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Paper examines growing relevance of Tamil Diaspora

July 19 (TN) A policy paper prepared by the Department of Sociology and Centre of Refugee Studies, York University, Toronto, Canada, recommends diaspora circulation "as an effective tool for engaging the diaspora in a meaningful way in the reconstruction and development of war-torn areas in Sri Lanka," more..

Sri Lanka hold on for the win

July 19 (CI) Nuwan Zoysa made the early inroads, and Muttiah Muralitharan struck the decisive blow as Sri Lanka held on for a 12-run triumph over India in an engrossing Group B encounter at the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium. more..

Banks's allround display boosts West Indies

July 19 (CI) The West Indians continued to warm-up well ahead of next week's first Test on the second day of their tour match against Sri Lanka A at Shenley. Resuming on 351 for 6, Ridley Jacobs and Omari Banks added a further 183 runs together as the West Indians declared at 534 for 7. more..

Germany hails governments’ commitment towards the peace process

July 19 (Rupavahini) The German government extends its fullest cooperation for the Sri Lankan government's efforts to successfully implement the peace process. This was revealed at a meeting between foreign minister Lakshman Kadirgamar and visiting German foreign minister Joschka Fischer in Colombo, today. more..

Kandy Esala festival begins today

July 19 (Rupavahini) Traditional customs of launching the Perahera were held at Natha, Kataragama, Vishnu and Paththini Devalayas this morning. The Devala Perahera will be conducted from today to the 2nd in the temple premises. more..

Dividing Digital

July 19 (LBO) A top UN agency says information communications technology in the country needs to focus more on technology as a social leveler. The report by the UNDP says the government, regulators and other agencies need to band together to improve IT penetration. more..

Tax Reverse

July 19 (LBO) Attempts to recover taxes for which amnesty has been given could erode confidence in policy but not result in any significant recovery of lost taxes according to experts. The government announced it would claw back indirect taxes from the blanket tax amnesty granted by the UNF during its tenure of office. more..

Gain Drain

July 19 (LBO) Ten percent of the country’s reserves have been drained this year as the Central Bank intervened in the market to defend the Rupee, which is on a steady slide against the US dollar. more..

UNP activists are piling up pressure on party leader Ranil to step down

July 19 (AT) There appears to be growing pressure from UNP activists that party leader Ranil Wickremasinghe, who led them to defeat at many elections should step down. The pressure from the UNP rank and file mounted after the disastrous showing in the last elections held for the six provincial councils. more..

India and Sri Lanka agree to security and trade pacts

July 19 (AT) A top-level Sri Lankan delegation led by Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse has begun talks with Indian leaders on strengthening bilateral relations. The delegation held discussions yesterday with Indian finance and agriculture ministers in New Delhi. more..

A national seeds policy introduced

July 19 (LT) The ministry of agriculture livestock land and irrigation has decided to amend the existing seeds act and plant conservation act as an emergency task as they are full of flaws and could thus cause heavy losses to the agricultural sector. more..

Colombo hedges on Berlin’s UN bid

July 19 (AFP) German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer continued a five-country whistlestop Asian tour in Sri Lanka yesterday, receiving a cautious response to Berlin’s bid to win a permanent seat on the UN Security Council. more..

Govt seeks more fuel imports

July 19 (TP) The Sri Lankan government is resorting to diplomatic channels for long-term fuel imports from “friendly” countries while the country’s best-known diplomat Jayantha Dhanapala has been asked to negotiate a special loan facility from Opec. more..

Chandrika angry with newspaper

July 19 (TP) President Kumaratunga has filed a complaint against The Sunday Times to the Press Complaints Commission, the self-regulatory body functioning under the newspaper industry, the newspaper reported. It is the first time the president or a senior minister has filed a complaint to this new media regulatory that was launched last October. more..

New law to curb reckless drivers

July 19 (TP) Reckless Sri Lankan motorists beware! Offenders responsible for accidents resulting in the hospitalisation of the victims would be asked to pay the hospital bills of the latter in addition to a fine for the offence. more..

Norway in fresh Sri Lanka peace bid

July 19 (Jang) Sri Lanka’s peace broker Norway will launch another round of shuttle diplomacy amid an escalation of violence and fears that the island could slip back to war, a top diplomat said Sunday. more..

Plot to Kill President Bared

July 19 (AT) It was another covert preparation, for yet another an attempt on the life of President Chandrika Kumaratunga, but fortunately it had been nipped in the bud by the timely action of the Modera Police. According to the police report, one person was arrested by the Modera police. more..

Batticaloa jail murder accused transferred to Moneragala

July 19 (TN) Mahendran Puvitharan, the Batticaloa jail inmate accused of killing 'Satchi Master,' and another a key associate of renegade commander Karuna was transferred to a prison in Moneragala, Uva province, local media reported. more..

World Bank team holds workshop in Kilinochchi

July 19 (TN) World Bank Country Director for Sri Lanka, Mr. Peter Harrold, and a team of World Bank officials held a workshop on humanitarian delivery at the Planning and Development Secretariat in Kilinochchi Monday, LTTE's peace secretariat website said. more..

Fishing boats fail to return home

July 19 (SLA) Seven fishing boats went for fishing from the general areas of POINT PEDRO on 16th and 17th July 2004 with seventeen fishermen aboard had failed to return home as of 19th July 2004. more..

Men using dynamite for fishing arrested

July 19 (SLA) Four men aboard a fibre glass dinghy were arrested by naval troops in the general sea area of THALIVUPADU jetty in TALAIMANNAR on 17 July 2004 while they were fishing using dynamite. more..

Public asked not to cooperate with Security Forces

July 19 (SLA) LTTE leaflets asking the public to refrain from cooperating with Security Forces have been circulated in the general areas of VELVETTITURAI and MANALKADU on 17 July 2004. Some of those leaflets have also been pasted for public display.

Jaffna divisional secretary formally accepts mine-cleared cultivable lands

July 19 (SLA) In what was seen as another gesture of fast strengthening bonds of goodwill and co-operation between members of the public and the Security Forces, the Security Forces after fully de-mining an abandoned cultivable land of 18,01775 sq. meters in Chavakachcheri, returned the land for public use this weekend during a brief ceremony. more..

Firms prepare IPOs despite political woes

July 19 (Reuters) Companies and bankers are discounting economic uncertainties and political setbacks to push ahead with plans for share offerings this year. Peace talks to end the country's 21-year civil war have stalled and risks of renewed violence are rising following a suicide-bombing two weeks ago. more..

Fruit and vegetable industry aims to increase exports

July 19 (JF) The Sri Lanka Fruits and Vegetable Producers, Processors and Exporters Association is seeking government support to increase fruit and vegetable exports. The association believes it can double exports to more than LKR6bn (US$58.4m) in the coming year with government assistance. more..

Germany supports Norwegian-backed peace process

July 19 (Xinhua) Visiting German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer has said that Germany supports the ongoing Norwegian-backed peace process in Sri Lanka. After meeting with his Sri Lankan counterpart Lakshman Kadirgamar on Sunday, Fisher said that Germany welcomed the Sri Lankan government's commitment to the peace process. more..

Bata footwear occupation enters fourth week

July 19 (wsws) More than 500 workers have been occupying the Bata Shoe factory in Sri Lanka for nearly four weeks, demanding the reinstatement of their union branch leader and cancellation of the company’s retrenchment plans. more..

Site of planned court complex vandalised in Jaffna

July 19 (AFP) Unidentified attackers have vandalised the site where Sri Lanka’s chief justice laid a foundation stone to build a new court house in the former Tamil Tiger heartland of Jaffna, officials said on Sunday. more..

Garment industry gets support from Germany

July 19 (BT) German Government has accepted the request made by the Sri Lankan Government to introduce a 'General Scheme of Preference for least developed countries'. As a result, Sril Lankan garment industry will not suffer with the abolition of the quota system in 2005. more..

Govt. majority still unlikely

July 19 (G2L) Minister Anura Bandaranaike yesterday said that the government will prove its majority "when needed," moving away from the previously expressed stance that the government would demonstrate a majority when parliament meets on Tuesday. more..

Workshop on Asia Pacific regional broadcasting begins

July 19 (AT) A Regional Course on Peace Journalism will be held at the Training Institute of the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) from today to 29th of this month. The workshop is organized by the Asia Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development in Malaysia, together with Deutsche Welle Radio Training Centre in Germany and the SLBC. more..

JHU is ready to hold talks with the LTTE

July 19 (AT) The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) is to consider a proposal to negotiate with the LTTE on the basis of resuming peace talks. The LTTE hopes to conduct this dialogue with the help of Sinhala speaking top-brass official of the organization. more..

Maithripala Sirisena expresses confidence over majority

July 19 (AT) Leader of the House Maithripala Sirisena says the government is able to show and establish that it has the majority at a vote in the Parliament. He states the government is steady with the support of some opposition parties. more..

PM seeks Indian help for key infra projects

July 19 (AP) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse was keen to enlist India's help to improve the island's road network and rural communication during his visit to New Delhi, which began on Saturday. more..

United colours of India and Sri Lanka on Colombo roads

July 19 (IANS) Apart from the large number of other Indian connections in Sri Lanka, the presence of so many India-made three-wheelers and trucks give an Indian visitor here a sense of familiarity. more..

Govt nod for Norochcholai project

July 19 (DN) The Government will go-ahead with the Kalpitiya-Norochcholai Coal Power Plant Project, said Christian and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Milroy S. Fernando. Electricity is a most sought after commodity and the Ceylon Electricity Board cannot meet the rising demand for hydropower and the best and the cheapest alternate is coal power, he said. more..

Rajapakse holds talks with Manmohan Singh

July 19 (AFP) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse held talks here with Indian leaders on a range of issues including New Delhi's role in helping rebuild his strife-torn island nation, an official said. more..

CWC and SLMC rebels still on the fence

July 19 (IL) Amidst reports of a possible defection by two dissident Sri Lanka Muslim Congress MPs and the Ceylon Workers Congress to the Government, by yesterday both groups had not reached a final decision on the matter. more..

Move to deny accreditation to Indian de-miners in Lanka

July 19 (HT) There is a move to deny accreditation to two Indian de-mining NGOs working in the war-ravaged areas of North Sri Lanka, citing as reasons, poor performance and a lack of experience and competence in "humanitarian de-mining". more..

India, Sri Lanka to expedite military pact

July 19 (IANS) India and Sri Lanka Monday agreed to expedite the proposed defence cooperation agreement and expand economic cooperation. "Both sides agreed to expedite the (defence) agreement," Sri Lankan sources said more..

PTA was big blunder by Tamil politicians - TNA MP

July 20 (TN) “Tamil Parliamentarians committed a great blunder by not opposing the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA). It was wrong on our part for not objecting or raising our voices against the draconian bill”, said Mr. Nadarajah Raviraj, Tamil National Alliance MP for Jaffna, more..

No date fixed for parliamentary debate on ISGA

July 20 (TN) No date has been fixed for the proposed three day debate on the Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA) proposal of the LTTE during the fourth session of the parliament which is scheduled to begin Tuesday amid confusion and controversy as the UPFA government is still struggling to secure parliamentary majority, more..

HRC attends problems of Thenmaradchchi fishermen

July 20 (TN) The Jaffna regional office of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka Monday invited the Jaffna area commander of the Sri Lanka Army Major General Susil Chandrapala for a discussion on the problems confronted by fishermen of Kohilakandy in Thenamaradchchi south division in Jaffna district, more..

Men deny footbridge attack murder

July 20 (BBC) Two men have denied murdering a 24-year-old Sri Lankan man who died two weeks after being attacked on a footbridge in Ashford, Kent. Bapishankar Kathirgamanathan was attacked on a footbridge as he walked with a friend on 22 April. more..

SriLankan Air top operator of A330 aircraft

July 20 (DE) SriLankan Airlines has achieved the distinction of being chosen by Airbus Industrie as the most efficient operator of Airbus A330 aircraft among all of the world’s airlines for the years 2002 and 2003, in the Small Fleet category of less than 10. more..


July 20 (SKY) Shivnarine Chanderpaul returned to form with an unbeaten century as the West Indies' match against Sri Lanka A petered out to a draw. The West Indies opted for batting practice rather than trying to win their final match before the first Test and Chanderpail captialised. more..

Tamil rebels want development assistance before resuming talks

July 20 (Xinhua) Tamil Tiger rebels on Monday urged the World Bank to extend financial assistance to the war-ravaged north and east pending kick starting the stalled peacebid. Leader of the political wing of the LTTE S.P. Thamilselvan made the appeal during his talks with a visiting World Bank delegation. more..

Several opposition MP's cross over to the government

July 20 (LT) Sources close to the government say that several opposition MP's are due to cross over to the government today. A senior spokesman for the government said that the problem of the majority in the parliament would thus be resolved today and the government would continue with a new vision. more..

Debate over the Interim Government postponed

July 20 (LT) Party leaders have decided to postpone the debate over the Interim Government. A four day debate over the Interim Government the Wanni Tigers are demanding had been scheduled to be held from today till 23rd June. more..

Ally urged to launch anti-Karuna campaign

July 20 (Gulf) Tamil guerrillas have directed the Parliamentary group supporting them to launch a counter campaign against renegade leader V. Muralitharan alias Karuna who is set to form his own political party. more..