Sri Lanka Hopes India Will Buy Into Airport Without Planes. China Refused

[ NDTV ][ Jul 09 15:17 GMT ]

Sri Lanka has already sold China a port that gets almost no ships. The island nation now wants India to take control of an airport with no scheduled flights. The nation first tried to offer China the Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport in the southern district of Hambantota, but is now in talks with India, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told Sri Lanka's parliament on Thursday. The move follows the $1.1 billion sale of the loss-making port in Hambantota to state-owned China Merchants Group. [ full story | comments ]

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Sri Lanka jails extremist Buddhist monk for six months over threats to woman

A Sri Lankan court on Thursday jailed for six months a Buddhist monk a...


No jail for Swiss Tamil Tiger financiers

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PM asks President to temporarily remove Vijayakala Maheswaran

[ Ada Derana ][ Jul 03 20:00 GMT ]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has requested President Maithripala Sirisena to temporarily remove State Minister Vijayakala Maheswaran from her ministerial portfolio until inquiries are completed. An investigation is being carried out regarding certain controversial comments made by the State Minister regarding the now defunct LTTE, during an event in Jaffna yesterday Several MPs from both sides today requested the Speaker of Parliament to relieve State Maheswaran from her post as an MP. Speaker Karu Jayasuriya informed Parliament that an inquiry will be carried out with regard to the statement and an appropriate decision will be taken afterwards. Joint Opposition members charged that Maheswaran has no right to continue to represent the Parliament as she has committed the grave crimes of promoting terrorism and violating the Constitution. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka is moving a naval base to a port controlled by China, and other countries are worried Beijing is gaining a military edge

[ Reuters ][ Jul 03 19:45 GMT ]

Sri Lanka is shifting a naval base to a port built and controlled by China, it said on Monday, a move that will strengthen security at a harbor that foreign powers fear China could use for military purposes. The base currently in the tourist district of Galle will be moved 125 km (80 miles) east along Sri Lanka's southern coast to Hambantota, nearer a main shipping route between Asia and Europe. [ full story | comments ]

The flip side of Ford’s content-free campaign: Unpleasant surprises may be in store

[ TVO ][ Jun 25 17:41 GMT ]

Doug Ford at a podium that says, For the People If Ford had wanted to warn voters that they shouldn’t be planning any major home renovations after his election, he had plenty of opportunities to do so. (Tijana Martin) Rick Browning, from Napanee, is angry. “I voted for Ford because I thought he was the best of the bad lot. Do I regret it? Absolutely,” he says. “Kathleen Wynne’s not looking so bad right now.” [ full story | comments ]

Will Sri Lanka survive, even in its flawed State?

[ Sunday Times ][ Jun 25 16:47 GMT ]

On a visit to Myanmar last year, reputed Buddhist lay leaders who disapproved of incendiary anti-minority rhetoric engaged in by nationalist monk U Wirathu, were emphatic in their conversations with me that, ‘making him a martyr of the State’ would be the best possible media boost that he could get. ‘Marginalising him is a far better way to dilute the messages of hate that he preaches’ they opined. That was just prior to Myanmar’s State Sangha Maha Nayaka Committee prohibiting him from speaking for one year after determining that his statements had the potential to cause hatred and riots in the country. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lankan soldiers to visit Bodh Gaya: India employs military diplomacy, cultural outreach to offset Chinese offensive

[ FP ][ Jun 25 16:43 GMT ]

In order to step up military cooperation between the two countries, India is hosting Sri Lankan military personnel and their families at the Buddhist religious site at Bodh Gaya on 25 June. This out-of-the-box proposal was made by the Sri Lankan Army Commander lieutenant-general Mahesh Senanayake to Indian Army chief General Bipin Rawat during his high-profile week-long Sri Lankan visit in May this year. It remains to be seen how successful this military diplomacy will prove to be in cementing India-Sri Lankan ties. [ full story | comments ]

Reflections on the Invitation to Tamil Youth at the Commemoration of Sivakumaran’s Death Anniversary

[ CSST ][ Jun 21 15:42 GMT ]

At present, the Tamil people of the Northeast have very few leaders who are able to provide leadership and even those few have their limitations. Wigneswaran is no exception. In June last year when Wigneswaran emerged victorious by countering a plot by some members of the Provincial Council to oust him, a group of Tamil youth attempted to form a youth wing in support of Wigneswaran. But, Wigneswaran was not prepared to provide the much-needed leadership to this group. Some of these youth are now with the Tamil National People’s Front (TNPF), others having lost their enthusiasm have returned to pursue their own private interests. [ full story | comments ]

Foreign Ministry urges public to provide details of missing to OMP

[ Daily Mirror ][ Jun 21 13:53 GMT ]

The Foreign Affairs Ministry today urged and encouraged any one in Sri Lanka or overseas to share the information of the missing, including whose names have been listed by the International Truth and Justice Project (ITJP), with the Office on Missing Persons (OMP). The Ministry said its attention had been drawn to the list of names published online by the ITJP. “According to the ITJP, the list, which presently consists of 351 names, is of persons who are alleged to have disappeared while in the custody of the Sri Lankan Armed Forces in May 2009,” the ministry said in a statement. [ full story | comments ]

Top monk asks Sri Lanka’s ex-defence chief to return as ‘Hitler’

[ EN ][ Jun 21 13:21 GMT ]

A top Buddhist monk has asked Sri Lanka’s former defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa to become another “ Hitler” who is known to have killed up to six million Jews in the Holocaust."As the clergy, we feel the country needs a religious leader… Some people have described you as a Hitler,” the venerable monk said referring to Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. “Be a Hitler. Go with the military and take the leadership of this country.” The monk claimed that crime had increased in the country and he felt Sri Lanka needed a new leadership of a Sinhala-Buddhist individual. He was happy that Gotabhaya has thrown himself into contention to be the next president of Sri Lanka. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lanka to increase domestic flights

[ Xinhua ][ Jun 21 13:12 GMT ]

Sri Lanka on Thursday said it will expand its aviation sector by allowing five new companies to operate domestic flights in the island country. Following a proposal made by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Transport Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva, the Cabinet of Ministers had approved the proposal to ask the five firms to apply for operating licences, Cabinet Spokesperson Gayantha Karunathileka said. [ full story | comments ]

Human Rights Concerns in Sri Lanka - J. S. Tissainayagam,Journalist and Human Rights Advocate

[ House Committee on Foreign Affairs ][ Jun 19 17:31 GMT ]

Disappearances, torture and militarisation are all carryovers from the wartime Sri Lanka to the post-war period. They manifest clearly that despite the formal control of the military by civilian authority in Sri Lanka’s constitution, in reality, the military enjoys impunity for past and ongoing human rights abuses, some of which are characterised as war crimes and crimes against humanity by at least two different UN agencies. The impunity they enjoy has been 5 made only too clear by President Sirisena who has pledged multiple times that he would not subject any member of the military to trial for war crimes. Will these issues create more conflict? While that cannot be predicted with certainty, atrocity prevention studies say that “weak institutional governance in countries and contexts where atrocities have previously taken place,” could create trigger new atrocities. [ full story | comments ]

Time to heal Sri Lanka's wounds

[ UCA News ][ Jul 03 19:56 GMT ]

The Sri Lankan civil war ended in May 2009. In 2010, Mahinda Rajapaksa was re-elected as president and his party, the United People's Freedom Alliance, won a landslide victory in the parliamentary election due to the defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Even though the victors promised many policy changes for all the people, they were unable to bring in a new set-up to establish true peace, reconciliation and coexistence between the Tamils and Sinhalese. Instead they only thought of remaining in power by bringing in many changes to the constitution — and the people did not oppose such moves by the leaders. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lankan Lawmakers Target Reporters in Times Investigation

[ NY Times ][ Jul 03 19:37 GMT ]

Angered by a New York Times investigation detailing how China seized ownership of a seaport in Sri Lanka, a group of Sri Lankan lawmakers denounced the newspaper on Monday, focusing their ire on two local journalists for the newspaper. On Monday night, the lawmakers, who are allies of the former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, held a televised news conference in which they claimed that the journalists, Dharisha Bastians and Arthur Wamanan, were working on behalf of the current government to malign Mr. Rajapaksa. One lawmaker displayed a close-up photo of Ms. Bastians’s face for the cameras. [ full story | comments ]

Army denies withdrawing its formations in North and East

[ Daily Mirror ][ Jun 25 17:03 GMT ]

Sri Lanka army said some political elements are attempting to put the national security at risk by misleading the public on the grounds that the Army is in the process of withdrawing its formations in the North and East and downsizing its strength. “A canard, born out of some utterances, reportedly made by disgruntled political elements has been desperately attempting to mislead the public. We have not taken any such decision, nor has it contemplated implementing a move of that nature at all as alleged by those elements who try to showcase that ‘they’ are more patriotic than members of the armed forces in the country.,” the Army said. [ full story | comments ]

Sri Lankan family granted an injunction against deportation

[ AAP ][ Jun 25 16:45 GMT ]

A Sri Lankan family has been granted an injunction against deportation by the Federal Court. Tamils Priya and Nadesalingam, who have two Australian-born children, were served with a deportation notice on Friday after losing a court bid to stay in the country. The notice would have required the family to leave the country as early as Tuesday, despite having 21 days to appeal the Federal Circuit Court decision. [ full story | comments ]

Don’t go, sir!: TN students cling on to their teacher, refuse to accept his transfer

[ TNM ][ Jun 21 16:01 GMT ]

A young man in a simple grey shirt and grey pants is surrounded by students – all of them crying, hanging on to him, holding him back. G Bhagawan, the beloved English teacher of the Government High School in Veliagaram, Thiruvallur, was given a transfer order, and the students of the school were heartbroken. They created a barrier with their love and affection for the 28-year-old – one student even hugging him from the back, refusing to let him leave. Touched, Bhagawan, too, was crying as much as his students. [ full story | comments ]

Wave of asylum seekers floods Toronto’s shelters

[ Globe And Mail ][ Jun 21 14:21 GMT ]

Thousands of migrants who entered Canada from Manitoba and Quebec are gravitating to the country’s largest city, straining the emergency housing system...Canada’s approach to asylum seekers has been markedly different from the United States, sparking an influx of recent arrivals. Some refugee claimants are arriving at airports, while more than 9,000 have crossed from the U.S. border into Quebec (and, to a much lesser extent, B.C. and Manitoba) this year. And that has added to a crowding crunch, pushing shelters over capacity and driving up costs. [ full story | comments ]

US assures continued support for SL to fulfill commitments under UN resolution

[ Sunday Times ][ Jun 21 13:25 GMT ]

After the announcement by the United States that it is withdrawing from the United Nations Human Rights Council effective June 19, US Ambassador to Sri Lanka Athul Keshap met with senior Sri Lankan officials to convey the assurance of the United States Government that it will remain fully engaged with the Sri Lankan Government to help it meet its continuing and standing commitments to the international community to advance the cause of reconciliation and lasting peace for all Sri Lankans, the US Embassy in Colombo stated in a media release. [ full story | comments ]

Chinese firm pays $584 million in Sri Lanka port debt-to-equity deal

[ Reuters ][ Jun 21 13:15 GMT ]

China Merchants Port Holdings (0144.HK) has made a $584 million payment as part of a $1.12 billion deal to operate Sri Lanka’s deep sea Hambantota port, a state-run agency said on Wednesday. Under the deal, signed in July 2017, China Merchants Port (CM Port) will run the $1.5 billion Chinese-built port on a 99-year lease. The $1.12 billion total price is to be used to reduce the Sri Lankan government’s debt to China. [ full story | comments ]

Australian woman and daughter killed in Sri Lanka car crash

[ Guardian ][ Jun 21 13:11 GMT ]

A woman and child were killed in a collision south of the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo. Photograph: Guardian Graphics for the Guardian An Australian woman and her young daughter have been killed and two other members of the family have been injured in a car crash in Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan police said a 37-year-old woman and her four-year-old child died when their van collided at high speed with a truck that had broken down on the road near Nagoda, about two hours south of the capital, Colombo. [ full story | comments ]

Republicans on defensive, but Trump digs in on separating parents and children at border

[ CBC ][ Jun 18 16:46 GMT ]

Facing a rising tide of outrage from Democrats and some Republicans over the forced separation of migrant children and parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, President Donald Trump dug in Monday, again falsely blaming Democrats in the escalating political crisis while his Department of Homeland Security forcefully defended the practice. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and Attorney General Jeff Sessions refused Monday to apologize for enforcing immigration laws that result in the separation of children from their parents at the National Sheriffs' Association in New Orleans Monday. [ full story | comments ]

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