Monday, April 30, 2012

PM’s pledge, not a solution – Hakeem

Leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress Rauff Hakeem says that that the Prime Minister’s pledge not to relocate the Muslim mosque in Dambulla was not the ultimate solution to the issue. He was speaking at a media briefing in Colombo this morning (April 30).

The Govt must apologise to the Muslim community over Dambulla Mosque Incident

''There has been a particular ideology created in the country since the 1972 Constitution that promotes the hegemony of the Buddhist institutional religion (Sasana) over the other religions. It was unfortunate that this constitution was drafted by a prominent leftist who was supposed to advocate socialism and equality! ''
Dr Laksiri Fernando

Implement recomendations - Ban Ki-moon

I appreciate the difficult process the Sri Lankan government has undertaken, that they had to go through, fighting against terrorism. But in the course of the final few months of the military operations, it was also seen that unfortunately, tens of thousands of people were killed and human rights have been seriously violated.

The Morning after the FUTA Strike:The politics of a broader agenda in 2012

Andi Schubert
The Federation of University Teachers’ Associations (FUTA) re-launched its trade union action on Thursday the 26th of April with a token strike and rally. In the context of the renewed attention in tertiary education and the threat of further trade union action by FUTA, this article seeks to draw out some questions that FUTA will have to deal with if it is to avoid the debacle of its last trade union action.

Tamil Diaspora cannot ignore realities and transparency

S. V. Kirubaharan,
I humbly feel that if we don’t share our views openly and honestly, there is no use talking about unity. Therefore, I will be frank and honest.  We Tamils from the North East or Eelam Tamils have had many rises and falls – the non violent struggle, the armed struggle in self-defence which came to a halt in May 2009

Immediate investigation needed for Dambulla Mosque incident

Javid Yusuf
The incidents surrounding the Dambulla mosque and its aftermath have left the Muslim community shaken and uneasy. The Muslims have over centuries lived in harmony with their brother communities and enjoyed excellent relationships with both the Sinhala and Tamil communities.

Dambulla demonstrators regard minorities as invaders threatening Sinhala Buddhist identity of Sri Lanka

Tisaranee Gunasekara
“The sleep of reason produces monsters” – Francisco Goya(The title of 43rd painting in the Los Caprichos series)
The mini-war in Kelaniya displays, in microcosmic form, the future that is in store for Sri Lanka under Rajapaksa Rule.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sri Lanka’s Democracy in Peril - Weliamuna

‘Rule of Law, means everything is done according to law, is our constitution followed, no. why even the 13th amendment of the constitution is not followed, what about 17th amendment when it was in force. How many times, the executive betrayed the constitution by not appointing members to constitutional council?’

SRI LANKA: A call for rebellion against the scheme of injustice

Basil Fernando
 "I am expected to take my oaths next year, but now I have to rethink whether an attorney could work according to his or her conscience and seek justice for the aggrieved party giving the extreme political pressures the judicial process is subjected to in this country. There has to be a serious rethink about it."

Cry, my Beloved Country!

''This is not the time for a blame-game. The crying need is to restore our lost values and marginalize the fascist forces who try to re-create communal and religious tensions in the country. The need is for all democratic forces to get together and seek a consensual approach to meeting these threats.''

Global Tamil Forum stands in solidarity with the Muslims in Sri Lanka

Global Tamil Forum (GTF) strongly condemns the Sri Lankan Government’s complicity in the orders for the removal of the Muslim mosque in Dambulla, central Sri Lanka. GTF is profoundly disturbed by the attacks on the mosque by a minority, yet in their thousands as reported, of extremist Sri Lankan Buddhists led by monks on 20 April 2012, calling for its destruction claiming it was constructed illegally.

Witness: Man hit by cluster bomb in Sri Lanka war

A Sri Lankan man was wounded in the final months of the country's bloody civil war by an unexploded cluster bomblet that tore into his leg and buried itself in the gash, a medical worker who saw the injury told The Associated Press on Friday.

Sri Lankan government ally ,SLMCdecides to support protest

An alliance member of the Sri Lankan government on Saturday decided to support protests against a decision to relocate a mosque in central Sri Lanka.  The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress which has members in the Sri Lankan cabinet, met for several hours to decide its position on the mosque issue.

Sri Lanka: “Resettled” Tamils in Vanni live in poverty

Amid international criticism of human rights abuses during the last stages of Sri Lankan government’s war against separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), the government has stepped up its propaganda about the “resettlement” of war refugees. It insists that it has have “resettled” more than 90 percent of the refugees and claims they live in better conditions than before the war.

Mosque issue: TNA slams government

 ''The incident in Dambulla is the most recent of a pattern of attacks on places of minority religious worship. We have consistently drawn attention to the destruction of numerous Hindu places of worship and the proliferation of new Buddhist shrines in the North and East, which are part of an attempt to impose the dominant culture on those areas.''

Superintendents paid over Rs 100 mn to non-existing workers

The Parliamentary watchdog committee COPE has found that some estate superintendents have siphoned off over Rs 100 million on the pretext of paying estate workers.Chairman of the Committee on Public Enterprises Senior Minister D. E. W. Gunasekera, addressing a workshop held at Parliamentary Complex, for the Divisional Secretaries in the Western Province on Thursday (26), said

Parliament has failed, Warns of dire consequences unless financial discipline is restored - DEW

''Had parliament intervened, the officialdom would have been forced to take corrective measures, he said. But, unfortunately, all political parties, including the SLFP-led UPFA, in which the CPSL is a constituent, had turned a blind eye to the gross violation. The National List MP alleged that political parties, officials and trade unions affiliated to political parties were responsible for massive frauds ''

Friday, April 27, 2012

GL to present Lanka's action plan to US

The government has sought views from its alliance partners to prepare an action plan to be presented to the United States (US), on the implementation of recommendations made by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), political sources said yesterday.

Abduction fear still alive in post-war Sri Lanka

Amal Jayasinghe
The choice of vehicle was almost inevitable. While describing his terrifying abduction ordeal in Sri Lanka, political activist Premakumar Gunaratnam said his captors came in a white van. 

TNA forced to seek int’l help: Sampanthan

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has been forced to seek international assistance to find a political solution to the national issue as all its efforts to come to a deal with the respective governments have failed, its leader R. Sampanthan said yesterday.

Human Rights and Reconciliation Challenged in Dambulla and by Disappearances

''It would seem that as criticism of members of the Sangha is taboo, so does the minister who threatened to break my legs, enjoy impunity.   We are told by First Brother Basil that he has done good deeds in Kelaniya and that only His Excellency the President can remove him – from the party- that is.  His Excellency appears to be unmoved ''
Dr. P. Saravanamuttuhu

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Sri Lankan Muslims strike over Dambulla mosque

A strike is in force across Muslim areas of eastern Sri Lanka, following threats against a mosque in the central town of Dambulla. Many public services have shut down, although Muslim-led demonstrations have been halted by the military.

Education is one area where we are badly serving the people of the North and rural children in general

.''...there are no plans either in Colombo or in Provincial Capitals to address these issues soon. I will refer in a detailed discussion of the meetings to some of the horror stories I heard, which result not from deliberate neglect, but simply from a system that is no longer accountable.''
Prof Rajiva Wijesinha MP

JHU awaiting implementation of mosque removal order

The JHU, a key partner in the UPFA government, says it is keeping a close watch over whether the order by prime minister D.M. Jayaratne for the removal of a mosque in the Dambulla sacred area is implemented.

Cluster bombs in Sri Lanka: From denial to discovery

Ravi Nessman from Associated Press has broken what’s perhaps the most important story on the war, since it ended three years ago. In a story published by AP a few hours ago, he notes,

APNewsBreak: UN Finds Cluster Bombs in Sri Lanka

A report from a U.N. mine removal expert says unexploded cluster munitions have been found in northern Sri Lanka, appearing to confirm, for the first time, that they were used in that country's long civil war. The revelation is likely to increase calls for an international investigation into possible war crimes stemming from the bloody final months of fighting in the quarter-century civil war that ended in May 2009.

Free Education: A letter to the President

An Open letter to the President Rajapaksa by the Federation of University Teachers
The accolades that Sri Lanka has received since independence for its impressive social indicators has been the result of the establishment and protection of two basic institutions: universal free health and free education services.

Free media shown the door at BIA .

The bulk of the independent media was prevented from covering the arrival of the six Sri Lankan fishermen who arrived at the Bandaranayake International Airport (BIA) earlier today, 10 days after they were rescued by Spanish marines from the captivity of Somali pirates.

Muslims call prayer meeting on Dambulla

Muslims in Sri Lanka have said that the storming of the Jumma Mosque of Dambulla by a gang may negatively impact the reconciliation process among communities. The Jamiyathul Ulama has called upon Muslims to collectively hold a fast on Thursday and on Friday against the incident.

State ‘sovereignty’ important, but not unlimited

''There are domestic responsibilities on human rights and there are international responsibilities on human rights that any government should adhere to. There is no escape or short cuts. Human rights are higher laws like Dhamma Thath of yore. Human rights are no longer mere ‘internal affairs.’ Neither ‘sovereignty’ nor the ‘principle of non-interference’ constitutes a defence for human rights violations.''
B Dr. Laksiri Fernando

Army Chief on post-war role: 200,000 in numbers,no evidence for war crimes probe, new doctrine after LLRC

"The army will continue to maintain 200,000 personnel to meet the country’s security needs. In spite of peace, Sri Lanka’s security needs should be met. It’ll be a grave mistake on our part to lower defences," the Army Commander said.

Discovering the White Van in a Troubled Democracy

JC Weliamuna
In a country that has achieved so much in literacy, education and social development, is it not indeed unfortunate that “White Van” has frightened the entire nation? Appearance of a white van assures a disappearance of some one. If you Google or do any other internet search

Rajiva's article is defamatory - Ministry of External Affairs

The attention of the Ministry of External Affairs has been drawn to the article under the headline, “Intrigues by the Ministry of External Affairs” authored by Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha and published in the Daily Mirror of Thursday, April 19.

It is the right time for MR-UN Chief .

UN chief Ban Ki-moon said that it is the right time for President Mahinda Rajapaksa to address the issues including rights violation in a speedy and judicious manner.

Mervyn Silva terrorising area

Kelaniya Pradeshiya Sabha members today charged that Minister Mervyn Silva was terrorising the area after being appointed as the organiser for Kelaniya. Silva has opened a party office in the Kelaniya area, and party members say there is a presence and potential for violence stemming from the minister’s close associates.

Implications and Ramifications of the Attack on the Masjidul Khaira Mosque:

Surendra Ajit Rupasinghe:
On 20th April 2012- Friday, a mob of some 2,000 led by Buddhist priests occupied and ransacked the Masjidul Khaira Mosque, obstructing those engaged in prayer. Even the police and the Special Task Force could not prevent the mayhem. The attack was carried out on the grounds that the mosque had been constructed on a site designated as a sacred Buddhist area.

Demolition of Dambulla Mosque means loss of Muslim support to govt

Latheef Farook
Prime Minister D.M. Dayaratne’s order to demolish a 65 year old mosque in Dambulla and instead build a mosque in another place  strikes at the very root of religious freedom .It also shocked and hurt the island’s Muslim community.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Discussed 13th Amendment, says Sushma

Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj said on Tuesday that during her recent meeting with Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa she discussed devolution of powers to provinces, as envisaged in the 13th Amendment to the island nation's Constitution.

No assurance from Rajapaksa, says Sri Lankan daily

An English newspaper in Sri Lanka has claimed that no discussion was held regarding devolution of powers to States when a delegation of Indian MPs met President Mahinda Rajapaksa on April 21, and when he met the leader of the delegation for an unscheduled meeting on April 20.

Fake video and lies: The strange case of Dambulla’s Inamaluwe Sumangala thero

The Mahanayaka of the Rangiri Dambulu chapter Inamaluwe Sumangala thero, one of the key figures in the on-going tensions in Dambulla over the presence of a mosque and kovil near his Temple, perhaps in response to the public outcry against the violence instigated by him, has told the BBC that TV footage that showed monks engaged in violence – including one monk disrobing and exposing himself to the mosque – were fake.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Iran expresses confidence re Dambulla mosque issue

Iranian government has expressed confidence in the Prime Minister to resolve the controversy on the attempts to remove a mosque from a site in Dambulla. Several International and Muslim organisations had asked the government to take action to resolve the issue. 

Dicision on Mohan Peiris on 17th May

The Court case in relation to the disappearance of Journalist Prageeth Ekneliyagoda was taken up for hearing at the Appeals Court in Colombo on April 24. The hearing opened as the Sandhya’s attorney explained the proceedings of the case held at the Magistrate Court in Homagama on March 26. 

There is a conspiracy within the govt. against the govt. - JHU

''He warned that the latest effort of this conspiracy was the tension caused between Buddhists and Muslims regarding the mosque that has been located within the Dambulla sacred zone. He claimed that this was a clear sign of a Muslim invasion which has been endorsed by certain people in the government whom he claimed should be punished severely

SLMC wants full powers for PCS

Amid India calling for power devolution based on the 13th Amendment, the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC), a government ally, had at its meeting with the visiting Indian delegation last week stressed the need to abolish the Concurrent List of the 13th Amendment and the embedded powers fully devolved to the provinces.

Mob Attack on Lawyer: Court orders the Priests and the others in the photos be arrested and produced in Court

''When Mr. Bandaranaike was assassinated the whole country was mourning the tragic loss of its leader and what shocked the consciousness of the nation was that a Buddhist priest was accused of shooting and another Chief Priest of conspiring to kill the revered leader. But, the accused monk retained the services of Lawyers who without fear of reprisal or even a remark being cast against him for appearing for the suspects at the trial. ''

Though govt pledged to implement 55 recommendations at Geneva UPR in 2008 performance has not been satisfactory

''All these recommendations were accepted in 2008 by the government, including 55 other such recommendations which it pledged to implement. However, actual implementation has been hardly satisfactory with most government ministries not even knowing what has been promised internationally.''

Army will be withdrawn, Rajapaksa assures MPs

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa had given an assurance of withdrawing the army from civilian areas at the earliest to the Indian joint parliamentary delegation, which visited the country between April 16 and 21.

US resolution in Geneva, a David and Goliath fight – Minister Samarasinghe (respond to accusations )

''The same newspaper recently published an article about what took place in Geneva. The author of this article claimed he’s a Leftist who had observed what happened on the day of the vote. It was very obvious that the motive of writing that article and publishing it was to create friction between me and the President. It is unfortunate that there are some devious personalities who are trying to pursue their private agendas in the midst of a country facing serious challenges.'' 

Delivering on the LLRC Recommendations

Immediately after the Resolution on SL was adopted in Geneva a month ago, US Secretary of State issued a short media release that said the US believes, the resolution “encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to continue on the path toward reconciliation” and for the second time said, “….. and I look forward to discussing future actions with Foreign Minister Peiris soon.”

Sri Lanka: Reading Between The Lines On Indian Delegation To Colombo – Analysis

 Col. R. Hariharan
There are both positives and negatives in the reports on the Indian parliamentary delegation’s six-day visit to Colombo. The reports include a statement of Mrs Sushma Swaraj, the multi-party delegation leader issued at the end of the visit, as well as inputs on the press conference she addressed in Colombo.

Sri Lankan govt asks trustees to relocate mosque after 60 years

Sri Lanka’s government has advised the trustees of a 60-year-old Muslim mosque north of the capital to relocate the structure after angry protests by Buddhist monks. Prime Minister D.M. Jayaratne reacted after demonstrations by monks and their followers on Friday triggered tension in the pilgrim town of Dambulla.

Will inter-confessional peace come to Sri Lanka? - Voice of Russia

A new inter-ethnic and inter-confessional conflict has broken out In Sri Lanka - a country where a bloody civil war had ended only three years ago. On Friday, a crowd led by Buddhist monks gathered near a mosque building in the town of Dambulla, thus interfering with the Muslims’ Friday prayer. Muslims were forced to hide inside the building for a long time.

Sri Lanka to demolish mosque after monks' protest

Sri Lankan officials have decided to demolish a mosque and a Hindu temple under pressure from Buddhist monks who demanded their removal from a Buddhist sacred area.

Sri Lanka to demolish mosque after monks' protest

Sri Lankan officials have decided to demolish a mosque and a Hindu temple under pressure from Buddhist monks who demanded their removal from a Buddhist sacred area.

MR’s 13A plus assurance: Govt. disputes Indian claim

The Sri Lankan Government yesterday strongly denied a statement attributed to Indian Opposition Leader, Sushma Swaraj that her delegation had received an assurance from President Mahinda Rajapaksa of his commitment to the 13th Amendment and his readiness to go even beyond it.

Tamils want only dhal not develution - JVP

 ''The Gampaha District MP said that according to their sources the northern people did not ask for 13 plus or anything like that. Instead, they wanted dhal at affordable prices, he said. ''

No one can go above Mervyn in Kelaniya

Every Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) activity in the Kelaniya electorate should be conducted through the electoral organizer, Minister of Economic Development Basil Rajapaksa said. This includes all activities including development projects, he said.

Muslims decry radical Buddhist mosque attack

The main umbrella group of Sri Lankan Muslims says radical Buddhists are trying to damage peaceful co-existence between the country's main ethnic communities.  The statement came three days after hardline Buddhists tried to storm a mosque, after which the government said it would be demolished and relocated.

If the resolution not implemented second resolution will come - Tamara

''This resolution is only a first step.. If, by March 2013, the Government does not implement the LLRC, but, more importantly, if it does not take the additional measures required of it, then we may see a call for implementation of Recommendaton 1 (B) of the Darusman Panel, the immediate establishment by the Secretary-General of an independent international investigative and monitoring mechanism, ....”

Tamil Eelam is for Tamil Nadu politicians what the full moon is for hungry wolves -The Hindu

Tamil ‘Eelam’ is for Tamil Nadu politicians what the full moon is for hungry wolves. All their howling is indicative, not of any yearning for a distant, dreamy Eelam, but of the baser urges of the politics of the here-and-now.

Complaint against police over arrest of 33

A human rights group has filed a complaint against police over the arrest of 33 men in Borella.
 The respondents cited are the IGP, the police spokesman, OICs of 16 police stations and a police constable named Mahinda (no: 7494).

Monday, April 23, 2012

Lankan Tamils for political solution

The popular emotion among the Tamils and the parties representing them in Sri Lanka was that a political solution to the ethnic crisis should be found within the framework of an united Sri Lanka (SL), CPM Member of Parliament T K Rangarajan said here on Sunday.

Sri Lanka orders mosque move after Buddhist protest

The Sri Lankan government ordered a mosque relocated on Sunday after Buddhist monks said the 50-year-old structure had been built illegally in an area sacred to Buddhists and threatened to demolish it.

Destroying Confidence; Who was the young lady?

Prof Rajiva Wijesinha 
Last week, I was told, a mysterious lady approached the President while he was at a funeral, knelt at his feet, and came out with a terrifying story. The person who told me the story evidently thought of the lady as she who must not be named, but she was nothing like the fictional character who could not be named. Young and rich and beautiful, I believe she had long raven locks and sparkling dimples.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Post-Geneva reality and the predicament Sri Lanka is in today

Tissa Jayatilaka
 One can understand to a certain extent the angst of some Sri Lankans over the injury caused to national pride by the ‘Geneva Resolution’ of March 2012.  One can also understand the sense of frustration of certain others who hold the view that the Resolution does not go far enough to hold Sri Lanka’s feet closer to the fire.

The legitimate needs of Tamil people for equality, dignity, justice and self-respect in Sri Lanka

Sushma Swaraj
 Distinguished representatives of the media,
 I am happy to lead the All-Party delegation of Parliamentarians from India on this important visit to Sri Lanka. We are happy to meet you and share our impressions from this visit. I would like to start by introducing my colleagues from the delegation.

Dambulla mosque to be relocated

A decision was made to relocate the mosque in Dambulla following discussions with several Muslim political and religious leaders, Media Secretary to the Prime Minister’s office, Sisira Wijesinghe told Ceylon Today Online.

Sri Lanka state airline loses Rs19.1bn in 2011

State-run SriLankan Airlines has made an operating loss of 19.1 billion rupees in 2011, up from a group net loss of 6.03 billion rupees in 2010, a budget carrier has lost 455 million rupees, official data shows.

SL delegation to Washington includes Namal and Sajin Vas

The Sri Lankan delegation to Washington DC in May, in response to an invitation by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to further engage on reconciliation processes and accountability issues will include External Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris, Ministry of External Affairs Monitoring MP SajinVaasGunewardane, UPFA Hambantota District MP NamalRajapaksa and Presidential Secretary LalithWeeratunge, Ceylon Today learns.

Sri Lanka rejects call to withdraw army from north

Sri Lanka's president has rejected a call by Indian legislators to withdraw soldiers from the island's former war zone in the north where minority Tamils are concentrated, his spokesman said Sunday.  President Mahinda Rajapakse told a delegation of visiting Indian lawmakers that troops could not be pulled out despite the end of the decades-long Tamil separatist war in 2009.

President again pledges 13 Plus to India

Swaraj makes claim at news conference but presidential spokesman refuses comment; LSSP, CP call for maximum implementation of LLRC recommendations; President Mahinda Rajapaksa will enforce provisions of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution and “go beyond it,” India’s Opposition Leader Sushma Swaraj said yesterday.

395 males rounded up in Wanathamulla; 25 arrested after abduction attempt failed

A 1000 strong Special Task Force (STF) and police contingent unleashed excessive force and dished out collective punishment as they rounded up 395 male residents of T 20 Watta, and Seewali Patumaga, Wanathamulla, yesterday.

And yet another suspect dies in police custody

 Wasantha Ramanayake
The mysterious death of Nimal Chandrasiri Dahanayke (42), a fisherman of Thalpitiya, Wadduwa, who died last Sunday (15) while in the custody of the Wadduwa Police, is the latest addition to a long list of deaths in police custody.

Anti-Indian propaganda intensifies in Sri Lanka after UN vote

Wasantha Rupasinghe
Since India voted in favour of a US-sponsored resolution on Sri Lankan human rights abuses at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) last month, sections of the political and media establishment in Colombo have initiated a campaign of anti-Indian propaganda.

Lanka must address reconciliation with sense of urgency:Swaraj

Sri Lanka must address the issue of reconciliation with the Tamil minority in the country with "a sense of urgency", Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj said here today. Swaraj, who is leading a 12-member Indian parliamentary delegation here, said she had told Sri Lankan

India urges Sri Lanka to probe alleged abuses

Visiting Indian lawmakers have urged Sri Lanka to investigate alleged human rights violations during the country's civil war and end the militarization of former war zones.

Colombo must persuade TNA to join talks: Sushma

Noting that talks to find a negotiated political solution to the Tamil ethnic question are deadlocked, the Indian parliamentary delegation, which wound up its six-day tour of Sri Lanka, has emphasised to the government that the stalemate has to be ended.

Congress MPs silent on war crimes

Preferring to keep mum on the issue of war crimes committed by the Sri Lankan army at the fag end of the Eelam war, the four Congress MPS who were part of the Parliamentary delegation that returned after a six-day tour of Sri Lanka on Saturday said that they had urged the Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa to resettle the displaced Tamils and expedite the implementation of the 13th amendment and recommendations of the LLRC report.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Mervyn challenges SLFP CC to try and take action

SLFP General Secretary, Minister Maithripala Sirisena said that there were two disciplinary enquiries instituted against Public Affairs Minister Mervyn Silva. One was regarding the allegations of extortion levelled against him by members of the Kelaniya Pradeshiya Sabha, including the chairman.

Mosque attack : Those in top rungs of Govt. behind it – Muslim Congress Secretary and M.P. Hassen Ali

Muslim Congress Secretary and M .P Hassen Ali told Lanka e News that the Muslim mosque which had been in existence for the last 50 years at Dambulla coming under attack while the army and police officers were standing idle and watching is clearly because they are being supported by those at high places in the Govt.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Indian leadership miffed by Rajapaksa defiance wanted to rap Colombo on the knuckles

Seema Sengupta
India’s decision to vote in favor of a United States sponsored UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) resolution censuring the Sri Lankan government for alleged Human Rights aberration during the ethnic conflict has raised several eyebrows.

It is not Ethical to Speak of Difficulties I Faced During the White Flag case as an Appeal is Still Proceeding - Judge.T.M.P.B. Warawewa

''At the time I joined the judiciary, prominence was given to career judges and there were chief justices who had started as magistrates and those days it took only about nine years for a career judge to be promoted as a High Court Judge.  In my case it took me 18 years and when I was appointed as a High Court Judge, there were only 22 other High Court Judges.''

Harsha slams CB on politicisation

*  Monetary authority not part of president’s political party
*  Wants LLRC recommendation guaranteeing CB independence
* Need truthful assessments of economy,
*  No disclosure on exchange rate, IIFA and failed Commonwealth Games bid

Karunanidhi can have Eelam in India: Gota .

Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa yesterday said if DMK Leader and former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi’s unfulfilled dream was a Tamil Eelam, he should work for it in India because the largest population of Tamils live in the Tamil Nadu state of India and not in Sri Lanka.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Kilinochchi town -What is taking place in the Town? Development or Destruction

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse’s son and Sri Lankan parliamentarian Namal Rajapakse says that he will turn the Kilinochchi town like the Hambanthota town of the Rajapakse family .  Three years have passed since the Sinhala army captured the town of Kilinochhci. The Rajapakse government says that massive development programs have been undertaken in Kilinochchi.

Judge Warawewa says request for extension refused .

High Court Judge W.T.M.P.B. Warawewa has revealed that a request made by the Attorney-General’s Department to further extend his term of office by a year to enable him to hear several pending cases has been refused by the Chief Justice.

Party leaders asked to make suggestions on implementing LLRC report .

Leaders of parties representing the government have been asked to submit suggestions on implementing the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) report, Minister Maitripala Sirisena said.

CPJ Impunity Index - Sri Lanka

Deadly, unpunished violence against the press rose sharply in Pakistan and Mexico, continuing a dark, years-long trend in both nations, the Committee to Protect Journalists has found in its newly updated Impunity Index.

SLFP suspends disciplinary action against members

The Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) has decided to suspend disciplinary action against errant party members because of the lack of support from the party hierarchy for such action, a senior party source said yesterday. He said the main reason for this decision was the failure to take disciplinary action against controversial minister Mervyn Silva.

Declare assets or face Bribery Commission, politicians told

The Polls Chief Mahinda Deshapriya’s decision to crack the whip in a bid to enforce compliance with the law that requires those holding political office to declare assets has had the desired impact. All political parties are making a frantic effort to meet the deadline he has set.

SL highest military spender in South Asia

Sri Lanka has become the South Asian region’s highest military spender for 2011. As a percentage of Gross Domestic Production, Sri Lanka has spent three percent on the military and secured the first place among South Asian countries.

“I have always worked according to my conscience.” .

The letter informing me of the date of the interview had been delivered to my Colombo office address.
However on the very last day before the date on which the interviews were to be held I suddenly decided to come to Colombo to meet some friends.

To implement or not to implement

Editorial, DM
The UNHRC resolution on Sri Lanka means different things to different people. Its opponents and proponents keep contradicting themselves. The government which made it out to be a frontal assault on Sri Lanka's sovereignty in the run-up to last month's Geneva vote is now claiming that it is non-binding.

Tamil student abducted, killed near SL military zone in Jaffna

18-year-old Sivalingam Sivakumaran, a student from Kerudaavil village in Vadamaraadchi North of Jaffna district, was found slain inside a bush, 2 km away from his house on Wednesday. The Tamil student was abducted five days ago, on 13 April after 6:00 p.m., when he had left his house towards the historic Chelvach-channithi temple, according to the family of the victim.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Indian MPs delegation for early solution to Tamils issue

Here to assess the condition of ethnic Tamils post-war, an Indian parliamentary delegation on Tuesday nudged Sri Lanka to quickly resolve the decades-old conflict by devolving powers to areas dominated by minority Tamils envisaged under a Constitutional amendment.

Sushma stresses on 13A. .

India’s opposition leader Ms. Sushma Swaraj who is currently leading a parliamentary delegation on a visit to Sri Lanka stressed yesterday that the government should evolve a political solution to the national question based on the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, informed sources said yesterday.

Sajith tells visiting Indian MPs: Political solution shouldn’t affect unitary status

*India wants grievances of Tamils addressed, *TNA leader lashes out at government
UNP Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa yesterday told the visiting Indian parliamentary delegation that a post-war political solution should be within a unitary and undivided Sri Lanka.

DMK wants Centre to press U.N. for referendum on ‘Tamil Eelam'

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, a constituent of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance at the Centre, on Tuesday urged the Union government to press the United Nations for a referendum on a ‘Tamil Eelam' in Sri Lanka.
Welcoming the demand for the referendum made by the Tamil community, Mr. Karunanidhi recalled his earlier remarks that if at all he had one unfulfilled desire, it was the creation of a separate State for the Sri Lankan Tamils.

BJP meeting will ask Sri Lanka to treat Tamils as equal citizens

The two-day Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) State delegates' meet, beginning in Madurai on April 28, will urge Sri Lanka to treat Tamils there as equal citizens, P. Muralidhara Rao, one of the general secretaries of the party, told a press conference here on Tuesday.

The futility that is Omanthai: Post-war Sri Lanka’s reconciliation shortfalls

Omanthai Checkpoint, 12.30am: As the conductor switches on the bright florescent lights inside the bus, the bus comes to an abrupt halt, jolting awake blurry-eyed passengers travelling from Jaffna to Colombo, who, in response to the instruction “okkomala bag arung eliyata bahinna…” (“Everyone, take all your bags and get off the bus…”), scramble around in search of their respective bags, still half asleep.

Not having a HR ministry is a greatest blunder

''One of the greatest blunders we suffered from was the failure to ensure, after the 2010 election, a Ministry dedicated to Human Rights. I was at fault myself here, for when I was told by the Secretary to the President that this would come under the Foreign Ministry, I thought that an acceptable solution since I believed the Minister had vision as well as commitment in this regard. ''
Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.

‘Learn, learn, learn’: Lessons for the Left in Lanka

Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka
Each generation brings its own collective formation and experience to the Left project. Each historical period produces its own Left or mutates the existing Left.

Where responsibility lies for the President being let down

''I continue then to believe that the President is the victim of these delays, rather than the cause. But I suppose I must grant to my critic that, if there is no effort even now to ensure structural changes, then one will have to grant, as Harry Truman noted, that the buck stops at the top. ''
Rajiva Wijesinha

Indian MPs delegation presses forward on Tamil question

R.K. Radhakrishnan
The Indian joint parliamentary delegation spent Tuesday listening to arguments from people on both sides of the Tamil question and exploring the way forward to achieving the legitimate aspirations of the Tamils in Sri Lanka.

No power, no devolution - TNA tells India

Sri Lanka’s major Tamil party expressed optimism that the visiting Indian parliamentary delegation will take positive steps towards addressing social, political and safety issues faced by Tamils in the north and east.

RS 1 Billion gloves fraud detected at health ministry

Daily Mirror Editorial
Treasury Secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundara had ordered a probe to ascertain how a certain medical equipment supplier to the Health Ministry was able to sell a huge stock of surgical gloves to hospitals while violating tender procedures.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Govt. attitude on national question disappointing: TNA

The lack of interest on the part of the government to resume talks on finding a lasting solution to the national question was disappointing, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) spokesman Suresh Premachandran said yesterday. 
He said his party could not go forward without first arriving at a consensus with the government.

FR petitioner dies in police custody

An individual who had filed a fundamental rights petition against the Wadduwa police OIC died on Sunday (15) while in police custody, police spokesperson SP Ajith Rohana told Ceylon Today Online. “He had fainted in the Wadduwa police cell and was thereafter admitted to the Panadura hospital and died upon admission,” SP Rohana said.

Lionel Bopage, former JVP general secretary, on new left party, Tamil rights and state repression

 Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The Frontline Socialist Party (FSP) was launched in Colombo, Sri Lanka, amidst international media outcry about the illegal abduction of four of its activists in the lead up to the launch by security forces. Two of these abductees, Premakumar Gunaratnam (an Australian citizen) and Dimuth Atygalle (a prominent woman leader of the group) have since been released.

No objection to Kudankulam nuclear power plant, says Sri Lanka

''Earlier this month, reports had quoted Lankan energy minister Champika Ranawaka as saying that Sri Lanka was to refer the matter at the IAEA sessions in September since the country feared that any radiation from the plant will affect it. However, Atomic Energy Authority's chairman R L Wijayawardana denied any such move.''

AIADMK, DMK should have joined MPs' team: CPI(M)

India should ensure that the Parliamentary delegation to Sri Lanka succeeds in its mission of finding a political solution to the ethnic problem, CPI (M) State secretary G. Ramakrishnan said on Monday. In a statement here, he said that instead of keeping away from the delegation, the DMK, an ally of the Congress-led UPA at the Centre, and the AIADMK should have been part of it.

Many extreme crimes to be shelved including Sudarman Radaliyagoda case

It is revealed that a situation has arisen where police investigations into 86 extreme crimes are to be shelved. According to CID sources the crimes to be shelved involve extortion, murder and drug peddling.

The harassment of Ms. Sandya Ekneligoda by the government’s supporters in Geneva and by the Attorney General’s department, for joining the UN Human Rights Council

Mrs. Sandya Ekneligoda was one of the speakers during a side event held on 19th March 2012 during the 19th sessions of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. The side event was titled “Rule of Law and human rights violations in Sri Lanka: Perspectives from women, minorities and families of disappeared”.

Kiriella to raise privilege issue against Gota

UNP MP Lakshman Kiriella said today, that he would raise a privilege issue in parliament against Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakshe, who is a public servant for challenging him against a  statement made by him.

Gota challenges Kiriella .

Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa has challenged UNP MP Lakshman Kiriella to give the name of the mother who, according to Kiriella, had claimed to have seen the person who abducted her son at the Police Station went she went to make a complaint about the abduction.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Lanka visit should not become a conducted tour: BJP

The proposed visit by the Indian delegation to Sri Lanka might not bring expected results if the MPs fail to meet the affected Tamils and leaders of Tamil community in Sri Lanka, said Bharatiya Janata Party leader L. Ganesan.

How Gotabhaya ‘helped’ Col. Karuna go to UK on a diplomatic passport under a false name

Ranjith Jayasundera 
Hello Friends,
There is a raging controversy on about the abduction and release of Frontline Socialist Party leaders Kumar Gunaratnam and Dimuthu Attygalle.

SRI LANKA: Dengue numbers triple in first quarter of 2012

Dengue remains endemic in Sri Lanka
Sri Lankan health personnel have reported a three-fold increase in the number of recorded dengue fever cases in the first quarter of this year.

SL military's draconian ‘civil’ rule hardens further in Vanni

The village level Rural Development Societies (RDS), which have started functioning again, especially in the agricultural areas of Vanni mainland, have been subjected to harassments by the occupying SL military in recent days.

Tamil village in Galle attacked over dispute

Several Tamil families living at a village in Elpitiya, Galle have been assaulted and their houses robbed and set on fire following a dispute involving an Army soldier.

Instead of Abducting they could have asked me to come

Dimuthu Attygala, a controversial character last week, found a few minutes to speak to The Nation just after her appearance at the party office in Kotte after missing 72 hours. Her party, Socialist Frontline Party, accused the government on abduction of its stalwarts Premakumar Gunarathnam and Dimuthu Attygala.

HRC officials check police building for Lalith and Kugan

Officials of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) made a surprise visit to the Police Welfare Building at Pettah on Friday following information that two members of the JVP dissident group who went missing in Jaffna last December were being held there.

Post Geneva Challenges and the way forward

Javid Yusuf 
It would be unwise to brush aside the resolution adopted by the United Nations Human Rights Council last month in Geneva as being of no consequence to Sri Lanka. We could choose to ignore it only at our own peril.

Nobody’s child left to die

Killed or abandoned out-of-wedlock newborns are on the rise, with little or no hope of normal lives for those who survive. Dumped in drains or left in the woods, babies are being abandoned and left to die by their mothers. Only a few fortunate ones survive. According to the latest police statistics, January 2012 recorded 26 incidents of abandoned babies, while in 2011, 206 incidents of abandoned babies were reported.

‘Who says Sinhalese are against devolving powers to Tamils? That’s absolute rubbish!’ says Chandrika Kumaratunga

Former Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga has vehemently rubbished the claim being made by some people in the present government that the majority Sinhalese are opposed to devolving political power to the minority Tamils in her island-nation.

Will launch of Frontline Socialist Party lead to revival of ‘Left’ in Sri Lanka?

By Niel Wijethilaka and K. Govindan (Nava Sama Samaja Party)
 More than 5,000 people packed Colombo’s Sugathadasa stadium for the inaugural conference of the Peratugami Samajawadi Pakshaya (Frontline Socialist Party – FSP) on 9 April 2012.

Sunday, April 15, 2012


The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (Chamber) having discussed the LLRC Report, is of opinion that the Government and all other political parties in the country, need to examine the far reaching reconditions made in the report to achieve meaningful reconciliation and sustained inclusive economic growth, to fully benefit from the peace dividend achieved after ending the long drawn out conflict, that prevented our nation from reaping the full potential.

Post Geneva Stakes: Strategic Agendas, Imperatives of the Regime and Path to Freedom and Democracy:

Surendra Ajit Rupasinghe
The aftermath of the Geneva drama has brought out new dimensions and intensified  contradictions internationally, regionally and locally. This article is an initial attempt to strategically map the emerging scenario, position the various major players and locate their respective agendas, and charter a path to freedom and democracy.

The Kumara saga: Govt.'s credibility further eroded

 Sunday Times Political Editor
Most Sri Lankans enjoying the Avurudu festivities may be unaware that the country's security establishment has been preoccupied for weeks now about the changing political firmament. 

Many war missing could have obtained new identities: Gota

Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa yesterday said that many of those listed missing during the war could have obtained new identities courtesy foreign governments.

Breathing space for asylum seekers

Switzerland and European Union countries have suspended deporting Sri Lankans who seek asylum following the recent UNHRC resolution in Geneva, according to reports from Geneva.

Sri Lanka: Defence Secretary Is A Grim Impediment – Analysis

 Dr Kumar David
Lanka’s Defence Secretary Gothabaya, a brother of President Mahinda Rajapake, together with two other brothers (economics minister Basil and parliamentary speaker Chamal) comprise the inner cabal and power hub in the country. The triumvirate of president, defence secretary and ex army commander Sarath Fonseka are credited with winning the war against the LTTE and enjoy warmth in Sinhalese hearts.

Human Rights in Sri Lanka - A Perennial Question Mark

 Twenty years ago Mahinda Rajapaksa was a fiercely dedicated human rights lawyer and, along with Mangala Samaraweera, a pillar of strength to Mrs Sirimavo Bandaranaike who was heading the Mothers’ Front in southern Sri Lanka.

Indian MPs delegation to meet all Tamil groups in Sri Lanka

The Indian delegation of Members of Parliament, which arrives here on April 16, will have an opportunity to speak to all groups of Tamils in Sri Lanka – those in the Northern Province, Eastern Province, in the hills, and in Colombo.

Well-orchestrated drama to sling mud at Sri Lanka - State media

Last week’s horror drama featuring Premakumar Gunaratnam, alias Noel Mudalige, with the Australian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka Robyn Mudie as a ‘support actress’, exposed the concocted stories of the so-called white van abductions – a money-spinner for local NGO goons and bankrupt Opposition politicians.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Senior rugby players avoid national team bec Presidents's son being appointed as Captain

A group of Sri Lanka’s most senior national rugby players are staying away from the national team after being overlooked for the captaincy.

Sri Lanka Army warns Tamils to be wary

A top Sri Lankan Army commander has warned the Tamil people in the country's north to be wary of elements attempting to undermine the hard-earned peace.

US presses Sri Lanka over human rights

US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton on Friday urged Sri Lanka to build a "democratic nation" with full respect for human rights as it emerges from decades of ethnic war.

Power Losses - Sri Lanka power utility loses Rs25.5bn, debts balloon

Sri Lanka's state-run power utility, the Ceylon Electricity Board has lost 25.5 billion rupees in 2011 and run up debts of 121 billion rupees with a petroleum distributor and independent power producers.

Australia Has Just Been Given a Taste of “How It Works” in Sri Lanka

Hamish McDonald
D.R. Kaarthikeyan is a name renowned in India. He was the police officer who led the investigation into the assassination of the former Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in May 1991 by a woman wearing a belt bomb who came up close in a chaotic election rally.

Lalith, Kugan held at Police welfare building – AHRC

The Asian Human Rights Commission, as well as other human rights organisations have kept up a constant vigil on Lalith Kumar Weeraju and Kugan Murugan who were abducted on December 10, 2011 while engaged in putting up posters for the Human Rights Day.

Co-operatives: A better option to channel relief to war victims in Sri Lanka

It is no secret that many members of the Tamil diaspora are actively involved in helping the victims of the war in Sri Lanka in some way or the other. There are those who send assistance direct to known or identified victims. There are others who respond to calls from various organisations for funds to help them. Such organisations are now available in abundance both in the United Kingdom and elsewhere.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Lalith, Kugan held at Police welfare building – AHRC

 The Asian Human Rights Commission, as well as other human rights organisations have kept up a constant vigil on Lalith Kumar Weeraju and Kugan Murugan who were abducted on December 10, 2011 while engaged in putting up posters for the Human Rights Day.

The disappeared in Sri Lanka, worries grow about Sri Lankan democracy.''

''His friends told the authorities and he was released. He says that intervention by the president, the defence secretary and his in-law saved his life. But rights groups naturally ask how such powerful men knew whom to contact to get him free. And precisely how, too, did Gotabaya Rajapaksa help with the Australian request to find Mr Gunaratnam? Such mysteries go unanswered—and worries grow about Sri Lankan democracy.''

Govt must ensure ‘White van’ abductions and all forms of involuntary disappearances are stopped

 Mothers and Daughters of Lanka
We are deeply disturbed by the events leading to the disappearance and subesequent ‘reappearance’ of Dimutu Attygalle and Premakumar Gunaratnam two senior leaders of the newly constituted Frontline Socialist Party (FSP).

Why India voted against Lanka

Patali Champika Ranawaka
Some years ago, the question of the ownership of the Kachchathivu Islands was raised in the chamber of India’s Lok Sabha. Opposition lawmakers demanded to know why India was bowing down before a small nation like Sri Lanka and having its pride insulted. In reply, the leaders of India’s Congress party said there were no issues regarding pride among brothers.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Sri Lanka faces yet another rights abuse allegation

 R. K. Radhakrishnan
Two senior members of a breakaway faction of the JVP who vanished on April 6 and reappeared a few days later have accused the security forces of abducting them.

Former PM Rathnasiri is honestly ashamed

 Former prime minister Rathnasiri Wickramanayake says he is honestly ashamed to be a Sri Lankan at a time when abductions and other signs of lawlessness are obvious in the country.

Premakumar says no JVP hand in his abduction

Addressing Sri Lankan journalists via skype from Australia yesterday (Apr. 11), FSP politburo member Premakumar Gunaratnam rejected claims that the JVP was linked to his abduction.

Sri Lanka was divided into two factions at UN Human Rights Council in Geneva

Guido Paola Brunetti
The divisions within the Sri Lankan delegation to the 19th Session of the Human Rights Council in March 2012 reflected at least two different political orientations, which had already become manifest at the 18th Session of the Council in September 2011.

Mysterious Abductions When Will They Stop?

Mr. Gunaratnam is the leader of a breakaway faction of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP). His radical splinter group, the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP), claimed that Mr. Gunaratnam and women's wing leader Dimuthu Atigala had been taken away by security authorities ahead of the party's formal launch on Monday.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

‘Kumara Mahattaya can be brought before the law’ - HRC, SL

With permission from the government of Australia, where he is a citizen, Premakumar Gunaratnam alias Kumara Mahattaya could be brought before the law, said Dr. Pratibha Mahanamahewa.

Activists want panel report implemented

Rights groups have urged the government to implement all the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) in the wake of last month’s US sponsored Geneva resolution.  The people’s participation in the process must also be addressed, they say.

Govt. must take responsibility – TUC

The government is directly involved in the abductions of Kumar Gunaratnam and Dimuthu Attlygalle, the Trade Union Confederation (TUC) alleged.

The External Affairs Ministry Are Liars – Dayan Jayatilleka

'' Three simple and basic points. Adhere to the letter and spirit of the totality of our Republican Constitution and implement it in full in all parts of our small island; fully restore the pre-war situation and practice of law and order; expeditiously implement the recommendations of the LLRC.''

'We were white vanned' - Dimuthu Artigala

Ms. Attygalle who heads the international wing of the newly formed Frontline Socialist Party said armed abductors tried to extract information from her on the political activities of the new party. Dimuthu (42) who also heads the party's women's wing, said she did not sense anything dangerous when she alighted from the bus to go home in Godagama on Saturday evening.

Australian, Premakumar Gunarathnma claims Sri Lankan agents sexually tortured him

THE Australian man abducted in Sri Lanka over the weekend has contradicted the claims of the Colombo government, claiming it abducted him, and were it not for Canberra's intervention he would have faced certain death.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Abducted by officers from both Police and security forces. - Dimuthu

Kumar Gunaratnam and Dimuthu Attigala leaders of the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP)have been freed by their captors. The Police said that Gunaratnam who is an Australian citizen has been deported as he has overstayed visa. Dimuthu Attigala addressing a press conference in Colombo said that she sensed that she was abducted by officers from both Police and security forces.

The government's abduction industry exposed .

In one of the most shameful episodes ever to be revealed the Sri Lankan government's involvement in the 'abduction industry' was exposed last night (April 9) when the government took action to deport Premakumar Gunarathnam alias Ratnayake Mudiyanselage Dayalal who was abducted on April 6, 2012.

Foreign missions briefed on Gunarthnam case

The External Affairs Ministry informed all the diplomatic missions based in Colombo today that Kumar Gunaratnam was deported from Sri Lanka because his stay in the country was in breach of immigration laws.
Issuing statement, the Ministry said Mr. Gunaratnam had now re-appeared and had in fact been deported from Sri Lanka because his stay in this country was in breach of Sri Lanka’s Immigration laws and therefore illegal.

Dimuthu claims abductors quizzed Premakumar & her

Women’s leader of the FSP Dimuthu Attygalle says a group in a white van had abducted her as she had been accompanying a colleague from their head office on April 06.  Ms. Attygalle, who was freed by her abductors near the head office at Madiwela in Kotte this morning (Apr. 10), held a media briefing a few hours later.

Australia knew G’ratnam used bogus name, Noel Mudalige, to enter SL

Passport No. N 1016123 Arrival at BIA on Sept. 4, 2011 Visa overstayed
It has now been revealed that the missing Frontline Socialist Party (FSP) leader, Premkumar Gunaratnam, used an Australian passport (N 1016123) bearing the name, Noel Mudalige, to return to Sri Lanka last September.

Wimal, Tissa demand speedy action to locate missing JVP rebels

The National Freedom Front (NFF) yesterday warned that the alleged disappearance of Premkumar Gunaratnam, leader of the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP) and activist, Ms. Dimuthu Attygalle would strengthen the ongoing campaign targeting Sri Lanka over accountability issues.

Strengthen civil society to cope with Geneva resolution

Jehan Perera
More than a fortnight after the passage of the resolution on Sri Lanka in the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, the Sri Lankan government continues to give mixed messages about its implementation. Within the government coalition itself there are polarized views.

Centre Urged to Take Up Tamils’ Issue With Sri Lanka

The CPI-M today urged the Centre to take up political and diplomatic efforts to ensure full rehabilitation and resettlement of the Tamil people in Sri Lanka.

‘Disappeared’ Kumar Gunarathnam released and deported at 7:40 AM

Aussie citizen Kumar Gunarathnam released due to Australian pressure. What about “Disappeared” woman activist & ex-JVP MP Dimuthu Attygalle?  “Disappeared” Premakumar Gunarathnam alias Kumar Mahathaya aka Noel Mudalige released & deported on UL314 as overstay at 7.40 am this morning

'Missing in Sri Lanka': Australian socialist safe

 An Australian man reportedly abducted in Sri Lanka by security forces is safe, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs. Premakumar Gunaratnam, a 42-year-old socialist politician who moved to Australia in 2006, was reported missing on April 7.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Abductions reach dangerous heights - NfR

NfR Sri Lanka, a network of Sri Lankan journalists and human rights defenders, condemns in very strong terms the recent abduction of Mr. Premakumar Gunarathnam and Ms. Dimuthu Attygalle, two leading political activist in the country.

A Wake up Call for Sri Lanka at the UNHRC

Smruti S. Pattanaik
India’s vote in favour of the UN Human Rights Commission (UNHRC) resolution against Sri Lanka titled “Promoting reconciliation and accountability in Sri Lanka” is a well calculated move to provide the required push for resolving the Tamil issue.

Sri Lanka is yet to deliver on any promise made on political autonomy

India Voting against Colombo akin to diplomatic hara-kiri, Minister  says
After India's recent ‘unexpected' vote against Colombo at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva, newspaper columns in Sri Lanka have contended that the relations between the two countries have touched the lowest point.

Sri Lanka revenue crunch continues in 2012

 High state spending is continuing to put pressure on the economy with billions of rupees being printed in April to meet expenses on top of earlier bank borrowings, official data shows.

Colombo builds Sinhala cantonment in Maathakal

Genocidal Sri Lanka, which poses Thiruvadi-nilai area of Maathakal, the north-western tip of the Jaffna Peninsula as a ‘Sacred Zone’ of the Sinhala-Buddhists, is now engaged in constructing permanent quarters for the occupying Sri Lanka Navy in the lands of uprooted Tamils who are denied access to their land that had gone under SL military declared High Security Zone 20 years back, news sources in Jaffna said.

‘Traitors give priority to their rugby clubs over country’ - Yoshitha Rajapaksa

Captain of the Sri Lanka rugby team Yoshitha Rajapaksa alleges that players are prioritizing their clubs over the country, and says such players fall into the category of traitors.

Deal with it legally- family members of Premakumar

Family members of missing Front Line Socialist Party Leader Premkumar Gunaratnam today requested the authorities to deal with him in a legally accepted manner if he has done anything wrong and to release him if he is innocent.D. R. Gunaratnam, the mother of the JVPbreakaway group leader told a news conference today in Colombo that her son had been illegally abducted by unknown persons.

Disappearance of JVP rebel group leader:Australia asked to prove G’ratnam’s return to Colombo

The Sri Lankan government has asked the Australian government to furnish details of the leader of rebel JVP faction, Premakumar Gunaratnam’s arrival in Sri Lanka. It made this request when Australian High Commissioner in Colombo, Robyn Mudie, took up the issue of his disappearance with the government over the weekend.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

‘Jana Aragalaya members’ abduction, a serious infringement..’ - JVP

The political bureau of the JVP says democracy in the country is being infringed upon daily and all masses should rally to defeat the undemocratic and repressive conditions carried out by the weak rulers.

LLRC – A child’s play

Robin Hood
The official statement made by the foreign minister rejecting to accept to implement the resolution adopted in the United Nations HRC is a serious blunder committed by the Rajapakse regime in the long run. Presenting to implement and rejecting for no reason to substantiate its credibility confirms nothing but ostentation of the government.

Adventures Of The Undead-Tiger And Other (Rajapaksa) Fairy Tales

Tisaranee Gunasekara
“…the closer the kingdom of God, the more the demons are on the offensive”.
Olivier Roy (Holy Ignorance)
Whenever the Rajapaksa administration is in need, the Tiger emerges from the underworld into a brief but useful life.

Geneva Crisis

Victor Ivan
It is correct for Sri Lanka to express its protest against the US sponsored United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Resolution against Sri Lanka. Yet, the government had apparently failed to mobilize the protest move in a manner conducive to safeguarding the dignity of the country.

Sinhala-Only National Anthem, Buddha Statues, Beheaded Images and Other Omens

Tisaranee Gunasekara
Gotabhaya Rajapaksa does not want the national anthem to be sung in Tamil. Two more Buddha statues are being erected Jaffna by the Lankan Armed Forces. The statues of two Tamils, one Indian and one Englishman, located in the Batticaloa town High Security Zone, have been beheaded.

Naseby urges proceeding with devolution process UNP and TNA confirms support for 13A

The Sri Lankan government should carry out devolution process without any further delay to ensure post-LTTE national reconciliation, declared Lord Naseby PC. Based on the recommendations made by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), too, called for devolution of powers to the provinces.

Chidambaram defends India backing US-sponsored resolution

Home Minister P Chidambaram on Saturday defended India supporting the US-sponsored resolution at UN's top human rights body censuring Sri Lanka for alleged rights violations in the war against LTTE, saying it would not have been carried as expected if the country had hesitated.

Kandiah’s grocery store in Geneva and Geenva embarrassment

As it turns out, Geneva has proved to be an abiding embarrassment to the government not just because of the US resolution but the manner in which the government handled the issue. This is still the subject of discussion in the local media.  Certainly, never before in living memory has the conduct of foreign policy been the subject of so much media discussion after an event.

Destruction of venerated statues of Tamil nationals continues : another destruction in Jaffna

The decapitation of two more statues held in esteem by Tamil nationals has been reported in Jaffna.
 An unidentified group that entered two Hindu temples (Kovils) in the Jaffna district yesterday night had broken the heads of two statues of the Vel carts.

The rule of law and war crimes

 Kishali Pinto Jayawardene 
In the months following the March 2012 rebuke administered to the Sri Lankan government by the United Nations Human Rights Council, critical self introspection is necessary as to some of the basic assumptions which drive the post Geneva discussions.

Strong protest by India; Gandhi statue being rebuilt

India yesterday strongly protested and expressed concern over the vandalizing of a statue of India’s independence hero Mahatma Gandhi in Batticaloa town and offered assistance to restore it.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Who is Kshenuka ? The real culprit in the Sri Lankan Diplomacy ( 2nd round of SL diplomatic raw)

1. In November 2009, after her arrival as the new Permanent Representative to the UN, replacing Dr Dayan Jayatilleke, Kshenuka Senewiratne contracted an LTTE company Shelvazug to renovate the Official Residence for more than 150,000 Swiss Francs (i.e., more than 20 million Rupees). Her husband did part of the renovation work and received payment from the Mission via the LTTE company.

‘Leaders’ disappearance aimed at undermining party launch’ – FSP

The Frontline Socialist Party alleges the disappearance of its chief Premakumar Gunaratnam and women’s leader Dimuthu Attygalle is aimed at undermining the establishment of their party.  In a statement, the FSP said, “We hold the state and the government responsible for these abductions and disappearances and demand that they be released immediately, or be prosecuted legally.”

Latest victims of a heinous trend: Abduction of political activists Premakumar Gunaratnam and Dimuthu Attygalle

Political activists and leaders of the People’s Struggle Movement in Sri Lanka, Mr. Premakumar Gunaratnam[1] and Ms. Dimithu Attygalle[2] disappeared on 6th April 2012.  Prior to their disappearance both activists had been preparing for the first convention of the Frontline Socialist Party, a party formed by a dissident group from the opposition party, Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP – meaning People’s Liberation FRont).

They Were Very Professional” Says Minister’s Abducted Brother-In-Law

Sagara Senaratne who was abducted in Kotte last Monday evening near Naga Viharaya Kotte believes that he was released within a few hours because of his brother-in-law Minister Jeewan Kumaratunge’s timely intervention.
 Postal Services Minister Jeewan Kumaratunge was at a dinner with a Chinese delegation along with Mr. Mahesh, an Additional Secretary to the President at his residence when Senaratne’s driver informed him of the abduction.

SRI LANKA: Two arrested from JVP dissident group, Place of detention not known - AHRC

Mr. Premakumar Gunarathnam the leader of the JVP dissident group and Ms. Dimuthu Attigala a member of the same group are reported to be missing from yesterday night. According to a report, published today in the Daily Mirror, both have been arrested. However the grounds on which they were arrested or the location of the place of detention have not been revealed.

Had Sri Lanka taken steps to implement the 13th amendment, India may never have associated itself with the UNHCR resolution

Nirupama Subramanian
As Sri Lanka mulls over last month's United Nations Human Rights Council resolution, it may look back with nostalgia at its 2009 triumph at Geneva. Then, barely a week after its victory over the LTTE, a group of western countries wanted a resolution passed against Sri Lanka for the civilian deaths and other alleged rights violations by the army during the last stages of the operation.

No compensation for dead LTTE members

The government has rejected a recommendation by the LLRC to pay compensation in lieu of dead LTTE members, ‘Divaina’ reports.’

Now criminal white Van trails behind artistes

Two of Sri Lanka’s popular artistes have been subjected to death threats , according to reports reaching Lanka e news.  One of them who received threats is an artiste who had participated in a number of electronic media programs and is popular for being candidly critical of the political situation in the country.

LSSP wants Govt. to fix time frame for implementing LLRC Report

The LSSP, a constituent member of the UPFA government says that a time frame should be fixed for implementing the LLRC recommendations.

Heads of statues of venerated people smashed in Batticaloa

Tension prevailed in the Batticaloa city as the residents awoke yesterday morning to find that several statues in the heart of the town had been beheaded by an unknown group the previous night.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Statues vandalized in Batticaloa

Four statutes in the Batticaloa town had been vandalized by a group of unidentified persons early this morning (6) police said. Two statutes next to the Batticaloa clock tower depicting the father of India Mahathma Ghandi and founder of the world scout movement, Lord Baden Powell were among the four statues that were vandalized.

Hirunika faults CID

Slain Presidential Advisor Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra’s daughter Hirunika Premachandra yesterday expressed disappointment over the conduct of the CID in relation to the Magistrate’s Court inquiry involving the killing of her father.

More Sri Lankans Suffering Since War Ended

WASHINGTON, D.C.-- More Sri Lankans are suffering today than before the decades-long civil war in the country ended in 2009. One in five or more Sri Lankans have rated their lives poorly enough to be considered "suffering" over the past three years, underscoring the challenges many continue to face as their nation heals.

‘Singing national anthem in Tamil, a ridiculous idea’ - Gota

Singing the national anthem in the Tamil language, which is a recommendations of the LLRC, is a ridiculous and unpractical idea, said defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.

‘You do not want the TNA because you want to remove the roots of our right to equality, justice and dignity’

R. Sampanthan MP
by Rajavarothayam Sampanthan
Mr. Deputy Chairman of Committees, we are discussing in the House today, an Adjournment Motion pertaining to the Resolution passed at the UN Human Rights Council at the 19th Session last month.

Before I commence my views in regard to what happened at Geneva , I think I need to outline briefly the history and the growth of the tragedy of the Tamil people in this country and the Tamil issue, to put things in proper perspective. The Sri Lankan State has been insensitive and callous in dealing with the issues pertaining to the Tamil people, particularly in the North and the East.

New Farmland grab: Sri Lanka’s farmlands are being aggressively marketed as investment for agro-export agriculture

 B. Skanthakumar 
Sri Lanka’s farmlands are being aggressively marketed as investment opportunities for agro-export agriculture by the island’s foreign missions in the Gulf, and to Gulf-based businesses, including at the recently concluded Sri Lanka Expo 2012 (28-31 March) in Colombo.

Sri Lankan diplomat may avoid questioning on war crimes claims

Diplomat facing allegations of crimes against humanity is set to return to Sri Lanka, raising fears he will avoid questioning.   The Foreign Office has been warned it is running out of time to take action against a senior London-based Sri Lankan diplomat who is facing allegations of complicity in crimes against humanity.

Bandula making arbitrary decisions - Stalin ( Ceylon teachers Union)

The Ceylon Teachers Union (CTU) yesterday (05) accused the Education Ministry of making arbitrary decisions with regard to education.

French push to pursue probe on killing of 17 Aid workers .

The French Embassy has taken fresh diplomatic initiatives  in pursuing the case regarding the killing of 17 workers attached to the French branch of the international aid agency called ‘Action against Hunger’ in August, 2006 in Muttur, informed sources said.

Govt. failed post war SL –TNA

The Tamil community in Sri Lanka should be integrated into the Sri Lankan nation and not be assimilated, said TNA Leader R. Sampanthan.

University dons claim new circular violates academic freedom

University teachers yesterday accused the government of violating their academic freedom through a new circular prohibiting State sector officials from attending additional meetings, seminars and lectures without prior approval from the relevant ministry.

Parliament to decide LLRC implementation - Media Minister

Government is committed to implement Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) recommendations deemed acceptable to Sri Lanka but will not give in to undue pressure , says cabinet spokesman, acting Media Minister Lakshman Yapa Abyeywardena.