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City infrastructure groans under real estate boom

Sep 12 (LBO) Increasing land prices and demand for houses are pushing developers to launch taller building projects and even larger suburban housing projects. Sri Lankans living abroad and falling interest rates have helped drive property prices up. more..

LTTE takes 3 policemen into custody

Sep 12 (AT) Three police officer, one sub-inspector and two constables from the National Child Protection Authority who were trailing after a foreigner accused of child abuse into the Tiger Administration Territory, in Murunkan area, Mannar, were apprehended by the Tigers, day-before yesterday (10), according to Police. more..

Help to rebuild Sri Lanka

Sep 12 (ABC) A woman who survived the tsunami is back in Sri Lanka helping the locals rebuild. Libby Southwell used to work for luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Today she is more worried about organising swimming classes for locals than about putting on elephant polo games. A survivor of the devastating tsunamis, Libby is helping the country rebuild. more..

Submarine telecom cable to connect India, Sri Lanka

Sep 12 (Reuters) Sri Lanka Telecom and India's state-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. said on Monday they would build a $15 million undersea cable between the neighbouring countries, betting on an explosion in demand for broadband Internet services. more..

President asks media to play fair

Sep 12 (GT) President Chandrika Kumaratunga, who met the state controlled media bosses on Friday, has directed them to be fair to both presidential candidates. This comes in the backdrop of the UNP calling on Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake and President to ensure an unbiased coverage in the state-run print and electronic media. more..

Anura attacks PM-JVP deal

Sep 12 (GT) FOREIGN Minister Anura Bandaranaike has attacked the deal between Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse and the Janatha Vimukti Peramuna (JVP), sources said. There is speculation that Bandaranaike may not appear on Rajapakse’s election platform. more..

New Zealand A arrive in Sri Lanka

Sep 12 (CI) A 14-man New Zealand A squad leaves for Sri Lanka today having been guaranteed heavy security for the duration of the tour. Sri Lanka will provide armed guards and motorcycle escorts as well as hotel security for the visit. more..

Sri Lanka: India dithers, China waits

Sep 12 (AT) With India dragging its feet on a defense cooperation agreement (DCA) with Sri Lanka, Sri Lankan commentators are now calling on the government to consider other options. Some are suggesting that the government should consider entering into similar arrangements with Pakistan and China. more..

LTTE shifts from London to Paris

Sep 12 (IANS) Although France is a strong votary against international terrorism, Paris is where Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger guerrillas have their international secretariat. This was located in London for a long time. more..

Bangladesh fritter away advantage

Sep 12 (CI) Bangladesh, led from the front by Habibul Bashar who scored a fine 84, built a position of great strength on the opening day, cheering their coach and allowing them to briefly forget what has been a difficult tour on and off the field thus far. more..

Sri Lanka court delays frozen rebel aid pact ruling

Sep 12 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's Supreme Court on Monday put off a hearing expected to resolve the fate of a government pact to share $3 billion in tsunami aid with Tamil rebels, a delay expected to further strain relations between the foes. more..

Detained policemen should go through Tigers court: Sri lankan rebels

Sep 12 (Xinhua) The LTTE rebels Monday informed the cease-fire monitors that three detained policemen in their custody will have to go through the LTTE's court procedures, the local website Lankapage said. more..

SLMC To Announce Decision Next Week

Sep 12 (LM) The SLMC would announce next week its decision on whom it will support in the presidential election. Party General Secretary H.T.Hasan Ali MP told us that they are now in the process of holding deliberations with party delegates, religious leaders, academics and intellectuals on the matter. more..

Prime Minister backs down from signing election deal with buddhist party

Sep 12 (AP) Sri Lanka's prime minister will not sign an agreement with the country's influential Buddhist monks that would secure him the party's support for president in return for keeping Tamil Tiger rebels out of government, senior officials said Monday. more..

Sri Lanka's military accuses Tamil Rebels of 113 attacks in past two months

Sep 12 (AP) Sri Lanka's Defense Ministry on Monday accused the Tamil Tiger rebels of 113 attacks that killed 11 security force personnel and 20 civilians in the past two months, as the fragile government-Tiger cease-fire comes under increasing strain. more..

Scientists perfect instant tea processing

Sep 13 (AP) Scientists have developed a new technology to process instant tea. The invention is said to cut processing time by 15 hours, making it considerably less labour intensive and reducing costs. Developed by the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, West Bengal, more..

Election Commissioner holds talks with heads of armed forces, Police

Sep 13 (TN) Mr.Dayananda Dissanayake, Commissioner General of Elections Monday morning held discussions with the heads of three armed forces, Sri Lanka Army (SLA), Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) and Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) and the Inspector General of Police (IGP) regarding the security to be provided during the forthcoming presidential election more..

SLA behind group fights in Jaffna, charges Ilamparithi

Sep 13 (TN) Mr.C.Ilamparithi, Jaffna district political head of the LTTE, Monday charged that the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) and its intelligence operatives are behind the group clashes, which are on the increase in recent weeks in the Jaffna district. more..

Mangala should stick to Hilfiger; not misrepresent Giddens

Sep 13 (LBO) It was only last week that I wrote in these columns that we will soon be entertained by election time economic theories of the soon to be formed alliance between the JVP and the Honorable Prime Minister (Mahinda). more..

Sri Lankan national in spurious biscuit racket

Sep 13 (IANS) A Sri Lankan national is on the run even as two people have been arrested for selling spurious biscuits in the national and in Punjab. The arrested men have been identified as Pankaj Aggarwal, the director of the company manufacturing the spurious biscuits, and his associate Chander Mohan. more..

JHU-SLFP agreement in Kandy

Sep 13 (BBC) Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) announced that the party is signing an agreement with Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse in a ceremony on Tuesday in Kandy. A senior JHU leader told BBC Sandeshaya ( that party leader Ellawala Medhananda thero is the co-signatory to the agreement with PM Rajapakse. more..

Both candidates unsafe - Hakim

Sep 13 (BBC) The SLMC warns that both the main contenders in Sri Lanka's presidential campaign are faced with the danger of being prisoners of sinister forces. SLMC leader Rauff Hakim told the BBC Sandeshaya that while it appears that Mahinda Rajapaksa is increasingly getting controlled by Sinhala nationalist policies of the JVP and the JHU, Ranil Wickremasinghe seems to be leaning towards the Tamil Tigers. more..

Bandaranaikes join hands to undercut their own candidate: Mahinda Rajapakse

Sep 13 (AT) Anura Bandaranaike, Foreign Minister, has joined his sister, President Chandrika Kumaratunga, in undermining the presidential candidate nominated by the SLFP, Mahinda Rajapakse. He told the Daily Mirror that he has lost interest in the presidential campaign because a major damage has been done to the party with Mahinda Rajapakse joining the “extremist forces” – meaning the JVP. more..

Why S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike is turning in his grave

Sep 13 (AT) Every election begins by reviewing the past and redefining the future. This presidential election will be fought mainly on a review of the entire gamut of post-independent political experiences. If “1956” was a review of the colonial past, “2005” will be a review of the political maneuvers of the Tamil separatists more..

Ranil’s bickering will end after losing the election - JVP

Sep 13 (LT) Ranil Wickrfemasinghe’s gibberish will come to an end with his defeat at the forthcoming presidential election says the JVP. This is stated in a communiqué issued by JVP Parliamentarian for Anuradhapura district Mr. Lal Kanthe. more..

Israeli trauma experts helping Sri Lankan tsunami victims

Sep 13 (HD) A team of experts in trauma and recovery from Israel and New York are using their expertise to help Sri Lanka cope with the aftermath of the tsunami that devastated the region last December. The first team of experts landed in Sri Lanka last week and started working Monday. more..

Paffrel concerns on rebel-held areas

Sep 13 (TP) Polls monitors are raising serious concerns over the smooth functioning of voting in the country�s troubled northeast and tsunami-affected districts, some of which are controlled by Tamil rebels. more..

Men with military type uniforms arrested

Sep 13 (SLA) Four suspicious men with military-like items were arrested on Monday (12) during a search conducted by the Police and troops in the general area of VAVUNIYA town. The suspects, all of them from VAVUNIYA had olive green uniforms and T-shirts, one pouch, one Army- type uniform, forty seven copies of Tamil Tiger newspapers and several other items with them at the time the arrest was made. more..

Tamil Tiger attacks on troops & Police posts continue unabated

Sep 13 (SLA) The MANCHOLAI Police post in the general area of VALAICHCHENAI was the latest to be attacked by Tamil Tigers late in the night on Monday (12) around 11.50 p.m. Those Tamil Tiger attackers, who have opened a volley of gunshots at the Police post after hiding themselves in the dark before they fled towards the un-cleared areas of KALUWANKERNI immediately after firing. more..

‘SLMC would poll 5 lakh votes if it contested independently’ - Hakeem

Sep 13 (LM) The SLMC would poll not less than 500,000 votes if it fielded its own candidate in the presidential poll but the party would restrain because that would greatly hamper the chances of victory of the presidential candidates of the two major political parties, said party national leader Rauff Hakeem. more..

Sri Lanka beats India in ease of doing business

Sep 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka ranks above India and China as an easier place to do business in a new World Bank survey, but it trails behind other South Asian countries with its rigid labour regulations. South Asian economies in general are picking up its reform pace to help small and medium businesses, more..

President leaves for World Summit and UNGA

Sep 13 (AT) President Chandrika Kumaratunga left last night to attend the 2005 World Summit and the 60th session of the UN General Assembly at New York Headquarters of the United Nations. The World Summit with more than 170 Heads of State and Governments expected to attend and scheduled for 14 to 16 September is the largest gathering of World leaders in history. more..

LTTE front organizations in West fund LTTE war chest, says Jayantha Dhanapala

Sep 13 (AT) The international community must come down hard on front organizations (operating in western nations) of Sri Lanka’s Tamil rebel outfit LTTE which continue to fund its war chest through various disguises as charitable, cultural and even religious bodies abusing host country laws and regulations, more..

UNP goes before the Bribery Commission today

Sep 13 (AT) The UNP has decided to lodge a complaint to prevent the unlawful use of government state property by government politicians. In addition, they are also making arrangements to lodge a complaint before the National Police Commission, to prevent the transfer of OICs of police stations, as an election being declared. more..

Sri Lanka raises rates to curb inflation

Sep 13 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's central bank raised its benchmark policy rates by 25 basis points on Tuesday, the third rise this year aimed at combating inflation that is running at its highest level since February 2002. more..

Rabies law creates petty dictators

Sep 13 (ANN) The Kandy Municipality was recently out on a dog-bashing spree, with the Chief Veterinary Surgeon (CVS) of KMC sending out his dogcatchers to seize and kill every dog within sight. It was evident they had been asked to butcher the dogs in the most violent and brutal manner. more..

Govt awaiting Furuhovde

Sep 13 (PIS) The Government said yesterday there will be no further response on its side with regard to the Cease Fire Agreement (CFA) talks venue as it has already agreed to have talks at the BIA. Peace Secretariat Deputy Director General John Gunaratne said they were awaiting the facilitator's next step. more..

Child Recruitment and the ceasefire agreement

Sep 13 (PIS) The recent political killings culminating in the assassination of Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar clearly demonstrate the need to revise the Ceasefire Agreement to prevent such killings and other human rights violations in the future. more..

IOM and World Vision sign $500,000 deal to help Tsunami survivors

Sep 13 (RW) IOM and the aid agency World Vision have signed a US$500,000 agreement to improve vital water and sanitation services for Sri Lankans made homeless by the tsunami. Work has already begun in Ampara district on Sri Lanka's battered east coast ahead of the onset of annual monsoon rains, more..

Oxfam distributes boats to Sri Lankan fishermen

Sep 13 (OW) For the past eight months 45-year-old Jeevaratnam Kiruparani and her three children living in Katiraveli village in Vakarai division of Batticaloa district were dependent on the support from aid organisations to meet their daily requirements. more..

FM slams PM for inking JVP-JHU deal

Sep 13 (SAMN) Days after President Chandrika Kumaratunga launched an attack on SLFP Presidential candidate Mahinda Rajapakse, Minister Anura Bandaranaike joined the battle yesterday saying he had lost interest in the presidential campaign and the President too was equally disillusioned about the manner Mr. Rajapakse was conducting his campaign. more..

Ranil agrees to Muslim Council demands

Sep 13 (SAMN) UNP Presidential candidate Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday agreed to demands by the Muslim Council of Sri Lanka, comprising 58 of the largest and most influential Muslim Organizations in Sri Lanka. A spokesman of the Council said Wickremesinghe who studied the demands agreed to implement them if he was elected President. more..

Controversy over consulate in Shanghai

Sep 13 (SAMN) Controversy surrounds the government’s decision to open a new Sri Lankan consulate in Shanghai and appoint an inexperienced officer as the consul general, despite objections from the Sri Lankan Ambassador in Beijing. more..

JVP and JHU to counter `CBK`s anti MR campaign`

Sep 13 (LNP) The JHU and SLFP presidential candidate Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse will enter into an agreement today. It will be signed by JHU Leader Puravidya Chakravarti Ven. Ellawela Medananda Nayake Thera and Rajapakse at the auspicious time of 9.30 the Dalada Maligawa, more..

Taxmen on the warpath, want biggest ever fraud probed

Sep 13 (LNP) Employees of the Inland Revenue Department yesterday took up cudgels against the government to win four demands, one of which is that a massive fraud be probed immediately. They vowed to continue their strike until all the demands were met. more..

Special school bus service begins

Sep 13 (DN) The Pilot Project of the "Sisu Seriya" school bus service for transport of schoolchildren and teachers was inaugurated yesterday (12) in the three provinces of Western Province, North Western Province and Southern Province. more..

Divided they fall

Sep 13 (KT) President Chandrika Kumaratunga’s censure of Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse exposes the dangerous schism developing in the island nation’s politics. Kumaratunga is right in arguing that by striking a deal with Sinhala-Marxist outfit JVP, Rajapakse has violated the governing SLFP’s policies. more..

How Sri Lanka deals with its own 9/11 challenge

Sep 13 (KT) THE incidents on September 11, 2001 have, no doubt, changed the course of politics and international relations. The terrorist attacks on New York and Washington on that fateful day paved the way for the United States to assert its sole superpower status, declare a global war on terrorism more..

Bangladesh are looking down the barrel

Sep 13 (CI) Tilekratne Dilshan scored a valuable 86 and was supported by useful contributions from Thilan Samaraweera and Mahela Jayawardene as Sri Lanka declared at 370 for 9 after amassing a lead of 182 runs. In reply, Bangladesh were reduced to 36 for 3, still 146 runs adrift of avioding an innings defeat after Muttiah Muralitharan struck twice in his first and only over of the day. more..

Ruling party candidate enters pact with radical monks in Sri Lanka

Sep 13 (DPA) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse, standing as ruling party's Presidential candidate, signed an agreement Tuesday with a radical party led by Buddhist monks who insist that Tamil rebels should be disarmed before peace talks to end the country's ethnic conflict. more..