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Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Editorial: Judging judges – II

May 17 (Island) The police generally deserve the flak they get, but there are instances where, we believe, they are flayed unfairly. He that has an ill name is half hanged, as the saying goes. So, it is only natural that whenever something goes wrong on the law and order front the police find themselves at the receiving end of public criticism. They have done precious little to improve their image. When nine out of ten suspects, arrested from a copper factory, owned by one of the NTJ suicide more..

Ethnic riots: A mix-up of friend and foe

May 17 (DM) The terrorists of the National Thawheed Jama’ath cold-bloodedly killed around 300 Christians just because they were Christians. That was clear by the statement made eight days after the terrorist attack by Abu Bakr-al Baghdadi, the leader of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) which seemed to be behind the Easter Sunday massacre. Baghdadi during his first public appearance after five years last month said in a televised speech, that the suicide attacks on more..

Refugees fear for their safety

May 17 (CT) SL Govt must ensure that the more than 1,100 refugees and asylum-seekers forced from their homes by violent mobs in the aftermath of the Easter Sunday massacre are immediately provided with adequate security, food, shelter, and healthcare, Amnesty International said. Living in fear of further attacks as anti-Muslim violence rises in SL, these people are currently languishing in overcrowded community more..

Mangala’s Mistake

May 17 (CT) The script of Mangala’s Mistake is simple and straightforward. It begins with a pervasive silence of our collective complicity with an untruth. Mangala decides to pierce the conspiracy of silence with the obvious truth. It is a grave mistake. You cannot argue with the custodians of Sinhala Buddhism. You cannot question its preeminence in the Sri Lankan polity. That is their exclusive preserve. They operate on the simple principle that only the fish can study marine biology. more..

Silence and Solidarity

May 17 (GV) Whatever people may tell you, whatever clichés are spouted in novels and TV broadcasts, silence isn’t deafening. It is, in fact, painfully empty, your ears searching for even the slightest morsel of sound to register. In its vacuum comes a roar like a 747 on takeoff, before you look up to see a fruit bat shoot off from a nearby branch. A door slamming in that house down the road is a rifle crack, making you jump for a second before you realize no one lies bleeding. more..

Secularism or Barbarism

May 17 (GV) The blue, red, yellow, orange and white lights are on, as are the makeshift stalls selling lanterns. Yet few pause to see, haggle, buy. Vesak, so near chronologically, had never seemed so far away spiritually. After the Easter Sunday Massacre, fears were raised about Vesak too being turned into a bloody spectacle by the IS, working through its local adherents. As it turned out, neither IS nor its local adherents more..

Square pegs in round holes in the land of no accountability

May 17 (CT) Let’s stop calling them rioters and mobs, shall we? They are terrorists. They kill people, and loot and burn the shops and houses of ordinary people. They terrorize people. That’s terrorism. They are terrorists. The Chief of Defense Staff actually went further and publicly labelled as traitors those who rampaged through much of the Northwestern Province and parts of the Gampaha District. His reasoning is that these acts of violence are anti-national acts and amount to treason. more..

President Sirisena’s unfulfilled promises: Ignoring security

May 17 (CT) It is not surprising that security scarcely figures in Maithripala Sirisena’s manifesto. He talks about food security and energy security, which are of course both most desirable, but their promotion by govt must come after the provision of physical security, which is its first and foremost obligation. But we had obtained this, irreversibly it seemed, with the destruction in 2009 of the LTTE and the lifting of the terror that had shrouded us in darkness for a quarter of a century. more..

Wife of Kochchikade suicide bomber gives birth to baby

May 16 (PTI) The wife of a Sri Lankan suicide bomber, who blew himself up at the St Anthony's Church, delivered their first baby two weeks after the deadly Easter Sunday attacks that killed more than 250 people including the attackers, the Colombo magistrate's court has been told. Alawddin Ahmed Muath, the 22-year-old law graduate, was one of the nine suicide bombers who carried out a series of coordinated attacks more..

Video: Sinhalese terrorism has risen through violence: Rosy

May 16 (AD) Not only Islamist terrorism but Sinhalese terrorism should also not be allowed in the country, says Mayor of Colombo Rosy Senanayake. She mentioned this attending a program held at Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) premises. The Mayoress pointed out that all Muslims are not terrorists or extremists. Stating that Sinhala terrorism has risen through violence under various influences, Senanayake states that it should be firmly rejected and all should stand against it. more..

No police curfew today

May 16 (AD) Police curfew will not be imposed on any part of the country today over the prevailing peaceful situation in the country, SP Ruwan Gunasekera said. He further stated that no violent incidents have been reported in North Western Province and Gampaha police divisions as of yet. The Police do expect to impose a curfew tonight as the security forces have consolidated the security in the island through security mission and no violent incidents have been reported yet, he said. more..

Video: Extremism feeds extremism: Ali Sabry

May 16 (AD) President’s Counsel Ali Sabry says that the number of members in terrorist leader Zahran Hashim’s group grew significantly following the ethnic clashes in March last year and that this goes to show extremism feeds extremism. He said Zahran’s terrorist group had only 20-25 members in the past, but after last year’s unfortunate clashes in Digana a large number of youths had joined them and this has been more..

'New political culture need of the hour'

May 16 (CT) The Lanka Private Bus Owners Association (LPBOA) yesterday said that it would be instrumental in forming a new political culture in the country having witnessed the fear and terror the country was going through. LPBOA President, Gemunu Wijerathne lamenting that the LPBOA had backed the setting up of the present Govt observed that the current situation was a result of political instability for which President Maithripala Sirisena and Parliament were responsible. more..

Video: President returns from China

May 16 (AD) President Maithripala Sirisena returned to the island following his official visit to China to attend the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations (CDAC). President and his delegation arrived in the island early this morning. President Sirisena met with Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang and Chinese President Xi Jinping during his official visit. President also addressed the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations, which was held in Beijing on Wednesday morning. more..

Dengue peak season around the corner; take care

May 16 (Island) The annual dengue peak occurs during June and July and medical experts have warned the public to be cautious due to the prevailing rainy weather. Some 1,108 persons already infected with dengue have been detected during the first quarter of this month. The Epidemiology Unit of the Health Ministry said countrywide 15 people had died and more than 16,000 had been infected. Patients are advised to avoid medications such as more..

Mangala’s recent statements: Opposition MPs complain to IGP

May 16 (CT) A group of Opposition MPs, lodged a complaint with the IGP, requesting him to probe the recent sentiments expressed by Minister Mangala Samaraweera, as it could lead to riots in the country among different local communities. Complaint was handed over to the IGP’s office by a group of MPs led by UPFA MP Shehan Semasingha. Semasingha in his complaint has claimed that the recent comment made by Minister Samaraweera that SL was no longer a Sinhala Buddhist country, more..

Governor Salley surveys mob violence damage

May 16 (Island) During his visit to the riot torn Minuwangoda area on Wednesday, Western Province Governor, Azath Salley instructed the trustees of the vandalized town mosque to repair it immediately to continue the performance of prayers. The Governor toured the mosque and saw for himself the damage caused by the thugs who came in organized groups to attack Muslims, their properties and places of worship. He was told that the groups came from outside areas. more..

Violence is not the way to address communal concerns: Bakeer Markar

May 16 (AD) Former Minister and Attorney-at-Law Imthiaz Bakeer Markar says violence and bombings are not means to address the country’s communal concerns. He said that it is our behavior that decides the future of the country and Sri Lanka had been facing unfortunate events every 7 to 8 years. Minister of Kabir Hashim, former Minister Ferial Ashraff and Prez’s Counsel Ali Sabry also joined the event to speak on behalf of more..

762 inmates to be released on Prez Pardon

May 16 (NR) The Ministry of Justice and Prisons Reforms says 762 prison inmates will receive Presidential Pardon in lieu of Vesak Poya. 736 male and 26 female prison inmates will accordingly be released on Presidential Pardon. Ministry said the release of 762 prisoners under Presidential Pardon on one given day is the highest number in Sri Lanka’s history. Ministry noted those imprisoned for rape, child abuse, murders and possession and use of drugs will not be subject to Prez Pardon. more..

'Violence aimed at destabilising govt'

May 16 (CT) The violence that took place on 13 May, in certain areas of the country, was an attempt to destabilise the Govt, Minister Ranjith Madduma Bandara claimed. He was speaking at a Media conference held at the Temple Trees. State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene also attended the conference. “Whilst the attacks on Easter Sunday were linked with int'l terrorism, it’s clear that the violence on 13 May was done by those who wanted to take advantage of this situation and more..

SL steadily shuts down Islamist terror net while Sinhalese nationalists unleash violence

May 16 (EN) Sri Lanka is making steady progress shutting down an Islamist terror network, police said as organized Sinhalese nationalists unleashed violence on unarmed Muslims which critics warned will pave the way for extremist organizations to attract more members. Police had now found seven training centres and camps used by terror network, whose members are believed to belong to at least 3 splintered organizations more..

SLITHM to identify alternative institutions for professional training

May 16 (DN) SL Institute of Tourism and Hotel Management (SLITHM), the national premier institute for human resource development of tourism and hospitality industry in Sri Lanka is in the process of identifying alternative institutions to provide professional training to its current students after a series of bomb attacks that hit luxury hotels in Colombo last month. SLITHM which provides the manpower for the various sectors in the hospitality trade is currently facing a huge challenge more..

Suranjith Swaris elected SLIM President for 2019/2020

May 16 (FT) Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM) elected Suranjith Swaris as its 41st President for the year 2019/20, along with a new Council of Management and Executive Committee at its 49th Annual General Meeting, held on 29 March at the Galle Face Hotel. The new Council of Management and the Executive Committee, spearheaded by President Suranjith Swaris, Business & Marketing Consultant and Director of CareBelle International, took over the responsibility from more..

UNP UC Chairman calls for Ranil to step down

May 16 (FT) Weligama Urban Council Chairman Rehan Wijeratne has pledged his support to UNP Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa, demanding that the Hambantota District MP be allowed to take over as party leader and become the UNP’s candidate at the 2020 election. Wijeratne is the first head of a UNP Council to openly challenge the UNP leadership and pledge support to Premadasa, even as the UNP grapples with more..

Sri Lanka stocks rebound, ends two week fall

May 16 (EN) Sri Lanka's stocks rebounded 1% Thursday, reversing a two week fall on the back of buying interest on Ceylon Tobacco Company (CTC) and John Keells Holdings (JKH). The benchmark All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed 51.81 points higher at 5,251.79, making steady gains throughout the day to an intra-day high of 5,259.13 prior to easing minutes before trading close. The more liquid stocks on the S&P SL20 Index closed 0.55 percent or 13.33 points higher at 2,454.73. more..

Don’t let fear get in the way of Vesak: Ruwan

May 16 (DM) Acting Defence Minister Ruwan Wijewardene advised devotees to engage in religious observances this Vesak season without any fear as necessary security arrangements have been made. He gave this assurance at a media conference held during his recent tour to Minuwangoda to look into the victims whose shops and houses were attacked. He also visited the mosques that were damaged during the attack and lent a patient hearing to those aggrieved. more..

Alarm over Sri Lanka reinstating major accused of journalist murder

May 16 (AFP) An international rights group Thursday expressed alarm over the SL army's decision to reinstate an intelligence officer accused of high-profile attacks against journalists, including the assassination of a senior editor. The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said reinstating major Prabath Bulathwatte created new threats for the media in Sri Lanka, which is currently under a state of emergency more..

Judges must strive for respect and integrity: Chief Justice

May 16 (DN) New Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya PC said public confidence and respect for the judiciary are essential for an effective judicial system and ultimately for democracy, founded on the rule of law. Jayasuriya speaking at the ceremonial sitting held at the Supreme Court to welcome him as the 47th Chief Justice said a factor capable of undermining public respect and confidence is, any conduct of judges, in and out of court, demonstrating a lack of integrity. more..

Sri Lankan strife: Emerald isle is in civil discord and India has to help

May 16 (DNA) Sri Lanka, the sunny emerald isle to India’s south, is in the throes of serious civil strife. A peace loving country, which had slowly started to come out of a debilitating two-and-a-half decade conflict with Tamil extremists that claimed thousands of lives, is now up against yet another discord foisted upon it in the aftermath of the Easter Sunday bombings. On Tuesday, the government imposed a nationwide curfew for a second straight night and arrested several people after more..

යුද්ධ හමුදාවේ සුනඛයින්ගෙන් වන සේවය

Lethal politics – Mother Lanka wails

May 16 (FT) Democide is a term proposed by R.J. Rummel, in 1944, who defined it as the intentional killing of an unarmed or disarmed person by govt agents acting in their authoritative capacity and pursuant to govt policy or high command. What we are witnessing now is a bloody spike in politically-motivated violence due to lethal partisanship by the Prez of this country. It is reported that more than 200 cyclists with destructive weapons in their hands like machetes, swords and sledgehammers more..

The dormant racists rise again

May 16 (CT) The organised modus of the 13 May outbreak of violence in which mobs attacked several mosques and torched Muslim homes and shops in Chilaw and in the Kurunegala District was ample proof that it was no localised, impromptu knee-jerk response to some catalyst of the moment, but had method and planning back of it. We have had assurances from the Army Commander, Acting IGP and sundry ministers that the post-Easter Sunday carnage scenario was well under control. more..

Video: No-Confidence motion against Rishad presented to Speaker

May 16 (AD) The No-Confidence motion against Minister Rishad Bathiudeen has been handed over to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya a short while ago, stated MP Udaya Gammanpila. The PHU Leader stated that the motion has been signed by nearly 66 MPs including the MPs of the Opposition. MP Shehan Semasinghe stated that they will request the Speaker to immediately fix a date for the debate of the relevant motion. more..

EU concerned over Sri Lanka anti-Muslim attacks

May 16 (EN) The European Union has expressed concern over anti-Muslim attacks in Sri Lanka following Easter Sunday bombings and called for rule of law to be followed. "We are concerned about the recent incidents of communal violence that have occurred following the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks," The Delegation of the European Union said in a statement. "We welcome the arrests made in connection with the violence, more..

Probe underway on Rs.4mn remitted by three ISIS members

May 16 (DM) The Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) informed Colombo Additional Magistrate Thanuja Jayatunga that investigations were ongoing into the Rs.4 million remitted to Sri Lanka by three Sri Lankans allegedly involved in training with ISIS terrorists in Syria. Investigations revealed that the money had been sent by Mohamed Aruz Zuhair and the two brothers Mohamed Izak Ahamed and Zurfas Nilam more..