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Aug 23 (GI) Residents look at the rubble of a home 22 August 2006 in the northeastern Sri Lankan village of Serunuwara where suspected Tamil Tiger rebels fired dozens of mortar bombs. The residents say the attack has compounded fears of more rebel attacks in the embattled region more..

Sri Lanka's Jaffna quiet

Aug 23 (Reuters) Fighting on Sri Lanka's besieged Jaffna peninsula appeared to be dying down after more than a week of open warfare there with Tamil Tiger rebels, the army said on Tuesday, but rebel mortars were fired at army camps in the east. With road links through rebel territory cut and air and sea movement sharply curtailed, shortages have been rising fast for the roughly half a million people on the army-held peninsula. more..

Sri Lanka fighting set for long haul: analysts

Aug 23 (AFP) Sri Lanka's latest fighting could drag on despite international pressure as the government and Tiger rebels seek the military upper hand before entering peace talks, officials and analysts say. The bloodiest battles in four and a half years since a truce came into effect has claimed heavy losses on both sides, but neither side appears bruised enough to limp to the negotiating table, the expert observers say. more..

Group: Catholic priest missing in northern Sri Lanka

Aug 23 (AP) A Catholic priest who witnessed the disputed deaths of 15 people in a church this month has gone missing in northern Sri Lanka, where the government is battling separatist Tamil Tiger rebels, a rights group said Wednesday. The Rev. Thiruchelvam Nihal Jim Brown, 37, disappeared after saying mass on Sunday in Allaippiddy, a predominantly Tamil village located on an island just west of the Jaffna Peninsula, more..

Jaffna journalists appeal to International Community for help

Aug 23 (TN) North Sri Lanka Journalists Association (NSLJA), in a press release, issued Tuesday, appealed to the International Community's help to stop the attacks on media persons, media workers and media institutions in Jaffna Peninsula, sources in Jaffna said. more..

Was Gopalaswami privy to Prabhakaran’s plans to assassinate Rajiv Gandhi?

Aug 23 (ISL) India is a great country and where every citizen feels proud to be Indian first. This is despite the fact her diversity is beyond comprehension. India is fast becoming a great power and one feature that appeals to the whole world is its rich culture with its spirituality and human consciousness. more..

Sri Lanka determined to win more golds

Aug 23 (ML) Sri Lanka were placed second in the medals tally at the end of the fifth day of the 10th edition of the South Asian Games which is now in progress in Colombo. It was all too familiar a tale of Indian gold conquest at the South Asian Games as their swimmers, rowers and shooters picked up a bounty of medals. more..

Cooray complains of sabotage

Aug 23 (ML) At the recent local government election, a majority of Colombo citizens voted for the Independent Group No. 3. This was as a result of a request by the United National Party. Though the government carried out a well organised propaganda campaign to confuse and demoralise the UNP voters, our people placed their trust in the party and in me. more..

MR ready for talks

Aug 23 (ML) Even as government troops continued to pound suspected LTTE targets in the north and east, President Mahinda Rajapakse on Monday was to assure the Co-Chairs to Sri Lanka’s peace process that the government was engaged in defensive action and was ready for talks. more..

Sri Lankan conflict lost in the headlines

Aug 23 (SR) A tragedy unfolding half a world away has generated few headlines in this country - but the devastation and loss is hard to ignore. For weeks a battle has been raging between Sri Lankan forces and the separatist Tamil Tigers. Reports suggest that as many as 800 rebels and security forces have been killed in fighting in Jaffna since Aug. 11, when rebels made a major push to retake the government-held but Tamil-majority peninsula. more..

A grant of 5,61,000 liters of fuel to LTTE

Aug 23 (LeN) The LTTE have retained all the bowsers that transported fuel to Jaffna and released the drivers and their assistants later. As a result the LTTE has been able to retain 17 bowsers each carrying 33 000 liters totaling 561000 liters. There is an acute shortage of fuel in the North these days, kerosene oil fetching Rs.100/- per liter and petrol Rs. 200 per liter. more..

HT Photos

Aug 23 (Reuters) A Sri Lankan child sits with his belongings at Arichal Munai in Ramanathapuram district. more..

Devananda goes to Jaffna with Tuticorin Merchants

Aug 23 (LeN) Social services and social welfare Minister Douglas Devananda using his personal contacts with the merchants of Tuticorin in South India has granted them permission to sell essential food items to Jaffna. At a media briefing held at the Parliamentary complex the Minister stated that the merchants of Tuticorin has been granted permission to bring essential food items to Jaffna to meet the food shortage there. more..

Secretary Ministry of Defence Denies Battle Tank Deal

Aug 23 (LeN) The Secretary Ministry of Defence has totally denied the news item published in 'Lanka e News' of 08.08.2006 under the caption "Rajapakses behind SLR 11000 Million Battle Tank Deal" This news item was based on a statement made by the Deputy Secretary General of the UNP Mr. Tissa Attanayake, at a news briefing. more..

LTTE dragging country towards conflict - Minister Devananda

Aug 23 (DGI) EPDP leader Minister Douglas Devananda yesterday accused the LTTE of forcibly dragging the country to another conflict situation, misleading the Tamil community in their desperate bid to draw Tamil people to their side. Tiger leader Velupillai Prabhakaran miserably failed in his efforts to capture Jaffna peninsula as the Tamil community no longer keeps faith in his words, Minister Devananda said. more..

LTTE again shows their true face – Minister Rambukwella

Aug 23 (DGI) The recent arrest of eight LTTE supporters by the United States government clearly shows the duplicity of the LTTE, Government Defense Spokesman Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told the media today. "Though the LTTE claim that they support the peace process genuinely this clearly show their real modus operandi," minister stated. more..

North is getting back to normal

Aug 23 (DGI) The government lifts the curfew in a scattered manner in Jaffna and other conflict affected areas in the North, in order to relieve the civilian lives and facilitate them to attend to their day-to-day activities. A vessel with 3800 tonnes of food, medical and many basic goods is already sailing towards the North. more..

Sufficient food stocks Jaffna bound

Aug 23 (DGI) Social Services and Cooperative Development Minister Douglas Devananda yesterday expressed optimism that the Government could despatch sufficient food stocks to the Jaffna peninsula in time before any severe food shortage could crop up there. The Minister said the Government had given permission for traders to bring food stocks directly from South India to Jaffna. more..

Doubts cast over Jaffna Vice-chancellor’s statement on University raid

Aug 23 (DGI) R Kumaravelu, Acting Vice-Chancellor of the University of Jaffna, the favoured nominee of the LTTE to take up the post of Vice-Chancellor, has issued a statement denying Lanka Army’s statement that weapons were kept hidden inside the University complex. The Peace Secretariat in Vanni and several pro-LTTE Tamil newspapers and news websites have highlighted the press statement issued under the name of the Vice-chancellor, Kumaravelu. more..

Sri Lankan clothes exports surge 30% to Europe in June

Aug 23 (LBO) Sri Lankan apparel exports to Europe grew by as much as 30 percent in June, as manufacturers made better use of tax breaks to the EU. The industry earned 1.32 billion dollars in the first half of this year, a four percent growth, though exports to top market the United States dropped marginally. more..

LTTE suspects in US include Indian

Aug 23 (IANS) Three of the eight alleged participants in a scheme to obtain arms for Sri Lanka's rebel LTTE are American citizens with five others coming from Sri Lanka, Canada and India. Arrested in the course of two sting operations orchestrated by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), all the eight have been denied bail. more..

Yahoo Photo

Aug 23 (Reuters) Indian activists from a local Tamil movement hold placards during a protest in the southern Indian city of Chennai August 20. The escalating conflict in Sri Lanka between the Buddhist Sinhala majority and the Hindu Tamil minority has prompted daily protests in the southern Indian city of Chennai more..

India deflects Tamil calls to mediate in Sri Lanka

Aug 23 (Reuters) Their black gowns flapping in the traffic, scores of Indian lawyers form a "human chain" around the red-brick court building while other protesters burn Sri Lankan flags or stage symbolic fasts. "Don't kill innocents," reads one banner held by a middle-aged woman in a lawyer's black waistcoat. "Sinhala government, racist government," she chants. more..

JVP aiding LTTE charges UNP

Aug 23 (SAMN) The UNP Tuesday accused the JVP of nurturing the LTTE and aiding them in their bid for a separate state. JVP MP Wimal Weerawansa, who is currently going around talking to the armed forces, appears to have conveniently forgotten that they killed the armed forces and their families in the name of what they termed ‘democracy’ during the ’88/89 era, UNP Deputy General Secretary Tissa Attanayake said. more..

Presidential Commission to boost Co-ops

Aug 23 (SAMN) The Cabinet has decided to implement the recommendations of the Presidential Commission on Co-operatives published in 2002. This was disclosed by Minister of Co-operatives and Co-operative Development M. Najeeb Abdul Majeed when he inaugurated the 4th Regional Co-operative Forum and 7th Regional Assembly of the International Co-operative Alliance - Asia Pacific Region, more..

Nullifying CFA, ousting Oslo not possible now: SLFP tells JVP

Aug 23 (LNP) The government yesterday told the JVP it was not possible to withdraw from the ceasefire agreement at the moment and ousting Norway from its role as peace facilitator now would lead to serious problems internationally. During a meeting to discuss the JVP`s 20-point common programme, the ruling SLFP however said the ceasefire agreement had to be amended since it believed the agreement was against the Constitution of the country, more..

Three LTTE arms agents arrested in Thailand

Aug 23 (LNP) Thai authorities have arrested three Sri Lankans who were procuring arms for the LTTE. They were arrested while trying to ship a quantity of arms and ammunition to Mullaitivu, Thai authorities have informed Sri Lanka. On a request by Sri Lanka Police, Thailand has agreed to extradite the suspects to Colombo. The three have been identified as Asirvatham Sathyapavan of Jaffna, Thevarajah Sashiharan of Nedunkerny and U. G. Gunapala. more..

Agrarian Services Act to be amended

Aug 23 (DN) The Government is to amend the Agrarian Services Act 2000 of No. 46 to provide better facilities and ensure the rights of tenant farmers. The Agriculture, Irrigation and Mahaweli Development Ministry is drafting fresh Amendments to the Act. The Amendments will be submitted for Cabinet approval shortly. more..

23-year battle with Sri Lanka forces

Aug 23 (TS) It is a civil war that has ravaged Sri Lanka, killing about 65,000 people on both sides of the battle between 1983 and 2002. According to indictment papers filed in the U.S., the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam -- known as the LTTE -- was founded in 1976 and uses a "guerrilla strategy that often includes acts of terrorism." more..

Tamils said they were going to stag party

Aug 23 (GM) When four young Canadian men jumped in a car and headed to the United States last week, they told border guards they were going to a bachelor party in Buffalo, N.Y. But their alleged plans went far beyond prenuptial mischief and involved the purchase of 10 shoulder-launched missiles and hundreds of assault rifles destined for rebels in Sri Lanka. more..

US crackdown a sweeping setback for LTTE

Aug 23 (IANS) The arrest of eight Tamil men in the US on charges of attempting to buy sophisticated weapons marks a new low for Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers, now battling the most serious military and diplomatic challenges in its three-decade history. The arrests were an outcome of cooperation between law enforcing authorities in three countries (the US, Canada and Britain) more..

ICRC to evacuate foreigners from northern Sri Lanka, as troops, rebels trade fire

Aug 23 (AP) The Red Cross said Wednesday it would send a ferry to help evacuate hundreds of foreign nationals trapped by fighting in northern Sri Lanka, as activists expressed alarm over a Catholic priest who disappeared after witnessing killings at a church. The military, meanwhile, said security forces and the Tamil Tiger rebel group traded fire on two fronts overnight, more..

Getty Images

Aug 23 (GI) A Sri Lankan army soldier stands alert outside a department store at Borella in Colombo. Police discovered a 15 kilogramme (33 pound) powerful Claymore mine in a crowded Colombo market area as the city hosted thousands of athletes for the South Asian Games, more..

Sri Lanka troops shell Tiger targets amid lull in Jaffna

Aug 23 (AFP) Sri Lankan troops fired rockets and artillery at suspected Tamil Tiger positions in the island's northeast amid a lull in fighting in the northern peninsula of Jaffna, the military said. Troops in the port town of Trincomalee used multi-barrel rocket launchers to pound positions of the LTTE at Sampur, more..

Sri Lanka atrocity tales rage but proof impossible

Aug 23 (Reuters) Dozens of schoolgirls killed by the air force, Muslims massacred by Tamil Tiger rebels, civilians targeted by both sides. There is no shortage of atrocity tales in Sri Lanka, but getting the truth is proving almost impossible. With both the government and rebels facing each other in open ground warfare for the first time since a 2002 truce, few doubt that hundreds are dead and that civilians are suffering most. more..

Civil War Returns to Sri Lanka

Aug 24 (Spiegel) Still recovering from the December 2004 tsunami, Sri Lanka is once again enmeshed in a civil war. With the world's major powers choosing to look the other way, the victims of the island's latest round of violent clashes have only international aid organizations to turn to for help. more..

India 'silence' over Sri Lanka

Aug 24 (BBC) The growing conflict in Sri Lanka is having an affect in neighbouring India which has a sizeable Tamil population. Support for Sri Lanka's Tamil minority has always existed in India, particularly in the southern state of Tamil Nadu. And allegations by the Tamil Tigers, that sixty one schoolgirls had died in a government air raid, has prompted daily protests in the state. more..

Cowardly act, says Vallipunam survivor

Aug 24 (TN) Paranthan Hindu Mahavidyalam student, Mary Arulappan Juliet, 18, a survivor of the August 14 Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) Kfir jet attack which killed 51 girls and four staff at Sencholai children's home campus in Vallipunam in Mullaithivu district, in an interview to TamilNet Tuesday, said the attack was a "cowardly act," and appealed more..

Overseas Realty opens rights issue for slice in mega Havelock City Project

Aug 24 (LBO) Overseas Realty Ceylon said Wednesday they would raise 1.25 billion rupees through a rights issue to buy up of a 60 percent stake in property developer Mireka Capital Land Private Ltd. The group – owners and managers of Sri Lanka’s twin tower world trade center, will issue 69,057,200 ordinary shares valued at par of ten rupees for 15 rupees apiece. more..

Muttur bound clergy and media men detained in Allai

Aug 24 (LeN) A group of clergymen and media personnel on their way to Muttur for an observation visit were denied entry to the area by the Army and detained them for one and a half hours near Allai army camp. The visit was organised by the Inter Religious Peace Foundation (IRPF). The group which left Colombo this morning (23) included four Buddhist monks, two Catholic priests and journalists from Sinhala and Tamil newspapers and TV artistes. more..

More than 1000 LTTE wounded in Kilinochchi hospital

Aug 24 (LeN) The people who crossed over to government controlled areas from Kilinochchi have stated the security officers, that more than 1000 LTTE cadres are warded in that hospital who sustained injuries from the attacks of the security forces. It is reported that many civilians who were warded at the Kilinochchi hospital were discharged to find room for the wounded cadres. more..

Analysis: Tamil terror bust 'shows threat'

Aug 24 (UPI) The alleged efforts by U.S. and Canada-based supporters of the Tamil Tigers to buy weapons in New York represents an alarming departure from their traditional activities, which have been restricted to raising funds and political support. more..

Dr. Subramanian Swamy welcomes offer of Indian federal model to Sri Lanka

Aug 24 (AT) The staunch anti-LTTE Dr. Subramanian Swamy has welcomed India’s offer of the devolution model based on the Sarkaria Commission to the Sri Lankan Government. An expert body in Sri Lanka is now studying various models that could be adopted. The Sarkaria Commission was appointed by Mrs.Indira Gandhi. The Sarkaria Commission defined the boundaries of the centre-state relations. more..

Yahoo Photo

Aug 24 (Reuters) Buddhist monks and a catholic priest visit a welfare camp for internally displaced Muslim people in Kantale, near the northeastern town of Trincomalee, Sri Lanka August 23, 2006. more..

Sri Lankan civilians flee to Tamil Nadu - an estimated 6500 have fled since April

Aug 24 (AT) As fighting raged in the North and East, nearly 6500 Tamils have fled to India's Tamil Nadu State since April this year.A further 210 refugees arrived in Tamil Nadu's Arisalmunai and Dhanuskodi early last week. "So far according to official statistics, 6346 Tamils have arrived in Tamil Nadu, but it is estimated that at least another 1000 refugees are unaccounted for," sources claimed. more..

Sea Tigers killed in fierce fight with Karuna group

Aug 24 (AT) Vanni Sea Tigers sent on the mission of hunting and killing the leadership of the break-away group Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal (TMVP – Karuna Group) were foiled yesterday. They came under heavy fire yesterday when they entered the area (undisclosed) under control by the TMVP. TMVP sources claimed that they routed the Sea Tigers, killing four of them and capturing one. more..

Tourist Board in a mega drive to promote Sri Lanka

Aug 24 (AT) Sri Lanka Tourist Board (SLTB) is currently looking at all available options in promoting the island nation as a tourist paradise. Taking few steps forward, SLTB will be launching Public Relations agents during the latter part of this month in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Netherlands, Italy, Japan, China, India, United Arab Emirates, and Australia. more..

Sri Lankan Government allies in collision on North East future

Aug 24 (AT) While the government's main ally, Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna has demanded that President Mahinda Rajapakse immediately de-merge the North and East, the coalition's chief Tamil constituent has called for the permanent merger of the North and East as a single province. The EPDP led by Minister Douglas Devananda has in their proposal on the ethnic conflict also emphasized the need for internal autonomy for the Muslims living in the North and East. more..

Sri Lanka's civil war exacts a mounting toll

Aug 24 (NW) The news from Sri Lanka could hardly be worse these days. Ever since guerrillas of the Tamil separatist group, the LTTE, and the Sri Lankan armed forces began fighting over an obscure irrigation canal on the island's eastern coast a month ago, the violence has kept escalating, making a mockery of the four-year-old ceasefire. more..

Be humane to refugees from Sri Lanka: PUCL

Aug 24 (Hindu) The Tamil Nadu Government should deal with the refugees from Sri Lanka who are fleeing the war there with humaneness, K.G. Kannabiran, national president of the People's Union of Civil Liberties (PUCL), told presspersons here on Wednesday. Besides providing security, it was for the State Government to provide security and resources to refugees. more..