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Sri Lanka Police to deploy Tamil Police officers to North and East
Published Date: 05/12/2013 (Thursday)
Police Media Spokesperson SSP Ajith Rohana said 900 Tamil police officers and 1,500 Sinhala police officers fluent in Tamil have been deployed to police stations in the Northern and Eastern provinces to help Tamil speaking people to record their statements in Tamil and avoid delays in carrying out services, because of language barriers.
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TGTE to begin its 2nd Parliamentary Term - Inaugural Session on December 6th.
Published Date: 05/12/2013 (Thursday)
The Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (THTE) has announced that it will begin its second Parliamentary term on 6 December, 2013 During this session, TGTE MP’s will elect the Prime Minister, Speaker and Deputy Speaker. Several dignitaries from around the world, including legislators and political leaders are expected to address the opening Session.
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Opposition Leader of the Northern Provincial Council arrested and remanded for the murder of Provincial Council Chairman
Published Date: 05/12/2013 (Thursday)
Criminal Investigations Department (CID) officers has arrested three persons in connection with the murder of Delft Pradeshiya Sabha (Local Government Council) Chairman Daniel Rexigan (44 years), on 3rd December. The Provincial Council Chairman was a member of the EDPD party. Among the suspects arrested includes, Rexian Anida the wife of the victim, the opposition leader of the Northern Provincial Council Kamalendran Kandasamy and his assistant Sasindran. Daniel Rexigan was found dead with head injuries in a storeroom near his residence in Punkudithivu on November 26.
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Priest threatened, accused of holding Mass for LTTE Leader
Published Date: 04/12/2013 (Wednesday)
Father SS Johnpillai, priest of Our Lady of Guadalupe in the diocese of Trincomalee in Eastern Province says two gunmen threatened to kill him, accusing him of saying a Mass for Velupillai Prabhakaran, Leader of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The attack took place on 26 November, but local authorities did everything they could to keep the affair under wrap. The same day, the Sri Lankan government had declared illegal any commemorative events connected to the LTTE rebels.
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India Seeks Closer Sri Lankan Ties as Chinese Presence Grows
Published Date: 03/12/2013 (Tuesday)
Concerned over the rising presence of the Chinese in the Indian Ocean region, India has offered to boost defense ties with the southern island nation of Sri Lanka. Indian Navy Chief Adm. D.K. Joshi was on a five-day visit to Sri Lanka last week where he offered to help train Sri Lankan sailors at Indian training establishments.
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China becomes Sri Lanka’s largest foreign investor
Published Date: 03/12/2013 (Tuesday)
China has emerged as Sri Lanka’s largest foreign direct investor accounting for 24 percent of the inflows in 2013. The Sri Lankan government has set a target of $2 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) for 2013 and as of November had achieved $1.2 billion of the target, reported Xinhua. Investment Promotion Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardene said companies from China accounted for the largest amount of FDI into the country followed by Hong Kong with 12 percent.
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Farmers protest against 2014 Budget in loincloths in Colombo
Published Date: 02/12/2013 (Monday)
Members of All Ceylon Farmers’ Federation held a protest at Colombo Fort railway station at 4pm wearing loincloths against the 2014 budget. The farmers wearing the traditional gear, loin cloth, from several districts joined in the protest. They say that the government has failed to find solutions to their problems. They also distributed leaflets to make the public aware about their grievances. The National Organizer of All Ceylon Farmers’ Federation Namal Karunaratna and its Asst. Secretary T.B. Sarath addressed the gathering.
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TNA Sampanthan Speech to parliament 28 Nov 2013
Published Date: 29/11/2013 (Friday)
Mr. Deputy Speaker, I am happy to follow the Hon. Minister of External Affairs, the Hon. (Prof.) G.L. Peiris. His Excellency the President in his capacity as Minister of Finance has presented his 9th Budget. When he presented his 9th Budget, he had also assumed duties as Chairman of the Commonwealth. This would, no doubt, entail additional duties and responsibilities, which hopefully would have a beneficial impact on governance in this country.
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New Guide - How to follow up on United Nations human rights recommendations
Published Date: 29/11/2013 (Friday)
The fifth in the series of Practical Guides for civil society produced in the last three years by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the new Guide - How to follow up on United Nations human rights recommendations describes methods and activities that civil society actors can use to promote the implementation of human rights recommendations, as well as existing follow-up procedures and practices of UN human rights mechanisms and how civil society can participate. Complemented by real experiences contributed by civil society actors and OHCHR field presences, the Guide offers a menu of options from which civil society actors can select on the basis of their on human rights recommendations
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Commemorating the birth of LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran or paying tribute to LTTE banned in Sri Lanka
Published Date: 26/11/2013 (Tuesday)
The Sri Lankan government announced today that it has outlawed all events that directly or indirectly honour the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The authorities took this decision to prevent commemoration of the birth of LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran and the Tamil community celebrating the “Heroes Day”.
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Government's CHOGM bill at Rs 15.8 Billion
Published Date: 24/11/2013 (Sunday)
The government has spent a whopping Rs 15.8 billion on the recently concluded Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), opposition charged in Parliament yesterday. Spending money of this magnitude for a meeting of this nature should have some sense of proportion where 54 Mercedes Benzes were imported for the 54 Heads of Governments, but only 21 arrived, Colombo District United National Party (UNP) MP, Ravi Karunanayake, speaking during the budget debate said.
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Popular Tamil poet arrested in Sri Lanka for violating visa condition
Published Date: 24/11/2013 (Sunday)
The Jaffna-born popular Tamil poet V.I.S. Jeyapalan has been arrested in Sri Lanka for violating visa regulations. Police spokesman Ajith Rohana said, Jeyapalan, 79 was arrested on Friday, 22nd in Mankulam because he was visiting the island on a tourist visa, but was involved in holding seminars in Jaffna, which according to police aimed at causing communal unrest. The exiled poet is a resident of Norway.
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British Foreign Secretary opens UK funded reconciliation centre
Published Date: 14/11/2013 (Thursday)
Today, the British Foreign Secretary, William Hague, opened a new reconciliation centre in Matara, southern Sri Lanka, funded by the UK. The centre is run by Sri Lanka Unites (SLU) – a youth movement which helps young people lead the way in consolidating peace in Sri Lanka. The organisation says, it has over 15,000 members from over 100 schools across Sri Lanka. Some volunteers are from local and international universities and there are chapters established in the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States.
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Police demolished Mullivaikal Memorial Compound wall in Tamil Nadu
Published Date: 14/11/2013 (Thursday)
P Nedumaran, president of Ulaga Thamizhar Peramaippu announced that the police and highways department officials demolished the compound wall of the Mullivaikkal Memorial (Mullivaikkal Ninaivu Mutram) in the early hours of this morning. He said, “The police came to the memorial armed with bulldozers and fenced the memorial area which contained the park and lawns with wire mesh. They also installed two boards stating the area belonged to Highways department and later started demolishing it”.
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ICG’s New Report: Sri Lanka’s Potemkin Peace: Democracy Under Fire
Published Date: 13/11/2013 (Wednesday)
Despite recent moves meant to show progress towards post-war reconciliation and respect for human rights, Sri Lanka's government has not altered the authoritarian direction of its policies, and the rights and security of all communities remain under threat. In its latest report, Sri Lanka's Potemkin Peace: Democracy Under Fire, the International Crisis Group examines challenges facing the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) following its landslide victory in Sri Lanka's north, the central government's hostility to devolution, and the ever-shrinking democratic space nationwide.
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Mauritius Prime Minister to skip CHOGM
Published Date: 12/11/2013 (Tuesday)
Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam will not travel to Sri Lanka to attend the Commonwealth Summit, to be held from September 15 to 17 November. However, Mauritius will be represented by the Foreign Minister Arvin Boolell. The prime minister made the announcement at the National Assembly Tuesday, November 12 while responding to the Private Notice Question (PNQ) the Leader of the Opposition.
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Commonwealth: Raise Rights at Sri Lanka Summit
Published Date: 11/11/2013 (Monday)
Governments attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting should press the host, Sri Lanka, on accountability for alleged war crimes and ongoing human rights abuses, Human Rights Watch and the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice said today. The two groups released a media guide for the November 15-17, 2013 summit. The 22-page media guide provides information on both the summit and Sri Lanka, from practical tips on getting around the country to the human rights situation four years after the end of the 26-year conflict with the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.
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Corrupted Journalism: Channel 4and Sri Lanka
Published Date: 10/11/2013 (Sunday)
In the media pack given to all arriving journalists at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) being held in Sri Lanka next week is a 222 page book called "Corrupted Journalism". In response, the Channel 4 News Editor Ben de Pear says, “It is an out and out attack on Channel 4 and our journalism. As we only received our visas this week (our accreditation process took 8-10 weeks as opposed to the 2-3 weeks it took everyone else) I do not have this weighty tome in my hands, so I can't react to everything it says.
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Attack on Bhadrakaaliamman Temple at Dimbulla in Sri Lanka
Published Date: 09/11/2013 (Saturday)
The Western Provincial Councillor and Deputy Leader of the Democratic Peoples’ Front, who is also spokesman for the Hindu Front said that, “It’s with deep shock & sorrow I record here that the Dambulla Badhrakaali Amman Kovil (Temple) has been demolished.” Guruparan said that both he and parliamentarian R .Yogarajan had appealed directly to the President over the issue, but to no avail. He described the campaign that had led up to the demolition of the thirty year old temple as an “attack” by a “chauvinist buddhist group”. He said that, “There is a group of Buddhist fundamentalists eager to change the history of Tamils and Hindus’ and Muslims’ in Dambulla,” by removing the temple and palace, and that government forces in “civvies” had been responsible for the destruction.
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CHOGM 2013: political parties stage protests in Coimbatore
Published Date: 08/11/2013 (Friday)
Several political parties staged protests across Coimbatore (Kovai) in Tamil Nadu against India’s participation in the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meet (CHOGM) in Sri Lanka from 10 – 17 November. The protestors also demanded the prosecution of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa for alleged war crimes. Around 100 cadres of the Akila India Samathuva Makkal Katchi staged a protest near the Red Cross Office.
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Boycotting Commonwealth summit may help Sri Lankan Tamils – Tutu
Published Date: 07/11/2013 (Thursday)
A boycott of a meeting of Commonwealth leaders this month in Sri Lanka could help pressure Colombo to address alleged war crimes against minority Tamils, South African peace campaigner and Nobel Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu said on Thursday. The Sri Lankan government, which defeated separatist Tamil Tiger rebels in 2009, is under increasing pressure from the international community to try those responsible for rights abuses during the nearly three-decade-long conflict.
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Tamil Australians Protest Against CHOGM
Published Date: 06/11/2013 (Wednesday)
Consortium of Tamil Associations' spokesperson, Mr. Siva Sivakumar, said that Victorian Tamils will conduct a peaceful protest from 5PM next Monday, 11 November 2013 five days before the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) to be held in Sri Lanka. The Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) has made no progress towards an effective accountability process for the serious and widespread atrocities committed during the civil war. The heavy military presence in the predominantly Tamil areas, and continued arbitrary arrests, intimidation and killings are the main reasons for the Tamil youth fleeing Sri Lanka on leaky boats, to places like Australia.
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Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire will answer your questions on the Commonwealth live via Twitter on 7 November.
Published Date: 05/11/2013 (Tuesday)
Commonwealth Heads of Government are meeting in Sri Lanka from 11 – 17 November. The biannual Heads of Government meeting, known as CHOGM, is an opportunity for member states to consider priorities for the organisation and reflect on progress. The UK is attending CHOGM not only to support the Commonwealth, but to shine a spotlight on Sri Lanka and to urge its government to make real progress on issues of human rights, reconciliation, and political reform.
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Report on the screening and discussion of ‘The Advocate’ documentary film by Deepa Dhanraj on civil liberties, social movements and state in Andhra Pradesh, India
Published Date: 04/11/2013 (Monday)
The Development & Conflict Group at the University of Westminster, CAMPACC, the International State Crime Initiative at King’s College and Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers co-hosted a successful screening of the documentary The Advocate on 23 October 2013 at the University of Westminster’s Cavendish Campus. The documentary made by Deepa Dhanraj, a well know film-maker from India, focuses on the life and work of late K.G. Kannabiran, India’s foremost lawyer and champion of civil liberties. The film brought to life state repression including extra-judicial killings, political prisoners, police impunity and violations of civil liberties against the context of the Maoist insurgency in India in the post Emergency era after 1977 in India.
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Arrests of Protesters in Vellore
Published Date: 02/11/2013 (Saturday)
Around 20 Naam Thamilar party members gathered in front of Vellore Head Post Office and requested the staff to close down the post office and to join their protest against India participating in the Commonwealth Conference in Sri Lanka on 1 November 2013. The protesters were arrested by the Tamil Nadu police and released later.
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