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Minister blasts investment body

May 23 (TP) Minister of Industries, Tourism and Industrial Promotion Anura Bandaranaike on Friday blasted the management of the Board of Investment (BOI), Sri Lanka’s premier foreign investment promotion body. more..

Major backlog of criminal cases

May 23 (TP) More than 23,000 reports on narcotics, illegal firearms, illicit liquor and questioned documents are stuck in Sri Lanka’s government analyst’s department causing a major backlog of criminal cases in courts, newspapers said. more..

Fake job agencies face tough action

May 23 (TP) Karunasena Hettiarachchi, new chairman of the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE), has said the bureau would take stringent action against bogus job agencies which dupe unsuspecting job seekers by promising non-existent jobs abroad. more..

Tigers blame Sri Lanka troops for blowing up rebel in mine attack

May 23 (AFP) Tamil Tiger rebels accused government forces of involvement in a powerful explosion that killed at least one rebel. The rebel LTTE said the Thursday night attack in the district of Batticaloa "was carried out with the support of the Sri Lanka Army," according to the pro-rebel Tamilnet website. more..

New snags hold up Sri Lanka peace talks

May 23 (AFP) Sharp differences have re-emerged between the Sri Lankan government and Tamil Tiger rebels holding up an expected agreement to revive negotiations, despite international pressure, officials said. more..

India should reconsider decision to extend ban- Adaikalanathan

May 23 (TN) "We urge the Government of India to reconsider its decision to extend the ban on LTTE for another two years under the Unlawful Activities (prevention) Act," said Selvam Adaikalanathan, TNA MP for Vanni in a request sent to New Delhi, sources in Vanni said. more..

Lanka seeks credit from to subsidise fuel

May 23 (PTI) In a bid to cushion its economy from rising world oil prices, Sri Lankan government has asked for a new credit line from India so that it can subsidise fuel prices in the island nation. more..

Peace talks to resume in August: PM

May 23 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka's Norwegian-brokered peace talks between the government and the Tamil Tiger rebels are to resume in August, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse was quoted as saying by the state radio on Sunday. more..

President calls for an inquiry over SLMC Leader’s scandal

May 23 (Rupavahini) The president’s office categorically denies the various references to the president with regard to the recent exposes made in the media about the unsavory happenings in the private life of former minister Rauff Hakeem. more..

Divided Sinhala leadership poses danger to peace process- TNA

May 24 (TN) TNA expressed pessimism that it would be difficult to find a lasting political solution to the ethnic conflict through negotiations as the Sinhala political leadership is sharply divided on the question of resuming peace talks on the basis of Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA) put forward by the LTTE. more..

Illegally filled paddy fields will be taken over

May 24 (LT) All paddy fields illegally filled will be taken over by the Government says Mr.Sunil Handunneththi, Deputy Minister of Rural and Small Industries. Deputy Minister made this statement at a media briefing held at Maharagama. more..

MEP-JVP agree on path of peace process

May 24 (LT) The JVP and the MEP have agreed that the peace process of the Government should be carried out in accordance with the policy statement, “Country to the fore!” of the UPFA placed before the people. more..

Spice exporters seek cap on Pepper from Lanka

May 24 (FE) The biggest threat the spices sector faces is cheap varieties, especially pepper, flowing into the market through Saarc countries, especially Sri Lanka with whom India has a free trade agreement (FTA). more..

Unemployed graduates are to be given state sector jobs

May 24 (Rupavahini) Interviews to recruit graduates for government jobs will be conducted from tomorrow at district level. Deputy finance minister Ranjith Siyabalapitiya said that these interviews will be held till the 30th of July. more..

Top Norwegian envoy tries to restart peace talks

May 24 (AP) A top Norwegian peace negotiator will try to remove hurdles to peace talks between the Sri Lankan government and Tamil Tiger rebels during his visit to the island starting Monday. more..

Shuffling The Pack

May 24 (LBO) SriLankan Airlines is pushing to expand its portfolio through fifth freedom rights to Nepal and Bangladesh, while keeping a close tab on rising jet fuel prices, which may put a drag on its balance sheet this year. more..

Fly Away Peter…

May 24 (LBO) Colombo is unusual for a capital city in having a large number of wetlands. Around Kotte for example a number of wetlands still remain. But these natural assets are deteriorating by the day. more..

Fresh Paint

May 24 (LBO) The debt ridden Ceylon Electricity Board is dressing up its restructuring model with a less commercially oriented reform design, to keep in line with the new government’s anti-privatisation policy. more..

EPDP supporter threatened with abduction

May 24 (SLA) A woman in the general area of KODIKAMAM, JAFFNA has been threatened with abduction for her involvement with the politics of Eelam People’s Democratic Party (EPDP) on 22 May 2004. more..

Fourteen year old boy abducted

May 24 (SLA) Information received confirmed that an unidentified group on a white van had allegedly abducted a fourteen-year old boy from the general area of KOTTADI on 19 May 2004. Name & particulars of the abductee are withheld for obvious security reasons and questions of human rights.

LTTE man with T-56 weapon arrested

May 24 (SLA) An LTTE cadre in possession of a T-56 weapon and two magazines was arrested by the BATTICALOA Police on 23 May 2004 around 2.00 p.m. while he was at his residence situated in the general area of KOOLAVADI colony, BATTICALOA. more..

Two suspicious teenagers taken in for questioning

May 24 (SLA) Two Tamil teenagers from VALAICHCHENAI, found loitering in the general area of the Sri Lanka Navy Camp Dakshina, GALLE on 23 May 2004 around 7.00 p.m. without any Identity Cards or substantive reasons, were taken in for questioning by naval troops on suspicion. more..

Sri Lanka says no to Pakistan tour

May 24 (Jang) The Sri Lanka cricket board has expressed its inability to send its team to Pakistan later in October this year to participate in a proposed One-day International series here. more..

Australia,UK lawyers to defend Muralitharan

May 24 (AP) Sri Lanka's prime minister is hiring Australian and British lawyers to help defend star bowler Muthiah Muralitharan, who has been banned from bowling a special delivery that the International Cricket Council says is illegal, more..

Sri Lankan charity born of tourism executive's compassion

May 24 (PBP) The Holiday Inn Oceanside that Bill Pullen manages in Jensen Beach is a posh world away from the slums of Sri Lanka, where his charity helps poor inner-city children. In 1990, Pullen first visited the island nation off the eastern tip of India for the annual meeting of SKAL International, more..

President congratulates Dr. Manmohan Singh

May 24 (PSL) President Chandrika Kumaratunga has sent a message of congratulations to Dr. Manmohan Singh on his appointment as the Prime Minister of India. “Your Excellency’s appointment is a demonstration of the trust and confidence the Congress Party and its coalition alliance have in your leadership more..

Police bare international internet child sex racket

May 24 (DN) The special police unit of the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) has bared an international racket where the services of Sri Lankan children are being sold to foreigners through the Internet. more..

Stocks up on retail buying, blue chips dip

May 24 (Reuters) Stocks inched higher on Monday, with small stocks keeping the market moving but most blue chips posting losses, brokers said. The key Colombo all-share index ended up 0.7 percent, or 9.24 points, at 1,330.92. more..

Rupee strengthens on exporter selling

May 24 (Reuters) The Sri Lankan rupee strengthened on Monday due to exporters selling dollars, but dealers said gains were crimped by import demand late in the day. The rupee closed at 98.95 against the dollar, compared to Friday's close of 99.00, after hitting an intraday low of 99.03 rupees. more..

Kadirgamar to travel to Delhi

May 24 (TP) Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar is to make another visit to India next week this time to meet leaders of the newly elected Congress-led government. It will be his second visit to India in a month. The first came amidst the height of the Indian parliamentary elections. more..

New property laws planned

May 24 (TP) New laws are to be drafted to curb the purchase of land in Sri Lanka by foreigners and to impose a heavy tax on property that has already been purchased. Piyasena Gamage, a government minister, told that the cabinet had discussed the growing number of properties being purchased by foreigners and a decision will be taken soon to introduce new laws to reduce it. more..

Two arrested for assaulting Briton

May 24 (TP) A Fijian ruggerite representing a leading Colombo sports club and doubling up as a bodyguard along with a Sri Lankan bodyguard for a millionaire Colombo businessman have been arrested and released on bail for allegedly raping a British woman holidaying in a luxury tourist resort in southern Bentota. more..

A new programme to provide solution to social problems in Colombo

May 24 (Rupavahini) This initiative has been made by the Colombo Municipal Council in collaboration with the world health organization. The “healthy Colombo” project will be implemented to transform the Colombo to a fully fledged city with clean environment. more..

JVP Slams Norway for distorting the entire Talks process

May 24 (AT) JVP slams Norway for contorting, distorting and confusing the whole process of the Talks with the Tamil rebel outfit - LTTE and the Government of Sri Lanka as Peace Talks - giving a new twist and a new dimension to the entire process. more..

20 Prabhakaran cadres killed by Col. Karuna’s forces – Divaina

May 24 (AT) In the latest battles of internecine fratricidal warfare between the Prabhakaran and Colonel Karuna Amman factions of the LTTE 22 rebels were killed and scores more were injured, Colombo’s Sinhala language daily, the Divaina reported. more..

Sri Lanka drops plan to sue ICC over Muralitharan 'doosra' ban

May 24 (AFP) Sri Lanka has abandoned plans to sue the International Cricket Council (ICC) for banning spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan's controversial 'doosra' delivery, a government spokesman said. more..

Norway envoy to visit Sri Lanka in latest peace bid

May 24 (Reuters) A Norwegian peace envoy was set to visit Sri Lanka on Monday to try and revive talks with Tamil rebels as the government grappled to resolve internal differences and soothe the island's violent east. more..

Illicit gem mining destroys lives in Sri Lanka

May 24 (OW) With the monsoons approaching in Sri Lanka, illegal gem mining is again threatening the lives of impoverished locals in the flood prone, gem-rich district of Ratnapura, where 60 people were buried by landslides induced by unchecked excavations last year. more..

Lanka appoints Army official to control Batticaloa violence

May 24 (UNI) Sri Lanka today appointed a top-ranking military official to bring under control the worsening security situation in the Eastern Batticaloa district where fighting between the LTTE rebels and loyalists belonging to rebel leader Col Karuna, is on the rise. more..

LTTE wants India to reconsider ban

May 24 (PTI) Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels today asked India to reconsider extending a ban imposed on them following the slaying of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi 13 years ago. more..

Eastern university don shot dead

May 24 (TN) Mr. Kumaravel Thambaiah, a senior lecturer in the Eastern University was shot dead by unidentified gunmen at his home in Batticaloa town around 4.30 p.m. Monday. Mr.Thambaiah, 40, the head of the economics department of the Eastern University, is from the village of Aasikulam north of Vavuniya. more..

Top Tamil academic shot dead in Batticaloa

May 24 (AP) A top Tamil academic was shot dead Monday by unidentified assailants amid escalating violence in eastern Sri Lanka, military officials said. Kumaravel Thambiah, 46 was killed in his home in Batticaloa, they said on condition of anonymity, citing a preliminary investigation. more..

Professor K.Thambaiyah shot and killed

May 24 (AT) Professor Kumaravelu Thambaiyah (40 yrs.), Dean of the Economic Faculty, Eastern University, Sri Lanka has been shot and killed this evening around 4.15 pm, at Batticaloa in the very close proximity of his residence. more..

Normal life returning to Oddusuddan

May 25 (TN) Normal life is gradually returning in the Oddusuddan region in the Mullaithivu district, an area devastated during the war that is currently under the control of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, according to Tamil press reports from the North. more..

Solheim to visit Colombo next week

May 25 (TN) The Norwegian special peace envoy to Sri Lanka, Mr. Erik Solheim, is scheduled to arrive in Colombo on May 24. He is expected to hold talks with the President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, and Prime Minister, Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse, the same day regarding peace process, Colombo media sources said. more..

Unable to inquire into tiger murders -SLMM

May 25 (LT) SLMM says they are unable to continue with the inquiries into the murders of two intelligence officers of the Army committed in Batticaloa last week. Wasanthe Kolambage and Lalith Dissanayake were the two officers of the intelligence unit of the Army that were gunned down by the pistol gang of the tiger organization. more..

73 JVPrs to contest PC elections

May 25 (LT) The JVP will field 73 candidates under UPFA at the forthcoming Provincial Council elections. The JVP fields 10 candidates for Central Provincial Council and 2 for Uva Provincial Council from UPFA lists. These two Provincial Councils have already received nominations. more..

"No boozing in public"

May 25 (NW) Police has been advised to take strong action against groups of people consuming liquor in unauthorised public places like roadsides, parks etc. Tilak Ranaviraja, Secretary to the Ministry of Public Security, Law and Order has written to the Inspector General of Police Indra de Silva more..

JHU to organize mass protests in Sri Lanka

May 25 (NW) The Jathika Hela Urumaya yesterday vowed to organize mass protests against the revival of the peace process for what it sees as one-sided facilitation by Norway. "We will not agree to peace talks mooted by the new government because we believe this process will lead to a de-facto Tamil Eelam", more..

JVP national list MP resigns

May 25 (NW) Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) National List MP Phillip Kumarasinghe Sri Liyanage has resigned from Parliament to make way for a party stalwart to take his place, a JVP official said. His letter of resignation was handed over to Secretary General Priyani Wijesekera yesterday.