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US Congress Considers Human Rights in Sri Lanka - Sri Lanka Monitoring Accountability Panel Submitted a Statement
Published Date: 21/06/2018 (Thursday)
Today, 20 June 2018, the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations of the US Committee on Foreign Affairs heard evidence on “Human Rights Concerns in Sri Lanka.” The Sri Lanka Monitoring and Accountability Panel (MAP) submitted a written statement to the Subcommittee to provide information useful to its task. The MAP pointed out to the Subcommittee that:
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US quits UN human rights council – 'a cesspool of political bias' Nikki Haley says council is ‘protector of human rights abusers’ that targets Israel in particular and ignores atrocities elsewhere
Published Date: 20/06/2018 (Wednesday)
The US is withdrawing from the United Nations human rights council, the Trump administration announced on Tuesday, calling it a “cesspool of political bias” that targets Israel in particular while ignoring atrocities in other countries. The US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, said she had traveled to the council’s headquarters in Geneva a year ago to call for reforms, to no avail. “Regrettably it is now clear that our call for reform was not heeded,” Haley told reporters at the state department. “Human rights abusers continue to serve on, and be elected to, the council.”
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Army warns legal action against harbouring absentees, deserters
Published Date: 20/06/2018 (Wednesday)
Sri Lanka Army yesterday said that they are continuing countrywide operations to arrest its absentees or deserters and warned legal action against those who would be harbouring them. Issuing a statement Sri Lanka Army Headquarters appealed all concerned in earnest to desist from aiding or abetting the army deserters or absentees, harbouring or using them for any anti-social acts since such misdeeds as the Army could not hold any responsibility for such involvements. “It has been noted that sections of Army deserters or those absent without leave (AWOL), some of them still in hiding, are reportedly involved in committing criminal acts, robberies and various anti-social acts in different parts of the island.
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Paul Sathiyanesan appointed Goodwill Ambassador for Refugee Week 2018
Published Date: 19/06/2018 (Tuesday)
The Tamil Information Centre (TIC) welcomes the appointment of Paul Sathiyanesan as a goodwill ambassador for the 20th anniversary of the refugee week. Paul who himself is a refugee from Sri Lanka has become a powerful voice for the forcibly displaced across the world and a powerful example of their resilience and determination to rebuild lives and positively contribute to host communities. He is a deeply inspiring person. Through his powerful personal story, Paul represents the
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Lost in time Second mass grave discovered in Mannar
Published Date: 19/06/2018 (Tuesday)
They found the bones in the sand. The discovery of human skeletal remains were first made in March, when a private soil inspector observed bone-like material found in a sample of soil sent to him for analysis. The soil samples were sent to the inspectors, by the Central Engineering Consultancy Bureau which was charged with conducting field inspections of land plot 35, Medawachchiya-Talaimannar Road, Mannar in the latter part of 2017. By this time, the previous building, a one storey Sathosa supermarket that stood on this large plot of land, in the heart of Mannar’s Grand Bazaar – an ancient gateway to the island district and its famous port, had been demolished. The demolition was to pave the way for a new three storey construction for a new Sathosa supermarket. However, with the suspicion of the bone fragments found in the soil,
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SLHRC to probe Jaffna shooting
Published Date: 19/06/2018 (Tuesday)
The Sri Lanka Human Rights Commission has launched an investigation into the incident where one person died in a shooting carried out by Police in Mallakam, Jaffna. The Commission has launched the investigation following a complaint lodged at the Jaffna District office. Accordingly members of the Commission have visited the crime scene and have obtained witnesses accounts.
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Oman Post has halted mail service to this South Asian country
Published Date: 19/06/2018 (Tuesday)
Oman Post has announced that it will temporarily stop receiving any mail to be sent to Sri Lanka, “due to unforeseen circumstances”. In a statement online, the postal agency said, “We would like to inform you that Oman Post will stop accepting P.O. mail to Colombo, Sri Lanka, due to unforeseen circumstances until further notice.” An official from Oman Post told Times of Oman that the decision came from the Sri Lankan authorities: “We received an email that Sri Lanka Post will not be accepting any international mail until further notice.”
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'Clergy in prison must be treated equally'
Published Date: 19/06/2018 (Tuesday)
The Centre for Human Rights in Sri Lanka says the 18 Buddhist, Hindu, Catholic and Islamic priests who are serving prison sentences should be treated equally under the provisions of the Prisons Ordinance. Issuing a statement, the centre said the country's applicable law on prisoners is the Prison Ordinance. The centre said if there is a need to provide exceptions for the clergy or other groups,
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Rs.120 Mn spent on 60-member delegation to UN
Published Date: 19/06/2018 (Tuesday)
It was revealed in Parliament today that more than Rs.120 million had been spent for the 60-member delegation which accompanied the President for the United Nations General Assembly sessions in 2016. This was revealed in response to a question asked by MP Udaya Gammanpila on the cost incurred by the government. State Minister Niroshan Perera said the 60-member delegation included several ministers, media personnel and president's staff. The MP asked whether it was a part of good governance to take a large delegation and at such a high cost.
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Polonnaruwa Inferno ’58 ; 60 Years on...
Published Date: 19/06/2018 (Tuesday)
By K K S Perera When a government, however popular, begins to help racial or religious emotionalism merely because it is a harsh and loud-noised demand made on it, and then interferes in the management and enforcement of law and order for the advantage of its favourites or to win the applause of a crowd, however out of control it may be, disaster is certain. As rumors spread the town was buzzing with people. They collected in groups in streets, exchanging news about an invasion of Polonnaruwa by Tamils from Trincomalee and from Batticaloa. Land development, Irrigation department and Government farms labour gangs made up a regiment of Sinhalese battalion, and were on the rampage beating up Tamil labourers and officials, looting and raping. Polonnaruwa had just a small police station.
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Sri Lankan south’s lost ties with south India
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
The time has come to renew cultural bonds between the Sinhalese people and the art of south India What connects music composer M.S. Viswanathan to a group of Sinhalese people shaking a leg at a weekend party? An all-time hit Sinhala song that was inspired by his rustic 1970s composition ‘Ennadi rakkamma pallakku nelippu’. No celebration or gathering is complete without the Sinhala super-hit ‘Mama gannami karakara bandala’, set to the same tune. Similarly, Ilaiyaraaja’s ‘Machanai paartheengala’ has a popular Sinhala counterpart ‘Sudu asu pita nagala’, widely performed in stage shows and heard in parties.
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Sri Lanka has never had traitors as committed and enthusiastic as current govt - MR
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says that the amendments proposed to the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act of 2002 are clearly aimed at assisting foreign courts in the trial of Sri Lankans for offences allegedly committed in Sri Lanka. “This is the latest betrayal by the yahapalana government,” he said, adding that the manner in which the government has been implementing the demands of their foreign patrons should also be taken note of by the public. He claimed that the proposed amendment will widen the applicability of the Act to every country that is a party to any international Convention that involves criminal matters.
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Five arrested over sword attack in Jaffna, one shot dead
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
Five suspects were arrested by the police in connection with a sword attack incident at Mallakam Junction in Tellippalai, Jaffna last night. Police Spokesman SP Ruwan Gunasekara said a 33-year-old man was killed after police opened fire at a group who attempted to assault two policemen with swords. He said the two policemen of the Chunnakam Police Station who were on their way to attend a police duty at Telippalai area had noticed a clash between two groups who were attacking each other with swords and clubs.
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Seven suspects scanning for hidden LTTE gold nabbed
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
allegedly hidden by the LTTE in Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu during the last stages of the war were arrested by Vavuniya Police STF Officers at Nochchimotai. Vavuniya on June 15 morning. The officers seized the scanner and the vehicle. The detection was made during a search operation at a checkpoint. Police said investigations revealed that the scanner valued at nearly Rs. 5 million could detect any underground metal.
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Set up separate court to hear cases involving Buddhist Monks: Champika
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
be set up to hear court cases involving Buddhist monks, Jathika Hela Urumaya General Secretary Champika Ranawaka said. He said this in response to a journalist at a news conference held today. Mr. Ranawaka said the opinion of the Mahanayaka Theras should be sought with regard to cases involving Bhikkhus and that the Constitution had provisions to establish a separate court and as such it would be best to set up separate courts to hear court cases involving Buddhist monks.
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Govt. spends Rs.8.3 bn on embassies in 2017: AG
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
Auditor General Gamini Wijesinghe said today the government had spent Rs.8.3 billion to maintain embassies last year but that there was no mechanism to assess the benefits gained for the country. He said with the assistance of all Sri Lankan embassies the Auditor General's Department was preparing a report on the diplomatic service. “We spend billions of rupees to maintain embassies. But there is no mechanism to assess the benefits or the services rendered to the country by way of improving its image or the promotion
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UK look to invest in bridges & hospitals in SL
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
UK State Minister of Trade Policies Greg Hands says the UK is expected to look into trade and investment opportunities in order to construct rural bridges and hospitals in Sri Lanka. The statement was made during a discussion held with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe who is on a tour of London, England. The UK State Minister had directed Premier Wickremesinghe's attention over providing British expertise on building public and private partnerships in the development of the Colombo Port City. The discussion also focused on the investment opportunities in Sri Lanka's mineral resources and the UK's ability to provide financial technology.
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If Modi Assassination Plot Letter Is Fake, Indian Democracy Is in for Dangerous Times
Published Date: 18/06/2018 (Monday)
A two decade-long history of using false allegations, faked evidence, videos and news to manipulate public sentiment proves that the BJP will stop at nothing to ensure its return to power. If Modi remains true to form, then this is only the start of a witch hunt designed to remove rivals from the field. The letter allegedly recovered from the house of Rona Wilson, the Delhi-based public relations secretary of the Committee for Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP), which details a meeting in which Maoist leaders ‘decided to assassinate Prime Minister Narendra Modi’, needs to be treated with the utmost of scepticism.
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Let’s stop spies and subcontractors from hiding behind the law
Published Date: 16/06/2018 (Saturday)
‘Many British Sikhs are calling for a public inquiry into British involvement in the Golden Temple massacre in 1984.’ Photograph: The India Today Group/India Today Group/Getty Images As an investigative journalist who has used the Freedom of Information Act to expose the questionable conduct of numerous government departments, I welcome the news that parliament will today consider extending the law. The proposed changes would mean that private companies such as Serco and G4S, as well as housing associations, would have to disclose documents about their vast and lucrative public service contracts. After countless outsourcing scandals, from the collapse of Carillion to the preventable tragedy at Grenfell Tower
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Former member of World Tamil Movement, Canada Questions President Maithiripala Sirisena: What Happened To The LTTE Cadres Who Surrendered To The Army At Vadduvakal On May 18, 2009?
Published Date: 15/06/2018 (Friday)
The UN Human Rights Council had adopted Resolution No.30/1 of October 01, 2015 and co-sponsored by Sri Lanka that called for an international investigation into war crimes with foreign judges, prosecutors and investigators. Clause 6 of Resolution 30/1, inter-alia, states as follows: ‘Welcomes the recognition by the Government of Sri Lanka that accountability is essential to uphold the rule of law and to build confidence in the people of all communities of Sri Lanka in the justice system, notes with appreciation the proposal of the Government of Sri Lanka to establish a judicial mechanism with a special counsel to investigate allegations of violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law, as applicable; affirms that a credible justice process should include independent judicial and prosecutorial institutions led by individuals known for their integrity and impartiality; and
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ONUR’s ‘Heal the Past Build the Future’ project expanded to 14 districts
Published Date: 15/06/2018 (Friday)
The Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) has taken steps to expand ‘Heal the Past Build the Future’ project in 14 districts more to create a discourse on reconciliation at grass root level. The pilot project of this program was conducted in Jaffna, Anuradhapura and Ratnapura earlier. The chosen new districts are Ampara, Mannar, Galle, Kalutara, Kilinochchi, Kurunegala, Matara, Moneragala, Nuwara-Eliya, Mullaitivu, Batticaloa, Trincomalee, Mullaitivu and Vavuniya. The overall objective of this unique initiative is that physical and human infrastructure at the
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Eid Moon Sighted in Maldives, Brunei & Fiji; Crescent Unseen in Sri Lanka
Published Date: 15/06/2018 (Friday)
(News June 14) Muslims in the South Asian nations of Sri Lanka, Maldives, Brunei and Fiji await the sighting of Eid moon today. If the Hilal crescent will be sighted today, Eid-al-Fitr will be celebrated tomorrow. If the moon remains unsighted, the festival will be celebrated on Saturday. Stay tuned here for the live news updates of Eid moon sighting from Sri Lanka, Maldives, Brunei and Fiji. For live updates on Eid moon sighting in Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore, read here. Meanwhile, attempts are also underway to sight the crescent moon in the neighbouring Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. According to the fatwa issued by Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, Eid will be celebrated in Australia on Saturday. However, other Muftis may differ.
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Disinheriting Adivasis – The Gadchiroli Game Plan: Vidhya A
Published Date: 15/06/2018 (Friday)
In a statement issued on April 16th 2018, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) claimed that the ‘National Policy and Action Plan’ to combat Left Wing Extremism (LWE) is ‘a multi-pronged strategy involving security and development related measures’[1]. This new policy, apparently in place since the NDA government came to power at the centre, claims to have ‘zero tolerance towards violence coupled with a big push to developmental activities so that benefits of development reached the poor and vulnerable in the affected areas’[2]. The statement talks of substantial improvement in the LWE scenario by indicating reduced incidents of violence over the last four years. Within a week of this statement to the press, several Maoists are killed in an alleged encounter in Gadchiroli district of Maharastra and, then, in Bijapur district of Chhattisgarh[3]. The Maharashtra state police immediately issued press notes and organised a press conference on April 24th declaring the operation an unmitigated success. A week later, Chhattisgarh
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Let us keep an eye on Uncle Sam
Published Date: 14/06/2018 (Thursday)
Anyone who has read Noam Chomsky’s ‘What Uncle Sam really wants’ would not get too excited when a US President, Secretary of State or Ambassador talks about democracy. Neither would they lose any sleep over such worthies speaking in somber tones about individuals, parties or governments they dislike. Chomsky’s book, published in 1993, traces four decades of US intervention in all parts of the world. It is all about the use of subversion and force for economic and political hegemony. To achieve various ends the USA often supported violent regimes and dictatorships, Chomsky shows. For all the bleeding-heart talk about democracy, good governance and peace, the USA has had no qualms over propping up or placing in power, tyrants, autocrats, military juntas and brutal monarchies.
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Crime of the century; 152 million child labourers
Published Date: 14/06/2018 (Thursday)
World spiritual leaders have warned us that those who abuse children or indulge in child labour would and should be thrown into the deepest ocean with a millstone tied rounds their necks. Children are devastatingly honest and innocent that is why the heavenly realms comprise people who have the honesty and innocence of children. Seen in this light many of our leaders -- political, social, business and even religious leaders -- appear to be sadly lacking in honesty, innocence and a spirit of sincere, sacrificial and selfless service to the people, especially those caught in the poverty trap of a wicked world. Therefore such leaders face a fate that is too horrible to be imagined.
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