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|More Headline News|
Civilians `deliberately targeted`
Friday, 30 November 2007 - 8:17 PM SL Time
International truce monitors in Sri Lanka has expressed serious concern as 49 civilians were killed within four days.Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 109 )
An international rights watchdog, meanwhile, has appealed to both parties to cease attacks on civilians.
The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) says it is `alarmed` about the escalating violence in the island nation.
The Tamil Tigers are accused of killing 19 civilians and injuring 36 others in a parcel bomb attack in a Colombo suburb, Nugegoda on Wednesday.
A suspected LTTE suicide bomber targeted Welfare Minister Douglas Devananda on the same day killing a civilian and injuring two others.
Prabhakaran`s main occupation is killing people - Douglas
Friday, 30 November 2007 - 6:16 AM SL Time
LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran`s annual speech on the so-called heroes` day was mainly meant to talk of the number of people killed. He was a person who did not want to find a peaceful solution to the problems of the Tamil people. From 1987 he had been using deception to escape the challenge of arriving at a political solution as he was like an eel who always daubed himself with oil to slip out of any difficult situation, Minister of Social Services and Social Welfare, Douglas Devananda who escaped yet another assassination attempt by the LTTE on Wednesday, said in Parliament yesterday (29).Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 342 )
`Prabhakaran`s main occupation is murdering people and he had no love for anyone whether they were Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim or Indian. But I am not afraid of Prabhakaran nor can he stop my politics,` Devananda said.
Security tightened in Sri Lankan capital
Thursday, 29 November 2007 - 7:43 PM SL Time
All vehicles are banned from entering the World Trade Center at Fort until further notice, following heightened security in the city according to police sources.Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 214 )
Sri Lankan forces killed seven ethnic Tamil rebels in new fighting Thursday as the government closed schools in Colombo and security forces scoured neighborhoods around the capital in the wake of two deadly bomb attacks.
The blasts Wednesday, blamed on the Tamil Tigers, killed a total of 18 people and sent a wave of fear throughout the country`s main city that the rebels had changed their tactics and were now targeting civilians.
The worst explosion tore through the entrance of a department store in a Colombo suburb during the evening rush hour, while an earlier suicide bombing targeted a Cabinet minister in his offices in the capital.
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|Security Security Forum|
Devananda Thanks Security, Sorry Fo..
Saturday, 1 December 2007 - 4:29 AM SL Time
Social Welfare Minister and EPDP leader Douglas Devananda yesterday said he was thankful to his security contingent, which regularly advised him on measures to be adopted to avoid danger, but was sorry innocent civilians who died in Wednesday`s LTTE attempt on his life.
Commenting on the failed ninth attempt to assassinate him, Devananda said he suspected that there could have been another suicide cadre in the vicinity to blast off in case he had come out of the office on hearing the commotion after the first blast. `These aspects were discussed with me whenever I met my security staff for discussions`, Devananda said.
He said the address found on the national identity card of the woman suicide bomber was of that in an LTTE controlled area, thus the Police could not make any breakthrough.
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Ltte`s True Nature Revealed - Presi..
Friday, 30 November 2007 - 8:41 AM SL Time
President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday unequivocally condemned Wednesday`s twin LTTE bombings in Narahenpita and Nugegoda.
`The suicide killer attack targeting the Minister of Social Services and Social Welfare Douglas Devananda and the attack at the Nugegoda junction clearly targeting innocent civilians, calls for the greater attention of the international community to these attacks that demonstrate the true nature and unchanging ways of terrorists and terrorism,` President Rajapaksa said in a statement.
The President conveyed his deepest sympathies to the families of the persons who were killed in the two bomb attacks carried out in Colombo by LTTE terrorists targeting innocent civilians and wished a speedy recovery to those injured.
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Gbv Forum Keeps Mum On Ltte Women B..
Friday, 30 November 2007 - 8:40 AM SL Time
Tuesday`s suicide attack on EPDP leader and Minister Douglas Devananda, by a woman suicide cadre, coincided with the highly publicized UN Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.
A 16-day programme to urge protection for women got underway last Sunday with Ena Singh, chairperson of Gender-Based Violence Forum (GBV), calling for support for an international campaign to eliminate violence against women.
The GBV launched a major media campaign titled `Men too, can make a difference. Say NO to Violence Against Women,` at the BMICH
Unfortunately, the group which includes UNFPA, Oxfam, Care, CIDA, UNHCR, UNICEF, WHO, ILO, UNDP and National Peace Council among 20 organisations, have turned a blind eye to the deployment of women suicide cadres, in some instances to target women as in the case of President Chandrika Kumaratunga, security sources said.
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|Politics Political News Forum|
Prabakaran could be behind Tamilselvan`s death: TN Cong. leader
Saturday, 1 December 2007 - 4:24 AM SL Time
Senior Congress leader in Tamil Nadu and Former Union Minister S. R. Balasubramaniam yesterday had said LTTE leader Velupillai Prabakaran could be responsible for the recent killing of his political wing leader S. P. Tamilselvan, The Hindu reported yesterday.
Thamilselvan was killed in an Air Force raid on an LTTE hideout in Kilinochchi on November 2.
The Hindu story filed from Chennai said: `Former Union Minister S. R. Balasubramaniam told a press conference here that Tamilselvan was provided security by Prabakaran on par with the LTTE chief himself.
`The slain leader`s movements were kept secret. Under such a circumstance, how could Sri Lankan military know about Tamilselvan`s arrival at a particular spot,` he asked.
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Bandula has changed after joining Rajapaksa govt. - Ravi
Friday, 30 November 2007 - 8:43 AM SL Time
The Committee Stage budget debate on the Ministries of Trade, Marketing, Cooperatives and Consumer Services and Export Development and International Trade was held in Parliament yesterday (28).
Opening the debate for the Opposition, Colombo District UNP member Ravi Karunanayake said Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardhana who had contributed much to the debates and governance when he was a member of the UNP, had now changed his policies by joining the Mahinda Rajapaksa Government. He was now making a futile attempt to find reasons for the government`s inability to bring down the cost of living and provide relief to the people. The price of goods had risen beyond the reach of the common man, but the budget had failed to make any proposal to provide relief to the people.
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Ban Ki-moon condemns suicide attacks in Sri Lanka
Thursday, 29 November 2007 - 6:28 AM SL Time
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has voiced outrage at today`s twin suicide attacks in the Sri Lankan capital, which have killed or wounded dozens of people, and yesterday`s aerial assault on a United Nations aid office in the far north of the troubled country.
In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban condemned the attacks in Colombo, which occurred outside the Ministry of Social Services building and in the Nugegoda district, and offered his condolences to the families and friends of the victims.
Media reports state that at least 16 people were killed in the Nugegoda blast and 37 others were injured, while one person was killed and two others hurt in the earlier bombing at the ministry building.
The statement from Mr. Ban`s spokesperson noted that he was also concerned about yesterday`s aerial attack in the town of Kilinochchi in which the office of the UN World Food Programme (WFP) was damaged.
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|Business / Economy News Business News Forum|
Reporters Without Borders says air strike on rebel radio station is `war crime`
Thursday, 29 November 2007 - 6:30 AM SL Time
A Sri Lanka military air strike yesterday on the Voice of Tigers, the radio station of the Tamil Tiger rebels in the north of the country, was a `war crime,` Reporters Without Borders said. Three of the station`s staff, who had not been given any warning, and six other civilians were killed in the bombardment by air force jets.
`Voice of Tigers is a propaganda radio operated by the LTTE rebels, but the rules of war are clear - military bombardment and bombing must be limited to strictly military targets,` the press freedom organisation said. `The government in Colombo uses the Geneva Conventions to condemn LTTE crimes but forgets the conventions when it bombs what is a civilian installation and therefore protected by the conventions.`
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Iran pledges US $ 1,500 mn in aid
Thursday, 29 November 2007 - 6:19 AM SL Time
Iran has pledged US $ 1,500 million in aid to Sri Lanka for various development projects, including an oil refinery, highways and the Uma Oya project.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who was on an official visit to Iran, met Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and at the end of his visit, on Tuesday evening, both leaders issued a joint statement.
The agreements on bilateral issues were signed on Tuesday evening at the Iranian Presidential Palace.
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Sri Lanka to get more Japanese development aid
Tuesday, 27 November 2007 - 8:09 AM SL Time
Moving an adjournment motion in Parliament yesterday, UNP Colombo District member Ravi Karunanayake said the Sunday Leader newspaper printing press had been set on fire by some hooligans but the government which professed the freedom of press has not been able to catch the culprits though five days had elapsed since the incident.
`The freedom of the press is being suppressed by the government and newspapers and journalists are under threat. The government media was only scorning at the Opposition but there was no freedom for journalists or media. It was strange how the press, which was located between the airport and a security force camp, in a high security zone, was entered by the thugs who set it on fire without the police or the forces being able to prevent it. The country was losing its reputation at home and abroad and the government should say why the Sunday Leader had been the victim of such attacks in the past as well as threats against the newspaper and its journalists,` Karunanayake said.
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|Editorial News Editorial News Forum|
If President Rajapaksa is not a hawk ?
Saturday, 1 December 2007 - 4:30 AM SL Time
President Mahinda Rajapaksa is not the darling of some members of the international community. In their eyes, he is a hawk believing in a military solution to the conflict. They seem to consider him a bigger impediment to the peace process than Prabhakaran. Hence, their efforts to give him a bad name and oust his government! One foreign envoy is alleged to have gone to the extent of helping President Rajapaksa`s rivals to engineer defections from the government ranks.
Since the conflict manifested itself in the present form, the country has had five presidents whereas the LTTE has had only a single leader who sticks to his goal of militarily carving out a separate state. So, whether the changing of any more heads of state is going to help evolve a solution is the question. Why is it that the international community doesn`t consider Prabhakaran as an obstacle on the path to peace?
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The Big Tiger lets the cat out of the bag
Thursday, 29 November 2007 - 6:23 AM SL Time
The Tiger chief has spoken. Unlike his previous speeches full of sabre-rattling, threats, warnings and vivisection, Tuesday`s one was not a roar but a whine punctuated by feeble growls here and there. Overall, it was a passionate entreaty to the international community begging for its help vis-à-vis the increasing alienation of the LTTE internationally.
The not-so-eagerly-awaited speech begins with a lament. Prabhakaran is sad that the `Sinhala nation` is lagging behind other nations in Asia in this `Asian century`. Many countries in the region, he says, have made vast strides in various fields and are researching into the space, the moon and the atom. The reason why the Sinhala nation cannot keep pace with the others, according to him, is that it is trying to destroy the Tamil nation. Then he sheds a few tears for the island which, he says, `continues to soak in blood`. Not a bad start but he is being a bit too maudlin!
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Why `Bellboys` got cold feet in South
Tuesday, 27 November 2007 - 8:10 AM SL Time
The speed at which events are unfolding on the political front is amazing. We keep moving from issue to issue as fast as parliamentarians shift allegiance. Even the so-called seasoned political commentators on the ball may find it difficult to juggle with all the issues as and when they crop up without dropping one or two. It is natural that the recent Southern Provincial Council (SPC) budget vote came to pass without a stir. That, we believe, is so important as to merit a comment albeit with a slight delay.
The UNP and the JVP together have 33 seats in that council while the ruling SLFP-led coalition has only 22. Earlier on, the JVP had faulted the UNP for having sided with the ruling party in the Western Provincial Council, while campaigning at the national level to topple the government. The JVP accused the UNP of duplicity. The SPC budget happened after the vote on the second reading of the Budget 2008 in Parliament and one may have thought the UNP and the JVP would make use of that opportunity to avenge their defeat in Parliament. So, speculation was rife that the combined Opposition would resort to a show of strength and topple the SPC administration. But, that was not to be. They walked out. Why?
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|Sports News Sports News Forum|
Old enemies meet at famous fortress
Saturday, 1 December 2007 - 4:31 AM SL Time
Whenever England and Sri Lanka played cricket here at the Asgiriya International Cricket Stadium, it has looked more of a boxing bout than a cricket match. In previous instances there have been heated exchanges between players, the most famous one being a rookie Kumar Sangakkara taking former captain Michael Atherton head on. In the same match in 2001 an angry Sri Lankan captain - Sanath Jayasuriya - threw his helmet and gloves on his way to the pavilion after being given out off a bump ball.
During that Test some players spent more time at the Match Referees` room than they did in the middle and things didn`t change three years later when England toured again.
This time Nasser Hussain angered the whole nation after branding Sri Lanka`s most famous cricketing son Muttiah Muralitharan, `a f__ing cheat and a f_king chucker`
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Murali threat looms over England
Friday, 30 November 2007 - 8:49 AM SL Time
Michael Vaughan`s England face one of world cricket`s most unenviable tasks -- tackling Muttiah Muralitharan on home soil -- when they begin a Test series in Sri Lanka on Saturday.
The prolific off-spinner, five wickets away from surpassing retired Australian Shane Warne`s world mark of 708, has ensured that Sri Lanka are a formidable, almost unbeatable, squad in their own backyard.
The hosts have won 15 of the last 25 Tests on their spin-friendly pitches, nine of them by big innings margins, and lost just four matches.
Observers say Sri Lanka`s home advantage is just as real against England who, in the words of noted cricket writer Peter Roebuck, `find Murali harder to read than a Bulgarian novel.`
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How England can avoid falling under the spell of Murali magic
Thursday, 29 November 2007 - 6:24 AM SL Time
Sometime in the first Test that starts in Kandy on Saturday, I expect Muttiah Muralitharan to take the five wickets he needs to go past my world record of 708 Test victims. Hopefully, England will make him work for them, but once I retired, I knew it was only a matter of time before Murali passed me. In fact, I think he will reach the magical figure of 1,000 wickets.
As I look back, I am happy I got to be top of the tree for three or four years, but of more importance to me is the way you play the game. I am very comfortable with the way I played it and what I achieved. It was so much more than I expected to do when I started out on my career.
Without doubt, Murali has been one of the best bowlers to have graced the game. Sure, he has picked up a lot of wickets against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, but he can only get out the batsmen who are put in front of him and his record against England has been impressive. They have not played him very well and shortly I am going to offer a few tips to the present England batsmen.
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