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Initial Crossover Talks Fruitful: PM To Show Majority In House: All Set For A United National Front Government
Published Date: 12/02/2018 (Monday)
The discussions to form a United National Front government, with the support of over 10 SLFP Cabinet ministers, are successful, our sources within the Temple Trees conformed. The defection of SLFP ministers to the United National Party will allow Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to show a simple majority in the House. "The initial discussions have been successful. They have agreed to join the United National Front, led by the UNP," a highly placed UNP source said. It is learnt, however, that some SLFP members will sit in the opposition and align themselves with the Joint Opposition.
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LG Election was a wake up call- Mangala
Published Date: 12/02/2018 (Monday)
Minister of Finance and Mass Media Mangala Samaraweera says the 2018 Local Authority Election is a timely wake up call for the good governance government. Issuing a statement Minister Samaraweera said the public has communicated that the good governance government has not done enough to ensure election promises made during the 2015 Presidential and General Elections. The Minister stressed the message issued by the public has sunk deep into the United National Party and therefore the party is committed to take drastic measures to fulfil the promises made three years ago and to maintain the public trust.
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Several SLFP Ministers Start Talks With UNP While Some Plan To Sit In Opposition: SLFP Heading Towards Natural Death?
Published Date: 12/02/2018 (Monday)
Several Cabinet Ministers representing the SLFP have expressed willingness to join the UNP, sources within the UNP confirmed, a short while ago. This comes in the wake of a landslide defeat suffered by the SLFP at the Local Government polls. It is learnt that these Ministers are not willing to join the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramun, mainly due to personal reasons. "They have opened up channels of communication. Some of them were previously in the UNP. So, they can come back to the UNP at any time," a senior party spokesman said.
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Book Review: The Vavuniya Diaries By Neville Jayaweera
Published Date: 12/02/2018 (Monday)
This slim memoir spanning a few months in 1971 is noteworthy for its insider view on the failed first insurrection of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP—Peoples Liberation Front), or more exactly its repression somewhere remote from Colombo and the southwest, by a principal participant. The author was then Government Agent, that is the top-most administrative official, in undivided Vavuniya (before Mullaithivu had been carved from it).
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One On One Meeting Between President And PM Today: Discussions To Seize Power In Many LG Bodies As United Front
Published Date: 12/02/2018 (Monday)
One of one meeting between President Maithripala Sirisena and Ranil Wickremesinghe is scheduled to take place today, informed political sources said. the meeting comes in the wake of the defeat suffered by the ruling alliance at the Local Government election. The discussion is aimed at striking an agreement between the two main parties to seize power in a number of Local Government bodies as a united political force.
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SLPP sweeps wards in South; North goes to ITAK
Published Date: 11/02/2018 (Sunday)
But coalition among opposition parties can tilt balance in councils UNP comes second, leading in Colombo count, Sirisena’s UPFA comes a distant third The recently formed Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) led by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa seems to have swept a majority of the local government wards in the south at yesterday’s countrywide polls, according to early results that began trickling in late last night.
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Fighting for migrant workers
Published Date: 11/02/2018 (Sunday)
Missing, or rather, not enough attention has been given to the rights of female migrant workers and their status in society in the just-concluded election campaign for local authorities. Our attention was drawn to this one morning when Kussi Amma Sera, preparing the morning cup of tea, said: “Mahattaya, apey pitarata rassawata yana lamei gena kisi kathawak nehe me chande kaale?” “Eh,” I asked but before waiting for a long, drawn response during a busy week, moved to my computer since this thought, in fact, had occurred to me, too.
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Key SLFP members expected to resign, MR opens his doors
Published Date: 11/02/2018 (Sunday)
Key Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) members are expected to resign from the Government in the wake of the thumping defeat at the Local Government elections. SLFP sources said that once the final results are officially announced the SLFP members will indicate their intention to resign from the Government. Sources said that at least seven SLFP members have now indicated they will step down from their Ministerial positions
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Rajapaksa faction beckons Sri Lanka Freedom Party members; says govt mandate ended
Published Date: 11/02/2018 (Sunday)
A 56 -member faction of Sri Lanka Freedom Party supporting ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa has made overtures to government members to join them to form an administration, after a new party backed by them swept local bodies at Saturday's polls. "We are asking the members of the SLFP who are supporting the government to think seriously about their political future," Ratnapura Parliamentarian Pavithra Wanniarachchi said. Sri Lanka Poduja Peramuma has won a landslide in yesterday's local election though official results are yet declared. Wannirarachchi said out of 340 local the SLPP was confident of having a majority on their own in at least 243.
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Sri Lanka ruling alliance suffers defeat in local polls
Published Date: 11/02/2018 (Sunday)
Sri Lanka's ruling coalition is on course to suffer a shocking defeat in local elections as the party backed by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa is set to register a landslide victory. At 1:30pm local time (19:00 GMT), with most results in, the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) had won 44.05 percent of the vote. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's United National Party (UNP) garnered 31.65 percent while the President Maithripala Sirisena's Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) came a distant third with 9.52 percent of the vote.
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Japanese Academic: Sri Lanka needs a good balancing act
Published Date: 11/02/2018 (Sunday)
Sri Lanka, strategically positioned in the Indian Ocean, is well in the spheres of attention of the world powers.China, on the one hand, has linked up with Sri Lanka for Strategic Partnership Cooperation. Envisaged here is the collaboration for China’s Belt and Road Initiative that seeks to enhance greater connectivity with the rest of the world. Against the backdrop, there is the emerging ally of the United States, India, Japan and other Western countries to counterbalance power over the world’s crucial sea lanes that bestride Sri Lanka in the Indian Ocean region.
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Diaspora Tamils urge British government to shame and sack “slit throat” Sri Lanka diplomat
Published Date: 10/02/2018 (Saturday)
Angered by a public death threat against Tamil demonstrators in London, Eelamist diaspora groups in a rare display of solidarity have urged the British government to strip Sri Lanka’s military attaché in the United Kingdom of his diplomatic status and declare him a “Persona non Grata”. Leading Tamil diaspora organisations spurred into action by Minister Councillor (Defence) Aandige Priyanka Indunil Fernando gesturing thrice to slit the throats of demonstrators in London who opposed the Sri Lanka government celebrating 70 years of independence while Tamils in the island were persecuted, have petitioned the British government on the 9th of February. In the detailed despatch to Home Secretary Amber Rudd and Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson the organisations have requested the British government to “declare the Sri Lankan Military Attaché Brigadier Priyanka Fernando a Persona non Grata for committing a serious offence under British law, abusing diplomatic immunity in the UK and committing war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sri Lanka and therefore, to curtail his leave to remain in the UK.”
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Udayanga debacle in Dubai: Fresh team flies to Lyon to get ‘Red Notice’
Published Date: 09/02/2018 (Friday)
France to issue a “Red Notice” to enable the arrest of Sri Lanka’s former Ambassador to Russia, Udayanga Weeratunga, who is now in Dubai. A prime suspect in the alleged mass fraud involving the procurement of MiG 27 fighter jets from Ukraine in 2006, he was detained by Interpol officials at the Dubai International Airport. He was released after a counsel hired by him argued that the arrest had been wrong since it was made on the basis of an Interpol “Blue Notice,” which was only an advisory.
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The quest for true freedom
Published Date: 04/02/2018 (Sunday)
Freedom, liberty and independence. Three words that seemingly have the same meaning, but differ in their interpretation. Sri Lanka gained independence from the British rulers on February 4, 1948, exactly 70 years ago. This was a turning point for freedom in the history of our nation. Independence is not just a facility that we gain from someone. It is also a state of mind. We must really feel free and independent as a nation to reap the full benefits of the struggle for independence that succeeded in 1948. Sri Lanka has gone through a tumultuous 70 years, mainly as a result of the shortsighted and ethnic centred policies of our politicians, most of
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Sri Lanka’s Opportunity to Leverage High-end Tourism with Reclaimed Beaches
Published Date: 04/02/2018 (Sunday)
The recent proposal of the Megapolis Ministry to reclaim the sea abutting the Galle Face Green and to extend it Southwards to Dehiwela is a commendable idea. In addition, the Expressway coming into the City Center with links to other Expressways going North and South, it will be a realistic move. At the City end, the Expressway linking the Port, Port City, and the underground access to the city hotels and the Marine Drive going South is appropriate as there would be a North - South link and would ease traffic circulation. The reclamation of the sea takes time. In Rio De Janeiro in Brazil, reclamation of the
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Udayanga detained at Dubai airport
Published Date: 04/02/2018 (Sunday)
Former Sri Lankan Ambassador to Russia Udayanga Weeratunga had been reportedly detained at the Dubai Airport this morning, while in transit to the United States, sources said. He was to be handed over to the Dubai Police by the immigration officers. Udayanga Weeratunga, Sri Lanka’s former envoy to Russia was accused of being the centre of a probe into the acquisition of MiG-27 fighter jets from Ukraine, while he was also accused of supplying weapons to anti-Government forces.
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Arjun Aloysius and Kasun Palisena remanded
Published Date: 04/02/2018 (Sunday)
The owner of Perpetual Treasuries Limited Arjun Aloysius and CEO Kasun Palisena who were arrested by the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) earlier this morning, were taken to CID headquarters to record their statements , said Police Spokesman. They were arrested by CID officers who arrived at their respective residences in Colombo, today. On Friday, the Colombo Fort Magistrate’s Court named former Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran, his son-in-law Arjun Aloysius and Perpetual Treasuries CEO Kasun Palisena as suspects in the CID’s investigation into the bond scam.
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Japanese unaware of the ‘real’ Sri Lanka, visiting business leader says
Published Date: 04/02/2018 (Sunday)
Akio Mimura was 11 when Sri Lanka’s former President J.R. Jayewardena stood up for Japan at the San Francisco international peace conference in 1951. World War II had been over for six years and the allied powers had been deliberating how vanquished Japan would be punished. They wanted the country on its knees, paying reparations. Mr.Jayewardena, a minister in Mr.D.S. Senanayake’s government, was the lone voice among the 51 nations gathered that day backing the vanquished. Quoting Buddha, “hatred cease not by hatred but by love”the statesman called for a free and independent Japan and that it should not pay a heavy price that would harm its economy.
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Sri Lanka Celebrating Independence In Chains Of Its Own Making
Published Date: 04/02/2018 (Sunday)
While Sri Lanka "celebrates" 70 years of independence from British colonial rule this month, its sovereignty is being threatened as never before since gaining independence in 1948 – tempting one to remark that Sri Lanka is celebrating 'independence in chains'. The strategically placed Indian ocean island is an important lynchpin in China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) which western powers – especially the United States and Britain – are keen to sabotage as its success would end their hegemony in the Indo-Pacific region and beyond.
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Setting up the OMP: Delays, Dilution and Deal-Making
Published Date: 03/02/2018 (Saturday)
The Office on Missing Persons (OMP) is one of the four mechanisms that the government promised in its ‘comprehensive approach to dealing with the past’. While the OMP is the only mechanism on which any formal progress has been made in the 28 months that have passed since the government announced its plan; even this has not yet been formally constituted and operationalised. Each step of the process thus far to establish the OMP has been marked by slow progress, a regrettable lack of transparency, poor engagement with victims and troubling political actions to undermine the independence of the institution.
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70 years with the ‘filthy rich’
Published Date: 03/02/2018 (Saturday)
This Blue-Green coalition government will go on stage at Galle Face Green this Sunday to celebrate 70 years of Independence from British colonial rule. This same coalition, established after the 2015 January Presidential Election, celebrated 67 years of independence three years ago, with a simple ceremony, also at Galle Face Green. Three years from then, the ceremony has grown into a grand show as any, the Rajapaksas held to exhibit their power using the Independence Day celebrations. Though proud we are of the Independence gained (rather received), after 130 years and more of colonial rule, we don’t seem to have achieved anything greater than what the British left us.
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Sri Lanka ranked among world's 10 worst countries for personal freedom
Published Date: 03/02/2018 (Saturday)
Sri Lanka has been ranked among 10 worst countries in the world for personal freedoms in a global index of human freedom, just behind Zimbabwe, due to damaged institutions of liberty, though the country scored better on economic freedoms. Sri Lanka was placed 150 on personal freedoms, out of 159 countries, ahead of Cameroon (151), Congo and Saudi Arabia, Burundi and Iran, but behind Zimbabwe at 149 in the 2017 Human Freedom Index compiled in association with the Fraser Institute, a Canada based think tank. In the region, India was placed at 103 Bangladesh 138 and Pakistan was ahead of Sri Lanka at 148.
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TNA to avoid Independence Day Celebrations
Published Date: 03/02/2018 (Saturday)
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) yesterday said its members would not participate in the Independence Day National Celebration due to local government election campaign activities in the Trincomalee District. Opposition Leader and TNA MP R. Sampanthan has officially informed this to the Independence Day Celebrations Committee. TNA sources said MP Sampanthan would participate in the LG election public meetings and rallies in Trincomalee in February 4.
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20,000 disabled voters at LG Polls
Published Date: 03/02/2018 (Saturday)
Chairman of the Elections Commission (EC) Mahinda Deshapriya said that out of 15,760,867 registered voters, who are entitled to cast their votes at the 2018 Local Government Polls, around 20,000 come under the category of disabled voters. He added that being handicapped would not be a hindrance to cast votes at any election under any circumstance. Deshapriya noted that the EC has advised all Grama Sevaka Officers, Divisional Secretaries and returning officers to make facilities available for disabled voters to exercise their franchise at the upcoming Polls.
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Country will never return to dictatorship - Mangala
Published Date: 03/02/2018 (Saturday)
The country which was rescued from dictatorship by electing the Common Candidate will never be turned back, Finance and Mass Media Minister Mangala Samaraweera pointed out yesterday. He also pointed out that the country which was isolated in the international arena, regained its due recognition after the victory of the Common Candidate. Minister Samaraweera made these observations at a rally held at Weligama, supporting UNP Local Government election candidates.
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