhala kings. Many believe the state more ...
108) 10:56 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Sri Lankan peace deal in danger
The two men who came to kill her and her family wore masks and spoke Sinhalese, a wounded Josep Devi, wincing in pain, said from her hospital bed in this northeastern Sri Lankan town on Thursday. “I managed to save my baby by rolling on her as I fell when a bullet hit me,” Devi, a Tamil speaker, told AFP through an interpreter. She said she fell into a river after her legs were smashed by bullets from an automatic weapon that two men sprayed at her cowering group. Her husband, brother and uncle -- all farm workers -- were less fortunate. more ...
109) 10:42 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Race to save Sri Lanka ceasefire
Mine attacks killed two navy sailors and wounded two commandos in northern Sri Lanka on Thursday in the latest in a barrage of violence that is posing the biggest danger yet to the country's four-year-old ceasefire. Meanwhile, police found five headless corpses near the capital, Colombo, and said they were investigating whether the deaths are linked to the recent upsurge in fighting with Tamil rebels.This week's bloodshed, including two days of government air strikes against rebel positions, threatens to wreck a 2002 truce that ended two decades of fighting between the government and rebels seeking a separate state in the north of the island. While both sides in the conflict and the European team overseeing the agreement say the ceasefire still holds, analysts predict that more violence in the coming days could lead to its total collapse.The chief ceasefire monitor, Ulf Henricsson of Sweden, travelled on Thursday to those areas to inspect damage caused by the air strikes and meet with local rebel leaders, spokesperson Helen Olafsdottir said. She gave no further details. more ...
110) 10:41 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Open warfare erupts in Sri Lanka
Truce monitors have travelled to Trincomalee in north-east Sri Lanka to try to ease tension after two days of government air strikes on Tamil rebels. The strikes were called after a suicide bombing on army headquarters in Colombo on Tuesday left at least eight dead and the army chief seriously wounded. The Tamil Tiger rebels called the air strikes "genocidal" and said tens of thousands had fled their homes. The violence has cast serious doubts on the future of the 2002 ceasefire. There have been no new government attacks since the air strikes on Tuesday and Wednesday.
- Sri Lanka strikes stop as island teeters on brink
- Reuters more ...
111) 10:40 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Anti-personnel mines in Sri Lanka kill 2 navy sailors, wound 2 commandos
After weeks of escalating violence in a murky, undeclared war in the North and East of Sri Lanka, the Colombo government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) have resorted to open hostilities. While the immediate trigger was a carefully-planned suicide bombing at army headquarters in central Colombo on Tuesday, the responsibility for the conflict rests squarely with successive Sri Lankan governments which for more than three years have refused to enter into meaningful negotiations. Tuesday’s attack involved a female suicide bomber, dressed as a pregnant woman, who pretended to be visiting the army hospital near the heavily-guarded, high security zone. more ...
112) 04:50 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + 40,000 Tamils 'flee rebel area'
Mine attacks killed two navy sailors and wounded two commandos in northern Sri Lanka on Thursday in the latest in a barrage of violence posing the biggest danger yet to the country's 4-year-old cease-fire. This week's bloodshed, including two days of government air strikes against Tamil rebel positions, threatens to wreck a 2002 truce that ended two decades of fighting between the government and rebels seeking a separate state in the north of the island. While both sides in the conflict and the European team overseeing the agreement say it still holds, analysts predict that more violence in the coming days could lead to its total collapse. more ...
113) 00:35 GMT, Apr. 27, 2006 | + Ground strikes against LTTE possible
Some 40,000 civilians fled homes in northeastern Sri Lanka to escape government airstrikes on Tamil rebel areas in recent days that have killed at least a dozen people, the rebels said Thursday. No new strikes were launched Thursday, the Defense Ministry said, following two days of air attacks near the northeastern port of Trincomalee that constituted the government's biggest military operation since its 2002 cease-fire with Tamil Tiger rebels. The strikes followed a suicide bombing targeting the top Sri Lankan army commander on Tuesday and attacks on navy craft the following day, military officials said, in a spasm of violence that had brought the country perilously close to a return of civil war. more ...
114) 16:39 GMT, Apr. 27, 2005 | + "Support for Next UN Chief Candidacy from Asia should be Maintained"
Even as air strikes continued against the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka, the Sri Lankan High Commissioner to India on Wednesday hinted that ground operations could also be carried out against the Tigers, if necessary. He said his country was keen on procuring arms from India. But until now, there's been no progress on the bilateral defence cooperation agreement. It appears India is dragging its feet given the political implications in Tamil Nadu of selling arms to Sri Lanka, arms that could well be used against Tamils. more ...
115) 15:50 GMT, Apr. 27, 2005 | + Framing the Discourse on Child Soldiers
The momentum of supports for the next United Nations secretary general candidacy from Asia, which were heralded by the participating countries in the recent Asian-African Summit in Jakarta, should be maintained towards a realization, an Indonesia's UN official said here Tuesday.Despite Asian-African countries have expressed a commitment, and informally the post of the next UN chief alternates with the continent, however, Adiyatwidi said it's not certain that the one who would replace Kofi Annan next year from Asia. "The influence from the United States and the developed countries will be extremely great in the election of the next UN chief candidacy," Adiyatwidi said, adding that one of the challenges we have to anticipate was the US' possible support for the candidate from East Europe.Thailand and Sri Lanka have so far wished to nominate their men for the UN secretary general post, while India, Iran and South Korea were also reported to have their own candidates. more ...
116) 12:24 GMT, Apr. 27, 2005 | + Toronto EMS paramedics leave for Sri Lanka
Taken together the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child proclaim the following, among others, as children’s rights: Protection from all forms of mental and physical violence. Right to health care including combating malnutrition Right to education
The Optional Protocol on Children in Armed Conflict prohibits the recruitment of children under the age of 18 by non-state armed groups, but is tolerant of states doing so. Studies on the phenomenon of child soldiers and the social context from which they come have concluded that child soldiers originate in societies where there are serious violations of many of the child rights proclaimed in the UN conventions. more ...
117) 11:46 GMT, Apr. 27, 2005 | + Sri Lanka to send second contingent of 800 soldiers to Haiti for U.N. peacekeeping
The David McAntony Gibson Foundation (DMGF) has entered into an agreement with Mines Advisory Group (MAG) to help train paramedics in Baticoloa and Killinochee, Sri Lanka, over the next three weeks. "I am immensely proud of this group of paramedics, who continue to demonstrate the generosity that Torontonians consistently show to people in need around the world," said Toronto Mayor David Miller. "They are making a huge difference to the lives of victims of the tsunami disaster." After 20 years of civil war, Sri Lanka has a major landmine problem. The countryside remains covered in landmines, but now the situation has worsened because many minefields were affected by the tsunami of December 26, 2004. The tsunami flooded the land and moved mines around, making previously cleared areas newly hazardous for civilians seeking clean water. MAG has deployed additional teams to clear tsunami-disturbed minefields, but the demining crews are in urgent need of emergency medical care as they carry out this dangerous mission. more ...
118) 10:19 GMT, Apr. 27, 2005 | + Military banning essential items is a violation of CFA
Sri Lanka will send 800 soldiers to Haiti as part of its continued commitment to the U.N. peacekeeping efforts there, a military spokesman said Wednesday. The contingent will replace the first one that is completing its six months term, said Brig. Daya Ratnayake. The September deployment was Sri Lanka's first major U.N. peacekeeping assignment. Sri Lanka, a small tropical island of 19 million people, lost two of its soldiers in March when U.N. troops tried to take control of a police station from gunmen in Haiti. Two soldiers were also wounded in the incident. Sri Lanka has about 100,000 soldiers under its armed forces, who have fought Tamil Tiger rebels since 1983. The civil war was halted in 2002 after a cease-fire. more ...
119) 09:45 GMT, Apr. 27, 2005 | + 50 Dead in Sri Lanka's Train Accident
Trincomalee political section head Elilan has made a complaint to the SLMM that the military’s action to ban many essential items passing through their checkpoint in Muthur Kaddaparichchan is a violation of CFA. People living in the Sampoor area under LTTE administration must pass the above checkpoint. Since last week the military has started placing many restrictions to take goods through this checkpoint. Prior to last week, military has placed restriction to take batteries, fuel and building material. Now it is placing restrictions to take even essential items. After the CFA there are no restrictions to moving goods like cement across the country. Elilan has complained that banning cement and other items from passing through the Trincomalee Kaddaiparichchan checkpoint is a CFA violation. more ...
120) 01:33 GMT, Apr. 27, 2005 | + VanniTech Signs MoU with US Consulting Company
An intercity passenger train collided with a bus that tried to dash through a railroad crossing in northwestern Sri Lanka on Wednesday, killing at least 50 people and injuring 40 others, police said. But the local hospital put the death toll at 35. The passenger bus, apparently racing another bus, slipped past a barrier and tried to cross a railroad track at Polgahawela, a small suburban town surrounded by rice and coconut farming villages. The area is about 50 miles northeast of Colombo. The bus was reduced to a mangled heap of metal after it caught fire. There were opened suitcases with passengers' clothes strewn on the track and on the sides. Police at the scene first reported that at least 50 people died when the bus and train collided, while 40 others were injured, 30 of them seriously, police spokesman Rienzie Perera said in Colombo. Some of the seriously wounded were being brought to National Hospital in Colombo, he said. more ...
121) 20:06 GMT, Apr. 27, 2004 | + Tamils Rehabilitation Organization
Vanni Institute of Technology (VanniTech) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Computer Zone Consulting Inc. (CZC), a US based Information Technology consulting company, today, paving the way for the first business outsourcing venture in the North-East. According to the agreement, CZC would initially hire one VanniTech graduate, for its offshore software development needs and explore its business expansion in the future. The employee will be working for CZC but stationed at VanniTech, supervised and guided by TechShack, which is VanniTech’s Employment Incubation Center. TechShack has previously provided technology solutions for CZC, notably a web presence solution for one of its clients from the medical record industry and is currently working on an e-commerce solution for CZC. more ...
122) 20:04 GMT, Apr. 27, 2004 | + Norway Sends Delegation to Help Stalled Sri Lankan Peace Process
Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) was founded by Tamil refugees in India in 1985 and then was moved to the Tamil homeland (Northeast Sri Lanka) in 1987. It is run by a board of governors with offices in all 8 districts of the Northeast as well as an office in Colombo, the country's capital. With units in 14 countries overseas it receives funding from both the local, as well as expatriate, Tamil communities, local and International NGOs, UN Agencies, the World Bank, the Asian Development Fund as well as the Sri Lankan government. TRO has also established a Socio-Economic Development Bank with 5 branches for rural development. TRO was registered as an NGO at the Provincial level under the Voluntary Social Services Act in 1993 and at the National level under a similar (Registration and Supervision) Act on 27th June 2002. It is a member of the Consortium of Humanitarian Agencies (CHA) in Colombo and is a member of National Coordinating Committee of Triple 'R'. more ...
123) 16:58 GMT, Apr. 27, 2004 | + Escapee details 18-year detention, torture in STF camp
Norway's Foreign Ministry says it is sending a delegation to Sri Lanka for talks aimed at reviving the stalled peace process between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels. The Foreign Ministry issued a statement saying the delegation, headed by Deputy Foreign Minister Vidar Helgesen, will meet with President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Sunday and with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam the next day. The statement says Mr. Helgesen will leave Sri Lanka after meeting Mrs. Kumaratunga. Norway's special peace envoy Erik Solheim will lead talks with the head of the rebels' political wing, Sinniah Param Tamilselvan. Norway brokered a ceasefire between the two sides two years ago. The ceasefire ended nearly two decades of fighting that claimed more than 60,000 lives. Tamil Tigers are fighting for a separate Tamil homeland in Sri Lanka's north and east. more ...
124) 10:21 GMT, Apr. 27, 2004 | + Cease Fire violation- Murder of LTTE cadres
A Tamil youth arrested in 1986 by the Special Task Force of the Sri Lanka Army at Kaluwanchikudy in the Batticaloa district, and assumed dead, has escaped last week from an STF camp where he was held incommunicado for 18 years, and has detailed the torture and killings by the STF that took place in the camp and elsewhere to Sri Lanka’s Human Rights Commission and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), sources in Batticaloa told TamilNet. Mr. Kanagaratnam Shanmuganathan, 40, of Murugan Kovilady, Siththandy, in the Batticaloa district was arrested by the STF 18 years ago at the STF checkpoint in Kaluwanchikudy when he was on his way to work in a rice mill in Kalmunai. more ...
125) 10:20 GMT, Apr. 27, 2004 | + EU Monitors Urge Sri Lankan Army, Rebels To Hold Talks
Today, 27th of April mr.Tamilselvan, head of the political wing, has sent a letter to the SLMM head Major General Trond Fruhovde, regarding the murder of LTTE cadres in the Batticaloa district. Following is the extract from the letter. "Please be advised that we consider this incident wherein seven LTTE cadres including 4 disabled members have been killed with scant respect both to humanitarian norms and the CFA as one that merits immediate inquiry and remedial action. We have credible evidence that the attackers came from the Vavunathivu SLA camp direction and escaped after attack in the same direction. The distance from the SLA point and our FDL is only 500 and therefore the logical conclusion is that the attackers could not have passed through the SLA point without being noticed. more ...
126) 10:20 GMT, Apr. 27, 2004 | + Sri Lanka Marxists end standoff with president
European monitors urged the Sri Lankan army and Tamil Tiger rebels Tuesday to hold talks to defuse growing tensions after unidentified gunmen shot and killed seven guerrillas in a daring ambush in the country's East. The Tigers blamed supporters of a renegade rebel commander for the weekend killings in Batticaloa, which is controlled by the government, but dominated in pockets by rebels. The rebels also suggested the army may have been involved - an allegation the military denied. "We have suggested a meeting between the army and the LTT," said Agnes Bragadottir, the spokeswoman for the Norwegian-led Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission, saying that the monitors hoped for a meeting later Tuesday. more ...
127) 12:45 GMT, Apr. 27, 2003 | + Tigers must agree to Indian role: SLMM
Sri Lanka's main Marxist party ended a standoff with President Chandrika Kumaratunga over allocation of portfolios that has triggered instability in the new minority government. The Marxist JVP, or People's Liberation Front, said it accepted a compromise offered by Kumaratunga to end the 16-day cabinet crisis and eight of its legislators will be sworn in Wednesday as ministers and deputies. "The matter has been resolved and our MPs will take their oaths on Wednesday and they will attend that day's cabinet meeting too," a JVP spokesman told AFP on Monday. more ...
128) 12:38 GMT, Apr. 27, 2003 | + Sri Lankan peace broker reshuffled as Tigers suspend peace talks
The monitoring mission was based on the truce agreement, an SLMM spokesman said. "Modifications are not viable without all parties to the agreement reaching consensus on them," he said. The opposition wants at least three more countries including India to join the SLMM to monitor what it described as unlawful LTTE activities at sea. Opposition leaders have repeatedly accused the mission of favouring the LTTE while placing the armed forces at a considerable disadvantage and rendering Tamil political parties like the EPDP vulnerable to Tigers. more ...
129) 12:33 GMT, Apr. 27, 2003 | + India should lift ban on LTTE before joining sea panel: TELO
The Sri Lankan government is set to reorganise its main peace secretariat after Tamil Tiger rebels suspended talks, citing the government's failure to deliver on its promises. The Secretariat for Co-ordinating the Peace Process (SCOPP) will see several changes in its staffing and functions following a directive from Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, the English-language Sunday Leader newspaper said. "According to changes proposed by the prime minister, the Peace Secretariat will be restructured and will handle only political issues while the developmental aspects stemming from the peace process will be dealt with by an apex body to be formed shortly," the report said. more ...
130) 12:28 GMT, Apr. 27, 2003 | + Sri Lanka Bishop Who Aided Rebels Dies
K Srikantha, leader of the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO), has said that India will have to lift the ban on the LTTE if it is to accept the Sri Lankan opposition's demand that it become a ceasefire monitor here. He told Hindustan Times, Sunday that if the opposition was really serious about involving India, it should first ask India to lift the ban on the LTTE, because without lifting the ban, India could not interact with the LTTE. more ...
131) 21:15 GMT, Apr. 27, 2002 | + Interim Council: problems and questions
Bastiampillai Deogupillai, a former bishop of Sri Lanka's troubled northern city of Jaffna, has died. He was 86. Deogupillai, who aided tens of thousands of people during Sri Lanka's 19-year civil war, died in his sleep late Friday, a church official, G.P.E. Selvarajah, said Sunday. TamilNet, a Web site that reports on the affairs of Sri Lanka's ethnic Tamil minority, praised the bishop for supporting them in a 19-year civil war aimed at securing a separate homeland. more ...
132) 20:29 GMT, Apr. 27, 2002 | + Ranil rejects LTTE homeland claim
Though the government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE have made no official pronouncements on the agenda for 'talks on talks' in Thailand between the two parties, the establishment of an interim administrative council (IAC) is expected to figure prominently in them. The IAC, as the name suggests, is not a permanent institution, but created for the purpose of carrying out developmental and administrative work in the northeast till a more permanent structure is evolved through negotiations. The IAC is also an experiment because the LTTE, primarily is a military formation, expressed a desire to enter the political process, but did not contest parliamentary elections. The council is a method whereby the LTTE's demands may be accommodated without getting into legal and administrative tangles. more ...
133) 16:43 GMT, Apr. 27, 2002 | + PM meets prelates
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday assured the Asgiriya and Malwatte prelates that the government rejected in toto the ‘nijabima’ (motherland) claim of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). "Our whole endeavour is to live in a country where peace prevails by sharing power without dividing the country. This island is everybody’s motherland and the 25,000 square miles of the land is everybody’s ‘Nijabima’", Mr. Wickremesinghe said. He said that according to the MoU, the LTTE is not expected to open such offices either in Colombo, the upcountry or anywhere else other than in the districts of the north and east. more ...
134) 11:38 GMT, Apr. 27, 2002 | + Lanka Navy says islands are military areas
The Prime Minister Saturday told the prelates of the Malwatte and Asgiriya Chapters in Kandy that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam cannot open political offices outside the North-east province. "It will be a violation of the cease-fire agreement signed by the government and the LTTE if the latter decided to open its offices in other parts of the country," Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe said in reply to Mahanayake Theras when they questioned him about the news reports that LTTE is to open its office in Wellawatte, Colombo on Monday. more ...
135) 11:28 GMT, Apr. 27, 2002 | + SLMC condemns Ashraff over ‘collaboration’
The Sri Lankan Navy has refused to allow LTTE members to enter a group of islands off the northern Jaffna peninsula for political work, contending that the islands were "military areas". However, its members were not allowed into the islands two weeks ago when they sought entry. The Navy has bases or camps in most of the islands, where the Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP), an anti-LTTE group, has maintained a strong presence for over a decade. more ...
136) 11:26 GMT, Apr. 27, 2002 | + Prabha invites Sinhala people to return
A section of Sri Lanka’s largest Muslim party Friday condemned the leader of a breakaway faction for siding with Sinhala chauvinists by speaking at an anti-peace rally organised to condemn the indefinite ceasefire between the government and the Liberation Tigers, press reports said. The Eravur sections of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) criticised Mrs Farial Ashraff, the widow of its former leader, for siding with Sinhala chauvinists and addressing the event in Colombo in her capacity as leader of the National United Alliance. more ...
137) 12:59 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Sri Lanka President Says No Truce Needed for Talks
LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran has invited the Sinhala families that were displaced from the north and east to return and resettle. "Housing, employment and compensation would have to be provided," the Tiger leader said from Wanni. This is first time that the LTTE leader has made such an invitation to the majority Sinhala people. It is learned that discussions were held recently with officials of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees regarding the resettlement of the Sinhala families. After groundbreaking talks with the Sri Lank Muslim Congress on National New Year's Day , Mr. Prabhakaran personally invited Muslim families who had been forced to leave the North to return and resettle.
| "...We are not enemies of the Sinhala people, nor is our struggle against them. It is because of the oppressive policy of the racist Sinhala politicians that contradictions arose between the Sinhala and Tamil nations, resulting in a war..." REJECT RACIST FORCES: OFFER JUSTICE TO THE TAMILS |
"As far as we are concerned having a cease-fire is irrelevant to the peace process,We are still totally committed to commencing negotiations with the LTTE and working out a solution to the problems which have led to the war. We do not believe it can be solved only through military means,"
138) 12:49 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Vesak should be day of mourning - Eastern students
- President Chandrika.
The Tigers said they declared the truce to push forward the peace process but let it expire because the government's refusal to reciprocate was undermining their military edge. Kumaratunga accused the rebels of creating obstacles to any talks and called for a sincere effort on the part of the LTTE to end the ethnic war that has killed more than 64,000 in nearly two decades of fighting. more ...
139) 12:47 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Death toll in Sri Lanka fighting tops 300
Eastern university undergraduates and teachers demonstrated Friday urging the people of Batticaloa to observe the Buddhist Vesak festival as a day of mourning. Thirteen people, including nine children from an orphanage, were shot dead by Sri Lanka army soldiers in Batticaloa town during the Vesak festival on 17 May last year following a blast. The SLA sought an apology for the massacre from the people of Batticaloa in January this year, blaming a drunken commanding officer for ordering troops to open fire on civilians. Meanwhile, the SLA warned civilians in Batticaloa Friday not to move about near its camps and positions in the district after dark. The army increased search operation in the eastern town this week. more ...
140) 12:40 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Sri Lanka peace hopes bloodied but unbowed
The number of soldiers killed in three days of battles on Jaffna peninsula in the far north of the country had risen to 131 from 110, with more than 600 wounded, the officials added. Military spokesman Brigadier Sanath Karunaratne said he had no new information on the number of rebels killed in the fighting, which continued on Friday afternoon. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) have disputed the figures, saying 300 soldiers have been killed and 1,200 wounded. Rebel radio said 33 guerrillas were killed in the fighting that erupted on Wednesday as government troops made a push for the town of Pallai hours after the Tigers allowed a four-month unilateral ceasefire to expire. "Reconnaissance flights show that the LTTE-held areas are covered in thick, black smoke and have been devastated," he said. more ...
141) 12:37 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Lankan Army death toll touches 110
Sri Lanka's peace hopes appeared to be drowning in blood on Friday as casualties mounted from the worst slaughter in the country's ethnic war since a Norwegian-brokered peace bid began to gather pace six months ago. But diplomats and analysts said they were cautiously optimistic that efforts to bring the government and Tamil Tiger guerrillas to the negotiating table were still on track. more ...
142) 12:35 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Tamil Tigers claim 300 troopers dead
Fierce fighting continued to rage for the third consecutive day in Jaffna peninsula in northern Sri Lanka, as the death toll among Government troops touched 110 and rebels suffered heavy casualties, but admitted only 30 fatalities. The military situation report said one officer and 39 soldiers were killed yesterday alone amidst efforts by the security forces to redraw the forward defence lines ahead of Eluthumadduval, Nagarkand and Muhamalai areas. With this three officers and 107 soldiers have died since April 25. more ...
143) 10:05 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Casualties mount in Sri Lanka
Tamil Tiger guerrillas today admitted losing 33 of their cadres and claimed killing over 300 government troopers in fierce fighting in northern Sri Lanka. The separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) said over their clandestine Voice of Tigers radio that they had captured the bodies of 30 soldiers who were killed in fighting since Wednesday. However, the government said it lost 87 soldiers with another 382 wounded and placed rebel losses at 110 cadres killed and over 300 wounded. The VOT also denied government claims that the air force bombed two buses full of rebel reinforcements sent to the battlefield yesterday. Ferocious fighting raged in the Jaffna peninsula as thousands of government troops tried to break through rebel defences and move towards the LTTE-held Pallai town on Wednesday at the end of a four-month-long truce by the Tigers. more ...
144) 09:56 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Tigers recover 30 SLA bodies -VOT
Three days of heavy clashes between Sri Lankan government forces and the Tamil Tiger rebels have left more than 300 dead. It is the first major outbreak of fighting between the two sides since the Tigers ended a four-month unilateral ceasefire earlier this week. "Troops... ran into minefields and fell prey to accurate artillery and mortar fire by Tamil Tigers," more ...
145) 19:13 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + Sri Lanka bloodbath dashes Norway peace hopes
The Liberation Tigers recovered the bodies of thirty Sri Lanka army soldiers from the battlefield in Jaffna south, the Voice of Tigers said in its morning news broadcast Friday. The radio denied a report by the Special Media Information Centre of the Sri Lankan government that the Sri Lanka Air Force bombed two busloads of its troopers behind the lines on Thursday. The VOT said that heavy fighting was raging in the southern parts of the peninsula for the third day. more ...
146) 00:54 GMT, Apr. 27, 2001 | + 300 Government Troops Killed; 1200 Injured; fighting Continues ...
Ferocious fighting between Sri Lankan troops and Tamil Tiger rebels raged for a third day Friday, raising the death toll to 311 and shattering hopes of early peace talks, officials said. Fighting erupted as soldiers backed by tanks, aircraft and navy gunboats launched a major offensive aimed at wresting territory from Tiger control in the Jaffna peninsula, in the island's north. The defence ministry said at least 131 soldiers were killed and 604 seriously wounded in fighting since Wednesday, and placed rebel losses at 180 dead and over 300 wounded. However, the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) said over their Voice of Tigers radio that they had lost only 33 of their cadres. They claimed over 300 government dead and more than 1,200 troops wounded. more ...
147) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1999 | + Indian political crisis: The comedy of errors
148) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1999 | + “War cannot be stopped”- President
149) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1999 | + Blockade threat to food supplies
150) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1999 | + Tiger hunt: Delhi's changing faces
151) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1998 | + Jha's statement annoys Sinhalese, cheers Tamils
152) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1998 | + Policemen extort money from lodging residents
153) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1998 | + Torture victim attempts suicide
154) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1998 | + Unending Vigil For the Missing-In-Action
155) 11:11 GMT, Apr. 27, 1998 | + India scotches talk of Sri Lanka policy shift
More than 300 Sri Lankan army soldiers were killed and over 1200 injured in the ferocious fighting that continues for the second day in the southern sector of the Jaffna peninsula. The Government troops have suffered massive casualties as the combat formations of the Liberation Tigers offered stiff and determined resistance to the offensive assault launched by the Sri Lankan army. The LTTE's field commanders have confirmed that the strategic objective behind the current offensive operation of the Sri Lankan troops is to advance towards the Elephant Pass base. more ...