British lawmakers urge EU to stop Sri Lanka trade perks if UN probe not given access

[ Reuters ][ Nov 27 13:40 GMT ]

Leading British lawmakers urged the European Union on Thursday to remove preferential trade tariffs from Sri Lanka if it fails to address human rights concerns. "Our government must negotiate with EU partners to remove trade concessions from Sri Lanka if the government of Sri Lanka continues to deny the U.N. investigating team access into the country," Richard Ottaway, a Conservative lawmaker and chairman of parliament's foreign affairs committee, said in a statement accompanying a report on the government's work on human rights. [ full story | comments ]

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Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice Claims that sri lanka tourism covers for military takeover

Re-launching their #ThinkAgain Ethical Tourism Campaign today, the Sri...

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Winter of 2014 will be a rerun of 2013, forecaster says

The prevailing weather conditions of last winter will be more or less ...

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Sri Lanka's Rajapaksa wins 2015 budget vote despite defections

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is facing a split in his r...

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Ex-minister to pose 'serious challenge' to Sri Lankan President

[ DW ][ Nov 27 13:47 GMT ]

Although the president still has wide public support, internal tensions within the ruling party have seen backing for his leadership decline. There have also been allegations President Rajapaksa has used his position to give friends and family members jobs in high-ranking government and bureaucratic institutions. Sirisena is a person who can rally votes not only from the opposition but also from segments within the ruling coalition. He has a broad partnership with governmental leaders.Among the voters, the former health minister is viewed as an honest guy and is considered a big name - many voters already know who he is and what he has done. He's a type of candidate that can rally voters and gain support. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka kicks off summit with South, East Asian defense chiefs

[ Xinhua ][ Nov 27 13:42 GMT ]

Defense chiefs of the South and Southeast Asian Nations (SASEAN) will gather in Sri Lanka's capital city of Colombo on Thursday to discuss regional peace and security at a two-day conference, a statement said.Defense chiefs of the eight SAARC and 10 ASEAN member nations will attend the event, and high ranking defense officials from China and Russia are also expected to participate as observers. Sri Lanka over the past few years has stepped up dialogues with regional parties with yearly conferences that aim at improving security, especially after the forces were instrumental in ending a three decade war with the Liberation Tamil Tigers of Eelam (LTTE) in 2009. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice Claims that sri lanka tourism covers for military takeover

[ TravelMole ][ Nov 26 14:07 GMT ]

Re-launching their #ThinkAgain Ethical Tourism Campaign today, the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice have claimed that tourism to Sri Lanka is being used as cover for the military's takeover of civilian life in Sri Lanka. The launch coincides with the conclusion of TBCAsia, an international Travel bloggers conference, which is taking place in Colombo. [ full story | comments ]

UN Special Rapporteur on minority issues criticises BBS for preaching 'racial superiority'

[ Tamil Guardian ][ Nov 26 14:00 GMT ]

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on minority issues Rita Izsak criticised Sri Lankan Buddhist organisation Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) in a report released ahead of the seventh session of the Forum on Minority Issues, which is currently underway in Geneva. In the report, the Special Rapporteur stated that she considers “violence against minorities must constitute a high priority for States, regional bodies and the international community, as well as civil society”. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka monitors urge end to election violence

[ Gulf Times ][ Nov 26 13:48 GMT ]

Sri Lanka’s elections chief and pro-democracy activists yesterday urged police to stem a spate of campaign-related violence that has flared since President Mahinda Rajapakse declared his re-election bid.“I have asked police about these incidents, I have told them to take action against offenders,” Deshapriya said. “I seek the cooperation of political parties to ensure a trouble-free election. “It is also the responsibility of candidates to restraint their supporters.” Deshapriya said he was hoping to invite Commonwealth, European and Asian observers to monitor the election campaign. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka tilts to Beijing

[ East Asia Forum ][ Nov 26 13:42 GMT ]

A sea change is occurring in Sri Lanka’s strategic orientation. Recent developments suggest that Sri Lanka is becoming China’s new best friend and security partner in the eastern Indian Ocean. This would represent a major change in Sri Lanka’s foreign policy and could have significant consequences for regional security.How will India respond to these developments? Delhi has expressed anger at these visits in the strongest terms and has told the Rajapaska government that they are ‘unacceptable to India’. But despite strong trade and defence links, including considerable training for Sri Lanka’s military, India’s options are relatively limited. [ full story | comments ]

Freed fishermen: Modi not beholden to Sri Lanka-Tamil issue

[ MC ][ Nov 26 13:36 GMT ]

An odd thing has happened in Tamil Nadu politics. The Narendra Modi intervention, which got Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse to free five fishermen sentenced to death in a drug trafficking case, has forced all Tamil political parties on the backfoot. While many of them have been trying to claim credit for something they could never have done themselves, Modi is getting back-handed praise for quietly getting them released. He has effectively shown them up for what they are: windbags who are part of the problem, not the solution, to the issue of Sri Lankan Tamils. [ full story | comments ]

MDMK leader Vaiko celebrates LTTE founder Prabhakaran's birthday

[ India Today ][ Nov 26 13:33 GMT ]

MDMK leader Vaiko on Wednesday celebrated the 60th birth anniversary of the slain Tamil Tigers leader Velupillai Prabhakaran. Vaiko urged people to burst crackers and offer special prayers to mark the occasion. "The celebrations should take place wherever Tamils live around the world," he said in a statement. It should "echo the cause of Tamil Eelam", he said. Prabhakaran was born into a middle class family in the coastal town of Velvettiturai in Jaffna peninsula on the northern tip of Sri Lanka. [ full story | comments ]

UNP won’t allow war crimes charges against Govt. leaders: Harsha

[ Daily Mirror ][ Nov 25 16:07 GMT ]

The United National Party (UNP) said today it would not allow government leaders to be hauled up before any international war crimes tribunal. UNP MP Harsha De Silva told Parliament that the UNP was committed to protect the security forces that freed the country from the scourge of terrorism. "We are fearless to tell it in public. We will not allow any government leader to be tried before war crime tribunals," he said. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka signs a MOU with China

[ LBO ][ Nov 25 15:33 GMT ]

Sri Lanka export developmwnt board signs a memorandam of understanding (MOU) with China Council for the Promotion of International Trade of Guangdong (CCPIT-Guangdon) to pave the way for both countries to share information and promote businesses, a media release said. “Today’s MOU aims to exchange market information and relevant publications, exchange of official visits between two countries and support to participate at trade exhibitions and other trade events with the overall objective of developing trade between two countries.” Yousuf Maraikkar, Executive Director of Export Development Board said. [ full story | comments ]

Alstom T&D bags order worth Rs 560 mn

[ IRIS ][ Nov 27 13:45 GMT ]

Alstom T&D India has bagged an order worth euro 7 million (Rs 560 million) from Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) to monitor and control Sri Lanka's electricity transmission network. Alstom will supply its world-leading energy management system, e-terraplatform, to enable reliable, secure and efficient operation of Sri Lanka's hydro-thermal electricity system. Under the project, Alstom will build in Colombo a new control centre-the National System control Centre, equipped with supervisory control, data acquisition, and energy management system. It will install and integrate 34 Remote Terminal Units (RTU) with the new system and integrate existing substation automation. Equipment will be manufactured from Alstom's Noida manufacturing facilities in India. [ full story | comments ]

I was the mastermind behind making Maithripala the common candidate

[ Daily Mirror ][ Nov 26 14:18 GMT ]

No, we are not completely abolishing the presidency. The 19th Amendment is such that in a situation where national security, integrity or unity is threatened, the President does have some responsibility and the power to take action...."We will not let anyone take Mahinda Rajapaksa to international war crimes courts or let any international forces harm him. We will defend him, stand by him and support him." "I was the one who approached Mr. Sirisena and suggested to Mr. Ranil Wickremasinghe that Mr. Sirisena would be the suitable candidate to lead the common opposition. " [ full story | comments ]

Lessons From Lanka: Is Military Intervention the Answer?

[ Globalist ][ Nov 26 14:03 GMT ]

The Sri Lankan government is anything but angelic. Mahinda Rajapaksa has been accused of running a mafia state since his victory in the civil war, imprisoning political rivals and ensuring transactions run through his office. In many ways, he might be just another Assad, albeit with less publicity. Still, the lesson from the Sri Lankan Civil War is that rushing in to arm militias or throwing boots on the ground is not the best way to shore up a region, but the quickest and most effective route to chaos. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka opposition candidate offers to bring about ‘peaceful constitutional revolution’

[ AFP ][ Nov 26 13:52 GMT ]

“I am inviting my former colleagues and all parties represented in the current parliament to join a national government,” Sirisena said after his first visit to the opposition United National Party (UNP) headquarters in the capital. Sirisena said he wanted to bring about a peaceful constitutional revolution, citing India’s independence icon Mahatma Gandhi and South Africa’s anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela as his inspirations.“I am a poor farmer’s son, I am not rich... but I am an admirer of both Gandhi and Mandela and will follow their example in leading the country to establish a new political culture,” he said. [ full story | comments ]

Umno signs MoU with North Korea and Sri Lanka in fostering closer relations

[ Sun Daily ][ Nov 26 13:47 GMT ]

Umno today signed two memoranda of understanding to foster closer relationships with North Korean and Sri Lankan political parties here today. Its Secretary-General Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor signed the MoUs on behalf of Umno with Workers' Party of North Korea (WPK) and Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) on the sidelines of the Umno General Assembly 2014 here today. WPK was represented by its deputy head Pak Kun Gwang and SLMC by its Secretary General M. T. Hasen Ali. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka’s Catholic Church urges government not to use pope’s visit to help election campaign

[ Reuters ][ Nov 26 13:40 GMT ]

Sri Lanka’s Catholic Church has urged the government not to use a forthcoming visit by Pope Francis to help its re-election campaign after media reported posters had appeared depicting the pontiff blessing President Mahinda Rajapaksa.“It has been brought to our notice that the political posters and cut-outs with the picture of the Holy Father have appeared in some places in the country,” the committee of the Sri Lankan Catholic Church that is preparing for the papal visit said in a statement. “We earnestly request respective authorities and persons to remove those political posters and cut-outs immediately and urge all the political groups to refrain from using either the Holy Father or His visit to Sri Lanka for the political campaign of the presidential election.” [ full story | comments ]

Four arrested in Tamil Nadu for trying to smuggle 250kg of ganja to Sri Lanka

[ ToI ][ Nov 26 13:34 GMT ]

The Q Branch of the Tamil Nadu police arrested four men in Ramanathapuram district for trying to smuggle 250kg of ganja to Sri Lanka through sea route in the wee hours of Tuesday. Q Branch sleuths seized the contraband and the vehicles used for the purpose. However, three others managed to escape. Q Branch officials received a tip-off that ganja was smuggled to Sri Lanka from Keelakarai area in the district and intensified patrolling in the coastal areas. [ full story | comments ]

Winter of 2014 will be a rerun of 2013, forecaster says

[ Globe and Mail ][ Nov 26 03:45 GMT ]

The prevailing weather conditions of last winter will be more or less the same across the country this winter, according to the Weather Network’s chief meteorologist Chris Scott. For Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Manitoba, the winter outlook calls for below-average temperatures and near-normal precipitation for most regions. Western Saskatchewan, Alberta and the other Atlantic provinces should brace for wildly swinging temperatures that average out to near seasonal norms, he said. In British Columbia and the North, 2013 winter weather patterns are expected to repeat, which means those regions can expect warmer than normal conditions for the next few months. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka not to invite UN monitors for presidential polls

[ IANS ][ Nov 25 15:36 GMT ]

Sri Lanka on Tuesday said it will invite foreign monitors to witness the presidential election in January. Election Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya said he would, however, not invite U.N. election monitors, Xinhua reported. He told reporters that U.N. monitors play a role only if an election is being held for the first time or if there were serious concerns over the electoral process. Mr. Dishapriya said that usually election monitors from Asia, the European Union and the Commonwealth were invited to see a major election. The January 8 election will be mainly a contest between President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his former Minister Maithripala Sirisena. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka Catholics, monitor condemn use of pope's image on election posters

[ UCAN News ][ Nov 25 14:52 GMT ]

An election monitoring body and Catholic leaders in Sri Lanka have condemned the use of Pope Francis’ image on campaign posters featuring President Mahinda Rajapaksa and called for their removal from public spaces. “The president has already used the Pope’s image for his election campaign and there are posters in public places in Colombo,” said Rohana Hettiarachchi, executive director of the People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL). The posters, which feature the pope and Rajapaksa, have been placed in multiple locations around Colombo since last week, though it is not known who is responsible for distributing them. [ full story | comments ]


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[TravelMole - Nov 26, 2014 14:07:31 GMT]

Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice Claims that sri lanka tourism covers for military takeover


[Globe and Mail - Nov 26, 2014 3:45:16 GMT]

Winter of 2014 will be a rerun of 2013, forecaster says


[Reuters - Nov 24, 2014 17:13:17 GMT]

Sri Lanka's Rajapaksa wins 2015 budget vote despite defections


[PTI - Nov 24, 2014 13:41:43 GMT]

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