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Crackdown on obscene posters

July 15 (TP) The government has ordered a crackdown on dozens of obscene posters outside cinema halls, saying stern action would be taken against those responsible for displaying these indecent billboards, posters and cut outs outside cinema halls and in public places. more..

Sandalwood export racket busted

July 15 (TP) Sri Lankan Customs officers on Monday busted a long-standing racket involving the illegal export of white sandalwood, the Daily News reported. It said officials detected a package containing 164kg of white sandalwood in the baggage of a Sri Lankan businessman going to Hong Kong. more..

Minister Wickremanayake Speaks to Troops in Jaffna

July 15 (SLA) Deputy Minister of Defence Hon. Ratnasiri Wickremanayake in the company of Service Chiefs of the Army, Navy and Air Force visited Jaffna peninsula on Monday (12) in order to receive an update of the current security situation and exchange views with soldiers at the grass roots level. more..

Three youths hacked to death in Mulleriyawa

July 15 (DN) The gory murder of three youths in the early hours of yesterday has sent shockwaves among the populace in Kelanimulla, Mulleriyawa. An unidentified group of four who had entered their house around 3.30 am had chopped the three youths to death and had got away with Rs. 80,000 and jewellery worth over Rs.250,000, more..

Breakaway Tamil Tiger supporter gunned down in prison

July 15 (AFP) A supporter of the renegade Tamil Tiger commander who led an unprecedented split in the rebel group in March was gunned down by a fellow inmate at a jail in eastern Sri Lanka, officials said. more..

LTTE to oppose Chandrika's plan to consult MPs

July 15 (HT) The LTTE is expected to oppose President Chandrika Kumaratunga's proposal to establish a forum of political parties represented in parliament to discuss the issues to be raised in the peace talks on the ethnic question. more..

Seven out of seven for Sri Lanka A

July 15 (CI) Sri Lanka A made it seven wins out of seven with another emphatic victory, this time over Kent at Canterbury. They were made to sweat briefly, as Amjad Khan whipped out three wickets in a useful nine-over spell, but Kent's total of 188 for 9 proved insufficient, more..

Short Break

July 15 (LBO) The industrial sector will get a tariff-hike holiday in the short term when electricity prices are increased next time, assures Treasury Secretary Dr. P B Jayasundara. The last electricity tariff revision was two years ago in April 2002 and with increased dependency on thermal sources to generate power, more..

U.S. launches new consular affairs website

July 15 (USE) The U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs has released a new Internet website. This was announced on July 15. A completely re-designed, more user-friendly update of its former site, the new site is available at more..

APBI has selected Sri Lanka as the venue for its third conference

July 15 (Rupavahini) The Asia Pacific Broadcasting Institute has selected Sri Lanka as the venue for its third conference. The Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation has been selected the official media institution and the host for the conference. more..

Govt takes immediate measures to reduce sugar, dhal prices

July 15 (Rupavahini) The government decides to import sugar and dhal with immediate effect through the CWE. This move seeks to provide these commodities to consumers at reduced prices. Accordingly, the CWE will import sugar and dhal and release into the market wholesale. more..

Reform Pains

July 16 (LBO) Civil rights activists warn that Sri Lanka is in danger of unfavourable reforms because of poor application of international trade agreements. Human rights groups are drawing attention to legal reforms - brought on by multilateral and bilateral trade agreements that can work against the country if not implemented with care. more..

Security Check

July 16 (LBO) The United States and Sri Lanka will soon enter discussions regarding the island's participation in "MegaPorts," a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) initiative to curb the illicit movement of radioactive materials worldwide. more..

Treasury Secretary invites exporters for talks

July 16 (LBO) The Treasury Secretary gave an open invitation to exporters and SME’s to form industry clusters under the National Council for Economic Development (NCED) on Thursday. more..

EPDP says party paper burnt

July 16 (TN) Copies of a Tamil weekly "Thinamurasu", published in Colombo by EPDP were burnt in Jaffna by unidentified persons Wednesday evening. The sources said an unidentified group abducted a motorcycle courier transporting bundles of Thinamurasu copies along the Jaffna-Point Pedro road to be distributed to agents. more..

Indian trawlers continue poaching in northern sea

July 16 (TN) Vadamarachi North Fisheries Societies Federation in Jaffna district Thursday complained that hundreds of Indian trawlers are daily engaged in poaching in the Sri Lankan northern territorial waters. These Indian trawlers are seen about 12 km from the shore of Vadamarachchi, Federation sources said. more..

New ambulance boat service for Jaffna Islets

July 16 (TN) The Ambulance Boat service to be inaugurated early August to serve the residents of Jaffna islets will operate the Boat out of Kurukkadduvan Jetty in Punguduthivu, said Deputy Health Service Commissioner for Jaffna district, Dr.E.Theivendram, local media reported. more..

Campaign to repeal PTA to be launched

July 16 (TN) The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) and the Centre for Human Rights and Development (CHRD), which have their headquarters in Colombo, are to launch a campaign to repeal the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), which is in operation for the last 25 years. more..

Globalization does not benefit rural masses -Kadirgamar

July 16 (PRIU) The main challenges faced by Sri Lanka are market reforms and the response to the economic crises according to Lakshman Kadirgamar. The Foreign Minister was speaking to the joint Conference of the Commonwealth Business Council and the Royal Institute for International Affairs, in London yesterday. more..

“Relationship with World Bank will go from strength to strength” –President

July 16 (PRIU) President Kumaratunga said her Government was focusing on private-public sector dialogue in order to achieve a strong economy and ensure good governance. Such a dialogue was essential for formulating good economic and development policies she said. more..

GCMMF mulls setting up dairy plant in Sri Lanka

July 16 (FE) In an effort to deepen its presence in Sri Lanka, cooperative major Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) is believed to be now mulling the option of setting up a dairy plant in Sri Lanka. more..

Hold a proper inquiry into the killing of Batticaloa detainees

July 16 (LT) JVP requests the president in a letter to her to pay serious attention on the killing of two detainees inside the Batticaloa prison. By this letter signed by the propaganda secretary of the JVP Wimal Weerawansa, they emphasise that an immediate investigation should be carried out to find out as to how Wanni tigers manage to take weapons in to the Batticaloa prison. more..

A Media act from the joint opposition

July 16 (LT) The joint opposition is going to draft an act of on the media freedom. In a meeting held at the parliament complex yesterday the leader of the opposition Ranil Wickremasinghe said that this will exersice some control on the profile of the state media. more..

PM to seek Indian help for improving roads

July 16 (PTI) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse will seek India's help to improve the island's road network and rural communication during his visit to New Delhi beginning tomorrow. more..

PCB wary of betting mafia in Sri Lanka

July 16 (PTI) Pakistan cricketers have been warned by their Board to be very cautious of attempts by the illegal betting mafia, who may employ fancy fixing methods to influence the outcome of matches in the Asia Cup. more..

Rupee hits new low despite active cbank

July 16 (Reuters) The Sri Lanka rupee weakened to new life low in the absence of exporters selling dollars in the market to match import demand, dealers said on Friday. The rupee closed at 103.02 against the dollar, after opening at 102.95. more..

Graduates get jobs from the 1st of next month

July 16 (Rupavahini) Deputy finance minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya says that unemployed graduates will be given appointments in the public sector from the 1st of next month. Ten thousand applications are being short-listed at the computer division of the Colombo University. more..

Jayantha Dhanapala- Chief of Government Peace Secretariat is currently on a visit to East

July 16 (AT) The chief of the Government Peace Secretariat, Jayantha Dhanapala is currently on his visit to the East. He will inquire into the security situation in the province and matters pertaining to the peace process. more..

Chief ministers of Western, Southern and Sabaragamuwa provinces took their oaths

July 16 (AT) Chief ministers of the Western, Southern and Sabaragamuwa provinces took their oaths of their respective offices in three separate ceremonies held today. Reginald Cooray was sworn in by Governor Alavi Moulana as chief minister of the Western province this morning. more..

CWC delegation to meet the President today

July 16 (AT) Ceylon Workers Congress delegation led by its leader Arumugan Thondaman is expected to meet President Chandrika Kumaratunga today evening to discuss matters connected with CWC joining the United People’s Freedom Alliance Government. more..

Prime Minister will visit India tomorrow

July 16 (AT) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse will leave for India tomorrow on an official visit. This is the Prime Minister’s first foreign official tour since he was appointed as the premier. This four day official visit will end on July 19th and during this period, the Prime Minister is scheduled to meet Dr. Manmohan Singh his Indian counterpart. more..

Britain welcomes Sri Lankan attempts to restart the peace process

July 16 (AT) Mike O’ Brien Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs welcomed Sri Lanka’s attempts to restore the peace process. He also said there is much potential in Sri Lanka for British investments. more..

Sampanthan was stopped, stripped and checked by the US immigration

July 16 (AT) Reports emanating from Toronto, Canada, unfolds with a news that R.Sambanthan, Parliamentary leader of the Tamil National Alliance who was on his way from Washington Dulles airport to Toronto, on 09 July, was stopped, stripped and checked at the airport. more..

Certain young parliamentarians of JHU have been criticized for disregarding advice by party seniors

July 16 (AT) Some young parliamentarians of the Jathika Hela Urumaya have come in for criticism for ignoring the advice of party seniors. Former leader of the party Thilak Karunaratne warned that the people would lose faith in the party if this trend continued. more..

Consolidating power

July 16 (FL) The victory of Sri Lanka's ruling United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA), led by President Chandrika Kumaratunga, in the elections to six Provincial Councils held on July 10 was not unexpected. more..

War clouds on the horizon

July 16 (FL) Twenty-one painful years after Sri Lanka's worst anti-Tamil pogrom, the island's dreaded month, `Black July', started on an ominous note. On July 5, as the LTTE was preparing to commemorate its first suicide bomber, the first shots that heralded another round of violence were heard in eastern Sri Lanka. more..

Civilian’s house under hand grenade attack

July 16 (SLA) A hand grenade has been lobbed at a civilian’s house situated in the general area of TRINCOMALEE town by an unidentified person around 1.20 a.m. on 15 July 2004. The house of the civilian, T.H.GUNAPALA of NO.45, SIRIMAPURA, TRINCOMALEE and a van parked near the house have been slightly damaged due to the explosion. more..

LTTE cadre with two cyanide capsules arrested

July 16 (SLA) A suspected LTTE person has been arrested by the Police near the MATTAKKULIYA bus station on 15 July 2004 around 4.30 a.m. Two cyanide capsules and two LTTE letter headings have been recovered from the suspect named THUPPAIA KANGESHAN of THUNTHOTTAM, KALAMPULI, VAVUNIYA. more..

LTTE abduct fifty year old father and his son

July 16 (SLA) Two LTTE cadres had abducted a fifty year old father and his eldest son from the general area of THIRIKKOVIL states a complain made at the THIRIKKOVIL Police on 15 July 2004. more..

Hundred thousand drop in Jaffna student population - GA

July 16 (TN) Jaffna's student population has dwindled by more than a hundred thousand since 1995, Government Agent for the northern district said Friday, speaking at a meeting on development priorities in the peninsula. more..

PM intervenes, Health Alliance calls off fast unto death campaign

July 16 (DN) The Health Services Trade Union Alliance (HSTUA) yesterday called off its fast unto death campaign following discussions with Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse who intervened to resolve health sector salary anomalies. more..

Sucide bomber detailed to follow President

July 16 (G2L) The Modera police arrested an LTTE sucicide bomber at Mattakkuliya yesterday (15). He had been detailed by the Wanni leadership to target a function attended by political leaders including the President, intelligence sources said. more..

President committed to peace despite Batticaloa fears - Dhanapala

July 16 (TN) The delay in restarting peace talks between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers is due the preparation of the agenda, said Dr. Jayantha Dhanapala, chairman of the GOSL peace secretariat, speaking to journalists at the conclusion of his visit to Batticaloa Friday. more..

Govt. prepares for war -Jaffna undergrads

July 16 (TN) "Main aim of the Deputy Defense Minister Mr.Ratnasiri Wickremanayake's visit to Jaffna district was to put the security forces on red alert for another war. His inspection of SLA forward defense lines of Muhamalai has proved government's intention beyond doubt," said the Jaffna University Students Forum more..

USAID launches English teaching program in NE

July 16 (TN) Mr. Justin Sherman, Country Representative of USAID's Office Transition Initiatives (OTI) Thursday launched a US funded training of trainers program to enhance the standard of English teaching in the districts of Jaffna and Trincomalee. more..

US-Sri Lanka to jointly strengthen Colombo port security

July 16 (TN) The United States and the Sri Lanka will soon enter discussions regarding the island’s participation in ‘Mega Ports,’ a US Department of Energy initiative to curb the illicit movement of radioactive materials worldwide. Representatives from DOE’s ‘Mega Ports’ initiative will visit Colombo to discuss the program with Sri Lankan officials, more..

US military assistance weakens peace process -TNA

July 16 (TN) Jaffna district TNA parliamentarians Friday told Ms Cody Taylor, political officer of the United States embassy in Colombo that the efforts so far made to recognize the LTTE on par with the Government of Sri Lanka during the peace talks has been weakened by providing military training and assistance by the US government to the Sri Lankan armed forces. more..

India extends credit line to Sri Lanka

July 17 (TN) The Government of India has extended a special credit line with a value of US$150 million to Sri Lanka on request from Sri Lanka's President Chandrika Kumaratunga enabling Sri Lanka to import petroleum products from India, a statement from Ms.Kumaratunge's office said today. more..

UPFA lies on Tax amnesty act - Bandula Gunawardhana

July 17 (LT) UNP Parliamentarian Bandula Gunawardhana says that the Alliance government statement that the Tax Amnesty Act introduced by the United National Front government in sympathy with businessmen, who evaded tax payments, has deprived the government of Rs. 200,000 million is an utter lie. more..

No one mentioned activities of the Karuna faction hindered peace – Jayantha Dhanapala

July 17 (AT) Jayantha Dhanapala ,Secretary General of the Government Peace Secretariat, said that Sri Lankan President was committed to restoring permanent peace to the country. The Peace Secretariat is there engaged in efforts to make this a reality. more..