Canada pulls funding for Commonwealth in flap over Sri Lanka

[ Golbe And Mail ][ Apr 15 13:28 GMT ]

“This decision was not taken lightly,” Mr. Baird said in a statement on Monday. “We can no longer justify providing additional funding to an organization that turns a blind eye to human rights abuses, anti-democratic behaviour and religious intolerance in its member states.” [ full story | comments ]

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Controversial MP trip to Sri Lanka cancelled at 11th hour [ more ]

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Canada pulls funding for Commonwealth in flap over Sri Lanka

“This decision was not taken lightly,” Mr. Baird said in a stateme...

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Unclear path for Sri Lankan war probe

“I think right now there is still room for a robust national inquiry...

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Sri Lanka: Reconciliation After War

What is certainly missing in much of the political discourse surroundi...

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Sex assault trial hears woman testifies to memory loss, feeling of paralysis

[ Toronto Star ][ Apr 16 12:59 GMT ]

The woman, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, is testifying as part of a similar fact application by the Crown in the judge-alone trial of two doctors accused of drugging and sexually assaulting a medical student together in a downtown Toronto hotel room. Both men have pleaded not guilty. Superior Court Justice Julie Thorburn will rule whether the woman’s testimony can be used to rule out coincidence in the Crown’s case against one of the men, Dr. Suganthan Kayilasanathan, 36. [ full story | comments ]

The not-so-subtle art of Tamil slogan writing

[ Rediff ][ Apr 15 15:42 GMT ]

If you thought you knew all about sloganeering, maybe you should take a trip to Tamil Nadu. Politicians in the southern Indian state have perfected the art of using catchy idioms and phrases to capture the public imagination, says David Gabri The ruling All India Anna Dravida Munetra Kazhagam in Tamil Nadu has launched its campaign with the slogan of peace, prosperity and progress. After tasting success in the state, party workers have been told to promote their leader at the national level. All their slogans are aimed at getting into national politics. One slogan plastered all over the state currently says, 'Any CM can do good things, but only Amma [chief minister and AIADMK leader J Jayalalithaa] can do God things.' [ full story | comments ]

Suspect in custody after Calgary stabbing leaves five dead

[ Globe and Mail ][ Apr 15 15:37 GMT ]

Five young people are dead in Calgary after a stabbing at a late-night house party. The five victims, four men and a woman, and a male suspect, who was arrested by police canine unit, were all in their late teens or early 20s. Police were called to a house party around 1:20 a.m. Tuesday, said spokeswoman Emma Poole. [ full story | comments ]

Unclear path for Sri Lankan war probe

[ IRIN ][ Apr 15 13:20 GMT ]

“I think right now there is still room for a robust national inquiry that meets international standards,” Jehan Perera, director of the National Peace Council (NPC), a Colombo-based advocacy group, told IRIN. “Let me make it very clear - domestic incentives for change are close to nothing,” Kumaravadivel Guruparan, a lecturer at the Faculty of Law at Jaffna University, countered, arguing that international pressure had built up precisely because local mechanisms had failed. [ full story | comments ]

Canada suspends $10-million contribution to the Commonwealth Secretariat over alleged human rights abuses in Sri Lanka

[ National Post ][ Apr 15 03:41 GMT ]

Canada is suspending its $10-million contribution to the Commonwealth Secretariat over the alleged human rights abuses in Sri Lanka, which currently chairs the 53-nation alliance, Foreign Minister John Baird said Monday. Mr. Baird said Ottawa could no longer justify funding “an organization that turns a blind eye to human rights abuses, anti-democratic behavior and religious intolerance in its member states.” The money will be directed elsewhere, he said. [ full story | comments ]

Lanka war zone grave an ordinary cemetery

[ Khaleej Times ][ Apr 14 21:06 GMT ]

A grave site with over 60 bodies in the former war zone, suspected to be a mass grave, is just a normal cemetery, said the Sri Lankan Archeology Department. Road workers laying down pipelines last December stumbled upon the grave at Thiruketheeswaram in Mannar, a former war zone that was 
under the control of the Tamil Tiger rebels for 15 years. The discovery sparked speculations that the grave site was a mass grave containing bodies of Tamil civilians who disappeared during the country’s war between the government forces and the Tamil Tigers. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka - UN Inquiry Just the Start of a Long Road to Justice

[ Huffington Post ][ Apr 14 14:48 GMT ]

Sri Lankan human rights activists campaigned hard for an independent international commission of inquiry into war crimes during the end of the conflict in 2009. Last month members of the UN Human Rights Council did finally vote to set up an inquiry. To many governments it looks as if the issue of accountability is now being dealt with by the UN and they can put their minds at rest and move on. That couldn't be more wrong. The UN inquiry is just the start - not the end - of a long process of justice. It would be disastrous if the world stopped paying attention now. [ full story | comments ]

Jaffna shakes off scars of war

[ BBC ][ Apr 14 05:27 GMT ]

Politically, Sri Lanka is under fire from the international community over its human rights record. But one of the government's responses is that it's fostering economic development in the north of the island, formerly a war zone. The BBC's Charles Haviland has been to Jaffna to see how a shopping centre is helping transform the once war-torn city - and observes the city's first-ever traffic light in operation. [ full story | comments ]

MPs pull out of Sri Lanka trip over UN inquiry

[ Sunderland Echo ][ Apr 14 05:26 GMT ]

MP Sharon Hodgson has spoken about her decision to withdraw from a controversial trip to Sri Lanka. The representative for Washington and Sunderland West was due to travel to the country on an all-costs-covered visit, supported by the Foundation of Goodness, founded by cricketer Muttiah Muralitharan. The bowler is an ethnic Tamil and has come under fire for his support of the Sri Lankan Government, which last week said it would refuse to co-operate with a United Nations inquiry into alleged war crimes and continued human rights abuse. [ full story | comments ]

Britain lists Sri Lanka as ‘country of concern’

[ Sunday Times ][ Apr 14 05:24 GMT ]

Britain has listed Sri Lanka as a ” country of concern” in its 2013 annual human rights report, released recently after it co-sponsored a US-backed resolution against the country at the UNHRC. The British foreign office’s 2013 annual report has noted that the human rights situation in Sri Lanka was of serious concern. Britain was one of the co-sponsors of the US-backed resolution passed last month at the UN Human Rights Council on Sri Lanka’s human rights accountability and reconciliation. [ full story | comments ]

The ‘Mad Monk’ Phenomenon: BBS as the underside of Sinhala-Buddhism

[ Groundviews ][ Apr 15 15:48 GMT ]

The marauding Buddhist monks, who appear to be tied to a long political leash, have run out of control. They need to be stopped. But it is equally necessary to take a cold look at the complexity of the phenomenon that groups such as Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) have come to represent. This is no freak show, and is hardly an aberration in post-war Sri Lanka; also because we know now that critics such as Ven. Dambara Amila (JVP) who predicted that the BBS was bound to dissipate in a matter of months were hopelessly wrong. [ full story | comments ]

A soft account of the Rajiv Gandhi era

[ The Hindu ][ Apr 15 15:40 GMT ]

When you look at the Rajiv Gandhi era the first impression you get is that here was a reluctant entrant into politics who was forced to take the reins of power upon the assassination of his mother and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, who was in a hurry to find a quick fix to complex problems like Punjab, Assam and Sri Lanka, ushered in a technological revolution, brought in far-reaching changes in the polity by enacting laws to ban defection and by introducing the panchayat raj system, took early steps to liberalise the licence-permit raj and wanted to take India into the 21 century, but did not live to see it. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka to provide counselling to kin of war missing

[ PTI ][ Apr 15 15:33 GMT ]

A Sri Lankan government-appointed panel probing the cases of thousands of missing people during the nearly three-decade-long war with the LTTE will provide counselling to the kin of those disappeared, an official said Tuesday. HW Gunadasa, Secretary to the Presidential Commission inquiring into cases of alleged disappearances in the north and eastern provinces, said the Commission was working with the health authorities. "We have learnt from the Commission's sittings held in north and east that some families had suffered multiple disappearances. They have as a result suffered much mental stress. The Commission therefore decided to have a strategy to tackle the issue," Gunadasa said. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka: Reconciliation After War

[ Platform ][ Apr 15 13:18 GMT ]

What is certainly missing in much of the political discourse surrounding the Sri Lankan problem is how and in what ways the country and its extremely divided communities can move towards reconciliation and healing. Indeed, what we have seen in the post-war years has only been further levels of inter-communal estrangement and aggression. There has been little sustained dialogue as to how healing will occur, or what needs to be in place in terms of formal apologies, witness statements or reparations, actions from religious leaders and so on, before the country can reconcile itself. [ full story | comments ]

Canada Suspends Voluntary Commonwealth Funds

[ Government of Canada ][ Apr 14 23:46 GMT ]

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today announced that Canada will suspend its voluntary contribution to the Commonwealth Secretariat and reallocate the funds for the next two years. “As host of the 2013 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting and current Chair in Office, Sri Lanka has a duty to take meaningful action on human rights, political reconciliation and accountability. However, Sri Lanka has failed to realize progress on any of these issues,” said Baird. “Under the leadership of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Canada took a strong and principled stand in not attending the 2013 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Colombo, and today’s announcement is an extension of that leadership. [ full story | comments ]

Hugo Swire MP: A Commonwealth for the 21st Century

[ Conservative Home ][ Apr 14 19:13 GMT ]

With a hundred days to go until this summer’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, it is a good time to reflect on the great network that these Games celebrate – a network whose membership now stands at 53 countries, representing a third of the world’s population... Let us take values first. The Commonwealth Charter, agreed in 2012, is historic: the first ever declaration of our common values in a single document. But, frankly, implementation is patchy. We have real concerns in Sri Lanka, the Commonwealth’s Chair in Office, where there has been very little progress in investigating the terrible atrocities in the civil war that ended five years ago. The Prime Minister has shown great leadership in securing an international inquiry into this through the UN Human Rights Council. [ full story | comments ]

Inducing fear

[ Tamil Guardian ][ Apr 14 14:44 GMT ]

The killings of three Tamil men last week, who the Sri Lankan military claims were attempting to revive the LTTE, was intended to terrorise the Tamil population. The culmination of weeks of heightened military presence in the North-East, mass arrests, interrogations and widespread house to house search operations, the killings serve as a collective warning and reminder to the Tamil people of the state's response, capability and preparedness to curtail Tamil resistance. As public executions do else where, the killings seek to enforce control through violence and fear. Under the guise of counter terrorism measures, the Sri Lankan state is terrorising the Tamil population, on a scale not seen since the end of the armed conflict. [ full story | comments ]

Lankan Tamils Issue Sure To Influence Poll Charts in TN: Seeman

[ Indian Express ][ Apr 14 05:26 GMT ]

Chief Minister and AIADMK general secretary J Jayalalithaa alone can take up the Eelam issue in Parliament and find a solution to the miseries of Lankan Tamils, said Naam Thamizhar Katchi founder Seeman. Dismissing the argument that the Eelam Tamil issue would not influence the election results, Seeman, who has been touring the Southern districts campaigning for All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) candidates, said that the issue was still afresh in the minds of Tamils across the State. “Wherever I had been to in the last 10 days, people expressed their concern for the Tamils suffering in Sri Lanka,” Seeman told Express on the sidelines of a campaign meeting at Sivaganga. [ full story | comments ]

Interpol on Lookout for LTTE Operative Hiding in France

[ Indian Express ][ Apr 14 05:25 GMT ]

Interpol is on the lookout for France-based Tamil Tiger leader Vinayagamoorthy alias Vinayagam, at the request of the Sri Lankan government, Lankan police spokesman, Ajith Rohana, told Express here on Sunday. Vinayagam and Norway-based Nediyavan are wanted by the Lankan authorities for attempting to revive a separatist armed struggle in North Lanka. According to Lankan Military spokesman, Brig Ruwan Wanigsooriya, the duo had been operating in North Lanka through local operatives Gopi, Theivihan and Appan. But these three were shot dead by Lankan troops last week in an encounter in Padaviya, North East Lanka. [ full story | comments ]

'Sri Lanka has no faith in international probe'

[ IANS ][ Apr 13 02:22 GMT ]

The Sri Lankan government Saturday said it has no faith in an international investigation into the alleged human rights abuses occurred during the civil war in the country. President Mahinda Rajapaksa's special envoy on human rights and Government Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said that Sri Lanka feels an international investigation will lack credibility and will not be independent, Xinhua reported. Samarasinghe was speaking to reporters after meeting some of the island's leading Buddhist monks and briefing them on the latest developments in the country. [ full story | comments ]


>> News Archives

Notices
Featured News

[Golbe And Mail - Apr 15, 2014 13:28:00 GMT]

Canada pulls funding for Commonwealth in flap over Sri Lanka


[IRIN - Apr 15, 2014 13:20:32 GMT]

Unclear path for Sri Lankan war probe


[Platform - Apr 15, 2014 13:18:09 GMT]

Sri Lanka: Reconciliation After War


[National Post - Apr 15, 2014 3:41:12 GMT]

Canada suspends $10-million contribution to the Commonwealth Secretariat over alleged human rights abuses in Sri Lanka


[Conservative Home - Apr 14, 2014 19:13:08 GMT]

Hugo Swire MP: A Commonwealth for the 21st Century


[Huffington Post - Apr 14, 2014 14:48:08 GMT]

Sri Lanka - UN Inquiry Just the Start of a Long Road to Justice


[IANS - Apr 13, 2014 2:22:39 GMT]

'Sri Lanka has no faith in international probe'


[Times of India - Apr 13, 2014 2:21:06 GMT]

Sri Lanka justifies troop presence in former war zones


[PTI - Apr 11, 2014 14:58:58 GMT]

Britain lists Sri Lanka as 'country of concern' in annual human rights report


[AFP - Apr 11, 2014 12:58:34 GMT]

Sri Lanka troops kill three men in search for Tamil Tigers


[Channel 4 News - Apr 11, 2014 12:57:30 GMT]

Controversial MP trip to Sri Lanka cancelled at 11th hour


[Globe and Mail - Apr 11, 2014 12:55:21 GMT]

Jim Flaherty's values were forged by blue-collar roots, a big Irish family and heartbreaking adversity


[Globe and Mail - Apr 10, 2014 19:02:25 GMT]

Former finance minister Jim Flaherty is dead at 64


[Open Democracy - Apr 09, 2014 16:20:05 GMT]

Sri Lanka inquiry: a Tamil asylum-seeker speaks


[CNN - Apr 09, 2014 16:15:57 GMT]

How strategic is Sri Lanka?