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Jayalalithaa, Menon discuss fishermen issue

June 10 (Hindu) National Security Adviser Shiv Shankar Menon called on Chief Minister Jayalalithaa at her residence here on Thursday evening for a discussion prior to his visit to Sri Lanka for bilateral talks. During her discussions with the NSA, the Chief Minister raised the problems faced by Tamil Nadu fishermen as well as rehabilitation and political issues concerning Sri Lankan Tamils. Ms. Jayalalithaa expressed concern over attacks on Tamil Nadu fishermen in more..

We deal with India, not with its States, says Sri Lanka

June 10 (Hindu) Dismissing the unanimous resolution of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly that called upon the Government of India to impose economic sanctions against Sri Lanka and declare its President Mahinda Rajapaksa a war criminal, a Minister here said Sri Lanka dealt with India and not with individual States. “The negative statements made by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and the passing of, what appears to be, an anti-Sri Lankan resolution more..

Police, land powers to PCs a debatable issue - Govt.

June 10 (Island) While an Indian delegation headed by Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao was scheduled to arrive in Colombo today, the government says that two thirds of the 13th Amendment to Sri Lanka’s Constitution had been implemented. Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said that the speedy enforcement of the 13th Amendment had been affected due to the war with the LTTE. However, nearly two thirds of its provisions have already taken effect. more..

ICEU informs WFTU of brutal police attack

June 10 (Island) The Inter Company Employees’ Union (ICEU) has written to the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU), in Athens, about the police attack on a workers’ protest, which killed one employee and injured more than 300 at the Export Processing Zone (EPZ) in Katunayake. General Secretary of the ICEU Janaka Adikari said that the government had used armed police to disperse their protest against the proposed private sector pension Bill on May 30 at Katunayake. more..

CEA with private companies introduces e-waste management programme

June 10 (DM) The Central Environment Authority (CEA) has introduced a national e-waste management programme in order to ensure an electronic waste-free Sri Lanka in collaboration with 14 private companies for e-waste management, CEA Chairman Dr. Charitha Herath said yesterday. He said the National e-waste collecting programme organized by the CEA with partner organisations to mark the World Environmental Day more..

Post-war Sri Lanka emerges as sound investment destination

June 10 (AN) Saudi industrialists have a unique opportunity to take advantage of attractive investment incentives offered by post-war Sri Lanka, a top official from Colombo said. Sri Lanka’s Senior Minister Sarath Amunugama, who inaugurated a road show on “Investment Destination Sri Lanka”, said that this was the best opportunity for the Kingdom’s investors to harness the attractive opportunities available in the island nation for mutual benefits. more..

Restraining order on acceptance of resignation letters extended

June 10 (Island) The Court of Appeal extended, till July 1, the stay order, which restrained the University Authorities from accepting the letters of resignation submitted by Heads of Departments of the Ruhuna, Wayamba and Sri Jayewardenepura Universities. The stay order will restrain the Heads of Departments from keeping off official duties. The Court regularized the earlier stay order upto June 10, more..

Floods in Colombo: UDA and CEA disclaim responsibility

June 10 (DM) Filing objections to an action filed against Colombo City and other cities in the Western Province going under water during the rains, the Urban Development Authority (UDA) and the Central Environmental Authority (CEA) informed the Colombo High Court that they did not have legal authority to remove blockages that prevent the flow of rain water to the sea or to put in place a permanent system to prevent flooding due to rain. more..

‘Pension rights for military, conditional’

June 10 (DM) The government has decided to give full pension benefits to military officers retiring after 22 years of service only if they had been in service on May 19, 2009 when the war against the LTTE was concluded or served for at least five years in operational areas. Accordingly these military officers, both commissioned and non-commissioned, will be given 85 percent of their salaries as pension after retirement. more..

Sri Lankan women ‘routinely raped’ in Jordanian factory

June 10 (DM) Scores of young Sri Lankan women working in a garment factory called ‘Classic Factory’ in Jordan sewing clothing for world renowned clothing outlets have suffered routine sexual abuse and repeated rapes, and in some cases even torture, a report released by an organization called Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights said. Issuing a full detailed report, the US based organization said, more..

'Only 839 LTTE suspects are detained'

June 10 (DM) The govt has only filed charges against two LTTE members out of a total of 839 being held in three separate detention camps in Boossa, Colombo and Vavuniya, minister Dinesh Gunawardane said in Parliament. He gave this answer in response to a question by JVP MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake who disputed the govt’s figures in this case saying that some govt ministers had put the number of LTTE cadres presently being held in more..

Rs. 100 mn for plastic containers to curtail waste and loss of vegetables, fruit

June 10 (Island) The government has approved a sum of Rs. 100 million for the purchase of plastic containers to transport vegetables and fruit. Damage caused to vegetables and fruit during transportation costs Rs. 20 billion a year and to curtail the waste and financial losses, the Cabinet recently decided to assist the producers and traders by supplying them with plastic containers at reduced rates. more..

'Move to deprive some SF personnel of full pension rights'

June 10 (Island) The DNA yesterday said that a large number of military families were distressed over an attempt by the government to deprive them of full pension rights on the basis of their deployment in operational areas during the war. DNA Group Leader MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake told parliament that some members of the military would be deprived of their due pension as a result of the government imposing new conditions. more..

US Pacific Chief assures support for SL Navy

June 10 (Island) US Pacific Commander Admiral Robert F. Willard has assured Sri Lankan Navy Chief Vice Admiral Somathilake Dissanayake of continued US support in the post-war era. On the sidelines of the recently concluded Shangri-La Dialouge, the Vice Admiral Dissanayake called on Admiral Willard in Singapore. Admiral Willard served as Commander of the US Pacific Fleet from May 8, 2007 to Sept. 25, 2009 before more..

Sri Lanka tourist arrivals up 39-pct in May

June 11 (LBO) Tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka rose 39 percent to 48, in May 2011 from a year earlier, led by increases in visitors from India and East Asia, data from the tourist promotion office showed. Last year arrivals rose 46 percent after a 30-year war ended. In the five months to May arrivals are so far up 40.2 percent to 327,902 from a year earlier. In May visitors from India rose 55 percent to 16,649 driving arrivals from South Asia up 53 percent to 21,016. more..

Jayalalithaa’s tough Lanka talk worries Centre

June 11 (DC) It appears Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa’s Sri Lanka moves have rattled New Delhi. Within minutes of the AIADMK supremo getting the state Assembly to pass a resolution on Wednesday demanding that India must get the UN to launch an investigation of the Sri Lankan government for war crimes, foreign secretary Nirupama Rao booked her flight to Chennai hoping to convince her to fall in line with Delhi’s Lankan policy — which is not to push more..

Sakai City, Japan keen to linkup with Colombo

June 11 (Island) A seven-member delegation from Sakai City in Osaka Perfectore, Japan was in Sri Lanka for a few days and expressed keenness to link Colombo with Sakai City in a Sister City representation. They were in Colombo on Tuesday (7) on behalf of the Mayor of Sakai Osami Takeyama and held extensive discussions with the Special Commissioner of the Colombo Municipal Council Omar Kamil. more..

BTI spray continues

June 11 (NN) The Health Ministry will spray the BTI bacteria in Jawatte, Colombo today as the fight against the spread of dengue continues. Health Ministry officials said that apart from using BTI, several other anti-mosquito chemicals will also be used in Jawatte and Kassapa road. Both these areas have been identified to have a high level of dengue mosquito breeding grounds and the Health Minister will be personally present at the location today during the program. more..

Fish deaths mystery

June 11 (NN) Mystery surrounds the death of hundreds of fish in the Siyambalangamuwa tank in Galgamuwa, residents in the area said. Several varieties of fish were found floating in the tank over the past few days and the highest number was found today. Residents said that they had informed officials of the District Secretariat in the area regarding the mysterious deaths but so far no one has come to inspect it. Meanwhile people have also been seen collecting the dead fish which more..

No intrusion of Chinese and SL navies into Indian waters: CG

June 11 (PTI) The Indian Coast Guard today claimed there was no "intrusion" of Chinese and Sri Lankan navies into Indian territorial waters due to round the clock patrolling by ICG ships and patrol vessels. "There is no intrusion of Chinese or Sri Lankan navies into Indian waters. ICG is conducting round-the-clock patrolling along Indian waters and maintaining a vigil. ICG ships and helicopters are on routine surveillance," more..

10 new DIGs appointed

June 11 (NN) The Public Service Commission (PSC) today announced the appointment of 10 new Deputy Inspector General’s Of Police (DIG) with effect from 13th June. Meanwhile the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence has been directed by the PSC to publish notice calling for applications for the appointment for the rank of DIG for the existing and identified number of vacancies, along with the award of the appointments made today. According to the PSC the appointments today have been made in order of merit. more..

Anura, Rajiva testify in the ‘white flag case

June 11 (NN) JVP MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake and government MP Rajiva Wijesinghe testified in Court today in the ‘white flag case, involving former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka. The two MPs were among those asked to testify in the case by the court. The ‘white flag’ case involves alleged comments made by Fonseka to The Sunday Leader that unarmed LTTE cadres were killed by the military during the war when they surrendered with white flags. more..

India, Sri Lanka passenger ferry service to start from Jun 13

June 11 (PTI) The much awaited passenger ferry service between India and Sri Lanka will be flagged off by Union Shipping Minister G K Vasan on June 13 at Tuticorin. The ship -- "Scotia Prince" would be operated twice a week to Colombo from Tuticorin by Flemingo Liners, a company statement said here today. Flemingo Liners is a ferry passenger and cargo service company promoted by Flemingo Duty Free Shop. more..

UK to deport Sri Lankan illegal migrants

June 11 (HNS) With the increase in number of illegal immigrants entering the United Kingdom, officials from the British Border Agency has taken steps to deport nearly 300 Sri Lankan Asylum seekers. Haveeru learns that the majority of the Sri Lankans were Tamils who had migrated to Britain during Sri Lanka’s concluded civil war between government forces and Tamil Tiger rebels. It has come to light that officials from the British Border Agency had been more..

Garments are major Sri Lankan exports to UK

June 11 (F2F) John Rankin, British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka and the Maldives, visited the operations of two UK-based garment companies in Sri Lanka – Coats Thread and Quantum Clothing. The High Commissioner visited the factories of the two companies in Horana town, in order to get an insight into customer-supplier cooperation between the two companies. In 2009, garment sector accounted for a larger part of the over US$ 1 billion Sri Lankan exports to the UK. more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 10.06.2011

UK visa applicant arrested for fraud

June 11 (AD) A UK visa applicant was arrested today for obtaining a passport in a false identity, the UK Border Agency (UKBA) stated. The Sri Lankan applicant had applied for a settlement visa to join her husband in the UK. The UK Border Agency’s checks established that the applicant had previously held a passport in a different identity. The UK Border Agency had informed the Sri Lankan police which led to the arrest of the applicant, a news release by the British High Commission read. more..

Change in UK visa

June 11 (NN) The UK government announced that under proposals, the migrants coming to the UK to work on temporary visas will no longer be table to apply for settlement, the British Embassy in Colombo said today. Launching a public consultation on reforms to the employment routes leading to settlement, Immigration Minister Damian Green set out proposals to classify visas as either ‘temporary’ or ‘permanent’ and introduce stricter criteria for those who want to stay in the UK. more..

'Galle Face land sale corrupt'

June 11 (BBC) The UNP has accused the govt of corruption and not following proper procedure in selling a prime land in Galle Face, Colombo. The UNP said while the deputy minister says the land was leased out for 99 years to Hong Kong based hotel chain Shangri La, the minister has told parliament that the land was sold to foreign firms. “Minister Basil Rajapaksa on 09 March told the parliament that the land was sold, for the first time in Sri Lanka, for the full price,” more..

Pakistan talks Kashmir, thanks Lanka for help in 1971 war

June 11 (HT) On a day India's top bureaucrats including the foreign secretary and national security advisor reached Colombo for a series of crucial bilateral meetings, Pakistan thanked Sri Lanka for all the help it provided Islamabad during the 1971 war against India. Further, Pakistan made it clear that the resolving the dispute over Kashmir was essential for peace in the region. In her speech addressed to a Lanka-Pakistan business council in Colombo on Friday, more..

Indo-Lanka talks held

June 11 (NN) The visiting high level Indian delegation had talks with External Affairs Minister G.L Peiris and Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa in Colombo today. The talks with Minister Peiris this evening lasted for over thirty minutes and focused on a range of issues. The Indian delegation led by National Security Advisor Shivashankar Menon also met Secretary Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa and President’s Secretary Lalith Weeratunga at a separate meeting. more..

Sri Lanka investments could rise with transparency: IMF

June 11 (LBO) Sri Lanka may see a more investments, if perceptions about transparency and more clarity on the role of the state in the economy, an IMF mission said. "Increased transparency and improved governance could also bolster market confidence and lead to higher investment," an IMF mission said in a statement after a fact finding mission to Colombo. "However there is a perception that the govt is sending some potentially conflicting signal about more..

Public Administration, Truth & Sovereignty of Sri Lanka

June 11 (LG) I write in response to the article ‘Administrative bungling costs lives’ by Mr. Milinda Rajasekera. Mr. Rajasekera concludes by stating ‘It was unfortunate that the govt waited until the Katunayake tragic events occurred to realize the shortcomings that sullied the implementation of a pious intention. The govt should now practice what it preaches about getting all political parties and sections of people involved in formulating policies and implementing them.’ more..

Fallout from the Indian State Elections

June 11 (LG) The immediate thought is that the Jayalalitha factor will have serious implications for Sri Lanka in the coming period, but true as this is, one should not overlook two other matters which though more gradual will also deeply impact social and political evolution in the Island. I refer to the debacle of the communist led left alliance in West Bengal and the good showing of leaders, of whatever party, with a reputation for moral and financial rectitude. more..

Kumbhabhishekam of Karainagar Shivam Temple Held

June 11 (Cimic) Thousands of Hindus paid their homage to Lord Shiva on Monday (06) attending the Kumbhabhishekam of the old Shivam temple at Karainagar. This year Kumbhabhishekam was held as renovations are being completed after 14 years. Karainagar Shivam temple is dedicated to three deities, Lord Shiva, Patthini and Aiyanar, and festivals are held in May, August and December for each deity. Many Hindu priests had arrived from India to conduct the Pooja. more..

The Killing Fields

June 11 (LG) Commenting on Channel 4's decision to air "the Killing Fields", an hour long documentary containing "horrific" new footage of the perpetration of war crimes in Sri Lanka, Fred Carver, Camapign Director of the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice said: "Whilst the footage may be upsetting, the reality is more upsetting still. Tens of thousands of Sri Lankan civilians were killed in the last few months of the war. As the UN Panel of Experts report shows many of more..

LTTE was defeated for Democratic Institutions to flourish, not to be replaced by clones

June 11 (LG) That was Niccolo Machiavelli, famous or infamous for his cynical treatise on political power relationships. But he was a clever analyst of political affairs and his comparison of the affairs of the state to the diagnosis and cure of tuberculosis could not have been truer. Our political leaders failed to understand and resolve the ethnic conflict at the early stages. It led to the thirty year war. The state won the war but now, still failing to diagnose more..

'No abuse of emergency regulations'

June 11 (DM) Chairman of the Human Rights Commission (HRC) of Sri Lanka Justice Priyantha Perera spoke to the Daily Mirror on the prevailing Human Rights situation in the country, the relaxing of Emergency regulations and the erosion of independence of the judiciary. Q: In the past we have seen that although a number of recommendations have been made by the HRC not all of these have been implemented. Under your tenure what changes do you more..

Key Lankan Missions must be led by Competent Professionals

June 11 (DM) Few days ago there was an article in the Daily Mirror saying that our UK mission since the Late Foreign Minister Anura Bandaranaike’s days had done very little to protect the image of the President and the country. The writer had appealed to the President to appoint a competent head and Individuals with no vested interests to lead that revival in the UK. Members of the Foreign Service play a crucial role in making that kind of lucrative international connections/ more..

Face it; (Terrorism) Head on

June 11 (DM) Sri Lanka became the first nation to eradicate terrorism in the 21st century on May 18th, 2009. In the post war period the Security Forces, especially the Army initiated programmes and courses to share its war experience with other counterparts. The first international seminar organized by the island, ‘Defeating Terrorism, Sri Lanka Experience,’ was a success as it enabled regional and western counterparts to gather the experience in combating terrorist groups head on by more..