Large-scale Sinhala housing project underway in Naavatkuli

[ TamilGuardian ][ Jan 23 20:40 GMT ]

A large scale grant-based Sinhalese settlement will be built on public land in Naavatkuli, Jaffna, despite local opposition. 250 Sinhalese beneficiaries have been chosen to receive houses built on land owned by the National Housing Development Authority in Naavatkuli. After the end of the war, Sinhalese people had settled with temporary buildings in Naavatkuli, and were later granted land permit documents by the Rajapaksa government. The foundation stone for the scheme will be laid by housing minister Sajith Premadasa at the end of the month, and the project is expected to be completed within 6 months. [ full story | comments ]

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Sri Lanka: Refusing to disappear: Tens of thousands missing, families demand answers

As any family member searching for a missing loved one can tell you, e...

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A movement to reclaim Tamil pride

In fighting the ban on the traditional sport, the people found a chan...

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Judge instructs jury to be ‘very cautious’ about eyewitness evidence in Tamil ship case

A British Columbia Supreme Court judge has instructed a jury to be “...

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Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe’s “lack of confidence” in the CTF: Revengeful and racist

[ GV ][ Jan 23 20:44 GMT ]

Justice and Buddhasasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe has declared that he has “no confidence” in the government-appointed Consultation Task Force (CTF) on Reconciliation Mechanisms (Daily Mirror, 07 January 2017, p.1). Minister Rajapakshe’s decision to express his lack of confidence in an important Task Force belatedly (nearly one year after its appointment and many moons of hard work culminating in the public release of its final report on January 03, 2017) is inexplicable to say the least. He may have forgotten that the CTF was appointed by none other than his party leader Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka: Refusing to disappear: Tens of thousands missing, families demand answers

[ ReliefWeb ][ Jan 23 20:38 GMT ]

As any family member searching for a missing loved one can tell you, enforced disappearance is a crime without end. Until parents, wives, siblings, and children know the truth about the fate of a missing family member, they can find it almost impossible to seek justice and reparation for crimes they have suffered, and cannot properly mourn their loss. Enforced Disappearance has touched every community, and within Sri Lanka there has been virtually no accountability for these grievous crimes. With a backlog of between 60,000 and 100,000 alleged enforced disappearances since the late 1980s, there is no shortage of examples of frustrated justice. [ full story | comments ]

A movement to reclaim Tamil pride

[ The Hindu ][ Jan 22 14:56 GMT ]

In fighting the ban on the traditional sport, the people found a channel to express their latent anger against several issues affecting them. As the protesters had a sniff of victory on Saturday night, with the State passing an ordinance to allow the recommencement of jallikattu, the movement to reclaim the sport as the symbol of Tamil pride never looked bigger. But it still surprised everyone by the rather easy way in which people from different walks of life came together for a cause that on the surface seemed so distant from their lives. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka: The Rajapaksas Rise Again

[ Diplomat ][ Jan 19 18:33 GMT ]

Politics is shaped by leaders’ ability to deliver. It is all about doing and achieving, “doing what you say what you say you are going to do,” to paraphrase Dr. Harsha de Silva, Sri Lanka’s current deputy minister of foreign affairs. It is not about good intentions; it is about getting results. It is not about pleasing outsiders; ultimately it is about keeping your own people happy, satisfying their aspirations, reassuring them, protecting them, and advancing their interests. This is the fundamental truth that is beginning to dawn on Sri Lanka’s body politic. [ full story | comments ]

India, Sri Lanka in talks on port

[ Hindu ][ Jan 19 18:29 GMT ]

Sri Lanka is in talks to offer the port of Trincomalee to India. Speaking to The Hindu on the sidelines of the Raisina Dialogue here, Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, Colombo’s Minister of Regional Development, said that the decision on offering the port to India will be taken soon. “Talks are at present going on between India and Sri Lanka and we hope to offer the Trincomalee port, which is one of the best deep sea ports in the world, to India,” said Mr. Fonseka speaking to The Hindu on the sidelines of the Raisina Dialogue. Trincomalee has been on the table for sometime as Sri Lanka wants to maintain a neutral stand and provide equal access to its ports to both China and India. [ full story | comments ]

Thousands protest at India bullfighting ban

[ BBC ][ Jan 18 22:32 GMT ]

Thousands of people in India's southern Tamil Nadu state are protesting against a ban on bullfighting. At least 4,000 people have been camping at Marina beach in the state's capital, Chennai (Madras), since Tuesday night. Traditional bull-taming contests, known as Jallikattu, have been popular for centuries in the state. Protesters say they represent its identity. But the Supreme Court banned it in 2014 after objections from animal rights groups. It upheld the ban in 2016. BBC Tamil reports that similar protests are being organised on Wednesday in other parts of the state. Calls have been made on social media asking people to join the protests. [ full story | comments ]

Toronto housing boom to continue as Vancouver slumps

[ Globe and Mail ][ Jan 18 15:01 GMT ]

Canada’s two largest housing markets are going in different directions, with the Greater Toronto Area poised for another rally in 2017 while the Vancouver region girds for a decline. Royal LePage forecasts the median residential price in the GTA will jump 10 per cent this year while Greater Vancouver will experience an 8.5-per-cent price decrease for various housing types. “People in Toronto think that they live in this outlandishly expensive region, but they don’t realize just how affordable homes are relative to the price of homes in Vancouver. There is a dramatic difference,” said Phil Soper, chief executive officer of the real estate firm. [ full story | comments ]

With drought looming, Sri Lanka tries something new: preparing

[ Reuters ][ Jan 18 14:52 GMT ]

With rainfall in many areas just a third of that last year and many water reservoirs far below normal levels, Sri Lankans have begun holding traditional ceremonies to invoke rain – some with the participation of President Maithripala Sirisena. But this time, national officials are also doing something new to prepare for what many fear could be the worst drought in decades: Developing plans, in advance, to deal with it. Those include everything from allowing communities to take only drinking water from drying reservoirs to removing taxes on imported rice and looking for alternatives to hydropower to maintain the national electric grid. [ full story | comments ]

Federal Court upholds deportation of Tamil Tigers fundraiser who has fought to stay in Canada for 22 years

[ National Post ][ Jan 17 17:34 GMT ]

An alleged fundraiser for Tamil rebels who has been fighting deportation from Canada for more than two decades has lost a key court battle after a federal judge dismissed his appeal. The Federal Court upheld the deportation of Manickavasagam Suresh on the grounds he was a member of a terrorist organization and that he was complicit in war crimes and crimes against humanity. The evidence “adequately supported” the Immigration and Refugee Board’s finding that Suresh was a member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, or LTTE, Justice Richard Mosley wrote in his ruling. [ full story | comments ]

2016 was a record-setting year for Canada’s housing market

[ Globe and Mail ][ Jan 17 16:20 GMT ]

Canada’s real estate market will have a hard act to follow after a record-setting 2016 for prices and sales. The average price for various housing types sold nationally for all of 2016 reached a new yearly high of $490,495, up 10.7 per cent from 2015, though there were stark differences within the country, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) said Monday. Nationally, a record 536,118 residential properties changed hands last year on the multiple listing service, a 6.3-per-cent increase from 2015. [ full story | comments ]

A storm in that ‘human rights action plan’ teacup

[ Sunday Times ][ Jan 23 20:43 GMT ]

An unseemly and wholly unnecessary uproar arose this week over a proposed clause in Sri Lanka’s National Human Rights Action Plan (NHRAP, 2017-2021), which had apparently mentioned the need for a two-thirds majority in Parliament to pass a State of Emergency. Ministers loyal to President Maithripala Sirisena indulged in a frantic thumping of chests by insisting that the President had steadfastly ‘intervened’ to remove that clause from the NHRAP. Indeed unwitting observers might have been forgiven for mistaking the innocuous NHRAP for a document that had actual force in law. This was aggravated moreover by reports that the proposal had been ‘rescinded’ by the President. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka hit by worst drought in decades

[ Al Jazeera ][ Jan 22 14:57 GMT ]

Sri Lanka is suffering its worst drought in four decades, according to officials, with more than a million people experiencing acute water shortages. The lack of rain last year has lowered water levels in rivers in parts of the country. With less water available to drain the sea salt, supplies have been contaminated, especially in the town of Kalutara, south of the capital, Colombo. In the village of Kaluganga, more than 200,000 people are affected, as they lack access to clean drinking water. [ full story | comments ]

No Global Trade War Despite Rising Tensions: Sri Lanka Premier

[ Bloomberg ][ Jan 19 18:35 GMT ]

Tensions between the U.S. and China are unlikely to escalate into a global trade war, even as geopolitical friction intensifies across Asia, Sri Lanka’s prime minister said. Ranil Wickremesinghe said President-elect Donald Trump’s election pledge to bring back jobs and revive U.S. manufacturing has more to do with Mexico than with China. "I can’t see a major trade war," Wickremesinghe said in an interview with Bloomberg on Tuesday at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. "Modern China is partly a creation of the U.S. And these are interdependent economies. So what do you do?" [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka Braces for Trouble Ahead

[ Stratfor ][ Jan 19 18:30 GMT ]

This year will bring more political infighting in Sri Lanka as former President Mahinda Rajapaksa tries to stir discontent ahead of local elections and constitutional reform. The disarray will continue to cause headaches for China, which invested in strategic and lucrative development projects in the country at a more placid time. Tamil nationalism will further complicate matters as nostalgia for the defunct Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam insurgency inreases among members of the ethnic minority. [ full story | comments ]

Book Review: Road to Nandikadal: True story of defeating Tamil Tigers, Colombo, 2016.- Major General Kamal Gunaratne

[ SAAG ][ Jan 19 16:22 GMT ]

As readers well know, the word “prejudice” comes from to pre-judge; to judge or form an opinion without first independently examining the evidence. Going by what I had read about this book, I confess I was prejudiced but, having gone through it, my former opinion was confirmed. “Pre-judice” became “post-judice”, an instance of postjudice confirming prejudice. (Or is the latter – consciously or subconsciously - conditioning the former? After all, as Heidegger noted, even objectivity is judged by a subjective self.) To express it bluntly, I think this on several counts is a very poorly produced work. [ full story | comments ]

Judge instructs jury to be ‘very cautious’ about eyewitness evidence in Tamil ship case

[ Toronto Star ][ Jan 18 15:04 GMT ]

A British Columbia Supreme Court judge has instructed a jury to be “very cautious” about relying on eyewitness evidence to find guilt in the case of four men accused of smuggling hundreds of Tamil migrants to Canada. Justice William Ehrcke noted that the jury had heard evidence from witnesses that on more than one occasion, they were shown photographs by the RCMP and Canada Border Services Agency and asked if they could identify anyone pictured. [ full story | comments ]

Listen To Justin Trudeau Speak Tamil To Celebrate Canada’s Diversity

[ Huffington Post ][ Jan 18 14:55 GMT ]

On the same day President-elect Donald Trump criticized civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis and the diverse district he represents, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was celebrating his country’s diversity across the border in Canada. Trudeau sent holiday greetings on Saturday to people of Tamil heritage around the world observing Thai Pongal, a Hindu harvest festival that originated in southern India. “We should seize every opportunity to celebrate the many cultures, languages and beliefs that make our country such a wonderful place to live,” Trudeau said in a video posted to Twitter on Jan. 14. [ full story | comments ]

Stouffville's growing Tamil community celebrating Thai Pongal

[ Stouffville Sun-Tribune ][ Jan 18 14:50 GMT ]

There are “over 2,000” Tamil Canadians living in Whitchurch-Stouffville. All of them are celebrating Thai Pongal, a Tamil holiday that celebrates the new year in the Tamil calendar and serves as a harvest festival. Considering the town’s population is approximately 46,600, Tamils would constitute a significant minority. In fact, last year the town agreed to have January known as Tamil Heritage Month. As part of Tamil Heritage Month, Stouffville is having its own Thai Pongal celebration. Thai Pongal landed on Jan. 14 in 2017. [ full story | comments ]

Why today might be the best day to buy a Toronto-area house

[ Toronto Star ][ Jan 17 17:16 GMT ]

The choice of homes may be limited in the dead of winter, but consumers waiting for the hot spring market should know that January actually provides the best chance for snagging a bargain. Seven years of sales data on about 650,000 Toronto-area transactions, shows Tuesday is probably the day this year when buyers will pay the least for a home, according to an analysis by TheRedPin real estate brokerage. That's because there is residual inventory — homes that didn't sell in October and November, sometimes because they were over-priced, said Tarik Gidamy, co-founder and broker of record with TheRedPin. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka taking steps to deal with troubled past: Foreign Minister

[ LBO ][ Jan 17 00:19 GMT ]

Sri Lanka will deal with her troubled past honestly and truthfully, Foreign Minister Managala Samaraweera said, speaking at the Chatham House in London last week. Sri Lanka is committed to the co-sponsored resolution worked out with the Human Rights Council in October 2015 to “deal with the past honestly and truthfully, accept that past, put it behind us, and then move forward to build our Sri Lankan nation anew,” he said. Samaraweera made these comments at The Royal Institute of International Affairs, also called Chatham House. [ full story | comments ]


>> News Archives

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Featured News

[ReliefWeb - Jan 23, 2017 20:38:12 GMT]

Sri Lanka: Refusing to disappear: Tens of thousands missing, families demand answers


[The Hindu - Jan 22, 2017 14:56:15 GMT]

A movement to reclaim Tamil pride


[Toronto Star - Jan 18, 2017 15:04:13 GMT]

Judge instructs jury to be ‘very cautious’ about eyewitness evidence in Tamil ship case


[Globe and Mail - Jan 18, 2017 15:01:30 GMT]

Toronto housing boom to continue as Vancouver slumps


[Stouffville Sun-Tribune - Jan 18, 2017 14:50:31 GMT]

Stouffville's growing Tamil community celebrating Thai Pongal


[National Post - Jan 17, 2017 17:34:00 GMT]

Federal Court upholds deportation of Tamil Tigers fundraiser who has fought to stay in Canada for 22 years


[Toronto Star - Jan 17, 2017 17:16:44 GMT]

Why today might be the best day to buy a Toronto-area house


[Globe and Mail - Jan 17, 2017 16:20:20 GMT]

2016 was a record-setting year for Canada’s housing market


[Reuters - Jan 06, 2017 17:50:48 GMT]

Sri Lanka divided as panel backs foreign judges to probe war crimes


[PTI - Nov 14, 2016 11:21:15 GMT]

UN probe sought on torture by Sri Lankan security forces


[HRW - Nov 07, 2016 13:52:48 GMT]

Sri Lankan Police Shooting of Two Students More of the Same


[Guardian - Oct 04, 2016 12:44:20 GMT]

'Whatever the army saw, they destroyed': looting and loss in Sri Lanka's civil war - Commodore Ajith Boyagoda


[Asian Correspondent - Sep 30, 2016 18:06:48 GMT]

JS Tissainayagam: Tamils resort to nationalism to shore up eroding political base


[JDS - Sep 22, 2016 13:48:31 GMT]

TNA’s Sumanthiran says didn’t consult victims on OMP Bill


[The Wire - Sep 13, 2016 12:48:57 GMT]

UN Chief’s Visit to Sri Lanka Does Little to Address Struggles of Those Awaiting Justice