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Durham University will host Sri Lanka Olympic hopefuls

Sept 15 (BBC) Some of Asia's top sports stars will prepare for London 2012 in Durham and Stockton. Durham University will host Sri Lanka's athletes at its sports centres at Maiden Castle and Queen's Campus. The university has built strong links with Sri Lanka since staff helped with the tsunami relief effort in 2004. Maxwell de Silva, from Sri Lanka's Olympic Committee, described the facilities as "exceptional." The university provided manpower and more..

Child rape case suspects further remanded

Sept 15 (ST) The five suspects including an ex-Air Force officer involved in the rape of a 10 year-old girl in Thelijjawila, Matara were further remanded till Sept 28. Matara Additional Magistrate Dulani Amarasinghe ordered the remand today (14). The main suspect, a 30-year-old Air Force deserter Buddhika Nuwan Kumara and eight others were arrested in connection with the rape that occurred at Royal College at Thelijjawila in Matara on Sept 3, the final day of the A/L examination. more..

Nurses protest against recruiting Arts and Commerce stream applicants

Sept 15 (ST) The Govt Nursing Officers’ Association held a protest opposite National Hospital, Colombo today against the decision by health authorities to recruit nursing staff to hospitals in the North and East by lowering the required educational qualifications. Previously, those trained to be nurses in govt hospitals are required to have qualification in the Science stream at A/L exams but it has been lowered to those who have sat for A/L in Arts and Commerce streams. more..

Sri Lanka regulator acts on stock market manipulation

Sept 15 (Reuters) Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Wednesday said that it would take unspecified action against a broker that engaged share price manipulation, and warned seven others, after "unusual price escalation" in four shares last year. The SEC in a press release said investigations showed five brokers from three firms and two investors had engaged in trades "that could possibly be construed as trades of a manipulative nature." more..

UNESCO asks for a report on Sinharaja roadway

Sept 15 (LT) UNESCO has requested a report immediately on constructing a roadway through Sinharaja forest which is a world heritage. The UNSCO Centre in Paris has handed a letter to the Sri Lanka Embassy in France on 12th instant, which has been forwarded to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs by now asking for a detailed report on the road construction through the rainy forest at Sinharaja which is a world heritage. The relevant letter has been forwarded to the more..

Sri Lanka dismisses, ‘canard of recalling diplomats’ accused of war crimes

Sept 15 (AT) Foreign Ministry spokesman told “Asian Tribune” that there is no truth in the news report emanating from Swiss News Agency that General Jagath Dias, second most senior diplomat to Germany has been recalled. The Swiss news agency reported on Tuesday that ‘diplomatic sources had confirmed General Dias had been recalled to Sri Lanka’. When contacted a top Foreign Ministry official, he said that there is no truth in the Swiss News Agency report. more..

The propaganda wars in Srilanka

Political solution and election results in the North & East-Is the SLFP leadership JHU?

Sept 15 (LG) It is two years since a summary of the decisions of the APRC was handed over by its Chairman, Minister Tissa Vitarana to the President. The summary was not made public and the Presidential Secretariat claimed that no such summary had been handed over. However, Minister Vitarana disputed this. A year later, R. Yogarajan and Nizam Kariapper, who were members of the APRC made the decisions public. Time and again, the Govt has been saying that it is committed to a political solution to more..

Exchange rate reverberations

Sept 15 (LG) Not unusual, the regular IMF statement on the economy this week had its pluses and minuses on the country’s financial health. It however raised a few more concerns this time, essentially the need to limit intervention in the foreign exchange markets saying non-borrowed assets which includes remittances from migrant workers have declined, “reflecting foreign exchange sales by the Central Bank.” The fund said, “This policy does not seem to be in line with the current fundamentals of the economy. more..

Milinda Moragoda: The gap between promise and reality

Sept 15 (GV) Milinda Moragoda’s on-going mayoral campaign is interesting on many counts. Particularly appealing to me is that it is extremely web media savvy. The campaign’s central website,, is leagues ahead of what any candidate, at any election in Sri Lanka has produced. Aimed to elicit public feedback on a 12 point, 100 day plan for Colombo, the website is a model for how politicians can use the web to co-create policy in what is promised is an more..

Promoting Peace — International Options for Sri Lanka

Sept 15 (LG) Western states, particularly the UK and France, are currently pushing for action and intervention in Sri Lanka; however, if these states conduct themselves in the same manner as they have before, then they are only likely to alienate Sri Lanka, thereby creating another Burma in Southeast Asia. If there is to be a movement for international intervention in Sri Lankan politics, then it must be sensitive, multi-faceted and concerted. In recent times, rather than undermine the more..

Human Rights as a way of life

Sept 15 (LG) You must note, however unpalatable it may be to some, that terrorism has not been allowed to rear its ugly head since 2009, in Sri Lanka. We, like many other like-minded nations, are not willing to create nurseries for terrorists wherever they may be. The partiality of the High Commissioner has once again been manifestly demonstrated in the Council today. You would recall that in April this year, following the extraordinary public release of the Darusman Report, which was compiled purely for more..

Record crowds visiting Nagadeepa are facilitated by Navy

Sept 15 (MoD) A large number of pilgrims from every nook and corner of the country utilized the period of last school vacation in the month of August 2011 to visit one of the holiest religious places of Sri Lankan Buddhists, Nagadeepa temple situated in the Nainative island in the Northern peninsula. This holy place was visited by a staggering number of 1,95,971 pilgrims during the last month alone, and the mere enormity of the numbers caused a more..

Targeting the Commonwealth Summit in Sri Lanka

Sept 15 (TC) The moving, multimedia memorialisation in the USA of the shock and suffering caused by the terrorist attacks of 9/11, on the 10th anniversary of those horrific episodes, provide a perspective on Sri Lanka’s war. Three thousand people were killed on 9/11. The response was to invade two countries: one Afghanistan, understandably, and the other, Iraq, unnecessarily, causing enormous death and destruction. Sri Lanka lost a great many times that number and suffered for decades, not days. more..

Sri Lanka approves National Action Plan for Protection of Human Rights

Sept 15 (TC) The New National Action Plan for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights in Sri Lanka received sanction by the Cabinet of Ministers. The plan was tabled to the Cabinet by minister Mahinda Samarasinghe. The National Action Plan stemmed from the pledge made by the Govt at its Universal Periodic Review before UN Human Rights Council in 2008. This action plan was made possible with the contribution of all stake holders concerned including the state and the civil society organizations. more..

Thalruppawen Polruppawata: Rehabilitated Tamil Tiger combatants

Sept 15 (IL) Minister Dallas Alahapperuma said that inability to understand the language spoken by each other is the main reason for creating distance between different communities in Sri Lanka. It is an obstacle for peace among Sinhalese and Tamils as well. Minister Alahapperuma made these remarks when he met rehabilitated Tamil Tiger combatants at Sanath Jayasuriya Grounds in Matara, Southern Province of Sri Lanka yesterday evening. more..

Editorial: When saints get their palms oiled

Sept 15 (Island) At a time France is all out to bomb Gaddafi, the dictator on the run, out of existence purportedly to democractise Libya and enthrone good governance there, it has been alleged that the tough-talking French President Nicholas Sarkozy benefited from dirty dosh doled out by some African dictators. Jacques Chirac and Dominique de Villepin also stand accused of having received several briefcases packed with wads and wads of greenbacks to the tune of 20 million from their African counterparts. more..

Editorial: UN on a political witch hunt?

Sept 15 (DM) In a shocking yet predictable turn of events, it was reported yesterday that the Secretary General of the United Nations has forwarded the controversial Darussman report to both the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva and the UN General Assembly meeting in New York next week. A spokesman for the UN has claimed that the SG has not recommended the call for an inquiry into the allegations or findings as they call it, in the Report. ‘The Secretary General is simply sending the report. more..

'I was a below average cricketer at school'

Sept 15 (Island) It’s been an outstanding week for star batsman Kumar Sangakkara. At Pallekele, he played his part to help Sri Lanka save the second Test and then he was named as the ICC ODI Cricketer of the Year and won the ICC Peoples’ Player of the Year Award as well ahead of Indian captain M. S. Dhoni. On Friday, he will become the fifth Sri Lankan to play 100 Test Matches. The former Sri Lankan captain, looking back at the past decade more..

Not everyone is fooled by slumber-feigning

Sept 15 (DM) A few days ago approximately 500 ex-LTTE cadres spent five days visiting Colombo, Kalutara and Galle, travelling from Vavuniya by train and bus and stopping in Galle, Matara and Embilipitiya. Given that almost 70 per cent of LTTE cadres who had surrendered or had been captured have been rehabilitated and reintegrated into society with marketable skills and/or having completed courses of study, this doesn't come as a surprise. What made me mention the fact is a comment by a US citizen: more..

Thelijjawila student’s ordeal receives top attention

Sept 15 (SO) Pandemonium broke out at Telijjawila Royal College, when an eight-year-old was found bleeding in an abandoned classroom. She had been allegedly raped by an ex-serviceman who was found to be the worse for liquor. Police said the girl was unaware of what had befallen her. She was far too dazed to even respond to questions posed by police. Numerous incidents relating to women being raped have been reported during the recent past from several parts of the island. more..

'Kotte MC cannot account for Rs. 578.6 mn'

Sept 15 (Island) The 2009 financial statements of the UPFA administered Sri Jayewardenepura-Kotte Municipal Council, which was the last to be audited and submitted to parliament by the Auditor General, has revealed that Rs. 578.6 million could not be satisfactorily accounted for. UNP MP Harsha de Silva told The Island yesterday that when he had queried from the Auditor General H. A. Samaraweera about the 2009 SJK MC accounts, which were tabled in parliament in July 2011, more..

Cargills shows the way with biggest private sector investment of Rs. 500 m in Jaffna

Sept 15 (FT) Cargills (Ceylon) PLC said it will invest Rs 500 million in the development of a new shopping and entertainment complex in the heart of Jaffna town. The ground-breaking ceremony is to be held today at 9 a.m., at the project site, No. 420, Hospital Road, Jaffna under the patronage of Jaffna Mayor Yogeswari Patkunarajah and senior company officials. The contract to build the complex has been awarded to Nawaloka Constructions. The new complex, set to be completed by mid-2013, more..

Funds for paddy released to banks by Treasury

Sept 15 (Island) The funds released on Tuesday by the Treasury to the Paddy Marketing Board (PMB) has already being directed to the State banks to pay the farmers for the purchase of paddy. Chairman of the PMB K. B. Jayasinghe said that the farmers should have no fear regarding the purchase of their produce by the PMB which will honour every single payment. He said that Minister of Cooperatives and Internal Trade Johnston Fernando has issued a directive to pay the farmers without any delay more..

'Recruitment of Tamil speaking cops underway: Over 400 recruited so far'

Sept 15 (Island) Director Recruitment SP W. K. Jayalath said that on a directive of the Defence Ministry, police headquarters had recruited 335 Tamil speaking personnel in 2010. They were among 775 personnel recruited during that year. Several hundred Tamil speaking personnel would be recruited over the next several months, SP Jayalath said. According to him, fresh recruits would comprise both men and women in different categories. more..

Six migrants detained under PTA

Sept 15 (BBC) The Magistrates Court in Colombo remanded a group of migrants who were fleeing Sri Lanka. A boat carrying forty four Tamil migrants were arrested in the Eastern Seas of Kalmunei by the Sri Lankan Navy. They were handed to the police and detained under the anti terror laws. On the request of Criminal Investigation Bureau (CID), Colombo magistrate remanded six people under the prevention of terrorism act (PTA) and thirty six under the immigration and emigration laws. more..

'Ranil, Sajith have different agendas'

Sept 15 (Island) Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and UNP co-deputy leader Sajith Premadasa were working on different agendas in the run-up to the Municipal Council Elections and that could divide the party into several factions, said Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Rajitha Senaratne. He said Wickremesinghe had kept the Colombo Municipal Council under his purview and gave the other councils to co-deputy leader Karu Jayasuriya, knowing well that defeat would bring Karu into disrepute. more..

Abducted children returned to mother

Sept 15 (Island) Two children, aged three and one, who were abducted by their father from the mother’s custody, were handed back to their mother, by the father, at the Mirihana SPs office, after 10 days. The police said while the mother was given custody of the two children on a Court order an organised gang had gone and abducted the children when they were at a relative’s house. The mother of the children, Prabhani Dias, had filed action against her husband seeking a divorce and more..

'Some candidates spending Rs.1m a day'

Sept 15 (DM) Some candidates of the main political parties appear to be spending as much as one million rupees a day for their election campaign, and therefore laws and strict guidelines should be introduced to limit such activities, a leading election monitoring grop said yesterday. The People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) said the newspaper advertisements that are published on a daily basis should be costing the candidates at least one million rupees a day. more..

Court refuses notice on respondents in Writ by Ind. group

Sept 15 (Island) The Court of Appeal yesterday refused to issue notice on the respondents, the Returning Officer for Colombo, the Election Commissioner and a few others. The refusal was pertaining to the Writ Application filed by A. Muththappan Chettiar of Sea Street, Colombo 1, the leader of an Independent Group that submitted nomination papers to contest the Colombo Municipal Council election on October 8, 2011. The petitioner had challenged the rejection of the nomination papers more..

Honoring Colonel Olcott in New Jersey, USA

Udarata Menike derailed

Sept 15 (DN) Train services were disrupted following a derailment of 'Udarata Menike' train between Fort and Maradana yesterday morning, a Sri Lanka Railways spokesman said. He said the 'Udarata Menike' which left for Talawakele yesterday morning had derailed between Colombo Fort and Maradana. This resulted in all train services on the main railway line coming to a standstill. However, immediate arrangements were taken to reconnect the derailed compartments by the Sri Lanka Railways. more..

'Public assistance vital to curb accidents'

Sept 15 (DN) "Protecting law and peace is the responsibility and duty of the Police. But they cannot do that without the assistance of the public," said Western Province Senior DIG Ashoka Wijethilaka. "Now all allegations on road accidents are made against Police and drivers. But most of them are happening because of pedestrians' carelessness. Because of that making an attitudinal change is very important and it should begin from school level," he said. more..

'My visit far exceeded expectations'

Sept 15 (DM) Danny Roden, President Chevron Lubricants was in Sri Lanka from 9th -10th of Sep together with Farrukh Saeed, Vice President Lubricants Asia Pacific region to review Chevron Sri-Lanka’s operation and meet up with the key stakeholders of the business. “The first visit by the global head was a significant milestone for all which was only possible due to the peaceful operating environment prevailing in the country and consequent growth opportunities for the investors” more..

One-stop-shop dead: Country loses out on FDI

Sept 15 (Island) A leading corporate figure with extensive experience covering the public and private sectors of the country lashed out at authorities for killing the ‘one-stop-shop’ concept which was critical in attracting foreign direct investment (FDI) into the country. "The one-stop-shop for investors is dead in this country," lamented Tissa Jayaweera Immediate Pat President of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka (FCCISL) making a comment at more..

High-tension power line runs above school yard!

Sept 15 (DM) Parents expressed concern about the overhead high tension power line of 33,000 watts endangering the lives of children attending the Galewala Primary School. They pointed out that the high tension power line over the school yard had been laid in 1998 without any concern been paid for the danger it posed to school children. The parents said the then principal of the school had neglected his responsibility. A resident of the area said that on the very first day he more..

Anura Rohana shoots the best score in Bangalore open

Sept 15 Sep 14 (UNI) Anura Rohana of Sri Lanka grabbed the first round lead in the Global Green Bangalore Open 2011 after he shot the day’s best score, a four under 68, at the Karnataka Golf Association (KGA) course today. Bangladeshi Md Zamal Hossain Mollah ended the day in second place as he carded a three under 69. Anura Rohana earned his first birdie of the day off an excellent approach shot that landed within two feet of the pin on the fifth hole. more..

Bank boss's Sri Lankan ride for mines charity

Sept 15 (MM) Banking chief Paul Neilsen is gearing up for a 260-mile cycle ride across Sri Lanka to raise money for the Manchester-based Mines Advisory Group charity. Paul, a trustee of the charity, is the senior partner at Yorkshire Bank in Manchester. He plans to raise at least £3,000 in the coast-to-coast challenge across Sri Lanka next February. He will be in a team of 30 fund-raisers who aim to cover the 260 miles in a week. Their ride will take in the Kandy highlands. more..

Higher Education Ministry responds

Sept 15 (DM) The Higher Education Ministry dismissed allegations by the GMOA and assured that the medical faculties of local universities countrywide would not be hampered by legalising of the private medical university in Malabe. Higher Education Ministry consultant and former UGC Vice Chairman Rohan Rajapakse said the ministry intends to increase facilities for universities countrywide through a World Bank grant meant solely for the purpose of developing tertiary education in Sri Lanka. more..

Customs make biggest currency haul in BIA history

Sept 15 (DM) Customs made its biggest detection in the history of the BIA when a Sri Lankan was arrested having with him Rs.81.76 million foreign currency, which he had attempted to smuggle to Singapore yesterday. The Customs said the foreign currency including US dollars, sterling pounds, Australian dollars, Canadian dollars, Kuwaiti dinars, Dubai dirhams, Saudi riyals, Swiss francs and Euros. more..