|16-03-2003 at 08:50 AM(SL Time)|
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad gives the inauguration address at the opening session of the 114-nation Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit in Kuala Lumpur, February 24, 2003.
President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga is welcomed by Malaysian Prime Minister as she arrives to the opening session (insert). (pictures by REUTERS)
Canada lose opener John Davison as Prabath Nissanka has him caught behind by Kumar Sangakkara with the score on 0
(Photo courtesy : BBC)
School children participating in a protest demonstration organised by pro-LTTE groups against the army's demand to remove web belts worn by LTTE women cadres when they enter government-controlled areas
(photo Courtesy:Sunday Times)
Chaminda Vaas makes history by taking a hat-trick with the first three balls
Chronology of Sri Lankan suicide blasts
Following are the major suicide bombings carried out by LTTE:
July 5, 1987: The LTTE carries out its first suicide bombing, killing 40 troops at the Nelliyady army camp in the north of the country
March 2, 1991: Defence minister Ranjan Wijeratne is among 19 people killed when a car bomb is detonated in Colombo
May 21, 1991: Former Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi is killed at a meeting in southern India.
May 1, 1993: President Ranasinghe Premadasa and 23 others are killed by a suicide bomber in Colombo.
December 18, 1999: President Chandrika Kumaratunga is wounded and 38 are killed in two separate attacks on election rallies.
January 5, 2000: At least 12 killed and 24 wounded when a woman suicide bomber detonates explosives strapped to her body outside the office of Prime Minister Sirima Bandaranaike.(Pro Log/AFP)
Rev. Kalawelgala Chandaloka, of National Bhikku Front is being manhandled by Inspector of Police, Ranjith Wanaraja.The NBF had organized a protest to call upon the government to banish Jon Westborg, the Norwegian Ambassador.
(Photo courtesy: Lanktruth)
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and President Chandrika Kumaratunga celebrated the country’s 55th anniversary of Independence Day (Pic by Eranga Jayawardene)
(Photo courtesy: The Island )
The Sri Lankan army mascot a baby elephant "Kandula", takes part in rehearsals February 3, 2003 a day ahead of the island's 55th independence anniversary
(Photo courtesyAFP )
"The true number of child soldiers is unknown"
-Ms Carol Bellamy-
(Photo courtesy: BBC )
On Wednesday January 1996 at 10:50 in the morning the LTTE blasted the Central Bank building with a truck bomb and killed more than 100 innocent people and wounded about 750
"Your financial assistance will give us strength and power. We can achieve whatever we want in the battlefield" - "We need to strengthen our military capability." - "The MoU that was signed with the Sri Lanka Government is in our favour." - "Even at the peace table we take it easy." - "But our counterparts, run here and there, because they have to discuss with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe every ten minutes." - You do not have to worry about the battlefield. We have a lot of commandos waiting."
Aravinda De Silva
Lake House journalists in recent times have not
been known for their outstanding musical talents nor even journalistic talents. Thus, the
controversial news report that they are to produce a CD with a hyped up (New Life) version
of Sri Lanka’s National Anthem has surprised and intrigued not only music lovers but
also ordinary citizens.(The Island-Editorial)
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Hands off Muslim affairs, Hakeem tells LTTE
Brushing aside LTTE chief negotiator Anton Blasingham's comments regarding the legitimacy of the SLMC leadership, Minister Rauff Hakeem yesterday called on the LTTE to desist from "interfering unduly in civil administrative matters in Muslim areas".
"In the interest of the need for an inevitable rapprochement between the SLMC and the LTTE which is crucial for sustaining the peace process, I would like to forget about this episode altogether,."Mr. Hakeem said referring to the statement made by Mr. Balasingham.(The Sunday Times)
Japan to play supplementary role in peace process
Japan's special envoy for the Sri Lankan peace process, Yasushi Akashi, has said that he would play a "hands-on role'' in the efforts to restore peace in the island as it was "very important in the global context''.
As Sri Lanka's single largest donor, Japan would play a "supplementary role" to the efforts of the facilitators, Norway, Mr. Akashi said on Saturday at the end of a three-day visit to the island.(The Hindu)
Sri Lanka threatens to pull out of World Cup
Sri Lanka has threatened to pull out of the World Cup or field a second string side after Sanath Jayasuriya and his team refused to accept a pay settlement.
The Board of Control for Cricket in Sri Lanka (BCCSL) made it clear in a two-page statement that it was contemplating other options as the dragging match fee dispute remained deadlocked, busting ICC's extended January 17 deadline to have the player contracts signed and forwarded.(MSN.CO.IN)
Sri Lanka Govt. & LTTE have equal status
-Japanese special envoy Yasushi Akashi-
Sri Lankan government and the LTTE would have the same status when they attend the donor summit which will be held in Japan this year and Japan would commit itself more towards the peace process said Japanese special envoy Mr. Yasushi Akashi at a discussion held today. The discussion between the representatives of the JVP and Mr. Yasushi Akashi, the visiting special envoy from Japan was held today (17th) at the official residence of the Ambassador to Japan.(Lnakatruth)
India not in Japan summit
India has decided not to participate at the summit of the donor countries that is scheduled to be held in Japan next month. This has been informed to Ms. Yoriko Kavaguchi, Foreign Minister of Japan who toured India last week. The Foreign Ministers intention of the visit had been to persuade India to participate at the summit.(Lankatruth)
Tiger radio goes far and wide
Tamil guerrillas this week began operations of their radio station Voice of Tigers (VOT) but have exceeded the range of their broadcast as stipulated by the licence granted by Colombo.
The licence issued by the government granted permission to operate the radio station for a radius of 20 kilometres, but the reception of the VOT radio was being monitored over 70 kilometres away from the radio station at Kilinochchi.(The Sunday Times)
A Petition of One Million Signatures to the secretary of the UNO
Arrangements have been finalized to hand over to Mr. Koffi Annan, the General Secretary of the UNO who is scheduled to visit Sri Lanka on the 20th of February a petition of one million signatures demanding him not to engage in activities that would pave the way for the division of the country.(Lankatruth)
Sri Lanka World Cup worry
Sri Lanka have not yet confirmed that their leading players will be at the World Cup because of a row over pay.
The Board of Control for Cricket in Sri Lanka (BCCSL) has seen a performance-related pay offer turned down by the national side.
Murali fed up with Australia
Muttiah Muralitharan says he is fed up with Australia and will never tour there again after suffering abuse from loutish fans in Brisbane on Wednesday. (BBC)
Constitution snag hits new national anthem
The President’s Office issuing a statement said the newly recorded national anthem should not be sung at the Independence Day celebrations until it is sanctioned by the Constitution.
In a letter to Minister of Power and Energy, Karu Jayasuriya and Minister of Media, Imtiasz Bakeer Markar, Presidential Secretary K. Balapatabendi said on Thursday that the present national anthem should not be changed on any account as it had a score and a tune accepted by the Constitution of Sri Lanka. (The Island)
Sri Lanka President cold shoulders Japanese envoy
President Chandrika Kumaratunga abruptly cancelled a meeting with a Japanese special envoy who is aiming to drum up international aid for Sri Lanka's peace bid, an official said Friday
Yasushi Akashi was set to call on Kumaratunga Thursday but his team was told at the 11th hour that the president had to attend an "important political meeting" and that the appointment was cancelled.(Pro Log)
Tamil Tiger radio goes legal
Tamil Tiger rebels have started broadcasting on FM radio in northern Sri Lanka
Critics of the move say the government has handed the rebels a powerful propaganda tool.(BBC)
Army shouldn’t withdraw
-General Sathish Nambiyar-
At a time when the LTTE is armed to the teeth the report submitted by Gen. Sarath Fonseka, Sri Lanka Army’s Commander for the North should be adapted to the letter and failing to do this would bring disaster to the Army and the people as well states Gen. Sathish Nambiyar, a former military expert of the Indian army. (Lankatruth)
Sri Lanka moves to bring back overseas Tamil refugees
A Sri Lankan minister Tuesday began talks with Tamil Tiger rebels on resettling thousands who had fled fighting between troops and guerrillas and sought refuge abroad, officials said. Rehabilitation Minister Jayalath Jayawardene met representatives from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in the rebel-held northern town of Kilinochchi, officials said.(pro Log)
Sri Lankan leftist party repeats call for expulsion of Norwegian envoy
Sri Lanka's leftist JVP or the People's Liberation Front Monday reiterated its call for expulsion of Norwegian ambassador to Colombo Jon Westborg.
The JVP accused Westborg of acting as an agent of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels for his role in facilitating a consignment of radio transmission equipment for theTamil rebels.(Xinhuanet)
'Bomb' kills Sri Lanka children
At least six people, five of them children, have been killed in Sri Lanka after they tried to open a suspected parcel bomb, police say.(BBC)
Sri Lanka peace row deepens
Hopes for reconciliation between Sri Lanka's two main parties have faded further after the president threatened to sack the prime minister for his handling of the peace process.(BBC)
A sobering reality check
With the outcome of the fourth round of talks between the Sri Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) not being as spectacular as that in previous rounds, doubts are being raised as to whether the Sri Lankan peace process is in trouble. Unlike the previous rounds of negotiations that saw the two sides making noteworthy shifts in their hitherto held positions or reaching momentous agreements, the latest round was somewhat of a disappointment.(Asia Times)
Translating confidence into consensus
COLOMBO - The fourth round of talks between the government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in Thailand that ended on January 9 marks a new phase in the peace process. A series of confidence building measures, commencing with a ceasefire almost 13 months ago, had led to a convivial atmosphere at each round of negotiations.(Asia Times)
Sri Lankan President issues threat to sack PM
Sri Lanka's cohabitation crisis worsened Tuesday with President Chandrika Kumaratunga issuing a thinly veiled threat to sack her Prime Minister over the handling of the Norwegian-backed peace talks with Tamil rebels.
In a rare live televised interview with private television station Swarnavahini, she said she can sack Wickremesinghe and his entire Cabinet ‘‘with just one letter, even tomorrow’’. Asked by the interviewer if she planned shortly to sack the Prime Minister, Kumaratunga said ‘‘if I think he is doing harm to the country, I will not hesitate to do it.’’ She accused the Prime Minister of not keeping her informed about the ongoing peace bid with Tamil Tiger guerrillas and said ‘‘he is acting as an executive Prime Minister".
(Pro Log)-(The Indian Express)
[Full Story](pro Log) [Full Story]((The Indian Express)
India's role in Sri Lanka seen increasing
India is increasingly getting involved in the Norwegian-backed peace process in Sri Lanka
After the end of the latest round of talks in Thailand last week, a Sri Lankan negotiator and key minister, Milinda Moragoda, went straight to New Delhi.(rediff.com)
Suicide Bombing Masters: Tamil Tigers
Inside the Kantharuban Arivuchcholai orphanage, which is set in a clearing hacked from the jungle's oppressive vegetation, sits a small painted hut, a mini-museum of sorts
Inside it is a picture of Kantharuban, who blew himself up in 1991. There is a picture of Captain Millar, who blew himself up in 1987. There is a picture of 12 cadres of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam who swallowed cyanide capsules after capture by Indian troops in 1987.(New York Times)
This is only a respite for the war!
As there are uncertainties in the talks between the government and the LTTE this period of ‘peace talks’ may be only a respite for the war said Mr. Rauff Hakeem, Leader of Muslim Congress & Minister of Port development & shipping, Eastern Development & Muslim affairs addressing the party convention held yesterdays.(Lankatruth)
I won’t hesitate to send Prime Minister home!The President
She had decided to take action against the Norwegian Ambassador as his actions were becoming a threat to the security of this country and in such a situation she would not hesitate to send even the Prime Minister home said President Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga.(Lankatruth)
Sri Lankan peace talks achieved little: opposition
Sri Lanka's main opposition said Friday the latest round of peace talks between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels had achieved little on the issue of dismantling security zones..(Pro Log)
Serious violation of ceasefire agreement on A-9
The government has brought to the notice of the Norwegian-led Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) about a serious violation of a cease-fire agreement in relation to the overland movement of vehicles on the Kandy-Jaffna A9 road, authoritative sources said onn Wednesday .( The Island )
Norwegian PM stresses 'impartial' role in Sri Lanka
Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik assured Saturday that Oslo was "impartial" and committed to peace in Sri Lanka, after criticism from the island-nation's president, Chandrika Kumaratunga.(Pro Log)
UNP thugs beat up Bhikkus
Rev. Baragama Wimalabuddhi Thera, Assistant Secretary of the Hmbanthota Branch of National Bhikku Front and Rev. Rev. Baragama Gnanananda Thera, incumbent of Mahindarama at Uyanwatte , Matara were beaten up by UNP thugs led by Janaka Wedaarachchi, nephew of UNP MP for Hambanthota District Mr. Dillip Wedaarachchi. Rev. Wimalabuddhi is the registrar of Matara District branch of the Amarapura Chapter.(Lankatruth)
Norwegian PM stresses ‘impartial’ role in Sri Lanka
Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik assured Saturday that Oslo was “impartial” and committed to peace in Sri Lanka, after criticism from the island-nation’s president, Chandrika Kumaratunga.(Daily Times)
Colombo wants to buy peace at any cost: Kadirgamar
Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik assured Saturday that Oslo was “impartial” and committed to peace in Sri Lanka, after criticism from the island-nation’s president, Chandrika Kumaratunga.(Yahoo News)
Mystery aircraft over MullaitivuIs, LTTE Air Wing active again?
A Dvora Fast Attack Craft of the Sri Lanka Navy was moving quietly on patrol off the coastline of the Mullaitivu district on the night of Monday, the 29th of December 2002.(The Island)
Cash carrot keeps Sri Lanka foes talking, but tough times lie ahead
Sri Lanka's warring parties have survived their most difficult negotiations for fear of jeopardising millions of dollars in foreign cash, but diplomats say tougher talks are still ahead.(Radio Sigapore International )
Sri Lanka: ICRC asked to help Solve Missing persons issue
During the last round of peace talks between the Sri Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), the parties agreed to ask the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to help them set up an independent verification mechanism to ascertain the fate of persons unaccounted for in connection with the conflict, a task which the ICRC has expressed its willingness to take on.(Reuters AlertNet)
Why LTTE’s guns have gone silent?
LTTE spokesman Anton Balasingham was quoted by BBC on Wednesday saying that the Tamil people (read the LTTE) derived bargaining power from the Black Tiger units and therefore disbanding them was a matter that had to be taken up when a permanent solution was found. Since the signing of the ongoing ceasefire, he has said, these units have been non-operational.(The Island)
Tigers collect Army uniforms
The Police have taken into custody a parcel of Army uniforms handed over to a driver of a bus plying between Wakare and Eravur by a band of LTTE members(Lankatruth)
Sri Lankan talks end round without major breakthroughs
The Sri Lankan government and the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam concluded another round of peace talks today in Thailand with an announcement of incremental progress but without the dramatic breakthroughs of previous rounds(The New York Times)
Sri Lankan peace talks achieved little: opposition
Sri Lanka's main opposition said Friday the latest round of peace talks between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels had achieved little on the issue of dismantling security zones
"It is very clear that very little was achieved on the question of military zones," said Sarath Amunugama, spokesman for the opposition People's Alliance (PA) headed by President Chandrika Kumaratunga(Pro Log)
Sri Lanka peace talks to continue
The latest round of Sri Lanka peace talks ended in Thailand on Thursday, without any progress on the major military issues.(The Norway Post)
Weerawansa wants PM to reply
JVP Parliamentary Group Leader Wimal Weerawansa yesterday submitted an oral question to be asked from Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Minister of Policy Development and Implementation on the history of Sri Lanka with regard to matters that transpired at a meeting between the Prime Minister’s Secretary, Bradman Weerakone and Ms. Maria Carrilho of the European Parliament on December 25, 2002.(The Island)
Sri Lanka Faces the Divisions Within
Each morning, a representative of the International Committee of the Red Cross rolls back a barrier dividing two nations within one country.On one side is Sri Lanka; on the other, Tamil Eelam.
Sri Lanka is an official state, the former British colony of Ceylon. Tamil Eelam is an unofficial one within it, carved from territory seized by rebels during a two-decade war of secession on behalf of the Tamil people (The New York Times)
SU: Army must ‘stick to its guns’
Sihala Urumaya (SU) Leader Thilak Karunaratne said the fourth round of peace talks failed as the government and the LTTE were unable to sort out the dispute over High Security Zones (HSZ) in the Jaffna peninsula. He maintained that the army should "stick to its guns," until the LTTE laid down their arms before considering any form of withdrawal in the HSZ.(The Island)
Tigers' suicide squad – “the Black Tigers” still an important says Anton Balasingham
"We have to keep them and pressurise the government to bring about a settlement that would satisfy the aspirations of our people."
"We rejected calls by President Kumaratunga to disband the squads."
"I feel the single biggest hurdle to the peace process is President Kumaratunga."(BBC)
In the name of the Buddha: only for select audience?
Foreign Minister Tyronne Fernando told parliament on Wednesday the government had taken all steps to prevent a general release of the film "In the name of the Buddha", when PA MP Venerable Baddegama Samitha Thera raised concern about the controversial movie.(The Island)
LTTE gang abducts colleague from prison van
An armed LTTE gang abducted an LTTE prisoner who was being brought in a prison van from the Jaffna prison to Anuradhapura courts on Monday afternoon, Vavuniya police said.(The Island)
Aung San Suu Kyi: Buddhism is the Panacea for curbing terrorism
Special interview with Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma's leader of the Opposition, conducted by South Korea's "Buddhism" newspaper appeared when the newspaper recently celebrated its 43rd Anniversary.
Yangon, Myanmar -- Aung San Suu Kyi won the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1991. She is the leader of the opposition in Burma, and considered all over as the symbol of democracy.(Asian Tribune)
Sri Lankan Govt., LTTE disagree on SDN
NAKORN PATHOM (Thailand) Jan. 8. Public disagreement between the Sri Lankan Government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) surfaced for the first time in the latest peace process here today, with a continued deadlock between Colombo and the Tigers over the future of a panel to discuss the sensitive issue of de-militarisation and normalisation in the north east. (The Hindu)
Rebels pull out of Sri Lankan peace talks
NAKHON PATHOM, Thailand Jan. 7 — Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels pulled out of talks with the government on military reductions Tuesday, the first major setback to hit negotiations on ending the country's 19-year civil war.(ABC News)
[Full Story] [Previous Stories}
"As long as Maj.Gen. Fonseka is operating in Jaffna there is no purpose in calling......''Anton Balasingham
NAKORN PATHOM (Thailand) JAN. 7. A continued soft approach at the Sri Lanka peace talks today averted the fledging process from a total breakdown. (The Hindu)
[Full Story] Sri Lanka rebels recruiting children despite truce
COLOMBO, Jan. 7 — Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers are still recruiting child soldiers despite months of peace talks and past promises to stop the practice, aid workers and truce monitors said.(NBC)
[Full Story] Norway delays envoys departure from Sri Lanka
NAKORN PATHOM, Thailand, Jan. 7 — Norway said its ambassador to Sri Lanka would delay his departure from Colombo till April, allowing him to attend more rounds of peace talks despite fierce criticism from opponents of the peace bid.(NBC)
[Full Story] Sri Lanka talks snag 'resolved'
A crisis over Tamil Tiger disarmament has been overcome at peace talks with the government in Thailand, the rebels say.(BBC)
[Full Story] Specify ‘sacrifices’
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe in his address to the nation while asking that no attempt be made to derail the peace process, has stressed that ‘...We must all make sacrifices to keep the Tamil people with us and protect the territorial integrity of the country.’
Such appeals are not uncommon. We have been treated to them ad nauseam. Under the previous political dispensation too, sacrifices were expected of the people to keep the peace process going as if the success of the processes that were on was dependent on their sacrifices alone. (The Island-Editorial)
[Full Story] EPDP briefs US ambassador on LTTE violations
The EPDP yesterday briefed the United States Ambassador in Sri Lanka Ashley Wills on the "systematic manner in which the LTTE was carrying on hostile acts against the EPDP and other democratic political parties".(The Island)
[Full Story] Sri Lanka-LTTE talks on de-escalation deferred by a day
NAKORN PATHOM (THAILAND) . The "toughest" session of Sri Lanka's fragile peace process began here today with Colombo and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) deferring the sensitive issue of de-escalation of the high security zones (HSZs) in the northern Jaffna peninsula to tomorrow.(The Hindu)
[Full Story] HSZ withdrawal: Beware of LTTE trap!
COLOMBO, Jan. 05:High Security Zones were established to protect our security forces, security installations, sensitive weapons and equipment etc. and hence the country and the people from the LTTE.(Sunday Times)
[Full Story] Tamil Tigers harden position before peace talks
COLOMBO, Jan. 4 — Days before the latest round of peace talks, Sri Lanka's Tamil rebels hardened their position on Saturday against calls to disarm in exchange for allowing refugees to return to army-controlled areas.(NBC)
[Full Story] Sri Lanka talks face hurdle
Sri Lankan Government and rebel negotiators are heading for Thailand for more talks amid growing differences on the issue of disarming.
The talks were meant to focus on a federal model as a way to meet Tamil Tiger demands for self-rule.(BBC)
[Full Story] Jaffna security in jeopardy: MEP
MEP leader Dinesh Gunawardena criticising the government’s peace process yesterday said peace is the wish of all in the new year but it should not be "peace made at the point of a gun to appease the LTTE."
[Full Story] Major General Fonseka will not be transferred - Defence Secy
Defence Ministry Secretary Austin Fernando yesterday said that Major General Sarath Fonseka, Security Forces Commander in Jaffna will not be transferred just because someone requests him to do so.(The Island)
[Full Story] Protect country before craving for power! -Mahanayake tells John Amarathunge
Before trying to establish power the country must be protected and the government must establish itself without harming its citizens said Rev. Rambukwelle Sri Vipassi Thero, Mahanayake of Malwatte sect to Mr. John Amarathunge, Minister of Internal Affairs. The Minister had visited the Mahanayake to make the prelate aware of the on going peace process.( Lankatruth)
[Full Story] UNP thugs murder activists of the opposition!
Two activists of the JVP and SLFP have been hacked to death by thugs belonging to the UNP.Dhanapala, Secretary of Helaudakande in Kolonna electorate was stabbed to death on 29th December by a gang of thugs lead by ‘Army Kumara’ alias R.P.Premadasa, an ardent supporter of the UNP in the area. ( Lankatruth)
Kumaratunga to raise LTTE import controversy with Norway
Colombo, Dec 30 (IANS) Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga will write to Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Bondevik protesting his country's embassy reportedly importing radio equipment for the Tamil Tigers. Full Story
India, Sri Lanka agree to cooperate to prevent arms smuggling
COLOMBO, Dec 30, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- India and Sri Lanka have agreed to enhance cooperation between navies of the two countries in naval surveillance operations to prevent Tamil Tiger rebels from smuggling more weapons, The Island newspaper said on Monday. Full Story
Chargesheet filed against MDMK chief Vaiko
Dec 30 TOI CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu police on Monday filed a chargesheet against MDMK chief Vaiko and eight others, arrested in July under Pota for their alleged remarks supporting the banned LTTE. Full Story
Japanese foreign minister to visit Sri Lanka
COLOMBO, Dec 30, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Japanese Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi will visit Sri Lanka next week at a special invitation of the government, according to the Foreign Ministry Full Story
Colombo decks up for best New Year in two decades
Colombo, Dec 30 (IANS) The streets are illuminated, the buildings and squares festooned, and Christmas carols are still floating in the air of a city dreaming of peace as New Year approaches. Full Story
Sri Lanka and Indian navies agree on closer cooperation
COLOMBO, Dec 29 (AFP) - The Sri Lankan and Indian navies have agreed to boost the sharing of information regarding the Palk Straits, a narrow sea strip between the two countries, officials said here Sunday.
Vice Admiral Daya Sandagiri, the Sri Lankan navy commander, returned Saturday from two days in India at which he met with his counterpart Admiral Madhavendra Singh. Full Story
S.Lankan President to deal directly with Norwegian PM over radio equipment
COLOMBO, Dec 29, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga will apprise Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Bondevik of her serious concerns over powerful radio equipment imported for Tamil Tiger rebels through Norwegian embassy in Colombo, The Sunday Times said. Full Story
Congress calls for protest against film insulting Buddhism
The All Ceylon Women’s Buddhist Congress (ACWBC) yesterday called on the President and Prime Minister to protest to the United Kingdom and Norway governments about the screening of the film "in the name of the Buddha" which is utterly blasphemous of Buddhism and grossly insulting to the Sri Lankan armed forces". (Dec 31 the Island) Full Story
Sri Lanka plays down 'crisis' with Tamil Tigers
COLOMBO, Dec 30 (AFP) - The Sri Lankan government Monday played down sharp disagreements with Tamil Tiger rebels over the relocation of military camps, an issue set to overshadow peace talks next week. Full Story
President & JVP discussed united action !
A special discussion was held at Presidents House between the President Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga and the leaders of the JVP. The JVP was represented by Mr. Wimal Weerawansa, Propaganda Secretary and the Leader of the Group of Parliamentarians of the JVP and Mr. Anura Dissanayake, Member of Parliament and Member of Political Bureau. (Dec 30 Lankatruth) Full Story
Tamil Tigers to push resettlement at peace talks
COLOMBO, Dec. 30 — A dispute over how to return residents forced out of military areas of war-torn northern Sri Lanka will overshadow negotiations on core issues at peace talks next week, the island's Tamil Tiger rebels said.
The government wants to discuss human rights and federal models of governing at the talks, but the rebels said that was unlikely after they rejected a call to disarm in return for allowing the refugees into the sprawling military camps. Full Story
As long as LTTE retains military capability
High security zones must continue - President
President Chandrika Kumaratunga yesterday said that existing High Security Zones (HSZs) in the north-east should remain intact as long as the LTTE retains `a military capability' to target key bases, particularly Palaly and KKS, a presidential aide said.
Quoting the president, her spokesman Janadasa Peiris said the president was in touch with relevant officials including the security forces top brass regarding the crisis. Yesterday's remarks were her first response on the LTTE call to dismantle HSZs.(Dec 28 Island) Full Story
Resettlement and normalisation ‘main issues’ for Thailand talks - Balasingham
The resettlement of displaced Tamil people and the normalisation of conditions in their areas of residence will be the main issues to be taken up at the negotiations in Thailand next month between the Liberation Tigers and the Sri Lankan government, the LTTE’s chief negotiator, Mr. Anton Balasingham, said Sunday. (Dec 29 Tamilnet) Full Story
Four Sri Lankans detained
Madurai, Dec 26: Four Sri Lankan nationals were arrested last night when they tried to get back to Sri Lanka from Rameswaram island clandestinely, police said. Full Story
Missing divers found off Sri Lanka
Fishermen off Sri Lanka's north-western coast have rescued five European tourists who went missing on a diving trip, police say.
The tourists - two Germans, two Dutch and a Briton - were in good health, despite drifting for 24 hours at sea. (Dec 27 BBC) Full Story
`LTTE broadcasts will not reach India'
COLOMBO. DEC. 26. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam today said that there was "no cause for concern" that its broadcasts from the recently-acquired FM transmitters would reach India. Full Story
Monitors urge Lanka govt, LTTE to show restraint
COLOMBO: International monitors called on the Sri Lankan government and Tamil Tiger rebels on Friday to restrain from trading accusations and consolidate the gains of historic peace process aimed at ending the country's 19-year civil war.(Dec 27 TOI) Full Story
LTTE radio facility was first turned down - govt. statement
The government in a statement regarding the issue of a licence to the LTTE peace secretariat to operate an FM radio transmission facility stated that the LTTE request was initially turned down by the government stating it could not be granted since no exemptions or duty on VAT were being permitted by the government.(Dec 28 Island) Full Story
Read Paul Harris's letter from London
Sri Lanka Government misleads the world and the press.
Six days before my journalist's visa was to expire, I ran into Dayan Jayatilleke in Crescat Mall as I went about my weekly shopping. I happened to mention my visa was coming up for renewal. Now, I've always respected Dayan's extraordinary perception and powers of analysis and was more than mildly disturbed by his immediate, confident riposte. "No chance, Paul. Anton Balasingham has told Ranil not to renew it." (Dec 28 SPUR) Full Story
Sri Lanka protests alleged assault by drunk US marine
COLOMBO, Dec 28 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's foreign ministry has summoned the US envoy here to protest against the behaviour of a drunken US marine who allegedly attacked motorists and smashed windows, officials said Saturday. Full Story
Sri Lankan army rejects rebel charge of obstructing peace process
Dec 28 Yahoo COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - The army on Saturday rejected charges by Tamil rebels that it was undermining Sri Lanka's peace process by blocking resettlement of thousands of displaced Tamils in the war-ravaged north of the island.
"I wish to assert on behalf of all officers and men that we unequivocally support the peace process," army commander Lt. Gen. Lionel Balagalle said in a statement. Full Story
SLMM confirms missing soldier detained by LTTE
Representatives of Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) in VAVUNIYA
India confirms participation in SAF meeting
Dawn LAHORE, Dec 28: India has confirmed it will send a delegation to attend the ninth SAF Games Organising Committee meeting scheduled to be held at Islamabad on Jan 9. Full Story
LTTE set up Fascist Tamil Elam! -Leaders of Tamil political parties
The LTTE’s attempt to establish a fascist Tamil Elam after annihilating all political organizations against them has been drastically intensified say leaders of political parties such as EPDP, EPRLF (Varadhraja Perumal faction) which are active in the North and the East. (Dec 28 Lankatruth) Full Story
Fire breaks out at naval complex near Sri Lankan capital
COLOMBO, Dec 27 (AFP) - A fire that broke out at a navy facility just outside the Sri Lankan capital Friday was brought under control without casualties, officials said. Full Story
Colombo hospital to benefit from Lanka's tour match
MELBOURNE: The proceeds of Sri Lanka's Australian tour match against a Victorian Country XI on Saturday will go towards helping a Colombo cancer hospital.(Dec 28 TOI) Full Story
Gas is up!
Gas distributed by both Shell and Laugh has gone up in price. Shell increased a 12.5 kg cylinder of domestic gas by Rs. 31.00 from mid night yesterday increasing the cylinder of gas sold at Rs. 567.00 to Rs. 598.00.(Dec 28 Lankatruth) Full Story
SLMM support for Army over HSZs is 'unacceptable' - LTTE
The LTTE Friday rejected the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission's justification of the Sri Lanka Army's High Security Zones on the grounds of security as "unacceptable," saying "this adjudication simply reinforces the SLA's position on the illegal military occupation of public property." Responding to a letter sent Thursday by SLMM head, Maj. Gen. Tronde Furuhovde, the LTTE's Chief Negotiator, Mr. Anton Balasingham, said:(Dec 27 Tamilnet) Full Story
A precursor to a breakdown?
COLOMBO. DEC. 26. The continued difficulties over the issue of resettling the internally displaced persons (IDPs) and the insistence by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) that this "humanitarian concern'' be addressed urgently could well be a precursor to a possible breakdown of talks, a senior military analyst has cautioned. Full Story
Sri Lanka turn to veterans
Veteran batsmen Aravinda de Silva and Hashan Tillekeratne have been named in Sri Lanka's final squad for the forthcoming World Cup.
The pair were both members of the side which won the trophy in 1996, and the selectors are looking to them to add solidity to the middle order after a run of poor results. (Dec 27 BBC) Full Story
LTTE playing with words
We have just completed one of the holiest days known to many people, yet as long as evil remains in the hearts of many among us, we cannot even for a minute let our guard down.
By all accounts it now increasingly appears that the Tigers were only playing with words to make us believe that they have changed and we being ever so gullible believed they had accepted such ideals as federalism, one Sri Lanka etc (Dec 26 DM) Full Story
Tamil Tigers slam Sri Lanka military over disarming demand
COLOMBO, Dec 26 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger guerrillas Thursday accused the military of trying to scuttle the peace process and rejected its demand to decommission weapons ahead of a final settlement.
The rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rejected as "belligerent and hostile" a proposal by the Sri Lankan army for the guerrillas to dismantle camps in the island's north in return for a de-commissioning of weapons by the rebels. Full Story
Cautious hopes for Sri Lanka peace
International monitors in Sri Lanka have praised efforts made in the past year towards a peaceful resolution to the decades-old conflict in the island.
In an annual review, the Norwegian-led Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) also expressed concern over pitfalls facing the ongoing peace process. (Dec 26 BBC) Full Story
Sri Lanka opposition wants Norwegian envoy expelled
Colombo, Dec 26 (IANS) With the fourth round of peace talks between Sri Lanka and Tamil Tigers only 10 days away, the opposition wants facilitator Norway's envoy Jon Westborg expelled for perceived leanings towards the guerrillas.
Opposition parties led by the Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) slammed Westborg for allegedly helping the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) get a valuable consignment of radio equipment under diplomatic cargo cover. Full Story
EPDP wants LTTE to disarm
Colombo, Dec 26 (IANS) A Sri Lankan Tamil political party has urged Tamil Tiger guerrillas to give up their huge arsenal of weapons if they sincerely believe in peace. Full Story
Sri Lanka tenders to buy Jan gas oil, jet A-1
SINGAPORE, Dec 26 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's state oil company Ceylon Petroleum Corp (Ceypetco) said on Thursday it has issued a tender to buy gas oil and jet A-1 for January delivery. Full Story
Sri Lankan naval chief for Delhi
COLOMBO. DEC. 25. Sri Lanka's Navy chief, Daya Sandagiri, left for India today to hold high-level talks in New Delhi during the next two days in a move to curb smuggling of arms by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Full Story
Sri Lanka plans ID cards for expat workers
DOHA: Sri Lanka will issue special identity cards to its nationals leaving for the Middle East to take up employment.
Apart from name and photograph of the holder, the cards will also feature details like occupation and name of the employer. (Dec 25 Peninsula) Full Story
Colombo asked to explain broadcast equipment to LTTE
The Sri Lankan government is under pressure to explain how high powered radio equipment was dispatched to the Tamil guerrillas in northern Sri Lanka. Buddhist monks were the latest group to join opposition political parties to protest against the Sri Lankan government for handing over the radio equipment.(Dec 25 Gulf) Full Story
Analysis: U.S. puts Colombo in a spot over refuelling request
Sri Lanka has bought time on a broad U.S. hint that it could ask for the South Asian island's facilities for an impending attack on Iraq.
Both Foreign Minister Tyronne Fernando and cabinet spokesman Gamini Peiris have parried what is clearly a hot potato when the U.S. ambassador in Colombo last week stated that his government may ask Sri Lanka for refuelling facilities for its armed forces as they wage war on Iraq.(Dec 25 Gulf) Full Story
S.Lanka, India Navy to hold talks on preventing arms smuggling
COLOMBO, Dec 25, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- The navies of Sri Lanka and India will hold high level talks this week on a range of issues, particularly enhanced cooperation between the two navies to prevent separatist Tamil Tiger rebels from smuggling arms, The Island newspaper said on Wednesday. Full Story
Police reorganized to suit federal rule!
Sri Lanka Police Department will be re-organized to suit the federal administration which will be discussed at the next round of ‘peace’ talks said Minister G.L.Peiris, the cabinet spokesman at a media meeting held in Colombo yesterday (23rd) to announce cabinet decisions. (Dec25 Lankatruth) Full Story
Batticaloa high security zone cannot be withdrawn! - Army
The LTTE demand that the Army Head Quarters situated in the Batticaloa town and the High Security Zone should be withdrawn is vehemently rejected by the Army. (Dec25 Lankatruth) Full Story
Flag Burning Bhikkus Demand Banishment of Westborg
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 23 06:38 PM: In a spectacular demonstration of protest against the Norwegian government, the Buddhist monks of the Jathika Bhikshu Peramuna burnt a Norwegian national flag in front of the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Colombo, and walked to the Presidents House and handed over a petition to President Chandrika Kumaratunga demanding that the Norwegian Ambassador Jon Westborg should be named a persona non grata and be immediately banished for aiding separatist terrorists in the country.
[Full Story] [Previous Stories}
Tamil tigers start killing abducted political rivals
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 23 06:38 PM: An alleged abduction victim of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Poopal Pillai Alagathurai who has been missing since December 16 was found dead with severe torture marks on his body in the Mandoor lagoon, Vellavely Police in the Eastern Province said. Poopal Pillai Alagathurai (35) who belonged to a rival Tamil political party of the LTTE terrorist group, EPRLF (Vardaraja Perumal Sect) held the post of the vice chairman in the local government body of Poratheevu Pattu Pradeshiya Sabha and was allegedly abducted by the terrorists of the Tamil Tigers six days before his body was found December 21. Full Story
Martyrs' families settled in
The UNF government has decided to withdraw 8 high-security zones from the North thereby strengthening the LTTE further. With the government deciding to allow people to be settled in these high-security zones they would definitely yield to the military power of the LTTE say Security sources in the North. (Dec 23 Lankatruth) Full Story
EPRLF accuses LTTE of murdering local Tamil leader
Colombo, Dec 24 (IANS) A Tamil group Tuesday accused Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger guerrillas of abducting and murdering one of its local leaders and urged Colombo and the international community to end the rebels' terror tactics. Full Story
Sri Lankans celebrate year of peace in holiday mood
Dec 24 COLOMBO (Reuters) - Bright lights, shoppers and Santas have replaced roadblocks, police checks and war worries in Sri Lanka.
While other parts of Asia stepped up security on Tuesday against possible terror attacks, the mood in the Sri Lankan capital was festive as shoppers revelled in freedoms brought by a peace bid between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels. Full Story
Indian tea keen on partnership with Lanka
Dec 24 Yahoo; Indian tea industry is looking at closer ties with its Sri Lankan counterpart, said industries minister Sri Lanka Rohitha Bogollagama. Speaking at an interactive session organised by the Bengal Chamber of Commerce & Industry (BCCI), the minister said that he will be carrying this proposal to Sri Lanka. Full Story
Peace windfall still far off for Sri Lanka tourism
Dec 24 WADDUWA, Sri Lanka (Reuters) - Nature, culture and adventure. That's the formula Sri Lanka Tourist Board Chairman Paddy Withana hopes will fuel the tropical island's tourism industry as it begins to emerge from decades of ethnic conflict. Full Story
Vice-Chairman killed by tigers!
Supala Singham Salagathure, vice-chairman of Prathivu Pradeshiya Sabha in Batticaloa who was abducted by the LTTE organization has been hacked to death. Police found his body on the 21st abandoned in a lagoon in Vellali area.(Dec 23 Lankatruth) Full Story
LTTE use of donor funds for arms will not be tolerated - Chandrahasan
"We will neither tolerate nor allow those very destructive forces, which were responsible for the destruction of the country, to divide the donor-booty between them". This was declared emphatically by S. C. Chandrahasan of the Organisation For Eelam Refugees Rehabilitation (OFERR) and of the Protection of Eelam Tamils against Genocide (ProTeg), the two non-governmental organisations based in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.(Dec 24 Island) Full Story
Human rights to figure in next round of Sri Lanka talks
COLOMBO DEC. 23 . Sri Lankan peace negotiators will start the New Year by taking on contentious political and human issues such as power-sharing and the deployment of child soldiers in the next round of talks to be held in Thailand between January 6 and 9. Full Story
Sri Lankan leftist party demands expulsion of Norwegian ambassador
COLOMBO, Dec 23, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lanka's leftists party JVP or the People's Liberation Front, Monday called for the expulsion of Norwegian ambassador to the country.
A group of Buddhist monks affiliated to the JVP burnt a Norwegian national flag and staged a march from opposite the Norwegian embassy to the office of President Chandrika Kumaratunga. Full Story
Sri Lanka's Women Rebels Abandon Bullets for Bicycles
BATTICALOA, Dec 23 (OWSA) - In the Tamil dominated Batticaloa district in the south Asian island of Sri Lanka, aggressive women rebels of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) have embarked on an image makeover - morphing into docile champions of development. Full Story
VSAT military equipment brought by Norway missing at inspection
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 23 08:18 AM: Commenting on the latest controversy that that the terrorist group Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam has imported VSAT military satellite communication equipment with the radio transmitter the Ranil Wickremesinghe government and the Norwegian Embassy helped them to bring into the country Sri Lanka’s Defense Secretary Austin Fernando said he knew there were preparations made to bring in such additional equipment into the country by the terrorist group but at the inspection they were found missing. Full Story
Lanka forces offer phased withdrawal
Sri Lankan security forces have offered a phased withdrawal from parts of the High Security Zone in the northern Jaffna peninsula for civilian re-settlement if the Tamil guerrillas agree to disarm, withdraws artillery units and mortars and allow police full powers to operate in these areas, a local newspaper said.(Dec 23Gulf) Full Story
Sri Lankan gov't, Tamil rebels to discuss power sharing
COLOMBO, Dec 23, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- The Sri Lankan government and separatist Tamil Tiger rebels are to discuss power sharing at the next round of peace talks aimed at ending the country's long drawn out ethnic war, the government spokesman said Monday. Full Story
No formal request from US for use of Sri Lankan airspace: FM
COLOMBO, Dec 23, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Tyronne Fernando said on Sunday that there has been no formal request from the United States to use the country's airspace and ports for refueling warships in case the US launches war against Iraq, the official Daily News said on Monday. Full Story
Peace may help Sri Lankan spread wings
CHENNAI, Dec. 21. SRI Lanka is using the peace process to kick-start the economy and these initiatives are helping to attract investors especially in the infrastructure sector , according to Mr Daya Pelpola, Chairman Sri Lankan Airlines. He was here to attend the Chennai Fest and give the Sri Lankan perspective on tourism at the two-day exposition and debate. Full Story
Lanka to emulate state on water management
TIRUPATI: Sri Lanka irrigation and water management minister Gamini Jayawickrema Perera expressed willingness to have a 'working relationship' with the state government to share the expertise in the field of watershed development and management.
Interacting with the medical and health minister Kodela Sivaprasada Rao and employment generation minister B Gopala Krishna Reddy at Tirumala on Saturday, Perera complimented the state government in effectively tackling the drought. (Dec 23 tOI) Full Story
SLFP & JVP to form alternative Govt.?
Several rounds of discussions have been held between representatives of the SLFP and the JVP with reference to forming a government. Both parties have come to an understanding that the UNP regime is betraying the country and subject the masses to misery. They have agreed that the UNP government should be replaced by a people friendly and patriotic government.(Dec 22 Lankatruth) Full Story
LTTE ‘court’ raided by Police!
A kangaroo court maintained by the LTTE at Kalmune in Ampare was raided by Kalmune Police.
A LTTE member alleged to be the chief of the ‘court’ and a few other members who had been present at the time of the raid together with 252 files were taken into custody. Some members who had been present had run away. (Dec 22 Lankatruth) Full Story
Sri Lanka marks a year without bloodshed
COLOMBO, Dec 22 (AFP) - Sri Lanka is set to mark a full year without major ethnic bloodshed as government forces and Tamil Tiger rebels notch up their longest ceasefire in the decades-old separatist war, officials said Sunday. Full Story
MEP demands immediate action against Norway for its gift for LTTE
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 22 07:18 PM: The Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP) constituent party of the opposition People’s Alliance demanded immediate and drastic action to remedy the damage caused to the national interests of the people and the country’s security by Norway’s importation of high powered radio transmission equipment to aid separatism in Sri Lanka. Full Story
Australia cruise to crushing victory over Sri Lanka
Ricky Pontings' all-conquering Australians overpowered a beleaguered Sri Lankans outfit, winning a predictably one-sided contest by a massive 142 runs at the WACA on Sunday night.
During the afternoon the Australian batsman, led by stand-in opener Darren Lehmann, who scored his third one-day century, ran riot, setting the confidence-short tourists a daunting 306 target. (Dec 22 CI) Full Story
Sri Lankan gov't forces offer conditions for withdrawal
COLOMBO, Dec 22, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- The Sri Lankan government forces have offered conditions for a phased withdrawal from parts of so called high security zone in northern Jaffna peninsula for civilian resettlement, the Sunday Times said. Full Story
Westborg leaves for Oslo
Norwegian Ambassador Jon Westborg left for Oslo yesterday for urgent consultation in the face of the breaking scandal on the import of radio equipment for the LTTE by the Norwegian embassy in Colombo as diplomatic cargo.(Dec 22 Sundaytimes) Full Story
Sri Lanka reports 600 rights violations since truce
Colombo, Dec 22 (IANS) Around 600 complaints of human rights violations were reported from Tamil Tigers-controlled areas in Sri Lanka's north since the signing of a truce between the government and the guerrillas in February. Full Story
Lanka plans money transfer strategy
The Sri Lankan Foreign Employment Bureau will develop a strategy with Gulf officials to ensure the full repatriation of money earned by migrant Sri Lankan workers. This was stated yesterday by Mahinda Samara-singhe, Sri Lankan Minister of Employment and Labour.(Dec 22 Gulf) Full Story
Sri Lankan Airlines to expand operations
By T.S. Shankar , CHENNAI , DEC. 21. The Sri Lankan Airlines, along with its equity partner, Emirates, has planned to open up newer points in India. Its chairman, Daya Pelpola, was here to share the airline's plan to explain the "international experience in the tourism sector" and how it was keen to establish a firm regional-level grid to promote tourism between India and the island nation. Full Story
Norway's Ambassador Should be Declared a Persona Non Grata says JVP
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 21 07:38 AM: The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) demanded from President Chandrika Kumaratunga that the Norwegian Ambassador in Colombo should be immediately declared “ a persona non ‘grata” and expelled from the country over the scandal of importing a high powered radio transmission equipment for the terrorist group, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Full Story
SL in dilemma over help for US
The government is in a dilemma over a possible request from the US to use Sri Lankan ports and airspace to mount an attack on Iraq as the US and UK continued war preparations.(Dec 22 Island) Full Story
Conceding High Security Zones will be the beginning of the end
The focus is on High Security Zones (HSZs) as the government explores ways and means of meeting the LTTE demand for resettlement of civilians within these zones, particularly in the Jaffna peninsula, without jeopardising security. (Dec 22 Island) Full Story
Norwegian Ambassador Banished?
'Lankatruth’ understands that President Chandrika Kumarathunge is studying possibilities of banishing Mr. Jon Westborg, the Ambassador of Norway for exceeding diplomatic norms to import extremely powerful transmission equipment and handing them over to the LTTE and thereby violating the law of the country and acting in a way to disrupt the sovereignty of Sri Lanka.(Dec 21 Lankatruth) Full Story
LTTE must be disarmed before Security Forces are withdrawn from High-Security Zones-Tilvin Silva
For the Security Forces to be withdrawn from high-security zones LTTE must be disarmed first says Mr. Tilvin Silva, General Secretary of the JVP. Mr. Silva made this statement at a media meeting held at Hotel Nippon today.
The government, kneeling in front of the LTTE, is giving in to everything the LTTE demands alleging it is to keep the peace process going.(Dec 21 Lankatruth) Full Story
Police investigate explosives link to blast in Sri Lanka
Police and the Government Analyst departments in Sri Lanka are probing whether high-powered explosives usually used for making bombs were stored in a fire cracker shop in the capital, where at least 24 persons were killed and more than 50 sustained burn injuries in a fire last Tuesday.(Dec 21 Gulf) Full Story
Ministers Sons Make Night Clubs into Battle Grounds
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 21 08:26 PM: While the ordinary people of the country were starving without adequate foods and suffering to get clothes for this festive season of Christmas, well fed and well dressed sons of the Ministers of the Ranil Wickremesinghe government were hanging out in the opulent night clubs of the big hotels making them into virtual battle grounds charged People’s Alliance spokesman Dr. Sarath Amunugama . Full Story
- LTTÉ orders Govt.
LTTE had asked the government to make the decision to withdraw security Forces from high security zones before tomorrow (21st). ?Lankatruth? had published earlier that the LTTE had made a request at the Defense sub committee, established under the peace process of the government and the LTTE, to withdraw Security Forces from high-security zones. (Dec 20 Lankatruth) Full Story
A tactical shift
The LTTE's decision to explore a federal structure does not seem to be motivated by a genuine reorientation of its political goals and approaches, but appears to be a move that has been made with definite short- and long-term objectives in view.
THE concept of federalism has re-entered Sri Lankan political discourse in a big way after the third round of talks between the Sri Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) concluded on December 5. (Frontline Dec 21, 2002 - Jan 03, 2003) Full Story
US to seek Sri Lankan facilities in case of war with Iraq: envoy
COLOMBO, Dec 20 (AFP) - The United States was likely to seek Sri Lanka's permission to fly over its airspace and use its ports in the event of war with Iraq, US ambassador Ashley Wills said Friday.
Wills told reporters here that war with Iraq was a "last resort," but it was "conceivable" that Washington would seek Sri Lanka's help to refuel US military aircraft and warships in the Indian Ocean island. Full Story
Legal action against transmitter to LTTE?
Strongly accusing Norway for collaborating with the LTTE in boosting the group’s clandestine radio - Voice of Tigers (VOT) - the PA yesterday said it was considering legal action against the government.(Dec 21 Island) Full Story
Sri Lankan PM calls for regional free trade
COLOMBO, Dec 20, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Friday called for the establishment of a free trade area among a grouping of five countries in Asia to strengthen their economic cooperation. Full Story
Peace process must ensure unity: Ranatunga
MANGALORE DEC. 20. It is important that Sri Lanka remains united and does not split for any reason, an MP from that country, Arjuna Ranatunga, said today. Full Story
Gas works fire caused by LTTE bomb
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 20 07:38 AM: Police sources in Colombo said that the Gas Work Street’s roaring inferno which may have caused the deaths of an estimated crowd of more than twenty people might have caused by a high powered LTTE bomb which was hidden in the fire crackers shop. Full Story
Tamil tigers abduct five students in Batticaloa
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 20 04:31 PM: Tamil parents of five young students complained to the Eravur Police that their sons had been abducted by the terrorists of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam while the students were sight seeing the raging waters of a flood devastating the Eastern Province December 18. Full Story
England triumph again as Sri Lanka subside
England completed their second successive victory in the VB triangular series, beating a lacklustre Sri Lanka by 95 runs at the WACA. After starting badly England were indebted to Paul Collingwood (100) and Craig White (48) for enabling them to reach 258, and Andrew Caddick then took three top wickets to maintain the revival and put England on course for a win. (Dec 20 CI) Full Story
Internal crisis rocks Chandrika's party
President Chandrika Kumarat-unga's Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), the main constituent party of the opposition People's Alliance (PA), has been rocked by an internal crisis with a section of the party trying to embarrass opposition leader Mahinda Rajapaksha by making indirect claims that he was plotting to assassinate the President.(Dec 21 Gulf) Full Story
Indian Oil Corp to build diesel, jet fuel pipeline to Sri Lanka
NEW DELHI, Dec 20, 2002 (Asia In Focus via COMTEX) -- The state owned INDIAN OIL CORP (IOC) plans to build a pipeline to Sri Lanka for the export of diesel and jet fuel. Company sources said officials were looking at various options for laying a 30-km long pipeline from Tamil Nadu to northern Sri Lanka. Full Story
Sri Lanka to attract Indians with religious tourism
Colombo, Dec 20 (IANS) Bolstered by a sharp rise in Indian tourists, Sri Lanka is drawing up plans to pursue Indians with religion and culture-based packages and attractive discounts. Full Story
Sri Lankan Muslim party leader issues ultimatum to dissidents
COLOMBO, Dec 19, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Crisis in Sri Lanka's main Muslim party has deepened when party leader Rauf Hakeem issued an ultimatum Thursday to dissidents of the party, who have been trying to oust him, to toe the party line or face expulsion. Full Story
'ICRC scaling down operations in Sri Lanka'
NEW DELHI DEC. 19. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is pursuing the cases of 10,000 missing persons in Sri Lanka for which they have records since 1992. Full Story
Lanka rolls out fiscal red carpet for IndianOil
NEW DELHI: Fortune 500 oil refining and marketing major IndianOil Corporation has secured major financial concessions from Colombo, practically giving it a free run of the growing Sri Lankan petrore
Tigers given preference over
Temple of the Tooth!
The media Ministry of this government which has given a license to the tiger terrorists who are determined to separate the country to maintain a radio link rejected a request made to offer programmes to the Buddhists requesting donations to restore the Temple of the Tooth after the tiger terrorists attacked the Temple of the Tooth said Mr. Ranjan Wijeratne, Diyawadene Nilame of the Temple of the Tooth. (Dec 19 Lankatruth) Full Story
Sri Lankans ready to cop flyers from England
Sri Lanka is expecting the short-pitched deliveries to fly again from England at the WACA Ground today, but it is more apprehensive about its World Cup matches in Kenya, where a hotel explosion claimed 16 lives last month.
Team manager Ajit Jayasekera admitted yesterday that Sri Lanka's three-game program in Kenya in February-March had created sufficient anxiety for an official communique to be lodged with the controlling World Cup body in South Africa. (Dec 19 The age) Full Story
Sri Lankan teen returns to pursue medical dream
She came to Calgary six years ago, a scared teenager steeling herself for life-altering surgery.
This week, 19-year-old Dilanie Anandappa arrived in Calgary again, this time to pursue her dream of becoming a doctor. (Dec19 Canada.com) Full Story
Sri Lankan Tamil rebels accused of abductions in east
COLOMBO, Dec 19, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lanka's separatist Tamil Tiger rebels are accused of abducting at least five youths in the eastern district of Batticaloa, police said Thursday.
The police in Batticaloa, about 300 kilometers from the capital Colombo, said that among the five are two students of a technical college, two who have just finished school and another university student. Full Story
Power-sharing 'must ensure Muslim rights'
A leading Sri Lankan Muslim who attended this month's Oslo peace talks between the government and the Tamil Tigers warned that failure to ensure the rights of Muslims in the proposed power sharing arrangements may derail the entire process. (Dec 19 Gulf) Full Story
Sri Lanka Telecom Signs Clarity as the Clear Choice for Operational Support
SYDNEY, Australia, Dec 19, 2002 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Award winning OSS product company Clarity, recently signed a contract to supply and implement Sri Lanka Telecom's next generation Operational Support System. Full Story
Sri Lanka floods force 100,000 families from their homes
Derc19 COLOMBO (Reuters) - Torrential rains throughout Sri Lanka's north and east forced nearly 100,000 families from their homes and disrupted transport in the region, local media said on Thursday. Full Story
IOC plans pipeline to Sri Lanka
Indian Oil Corporation, IOC, is planning to construct a pipeline to Sri Lanka to export diesel and aviation turbine fuel, or jet fuel to the island nation. "A team of officials is studying various options of laying a 30-km long pipeline from Tamil Nadu to northern Sri Lanka," highly placed company sources said, reports PTI. (Dec19 Yahoo) Full Story
Sri Lanka asylum rejects return from the Netherlands
COLOMBO, Dec 18 (AFP) - The Netherlands government has repatriated 45 Sri Lankans who had either illegally entered the country or failed to obtain political asylum, the Dutch embassy said Wednesday Full Story
Buddha's relics moved to ancient capital Oudong of Cambodia
PHNOM PENH, Dec 19, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Buddha's relics in Cambodia were relocated to the ancient capital of Oudong on Thursday, 45 km northwest of Phnom Penh, at the company of King Norodom Sihanouk and Queen Norodom Monineath. Full Story
LTTE openly demands one-party polity for Jaffna
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 16 06:50 PM: While increasing violent activities against its rival the Eelam People’s Democratic Party (EPDP) by “manipulated mobs” the terrorist group the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) officially announced that it wanted the Tamil political party to be ousted from any political activity from the Jaffna peninsula. Full Story
India turns down invitation for Kilinochchi
India will not take part in an UNHCR-summoned meeting in Kilinochchi tomorrow (20) to discuss a range of issues relating to the proposed repatriation of Sri Lankan refugees in India on a voluntary basis, an Indian spokesperson said yesterday.(Dec 19 Island) Full Story
Embassy cover for LTTE equipment `unwise' - Nowegian scholar
A visiting Norwegian scholar on conflict resolution Johan Gultung told an audience on Tuesday that the Norwegian Embassy's action of giving cover to the importation of telecommunication equipment to the LTTE radio station Voice of Tigers was "unwise". He said that it could become a "very hard voice". (Dec 19 Island) Full Story
India, Sri Lanka to move closer in petroleum sector
COLOMBO. DEC. 18. India and Sri Lanka are set to move closer in the crucial area of energy security, with plans on to build an oil pipeline linking the two neighbours. The proposal, still in its early stages, is to develop an offshoot from the proposed pipeline between Chennai and Madurai to reach Colombo, M. Nageswaran, managing director of the Lanka IOC (LIOC), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Indian Oil (IOC) said here today. Full Story
Protest against police attempt to collect data on scribes
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 18 07:30 PM: Prajathanthra, a movement for social democracy in Sri Lanka has demanded the Inspector General of Police to immediately withdraw his circular to Police stations to open up files on journalists living in those particular areas. Full Story
16 dead in Sri Lanka shopping centre fire
16 dead in Sri Lanka shopping centre fire COLOMBO, Dec 18 (AFP) - At least 16 people were killed and another 17 injured when a fire swept through a shopping area in the Sri Lankan capital, doctors and rescue workers said Wednesday.
Rescue workers deployed in Colombo's Pettah area to clear the rubble following the overnight fire pulled out six bodies from the rubble of a four-storeyed building Wednesday, taking the death toll to 16, officials said. Full Story
Indian oil to invest $100 m in Lanka
COLOMBO: India's state-owned oil company on Wednesday announced plans to invest $100 million in Sri Lanka's energy sector in partnership with the island's main oil monopoly.(Dec 18 TOI) Full Story
Lanka confirms spotting ship with 'warlike items'
Colombo: Sri Lanka on December 18 confirmed that a mysterious ship, suspected to be carrying weapons, had been spotted on international waters last week, and said prompt action by its Navy prevented the off-loading of any shipment in its territorial waters.
Australia washed Sri Lankan cricket shoes free
Australian officials cleaned shoes of Sri Lankan cricket players when they arrived in the country for a tri-nation tournament, the Australian High Commission (embassy) here said.(Dec 18 HT) Full Story
Maldives renews offer to host talks
The Maldives has renewed its offer to host peace talks between Sri Lanka and the Tamil guerrillas of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).(Dec 18 Gulf) Full Story
Sri Lanka records 1.7 mln dollar revenue on foreign employment
COLOMBO, Dec 18, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- The Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) recorded a revenue of 1.73 million US dollars in the first 10 months of this year, a 75 percent increase over the same period last year, according to the bureau's recently released annual performance review. Full Story
Chinese Premier hails trade pact with Sri Lanka as historical
BEIJING, Dec 18, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji sent a congratulatory message to the Government of Sri Lanka Wednesday on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the signing of a trade pact between the two countries. Full Story
Sri Lanka fire kills 10
COLOMBO, Dec 18 (AFP) - At least 10 people were killed and another 17 wounded when a fire swept through a shopping area in the Sri Lankan capital overnight, doctors and rescue workers said Wednesday. Full Story
Relax security otherwise we boycott peace talks committee say tigers
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 16 06:50 AM: The long-drawn campaign of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to get rid of the high security zones in Jaffna Peninsula took a new turn when LTTE’s Eastern Commander Karuna announced that the group would boycott the de-escalation and normalization sub-committee meetings between them and the government if a plan was not submitted to the army commander by the Northern Command of the army before December 21 enabling the resettlement of refugees in high security zones. . Full Story
Threats prevent opening of new library in Jaffna
A group of unidentified men have prevented the opening of a newly constructed library in Jaffna town. The incident occurred on the morning of December 15 the Sri Lanka Army website reported.
The new library constructed by the Pradeshiya Sabha (Local Authority) was to be opened by a Pradeshiya Sabha member of the Eelam People?s Democratic Party (EPDP).(Dec 17 Govt website) Full Story
Lanka progresses towards peace, but implementation a different story
One of the bloodiest and longest-running conflicts in Asia held steady on the path of peace in 2002, but questions have arisen as to whether Sri Lanka's ruling party has the political clout to implement a lasting deal with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).(Dec 18 Pioneer) Full Story
Thousands homeless after Sri Lanka floods
OLOMBO, Dec 17 (AFP) - Over 70,000 families have been made homeless in eastern Sri Lanka due to floods after heavy rains, local officials said Tuesday.
The district of Batticaloa was the worst affected with over 60,000 families forced to leave their flooded homes, officials said, adding that heavy rain had lashed the region for four straight days.
Government officials said they had mobilised volunteers to help provide flood victims with temporary shelter and food.
Police top 'corrupt' South Asia list
A survey on corruption levels in the five biggest South Asian countries shows people see police as the worst offenders among seven basic public services. (Dec 17 BBC) Full Story
Sri Lanka has made important contributions to Maldives? current development: Gayoom
MALE, Dec 17 (HNS) President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom on Monday said that Sri Lanka had made important contributions to Maldives? current development. Full Story
England end 14-game drought with Sri Lanka win
Dec17 BRISBANE (Reuters) - Half-centuries by Nasser Hussain and Alec Stewart and an improved all-round bowling performance helped England break a 14-match run without victory and beat Sri Lanka by 43 runs on Tuesday. Full Story
Tigers set deadline for lifting security zone
Tamil guerrillas have set a deadline for the Sri Lankan government to remove selected 'High Security Zones' in the northern Jaffna peninsula and declared that non-implementation of the demand could hamper the current peace process.(Dec 17 Gulf) Full Story
LTTE hardens stand on demands
COLOMBO. DEC. 16. After a relatively smooth run, the Sri Lanka peace talks are headed towards the more difficult phase with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) saying that it would stay away from future meetings to discuss de-escalation unless the Government met three conditions by December 31. Full Story
U.N. Studies Children Fighting in Wars
Dec16 UNITED NATIONS (AP) - U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan submitted a report to the Security Council that identifies warring parties that recruit children to fight, in an attempt to send a message that the international community is watching. Full Story
Controversial British film highlights Sri Lankan conflict
London, Dec 16, 2002 (PR Newswire Europe via COMTEX) -- London, December 16 /PRNewswire/ -- A film that has caused widespread controversy and speculation following its world premier last month is to be screened in London's West End on December 19. Full Story
Govt. officials dumb over suspected LTTE
Government officials were unable to comment regarding a suspected mystery weapons ship spotted over 100 nautical miles north-east of Mullaitivu on Friday.
The Indian Navy had located a ship allegedly belonging to the LTTE carrying weapons and fuel but had not intercepted the vessel in accordance with international law. (Dec 17 Island) Full Story
War-ravaged Sri Lankan region gets its first woman de-miner
COLOMBO, Dec 16 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's war-ravaged northern peninsula of Jaffna has its first female de-miner -- a 19-year-old woman who has joined the drive to remove millions of mines, a pro-rebel website said Monday.
Niroja Srirajakumar will be deployed for clearing land mines in the peninsula which has seen heavy fighting between government forces and Tamil Tiger guerrillas, the Tamilnet website said. Full Story
Lankan delegation visits Integral Coach Factory
CHENNAI: A high-level delegation from Sri Lanka led by the Island's Railway Minister Tilak J Marapane on Monday visited the Integral Coach Factory here to explore the possibilities for buying railway coaches for Sri Lanka.(Dec 16 TOI) Full Story
India expresses concern over broadcasting facility for Tigers
India has expressed its serious "concern" to Sri Lanka over the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam acquiring modern equipment for its clandestine Voice of Tigers broadcasting station via Norwegian diplomatic channels, the Sunday Times newspaper reported yesterday.(Dec 16 Gulf) Full Story
Sri Lankan PM reassures rights of Muslims in east
COLOMBO, Dec 16, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has assured that the rights of the Muslim community in the east of the country will be secured in a political solution to the country's 19-year ethnic conflict, the state-run Daily News said on Monday. Full Story
LTTE kill to conceal plans!
Ganesh Moorthi Thilakaraj who was murdered by the pistol clique of the LTTE on the 11th was an important member of the intelligence unit stationed at Millennium city housing scheme which was disbanded by the UNF government as soon as they came to power to fulfil a promise made to the LTTE. (Dec 16 Lankatruth) Full Story
Demoralising coverage, says Rana Viru Seva Authority
The Ran Viru Seva Authority in a statement said "it was good to see and hear Prabakaran’s war heroes day speech this year in its entirety, in the electronic media.(Dec16 Island) Full Story
LTTE given licence for FM station
COLOMBO. DEC. 15. The controversy over broadcasting equipment imported for the Voice of Tigers (VoT) has deepened with media reports that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was granted a temporary licence for a private FM radio station. The LTTE, the Sunday Leader said in a report today, was given the licence last month to broadcast at an assigned frequency of 98 MHz, subject to the condition that the station would be at Kilinochchi, with a coverage of 20 km radius and an altitude of 75 metres. Full Story
Infiltrated LTTE killers in Colombo start work
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 14 07:16 PM: The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had stationed hundreds of professionally trained marksmen and suicide bombers in the capital city of Colombo to destroy enemy targets and already they had begun work, police sources said. Full Story
Media minister says it was OK to give radio transmitters to tigers
By Walter Jayawardhana reporting from Los Angeles:
Decemberr 15 07:15 PM: While admitting there had been a delivery of equipment for the Voice of Tigers to acquire radio transmission facilities through Colombo’s Norwegian embassy and government of Sri Lanka the Media Minister of the Colombo government said, there was nothing wrong with it. Full Story
Lanka govt issues licence for LTTE radio station
Colombo: Sri Lanka has issued a licence to the Liberation Tigers of Tail Ealam (LTTE) to set up a broadcasting station in the Northern town of Kilinochchi and assigned an FM (frequency modulation) band, reports 'The Sunday Leader'.
The licence was issued to the rebel group's 'peace secretariat', "To maintain and operate a private broadcasting station for which equipment worth more than $ 100,000 was imported by the LTTE last month", 'The Sunday Leader' said.(Dec 15 II) Full Story
Sri Lanka to buy four jet trainer aircraft from Israel, China
COLOMBO, Dec 15 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's air force has finalised plans to buy three jet trainer aircraft from China and a fourth from Israel, official sources said Sunday.
The air force seeks to purchase three Chinese-made K-8 planes and an Israeli Kfir trainer to augment its depleted fleet, the sources said, at an estimated cost of 25 million US dollars. Full Story
India extending support: Lankan minister
Sri Lanka's Defence and Civil Aviation minister Tilak Marapona on Sunday said that India was extending its full cooperation to Sri Lankan government in finding an amicable solution to the Tamils issue and bringing peace to the island nation. (Dec 15 HT) Full Story
India tops in using Lanka for illegal immigration
Colombo: For years, it has been a predominantly domestic phenomenon in Sri Lanka - large numbers of aspiring emigrants adopting illegal means to reach Europe, but recent trends indicate that Indians are also keen to use the island nation for human smuggling. (Dec 15 II) Full Story
Former umpires say Murali's action worse than ever
SYDNEY (Reuters) - Two former Australian test umpires have criticised cricket bible Wisden for selecting Sri Lankan Muttiah Muralitharan as the most valuable test bowler in history. (Dec 15 Yahoo) Full Story
India voices concern over VOT
The Government of India has expressed serious "concern" to the Government of Sri Lanka over Tiger guerrillas acquiring modern broadcasting equipment for its clandestine Voice of Tigers broadcasting station via Norwegian diplomatic channels.
The Sunday Times learns that India's Foreign Secretary Kanwal Sibal who was on an official visit to Colombo early this week raised the matter during a meeting with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.(Dec15 Sunday Times) Full Story
Sri Lanka de-escalation panel moves to dismantle military camps
COLOMBO, Dec 15 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's warring parties meeting in Norwegian-brokered peace talks have begun moves to dismantle military camps as a confidence-building measure in efforts to end decades of ethnic bloodshed, diplomats said Sunday.
Sri Lanka's top defence official, Austin Fernando, and senior rebel military commander Karuna led discussions Saturday, Norwegian diplomats said. Full Story
Sri Lankan Tamil rebel leader briefed on Swiss model of federalism
COLOMBO, Dec 15, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Representatives of Sri Lanka's separatist Tamil Tiger rebels attending the third round of peace talks in Norwegian capital Oslo earlier this month have briefed their leader Velupillai Prabhakaran on the Swiss model of federalism which they want to copy for their self-rule, the Sunday Observer said. Full Story
Lanka not pressing panic button after loss: Jayasuriya
BRISBANE: Captain Sanath Jayasuriya on Sunday said his Sri Lankan team were not about to press the panic button after their heavy 102-run defeat to Australia A in a warmup one-day match here.
Sri Lankan PM admits flaws in ceasefire agreement with Tamil rebels
COLOMBO, Dec 14, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Saturday admitted flaws in his government's ceasefire agreement with separatist Tamil Tiger rebels reached between the two side in February this year in a bid to end the country's 19-year ethnic conflict, The Island newspaper said on Sunday. Full Story
Mani defence ridiculous: Swamy
CHENNAI Dec. 14. Describing the statement by the Periyar Dravidar Kazhagam activist, Kolathur Mani, "exonerating" the forest brigand, Veerappan, in the murder of the former Karnataka Minister Nagappa as "ridiculous", the Janata Party president, Subramanian Swamy, called on the Karnataka and Tamil Nadu Governments to give a "fitting reply" to the bandit and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Full Story
500 timber containers sent abroad!
A load of Teak logs valued at Rs. 130 million is to be exported to India. This timber had been seized by the customs earlier when arrangements had been made to export it illegally. (Dec 14 LAnkatruth) Full Story
Norway, get out!
Patriotic disabled soldiers Union had written to the President asking her to cease all dealings with the Norwegian Ambassador. The Union had made this appeal quoting the instance where the Ambassador had used diplomatic immune to get down sophisticated communication equipment to the tiger organization.(Dec 14 LAnkatruth) Full Story
Police probing Colombo visit by MDF ultra
By K.T. Sangameswaran , CHENNAI , DEC. 14. The arrest of Muslim Defence Force extremists has led investigators to probe the Colombo visit by one of them. The police suspect that the purpose was to explore the possibility of giving training to the MDF cadres on the island. Full Story
Sri Lanka, Tigers look at returning war displaced
OLOMBO, Dec. 14 - Sri Lanka and Tamil Tiger rebels stepped up efforts on Saturday to demilitarise areas in the north of the island ravaged by nearly two decades of ethnic war.
Representatives from the two sides met for seven hours on the Jaffna peninsula to discuss ways to resettle people into areas controlled by the military. Full Story
Lankan parliament yet to get on with Tigers
COLOMBO: The Tamil Tigers are still officially "at war" with the government of Sri Lanka but that has not stopped the two sides sitting down to agree a federal solution to the island's ethnic crisis. (Dec 13 DAWN) Full Story
Australia A beats Sri Lanka by 102 runs
BRISBANE, Australia (AP) -- Jimmy Maher's century inspired Australia A to a 102-run win over Sri Lanka Saturday in a limited-overs cricket match at the Gabba. Full Story
Sri Lanka peace sub-committees to resume sessions
COLOMBO, Dec 14, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Two peace sub-committees agreed between the Sri Lanka government and the Tamil Tiger rebels will resume their sessions, a source from the government peace secretariat said Saturday Full Story
Sri Lankan Prime Minister to visit Maldives
COLOMBO, Dec 14, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will leave for Male, capital of the Republic of Maldives, on Monday for a one-day visit at the invitation of the Maldivian government, the Prime Minister's office said Saturday. Full Story
Include disarming of LTTE in talks, says SLFP
COLOMBO. DEC. 13. Sri Lanka's main Opposition party, the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), today urged the early inclusion of the sensitive issue of disarming the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in the negotiations. Full Story
Navy apprehends LTTE arms ship!
A large ship transporting arms had been encircled by the Sri Lanka Navy today at bout 8.00 p.m.
According to Naval sources a boat on a routine surveillance mission had first observed this ship. The officials manning the naval boat had informed the camp in Trincomalee and later the officials had informed the Air Force. (Dec 14 Lankatruth) Full Story
US trade official to visit Sri Lanka
OLOMBO, Dec 13 (AFP) - The US Assistant Secretary of Commerce, William H. Lash, is due to visit Sri Lanka next week to discuss promoting bilateral trade and investment, the US embassy here said Friday.
"The purpose of the visit is to discuss bilateral trade relations and Sri Lanka's investment climate," the embassy said in a statement. Full Story
Pondy official to take part in Delhi meet on fishermen
By Our Staff Reporter , Pondicherry , Dec. 13 . An official of the Pondicherry Administration will participate in the deliberations to be held at the instance of the Union External Affairs Ministry in New Delhi on December 17 to discuss the problems of fishermen between India and Sri Lanka Full Story
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