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Norway to support resettled communities in Myliddy
Published Date: 13/11/2017 (Monday)
UNDP Sri Lanka Country Director, Jorn Sorensen and the Ambassador of Norway to Sri Lanka Thorbjørn Gaustadsæther signed a partnership agreement to extend the Government of Norway’s support to the recently resettled communities in the Jaffna District, with an emphasis on the Myliddy Harbour areas. Under this partnership, UNDP Sri Lanka, through the support of the Government of Norway, will promote local economic development through enhanced market-based livelihood
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Floods in Jaffna force out over 1,700
Published Date: 13/11/2017 (Monday)
The Disaster Management Centre (DMC) says over 1,700 residents of the Jaffna District have been evacuated to safe locations following the floods experienced in the area due to the incessant rains. Deputy Director and Media Spokesman of DMC Pradeep Koddippili said all units have been informed to remain on the alert for possible disaster situations which may arise. He noted that
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More than 2,000 women to be elected to local councils
Published Date: 12/11/2017 (Sunday)
More than 2,000 women representatives will be elected to local government bodies under the newly introduced mixed electoral system that calls for at least 25 percent women representation in local councils. Elections conducted under the previous Proportional Representative system returned only 82 women members to all the local councils which now stand dissolved. The Gazette notification giving the number of members to each council was issued yesterday.
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Dissenting voices rock TNA
Published Date: 12/11/2017 (Sunday)
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA), currently the biggest coalition of Tamil political parties mainly representing the Tamil people of the North and East, is yet again facing a tug-of-war, as the Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) has waged a war of words with the Ilankai Tamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK). It is not the first time that the coalition had had misunderstandings among constituent parties. Since its initiation in 2001, there had been splits within the ranks of TNA. The Alliance was
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Sri Lanka President shifts gear on war crimes
Published Date: 12/11/2017 (Sunday)
President Maithripala Sirisena, who had previously maintained that Sri Lankan troops never committed excesses, acknowledged at the weekend that some troops were responsible for crimes at the behest of politicians. Addressing military officers at the army hospital auditorium, the President said no one will be punished for prosecuting the war against separatist Tamil Tiger rebels, but those who carried out excesses will be punished.
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Indecent police officers must resign: IGP
Published Date: 12/11/2017 (Sunday)
“Officers who don’t speak decently, understand people’s problems humanely and act maliciously should resign from their posts as they have no place in the Police Service,” IGP Pujith Jayasundera said. He was addressing the gathering at a social service programme held at the Mallawapitiya Elders’ Home where the Police, Buddhist and religious officers donated a set of equipment for the use of its inmates on November 11.
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Wigneswaran urges aging Tamil leaders to step aside
Published Date: 12/11/2017 (Sunday)
With the EPRLF led by former MP Suresh Premachandran deciding to contest future elections on its own, NPC Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran today urged Tamil leaders, who were over 60 years, to move aside and allow the younger generation to take up politics. Incidentally, the Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) is one of the original constituent parties of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA)
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Sobitha Thera’s just society; where are we?
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
In this new millennium, the Buddhist prelate who made the most significant contribution towards the rebuilding of a just and fair society was Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Nayaka Thera whose second death anniversary was commemorated on Wednesday, at Ape Gama in Battaramulla, with President Maithripala Sirisena presiding. After the end of the war in 2009, when the Ven. Sobitha saw that politicians were abusing and misusing public funds on a large scale and good governance was deteriorating, the prelate began the National Movement for a Just Society. He stepped forward at that time with courage and conviction. His brave mission led to the dramatic events of November 2014 when the then Minister Maithripala Sirisena
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UN’s Sooka attacks Shavendra, GR and 58 Division
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
The military yesterday expressed shock and dismay at South African member of UNSG’s Panel of Experts (PoE) Yasmin Sooka calling the wartime General Officer Commanding (GoC) of the celebrated 58 Division Maj. Gen Shavendra Silva a notorious war criminal. The PoE comprised former Attorney General of Indonesia Marzuki Darusman, Steven Ratner of the US and Sooka.
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Former Justice Minister counters allegations, seeks joint Lanka-UK probe
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
Former Justice Minister Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakse, MP, yesterday alleged that a fresh high profile attempt was being made to secure asylum for bogus refugees at the expense of Sri Lankan government. President’s Counsel Rajapakse pointed out that the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government was being targeted by those who had been engaged in the lucrative project to secure political asylum status for economic refugees.
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Sri Lanka says it will investigate alleged torture of Tamils
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
Sri Lanka says it will investigate allegations by more than 50 ethnic Tamils that they were abducted and tortured by police or army soldiers long after the end of the island nation's civil war. An Associated Press investigation published Wednesday offered detailed testimony from 20 of the men, along with photographs of injuries they said were sustained when they were raped, branded or beaten repeatedly in custody. All spoke on condition of anonymity for fear
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President asserts troops will not be taken before war tribunals
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
On Thursday, 9th November, president Maithripala Sirisena today asserted that Army soldiers will not be taken before war tribunals. The President gave the assurance when he addressed a gathering of more than 350 Commanding Officers (COs), Adjutants and Regimental Sergeant Majors (RSMs) of the Army this evening at the Colombo Army Hospital auditorium. Kapila Waidyaratne, Secretary Defence and Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander of the Army extended a warm welcome to the President on his arrival at the premises and ushered him to the main auditorium.
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மனுசங்கடா (Manusangada) is going to Egypt!
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
மனுசங்கடா (Manusangada), Amshan Kumar has been selected in the 39th Cairo International Film Festival. The film, a true story, is about Kolappan, a low caste dalit, is forced by upper caste people to carry his father's corpse through a thorny and unformed route to an uncertain graveyard. When he finds the official powers aligning with casteist forces, Kolappan begins a protest to enforce social liberty equal to all. Will he succeed in bringing a change in the situation? The film 'Manusangada' a true story that took place as lately as 2016, depicts the signaling of the rise of Dalit struggles in contemporary India against long standing human rights violations.
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TNA Leader and leader of the Opposition Sri Lankan Parliament R Sampanthan MP writes to President Sirisena to release the land at Keppapulavu
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
In a letter to Sri Lankan President Maithiripala Sirisena dated 9 November 2017, R Sampanthan TNA Leader and leader of the Opposition has urged the President to release the 73 acres of private land occupied by the military to the civilians. The letter released to the public states as follow:
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United march towards democracy
Published Date: 11/11/2017 (Saturday)
President is serious about the Steering Committee on constitution making, no doubt. However he has seen that discussions in public forums are not enough. TV and radio discussions are limited and selective. Hence various misunderstandings have crept in to the minds of various social and cultural sections; especially among Buddhist Sangha. That is why he has decided to call for meetings with all Chapters of Buddhist clergy; in addition an All Party Conference and special discussions among various sections led and influenced by Sangha. It’s feared
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After the Assembly debate - what now? ‘Clean, lean and green budget’ Budget 2018
Published Date: 10/11/2017 (Friday)
*A special tax on super luxury vehicles *Rs. 10 excise duty per kilo on plastic resins *An ‘open cage’ concept at the Dehiweala Zoo *A cellular tower levy of Rs 200,000 per month *Rs. 300 mn to promote IT and IT related sectors *Alcohol volume based excise duty *Issuance of new liquor license to be simplified *NBT to be imposed on liquor, toddy not spared *Sugar tax on sweetened beverages *Rs. 1,400 million for Office of the Missing Persons Rs. 1,250 mn for establishing medical faculties at Wayamba, Sabaragamu and Moratuwa Universities The total government expenditure: Rs. 3, 001bn Budget deficit: Rs. 675 bn Expected govt revenue: Rs. 2,326 bn Expected expenditure: Rs. 3,982 bn
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After the Assembly debate - what now?
Published Date: 10/11/2017 (Friday)
The marathon opening session of the Constitutional Assembly was extraordinarily important and successful, most certainly NOT in the political sense, but in the pedagogical and psychological senses. It was an airing, an outpouring, of opinions covering 60 years of our post-Independence history. These cathartic benefits apart, the political exercise is quite badly damaged, almost certainly deadlocked, because the real dynamics of politics are about to crash into and carve through the Constitutional process.
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Dissident website 'blocked' in Sri Lanka
Published Date: 10/11/2017 (Friday)
Access to a dissident website that often publishes articles critical of Sri Lanka's government has been blocked in the country, the portal's administrators said Thursday, as activists expressed alarm over deteriorating press freedom on the island. The popular London-based Lanka E News became inaccessible in the country on Thursday, a day after publishing an expose alleging graft within the office of President Maithripala Sirisena in the procurement of state vehicles.
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Tamil Political and Human Rights Organisations demand accountability for international crimes committed by Sri Lankan Armed Forces attending 2017 UN Peacekeeping Defense Ministerial Conference in Vancouver
Published Date: 10/11/2017 (Friday)
The press release issued by the Coalition of Tamil political and human rights organisations on 8 November 2017 calls on the Government of Canada to refuse entry to Senior officials of Sri Lankan armend forces coming to Canda to attend the pcoming UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministrial Conference. The press release states: A coalition of organizations will be in Ottawa today at 1:30 p.m. to highlight Sri Lanka’s litany of violations of international law and to demand swift action from the Government of Canada during the upcoming UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial Conference to be held in
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An Ineffective and Fragmented Political Opposition of Tamil Leaders
Published Date: 10/11/2017 (Friday)
In Sri Lanka’s last Parliamentary and Presidential elections in 2015, the majority of Tamils and Muslims voted for the ‘good governance’ promised by the UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and SLFP led by Maithripala Sirisena who wisely broke free from the hold of Mahinda Rajapaksa. The International Community greeted the victories of these leaders with much relief resulting in the ouster of a hostile and dictatorial Rajapaksa.
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Republic of Korea agrees to grant a US$ 500 mn concessionary loan to Sri Lanka for economic development
Published Date: 10/11/2017 (Friday)
The Government of Korea has agreed to grant a concessionary loan of a sum equivalent to US$ 500 million to Sri Lanka for development purposes with a view to further strengthening the friendship and the economic cooperation between the two countries. The loan is scheduled to be given within the period from 2017 to 2019 from the Economic Development Corporation Fund of the Export and Import Bank of Korea.
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China’s growing presence ratchets tensions in Sri Lanka
Published Date: 10/11/2017 (Friday)
Holding a key position along strategic maritime routes, Sri Lanka has drawn a high level of economic investment. China and India, long-time competitors for influence in the Indian Ocean, have brought their geopolitical competition to the ports of Sri Lanka – and raised social unrest risks locally in the process.
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Cabinet approval to set up special High Court
Published Date: 09/11/2017 (Thursday)
Sri Lanka’s Cabinet of Ministers has approved the proposal to establish a special High Court to expedite cases pertaining to crimes involving public property, money laundering, funding of terrorism, misuse of state resources and organized crime. The statement issued on Cabinet decisions reached yesterday (7) states that expediting the hearing of cases on financial fraud, corruption, larcenous acts regarding government assets and incomes and similar crimes has become practically difficult due to cases continuing to
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How constitution-drafter Jayampathy tries to override SLFP
Published Date: 09/11/2017 (Thursday)
The curtain falls today on the Constitutional Assembly debate on the Interim Report of the Steering Committee. So what happens now? It doesn’t look good. The curious coincidence that the curtain falls roughly on the centenary of the October Revolution of 1917 in Russia should remind us, especially those Constitution makers of a left background, that what is happening on the street is quite as or even more important than what happens in the chambers. ‘The Street’ is as important or at certain points
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Wartime abductions: Govt. urged to prosecute or release Navy men
Published Date: 09/11/2017 (Thursday)
Retired Navy Chief of Staff Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekera has urged the government to either prosecute or release SLN officers and men remanded in connection with a series of alleged war time abductions, mostly in Colombo and its suburbs. Weerasekera emphasised that those who had served the armed forces and undertaken missions at the risk of their lives were being unfairly treated.
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