Foreign judges for war crimes tribunals: BASL on the fence

[ Sunday Times ][ Dec 01 03:23 GMT ]

The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) yesterday took a non-committal stand on the issue of foreign judges sitting on war crimes tribunals expected to be set up soon. It stated that these must inspire the confidence of “stakeholders” and be within the country’s Constitution, a position the Government has also taken. A statement issued by the BASL admitted that Sri Lanka’s existing judicial and prosecutorial systems have “not met the confidence of many concerned”. [ full story | comments ]

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Diaspora Hails De-listing, Offers Assistance

Reconciliation moves in Sri Lanka has received a much needed boost wit...


A phonecall, a meeting, then indefinite detention: the refugees at the mercy of Asio

Quietly, two weeks ago, a Tamil woman called Ranjini and her toddler s...


Sri Lanka’s transitional justice: Genuine move or red herring?

SRI LANKA’S Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera met with civil soci...



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India offers more military aid to Sri Lanka

[ The Hindu ][ Dec 01 03:21 GMT ]

A Sri Lanka Army spokesperson said this could be in the areas of "human resources development and hardware", declining to provide further details. India on Monday offered to provide technical assistance to the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) for “upgrading” its military requirements. This was conveyed by Gen. Dalbir Singh, Chief of the Indian Army, during a meeting with his Sri Lankan counterpart, Lt. Gen. Crishanthe De Silva, according to a release hosted on the website of the SLA. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka's attempts to humour western powers cause unease among its military

[ First Post ][ Nov 30 11:17 GMT ]

Under the Sirisena government, Tamils and Tamil groups have certainly received more freedom to articulate their thoughts about the reconciliation process. They have been promised that an honest attempt is underway to give them space and share in political process but, many are apprehensive. There are fears that the current reconciliation process might be doomed as it is led by the foreign ministry and not the justice ministry. Strangely there is no explanation from the government about the ownership of the reconciliation process. But, with a coalition government that seems to pull in different directions on many sensitive issues, the Sirisena government needs to move ahead on bringing about reconciliation without jeopardising its military victory and morale of armed forces. [ full story | comments ]

A phonecall, a meeting, then indefinite detention: the refugees at the mercy of Asio

[ The Guardian ][ Nov 28 23:40 GMT ]

Quietly, two weeks ago, a Tamil woman called Ranjini and her toddler son walked free from the gates of Villawood detention centre. Her son had never known a day of freedom in his life. Ranjini, a former member of the Sri Lankan separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, who had previously been living in Australia, was held in detention for more than three years without charge or allegation. While incarcerated, she was never told why she was being held – only that she had been assessed as a threat to national security – and when she was released she was not told why she was now free to go. [ full story | comments ]

Helping illegal migrants enter Canada not necessarily people smuggling: Supreme Court

[ National Post ][ Nov 28 22:51 GMT ]

People who help undocumented migrants enter Canada by steering a ship, acting as a lookout or cooking meals cannot automatically be branded as human smugglers, the Supreme Court of Canada says. In a pair of unanimous judgments Friday, the high court effectively ruled that acts of humanitarian assistance or aid between family members do not amount to people smuggling under Canada’s immigration law. Refugee and civil liberties groups welcomed the court’s pronouncement. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka could be hub for disaster relief in the region

[ Sunday Times ][ Nov 28 22:38 GMT ]

Sri Lanka is perfectly positioned to be a hub for disaster relief across the region as the country is well equipped for this role, says a disaster management expert.Dr. Sinharaja Tammita Delgoda, Disaster and Emergency Warning Network (DEWN), Dialog Network, said the country’s hotel sector, insurance companies, media and the armed forces are in place for an efficient hub process.Along with these amenities the country also possesses a wealth of expertise and experience, he said speaking at a 2-day International Disaster Convention held in Colombo this week. [ full story | comments ]

Safety Certification Counterfeited

[ TPS ][ Nov 27 18:33 GMT ]

Toronto Police have made an arrest in connection with the widespread sale of unapproved Tandoori ovens and stock pot burners that pose a significant public safety concern. The appliances were manufactured, distributed and, in some instances, installed by Kitchen Queen, also known as Kitchen Queen Superstore, based in Toronto. It’s believed these ovens were sold to restaurant owners, caterers and commercial kitchen operators who are unaware they may be unsafe because of forged Canadian Standards Association (CSA) certification stickers on the appliances. [ full story | comments ]

Jaffna fears remembering Tamil war dead

[ BBC ][ Nov 27 13:35 GMT ]

Six years after the end of Sri Lanka's bloody civil war, Jaffna in the northern Tamil heartlands is returning to normal. But do the city's residents feel free to remember their war dead? Another Jaffna resident said: "With the change in government, we feel that we have less intimidation, but the freedom we have is individual. "We can remember the victims of war in private, but no-one is brave enough to organise a mass meeting." Despite these concerns, some university students did demonstrate in support of the demands of the student who died. [ full story | comments ]

Local Tamils, not the diaspora that matter most

[ Daily Mirror ][ Nov 27 13:24 GMT ]

It is doubtful whether the government has got its priorities right in respect of reconciliation, given the emphasis it has placed on matters pertaining to the Tamil diaspora. It is true that there is no set order in which the government has to pursue actions in search of much needed reconciliation. However, one cannot understand the urgency in removing these outfits and persons from the designated lists, given the complexity of matters related to the Tamil diaspora and the question as to what the local Tamil people are going to gain through this move. On the other hand there seem to be many burning problems faced by the Tamil people solving of which would better serve the purpose of reconciliation. [ full story | comments ]

Building a New Life in Rural Sri Lanka

[ New York Times ][ Nov 27 01:30 GMT ]

It was a vacation for his 40th birthday that sold Paddy Dalton and his partner, Rob Ioannou, on Sri Lanka. Their stay at the Aman resort in the southern town of Galle was intoxicating enough that the couple returned three weeks later in search of a permanent home. They found it on the first day, acquiring a working tea and cinnamon estate a half-hour drive into the hills behind the surf town of Weligama on the island nation’s south coast. Five years later, they have completed their first home on the estate, which comes in at 50 acres and employs about 30 people. [ full story | comments ]

Madras High Court directs police to allow meetings of pro-Tamil outfits

[ PTI ][ Nov 27 01:28 GMT ]

The Madras High Court on Thursday permitted two pro-Tamil outfits to hold meetings to commemorate those, who laid down their lives during the 'Eelam war' between 1989 and 2009 in Sri Lanka, at Kolathur in Salem district and at Palanisamy grounds in Alamoor on November 27. Justice M.M. Sundresh allowed two different pleas filed by C Ramamurthy, town secretary of the Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam and by P Bharathi of Sethiathope in Cuddalore district, a functionary of Naam Thamizhar Katchi, praying for direction to police to permit the meetings. The judge directed the respective police authorities to allow the petitioners to conduct the meetings. [ full story | comments ]

Diaspora Hails De-listing, Offers Assistance

[ Sunday Leader ][ Dec 01 00:45 GMT ]

Reconciliation moves in Sri Lanka has received a much needed boost with the Tamil Diaspora offering assistance after the government de-listed several organizations accused of having links with the LTTE. The New York based Human Rights Watch (HRW) said that the de-listing opens the doors for discussions, which will prevent future conflict and ensure healing between and within communities. “HRW welcomes the de-listing of diaspora groups. This is a positive step towards the reconciliation process if it leads to the kind of honest and difficult discussions that are necessary for mutual understanding, preventing future conflicts, and healing between and within communities,” HRW Asia Director Brad Adams told The Sunday Leader. [ full story | comments ]

Punjabi-Canadian journalist arrested in India

[ Toronto Star ][ Nov 29 12:30 GMT ]

News that long-time Brampton journalist Baltej Pannu had been arrested in India brought the GTA’s Punjabi-Canadian community out to a massive protest Saturday demanding his safe release. More than 3,000 people filled the Canadian Convention Centre in Brampton, responding to a Facebook post and news articles in India's papers that detailed Pannu's arrest in Punjab on Thursday, on charges related to sexual exploitation and intimidation. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka’s transitional justice: Genuine move or red herring?

[ Asian Correspondent ][ Nov 28 22:55 GMT ]

SRI LANKA’S Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera met with civil society organisations (CSOs) on October 29 to discuss public consultations for setting up a transitional justice project to deal with the mass atrocities committed during the country’s civil war. Despite this seemingly democratic practice, questions remain as to whether in its implementation this project is going to shortchange the worst affected – the war’s victims. [ full story | comments ]

Human smuggling law too broad, Supreme Court finds

[ Vancouver Sun ][ Nov 28 22:49 GMT ]

The Supreme Court of Canada says the country’s human smuggling law was over-broad and unconstitutional but charges against Tamil smugglers apprehended in 2009 can still proceed. In two related decisions on Friday involving the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, the Court unanimously found a section of the legislation flawed. But the law was unconstitutional only insofar as it prohibited humanitarian aid to refugees, mutual assistance among asylumseekers and assistance to family members. [ full story | comments ]

M.I.A. ‘Borders’ music video shows singer travelling with refugees

[ Global News ][ Nov 27 19:52 GMT ]

Her lyrics are often controversial and raw, as is the case with her latest music video for the song “Borders,” and the actual visuals are equally as stirring. Showing her among huge groups of refugees (obviously not real refugees), she travels with them as they climb up wire fences, pack into small boats traversing the water, and try to wade through the ocean.A nod to the current worldwide debate over the plight of Syrian refugees, M.I.A. even wears a Paris Saint-Germain soccer shirt, perhaps in reference to the recent terrorist attack in Paris. “Borders” will appear on M.I.A.’s forthcoming studio album, Matahdatah. [ full story | comments ]

Supreme Court rules human smuggling law 'over-broad' in MV Sun Sea case

[ CBC ][ Nov 27 16:09 GMT ]

Canada's human smuggling law is "over-broad" as it's applied to people seeking asylum in Canada, including B.C.'s MV Sun Sea case, the Supreme Court of Canada decides. In two separate but related rulings, the top court found unanimously that two sections of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act do not apply to some people who help refugee claimants reach Canada. The exceptions include family members, humanitarian workers and migrants helping other migrants. [ full story | comments ]

North remembers the war victims

[ Sunday Times ][ Nov 27 13:26 GMT ]

The people of the Northern province today commemorate their loved ones lost in the three decades of war with special religious observations across the region, provincial sources said. The University of Jaffna commemorated the day with the lighting lamps and candles inside the campus premises. Students, lecturers and other staff of the university participated in the event. [ full story | comments ]

MV Sun Sea people smuggling decision expected in Supreme Court of Canada

[ CBC ][ Nov 27 13:14 GMT ]

The cases made their way to Federal Court, where two different judges ruled in favour of the migrants, allowing judicial reviews of the refugee decisions. Judge Richard Mosley said Canada's commitment to cracking down on people smuggling "may be blurred by an overly expansive interpretation" of the law to encompass "those who did not plan or agree to carry out the scheme and have no prospect of a reward other than a modest improvement in their living conditions en route." In the case of B306, Judge Jocelyne Gagne said the board's decision was "not informed by the context of complete dependency, vulnerability and power imbalance in which the applicant found himself during the three-month journey to Canada." [ full story | comments ]

U.S. lauds Sri Lanka government on post-war Tamil reconciliation

[ Reuters ][ Nov 27 01:28 GMT ]

The United States has praised Sri Lanka's new government for speeding up efforts towards reconciliation with ethnic minority Tamils after a separatist civil war which lasted nearly three decades and killed tens of thousands of people. Steps such as the return of land, efforts to find the missing and the lifting of bans on Tamil groups will help heal wounds that linger six years after conflict ended, said Samantha Power, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations. [ full story | comments ]

Maaveerar Naal 2015

[ Tamil Guardian ][ Nov 27 01:26 GMT ]

Eelam Tamils across the world mark today, November 27th, as Tamil National Remembrance Day in memory of all those who lost their lives in the struggle for freedom from oppression. We remember. Preparations for events in all major diaspora centres have been in full swing over recent days, while Tamils in the North-East are clandestinely prepared for today with small-scale commemorations, despite the Sri Lanka's police warning of legal action against anyone remembering the dead of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. [ full story | comments ]

>> News Archives


2015-12-04 - Markham, ON

Anpuneri Fundraising Event

Featured News

[Sunday Leader - Dec 01, 2015 0:45:37 GMT]

Diaspora Hails De-listing, Offers Assistance

[The Guardian - Nov 28, 2015 23:40:12 GMT]

A phonecall, a meeting, then indefinite detention: the refugees at the mercy of Asio

[Asian Correspondent - Nov 28, 2015 22:55:07 GMT]

Sri Lanka’s transitional justice: Genuine move or red herring?

[National Post - Nov 28, 2015 22:51:10 GMT]

Helping illegal migrants enter Canada not necessarily people smuggling: Supreme Court

[CBC - Nov 27, 2015 16:09:56 GMT]

Supreme Court rules human smuggling law 'over-broad' in MV Sun Sea case

[New York Times - Nov 27, 2015 1:30:10 GMT]

Building a New Life in Rural Sri Lanka

[Reuters - Nov 27, 2015 1:28:59 GMT]

U.S. lauds Sri Lanka government on post-war Tamil reconciliation

[Asia Times - Nov 27, 2015 1:19:31 GMT]

Sri Lanka’s coalition govt in deep water over arms ship scandal

[PTI - Nov 27, 2015 1:11:37 GMT]

Vaiko celebrates 61st birthday of Prabhakaran

[AFP - Nov 23, 2015 15:14:28 GMT]

Sri Lanka slashes list of 'terrorists' in reconciliation bid

[ANI - Nov 23, 2015 15:12:36 GMT]

US envoy to UN Samantha Power visits Jaffna Peninsula, to meet Lankan leadership today

[iMPAKTER - Nov 20, 2015 13:43:39 GMT]

Demand Justice in Sri Lanka - Jim McDonald, Sri Lanka Country Specialist for Amnesty International USA

[The Diplomat - Nov 20, 2015 1:51:49 GMT]

Samantha Power Must Recalibrate Washington’s Sri Lanka Rhetoric

[UN News Centre - Nov 20, 2015 1:51:03 GMT]

Sri Lanka must fulfil the rights of families of the disappeared – UN rights experts

[The Hindu - Nov 19, 2015 22:05:46 GMT]

Weapons in ship from Sri Lanka raise alarm