The Lanka Academic

VOL. 1, NO. 152

Urgent Anouncement

LAcNet server came under an attack by an intruder once again. As a result, our server was down since late Friday Sept. 1 through Sunday Sept. 3, Eastern Standard Time, USA. As you may know, our sever is maintained by LAcNet volunteers who have normal day jobs. As a result, we realize that we are not equipped to handle such emergencies in a timely manner in bringing you uninterrupted service. We are exploring all avenues to determine how to avoid similar situations in the future to bring you Sri Lanka news continuously without interruption.

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The Lanka Academic, will carry a series of online "Question and Answer" sessions with prominent Sri Lankan personalities. As the first guest in the series, the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Mr. Mangala Moonesinghe will answer questions submitted by you. A moderator will maintain the decorum of this online forum. While the scope of the questions is wide open, it's expected that the questions submitted would fall within the areas of expertise relevant to Mr.Moonesinghe's background as a politician, scholar and a diplomat. The guidelines and instructions for sending in questions and viewing answer are posted at current issue of The Lanka Academic here. The current Question and Answer session will end on September 17th, 2000.
The Constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka
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(The proposed new constitution)
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Chulie Kirtisinghe de Silva, LAcNet. This story relates the realization of a dream of a dedicated virtual community of globally dispersed volunteer Sri Lankan academics, who mobilized Sri Lankan Diaspora for funding; and then formed horizontal partnerships with local and international agencies to set up a computer center in rural Sri Lanka. It also relates the metamorphosis of an out of work teacher to be the Digital Ambassador for Sri Lanka through training and empowerment. It is the story of two communities coming together; one virtual in cyberspace, the other a land based poor rural community; one the haves, and the other the have nots; - the empowered, empowering and bridging the digital divide. More...
US State Department. Colombo, 4 August 2000 - The U.S. State Department announced on July 31 that the mail-in period for the next U.S. Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program (DV-2002) will run from noon, October 2, through noon, November 1, 2000. There is no application fee and no special application form is required. The application with the necessary information can simply be typed on a blank sheet of paper. More...
 The Lanka Academic News stories are provided by independent correspondents. Views expressed are not necessarily those of LAcNet. Updates are triggered by events, 24hrs a day. Funding is provided by LAcNet. Redistribution is strictly prohibited. To ensure our continued existence, please support LAcNet.
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Sri Lanka counts the dead in hundreds after fresh fighting in Jaffna, Sep 05 2000 08:22 IST. COLOMBO, Sept 5 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels and government forces were counting casualties in the hundreds Tuesday, a day after ferocious fighting killed at least 360 people, officials said. The separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) announced over their clandestine Voice of Tigers radio Tuesday that they had pushed back government forces to their original position after two days of fighting.The LTTE said it had captured the bodies of 50 government soldiers. They claimed to have killed over 100 troops and wounded at least 600 in the latest round of fighting initiated by security forces in the northern peninsula of Jaffna. More...
Published: Mon Sep 4 23:52:24 EDT 2000
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Hundreds die in Sri Lanka offensive  - BBC South Asia

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BBC South Asia, Monday, 4 September, 2000, 10:32 GMT 11:32 UK. The Sri Lankan Minister for Tourism has been beaten up by members of his own party, as campaigning begins for parliamentary elections next month. Police said the minister, H B Semasinghe, was attacked by supporters of another candidate of the ruling People's Alliance in an argument over election posters. More...
Published: Mon Sep 4 23:29:06 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka gays mark anniversary with ball
Times of India, 5 September 2000 . COLOMBO: Homosexuality is illegal in conservative Sri Lanka where offenders can be jailed for 12 years, but the country's most active gay group is set to mark its fifth anniversary with a ball. The gay rights movement, the so-called Companions on a Journey, is planning a gala on Friday to turn their birthday into an annual ritual with music and dancing at a resort hotel here. "The main focus is to bring the visible (gay) people together," said the leading gay rights activist and leader of Companions, Sherman de Rose. More...
Published: Mon Sep 4 23:32:38 EDT 2000

Lanka registers unprecedented number of poll candidates
India Abroad, Sept 05, 2000 3:30 Hrs (IST) . Colombo: More than 5,400 political hopefuls in Sri Lanka have registered their names with the elections commissioner as nominations for October's parliamentary polls closed on Monday, officials said. Some 5,430 candidates from several political parties and independent groups are contesting the 225 seats in Parliament, representing 22 electoral districts, they said. The 1994 general election saw 1,449 candidates trying to win over voters. More...
Published: Mon Sep 4 23:37:17 EDT 2000
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Over 5,400 vie for Sri Lanka parliament amid bloodshed  -

Former Sri Lankan army commander's house ransacked, Sep 4 2000 13:00 IST. Colombo, Sep 4 (UNI)- In a daring Act, six armed men broke into former Army Commander Tissa Weeratunga's house but left without taking any valuables, after ransacking the place. General Weeratunga, who was the Army Commander between 1981 and 1985, said the 'break in' had taken place on Saturday night while he and his family members were visiting a friend.He said six armed men, who were also carrying torches, were dressed in black shirts and slacks with black hats and dark glasses. More...
Published: Mon Sep 4 23:57:32 EDT 2000

Major military operation launched in Jaffna
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 6.15 p.m. SLT Sunday September 3. Government troops launched a major offensive in the precincts of Jaffna last night. The operation has already injured some 200 soldiers. According to Brigadier Sanath Karunaratne, Spokesman for the Military, 25 dead bodies of security forces persons were flown down to Colombo today. Brigadier Karunaratne however said that the exact number of casualty figures for the forces cannot yet be confirmed.

The military forces offensive which began in Puttur is moving towards Chavakachcheri in the Northern Peninsula. Brigadier Karunaratne said the SLA using newly acquired Multi Barrel Rocket Launchers, has targeted a number of rebel held areas. "The casualty rate for the LTTE must indeed be high" he asserted, adding however that there were no civilian casualties.

Independent reports meanwhile maintain that hundreds of civilians are fleeing villages in and around the north east of Jaffna and are taking refuge in temples and kovils.

Brigadier Karunaratne denied these reports claiming that there is little or no civilian life in Chavakachcheri and that armed forces are exercising caution in its advance on rebel held strongholds.

The military onslaught follows in the wake of President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge kicking off her election campaign, pledging to "finish the LTTE" in the event the rebel force refuses to lay down arms and hold peace talks with the Government.
Published: Mon Sep 4 22:38:23 EDT 2000

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230 rebels killed - over 300 injured  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo
War dead rise - as battle continues  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo

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