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BBS General Secretary arrest warrant withdrawn
Published Date: 21/03/2018 (Wednesday)
Colombo Chief Magistrate Lal Ranasinghe Bandara has ordered to withdraw the arrest warrant against General Secretary of the Bodu Bala Sena Organisation Galagodaththe Gnanasara thera. The order to withdraw the arrest warrant was issued as Gnanasara thera surrendered to court through an Attorney today. Court ordered to release Galagodaththe Gnanasara thera on an additional bail of 2,500 rupees.
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' Port city ' stands tall despite civil society protests
Published Date: 21/03/2018 (Wednesday)
• The Budget Appropriation Bill of 2018 in which he claimed that Rs. 1200 million alone is allocated to minimize coastal erosion caused due to the Port City project • The poison percentage in the air would increase by about 40% due to the drastic increase of the air pollutant The sand supplied at the international bulk rate is supply at $200 per ton which represents a value of $2.8 billion • Another problem is the increase of land area from the 1st EIA report from 236 hectares to 269 hectares The People’s Movement against the Port City (PMAPC) has since 2011 been protesting against the construction of the Port City and continue to thoroughly denounce the Government’s decisions and actions in relation to the same. A press conference and seminar were held at the Methodist Hall by the ‘Creation Care Desk’ of the Methodist Church on February 28 in collaboration with the People’s Movement to oppose the Port City. These
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Track Record Of TNA – A Sad Saga
Published Date: 21/03/2018 (Wednesday)
“But I don’t have a very good track record with royalty. My dress fell off in front of Prince Charles at the Prince’s Trust, so I’m just living up to my reputation.” – Kate Bush, British Singer The UNP has suffered severe losses at the Local Authority Elections. The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has likewise sustained significant setbacks, not only electorally, but politically as well. The losses of the TNA (read, ITAK, the prima donna, calling all the shots in the Alliance) are not sporadic; but seem pervasive across the entire electoral landscape of the Tamil heartland in the North-East.Compromising on core ideals whilst cohabiting with the Sirisena-Ranil government has cost the TNA/ITAK dearly.
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Impunity: A cat closing its eyes drinking milk
Published Date: 20/03/2018 (Tuesday)
The title from my school days refers to a cat thinking that when it sees no one, it is safe. Likewise, our rulers seem to think that blocking out Facebook, WhatsApp, etc. ensures that no one can see us or our friends bashing our Muslim brethren and enjoy that barbaric moment as we act out our Mleccha (barbarian) instincts. With firm action, the riots should have been stopped on day one. Instead, social media showed the police, the STF no less, laughing at one of the victims. It is argued that the blackout is really to prevent rogues spreading hate speech. Wrong! When hate speech is engaged in, we can track down the rogues and bring down the law on them. In
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Omp is for reconciliation not to satisfy anyone else
Published Date: 20/03/2018 (Tuesday)
The Office on Missing Persons (OMP) is one of the main transitional justice mechanisms, the others being a truth commission, an office on reparations and a judicial mechanism to investigate allegations of violations and abuses of human rights. The OMP intends to promote justice and bring closure to those whose loved ones have gone missing. With the recent appointment of the Chairman and the members to the OMP, hopes are now anew that the truth will surface. In an interview with the Daily mirror its newly appointed Chairman, Saliya Pieris PC, who is a former member of the Human Rights Commission, stressed that the OMP is not a punitive mechanism, but a mechanism to find the whereabouts of loved ones who have gone missing and provide relief.
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Speaker Jayasuriya urged not to certify protection against disappearances Bill
Published Date: 20/03/2018 (Tuesday)
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya has been urged by the Joint Opposition (JO) not to certify the hastily enacted Bill for the protection against enforced disappearances. JO spokesman Colombo District MP Gamini Lokuge yesterday said that they had requested Speaker Jayasuriya to allow a fresh debate and a vote on the Bill. Addressing the media, at former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Nelum Mawatha, Battaramulla office, Lokuge said Speaker Jayasuriya had allowed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremsinghe to manipulate the legislative process.
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Sirisena urged to ‘rise as a statesman’
Published Date: 20/03/2018 (Tuesday)
Reminding President Maithripala Sirisena of the “unstinted support” that Tamils extended to him in 2015, senior Tamil politician and Leader of Opposition R. Sampanthan on Monday urged him to “rise as a statesman” and resolve Sri Lanka’s ethnic problem. “We want a statesman to rise in this country who can say, ‘I resolved the country’s national question’ and we think you can do it, we think you should do it and it is our expectation that it will be done,” he said, speaking at an event in Jaffna, where he shared the stage with Mr. Sirisena.
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Monks, troops help Muslims after race riots in Sri Lanka
Published Date: 20/03/2018 (Tuesday)
Buddhist monks and army troops have begun rebuilding and renovating scores of properties damaged during a series of anti-Muslim riots near Kandy in Sri Lanka's Central Province, an area known for its scenic tea plantations. The government announced a nationwide state of emergency after two people were killed in the sectarian violence, which also saw nearly 450 Muslim-owned homes and numerous shops damaged. As racial tensions boiled over, 60 vehicles were torched and more than 20 mosques attacked as violence erupted in key cities across the nation.
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Will support no-confidence vote against PM – JVP
Published Date: 20/03/2018 (Tuesday)
The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) yesterday (19) said that it would support the Joint Opposition’s no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on the basis that he had allegedly protected thieves in both the current and former Governments by making deals with them. Speaking to Ceylon Today, JVP Propaganda Secretary Parliamentarian Vijitha Herath said that the JVP has not seen the no-faith motion which the JO is going to bring to Parliament yet, but the JVP would support the motion if it mentions the said facts.
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Faction against efficient judiciary to be revealed
Published Date: 20/03/2018 (Tuesday)
Deputy Minister Karunarathna Paranawithana says the faction represented by those objecting the measures to make the legal system efficient will be revealed promptly. Speaking in Parliament, the Deputy Minister said there is a faction that is attempting to disrupt the initiatives of the government of increasing the efficiency of the judiciary and speed up the process of bringing the guilty to book. Deputy Minister Karunarathna Paranavithana said they are filing cases in court in opposition of punishing the guilty and increasing the efficiency of the judiciary.
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Sri Lanka must enhance fiscal income to offset narrowing external drains: Fin Min
Published Date: 19/03/2018 (Monday)
Sri Lanka’s Finance minister says the island must optimize utilizing local resources with a well-managed and efficient tax system as a pro-growth catalyst. My contention is that the new Inland Revenue Act will bring a paradigm shift to taxation in this country that is in line with our policy of updating complex legislations to achieve our development goals in this 21st century, Mangala Samaraweera, Finance Minister said. The minister was addressing a seminar organized by the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) to educate the public on the new Inland Revenue Act that will come into effect from April 01st 2018.
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301 suspects detained over Kandy violence
Published Date: 18/03/2018 (Sunday)
Police have so far arrested 301 suspects connection with the recent bout of violence in Kandy. Of the suspects now being held, 196 are from the Kandy District. Out of the total, 168 suspects have been arrested under emergency regulations imposed on March 6. Meanwhile, the Government announced that from Monday, it will begin paying compensation to people affected by the violence, while a cleanup of the area is now being undertaken by the army. Several ministers will work together to provide compensation payments.
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Silent heroes give glimmer of hope How Muruthalawa withstood recent violence
Published Date: 18/03/2018 (Sunday)
The recent tension between two communities paved the way for anti-Muslim violence which first arose in the Ampara District and then took an unexpected turn spreading to the areas of the sacred city of Kandy where more than 500 shops, residences, vehicles and mosques belonging to Muslims were damaged. While hatred and violence set the area ablaze, there were acts by silent heroes which gave glimmer of hope and showed that there was still some humanity left. Ven. Waturakumbure Dhammaratana Thera, the Chief Incumbent of the Nelligala International Buddhist Centre speaking to Ceylon Today shared the story behind how Muruthalawa town with both its Buddhist and Muslim communities remained safe despite the turmoil in other areas of the Central Province.
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Lankan delegation heads to Geneva tomorrow
Published Date: 18/03/2018 (Sunday)
A high-level Sri Lankan delegation heads to Geneva tomorrow, where it will attempt to show progress on its human rights commitments, amid mounting calls for more political will to implement reconciliation and accountability measures set out in UNHRC Resolution 30/1 that the country co-sponsored in September 2015. In Geneva, Sri Lanka will unveil a host of measures taken over the past year to reckon with a violent past in line with its UN Human Rights Council commitments, including the operationalisation of the Office off Missing Persons, the enactment of the Enforced
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JVP to launch anti-racism movement
Published Date: 18/03/2018 (Sunday)
The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) is set to launch a political movement against racism and communalism, its leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said. The party has taken this decision following the recent troubling events which unfolded in Kandy leading to loss of life, injuries and extensive property damage. According to Dissanayake, the national movement will commence with a series of rallies aimed at eradicating racism and communalism. “We have prepared several rallies to launch
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Perhaps We Can Eat Soup with a Knife: Prospect Theory and the Use of Conventional Military Strategies in Counterinsurgency Operations
Published Date: 18/03/2018 (Sunday)
Combating insurgencies with conventional forces has long been regarded as being, to paraphrase T.E Lawrence’s colorful formulation, comparable to eating soup with a knife (Lawrence, 1922, 53). Indeed, the inutility of force with regards to combating a phenomenon that primarily exists in the minds of a target population has been noted by figures from General Rupert Smith to General David Petraeus, the latter articulating this principle as a central premise upon which he built his population centric theory of counterinsurgency in FM-3-24 (Petraeus, 2006, 60-100) (Smith, 2005, 40). Within the context of this argument, any effort to destroy an insurgent militarily by a policy of attrition or annihilation ignores the insurgents innate capacity to trade space for time, avoiding the strengths of a conventional
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‘Can’t compare Sri Lankan refugees and Rohingya’
Published Date: 17/03/2018 (Saturday)
Sri Lankan Tamil refugees, who fled the war in the island nation in the 1980s, stood on a “different footing” from the Rohingyas who seek shelter from persecution in native Myanmar. Any comparison between the two is misconceived, the Centre has told the Supreme Court. The Centre was responding to comparisons made by the Rohingya in the Supreme Court between their plight and the “relief facilities” given to the Sri Lankan Tamil refugees. The Rohingya have sought the same aid and the benevolence India had shown the Sri Lankan Tamils.
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War against LTTE was won because of Muslims, says Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne
Published Date: 16/03/2018 (Friday)
Sri Lanka's Chief of Defence Staff, Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne this week condemned Sinhala people responsible for attacking Muslims in Kandy, saying they were traitors for attacking the Muslim community who helped the military in the fight against the LTTE. He said, "we are living today thanks to them, because as you all know our intelligence during our conflict time was entirely run by our Muslim community."
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New agency puts spotlight on China's foreign aid
Published Date: 16/03/2018 (Friday)
The formation of a new high-level Chinese government agency to oversee foreign aid programs highlights Beijing's interest in increasing the use of assistance as a key instrument of diplomacy in support of its global political and economic agenda. Under an administrative reorganization that is to be voted on by the National People's Congress, the nation's rubber-stamp parliament, on Saturday, the Office for International Development Cooperation will be formed under the State Council, China's cabinet. It will bring together functions now split between the foreign affairs and commerce ministries and other departments.
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Japan provides aid to Sri Lankan health services
Published Date: 16/03/2018 (Friday)
The project is being financed to improve the medical facilities and equipment in tertiary healthcare institutions and training centers for medical staff in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka has signed a Rs. 15 billion loan agreement with Japan to improve Sri Lanka's health and medical services. This development took place following the Japan-Sri Lanka summit meeting in Tokyo recently
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Sri Lanka Prime Minister assures to enhance economic and trade cooperation with China
Published Date: 15/03/2018 (Thursday)
Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Thursday has assured China of greater economic and trade cooperation and affirmed to tackle the practical difficulties of China-Sri Lanka mega-projects cooperation. The Chinese Embassy in Sri Lanka said in a statement that on March 14th, Chinese Ambassador Cheng Xueyuan held a working consultation with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe in the Temple Trees.
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Young “Saffron Buddhists” and their “anti Muslim patriotism”
Published Date: 11/03/2018 (Sunday)
Most now talk about anti Muslim violence being transported from Ampara to Digana. It wasn’t really from Ampara to Digana, but from Aluthgama-Beruwala to Mahiyangane, to Gintota and then to Ampara and for now to Digana. Five very open anti Muslim conflicts within less than 05 years that begins with MR rule, extending into this unique ‘Yahapalana’ (good governance) rule. Next can be anywhere a new “excuse” could be found and used for another round of violence. And in all instances, there is a Temple and a few Buddhist monks involved and taking the lead.
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China aid comes with no strings attached—envoy
Published Date: 11/03/2018 (Sunday)
CHINA has never asked to use natural resources as collateral in loan agreements with other countries, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson has said. Geng Shuang was responding to a question regarding an article from a Chinese newspaper Global Times which cited a Chinese scholar’s view on China’s official preferential loan to the Philippines. The article mentioned the Chinese scholar’s view that China was willing to provide assistance as the Philippine government proposed a large-scale investment plan to develop its economy.
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Small town rallies after asylum seeker family carried off in dawn raid
Published Date: 11/03/2018 (Sunday)
Tamil asylum seekers Nadesalingam and Priya and their Australian-born daughters, Dharuniga and Kopig, who were taken into immigration detention after a dawn raid on 5 March The close-knit community of Biloela in central Queensland has been shocked by an early morning Australian Border Force raid on a Sri Lankan asylum seeker family – including two Australian-born children – over a visa expired by a single day.
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Problematising Hindi as the ‘Self’ and English as the ‘Other’
Published Date: 10/03/2018 (Saturday)
In the light of the ongoing prioritisation of Hindi by the central government, the projection of Hindi as the “self” is problematic for several reasons. Three “self–other” binaries are discussed in this regard: Hindi–Hindu as “self,” Urdu–Muslim as “other”; Sanskrit-laden Hindi favouring upper caste Hindus as “self,” vernacular Hindi dialects often represented by the lower castes and classes as “other”; and fi nally Hindi as the epitome of “desi self,” English as “foreign other.” The controversy surrounding Hindi signs in the Bengaluru Metro has brought the issue of Hindi chauvinism in India to the forefront. On being asked to comment on the matter, the current government’s then Urban Development Minister, Venkaiah Naidu, referred to Hindi as the “national language,” adding,
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