The Lanka Academic

VOL. 1, NO. 164

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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 24th, 2000.
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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...
Kesara Ratnatunga, The Sunday Times, Colombo. The computer screen was their window to the rest of the world and they were having a field day. Exploring with wide-eyed wonder what lay beyond their horizons, were the grade seven and eight students of Nivaththaka Chethiya Maha Vidyalaya, Anuradhapura, the first beneficiaries of the Lanka Academic Network's (LAcNet) 'Computers for Sri Lankan Schools' project. More...
The Ordeal of Civilians in Thenmaratchy
September 7, 2000 University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) People from all communities and from all parts of the country have been through many horrors and ordeals from the time the flames of conflict engulfed this country in July 1983. But seldom has anything been so prolonged and full of constant terror and anxiety as what several thousands of people in Thenmaratchy, the south-eastern sector of the Jaffna peninsula with Chavakacheri as its main town, endured for three weeks and more. 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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Minister Ashraff dead
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 1.25 p.m. Saturday September 16. Minister for Ports and Shipping and Leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress and the newly formed National Unity Alliance, A. H. M. Ashraff this morning was killed when the helicopter he was travelling in went down at Aranayake, Urakanda in the Kegalle District.

Ten other police officers who were travelling with the Minister are also believed dead. Police are recovering the bodies from the crash site while former General Secretary for the SLMC and National Unity Alliance strongman, Rauf Hakeem, and other local politicos have rushed to the scene of the crash.

Even before the campaign for the October 10 polls kicked off, Ashraff was very much in the limelight as he picked on another cabinet colleague, M. H. M. Fowzie, to wage a battle of words. The controversy continued with little response from the President other than a written apology three weeks ago.

As Ashraff continued his fight with Fowzie the President was seen to take a back seat and appeared exasperated at the theatrics of the SLMC Leader.

Only yesterday Ashraff seen to be acting recently as a Dictator, in an apparent fit of pique demanded an explanation from M. L. A. M. Hizbullah for an incident which had taken place four years ago. Hizbullah was issued a show cause letter and castigated by the SLMC Leader for violating the party line which the latter said emulated the traditions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad.
Published: Sat Sep 16 03:46:49 EDT 2000

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Muslim minister in hot water over liquor licence  -
Helicopter crash in Kegalle  - Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo
15 Feared Dead in Sri Lanka Crash  - Altavista
''Ashraff severed ties with PA before crash''  - The Hindu NUS
Ashraff's funeral tonight  - Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo

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Ashraff, a visionary leader
The Hindu, Sunday, September 17, 2000. COLOMBO, SEPT. 16. In 1976, when the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) passed the famous Vaddukodai resolution, which called for an independent Tamil State, one of the delegates representing the Muslims of the eastern province was a young lawyer. Last month, as M.H.M. Ashraff passionately argued in Parliament in favour of the new Constitution Bill that promises devolution of power to the Tamil and Muslim minorities in a united Sri Lanka, it was difficult to believe that this was the same man who had played an active role at Vaddukodai. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 17:26:46 EDT 2000

Bodies recovered from crash of Sri Lankan military helicopter
Virtual New York, Saturday, 16 September 2000 16:24 (ET). Sri Lanka's air force Saturday launched an investigation into the crash Saturday of a military helicopter that killed a government minister and 12 other people. Sources in the air force said Air Marshal Jayalath Weerakoddy had appointed a special team of investigators after receiving preliminary reports that bad weather and poor visibility might have caused the crash. Rescuers have recovered 12 of the 13 bodies from the crash site, including that of Sri Lanka's minister for ports, M.H.M. Ashraff, according to the government information center set up in response to the crash.The Russian-made MI-17 helicopter - which Sri Lanka uses to ferry government and military officials -- was headed to the eastern Ampara district. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 17:29:00 EDT 2000

SLAF appoints committee to probe helicopter crash
Daily News, 17 September, 2000. The Sri Lanka Air Force(SLAF) yesterday appointed a special four-member team headed by Chief of Staff Air Vice Marshal T. D. Perera to investigate the helicopter crash which killed Ports Minister A. H. M. Ashraff and fourteen others. The Russian-made Air Force VIP helicopter MI-17, chartered by Minister Ashraff was being flown from Colombo to Ampara before it crashed in hilly thickets at Aranayaka area in the Kegalle district, according to SLAF sources. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 19:03:41 EDT 2000

Lankan minister dies leaving political storm
India Abroad, Sept 17, 2000 03:50 Hrs (IST) . Colombo: A controversial Sri Lankan Muslim minister, who died in a helicopter crash Saturday, has caused a political whirlwind by saying shortly before he got on board that he was pulling out of a pact with President Chandrika Kumaratunga. With a little over four weeks to go before the October 10 parliamentary polls, Ports Minister M.H.M. Ashraff's statement, which was released before news of his death was confirmed, has caused consternation in government circles, political sources said. The statement sent out by his office said that the National Unity Alliance (NUA) would "as of today have nothing to do with the PA (ruling People's Alliance) in view of comments made by (ruling party general secretary) D.M. Jayaratne." More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 20:11:00 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
SLMC's future 'uncertain'  - The Hindu (International)
Probe ordered into copter crash  - The Hindu NUS

Key minister killed in Sri Lanka crash
BBC South Asia, Saturday, 16 September, 2000, 09:18 GMT 10:18. The Sri Lankan Ports Minister, AHM Ashraff, and 14 others have been killed in a helicopter crash in a rural area near the town of Aranayake. The authorities believe engine failure caused the accident. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 08:29:53 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka minister among 14 dead after helicopter crash  -
Minister drops political bombshell just before crash  -
Ashraff: Sri Lanka's Muslim minister plagued by controversy  -
Sri Lanka Muslim minister killed in crash as party quits coalition  -
Muslim Congress leader AHM Ashraff and five others feared killed in Helicopter crash  - Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo

Human Rights Commission summons Polls Chief
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 9.20 p.m. SLT Saturday September 16. Dayananda Dissanayake has now been summoned before the Human Rights Commission in lieu of a petition which has been submitted by PA candidate Ananda Goonetilleke, who alleges Dissanayake has acted in violation of his rights when he secretly attempted to print 3 million stickers which were to be attached to polling cards.

Dissanayake is scheduled to appear before the Commission on September 19. The Polls Chief meanwhile continues to insist that he acted purely in the interest of the nation and all political parties to ensure a free and fair election on October 10.
Published: Sat Sep 16 11:32:52 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
Sri Lanka anti-rigging bid enters human rights row  -
JVP invites all parties to defeat PA attempt for poll rigging  - PRIU

Grenade lobbed at Ranil today
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 9.05 p.m. SLT Saturday September 16. A grenade was lobbed at a motorcade in which the Opposition Leader Ranil Wickramesinghe was travelling in today at Galgamuwa in the Kurunegala District.

The attack came soon after Wickramesinghe had finished addressing an election rally at Galgamuwa this afternoon. Five supporters of the UNP were reportedly injured in the attack.

Wickramesinghe who was scheduled to address another election propaganda meeting at Ariyapola also in the Kurunegala district later this evening, cancelled his address and instead was brought back to Colombo. UNP stalwarts allege the attack was carried out by members of the ruling People's Alliance.

The Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) allege that 307 incidents of election related violence have been reported as of September 15, 2000. Of these, 176 (57%) have been classified as Major incidents which include Murder (06), Attempted Murder (04), Hurt (45), Grievous Hurt (06), Assault (58) and Threat and Intimidation (35). 02 Incidents each involving the Misuse of State Resources have also been reported from the Badulla and Colombo districts respectively, bringing the total number of incidents in this category to 15.

The People's Alliance are the alleged perpetrators in 163 incidents (53%). Ninety Seven (97) of the complaints against the PA allege Major Offences and 66 fall under the Minor Offences category. The UNP is allegedly responsible for 69 incidents of violence of which 45 fall into the category of Major Offences. Six (06) complaints have been made against the JVP,

while 57 complaints have been made against persons of unknown political affiliation. The UNP is responsible for 125 of the complaints reported, of which 99 or 79% have been made against the PA. Ninety Nine (99) complaints have also been made by the People's Alliance, of which 20 are inter-party complaints and 53 are against the UNP.

The use of fire arms have been reported in 54 incidents, with the PA named as the alleged perpetrator in 30 incidents and persons of unidentified political affiliation in 15. The UNP has been identified as the alleged perpetrator in 07 incidents involving the use of fire arms.

The highest number of incidents (72) has been reported from the North Western Province. This constitutes 23% of the total number of incidents. The Kurunegala and Puttalam districts account for 33 and 39 incidents respectively. The People's Alliance are allegedly responsible for 41 incidents in the North Western Province, while the United National Party are allegedly responsible for 13. A total of 49 incidents have been reported from the Western Province and 35 from the Central Province. The Uva Province accounts for 32 incidents while the North Central, Southern and Sabaragamuwa Provinces each account for 31 incidents respectively.
Published: Sat Sep 16 11:32:52 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
213 complaints to police  - AsiaGateway

Ranil's convoy attacked, 1 killed at UNP meeting
The Hindu (International), Sunday, September 17, 2000. COLOMBO, SEPT. 16. In what is turning out to be an increasingly violent campaign to Sri Lanka's October 10 general elections, a grenade was thrown at the convoy of the United National Party (UNP) leader, Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe, as it was leaving the venue of an election meeting while a person was shot dead at the site of his next meeting. The meeting, at a site 150 km. from the capital in Kurunegala district, was cancelled following the killing. The victim had apparently protested against the pasting of UNP election posters at the meeting venue when an unidentified person shot him. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 17:22:16 EDT 2000

83 Tiger suspects rounded up in Colombo
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 9.15 p.m. SLT Saturday September 16. Deputy Inspector General of Police for Colombo, Bodhi Liyanage said today that 83 Tamil Tiger suspects were rounded up in Colombo yesterday after a suicide bomber killed 8 and injured over 25 persons in an attack at Colombo's busy Eye Hospital Junction.

Mr. Liyanage further claimed that investigations after the bomb attack has revealed that two other suicide bombers accompanied the killer who detonated explosives last morning in Colombo. The three human bombs had allegedly arrived three days ago in a train bound from Vavuniya to Colombo.

It is not yet known who the killers real target was, though it has been speculated that they may possibly have been waiting for Health Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva who was expected to pass the area around the time the killer was discovered.
Published: Sat Sep 16 11:32:52 EDT 2000

Film on Tamil-Sinhala unity a huge hit
India Abroad, Sept. 16, 2000 23:15 Hrs (IST) . New Delhi: A Sri Lankan medical technician's debut film on Tamil-Sinhala unity in the time of war is breaking box office records in the civil war-torn country. ‘Saroja’ by Somaratne Dissanayake, who gave up a lucrative job in Australia to enter film making, is running to packed movie halls since its release in early March this year. The subject touched a chord with the war-weary Sri Lankans so much that cinemas are arranging special early mornings shows to accommodate the rush. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 14:36:38 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Film on Tamil-Sinhala unity is a big hit in Lanka  - The Hindustan Times

Vaiko defends LTTE, reaffirms support to Eelam
The Hindu NUS, 16.00 hrs (IST) on September 16, 2000. Madurai, Sept. 16. (PTI): The MDMK, a partner in the National Democratic Alliance Government at the Centre, has defended the LTTE's armed struggle for a separate Tamil State in Sri Lanka and said it was committed to the cause of the Tigers. ``The LTTE was forced to take up arms as the Sinhalese had violated all accords (to end the ethnic strife) and refused to give due rights to the Tamils,'' MDMK chief Vaiko told a public meeting here past midnight yesterday. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 08:20:46 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
LTTE plays havoc with human lives again  - PRIU
Vaiko defends LTTE struggle for separate state  - Times of India (Breaking News)

Ashraff killed in crash
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 1.10 p.m September 16. A Sri Lankan Airforce Mi 7 helicopter crashed this morning carrying minister of ports and Leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress, M.H. M. Ashraff and fourteen others including the two Airforce pilots.

The crash occurred in Debathgama in Aranayake in the Kegalle district. The Aranayake police confirmed the incident but refused to comment further.The minister had been on his way to the Eastern province to campaign in the forthcoming general elections.
Published: Sat Sep 16 03:14:04 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka braces for more suicide bombings ahead of polls
6, Saturday Sep. 16, 09:33:12. COLOMBO, Sept 16 (AFP) - Sri Lankan police stepped up already tight security here Saturday, a day after a suicide bomber killed seven and raised fears of more bombings ahead of next month's parliamentary elections. Colombo's police chief Bodi Liyanage said they had information that at least 23 suicide bombers known as Black Tigers had entered the capital together with another 15 rebels deployed for spying missions. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 09:41:42 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Explosives discovered in Trishaw  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo
Security stepped up in Colombo amid fears of more bombings  - India Abroad
Sri Lanka braces for more suicide bombings ahead of polls  - Yahoo

Sri Lanka FM asks Canada to clamp down on Tamil financiers, Sep 16 2000 09:30 IST. Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar planned to ask the Canadian government Saturday for tighter laws against organizations seeking financing for terrorist groups. In an interview with AFP, Kadirgamar said Friday that there were some 200,000 Tamils currently living in Canada and financiers for the rebel Tamil Tigers had found a ready source of income from many of these exiles.Kadirgamar spoke of the despair of Sri Lankan regular troops who were often faced with the prospect of killing children or risking their own lives."They find it difficult to shoot because they 'see' their own children there." More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 00:26:10 EDT 2000

50 LTTE rebels killed in fresh fighting
India Abroad, Sept. 16, 2000 18:58 Hrs (IST) . Colombo: Sri Lankan Army Saturday claimed to have killed 50 Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels in separate encounters in the country's north and east since Friday. Army launched a limited offensive from the newly acquired areas in Colombuthurai near Jaffna town Friday in which 26 rebels were killed, an official press release said here. Troops used rocket-propelled grenades (RPG), machine guns, artillery and multi- barrel rocket launchers to attack militants when they attempted to flee from their fortified bunkers, it said. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 11:30:09 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka says 392 Tigers killed in past two weeks  -
S.Lanka says 26 rebels killed in northern thrust  - MSNBC

NZ to host Zimbabwe, Sri Lanka, Pakistan
Times of India (Breaking News), 16 September 2000 . AUCKLAND: New Zealand cricket announced the schedule for visiting touring teams for its 2000/01 domestic season Saturday, with Test series planned against Zimbabwe, Sri Lanka and Pakistan. The third Test against Pakistan in Christchurch from March 27-31 marks a return to Test cricket in the South Island city after a two-year absence and will be played on a portable pitch set in a removable tray. Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka will both tour New Zealand ahead of Pakistan, beginning in mid-December. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 08:22:05 EDT 2000

NUA not constituent party of PA says the General Secretary
PRIU, Saturday Sep. 16, 09:28:35. The National Unity Alliance (Jathika Samagi Peramuna) is not a constituent party of the PA, said PA General Secretary Minister D.M. Jayaratne in a press release issued yesterday. He said all candidates belonging to the PA contesting the forthcoming election are being fielded under the chair symbol of the PA only. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 09:34:51 EDT 2000

I debate only with the puppeteer - Ranil
AsiaGateway, Saturday Sep. 16, 09:42:15. Opposition and UNP leader Ranil Wickremasinghe responding to the government’s offer of a debate with Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake has told President Chandrika Kumaratunga that he will debate with only the "puppeteer" and not the "puppet". Wickremasinghe in a letter to President Kumaratunga yesterday said: "several days ago I wrote to you outlining your underhand methods for fighting elections. At the time I challenged you to debate various issues including your comments about the UNP and the LTTE. More...
Published: Sat Sep 16 09:48:57 EDT 2000

Sihala Urumaya to launch Jaffna campaign
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 7.40 a.m September 16. The Sihala Urumaya party led by lawyer S.L. Gunasekara will launch their election campaign in Jaffna on September 23. Twelve candidates , all Sinhalese are contesting from the new political party in the forthcoming elections.

All their candidates will have to seek the support of the Tamil citizens in the area as there are no Sinhalese and Muslim residents in Jaffna. Upul Gunewardane leader of the Sihala Urumaya contesting Jaffna has told a weekend paper that the Tamil residents welcomed the group with a spirit of solidarity when they visited Jaffna to hand over their nominations.

The General Secretary of the Party Tilak Karunaratne said last week that Sihala Urumaya will fight for the lost rights of the Sinhalese while ensuring and guaranteeing equality before the law to all citizens of the country. He also said that his party is committed to uphold the unitary state of Sri Lanka and vowed to crush the Northern terrorism militarily.
Published: Fri Sep 15 22:07:21 EDT 2000

Tigers threaten to annihilate ex-Tamil militant groups
HindustanTimes, september 16. THE SANGILIYAN Padai (Sangilian Army), believed to be an arm of the LTTE, has dubbed the ex-Tamil militant groups, now in the electoral fray in Jaffna, as traitors. It warned that these groups will be annihilated and advised people in Jaffna to stay away from such groups, as they may become unintended victims in an attack. In a written communication widely circulated in Jaffna, the Sangiliyan Padai pointed out that the former militant groups had not bothered to visit the people of Jaffna when they were displaced, deprived and starving after the war but were now seeking votes from them. These groups had begun as freedom fighters but, at a time when the liberation struggle was about to succeed, had become "traitors" to the Tamil cause. They supported the national emergency only to get money from the Sri Lankan Government, the communique said. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 20:24:35 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
LTTE front organisation issues threat in Jaffna  - The Hindu (International)

Author says ban on his book is baseless
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 7.20 a.m September 16. Manjula Wediwardane, the author of 'Mary named Mariah' asked the Colombo district court yesterday to lift the ban on his book as the book was a high quality publication on literature.Publication of Wediwardane's book was restrained on an appeal made by a Catholic priest . Filing answers before Additional District Judge P. Wijesinghe ,Wediwardane said that the banned short story was published in the Sinhala 'Ravaya' newspaper earlier and thus the ban was baseless. The author stated in his answer that he too was a catholic and though the plaintiff Fr. Cyril Gamini Fernando, President of the National Catholic Mass Media Center was a Catholic, he had no right to speak on behalf of the Catholics and asked the courts to dismiss the action.

In this case , plaintiff priest Fr. Cyril Gamini Fernando said that Wediwardane's book containing a series of short stories had certain defamatory statements. He said that the stories were abusive and brought humiliation on the exemplary life of mother Mary and the life of Jesus Christ.

Court put off the decision on extending the enjoining order which restrained the publication of the book until September 27
Published: Fri Sep 15 21:29:13 EDT 2000

Twenty three suicide bombers in Colombo
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 7.00 p.m September 15. Bodhi Liyanage , deputy inspector general in charge of Colombo said today that twenty three LTTE suicide bombers have already entered Colombo. He requested the people to be extra vigilant. Liyanage also said that police will tighten security in and out of Colombo.

He said that the police will not allow any political meetings to be held in Colombo and appealed to all candidates contesting from Colombo district to cooperate with the police.
Published: Fri Sep 15 09:22:39 EDT 2000

Reserve police constable Nelson's final moment.
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 5.30 p.m September 15. Reserve police constable Nelson hailed from Anuradapura. He was only 28 years old. He was poor. Nelson's police uniform displayed the number 27550. But, today in Colombo at 10.00 a.m , when the security staff at the eye hospital informed him about a suspicious man Nelson would have thought it was going to be one of those routine checks.

It was not to be. He tried to inspect the suspicious man. But, only an explosion was heard. Nelson was gone. His body parts were all over. Nelson's legs were on the spot where the bomb exploded, his heart on the center of the road and his head on the opposite side of the road , near Jayasiri florist at Deans road.

Bodhi Liyanage, DIG , Colombo said that Nelson will be promoted posthumously. His family compensated and continue to receive his salary. The DIG was saddened. He said "This is the life of a policemen in Sri Lanka today"
Published: Fri Sep 15 07:35:04 EDT 2000

Minister escapes bid on life: 7 killed in LTTE attack
The Hindustan Times, Colombo, September 15. A senior Sri Lankan minister escaped a possible assassination attempt in an LTTE suicide attack that left seven persons dead and 28 injured in central Colombo this morning. The bomber, who was lurking at the main gates of a hospital trggered a powerful explosion minutes after the convoy of minister for helath Nirmal Siripala De Silva, entered the compound of his office located a few yards away from the hospital, eye witnesses said. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 09:24:15 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Five killed in Colombo blast  - India Abroad
8 killed, 21 hurt in suicide bombing in Sri Lanka's capital  - Yahoo
Seven killed in suicide bombing outside Colombo hospital complex  -
Suicide bomber brings carnage to hospital doorstep  -

Jaffna children suffer trauma
BBC South Asia, Friday, 15 September, 2000, 19:19 GMT 20:19 U. The most worrying aspect of the fighting for local people in Sri Lanka's northern Jaffna peninsula is the traumatic effect it has on children. The incessant shelling and bombing of Tamil Tiger positions by helicopters and aircraft can be heard even in the relative safety of Jaffna town - still held by the government. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 18:53:46 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka rounds up beggars to prevent bomb blasts, Sep 15 2000 17:44 IST. COLOMBO, Sept 15 (AFP) - Sri Lanka police rounded up at least 75 urchins from the capital Colombo during a two-day operation aimed at preventing Tamil Tiger rebels using them as look outs, police said Friday. The operation ended Thursday, but in less than 24 hours, a suspected Tamil Tiger suicide bomber staged a devastating attack outside the main Eye hospital here Friday, killing himself and six others. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 09:19:33 EDT 2000

Pictures from Site of Explosion
AP-Yahoo, september 15. An armed soldier stands guard at the site of the bomb blast in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Friday, Sept.15, 2000. A suspected Tamil rebel suicide bomber set off explosives strapped to his body, killing himself and five others when police tried to check him outside an eye hospital in the capital. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 13:14:18 EDT 2000

At Least Six Killed in Sri Lanka Suicide Blast
Yahoo, Friday September 15 8:54 AM LOMBO, Sri Lanka . A suspected Tamil Tiger rebel suicide bomb attack killed six people in the Sri Lankan capital Friday as fresh clashes broke out between government forces and the separatist guerrillas in the north of the country.The bomb attack outside a government hospital came as the country prepares for October 10 parliamentary elections.Hospital officials said 28 people were wounded in the explosion, including six hospital staff. Six of the wounded were in a serious condition. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 19:28:00 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Suicide bomber kills himself, six others in Sri Lankan capital  - ABC News
Suicide bomb attack in Colombo  - Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo
At Least Six Killed in Sri Lanka Suicide Blast  - Yahoo
At Least Six Killed in Sri Lanka Suicide Blast  - Yahoo
Suicide-bomber kills 7 in Colombo  - The Hindu (International)
Six Killed in Sri Lanka Suicide Bomb Attack  - ABC News
Bomb in Colombo  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo

5 killed in Colombo blast
India Abroad, Sept 15, 2000 11:00 Hrs (IST) . Colombo: Five people were killed and 20 injured in a powerful explosion set off by a suspected Tamil Tiger suicide bomber outside a hospital in central Colombo on Friday morning, police said. The LTTE suicide bomber was blown to smithereens in the blast, which took place around 9.30, am when an army jeep approached the eye hospital at ward place. The victims included a constable. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 02:24:37 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Chronology of Sri Lankan suicide bomb attacks  -
Suicide bomber kills himself, four others in Sri Lankan capital  - ABC News
Suicide bomber kills self, 4 others in Colombo  - Times of India (Breaking News)
Six dead in suicide bombing outside Sri Lanka hospital  -
Five dead as suicide bomber stages attack in Sri Lankan capital  -
Blast rocks Sri Lankan capital  - BBC
Suicide bomber stages attack in Sri Lanka capital  - 123India
Suicide bomb attack in Colombo  - 123India

Olympics-Sri Lanka's Jayasinghe says she is a threat again
Altavista, Friday Sep. 15, 08:01:24. SYDNEY, Sept 15 (Reuters) - Controversial Sri Lankan sprinter Susanthika Jayasinghe says drug scandal and injury worries are behind her and feels she can repeat her surprise silver medal performance in the world championships three years ago. Jayasinghe shocked the athletics world and became a national hero when she finished second in the 200 metres at the world championships in Athens. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 08:07:26 EDT 2000

Families of S.Lanka missing to march to war zone
Altavista, Friday Sep. 15, 08:03:23. COLOMBO, Sept 15 (Reuters) - Families of missing Sri Lankan servicemen said on Friday they planned to march to the country's northern war zone to free relatives held by Tamil Tiger rebels. ``We have definitely decided to go,'' E.P. Nanayakkara, president of the Association of Relatives of Servicemen Missing in Action, told Reuters. He said the group had given up lobbying the government to take up the cause. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 08:09:58 EDT 2000

Ranil tells CBK to hold fair polls or be shunned
AsiaGateway, Friday Sep. 15, 08:20:24. UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe on Wednesday requested President Chandrika Kumaratunga and the government to join hands with all political parties and democratic forces in the country to hold a free and fair election on October 10 or get shunned by the people.He said it was only the PA that was working against a fair election this time while all other parties whatever ideological differences they have are together on this issue. "Chandrika is so desperate today that she even wants to stop her brother from doing politics," he said. More...
Published: Fri Sep 15 08:26:51 EDT 2000

Chandrika first President to use special parliamentary provision
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 7.20 p.m. SLT Friday September 15. Legal sources are puzzled over President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge using a constitutional provision which allows for Parliament to be reconvened after it is dissolved to review the state of emergency.

The first Head of State to have done so, Dr. Rohan Edrisinha, Constitutional Law Lecturer at Colombo University said that what is unusual is that the provision within the constitution allows for Parliament to remain in session until the conclusion of the General Election or the end of the State of Emergency. Which ever is sooner.

This is unusual and worrying," Dr. Edrisinha asserted, adding that the provision in the constitution probably intended that Parliament should be reconvened after it is dissolved only to review the emergency. However, once reconvened, Parliament can technically discuss other matters as well and remain in session until the polls are concluded or the State of Emergency is lifted.

Section 7 of Article 70 of the Sri Lankan constitution provides for the President to convene Parliament after its dissolution. According to this section - "If at any date after the dissolution of Parliament the President is satisfied that an emergency has arisen of such nature that an earlier meeting of Parliament is necessary, he may by proclamation summon the Parliament which has been dissolved to meet on a date not less than three days from the date of such proclamation and such Parliament shall stand dissolved upon the termination of the emergency or the conclusion of the General Election, whichever is earlier"

Dr. Edrisinha claimed that this provision lent speculation that when Parliament was reconvened on Thursday September 14,the House would discuss the recent controversy surrounding the Elections Commissioner. Dr. Edrisinha noted that "this would have been highly improper, despite the fact the constitution technically allows for such a provision."

According to Section 5 Article 155 of the constitution, emergency regulations proclaimed by the President will be in operation for one month from the date of the proclamation.

Dr. Edrisinha however pointed out that according to Section 6 of Article 155, the Presidential proclamation of the regulations under the Public Security Ordinance will end in two weeks if not approved by Parliament by a simple majority.

Section 6 (a) of Article 155 makes provision to keep emergency regulations in operation in a situation where the Parliament is dissolved and canot meet within 14 days to approve the proclamation of the regulations.

According to Section 6 (a) of Article 155, "if Parliament stands dissolved at the date of making such proclamation then such proclamation shall expire at the end of 10 days after the date on which Parliament shall next meet and sit..."
Published: Fri Sep 15 10:14:37 EDT 2000

'Jaya Gold' takes over humanitarian task of the ICRC
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 7.30 p.m. SLT Friday September 15. The 'MV Jaya Gold' a ship chartered by the International Committee of the Red Cross(ICRC) has replaced the 'MV Jaya Gulf' which after three years of service sailed back to Singapore early this month.

Harsha Gunawardena, Spokesman for the ICRC said that from the 1990's due to the depleted health facilities in the Northern Peninsula,the ICRC began a humanitarian service which has remained the only one of its kind to transport patients who are in need of further specialized treatment to Trincomalee and thereafter overland to hospitals in Colombo. "The ship remains a humanitarian link between the South and the Jaffna Peninsula," Gunawardena said.

The ICRC he reiterated has received guarantees from both the Government and the LTTE that the humanitarian ship will at all times receive safe passage.The ship which operates once a week carries 35 to 50 patients on each voyage.The vessel berthed at Trincomalee harbour left Tuesday September 12, for Jaffna carrying 27 passengers on board including 16 patients and medical supplies for the strife torn northern peninsula.

The ship is used by all other Non Governmental Organizations working in Jaffna which include the UNHCR,CARE and GTZ.The vessel is used to transfer personnel and goods including medical personnel and drugs and diplomats on special trips to the war torn area.

In fact, the ship carries drug supplies for the entire health network in Jaffna.Government departments and schools too are dependent on its service for the transportation of laboratory goods and other essential items.

The ICRC chartered vessel costs USD 3500 per day to maintain and runs up a fuel bill of USD 60,000 every three months.From January to August this year the ICRC transferred 1241 patients up and down and about 200 metric tons of drugs and medical equipment to all government hospitals in the peninsula.
Published: Fri Sep 15 10:14:37 EDT 2000

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