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PLA sub's Sri Lanka visit shows China power projection in Indian Ocean

Sept 25 (WCT) The Changzheng 2, a Type 091 Han-class nuclear-powered submarine, has become the first Chinese submarine to visit Sri Lanka, according to the website of the state-run Sri Lanka News on Sept. 15. The submarine arrived at the Port of Colombo one day before China's president, Xi Jinping, arrived in the country on Sept. 16. In addition to the Changzheng 2, there were two other PLA Navy warships in port. more..

Russia to sign extradition treaty with SL

Sept 25 (RIA) Russian President Vladimir Putin instructed the Ministry of Justice to sign extradition agreements with Laos and Sri Lanka, according to a statement on Russia's official website. Treaty with Laos involves the transfer of a wanted person for prosecution or execution of sentence at the request of the second state, and the agreement with Sri Lanka - the transfer of convicts to imprisonment. more..

Re-merger of the North and East

Sept 25 (SL) The re-merger of the Northern and Eastern Provinces as a single political administrative unit is the only solution to the Tamil issue, along with the right to self-determination, TNA Spokesman and MP, Suresh Premachandran, said. He said the re-merger of the North and the East had been their demand right from the beginning, and most Tamil lands in the Northern Province had been taken over by the military after the de-merger. more..

Penalizing Samurdhi officers who supported UNP, JVP

Sept 25 (CT) Legal action will be taken against Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva for allegedly instructing managers of the Divi Neguma initiative in Badulla District to gather data on Samurdhi development officers, who supported UNP and JVP, J.C. Weliamuna Convener of Lawyers Collective for Democracy (CLCD) said. Siripala had, to that effect sent letters to the Divi Neguma managers before the recent Uva PC polls. more..

UNP buoyed while UPFA gripped by political tremor

Sept 25 (DM) His security officer picked the mobile phone, and brought it to him to answer the President who was on line. Jolted out of his nap, he answered the phone. The President asked, “How is the result?” Mr. Sashindra Rajapaksa replied, “Preferential votes are to be counted at ten more centres. At other centres, it is finalised. I am leading the list.” Yet, there was a drop in votes polled by him this time. President responded saying that more..

Undernourished State Unis. no match for private Unis. in attracting academics

Sept 25 (ST) While authorities steamrolled towards the establishment of new private universities, to make Sri Lanka the ‘Education Hub of Asia’ with ‘world class education’, medical Faculties of state-run universities are receiving little attention and lacking resources. This week, the Health Ministry agreed to make state hospitals available to the medical students of a fee-levying private medical school, more..

Fate of UNP’s LC uncertain as Ranil takes over new committee

Sept 25 (Island) UNP Chairman Kabir Hashim, MP, said that Tissa Attanayake, MP, couldn’t quit the nine-member Leadership Council (LC) as long as he remained as the General Secretary of the party. One time UNP Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya heads the LC. The top UNPer said that Attanayake was among three ex-officio members included in the LC tasked with deciding on policy matters. Other ex-officio members of the LC more..

Sri Lankan Muslims vigilant against al-Qaeda

Sept 25 (KSA) Amidst fears of fresh instability across South Asia following al-Qaeda's announced attempts to revive itself, Sri Lanka will remain on high alert to ensure it will not be used by the terror group. Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said "necessary mechanisms" were in place to prevent the recurrence of terrorism activities as well as armed conflict in Sri Lanka. "Although al-Qaeda has not made any direct reference to SL, more..

India feels underappreciated in Lanka

Sept 25 (CG) India says its financial assistance to Sri Lanka is mostly underappreciated. High Commissioner of India, Y.K.Sinha, said that while India was largely responsible for reconstructing the railway link between the North and South, India’s role was hardly mentioned in the local media. He said that there is a tendency to focus on the East, a reference he seemed to be making at the attention given to China’s more..

Football: SL building for long-term success

Sept 25 (FIFA) It is rare that football takes its place in the headlines of Sri Lanka’s sporting pages. That honour is invariably the preserve of cricket in the teardrop-shaped nation located off the Indian sub-continent near the Bay of Bengal. It is an ethnically and culturally diverse country, which is in part owed to Sri Lanka’s British and Portuguese history. Football has thus long maintained a foothold, but civil conflict has hindered more..

Rise in price of rice: Who do we call?

Sept 25 (DM) In 2013, Sri Lanka earned close to US$6 million exporting 50,000 metric tonnes of rice on the back of a bumper harvest during the year producing 4.6 million metric tonnes. In March 2014 we donated a further 50,000 metric tonnes of rice to the UN World Food Programme appreciating the organisation’s support to Sri Lanka during previous less bountiful years. Paddy harvests have grown close to five per cent on an year-on-year basis over the past few years offering price stability more..

Enter the Dragon

Sept 25 (DM) In the aftermath of the Rajapaksa Govt’s worst-ever political setback at last Saturday’s elections to the Uva PC, grave questions are being raised about China’s hi-tech 3-D neocolonialism and whether Sri Lanka is in danger of becoming a satellite State of China. China’s Govt-owned companies operating under different names of subsidiaries, signed as many as 27 official agreements during last week’s 23-hour visit by China’s President Xi Jinping. more..

Military takeover: Defence Ministry responds to CBK

Sept 25 (Island) Defence Ministry alleged that an attempt was being made to discredit the military in accordance with an overall political strategy meant to undermine the govt. A senior Defence Ministry spokesperson said that some politicians had been discussing the post-war role of the military in a disparaging manner. The official was responding to recent statements attributed to former President Chandrika Kumaratunga. more..

New expat visa medical testing body set up in Saudi

Sept 25 (AN) A new body will soon be set up to conduct medical tests on all arriving expatriate workers. This will replace medical bodies authorized by Saudi missions in labor-exporting countries. Prince Abdul Aziz bin Nasser, who heads the newly accredited body, signed an agreement with the Dubai-based Perfect Health and Medical Performance International on Monday. The company will now work with medical agencies in countries abroad. The agreement was signed by more..

'Mother tongue should be the medium of instruction in teaching history'

Sept 25 (GDI) Education Minister Bandula Gunawardena said that a circular had been issued to schools instructing that History subject should be taught only in mother tongue of the students. Accordingly the students in classes above Grade Six would be taught the History in their mother languages since 2009, he said. Minister said that History subject had been swept out of the school curricula by previous regimes, but President Rajapaksa in 2006 instructed more..

Sri Lanka president uses U.N. speech to assail war crimes probe

Sept 25 (Reuters) President Mahinda Rajapaksa assailed the UNHRC on Wednesday in his address to the U.N. General Assembly, calling its probe into Sri Lanka's 26-year civil war disproportionate and politically motivated. Sri Lanka has refused to cooperate with the Human Rights Council's investigation into the deaths of some 100,000 people since it was announced in March, despite mounting international pressure to more..

Dilan shows his true colours: CaFFE

Sept 25 (CT) Minister Dilan Perera who criticized BBS for being intolerant of dissent has shown his true colours by carrying out a series of attacks on opposition party supporters after losing his seat, Hali-ela, election monitors claim. CaFFE Executive Director Keerthi Tennakoon said that Dilan Perera and his henchmen, defeated candidate Nilame Rathnayake have attacked a number of election offices of opposition parties and led the attack on a vehicle convoy of UNP's Harin Fernando more..

Dead retirees’ pensions drawn by DS officers

Sept 25 (Island) A large number of public servants in Divisional Secretariats had fraudulently drawn the pensions of dead state officials, Public Administration and Home Affairs Minister W. D. J. Seneviratne told Parliament yesterday. Responding to a question raised by UNP National List MP Anoma Gamage, the minister said that it had been found that some Divisional Secretariats had been maintaining two files for pensioners to defraud the pension payments. more..

Dammika, Ravi figure among Asian Gaming 2014 Top 50

Sept 25 (FT) Sri Lanka’s famous names in the gaming industry Dhammika Perera and Ravi Wijeratne have been included in the Asian Gaming’s magazine’s Top 50. Dhammika is named at 26 and Ravi at 48 in the seventh annual ranking of the industry’s most influential people in the gaming industry by Inside Asian Gaming magazine. Based in Macau, Inside Asian Gaming is the first and only publication devoted to more..

Docs divided over launch of new medical journal

Sept 25 (Island) The health authorities and some medical administrators launched a medical journal yesterday in Colombo in contravention of the existing medical administration Act, a group of doctors allege. Much to the surprise of those who had opposed the move, Director General Health Services Dr. Palitha Maheepala delivered the keynote address at the launch. Health Secretary Sudarma Karunaratne said that she had not joined the launch though she received an invitation. more..

Power Sri Lanka 2014 International Expo commence today

Sept 25 (DN) 12th edition of ‘Power Sri Lanka 2014 International Expo’, an international exhibition on Power Generation, Transmission, Energy and Renewable Energy will commence today at the SL Exhibition and Convention Centre (SLECC) in Colombo. The three-day event from September 25-27 is organized by the CEMS-Global - Conference and Exhibition Management Services Ltd- USA and CEMS Lanka. Concurrent Exhibitions, Renewable Energy SL 2014 Expo and Machine Expo more..

President Rajapaksa holds bilateral talks at UN Headquarters

Sept 25 (IL) President Rajapaksa, who is in New York City to attend 69th UN General Assembly which is being held in the UN Headquarters, held bilateral discussions with several state leaders on Tuesday afternoon. They included the Nepalese PM Sushil Koirala, Colombian President Juan Calderón and the Secretary General of the Commonwealth Kamalesh Sharma. President Rajapaksa and Nepali PM Sushil Koirala met more..

Japan opens doors for skilled Lankans

Sept 25 (DN) Japan's increase in the ageing population will benefit Sri Lankans who have skills with English knowledge because Japan will face an acute labour problem in the future due to the rise in its ageing pollution, which will create opportunities for us, a top economist attached to International University of Japan Prof N. S Cooray said. "With the ageing population in Japan the Japanese govt has taken a decision to attract foreigners to Japan with skills including English language. more..

Truecaller announces entry into Sri Lanka

Sept 25 (LBT) Truecaller, world's largest verified mobile phone community, announced its foray into Sri Lanka, as a strategic entrance to one of its key emerging markets. Truecaller is a Swedish company that has currently over 75 million users across the world. It is a huge opportunity for Truecaller to further extend this service to millions of users across Sri Lanka. Truecaller allows mobile environments to become smarter by allowing a user to connect with who they want, when they want. more..

Over 140,000 credit facilities to empower NE women

Sept 25 (FT) Uplifting livelihoods and household incomes in the Northern and Eastern Provinces, the Govt has extended credit facilities to 141,320 women to start suitable businesses during the past five years. Minister Sarath Amunugama said these loans were channelled through different programs conducted by the State banks, with the aim of helping recipients resettle and start normal lives. “Since 2010 Bank of Ceylon gave credit more..

Police arrest suspect over attack on journalist

Sept 25 (Island) Badulla police had arrested a suspect yesterday for assaulting a journalist last Monday around 6.30 p.m. The suspect is alleged to have been in a mob of UPFA supporters. SSP Ajith Rohana said that the suspect taken into custody by the OIC of the Badulla Police station Upali Thalagala, was Amila Chandana (32) alias Kalu Arige Putha. Journalist Kapila Kuruppu-arachchi is receiving treatment at a private hospital in Colombo for injuries he sustained in the attack. more..

A taste of Sri Lanka

Sept 25 (Hindu) I say puttu, Duminda Abeysiriwardena says pittu. I say appam he says appa. I persist with idiappam and he says idiappa. This is the Sri Lankan chef and me exchanging notes on the similarities between Malayali cuisine and the food in his country. Duminda is in town for a Sri Lankan food festival hosted by Le Meridien. For someone who ‘stumbled’ on to cooking, Duminda is besotted by food especially the traditional foods of his country. more..

Brokers ring alarm bells over land bill

Sept 25 (FT) The Colombo Stock Brokers Association has expressed serious concerns over the proposed Land Bill by the Govt, warning that if passed it will adversely impact investor confidence in the Bourse as well as the country. Reservations over and warning on the Land Bill had been communicated to Ministry of Finance and Planning Secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundera by CSBA President Dihan Dedigama on behalf of 23 members more..

Leisure golfers from 18 countries to tee off at Srilankan Golf Classic

Sept 25 (Island) Considering Srilankan Airlines’ consistent overseas promotional drive to promote leisure golf, combined with family holidays, over 100 amateur golfers from 18 nations across the globe will fly into Sri Lanka, to take part in the 15th Srilankan Airlines’ Golf Classic at the stunning Victoria Golf and Country Resort course in Digana, Kandy, from Sept. 24-28. A contingent of local and international media representing India, Asia Pacific and South East Asia will more..

Calcey Technologies moves into Trace Expert City

Sept 25 (LBT) Calcey Technologies, an innovative software product engineering firm based in San Francisco, California and Sri Lanka, moved their Colombo based Innovation Centre into the modern office premises at Trace Expert City. The move in was graced by Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Chairman UDA Nimal Perera, dignitaries from the Sri Lankan Army, UDA, and the Management of Calcey Technologies and its employees. more..

SEC approves Sri Lankans overseas investing in Ceylon Dollar Bond Fund

Sept 25 (Island) The SEC has given the approval for Sri Lankans living overseas to invest in the Ceylon Dollar Bond Fund (CDBF) thereby extending the opportunity to Sri Lankan Diaspora communities and expatriate workers domiciled abroad. CDBF rated BB- by Fitch Ratings, targets attractive yields available on Sri Lanka Dollar Bonds while giving investors easy access to cash, whenever required. more..

NCE initiative to uplift living standards of Northern rural producers

Sept 25 (Island) National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka (NCE) which is the only private sector Chamber exclusively serving exporters, has collaborated with the Local Empowerment through Economic Development (LEED) project based in the North with a view to establish business linkages with producers, suppliers, and business entities in the Northern province. LEED project is an initiative of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and is funded by Australian Aid (AUSAID). more..

Emirates to host 'Open Day' in Colombo

Sept 25 (CT) A Cabin Crew Recruitment team from Emirates, the global connector of people and places, will be in Colombo on Saturday, 4 Oct, for an invitation-only, 'Open Day' event for prospective candidates. The award-winning airline which currently employs more than 1,200 Sri Lankans including 146 cabin crew, is inviting Sri Lankan candidates to apply online on to receive an invitation to the 'Open Day.' more..

Atapattu appointed Sri Lanka head coach

Sept 25 (CI) Marvan Atapattu's appointment as Sri Lanka's first full-time local coach in 15 years has been confirmed by Sri Lanka Cricket, following a six-week vetting process, and his three-month tenure as interim coach. SLC's coach-selection committee interviewed Atapattu and one other remaining candidate on Tuesday, and then recommended Atapattu as their preferred candidate to the executive committee. more..

No sense

Sept 25 (CT) A senior economist says GDP and GDP growth forecasts were being used as political tools and made no sense to people who continue to struggle with the rising cost of living. Senior Economics Professor of the Monash University, Prof. Gamini Herath said, GDP growth or forecasts made no sense to the common man since income distribution was not properly managed by the govt. He said, in the current context, the rich were getting wealthier at the expense of the poor. more..

IMF insists on FDI

Sept 25 (CT) The IMF highlighting the high dependence on debt has urged Sri Lanka to pay more attention on attracting foreign direct investment (FDI), particularly to the export sector, which would require the creating of a business friendly environment. "Maintaining competitiveness and achieving a more sustainable external position will require a mix of continued innovation, sustained investment in infrastructure and human capital, a predictable business environment, and more..