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Returning refugees from India a win-win situation
Published Date: 30/03/2016 (Wednesday)
By Harim Peiris MBA Refugees returning to Sri Lanka would be an unparalleled statement of confidence by some of those most affected by the conflict, in the new direction and policy trajectory of the Sri Lankan State under the Yahapalanaya Government. In a World which is creating and spewing out ever more desperate people having to flee the wreckage of their homes and lives, Sri Lanka would be a shining example of a country in which people once left violent conflict now returning back home to rebuild their lives and start over a fresh. Such a statement of confidence in a new Sri Lanka by the Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora in India, would in fact be a serious dampener on the more extremist views and rhetoric of the Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora in the West. People would be voting with their feet in returning to Sri Lanka and that would be an authentic message of hope which would be hard to counter from arm chairs in the West.
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Sri Lanka to strengthen defense ties with China
Published Date: 30/03/2016 (Wednesday)
Defense Secretary Karunasena Hettiarachchi has said that China supported Sri Lanka to end the war against Tamil Tigers in May 2009 after 30years and the government is in discussions to further strengthen the defense relations between the two countries this year. \\\"We are looking forward to a much stronger relationship with China. Already there are quite a few courses provided to Sri Lankan military personnel in China and we hope to expand our ties in this sector,\\\" the Defence official das said.
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Former Australian Prime Minister Abbott defends stance on Sri Lanka
Published Date: 30/03/2016 (Wednesday)
Former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has defended his stance on Sri Lanka when he was Prime Minister. Abbott penned a 3,706-word essay for the rightwing magazine Quadrant defending his two-year period in office, Yahoo News reported. Abbott was accused of backing the Mahinda Rajapaksa led Government when it was accused of grave human rights abuses.
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Scientists discover terrestrial clone of Mars
Published Date: 28/03/2016 (Monday)
The temple of Goddess Ashapura Mata has traditionally been an attraction for religious tourists thronging Matanumadh in Kachchh district of Gujarat. Now, thanks to a new discovery, this sleepy village in Western India is set to draw tourists of a different kind – planetary geologists from around the world. Researchers report1 that Matanumadh (also spelt Matanamadh), situated around 86 km northwest of Bhuj, is actually a terrestrial clone of Mars. In other words, experiments to understand the geology of the Martian surface can be conducted in this "analog locality" in India instead of sending robots to the red planet
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Additional ministerial portfolios to Sarath Fonseka
Published Date: 26/03/2016 (Saturday)
Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka who was appointed the Minister of Provincial Development has got additional portfolios, National Agriculture and Diversification and Human Settlement Authority (Hadabima). His Ministry is also tasked with the implementation of development projects in Nuwara Eliya, Badulla, Kandy, Matale, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Ampara, Anuradhapura and Polnnaruwa Districts.
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Parliament to convene as Constitutional Assembly on April 5
Published Date: 26/03/2016 (Saturday)
Minister of Higher Education and Highways and Leader of the House, Lakshman Kiriella, has said the Sri Lankan Parliament will for the first time convene a Constitutional Assembly on April 5. The Constitutional Assembly was appointed for the purpose of deliberating and seeking the views and advice of the people on a new Constitution for Sri Lanka and preparing a draft of a Constitution Bill for the consideration of Parliament.
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Sri Lanka's housing programme for North, East caught in row
Published Date: 26/03/2016 (Saturday)
Objection to the manner in which the project was sought to be executed. The Sri Lanka government’s ambitious project of building 65,000 houses in the civil war-hit Northern and Eastern provinces in five years is embroiled in controversy, much before it can gather momentum. A few days ago, when the country’s Parliament in Colombo witnessed a debate on the project, the Northern Provincial Council in Jaffna too discussed the Central government’s initiative and Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran reiterated his reservations.
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TNA to Take up Sampur Power Plant Environmental issues with India
Published Date: 26/03/2016 (Saturday)
Tmil National Alliance (TNA) chief R.Sampanthan has said that he will discuss with the Indian High Commission the “substantial” environmental problems that will be created if India sets up a 500 MW coal-fired power plant at Sampur in Eastern Sri Lanka. “The people of the area have been telling me about the substantial pollution and environmental damage which will be caused and have accused me of not taking any action on it.
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Jayalalithaa demands immediate action by the Centre in dealing with fishermen issue
Published Date: 25/03/2016 (Friday)
Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa criticized the Central government for not acting "effectively" on the issue of apprehending of Indian fishermen by Sri Lanka authorities. Stating that three fishermen and their mechanized fishing boat were apprehended by Sri Lankan navy on March 23, she said "a decisive shift in the manner of dealing with this sensitive issue is long awaited and is the need of the hour".
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No discussions with India over building sea-bridge: Sri Lanka PM Ranil Wickremesinghe
Published Date: 23/03/2016 (Wednesday)
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe today said Sri Lanka and India have not held any talks on building a sea-bridge and tunnel connecting two countries. Wickremesinghe was responding to a question by the opposition parliamentarian Udaya Gammanpila in parliament. Gammanpila said the Indian Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari had announced in Indian parliament (Lok Sabha) a plan to construct the bridge.
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25 Years - Too long to Anguish!
Published Date: 08/03/2016 (Tuesday)
Having my entire clan being displaced from my ancestral home Palaly since 1990, and having heard the displacement woes of my people from my mother down to my young nephews and nieces, and having worked for Tamil refugees as well as other international refugees in my early professional life; and as a volunteer activist in the UK up to now for the welfare of refugees and the displaced, I think I have earned my feather to comment on Chief Minister of Northern Province Mr.C.V.Vigneswaran’s attempt to highlight the plight of refugees and the displaced, some of whom anguishing for good 25 years or more in refugee or displaced camps and shacks denied of decent living.
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India & Sri Lanka to hold meeting on fishermen issue in May
Published Date: 03/03/2016 (Thursday)
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said that she held consultations with the top Sri Lankan leadership to resolve the issue of fishermen from Tamil Nadu. Intervening during the Zero Hour in the Rajya Sabha, she said a meeting of ministers dealing with fisheries of both countries is being convened in May to evolve a mechanism to resolve the lingering issue. "The government will enforce installation of GPS on fishing boats to steer it clear of maritime boundaries of Gujarat," she added.
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Government to setup special presidential task force on reconciliation
Published Date: 05/02/2016 (Friday)
The Cabinet approved the setting up of a Special Presidential Task Force on Reconciliation as per a cabinet paper presented by President Maithripala Sirisena, Cabinet Spokesman and Health and Indigenous Medicine Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne said. Addressing the Cabinet press briefing, the Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne said the President has decided to appoint a special Task Force to cater to the need to build a united and integrated nation, while healing the wounds of mistrust and social and cultural stress generated from extended conflicts and violence between different communities in Sri Lanka.
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Lanka’s rich beggars
Published Date: 26/12/2015 (Saturday)
Sri Lanka is reported to be the only country in the South Asian region where the beggar population is rich possessing bank accounts. A recent survey conducted by an independent organization on the directives of a state-owned entity on the beggar population has revealed that at least sixty percent possess savings accounts in state and private banks. According to the survey, beggars are categorized into several segments; street beggars, passenger transport beggars, differently abled beggars and music beggars.
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Enforced Disappearances: UN experts on official visit to Sri Lanka
Published Date: 05/11/2015 (Thursday)
The United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances* will undertake an official visit to Sri Lanka from 9 to 18 November 2015, at the invitation of the Government. During the mission, the UN experts will study the measures adopted by the State to prevent and eradicate enforced disappearances, including issues related to truth, justice and reparation for the victims of enforced disappearances. They will also gather information on cases of enforced disappearances, including those pending before the Working Group.
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Sabiya Mahal: Commemmorating 25 years of the Northern Muslim eviction
Published Date: 05/11/2015 (Thursday)
I am worried and mad at my Mum. Why is she doing this? Is she insane or greedy? She says it is foolish to keep something that will be soon taken over by “them”. I cried “Mum, it is our home. We have to keep it for our kids. Maybe they will not live there but this is the only connection we have got. After all, Mannar is our home town”.
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British resident in Guantanamo Bay was released.
Published Date: 30/10/2015 (Friday)
The last British resident held at Guantánamo Bay, 46-year old Saudi national Shaker Aamer Mr Aamer, who has indefinite leave to remain in the UK and a British family, has been held in Guantánamo Bay since February 2002 where he has never faced charges or trial, and was first cleared for release in 2007. Several human rights organisations tirelessly campaigned for the release of Shaker Aamer and others who were held illegally.
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Tamils Detainees Held Under PTA may be given Bail
Published Date: 28/10/2015 (Wednesday)
Reports coming from government sources indicate that the current government is ready to allow Tamils held under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) without charges to be released on bail. But those who had been convicted could be released only by the President of the country. However, the Commissioner of Prisons, Rohana Pushpakumara has said that there is no one in detention now without a charge. Forty eight have been convicted and are serving a sentence, 116 have cases against them in High Courts and 62 in Magistrates ‘courts.
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Sri Lankan PM Ranil Wickremesinghe claims Sri Lanka's 'white-flag' massacre was botched Rajapaksa deal
Published Date: 23/10/2015 (Friday)
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told the assembly that Rajapaksa had wanted to save the LTTE's peace secretariat chief S. Puleedevan for engineering his election victory in 2005 by organising a Tamil boycott of the vote and thus blocking votes for the UNP candidate. It was said in the parliament that the controversial "white flag killings" were actually due to a botched surrender arranged by former president Mahinda Rajapaksa to save some of the senior Tiger leaders who had helped him to come to power. Wickremesinghe also made a startling allegation that the August 2005 assassination of foreign minister Lakshman Kadirgamar was also linked to Rajapaksa's plan to come to power.
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Sabiya Mahal (from an IDP’s diary – 22nd August 2003)
Published Date: 22/10/2015 (Thursday)
I am worried and mad at my Mum. Why is she doing this? Is she insane or greedy? But she says it is foolish to keep something that will be soon taken over by “them”. I cried “Mum it is our home, we have got to keep it for our kids, may be they will not live there but this is the only connection we have got. After all Mannar is our hometown". My mother sounded very determined in her stand; she continued justifying her decision “Look you think it is going be your home again? People say that they have even changed the name of our street, they now call it Murugan Street, what a day dreamer you are and I don’t even want to imagine my grandchildren stepping in there” and she added “I have decided to do away with this house before the war starts again”.
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Sri Lanka troops committed war crimes: Rajapaksa's panel
Published Date: 20/10/2015 (Tuesday)
The war crimes investigation set up by former president Mahinda Rajapaksa has made startling revelations that senior military commanders should be hauled up for criminal prosecutions. The Maxell Paranagama commission appointed in 2013 in what many at the time feared was an attempt to white wash the security forces has surprisingly produced a shockingly frank report amounting to an indictment of the former regime.
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Gary Anandasangaree wins Scarborough-Rouge Park for Liberals in landslide victory
Published Date: 20/10/2015 (Tuesday)
Gary Anandasangaree has won the new riding of Scarborough-Rouge Park for the Liberal party, beating the Conservatives after the party dropped candidate Jerry Bance late in the campaign. Anandasangaree surged ahead of the other candidates with an overwhelming majority of the vote. Conservative Leslyn Lewis came in a distant second, followed by NDP candidate Rev. Kantharatnam Shanthikumar.
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The challenge of doing what is right in Sri Lanka After UN resolution, church leaders must insist on justice to promote reconciliation
Published Date: 16/10/2015 (Friday)
After four contentious resolutions on Sri Lanka, the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva on Oct. 1 adopted a "consensus resolution" for foreign judges and prosecutors to help Sri Lanka try those accused of serious crimes during the decades-long civil war. This resolution came as a response to a report by the U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, which the previous Sri Lankan government had aggressively opposed — going to the extent of threatening, intimidating and arresting Sri Lankans who supported it, including my own detention.
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Deputy Chief of Police of Halton Regional Police Service, Canada.
Published Date: 11/10/2015 (Sunday)
Tamil People living in Canada is proud to announce that a Sri Lankan citizen who was working in the Canadian police service has been appointed as the Deputy Inspector General of police. Nishanthan Thuraiappa who joined the Canadian police force as a police constable in the Harlton area has been gradually promoted to the rank of the Deputy Inspector General due to his outstanding performance. The Harlton police department announced this last weekend.
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CID Arrests Pillayan In Connection With Pararajasingham Assassination
Published Date: 11/10/2015 (Sunday)
Former Eastern Province Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan and LTTE member alias Pillayan has been arrested by the CID for the alleged killing of Joseph Pararajasingham, a former TNA MP. He was shot dead at St. Mary's cathedral church in Batticaloa, while attending Christmas prayers early morning on 25 December 2005. S. Chandrakanthan arrived at the CID to provide a statement on the murder of Former Parliamentarian Joseph Pararajasingham in 2005. He is also part of of Karuna Amman led Tamil Makkal Viduthal Pulihal (TMVP), at the time Pararajasingam was killied..
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