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Akashi hosts Tiger delegation to traditional meal

Mar 20 (TN) Japanís Special Peace Envoy to Sri Lanka, Mr. Yasushi Akashi, Thursday hosted a lunch for the Liberation Tigersí delegation at the sixth round of direct talks between the LTTE and the Sri Lankan government, officials said. more..

Chemical emission make husband and wife sick

Mar 20 (SLA) A complaint made by Mrs. M. HEMALATHA at BATTICALOA Police station stated that two letters delivered to her and her husband contained some poisonous chemical elements which made them sick and seek medical treatment from BATTICALOA hospital on 18 March 2003. more..

Men in restricted zone released on Police bail

Mar 20 (SLA) Naval troops on routine duty apprehended three suspects while they were engaged in fishing in restricted zone, in the general sea area of SAND BAY, TRINCOMALEE on 19 March 2003. They have been handed over to TRINCOMALEE HARBOUR POLICE with their items for investigations. more..

Testing Numbers

Mar 20 (LBO) The Asian Development Bank has selected Sri Lanka as one of the test beds, for a survey on economic data gathering based on purchasing power equivalence. The project is part of the global International Comparison Programme (ICP) to calculate purchasing power parities (PPP) of countries. more..

Sri Lanka coach urged to stay on by Jayasuriya

Mar 20 (CI) Sri Lanka captain Sanath Jayasuriya hopes that coach Dav Whatmore will consider extending his contract which expires at the end of May. Whatmore, who was appointed in 1999 for a second stint in charge, has confirmed that he will discuss his future with the Sri Lanka Cricket Board shortly. more..

New Vice Chancellor for Jaffna University

Mar 20 (PSL) Prof. S. Mohandas has been appointed the Vice Chancellor of the University of Jaffna. The Presidential appointment took effect on March 12. Prof. Mohandas a Bachelor of Science (Hons) graduate from the University of Colombo went on to obtain his PhD in Agricultural Chemistry from the University of Adelaide. more..

War in Iraq; no immediate plans evacuate SL migrant workers-FM

Mar 20 (PRIU) The Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry sources said today there are no immediate plans to airlift migrant workers in West Asia. The situation has to be assessed first says the Ministry. more..

India's MRPL joins IOC in gas oil sales to Sri Lanka

Mar 20 (Reuters) India's Mangalore Refinery Petrochemicals said on Thursday it will export 420,000 tonnes of gas oil and jet fuel to Sri Lanka over the next six months. It said the deal enables Indian Oil Corp (IOC) to expand retail sales in the newly opened Sri Lankan oil market, more..

Stocks end up as war begins, funds wait

Mar 20 (Reuters) Stocks bounced up on Thursday after the U.S.-led attack on Iraq began as some investors saw an end to the uncertainty that had sapped the market, but brokers said funds were on the sidelines. more..

India is silent third party in Sri Lanka peace bid

Mar 20 (DJ) While Norway leads diplomatic peace making efforts for Sri Lanka and Japan plays ambassador for drawing international aid, a silent third party has been key in rejuvenating the economy battered by two decades of civil conflict: India. more..

Lanka assured full quantum of aid - Akashi

Mar 20 (DOI) The donor community which has pledged aid to Sri Lanka at the upcoming aid conference would not withdraw any significant assistance already pledged despite possible economic repercussions as a result of the war threat in Iraq, Minister Prof G.L Peiris declared yesterday. more..

Minister assures safety of Lankan expatriates in Middle East

Mar 20 (DOI) Every possible step has been taken to evacuate the 500,000 Sri Lankan expatriate workers in the Middle East to safer places with the assistance of Sri Lankan Embassies there, Employment and Labour Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said yesterday. more..

Tea for all seasons

Mar 20 (DOI) Merrill J. Fernando's contribution to tea has been a one-man revolution. As our most traditional export, tea, like the mountains and valleys in which it grows has had its ups and downs. It is at its peak today and Sri Lanka owes this to Merrill whose vision saw that pure Ceylon tea with imaginative packaging hit the international market with a bang. more..

Re-opened Wilpattu Park to get facelift

Mar 20 (DOI) "The Prime Minister has promised to provide all facilities needed for tourists and the public visiting the Wilpattu National Park," said Environment and Natural Resources Minister Rukman Senanayake. He re-opened the park after a lapse of 18 years on Sunday, March 16. more..

Cricketing failure too much for them

Mar 20 (DN) A cricket fan in Kirinde was so upset when Sri Lankan Cricket captain Sanath Jayasuriya got out during the semi-final against Australia on Tuesday that he had a heart attack and died instantly. To add to the tragedy the fan's father on hearing the news also collapsed and died, Police said. more..

Govt. says no to HSZ scale-down

Mar 20 (DM) The government delegation yesterday rejected an LTTE request to scale down the military presence in high security zones in Jaffna -- a move the rebel delegation said was necessary to expedite the resettlement of displaced people. more..

Russian training vessel stops over in Sri Lanka

Mar 20 (VN) The Russian training vessel 'Nadezhda' on a world cruise with 90 cadets on board sailed into the Colombo port last week. Built in 1991, 'Nadezhda' of Vladivostok's Marine State University, is on a 15-month voyage across the Pacific Ocean, the Indian Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, the Baltic Sea and the North Sea. more..

Jayasuriya to discuss his future with selectors

Mar 20 (CI) Sanath Jayasuriya will discuss his future as Sri Lanka captain with selectors once he returns from South Africa. The Sri Lanka team is due back in Colombo on Friday morning having lost their semi-final clash to Australia by 48 runs on Thursday. more..

Reconciling communities remains a challenge to the peace process

Mar 20 (Reuters) Like many Sri Lankans, the leader of the Muslim refugee community in Trincomalee, in eastern part of Sri Lanka, Mr. Rahamathulla Shahib, is waiting patiently to see the outcome of the peace process that is currently taking place in his country. more..

Sri Lanka's Muslims left out of Japanese talks

Mar 20 (ABC) Sri lankan negotiators and Tamil separatist are discussing human rights issues in continuing talks in the Japanese town of Hakone. However, the LTTE have resisted allowing a separate Muslim delegation at the talks. more..

World Bank says reconstruction fund established

Mar 20 (DJ) The World Bank Thursday announced the establishment of a trust fund aimed at supporting Sri Lanka's reconstruction efforts. "The North East Reconstruction Fund will enable the people in the northeast of Sri Lanka to reap early and tangible benefits of the ongoing peace process," more..

Sri Lanka: A promise of peace

Mar 20 (IHT) While the rest of the world seems to be marching to war, Sri Lanka, wearied by a military stalemate after 18 years of war, is walking slowly, haltingly and surprisingly toward peace. It is a peace tempered, however, by the remembrance of the 64,000 people who have been killed. more..

Sri Lankan opposition calls Bush, Blair war criminals

Mar 20 (AFP) Sri Lanka's main opposition Thursday said US President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair were "war criminals" after the launch of military strikes on Iraq. more..

Sri Lanka peace talks close amid fears of Iraqi fallout

Mar 20 (AFP) Sri Lanka's peace negotiators wrapped up talks in this Japanese spa resort amid fears that war in Iraq could overshadow their fledgling peace bid and divert much-needed foreign cash, officials said. more..

'No breakthrough' in Sri Lanka talks

Mar 20 (BBC) The latest round of Sri Lanka peace talks are drawing to a close having failed to achieve any breakthroughs, Norwegian negotiators say. A joint communique is due to be issued at the formal end of the talks on Friday in the Japanese resort of Hakone. more..

Sri Lankan national airline cancels flight to Kuwait

Mar 20 (AFP) Sri Lanka's national carrier, SriLankan Airlines, said it had cancelled Thursday's flight to Kuwait in view of the war in the Gulf region. The airline flies five flights per week to Kuwait and any decision to cancel other flights scheduled for this week would be taken depending on the situation, more..

Sri Lanka says it's greatly disturbed by war on Iraq

Mar 20 (AP) Sri Lanka said Thursday it was deeply concerned by the U.S.-led attack on Iraq and urged a rapid end to the conflict ensuring Iraq's sovereignty and safety for its people. "Sri Lanka ... is gravely concerned about the massive political, economic, social and above all, humanitarian consequences" of the war, the foreign ministry said. more..

Sri Lankan makes a case for the right to water

Mar 21 (JT) Sumika Perera is in the midst of a fight against the Sri Lankan government and international lending agencies, which are trying to privatize her country's water. more..

US, UK dip. missions given extra security

Mar 21 (Island) The US embassy and the British High Commission in Colombo were given additional security as a joint US-British offensive against Iraq got underway, authoritative security officials said. more..

Remand for Indian fishermen extended

Mar 21 (TN) The Mannar district judge, Mr. M. A. Mohideen, ordered Thursday that the remand for twenty-six Indian fishermen, who were arrested by local fishermen and handed over to the police on March 5 for trespassing into Sri Lankan waters, be extended until April 3, sources said. more..


Mar 21 (LBO) Sri Lanka will have its first 3G frequency auction in April, a limited exercise which will offer three slots in the 1800 MHz range. The auction will also be limited to the four mobile operators, who will make closed bids for the three slots. more..

Wealth Management

Mar 21 (LBO) The government has formed a new company to manage fee and fund-based activities of state corporations including the Mahapola Trust Fund. National Wealth Corporation will be a 100 percent government owned entity, but staffed by top private sector professionals, more..

Vehicle owners fear fuel shortage in Northeast

Mar 21 (TN) With the onset of war in Iraq, gas stations in Sri Lanka including Northeast are struggling to meet the increased demand for petrol and kerosine from residents who fear imminent shortage of fuel. Long lines can be seen throughout the day at several stations which had supply of fuel, sources said. more..

Core political issues addressed at peace talks

Mar 21 (DOI) Ground breaking talks on the core political issues commenced yesterday when the Govt and LTTE took up the fiscal aspect of power sharing during the morning sessions on the 3rd day of the 6th round of peace talks in this mountain enclave, 89 kms West of Tokyo. more..

Lanka hopes for quick end to conflict

Mar 21 (DOI) Sri Lanka said it was greatly disturbed by the outbreak of conflict in the Middle East and urged a quick end to the crisis based on the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Iraq and the safety, security and welfare of its people, in a statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs last evening. more..

Sufficient food stocks for three months - Ravi

Mar 21 (DOI) The Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Ravi Karunanayake yesterday assured Parliament that sufficient food stocks are available in the country for the next three months. more..

No petroleum price hike

Mar 21 (DOI) The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) yesterday said that no price increase will be imposed on any petroleum product including petrol, diesel and kerosene at this moment under the cover of the war situation in the Gulf region. more..

Case against Tilan Wijesinghe:Prosecution's objection overruled

Mar 21 (DN) Colombo High Court Judge Chandra Ekanayaka yesterday allowed an application by the Defence and granted permission to the accused Tilan Wijesinghe to go on an Investment Promotion trip to Thailand between March 24 and March 29, 2003. more..

Colombo 'disturbed by war'

Mar 21 (Gulf) Sri Lanka yesterday expressed dismay at the start of military action against Iraq and urged steps to revive the "abandoned" United Nations. more..

Chinese trawler attacked off MULLAITTIVU

Mar 21 (SLA) A Chinese fishing trawler engaged in fishing in the general sea area of CHUDDIKULAM, about 16 nautical miles east of CHUDDIKULAM, about 33 km northwest of MULLAITTIVU had been attacked during morning hours on 20 March 2003, causing the trawler to sink. more..

LTTE held firewood cutters set free

Mar 21 (SLA) Three woodcutters, who went missing while cutting firewood in the general jungle area of NIDANWALA had been released by the LTTE on 18 March 2003. more..

Missing man found dead

Mar 21 (SLA) The dead body of a civilian, who had gone missing since 18 March 2003 had been recovered from the general area of CHEDDIKULAM, about 12 km west of VAVUNIYA on 20 March 2003 around 10.00 a.m. more..

Four in restricted zone arrested

Mar 21 (SLA) Naval troops on duty in the general Harbour area of DUTCH BAY, TRINCOMALEE on 19 March 2003 had arrested a fiber glass dinghy with four persons on board while they were in the restricted zone. more..

Sri Lanka to source more oil products from IOC

Mar 21 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's state-run oil firm Ceylon Petroleum Co (Ceypetco) said on Friday it soon will source more of its monthly oil products imports from Indian Oil Corp (IOC) instead of via monthly tenders in the open market. more..

Shares end: market may ease off next eeek

Mar 21 (DJ) Shares erased early losses to end slightly higher Friday, mainly boosted by a one-off local transaction in Lanka Orix Leasing Co., brokers said. The Colombo All Share Index closed up 1.16 points, or 0.2%, at 718.09, more..

Sri Lanka: Time for the broom or mere spring cleaning?

Mar 21 (CI) So it is over. Sri Lankan cricket runs on World Cup cycles and four years of grooming, planning and polishing under coach Dav Whatmore and Sanath Jayasuriya produced a place in the semi-finals. For a nation with heavy expectations, judgment beckons: has the time come for sweeping changes or will a little spring cleaning suffice? more..

Sri Lanka: Trying to stop one war and ending up with two

Mar 21 (AFP) Sri Lanka's warring parties moved to this hill resort near Mount Fuji for a quiet retreat to make peace, but return home Friday trying to grapple with another war -- this time not of their making. more..

India quietly working to help Sri Lanka rejuvenate its shattered economy

Mar 21 (AP) While Norway leads peace efforts and Japan canvasses for international aid, India is helping rejuvenate Sri Lanka's economy, battered by two decades of civil conflict. more..

Sri Lanka talks end with no deals

Mar 21 (AFP) Sri Lanka's peace negotiators officially ended four days of talks here without agreement on key human rights issues and amid reports of fresh violence at home, officials said. more..

Sri Lanka Tigers allow rivals to contest polls

Mar 21 (AFP) Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels wound up Japanese-hosted peace talks here Friday by agreeing to allow rival groups to contest local elections in areas under their control. more..