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What brings the US Peace Corps to Sri Lanka?
Published Date: 28/08/2018 (Tuesday)
The available information on the return of the US Peace Corps (USPC) to Sri Lanka on the stated mission of ‘English language education’ raises many questions, given the timing and context of their arrival. Under the terms of the agreement signed between the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Acting Director of the Peace Corps in February, the first 25 volunteers will arrive in the country in September 2019 for their two year assignments. This is likely to
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Shedding Crocodile Tears for Democracy
Published Date: 28/08/2018 (Tuesday)
As explained by Lal Wijenaike, the 10 experts nominated by the Steering Committee and drawn from various professions like engineering, legal, political and academia, with different backgrounds worked on an initial draft, based on interim report and 6 sub committee reports. This initial draft; can also be called as a Zero
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Ava group a social phenomenon in Jaffna
Published Date: 28/08/2018 (Tuesday)
Many news reports that emerged from the north produced details related to a criminal gang called ‘Ava’ group wreaking havoc in certain areas and the purported attempts being made for the revival of the LTTE by some extremist elements. Let alone, these are two issues that have political implications, both in and outside the Northern Province.
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Rejected Delimitation Report costs Rs. 21.2 million
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
A total of Rs.21.2 million had been incurred in the process of creating the Provincial Council Delimitation Report, sources revealed yesterday. The report was rejected by Parliament on Friday (24) when the vote was taken. According to Parliament sources the expense had been made in respect of the five-member Commission, appointed by the President for their personal emoluments, travelling, supplies
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Wigneswaran, Sampanthan and Tamil National Alliance Intra-Tensions
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
However the goals of making the Northern Provincial Council dysfunctional and preventing a socio-economic renaissance through development activities have succeeded to some extent due to Chief minister Wigneswaran and a few provincial councillors, some officials and sections of the Tamil media Wigneswaran may have been a Supreme Court judge but he proved to be absolutely incompetent as a chief minister and was thoroughly inefficient as an administrator He wrote to the President saying he will not participate in the Task Force and released it to the media. He also urged the TNA not to attend Task Force meetings Wigneswaran began exerting pressure on TNA leader Sampanthan to comply with his call for a boycott
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Youths tired of politicians and elections; dip in voter registration
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
A drop in voter registration, especially among the country’s youth, has been observed in the latest enumeration process, Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya told the Sunday Times. “I don’t think parties or politicians should be blamed entirely. The youth are not against individual parties or politicians, but against the system as a whole. We have spoken to some of them and they say; ‘we don’t want elections, we have no interest in
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TNA to join Presidential Task Force against C.V's wishes
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has ignored a request by Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran to boycott the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on the development of the Northern and Eastern Provinces and would participate in a meeting of the task force scheduled for today (27). The Northern Chief Minister had made the above request claiming that the government was attempting to undermine the long-awaited political solution to the ethnic problem by increasing economic activities in the region.
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Sri Lanka and India discuss fast tracking Indian Ocean shipping, security deal
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and India's Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj had discussed the need to fast track an agreement on freedom of navigation and security during bilateral talks on the sidelines of a conference on the Indian Ocean held in Vietnam. Swaraj and Wickremesinghe had agreed that the Indian Ocean Conference, which is being held for the third successive year, is the best forum to hammer out an agreement on freedom of navigation, peace and security in the Indian Ocean, a statement from the Prime Minister's office said.
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Duterte urged to take Malaysia cue on China aid
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
Opposition senator De Lima flags risks of taking loans to fund massive infrastructure projects Manila: President Rodrigo Duterte should carefully study the option of taking loans from China given the experience of other countries having to contend with a debt vortex at a later stage, an opposition senator cautioned.
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SL Army focuses on Global Disruptions and National Security
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
The Colombo Defense seminar the apex seminar organized by the Sri Lanka Army is to be held on 30th and 31 August. This year the seminar will focus on the theme of ‘global disruptions’ and implications on national security. Global disruptions have been the focus on many policy and academic conversations in the 21st Century. The impact global disruptions can have on national security is a very pertinent and timely conversation.
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Mahinda should be awarded ‘Bharat Ratna’ like Mandela – Subramanian Swamy
Published Date: 27/08/2018 (Monday)
Rajya Sabha MP of the Indian Parliament and senior politician Subramanian Swamy in one of his latest tweets has referred to former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s upcoming visit to Delhi, India. The Indian MP had previously invited former President Rajapaksa to Delhi to attend a function organized by the ‘Virat Hindustan Sangam’.
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National Police Commission : Powerless against IGP
Published Date: 26/08/2018 (Sunday)
The National Police Commission (NPC) cannot compel the Inspector General of Police (IGP) to implement its recommendations, says its Chairman P.H. Manatunge. The Commissioner made these comments in response to news reports that IGP Pujith Jayasundara has failed to thus far implement several recommendations made by the NPC, particularly with regard to promotions.
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Chinese archaeologists study ancient Jaffna ports: India also wants to develop it
Published Date: 26/08/2018 (Sunday)
The Chinese are not only interested in developing Sri Lanka’s major ports such as Colombo and Hambantota. They also want to learn about the history of the country’s other ports, an unusual interest indeed. Involved in the task in Sri Lanka now is a team of archaeologists from the Shanghai Museum. Their attention at present is focused on learning about the ancient port city that existed centuries ago in Jaffna. Interesting enough, India has expressed the wish to develop the port
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Police acting similar to 'bulls in the China shop': SF
Published Date: 26/08/2018 (Sunday)
The Police are playing the fool using the freedom given by the yahapalana government, Wildlife and Regional Development Minister Sarath Foinseka told Parliament yesterday. He said this during the debate on the provincial delimitation commission report and pointed out that some senior police officers were acting similar to ‘Bulls in the china shop’.
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Palaly to be upgraded to a regional airport
Published Date: 26/08/2018 (Sunday)
Three ministries are seeking Cabinet approval to upgrade the Palaly Airport to the level of a regional airport and operate flights to South Indian cities by the end of this year, a senior cabinet minister said yesterday. A joint cabinet paper is to be submitted by the ministries of Transport and Civil Avaition, Policy Planning and Economic Development and Tourism to seek Rs 1.2 billion for the refurbishment, Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said.
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19A unambiguous on two-term presidential office-holders - Elections Commission and experts
Published Date: 26/08/2018 (Sunday)
While new legal interpretations surfacing to indicate former President Mahinda Rajapaksa can contest presidential elections again despite the 19th Amendment being in force, experts and officials at the independent election commission insist the law is crystal clear on the point that persons twice elected to the office of President by the people are disqualified from being elected again. EC officials also said that criteria for disqualification of presidential nominees were listed in the constitution and not in the Presidential Elections Act
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Drought in Kilinochchi brings misery to thousands
Published Date: 25/08/2018 (Saturday)
A population of about 82,000 people representing 24,100 families in the Kilinochchi District have been affected by the drought prevailing in the area. A senior official of the District Disaster Management Centre said the people of Kilinochchi, Kandawalai. Pachilipalai, Karachchi and Poonaryn divisions were the worst affected. He said all garden wells had run dry creating hardships for the people for want of drinking water.
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Co-author dies as Sri Lanka parliament shoots down report
Published Date: 25/08/2018 (Saturday)
A member of the controversial de-limitation committee died of a heart attack in Jaffna Saturday hours after a report he co-authored was shot down by parliament in an unprecedented move. Professor Shahul H. Hasbullah, 67, was a member of the committee which drew up new electoral boundaries for the next provincial council election. The panel had presented a 804-page report to the House five months ago and it was debated and rejected on Friday.
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A New Model of Human Security
Published Date: 22/08/2018 (Wednesday)
Between interventionist excesses and tragic cases of inaction, it is clear that the international community still lacks a reliable doctrine of humanitarian intervention. The problem is that current security models are still based on the traditional concept of state sovereignty, rather than focusing on individual dignity.
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Silencing Scholarly Voices, One Event at a Time Rational voices are being drummed out of India’s public sphere. How can scholars be expected to speak when the intolerant demands of haters are put above the pursuit of knowledge?
Published Date: 22/08/2018 (Wednesday)
On August 11, 2018, I did not speak in Hyderabad. I had been invited to give a lecture on that day by the Krishnakriti Foundation, originally at the Kalakriti Art Gallery and later, owing to a tremendous response from Hyderabadis interested in attending, at the Bhaskara Auditorium at the B.M. Birla Science Centre. A few weeks before the scheduled date, self-described members of the Bajrang Dal, RSS, and BJP wrote letters of protest to the police. I only saw one such letter. The letter took umbrage to
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Hope fades at Tellipalai cancer hospital
Published Date: 22/08/2018 (Wednesday)
After working two long shifts during the week Dr Anusha Yoganathan was working a normal shift on Wednesday again at the Tellippalai Trail Cancer Hospital. But seated in ward 14 despite her unwavering smile, she appears to have much on her mind.
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China Claims ‘One Belt One Road’ Debt Traps Come with ‘No Political Strings Attached’
Published Date: 22/08/2018 (Wednesday)
China’s state-run Global Times published a vocal defense of the nation’s “One Belt, One Road” infrastructure plan on Tuesday, insisting the predatory loans it offers to developing nations come “with no political strings attached” and that those who warn China is attempting to colonize poorer countries have their own “ulterior motives.”
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Maldives poll: Opposition too playing balancing-act on China?
Published Date: 22/08/2018 (Wednesday)
With only weeks left for the 23 September presidential elections, the MDP-Joint Opposition (JO) has started playing the post-poll ‘balancing act’ as much as China as on Saudi Arabia. However, candidate Mohamed Ibrahim ‘Ibu’ Solih’s pledges, also covering Maldives restoring ties with Qatar and Iran, and returning to the British Commonwealth, impinges on his election victory, to begin with. To the extent Solih has begun talking about post-poll ties of the nation, the MDP-JO’s democracy campaign through the past years may have taken a back-seat. Likewise, the Election Commission’s decision to let his candidacy stay on, unlike what was anticipated by sections of the MDP-JO, has also sort of made the ‘democracy campaign’ less relevant than it
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Hidden Costs: The Impact of Foreign Debt on Sri Lankan Citizens
Published Date: 22/08/2018 (Wednesday)
It is estimated that Sri Lanka’s debt servicing cost will be USD 4.2 billion next year. From 2000 to 2009, Sri Lanka’s foreign debt doubled, from USD 9 billion in 2000 to USD 18.6 billion in 2009. By 2014, this amount had skyrocketed again to USD 42.9 billion, while in January 2017 the total amount owed was USD 46.6 billion – a slight dip. This has resulted in serious pressure on the part of the Government regarding debt servicing, especially from 2019 onwards, with the Government likely to borrow more to meet foreign debt repayments.
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China projects steam ahead
Published Date: 20/08/2018 (Monday)
• Chinese companies confident of completing railway extension and fourth phase of highway by Jan. • Project includes longest railway bridge and railway, funded by $ 278 m loan from China EXIM Bank • Highway connecting Mattala Airport and H’tota Port also nearing end, 75% completed • Rest of $ 1.9 b Southern Highway to be completed in 3Q of 2019, Kottawa-Kataragama in three and a half hours • H’tota Port operations expand in 1Q, project 85% y-on-y growth, targets 20 m TEUs by 2040
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