The Lanka Academic

VOL. 1, NO. 203

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Bandula Jayasekera, in Colombo. She has done so much for the country's arts, culture, environment, and its society. She was a member of the Environmental Authority and continues to run the organisation 'Rukrekaganno' from her house. That too because she was asked to vacate the premises the organisation occupied earlier. Once Gamani Fonseka said of her "With her talent she could have won many Oscars if she had been born in America." President Chandrika calls her affectionately 'Chandi Nanda' and Ranil Wickremasinghe is her close relation too. She is the inimitable Irangani Serasinghe. More...

A tribute to a BBC correspondent killed in Jaffna, Sri Lanka.
S. L. Gunasekera. On Thursday the 12th instant while a Central Committee Meeting was in progress we received information that a seat on the National List had been allotted to Sihala Urumaya. No sooner this unexpected news was confirmed Prof C M Madduma Bandara (a Deputy President) suggested that I be nominated to Parliament. There were objections to a decision on this matter being taken by two committee members, Messrs Kamal Deshapriya and Sujith Akkaraiwatta who said that the decision should be taken only after considering the preferences polled and ascertaining the views of the Maha Sangha and other supporters. Mr Thilak Karunaratne our General Secretary then pointed out that preferences were not a relevant consideration in making an appointment to a seat on the National List. 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...
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Tamil inmates butchered in Sri Lanka open prison, toll 25, Oct 25 2000 20:47 IST. COLOMBO, Oct 25 (AFP) - Mobs stormed a rehabilitation centre in central Sri Lanka Wednesday and beat to death 24 Tamil inmates in an orgy of violence that also left another man dead, police said. Hundreds of people, from the majority Sinhalese population, attacked inmates with knives, sticks and stones, police said.President Kumaratunga condemned the slaughter, saying "external forces" were responsible for provoking the attack and that she had despatched two teams of senior police officers to begin investigations."At no time there were any incidents among the detainees and the management," Kumaratunga said in a statement. "There were no incidents with the neighbours either." "It is clear from the information now received by the authorities that provocation from external forces had led to this situation," she said, adding that special measures were being taken to prevent similar violence elsewhere. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 12:43:39 EDT 2000
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Sri Lankan mob kills 25 former child soldiers  - MSNBC
Probe ordered into Lanka camp attack, toll rises to 24  -
Mobs kills Tamil inmates in Sri Lanka prison attack, toll 25  - Yahoo Asia
-Sri Lanka: Center for Ex-Child Soldiers Stormed,11 Dead  - Yahoo Asia

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Villagers attack suspected Tiger rebels at Bandarawela
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 12.10 p.m. SLT Wednesday October 24. Twelve LTTE suspects in the Rehabilitation Center at Bandarawela died this morning when they were attacked by angry villagers. More than 20 others were wounded in the bizarre incident which took place after a prison official was allegedly forcefully detained by the prisoners last night. It is learnt that three of the suspected Tiger rebels died after admission to the Bandarawela hospital while nine were killed on the spot at the centre. The Rehabilitation camp meanwhile was also set on fire by the unruly crowd.

Bandarawela police say that the wounded have been admitted to the hospitals at Bandarawela and Diyatalawela. The army are reported to have moved in to provide security to the two hospitals in order to prevent further attacks on the wounded.
Published: Wed Oct 25 03:16:25 EDT 2000

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Ten LTTE surrendered militants killed in attack  - The Hindustan Times
At least six ex-rebels die in rehab camp attack  - MSNBC
New Sri Lanka attack  - BBC South Asia
Prison clash kills eight in Sri Lanka  - Yahoo Asia
Prison riot kills eight in Sri Lanka  -
Sri Lanka prison attack  - BBC South Asia

Sri Lanka rebel camp attacked
BBC South Asia, Wednesday, 25 October, 2000, 09:57 GMT 10:57 . A riot at an open prison in Sri Lanka has left at least 25 people dead, many of them suspected Tamil Tiger rebels.A mob armed with knives and stones stormed the camp and set fire to it, after reports that about 40 inmates had tried to take over the facility. At least 24 inmates and one of the attackers was killed in the clash and many more are said to be seriously wounded. President Chandrika Kumaratunga has condemned the violence and sent two teams of investigators to the scene of the killings. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 08:31:35 EDT 2000
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8 Tamil inmates beaten to death in Lanka  - India Abroad
Sri Lanka villagers kill 10 ex-rebels in rehab camp  - MSNBC
Mobs slaughter Tamil inmates in Sri Lanka prison attack, toll 25  -

LTTE slanders and attempts to intimidate Island Cor. Dushy Ranetunga in UK
The Island, October 26. The LTTE has launched a campaign of slander and attempted intimidation against the London based correspondent of The Island Dushy Ranetunga following exposures of covert LTTE activites and its fronts worldwide. The attack on our correspodent has been launched through the pro- LTTE Canadian Tamil language newspaper Thamilar Senthumarai.An English translation of the article states " International supporters of the LTTmost of who live as refugees in western countries and carry on the fight for a Tamilhomeland, are today faced with death threats to their lives. These threats come from an organisation called the "8th Regiment of the Northern Lions". More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 19:05:13 EDT 2000

UNP scouts for support
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 11.05 a.m. SLT Wednesday October 25. The main United National Party began talks yesterday with other opposition political parties in a bid to secure support to pressurize the government in implementing conditions put forward by the main opposition party.

The UNP yesterday issued a 69 day deadline which ends on December 31, demanding that the government during this time ensure that an independent judiciary, police commission, elections commission and public service commission is created.

Karu Jayasuriya, Deputy Leader for the UNP said yesterday that the party is forging ahead with a clear cut goal that will ensure good and clean governance.

The Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) meanwhile yesterday issued a statement condemning the working arrangement the PA and UNP have reached. The TULF maintains that the urgent need was to call for an immediate ceasefire and find a solution to the ethnic problem.

An excerpt from the statement reads " that while we acknowledge the importance of the measures referred to above in a democratic setup, yet the paramount question that needs immediate resolution is the stoppage of the war forthwith and all parties combining to find a just and fair solution to the problem that had affected the Sri Lankan Tamils so miserably so long."
Published: Wed Oct 25 03:16:24 EDT 2000

Truce in Sri Lanka for anti-polio campaign
ABC News, 10/25/2000 07:09:00 ET. COLOMBO, Oct 25 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka"s government and Tamil Tiger rebels have agreed to two temporary ceasefires to allow children in the war zone to be vaccinated against polio, the United Nations Children"s Fund UNICEF said on Wednesday. "Both government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) have agreed to observe "days of tranquillity" on October 27-28 and December 1-2 to allow the immunisation of children under five years old against polio," UNICEF said in a statement. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 08:53:41 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka crush Zimbabwe
Times of India (Breaking News), 26 October 2000. SHARJAH: Sri Lanka scored an easy 123-run win over Zimbabwe in the second phase league tie in the Coca Cola tri-nation one-day cricket series on Wednesday. Zimbabwe collapsed to 153 all out in 48.3 overs. Chaminda Vaas and Nuwan Zoysa bowled with venom and started made life difficult for the Zimbabweans by claiming two wickets apiece in their first spells. Earlier in the day, skipper Sanath Jayasuriya struck a blazing 87 off barely 66 balls and set up an opening stand of 110 runs with Romesh Kaluwitharana as Sri Lanka set a target of 277runs for Zimbabwe. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 18:58:11 EDT 2000
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Cricket: Sri Lanka defeat Zimbabwe by 123 runs  - NDTV/MSNBC
Sri Lanka compile 276 for 9  - The Hindu NUS
Jayasuriya sparkles for Lanka  - The Hindu NUS

Journalists protest colleague's slaying
TamilNet, October 25. Over six hundred Sri Lankan journalists protested Wednesday against the brutal slaying of Jaffna based reporter Mylvaganam Nimalarajan allegedly by pro-government militiamen. The picket, conducted by the Free Media Movement, Sri Lanka Tamil Media Alliance and other media institutions in Colombo took place opposite Fort Railway Station for about one and a half hours commencing from 12 noon. Meanwhile, other correspondents say they have been threatened in the wake of the killing. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 12:52:35 EDT 2000
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FMM to hold a picket in Colombo  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo

15 LTTE rebels killed in search operation
The Hindu NUS, 16.00 hrs (IST) on October 25, 2000. Colombo, Oct. 25. (DPA): At least 15 Tamil rebels were killed by security forces in a search operation carried out in the northeastern part of Sri Lanka, where rebels carried out a suicide attack destroying two naval craft and later shot down a helicopter, military officials said today. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 08:33:03 EDT 2000

06 killed and 35 injured after villagers attack detention centre for LTTE carders
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 11.45 SLT 25.10.00. 06 people have been killed and 35 others injured when villagers rampaged through a detention camp holding LTTE carders who had surrendered to the army. The camp in Bidunuwave off Bandarawella is reported to have been holding up to 80 LTTE carders including child soldiers. No details are available yet as to what prompted the villagers to attack the camp. end
Published: Wed Oct 25 01:56:02 EDT 2000

ICRC move into help displaced in China Bay
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 12.00 p.m October 25. The International Committee of Red Cross in Sri Lanka has moved into China Bay to assist over one thousand people displaced during the fighting between the security forces and the LTTE on Monday.

The displaced belong to all three communities.The Sinhalese have taken refuge at the Sinhala Vidyalaya in China Bay while the Tamil and Muslim families have moved to the Muslim Maha Vidyalam in China Bay.

ICRC spokesman in Sri Lanka Harasha Gunewardane said " Our staff in Trincomalee have already distributed mats,plastic roofing sheets and other items to the displaced persons in the area. ICRC mobile health unit also visited schools and conducted clinics for the displaced. We also monitoring the humanitarian situation closely" ICRC has been actively involved in Tricomallee district since 1990.
Published: Wed Oct 25 02:32:01 EDT 2000

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More than 1,250 refugees after Sri Lankan base attack  -

Lanka's record cabinet a huge burden for taxpayers
Yahoo, October 25. Sri Lanka's record number of cabinet ministers and their deputies will cost taxpayers a whopping amount in emoluments, provoking a storm as the protracted ethnic war also takes a heavy economic toll.The 44 ministers who were sworn in last week and their junior ministers who are yet to be named are in line for paychecks that are relatively small. But they will also be entitled to free housing in exclusive neighborhoods, unlimited fuel, entertainment allowances, office staff, free telephones, computers and stationery and loans at special, low rates of interest. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 08:37:12 EDT 2000

IMF Happy With Sri Lanka Steps To Limit Pressure On Rupee
Yahoo Asia, Wednesday, October 25 4:04 PM SGT . The International Monetary Fund said Wednesday it is satisfied with the Sri Lanka central bank's measures to contain pressure on the country's exchange rate. "So far the measures that have been taken seem to be working," said Nadeem Ul Haque, senior resident representative of the IMF in Colombo, in a telephone interview with Dow Jones Newswires. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 08:52:50 EDT 2000
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Sri Lanka Bonds -2:Yields Surge On Higher Govt Borrowing  - Yahoo Asia
IMF Urges New Sri Lanka Govt To Put Econ Plan On Track  - Yahoo Asia

LTTE rob our goods - Says civilians in uncleared areas
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 10. 20 p .m October 24. The LTTE has started robbing goods sent to civilians in uncleared areas, civilians coming from such areas have complained. Many civilians have said that the LTTE forces lorries carrying essential items to unload goods in their stores and then issue expired food items from their stores to be used by the civilian population through the co-operative establishments.

The government of Sri Lanka supplies essential food items to people living in uncleared areas with the help of the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC). Supplies are sent to uncleared areas on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The convoys are checked at the Piramanalakkulam checkpoint by the army and taken up to Madhu with the help of the ICRC. Harasha Gunewardane ICRC spokesman in Colombo told The Lanka Academic "The ICRC merely provides an escort for the crossing of the line as a confidence building measure to the government agent's food convoy. The goods in lorries and the subsequent distribution of food items is not the responsibility of the ICRC" However civilians alleged that from that point onwards over fifty lorries sent each day are checked and taken control of by the LTTE.

Civilians in the area also have complained that while, the governments request is to issue goods worth Rupees. 1500 to them, the LTTE issues goods worth only Rupees 750 to them. They have complained that the rebels take the balance goods to their stores named Seran, Pandian and Solan to be sold to civilians at very high prices. Civilians have accused the LTTE of creating problems by ordering the co-operatives to issue only a litre of kerosene while their entitlement is six litres. It is reported that the LTTE uses most of the goods sent to uncleared areas for the benefit of their fighters and their families.

The minister in charge of North/East Rehabilitation Douglas Devananda was not available for comment . However , a senior government official in Colombo said "Our government is the only government in the world that provides food items to people living under enemy control. It is sad what the LTTE is doing with them."
Published: Tue Oct 24 12:17:36 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka Private Sector Urges New Steps To Boost Growth
Yahoo Asia, Tuesday, October 24 2:27 PM SGT . Sri Lanka's business organizations have urged the new coalition government to adopt several recommendations in the fiscal 2001 budget in a bid to boost private-sector growth, according to a proposal Tuesday.The recommendations were made in the proposal presented to President Chandrika Kumaratunga by major trade and business organizations over the weekend. Sri Lanka's budget proposals are usually presented in Parliament in November. However, no dates have been made public yet by Kumaratunga's coalition government, which announced its ministerial Cabinet last week. The report called on the government to revamp labor laws and review labor policies to allow for greater flexibility for employers. Current laws makes it difficult for employers to fire employees. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 02:36:27 EDT 2000

Journalists protest in Vavuniya
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 12.10 p.m. SLT Tuesday October 24. The Journalists Association in Vavuniya today staged a protest against the killing of BBC correspondent Nimalarajan in Jaffna last week. The Vavuniya correspondents have written a letter to President Chandrika Kumaratunge demanding that a full and impartial inquiry be held into the murder of the Jaffna based reporter. The journalists have further reiterated to the Head of State that she pledge to ensure that the press are allowed a freedom of expression and speech.
Published: Tue Oct 24 02:22:55 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka's opposition scouts support over constitutional reform, Oct 24 2000 18:16 IST. COLOMBO, Oct 24 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's main opposition began talks Tuesday with other parties in a bid to drum up support to pressure the shaky ruling coalition to implement radical constitutional reforms. The opposition United National Party (UNP) issued what it called a "common program for good and clean governance" and asked for support from the ruling People's Alliance and well as other opposition parties. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 09:31:13 EDT 2000
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Lankan opposition issues ultimatum to govt  - India Abroad

Sri Lanka Doctor Fears Hand, Foot And Mouth Epidemic
Yahoo, October 24. COLOMBO (Reuters) - Some 150 Sri Lankan children have contracted hand, foot and mouth disease and doctors said on Saturday quick action was needed to prevent an epidemic. ``This could reach epidemic proportions if speedy action is not taken by the health ministry,'' Dr. Dimuthu Weerasooriya, of the Lady Ridgeway children's hospital in Colombo, told Reuters. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 22:44:35 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka probes suicide bombing, chopper wreckage found, Oct 24 2000 18:40 IST. COLOMBO, Oct 24 (AFP) - Sri Lanka Tuesday began probing serious security lapses that led to a massive suicide bombing of a key naval base, as divers salvaged the wreckage of a helicopter shot down by Tiger rebels. The authorities were investigating Monday's bombing against the Trincomalee naval facility, which was considered to be one of the most tightly-guarded military bases, to identify where the lapses occurred, officials said. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 12:51:13 EDT 2000
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Mi-24 wreckage, bodies found  - The Hindu
Lankan divers recover bodies of copter crew  - Times of India (Breaking News)

More clashes near Sri Lanka port after rebel attack, Tuesday,October24,2000. COLOMBO: Tamil Tiger rebels were still holed up near Sri Lanka's eastern port of Trincomalee after a spectacular suicide attack on the island's largest naval base. "Troops have cordoned off the area and are waiting. There were some clashes early on Tuesday," military spokesman Brigadier Sanath Karunaratne told Reuters. Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) fighters were taking cover in the Marble Beach area, near Trincomalee port, a day after rebel boats packed with explosives rammed and sank a naval transport ship and damaged a gunboat in the harbour. Residents in the area said on Tuesday they heard gunfire and explosions from Marble Beach as government forces and rebels clashed sporadically. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 09:37:05 EDT 2000
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More clashes near Sri Lanka port  - The Hindu NUS

Military seeks 10,000 recruits to help battle Tigers
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 10.05 a.m. SLT Tuesday October 24 . Army Commander Gen. Lionel Balagalle yesterday told reporters that the military would from tomorrow step up a campaign to recruit at least 10,000 more men to Sri Lanka's fighting force to help battle the LTTE. The Army chief reiterated that since the Tigers have intensified its battle with the military the latter required more men to help hold government territory in Sri Lanka's besieged north and east.
Published: Tue Oct 24 02:22:54 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka Shares Open Slightly Dn On Locals Selling
Yahoo Asia, Wednesday, October 25 12:19 PM SGT . Sri Lankan shares opened marginally weaker Wednesday on the back of select local selling in blue-chip stocks, brokers said. But, overall activity is thin and volumes are weak, as most investors prefer to stay on the sidelines amid domestic worries, they added. At 0401 GMT (12:01 EDT), the All Share Index was down 2.0 points at 506.7 points, according to brokers. Among the losers, Aitken Spence & Co. was down 5.50 Sri Lankan rupees ($1=-LKR79.42) at LKR100; John Keells Holdings was LKR0.75 lower at LKR44.25. Hayleys Ltd. shares were unchanged at LKR92.25. More...
Published: Wed Oct 25 02:32:13 EDT 2000

UNP give 69 day deadline to Government
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 9.10 a.m. SLT Tuesday October 24. The United National Party has issued a 69 day deadline to the Government to implement an independent police commission, independent elections secretariat, independent public services commission and judiciary. The main opposition party arrived at this consensus after holding top level meetings with its executive members who met over the last two days to decide whether to cooperate with a government request to help form a national coalition.

The main opposition party's conditions also seek to introduce new media reforms, eradicate the use of criminal defamation laws against the press and to ensure that all government and parliamentary members sign an anti-corruption pledge that would curb the present incidents of bribery and corruption. The UNP will also demand that military activity is de-scaled in the country's north and east and negotiations begin with Tamil separatists rebels to help bring an end to the war.

Among the list of priorities, the UNP has also demanded the seat of premiership for its Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe in the event it decides to help support the government. The UNP maintain it will consider cooperating with the State only if the latter can prove it is sincere in establishing the above. The 69 day deadline has been counted from the day parliament was convened on October 18 following a stormy General Election.

The UNP's deadline coincides with the demand made by the National Unity Alliance who also issued a 100 day deadline to the President asking that similar conditions be met. If not, the NUA has pledged to withdraw its support to the Government.

Meanwhile Karu Jayasuriya was sworn in as the new deputy leader of the UNP while Gamini Atukorale took over as assistant deputy leader UNP.
Published: Tue Oct 24 02:22:54 EDT 2000

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UNP terms for support to Govt.  - The Hindu (International)

24 killed as rebels raid Sri Lanka naval base
Telegraph, UK, Tuesday, 24 October. A FLOTILLA of boats manned by Tamil Tiger rebels launched a suicide attack on Sri Lanka's largest naval base at dawn yesterday, sinking a transport ship, damaging a naval gunboat and leaving 24 dead.Military officials said 18 Tigers and six service personnel were killed. Two sailors aboard the gunboat were killed and 43 wounded in the attack on the Trincomalee naval base, on the east coast of Sri Lanka.No one was aboard the troop transport ship, which was capable of carrying around 400 soldiers. The military spokesman, Brig Sanath Karunaratne, said three of the explosives-laden boats belonging to the Sea Tigers, the separatist rebels' naval wing, were sunk in Trincomalee harbour by naval gunfire. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 04:59:28 EDT 2000
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More clashes near S.Lanka port after rebel attack  - ABC News
Sri Lanka-Civil War  - ABC News
LTTE gunboats storm Sri Lanka's biggest naval base at Trincomalee  - NDTV/MSNBC
13 killed in suicide attack at Trinco  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo

Sri Lanka port attack probe
BBC South Asia, Tuesday, 24 October, 2000, 09:44 GMT 10:44 UK. The attack by Tamil Tiger rebels on Monday on the port of Trincomalee - one of the most tightly-guarded military facilities in the country - destroyed two naval vessels and led to the downing of a helicopter gunship by the rebels. "There would be an investigation not only at the navy's own initiative, but by the defence ministry too," a military source in Colombo said. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 07:36:34 EDT 2000
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Sri Lanka probes suicide bombing, divers recover airmen  -
Sri Lankan divers recover bodies of airmen after base attack  -

Lanka ready to rock Zimbabwe
Times of India (Breaking News), October 24. SHARJAH: After winning both their matches in the Sharjah tri-series Sri Lanka are ready to thrash Zimbabwe on Wednesday. A Lankan win on Wednesday would make it three out of three for the islanders and put them in the Sunday's final. It would also mean Zimbabwe, who have drawn blank from the first three games, would leave India to win just one game out of two to slip into the final. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 09:35:14 EDT 2000
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Cricket: Zimababwe in do-or-die situation  - The Hindu NUS

Local council elections early next year
CDN, Tuesday, 24 October. The Elections Secretariat which has just concluded the Parliamentary General Elections is now busy making preparations for the local council elections to be held early next year. The present term of the local councils is due to expire in March next year and the Elections Secretariat has started initial preparations for the conducting of elections to these councils on the instructions of Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake, said Assistant Commissioner M.Arunthavachelvam yesterday. The present term of the 308 local councils in the country will end on March 19 More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 04:07:43 EDT 2000

Local tea manufacturers to hold hunger strike in Washington
Island, Tuesday, 24 October. Members of the Association for the Protection of National Resources (APNR) said yesterday that they were seeking an appointment with the Prime Minister and officials of the Tea Board before they leave for Washington on Wednesday to launch a hunger strike. The APNR said that despite their continuous attempts to meet with the relevant officials they have been met with a wall of silence. Five members of the association, mainly tea manufacturers are planning to hold a hunger strike in front of the International Monetary Fund and the adjoining building of the World Bank in a final attempt to achieve the justice they failed to achieve here in Sri Lanka. The group has been agitating for the implementation of a Supreme Court order and a Human Rights Commission recommendation to ban the importation of off grade tea to Sri Lanka. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 04:04:40 EDT 2000

DK joins issue with CM
The Hindu (Southern States), Wednesday, October 25, 2000. CHENNAI, OCT. 24. The DK general secretary, Mr. K. Veeramani, today asked why the DMK leader and Chief Minister, Mr. M. Karunanidhi, was fighting shy of including the PMK founder, Dr. S. Ramadoss and the MDMK chief, Mr. Vaiko, along with the Tamils Nationalist Movement leader, Mr.P.Nedumaran and the DK leader in the group of those holding similar views on the LTTE and `Tamil Eelam' issues. ``It is here that Mr. Karunanidhi's political chicanery comes to view'', Mr. Veeramani said, adverting to the PMK and MDMK being part of the DMK-BJP combine, that explains Mr.Karunanidhi's reticence about those two regional parties on the LTTE issue. More...
Published: Tue Oct 24 17:30:55 EDT 2000

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