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|More Headline News|
US deselects Sri Lanka from 2008 funding
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 - 10:30 AM SL Time
The Millenium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a United States Government corporation designed to work with some of the poorest countries in the world, has voted to `deselect` Sri Lanka as a country eligible for MCC funding next year, the Daily Mirror has learnt.Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 197 )
At a December 12 meeting, the Board of Directors of the MCC deselected Sri Lanka, based on the country`s performance on 17 indicators in three areas -- ruling justly, investing in people and encouraging economic freedom -- sources said, adding that the government had been informed of the decision.
Sri Lanka`s deselection implies that it has not demonstrated commitment to policies that promote `political and economic freedom, investments in education and health care, control of corruption, and respect for civil liberties and the rule of law.Sri Lanka was eligible for MCC funding in 2007. After deselection the country will have to re-apply for the Fiscal Year of 2009 if it wishes to be selected for that year. Led by a Chief Executive Officer and overseen by a Board of Directors, MCC is responsible for the stewardship of the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA), which receives funds appropriated by the US Congress every year.
Clear titles for Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu lands before long - President
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 - 3:35 AM SL Time
President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday expressed confidence that the day residents of Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu get clear titles for their lands is not far away, hinting that the two areas will soon be liberated from the clutches of the LTTE.Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 180 )
The President also said that the East was not liberated just to hand over to it to some other party.
`We have done so to create a situation in which all the people could live without fear or suspicion,` the President added.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa made these observations yesterday at a ceremony held at the Presidential Secretariat to hand over deeds to land recipients under the islandwide `Bim Saviya` programme implemented by Lands and Land Development Ministry.
Tiger rebels claim smashing Sri Lanka army outpost
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:30 PM SL Time
COLOMBO (AFP) - Tamil Tiger rebels overran a military outpost in northern Sri Lanka on Tuesday, killing at least five government soldiers, the rebels said.Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 240 )
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) mounted the offensive at Weerapuram in the district of Vavuniya just outside their de facto mini-state, the LTTE`s Rasiah Ilanthiriyan said in a statement.
`At least five Sri Lanka armed forces men were killed and others fled...,` the statement said, adding that the guerrillas did not suffer any casualties.
There was no immediate reaction from the military, which has claimed killing at least 327 rebels since December 1. The government says only a handful of its troops have died this month.
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|Security Security Forum|
Colombo Withdraws Security, Mano Ga..
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 - 10:39 AM SL Time
Mano Ganesan, founder of Civil Monitoring Commission (CMC) and a Rights award winner from the U.S. Government, in a press release issued Wednesday said that Sri Lanka Government has withdrawn eight of the ten Security personnel, and that he fears Sri Lanka Government is creating a climate for getting him assassinated. Pointing out that the official organ of the ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), has described him `as an arms supplier to the LTTE, drug trafficker and collaborator with the under world criminals,` Ganesan said, Colombo is orchestrating attacks against him from communal elements.
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Sri Lanka summons UNICEF local chief over his visit to Kilinochchi
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:21 PM SL Time
The Sri Lanka Foreign Ministry yesterday summoned UNICEF Country Representative Philippe Duamelle to express concern over his recent visit to Kilinochchi and his meeting with LTTE leaders, without approval from the Ministry.
Foreign Secretary Dr. Palitha Kohona emphasized that the UNICEF had not followed the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs when diplomats and high ranking officials sought to visit the uncleared areas in the Northern Province, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
It also stated that the Foreign Secretary conveyed to Mr. Duamelle that non-compliance with these guidelines was unacceptable given the propensity of the LTTE to exploit such visits for propaganda purposes.
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Killing MP: Minister`s son released
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:20 PM SL Time
The judiciary in Sri Lanka has released four suspects including a son of a minister on charges of murdering a parliamentarian and a policeman.
Ratnapura magistrate and additional District Judge MMM Nihal released the suspects on the instructions of the Attorney General (AG).
Released suspects Viraj Ratnathilake, Pujitha Saman Kumara, IK Kularatne, Nimal Dayawansa and seven others were accused of killing ruling party legislator Nalanda Ellawala on or around 11 February 1997.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/sinhala/news/story/2007/12/071217_nalanda_released.shtml Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 9 )
|Politics Political News Forum|
Sri Lanka `dangerous` for media
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 - 10:45 AM SL Time
Sri Lanka is the third dangerous country in the world for the journalists, an international media watchdog said.
Geneva based Press Emblem Campaign (PEC) says seven journalists killed in the island nation as violence between the government forces and the LTTE escalated.
Only for journalists were killed and less journalists were harrassed in the previous year, a statement issued by the PEC said.
The watchdog said the press freedom has been drastically deteriorated worldwide.
`Never before has so many journalists been killed in one year, the total up to date is 110 as compared with 96 in 2006 and 68 in 2005,` it stated.
The most dangerous country for the journalists is Iraq where 50 journalists were killed within one year, according to the monitoring system.
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Wimal Weerawansa gave oxygen to a sinking Government
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:23 PM SL Time
SLFP dissident and co-convener of the SLFP (M), Mangala Samaraweera yesterday lashed out at the JVP parliamentary group leader Wimal Weerawansa, accusing the JVP of having dashed the people`s hopes of changing the Rajapaksa government.
Weerawansa had defied a JVP politburo decision and abstained at the final vote on the Government budget, Samaraweera said at a media briefing in Colombo.
Weerawansa had made that decision despite a pledge the JVP had given that it would vote against the budget, as reported in the newspapers.
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Rajapakse`s nationalistic foreign policy pays dividends.
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:30 AM SL Time
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse`s foreign policy based on an aggressive display of nationalism appears to be paying off.
In the two years Rajapakse has been in power, the government has taken on the UN and the West and has rapped multilateral bodies on the knuckles for being soft on the Tamil Tigers.
It has also demonstrated closeness to China and Pakistan regardless of how India, the only neighbour, may view it. But Colombo has been none the worse for all the boldness, even if it has smacked of adventurism and abrasiveness at times.
There has been consistent and strident international criticism of the way the regime is handling the ethnic crisis, especially the huge humanitarian problem unending fighting has triggered. But foreign governments and multilateral organisations have been reluctant to translate expressions of displeasure into corrective action.
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|Business / Economy News Business News Forum|
Save power to prevent rate hike - CEB
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 - 10:38 AM SL Time
The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) yesterday warned consumers to use power sparingly or pay more for their electricity beginning next year.
Announcing a major awareness campaign for energy conservation, CEB Chairman Udayasri Kariyawasam told the media that in the event of the CEB failing to save at least six million units (one fifth of the total daily consumption) of power, there would be no alternative but to raise electricity charges by Rs. 4.65 per unit from 2008.
Saving one unit means saving Rs. 15 with one litre of diesel being used to produce four units of electricity, the Chairman said adding that the CEB was planning to be self-sufficient without depending on Treasury subsidies to stabilise prices from 2008.
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Laws to safeguard HIV infected workers
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:33 PM SL Time
Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said the decision was made following a complaint lodged with the Labour Ministry that an HIV infected employee in a certain organisation, had been dismissed. A programme was held at the Human Resources Development Centre in Nugegoda to raise awareness on AIDS. Participating in the event the Minister said the government has taken action to secure the employment rights of the public servants.
The Minister pointed out that similarly to wiping out terrorism, health conditions of the workers had to be uplifted. AIDS day was commemorated on the 1st of December. Today they are commemorating the event with the Labour Ministry. He said discussions should be held at length on what programmes should be launched on HIV at offices and worksites. He revealed that legislation will be drafted on national initiatives that should be taken for the protection of HIV infected cases and prevention of the decease. It is unfair to dismiss any HIV infected employee. The Minister said laws will be definitely enacted next year to protect their jobs and solve their social problems. Minister Athauda Seneviratne also participated. Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 1 )
English proficiency vital for success in global world: LTTE Political Head
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:27 PM SL Time
`Eelam Tamils have excelled in military science and geo-political affairs at an International level. For our people to acquire skills and knowlege to succeed at the global level, opportunity and facilities to attain high levels of proficiency in English is critical,` said B. Nadesan, the political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in his commencement address at the English Language College (ELC) in Ki`linochchi, on Saturday. The ELC, a Tamils` Rehabilitation Organization (TRO)-funded college, was established on September 13, 2004 to produce educators to fulfill the shortage of competent of English teachers in the NorthEast. Full Story Post Reply To This Read Replies ( 24 )
|Editorial News Editorial News Forum|
Mangala`s charge: Rathu Sahodarayas as whipping boys
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 - 10:46 AM SL Time
One day, a motorist was stranded as the headlights of his car had developed a fault. It was a dark rainy night. While he was thinking of ways and means of returning home, a solution flashed upon him: He could follow another vehicle up to the town and then be guided by street lamps. He saw a car go past him and put his plan into action. Thus, he began his homeward journey thanks to someone else`s light, thinking that everything was hunky dory. But after a while, all at once the car ahead of him came to a screeching halt?something least anticipated. He had no time to slam the brakes on and there was a nasty collision. Infuriated, he jumped out and demanded: `How dare you step on brakes like that?` `Do I need your permission,` the other one thundered, `to stop my car in my garage the way I want?` Moral of the story: You are in for shocks if you seek solutions to your problems by following others blindly!
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Rein in these wild buffaloes!
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:24 PM SL Time
No sooner had the government won the budget vote than its goons attacked two buses carrying UNP supporters after the party`s convention in Gampaha on Sunday. The UNP has complained to the police that a group of its activists engaged in putting up flags were also set upon and over 200 flag posts forcibly removed. Is this the way the government is celebrating its victory? Those dastardly attacks must be condemned unreservedly!
The UNP has identified the assailants and one is said to be a goon working for a ministerial thug. The police claim an investigation is underway but it will certainly be hushed up unless adequate pressure is brought to bear on the government. How would the police have acted if the victims had been government supporters? If so, the attackers would have been captured and hauled up before the courts in record time. Yesterday, we reported the police had taken the trouble of disguising themselves as telecom workers to gain entry to Reuter Photojournalist Anuruddha Lokuhapuarachchi`s house to question his wife on his contacts. The Kiribathgoda Police recently summoned one of our senior journalists over a report that money had been forcibly obtained for a religious function by a gang with political patronage. The usual practice is for the police to contact the Editor concerned and not summon reporters. However, the police got cold feet later, obfuscated the issue and apparently dropped it. Why do the police lack such high octane performance when the Opposition activists are attacked and their property destroyed or looted? By the way, what has become of the investigation into the burning of the Sunday Leader press?
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After the voting
Sunday, 16 December 2007 - 9:10 AM SL Time
The result of the budget vote on Friday evening was greeted by the lighting of firecrackers in Colombo and probably in other parts of the country where political Godfathers arranged for their supporters to do the needful. The celebration was not merely the passage of what government strategists like to call a ``war budget,`` but the survival of the government itself which had been increasingly called to question ever since the JVP voted against the second reading last month. When the final tally was counted, soon after Minister Anura Bandaranaike changed sides yet again, President Mahinda Rajapaksa`s government was comfortably home and dry with 114 votes in favour and 67 against. The JVP, commanding 38 votes, abstained.
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|Sports News Sports News Forum|
Sri Lanka lose again as Bangladesh takes series
Wednesday, 19 December 2007 - 10:48 AM SL Time
Sri Lanka lost the fourth one dayer of the five match series against Bangladesh at Narayanganj Osmani Stadium in Fatullah on Monday to take the series.
Bangladesh showed that the 3-2 series win against the Pakistan under 19 side was not a flash in pan. It was the Sri Lanka`s batting that let them down again.
Chasing a modest target 168 they were well on their way to victory with openers Dilshan Munaweera and Dinesh Chandimal giving them a flying start.
The pair put on 65 runs in 57 balls but their separation saw the other batsmen unable to come in terms with right arm pacie Subashs Roy`s fiery bowling and folded up for a paltry 118. Roy ended with top figures of 5 for 24 in from his ten overs.
Bangladesh Under 19 - 167 in 48 overs (Nasir Hossain 46, Marshall Ayub 42 n.o., Mohamed Nadimuddin 41 Navin Kavikara 3 for 22, Imesh Udayanga 2 for 27)
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Fabulous Galle ready for Test
Tuesday, 18 December 2007 - 12:29 PM SL Time
The Galle International Cricket Stadium was destined to not host any more international cricket matches due to the 2004 tsunami and boardroom politics at Sri Lanka Cricket that existed in early 2005, where the authorities were contemplating moving the venue elsewhere in the district, but it has fought all bureaucracy and is ready to resume Test cricket again.
The third and final Test match between England and Sri Lanka is ready to begin here today.
But play will not begin until noon as the outfield needs to be trimmed and the wicket needs to dry up.
A heavy downpour on Monday prevented the authorities from applying the finishing touches, but when it resumes, Galle is sure to remain as a Sri Lankan stronghold for many more years to come.
The venue was declared open on Monday, by President Mahinda Rajapakase and the new look stadium is right up there with all the modern facilities.
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Taj TV deal is clear, insists SLC
Sunday, 16 December 2007 - 9:12 AM SL Time
Sri Lanka Cricket in an unsigned letter dated December 11th referring to our report last week headlined `Dharmadasa signs dubious television deal without interim committee`s knowledge` said, `Reference to the aforementioned article appeared in the sports section of the Sunday Island Newspaper on 9th December, 2007 under the above heading, which said article was written by Mr. Rex Clementine, we like to emphasize that the matters reported in your newspaper under the said article are blatantly incorrect and false.
Draft of the said agreements (Taj Television) were tabled and confirmed by the Interim Committee and minuted on 8th October 2007.`
We have checked with a senior official with SLC, who confirmed that the letter, though without a signature, was SLC`s and they take responsibility for it.
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