The Lanka Academic

 
APRIL 6, 2001 EST, USA
 
A NEWSPAPER PUBLISHED BY LACNET
 
VOL. 1, NO. 365

Headline Summary
F R E E      C L A S S I F I E D S
T  O  P      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E
Government to rebuild bodhi viharaya
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 2.25 p.m. SLT Thursday April 5. Premier Rathnasiri Wickremanayake today assured angry Buddhist monks that the demolished wall around the Bodhi Viharaya at Borella will be rebuilt.

Angry crowds began to disperse today after the Premiers assurance was given. Wickremanayake asserted that bulldozers from the Urban Development Authority had already been dispatched to clear up the rubble and reconstruction of the sacred place of worship would begin.

Minister Managala Samaraweera who had ordered the destruction continues to sound defiant as he maintains the wall around the Bodhi Viharaya is illegal and an eyesore. The minister explained in parliament yesterday that a "beautiful fence" would be built around the Viharaya instead. Samaraweera has caused a massive controversy since he took over as the new minister for Urban Development in October last year, vowing to clean Colombo, her suburbs and the outstations of all illegal structures.

Hundreds of illegal shops and homes in Pettah, Maradana and Borella have already been demolished as Samaraweera stood firm and insisted the structures must go.

However, an equal number of illegal structures that have been built on state owned land in and around the city of Colombo will remain, as power and politics continue to play a major role in influencing the actions of the new minister for Urban Development, Mangala Samaraweera. =20

The minister in fact initiated a social war when he began pulling down illegally built structures, constructed by the nation's poorer classes. Three and four story buildings also built illegally by the city's rich and powerful have not been and will probably never be at the receiving end of the Ministers bulldozers.=20

One such building, 'Bally's Club' is owned by Dhamikka Perera and is constructed illegally on land owned by the Urban Development Authority. 'Bally's Club' however will not see a bulldozer tearing down its plush fa=E7ade. =20

The king of dice has strong political links, so much so, that top ranking officials from both the UDA and the Colombo Municipal Council admit that "Bally's Club is an exception to the rule." Afraid to even be named, high-ranking officers at the CMC and the UDA begged that they remain anonymous as they furtively whispered that Dhamikka Perera is too influential a personality for these officers to lock horns with. Pavement hawkers however, have no such luck or political patronage. =20

Sweating on the streets to earn a paltry few rupees a day, they hardly have the resources to throw their money on dice, or wine and dine the city's political elite. Some of them are victims of these very politicians and have in fact paid crooked politicos for a plot on the city's pavement to hawk their goods.=20

Unlike the powerful, whom have also broken the law in the same if not greater manner, these men and women are forced to watch in horror and dismay as their hopes and dreams tumble down. They watch in anger as the new minister arrives on the scene of destruction where their hard-earned belongings are strewn and their dignity as human beings lie battered. Their fury knows no bounds as they see the young minister give a thumbs-up sign to his men, for a job well done and publicly states that his ministry is not obliged to find alternate accommodation or pay compensation of any kind to the unfortunates.=20

Having said that, there is little doubt that Minister Mangala Samaraweera should be commended for his bold initiative. Unlike his predecessor who allowed his henchmen to collect monies and sell state land to the poorer classes, monies he allegedly used later to help finance his election campaign, Samaraweera has no such obligations to the street hawkers. While there is a human angle to the sorry tale, Samaraweera at least has risen to a challenge which none of his predecessors had the courage to do, given their links with various underworld personalities and other miscreants of society. The new minister is determined to clean up the streets of Colombo in order that the city can be developed according to plan and also maintain an environmentally friendly atmosphere.

Officers from the 'Unauthorized Monitoring Unit' will not divulge the names of 'bigwigs' who have broken the law and illegally constructed multi storied buildings, on state property. Senior officers from the CMC, UDA and the NHDA sit on this committee and appear quite happy to discuss the failure of pavement hawkers to comply with state law. They are guarded and secretive however when it comes to naming businessmen and casino owners who have the support of both politicians and top cops to flout the law. =20

Pavement hawkers in Punchi Borella who more than a month ago had their makeshit 'Kades' broken, took part in yesterday's demonstration against the demolishment of the 'Bodhi Viharaya' which they continue to worship at. =20
Published: Thu Apr 5 06:22:23 EDT 2001

Related News Stories
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Lankans stage protest over razing of shrine in Colombo  - Gulf-News
·
Lanka govt. promises to rebuild demolished Buddhist temple  - India Abroad

No Connection Fee! Calls to Sri Lanka, only 39c/m!
ASK ERIK SOLHEIM!
--Photo: Aftenposten--
The Lanka Academic is delighted to announce its next guest in its series of Q & A sessions: Mr. Erik Solheim, the special facilitator between the government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

Mr. Solheim has had extensive discussions with government leaders including President Kumaratunge as well as the leaders of political parties and entities spanning the spectrum of political views in Sri Lanka. He has also visited the LTTE leader Pirbhakaran during a recent visit to the Vanni and also has had discussions with the LTTE representative in London Mr. Anton Balasingham.

Mr. Solheim will answer your questions within the parameters of his present assignment. Submit your questions for Mr. Solheim between April 2-30, 2001, and check answers here.

O  T  H  E  R      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E  S
Curbs on movement of items into Vanni lifted
The Hindu (International), Friday, April 06, 2001. In a development that holds significance for the ongoing peace process, the Sri Lankan Government has lifted restrictions on a range of items that can be carried across by civilians into LTTE- held areas. The ban on these items was lifted last month without any fanfare, and may be part of pre-talks confidence building measures that were being discussed between the Government and the LTTE with the assistance of Norway, the official facilitator of the ongoing peace process. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 21:47:53 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Heroin seized: four held
The Hindu (Southern States), Friday, April 06, 2001. CHENNAI, APRIL 5. Four persons, including a Sri Lankan Tamil, were arrested and three vehicles seized by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) South Zone unit following the seizure of 15 kg of high grade heroin, worth Rs. 60 lakhs. Police identified the arrested persons as Kasilingam, a Sri Lankan Tamil, Kamalakannan, Anbazhagan and Gheesulal. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 21:49:03 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Customs officer killing : one arrested
Island, 06 April 2001. Police conducting investigations into the killing of Assistant Superintendent of Customs, Sujith Prasanna has arrested a underworld member yesterday (05) at Dehiwela police sources said. The suspect is being questioned at length. No further details are available due to the confidential nature of the investigations. But police suspect that this could be a contract killing. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 22:36:49 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lankan Marxists mark anniversary amid government protest
123India.com, Apr 05 2001 19:17 IST. Sri Lanka's main Marxist party, which has twice tried to seize power, marked the 30th anniversary of its first armed insurrection Thursday amid a counter offensive by the government. The Marxist JVP, or People's Liberation Front, organised a lecture at an open air stadium here while across the street, the government arranged an exhibition remembering those it said the JVP had killed. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 12:12:15 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka extends emergency, opposition votes against move
123India.com, Apr 05 2001 19:08 IST. Sri Lanka Thursday extended a state of emergency by one month, but the main opposition which had tacitly supported the government in the past, voted against the move in parliament. The emergency rule was extended by a further month, with 89 members of parliament voting against and 110 for the resolution. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 13:16:30 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka's top foreign investment chief faces assets probe
123India.com, Apr 05 2001 09:34 IST. Sri Lanka's top foreign investment chief, already embroiled in a bribery probe, is to face an investigation of his assets, court officials here said Thursday. Thilan Wijesinghe, the head of the Board of Investment (BOI), resigned last week after the independent commission to probe bribery and corruption initiated proceedings against him. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 09:14:44 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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Probe against top Sri Lankan official  - BBC South Asia

Two Sri Lankans Found dead in England
Saroj Pathirana in London, Thursday 05/04/01 1815 GMT. A mother and a son of Sri Lankan origin were found dead in their home in Ascot in Windsor (England) last night. The thirteen year old and his forty five year old mother were discovered by their father. The boy was a student of Eton College where Prince william, son of the late Princes of Wales, Diana and Prince Charles, also attends. Thames Valley police say that there is evidence to suggest that they took their lives and died of a massive drug overdose. But a toxicology test by home office pathologist is expected later to determine the exact cause of death.
Published: Thu Apr 5 14:24:30 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lankan Airlines to launch students club in America
Bandula Jayasekara in New York, NY Time 1.00 a.m Thursday 5th April. Sri Lankan Airlines is planning to launch a students club in America to assist Sri Lankan students residing in the United States , attending colleges, campuses and other higher education institutes, newly appointed Country Representative for Sri Lankan airlines in the USA, Rohan Siriwardane told the ?Lanka Academic? today. The airline through the students club hopes to assist students in need at times of crisis such as family bereavement back home. The club will also encourage US nationals to visit and experience the Sri Lankan way of life. Siriwardane said ? The club would primarily act as an informal meeting place for students. In order to facilitate it an interactive web site would be launched by the airline. Members of the students club would have added benefits such as regular updates from Sri Lanka, special promotional information on airfares to and from Sri Lanka. This would also extend to parents coming over to America for graduation ceremonies and other activity directly related to the student curriculum?

Siriwardane added that the US embassy sources in Colombo have revealed that at least 7000 Sri Lankan students are in the United States.
Published: Thu Apr 5 13:08:40 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Leading US artistic director pays tribute to Lankan Village theatre
Bandula Jayasekara in New York, NY Time 1.45 p.m Thursday 5th April. A leading American artistic director Marc Masterson of the Actors Theatre of Louisville paid a glowing tribute to Sri Lankan village theatre. He said that Sri Lankan village theatre inspired him a great deal even though he had seen very little of it. Masterson who now leads Americas respected Humana theatre festival told ?The Lanka Academic? ? During a soul searching trip around the world I ended up in Sri Lanka some time ago. Two days to the visit, I was invited to attend a jungle theatre ceremony where all the people gathered in a big group drumming and dancing and performing elaborate mask rituals. The occasion was the blessing of a house in the villages had just built. I stayed six hours at that ceremony, which usually last for three full days. It was a religious ceremony and pure theater. Performance, religion and civic life were part of everyone?s life and all tied together and I thought, ?Now I get it. This is what I do? Marc added that it amazed him how a simple village theatre from a far way island like Sri Lanka could reach out to him, a person who had traveled half away cross the world.
Published: Thu Apr 5 13:54:19 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Swimming pool for Peradeniya University
CDN, 6 April 2001. A swimming pool has been a crying need for the Peradeniya University and this dream will be realised when the new pool constructed at a cost of Rs. 21.1 million will be declared open by the Minister of Sports and Tourism Lakshman Kiriella and the Minister of Science and Technology Prof. Leslie Gunawardena on Sunday, April 8 at 4 p.m. The swimming pool of the Peradeniya University has run through some turbulent weather as the earlier constructed about 15 years ago never saw the light of the day, as a leak was detected when it was filled up with water and soon it became a white elephant and of use to no one. Recently the work on this pool recommenced and it was a pool within a pool as the present swimming pool had been constructed inside the earlier pool which was abandoned. The entire cost of the present swimming pool has been funded by the Ministry of Sports. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 23:27:31 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka looks at aid boost for rebel-held areas
MSNBC, Thursday, April 5 2:38 PM SGT . Sri Lanka is looking at boosting humanitarian aid to rebel-held areas and expects guerrillas fighting for a separate state to stop any acts of sabotage in the run-up to peace talks, state media reported on Thursday. Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar, who expects to announce before the end of the month a date for talks aimed at ending nearly two decades of ethnic war, was quoted as saying the measures would be part of an agreement of understanding. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 12:13:56 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Security forces personnel recover weapons at Point Pedro
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 4.10 p.m. SLT Thursday April 5. Security forces yesterday recovered a large cache of weapons at Point Pedro in Jaffna on information received by a civilian. =20

Troops who recovered the weapons believe they may have been left behind by Soosai, the Sea Tiger who fled Jaffna during Operation Riviresa in 1995. Brigadier Sanath Karunaratne, military spokesman said the weapons had been hidden in a well constructed hideout.
Published: Thu Apr 5 06:22:23 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Buddhist temple in rubbles
Leo de Lile in Colombo. A Sri Lankan Buddhist priest, stands alongside a demolished shrine in Punchi Borella junction in Colombo, Sri Lanka on April 4, 2001. Sri Lanka's Urban Development Authority has been tearing down unauthorized structures in a bid to ease traffic congestion in the capital. Later hundreds of Buddhists staged a protest by the demolished shrine urging the government to re build it.
Published: Wed Apr 4 12:51:50 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Money is the root of all evil in Sri Lankan cricket
yahoo, april 5. Ask any Sri Lankan to name the greatest moment in the country's sporting history and the reply will always be the victory in cricket's 1996 World Cup.Increasingly, however, many Sri Lankans have also begun to see the World Cup triumph as the worst thing that could have happened to the country's cricket administration."The World Cup brought money and money was the killer," Roy Dias, a former test vice captain and coach, said as the latest episode in the cricket board's saga of scandal and strife unfolded. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 17:09:36 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Amnesty Intl Report Custodial Rapes, Torture In Sri Lanka
Yahoo Asia, Thursday, April 5 2:38 PM SGT . In a statement, London-based Amnesty International said two Tamil women, detained by navy and police in northern Mannar on March 19, were allegedly gang-raped by members of Sri Lanka's armed forces. Any security officer found responsible for rape, sexual abuse or other torture, or for encouraging or condoning them, should be brought to justice, said the statement released to the press in Colombo, the national capital. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 09:18:06 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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Sri Lanka probes alleged rape of Tamil detainees  - yahoo

Lanka lashes out for being compared with Taliban
Times of India, 6 April 2001 . The government on Thursday lashed out at critics who compared the demolition of unauthorized structures around a Buddhist shrine with destruction of Buddhist statues by Afghanistan's Taliban militia."There cannot be more absurd suggestion than this on earth," minister for urban development, Mangala Samaraweera, said reacting to reports that compared his action Wednesday with the Taliban militia who destroyed ancient Buddhist statues in Afghanistan last month."The structure around the shrine was being used by drug peddlers and all sorts of criminal elements," Samaraweera said when reached by The Associated Press. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 16:59:22 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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Damaged shrine to be repaired  - BBC South Asia
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Sri Lankan temple to be repaired  - BBC South Asia
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Sri Lankan Govt. defends demolition of Buddhist shrine  - The Hindu (International)

Government ignores Disappearances in Sri Lanka- ALRC
Saroj Pathirana in London, Thursday 05/04/01 1000 GMT. The government has clearly ignored the outstanding issue of large scale disappearances in Sri Lanka, the Hong Kong based Human Rights group Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC)has said. In a written statement submitted to the 57th session of the UNHCR, the ALRC urges that it is the time for the establishment of an international tribunal or similar body to press the matter.

The ALRC statement also recalls of their recommendations to the government in the report published 0n 21 of December 1999. They include:

(a) The Government should establish an independent body with the task of investigating all cases of disappearance which occurred since 1995 and the act of enforced disappearance should be made an independent offence under the criminal law of Sri Lanka.

(b) The Prevention of Terrorism Act and the Emergency Regulations currently in force should be abolished or otherwise brought into line with internationally accepted standards.

(c) Any person deprived of liberty should be held only in an officially recognised place of detention. All unofficial places of detention, in particular those established by paramilitary organisations fighting alongside the Security Forces, such as PLOTE and TELO, should immediately be dissolved.

These recommendations, however, have been completely ignored by the government, the ALRC says. The ALRC also calls for a appointment of a United Nations’ special Rapporteur to investigate all these disappearances, estimated around 60,000 by the non-governmental organisations.
Published: Thu Apr 5 06:09:57 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Female Sri Lankan prisoners need protection
BBC South Asia, Wednesday, 4 April, 2001, 18:47 GMT 19:47 UK . The human rights group, Amnesty International, has urged the Sri Lankan president to uphold measures introduced to safeguard women held in custody by the country's security forces. In a letter to President Chandrika Kumaratunga, Amnesty said measures introduced in 1997 to protect detainees, including women, were being ignored. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 16:42:21 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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Sri Lanka troops getting away with rape: Amnesty  - 123India.com

CBI seeks information on Gandhi killing
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 10.15 a.m. SLT Wednesday April 4. The Criminal Bureau for Investigation has sought the assistance of 23 countries to lend information that will help conclude the investigation into the killing of Rajiv Gandhi.

The CBI has already sought help from the Sri Lankan authorites and are reported to have also sought the assistance of Sweden to question a close confidante of LTTE leader Veluppilai Prabhakaran. Known as KP, the man is domiciled in Sweden and India has requested swedish authorities to assist in tying up the ongoing investigation.

Rajiv Gandhi was killed in May 1989 while campaigning for forthcoming elections in India.
Published: Wed Apr 4 09:29:09 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Lanka, British missions sucked into state politics
TOI, april 2. As Tamil sentiments are stirred ahead of the Tamil Nadu Assembly elections, the local missions of Sri Lanka and Britain find themselves sucked into state politics and becoming venues of protest demonstrations. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 22:35:14 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka Power-Saving Measures Saved 2 GWh-Day - Elec Bd
Yahoo Asia, Thursday, April 5 6:46 PM SGT . Average nationwide consumption was around 20 GWh/day, the official told Dow Jones Newswires, but the rate has now fallen 10% to about 18 GWh/day since the measures came into effect. In February, Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga used emergency regulations to prohibit the drawing of electricity from the national grid for air conditioners, neon signs and flood lights. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 09:41:40 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Demolition of Buddhist temple sparks mass protests in Colombo
Dharisha Bastians in Colombo, 17:10 SLT Wednesday April 04. A massive protest campaign headed by the Buddhist clergy got under way toda y, against the demolition of a Buddhist temple at the Punchi Borella juncti on by the Urban Development Authority in the wee hours of this morning. The Bodiraja Viharaya was demolished under tight security from police and army personnel at 1 AM today. Buddhist monks from around the Colombo area, representatives of Buddhist or ganizations politicians and scores of people are reportedly participating i n the protest. Yellow flags, usually a mark of sorrow for Buddhists have be en hoisted on shops and houses around the area, in support of the protestor s. The crowd is demanding the return of a Buddha statue and the sacred cask et, which were removed from the site following the demolition. Members of t he clergy meanwhile, claim they will remain at the site until authorities c ommence the restoration of the temple. The protests have caused a huge traf fic block in and around the Punchi Borella junction, with police suggesting that motorists take different routes. Sri Lanka was one of the most vociferous protestors of the recent Taliban d estruction of the Bamiyan Buddhas in Afghanistan, even offering to buy the remainder of the Buddhist relics in the country. Angry protestors are accus ing the government of displaying Taliban-style vandalism in the demolition of the temple. The UDA argues that the temple, built in 1922, was an unauth orised structure that had to be brought down as part of it=92s program to m ake Colombo a commercial hub.=20
Published: Wed Apr 4 07:10:26 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
·
Sri Lanka accused of Taliban-style vandalism of temple  - 123India.com
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Violence averted at Anti-demolition protests in Colombo  - Dharisha Bastians in Colombo
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Sri Lanka accused of Taliban-style vandalism  - Yahoo Asia
·
Protest over Sri Lanka temple demolition  - BBC South Asia

Petition in Jaffna high court against missing persons
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 9.10 a.m. SLT Wednesday April 4. For the first time in Jaffna a petition was filed yesterday in the High Court by the parents of two missing persons who had been arrested by the military in Jaffna during 'Operation Rivirasa' in 1995.

The Jaffna High Court judge has ordered the Jaffna Military Commander to sumbit a report on the whereabouts of the two persons by the 26th of this month.

The parents maintain that since their children were taken in by the military in 1995, they have not seen, heard or been informed on their whereabouts.
Published: Wed Apr 4 09:29:08 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Thilan Wijesinghe's Rights plea dismissed
CDN, 5 April 2001. The Supreme Court yesterday dismissed the fundamental rights application filed by Former BoI Chief Thilan Wijesinghe when the counsel for petitioner moved for its withdrawal. The Bench comprised Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva PC and Justices P. R. P. Perera and Dr. (Mrs) Shirani Bandaranayake. At the outset, Deputy Solicitor General Palitha Fernando informed court that in view of the Magistrate's Court proceeding pending against Mr. Wijesinghe, there is no likelihood of him being arrested in connection with the matters under investigation by the Bribery Commission. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 22:26:38 EDT 2001 Back to the top

600 killed in rebel land mines in north Lanka
Times of India, 5 April 2001 . Nearly 600 people have been killed or maimed by land mines laid by Tamil Tiger rebels in the northern Jaffna Peninsula, a military spokesman said on Wednesday.Ninety-nine people were killed in the 15 months since Jan. 2000, while 498 were injured during the same period, Brig. Sanath Karunaratne said at a news conference. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 16:44:38 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
·
Sri Lanka landmine deaths high  - BBC South Asia

Lanka's leftists to mark anniversary with music carnival
India Abroad, April 04, 2001 14:45 Hrs (IST) . SRI Lanka's former ultra-left radicals, who have staged two bloody abortive insurgencies, will mark the 30th anniversary of their uprising with a fun fair and Western musical show, reflecting their transition from militancy to mainstream politics. A native Bob Marley-like singer will belt out pop songs in English at the four-day carnival of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), or People's Liberation Front, at Colombo's Viharamahadevi Park beginning Saturday, a JVP statement said. With 10 members winning seats in the last parliamentary elections in October 2000, the JVP has moved away from its past militancy and become a staunch advocate of democratic means of protest. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 06:53:28 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Lankans upbeat on winning Sharjah Cup
Times of India (Breaking News), 5 April 2001 . A buoyed Sri Lankan team arrived here on Thursday for the Sharjah Triangular Cricket Tournament confident of winning the cup after a morale-boosting win in the one day series against England. The Lankans may well stretch their winning streak as a beleaguered Pakistan without some of its key players will be under pressure to prove themselves after a humiliating one-day series defeat against New Zealand. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 09:17:28 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka Govt To Announce Date - Cabinet Minister
Yahoo India, Tuesday April 3, 3:10 PM. COLOMBO (AP)--The Sri Lankan government said Tuesday it will open peace talks with the Tamil Tiger rebels before the end of April. Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar told Parliament that the government was prepared to begin talks with the rebels, who have been observing a unilateral cease-fire since the beginning of the year. "We will give a full statement with all the details," said Kadirgamar, who refused to elaborate. The rebels' cease-fire was to expire April 24, but they have renewed it several times, saying they wanted to encourage chances for talks with the government to end 17 years of civil war. Norwegian officials have been talking to both sides separately, trying to start the first formal peace discussions in five years. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 04:42:36 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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'Dates for talks with LTTE by April-end'  - The Hindu (International)

Ranatunga blasts Lanka board for match-fixing charge
Times of India (Breaking News), Wednesday, 4 April 2001 . COLOMBO: Former Sri Lanka cricket captain Arjuna Ranatunga on Wednesday formally denied charges of match fixing and accused the national cricket board of attempting to tarnish his image. "I have explained my position about the so-called match-fixing charges, and I have also said that I am ready to face any ICC (International Cricket Council) inquiry to clear my name," Ranatunga, who led Sri Lanka to its 1996 World Cup winning campaign, told the Associated Press. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 05:19:57 EDT 2001 Back to the top
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Ranatunga rejects corruption charges  - BBC South Asia
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Cricket-Financial probe likely for Sri Lanka board  - Yahoo India

Colombo-Moscow intelligence agreement
BBC South Asia, Wednesday, 4 April, 2001, 11:18 GMT 12:18 UK . Sri Lankan and Russian officials have signed an agreement they say is aimed at boosting the exchange of security intelligence. The Sri Lankan Defence Ministry said the agreement was signed during a visit to Colombo by the head of the Russian intelligence service Nikolay Patrushev. He said that under the agreement the two countries would cooperate in their fight against drug trafficking and illegal immigration. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 08:34:17 EDT 2001 Back to the top
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Sri Lanka, Russia In Pact To Cooperate In Crime Control  - Yahoo Asia
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Sri Lanka, Russia in intelligence sharing pact  - 123India.com
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Sri Lanka, Russia to Sign Security Agreement  - Nothern Light

WORLD BANK: Sri Lanka -- Japanese grant for Sri Lanka village self-help learning...
Nothern Light, Wednesday, April 04, 2001 12:14 PM EST . The agreement for a Japanese Social Development Fund Grant of US$750,000 for the Village Self-help Learning Initiative was signed today at the Ministry of Finance and Planning, Colombo by the World Bank and Government of Sri Lanka. Dr. P.B. Jayasundara, Secretary, Finance and Planning, signed the agreement on behalf of the government of Sri Lanka and, Dr. Mariana Todorova, Country Director, Sri Lanka, signed on behalf of the World Bank in the presence of Shoei Takahashi, minister, and Kenji Seiyama, Second Secretary, Economic Cooperation, Embassy of Japan in Sri Lanka. The US$ 750,000 Japanese Social Development Fund Grant will assist in developing an innovative model of community driven development that addresses poverty alleviation among villages in rural Sri Lanka. The model will test participatory planning and implementation at the village level to make decisions and increase their access to resources and services, thus leading to sustainable development. The pilot program has been added to the ongoing World Bank-supported Mahaweli Restructuring and Rehabilitation Project, which aims to reduce poverty among rural groups through improving the productivity of Sri Lanka's vital agriculture sector. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 16:43:35 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Ramnad vigil against infiltration
The Hindu (Southern States), Thursday, April 05, 2001. RAMANATHAPURAM, APRIL 4. The Indian Navy, Coast Guard and the Coastal security wing of this district have been asked to step up vigil in view of the Assembly elections to prevent infiltration of militant cadres from Sri Lanka, Mr. S. N. Seshasai, Superintendent of Police, told reporters here on Wednesday. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 20:39:31 EDT 2001 Back to the top

SRI LANKA PRESS: Japan Gives $750,000 For Devt Proj
Yahoo Asia, Wednesday, April 4 11:12 AM SGT . The government has received a grant worth $750,000 from Japan to fund a community development project in the rural areas, reports the Daily News. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 00:27:54 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Asif Iqbal disassociates himself from CBFS
Yahoo India, April 5, 9:05 PM. Asif Iqbal, chief Co-ordinator of the Sharjah Cricket Organisation (CBFS), Thursday announced his disassociation from the body saying "heavy infiltration of politics in the sports has created an atmosphere about which I feel deeply uncomfortable". "I think the internal politics of Indian cricket infiltrated the Government and the Government became a tool in fulfilling its designs," Iqbal told PTI here. More...
Published: Thu Apr 5 17:00:49 EDT 2001 Back to the top
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Waqar Younis to lead Sharjah-bound Pak squad  - Yahoo India
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Lanka retain squad for Sharjah meet  - Yahoo India
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Sharjah: How bizarre!  - Yahoo India

Sri Lanka Ctrl Bk: Stable Markets Prompted Rate Cuts
Yahoo Asia, Tuesday, April 3 7:02 PM SGT . The bank also said in a statement the adjustments were part of an overall strategy to ease short-term rates, which had been hiked in several steps in recent months to prop up the local currency. A higher-than-expected government borrowing program in 2000, to fund an escalating war between the military and Tamil Tiger rebels in the north, had also pushed interest rates higher. More...
Published: Wed Apr 4 04:22:22 EDT 2001 Back to the top
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Sri Lanka Ctrl Bk:Econ Strong Despite Lower GDP Forecast  - Yahoo Asia

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