The Lanka Academic

VOL. 2, NO. 118

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
Delhi unhappy with Jaffna bombing?
The Hindu (International), 03-08-2001 . By Nirupama Subramanian Within the broad parameters of its commitment to the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka, India appears to be moving away from a hands-off policy on its neighbour in favour of a tough line towards the Kumaratunga Government. The recent indication of this was New Delhi's response to the LTTE attack on the Katunayake air base and the adjoining civilian airport, expressing ``concern and disappointment'' at events and asking the Government and the LTTE to resume talks. This is the first time in at least the last five years that New Delhi has not condemned an act of terrorism in Sri Lanka, opting instead to hold the Government partially responsible for it. Besides the tenor of New Delhi's reactions, there have been other indications that India is exerting more pressure now on the Sri Lankan Government to talk to the LTTE. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 17:40:04 EDT 2001

No Connection Fee! Calls to Sri Lanka, only 39c/m!

Q&A With:
Mr. K. N. Douglas Devananda

We have ended taking questions for our guest at the online Q&A session, Mr. K. N. Douglas Devananda, Sri Lanka's Minister of Development Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of the North and the Minister Tamil Affairs. We will post answers here as soon as we receive them.

Do you have a recommendation for a future guest at our Q&A sessions AND you know how to put us in contact with him/her? If yes, email us.

O  T  H  E  R      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E  S
Would you like a new constitution for Sri Lanka?
The Lanka Academic, August 2, 2001. Dear readers: Let your opinion about the impending referendum in Sri Lanka be known to other viewers of TLA: Would you like a new constitution for Sri Lanka?
  1. YES
  2. NO
  3. Cannot say YES or NO without seeing the new constitution
Cast your vote here.
Published: Thu Aug 2 20:42:47 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka battles war-risk insurance at port after airport attack
Yahoo Asia, Thursday, August 2 8:59 PM SGT . Sri Lanka said Thursday it was in talks with international underwriters and shippers to bring down war insurance slapped on vessels entering the island after a rebel attack against the main airport. The Ports Authority said it was keen to assure insurance companies as well as shipowners that there was no "war-risk" at Colombo's main seaport which is struggling to retain its position as a regional transshipment hub. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 10:25:27 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Christian-Buddhist conflict in Sri Lanka
Virtual New York, Thursday, 2 August 2001 20:43 (ET). War-torn Sri Lanka is now sliding into a religious conflict, Christian and Buddhist sources told United Press International Thursday. "The persecution of Christians is on the increase there," said Terry Madison, president of Open Doors, an organization giving "support for the suffering church worldwide," according to its mission statement. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 22:11:35 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Judgement on referendum set for Aug. 10
TamilNet, August 3. The arguments for and against the cancellation of the referendum were heard by for the third day by the Sri Lanka's Appeal Court Thursday. The court said that judgment will be given on 10 August. Thirteen cases seeking writ of certiorari quashing the Sri Lankan President's order to hold the referendum on the need for a new constitution and writ of prohibition banning the Elections Commissioner from holding it were filed in the Court of Appeal by the United National Party, the Marxist Janata Vimukthi Peramuna, the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation and several Non governmental Organisations, public interest groups and individuals. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 21:44:57 EDT 2001 Back to the top

No call to cancel referendum on Lanka statute
The Hindustan Times, Colombo, August 2 . THE SRI Lankan Justice Minister Batty Weerakoon has denied that there are moves to cancel or postpone the August 21 referendum on the need for a new constitution in the face of widespread opposition to it. “The opposition to the referendum is, in fact, waning. Now both the ruling and opposition parties are deeply involved in campaigning at the grass roots level," Weerakoon said on Thursday. "The opposition parties led by the United National Party first said that they would take the matter to the streets. After the street demonstrations fizzled out, they approached the judiciary. But this too will fail because, as per Article 86 of the constitution, the President can call for a referendum on any question of national importance," he said. HT Correspondent Colombo More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 17:29:35 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka: The Tigers' Tet offensive - An Editorial
Asia Times, August 2. Sri Lanka suspended 11 airmen on Thursday over a breach of security that led to the devastating guerrilla attack last week on the country's only international airport and an adjoining air force base. In the attack, a Tamil Tiger suicide squad destroyed hundreds of millions of dollars in commercial craft and most of the Sri Lankan air force's military aircraft. A high-ranking air force team is still trying to determine how the attackers penetrated the 800-acre complex ringed by barricades, roadblocks, minefields and guarded by more than 1,000 troops. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 14:53:45 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Panel to oversee Lankan airports’ security
indiainfo, August 2. A high-powered Committee has been set up to recommend measures to ensure security at the Bandaranaike international airport and other civilian airports in the wake of the recent terrorist attacks.The committee will be headed by Defence Secretary Chandrananda de Silva, a government spokesman said.In a pre-dawn attack on July 24, the Tamil Tigers had destroyed eight military aircraft and six passenger aircraft at the Air Force base and the adjacent Bandaranailke International airport. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 14:39:29 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sinhalese monk raises Tamil orphans
Asia Times, Thursday, August 2, 2001 13:24 GMT. ATAMBAGASKANDA, Sri Lanka - Atambagaskada, a frontier village just two kilometers from the army's defenses in Sri Lanka's northern Wanni region, is home to 37 people, including six monks. Here, Atambagaskada Kalyanatissa Thero, a 32-year old Sinhalese Buddhist monk, provides shelter, food and care to Tamil children orphaned by the war. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 09:19:45 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Over 700 employees at Sri Lankan Airlines asked to leave
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 4.40 p.m. SLT Thursday August 2. Seven hundred and eleven employees at Sri Lankan Airlines were given twenty four hours notice to clear their desks and leave on Monday July 30, 2001.

The financially embattled national carrier, was dealt a devastating blow on Tuesday July 24, last month, when Tamil Tiger rebels completely destroyed three airbus aircraft and damaged another three. The company is now left with only 6 aircraft to operate to international destinations.

Over 700 staffers who had chosen to take a Voluntary Severance Scheme (VSS) the airline had offered as a cost cutting measure before the attack on its aircraft that fateful Tuesday, expected to resign only at the end of this year.

However, the management at Sri Lankan Airlines, led by its partners from Emirates Airlines, took a lightening decision to get rid off the 711 persons who had accepted the offer, by August 1, 2001, claiming the local airline can save up to Rs. 14 million if these individuals leave now and not later.

The management decision was made three days after the local carrier lost 6 of its aircraft from a fleet of 12, when the LTTE targeted the Bandaranaike International Airport and the Sri Lanka Air Force Base at Katunayake.

The Sri Lankan Airlines management has planned to now offer a second VSS scheme for all its staff including inflight crew, who will be encouraged to take the package and leave. The airline has over 700 members who are part of its cabin crew. Only the airlines 196 pilots and engineers are barred from accepting the scheme.

Sunil Dissanayake, Human Resources Manager at Sri Lankan Airlines told Lacnet that the airline would not be re-trenching staff. "All we are doing is to launch another VSS scheme as part of a business operating decision."

Dissanayake reiterated that the airline is top heavy with employees. He added however Sri Lankan Airlines is forced into making the second offer as a result of what happened on Tuesday July 24, 2001.

172 junior cabin crew members have already been taken out off inflight and told to work on ground until the carrier can pull itself out of the present crisis.

Since the incident on Tuesday July 24, over 170 other cabin crew members have been kicking their heels at base, as the airline struggles to maintain shaky flight schedules with only 6 aircraft.
Published: Thu Aug 2 06:59:01 EDT 2001 Back to the top

JVP to support PA if referendum is called off
TamilNet, August 2. The Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) Thursday said that it was prepared to extend conditional support to the People's Alliance (PA) government for one year, if the PA called off the August 21 referendum. Mr.Tilvin Silva, General Secretary of the JVP told a press conference Thursday morning that they would give a year for the PA government to implement democratic reforms. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 14:48:59 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Fractured Paradise launched in Sri Lanka
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 10. 20 p.m. Thursday 2 August. British photojournalist Paul Harris launched his book Fractured Paradise at the Galle Face hotel this evening. He presented the first copy of his book to Bradman Weerakoon former advisor on International Relations to two Sri Lankan presidents. In his latest book Harris, who is the author of over 30 books on areas of conflict notably the book Cry Bosnia weeps for Lanka, truly describing the island as a fractured paradise now. His pictures are bloody but newsy and tell the world the agony of Lanka. Many of the pictures in his photo book are far removed from those found in the conventional photo books, ranging from the bloody attacks by suicide bombers and war-damaged Jaffna to images from the Eastern province and even election campaigns. Paul Harris is a specialist contributor on insurgency and terrorism for Jane's Intelligence Review. He has made eighteen visits to Sri Lanka before the publication of this book. Speaking at his book launch Harris said that Sri Lanka is facing its sternest test now and is set to face the ultimate test whether it will survive as a sovereign state.
Published: Thu Aug 2 12:22:31 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Prasanna Vithanage to offer compensation to a talented artist
Saroj Pathirana in London, Thursday 02/08/01 1305GMT. Director of the banned Sinhala film, "Pura Handa Kaluwara" (Death on a Full Moon Day) Prasanna Vithanage was delighted with the Supreme Court verdict to release the film for distribution and pay him a compensation. Supreme Court today ordered minister Sarath Amunugama to pay Rs. 50,000 from his own pocket to the director. "I will offer this Rs. 50,000 to any artist who is revealing the reality of war or to anyone who has been persecuted in the process " Mr. Vithanage told BBC’s Sandeshaya to be broadcast at 1515GMT.

" This is not my personal victory. This victory belongs to all Sri Lankan artistes. On the other hand this is a victory against censorship on war which destroys the whole society" he went on. "This judgement shows that revealing the real face of the war is a justifiable act and that the masses have a right to get the true picture"

The state was also ordered to pay Rs.500,000 in compensation. Director Vithanage said he will make use of this compensation to make arrangements for the distribution of international award winning Pura Handa Kaluwara.
Published: Thu Aug 2 09:08:29 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Commission to probe Lanka airport attack
NDTV/MSNBC, Thursday, August 2, 2001 8:31 GMT. Sri Lanka has appointed a three-member Presidential Commission to probe the LTTE's daring attack on the country's only international airport and the military base here on July 24, a government spokesman said. President Chandrika Kumaratunga has named Justice D Jayawickrama, retired President of the Court of Appeal, to head the panel, which will also include retired Air Force Commander Paddy Mendis and a third member who is yet to be named. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 04:27:05 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka lifts ban on anti-war movie
BBC South Asia, Thursday, 2 August, 2001, 11:07 GMT 12:07 UK . Sri Lanka's Supreme Court has lifted a ban on an award-winning film that the state claimed could undermine army morale. A government minister used emergency regulations last year to ban Death on a Full Moon Day on the grounds that its scenes of corruption could hurt troop morale in Sri Lanka's 18-year ethnic war. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 08:21:23 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka ordered to pay damages for ban on anti-war film  -

Sri Lanka working to re-open container terminal
MSNBC, Thursday, 2nd Aug, 14:33 GMT. Sri Lankan port officials said on Thursday they would hire new hands to restore operations at the main container terminal, which has been crippled by union action. About 1,500 workers at the Colombo port's Jaye Container Terminal went on sick leave on Wednesday demanding the scrapping of a new shift system. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 10:29:52 EDT 2001 Back to the top

South Asian diplomats to meet in Colombo after two-month delay, Aug 02 2001 17:44 IST. COLOMBO, Aug 2 (AFP) - A meeting of top South Asian diplomats which was put off in June as a sign of respect for the slain king of Nepal is scheduled to open here next week, Sri Lanka's foreign ministry said Thursday. The foreign secretaries meeting of the seven-member South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) will open on August 9, the ministry said. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 11:24:26 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Snap polls sought to end Sri Lanka political crisis
123India, August 2. An opposition party in Sri Lanka called Thursday for snap parliamentary elections to end the country's political crisis and restore stability. The Marxist JVP, or People's Liberation Front, said it was proposing the opposition jointly petition parliament for an early dissolution and a snap election.According to the constitution the president cannot dissolve the assembly until at least one year after the last general election, or October 10, but parliament can call for an earlier election. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 02:58:43 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Worst crisis since July ‘83 - Ceylon Chamber of Commerce
The Island, 02 August 2001. Consequent to the terrorist attack on the Bandaranaike International Airport at Katunayake and civilian aircraft, which destroyed half the fleet of SriLankan Airlines, the tourism sector in particular and the private sector in general, face the worst crisis since the Black July 1983 communal riots, says Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) Chairman Chandra Jayaratne in a letter to President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga. "This event has the potential to trigger a financial crisis in an economy already strained by the cost of the North-East war, increase in fuel prices and the already acute and growing shortage of electricity," he adds. "We are joined specifically in this appeal by the following Affiliated Associations of the Chamber, with direct interests in the tourism industry; namely Travel Agents Association of Sri Lanka, Tourist Hotels Association of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Association of Inbound Tour Operators," Jayaratne further says. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 04:04:19 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka suspends 11 officers after airport bombings, Aug 02 2001 09:14 IST. Sri Lanka suspended 11 airforce officers responsible for guarding the country's only international airport and the military base for supersonic aircraft after rebel attacks on both, officials said Thursday.The men had earlier this week been transferred out of their posts and the suspension orders were issued Wednesday as two investigations got underway, a defence ministry spokesman said. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 00:18:37 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Heads roll over Sri Lanka airport attack  - MSNBC

(UTHR(J)) establishes it's own website - Press Release
The Lanka Academic, August 2. The Lanka Academic is pleased to announce the new website established by the University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) (UTHR(J))

Dear friends:

The University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) (UTHR(J)) was formed in 1988 at the University of Jaffna, as part of the national organisation University Teachers for Human Rights. Its public activities as a constituent part of university life came to a standstill following the murder of Dr. Rajani Thiranagama, a key founding member, on 21st September 1989. During the course of 1990 the others who identified openly with the UTHR(J) were forced to leave Jaffna. It continues to function as an organisation upholding the founding spirit of the UTHR(J) with it original aims:

To challenge the external and internal terror engulfing the Tamil community as a whole through making the perpetrators accountable, and to create space for humanising the social & political spheres relating to the life of our community.

So far it has published 13 reports, 12 special reports, 25 bulletins and 3 briefings. Most of these materials are now accessible at the website UTHR

The site is in the preliminary stage and we hope to improve it to have additional materials related to human rights and ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka.

The UTHR(J) is not at present functioning in the University of Jaffna in the manner it did in its early life for reasons well understood.

Please see whether you could give a link to our site.

Thanking you,
Published: Thu Aug 2 01:37:56 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Fifty percent of Sri Lankan Airlines staff to lose jobs- SLFP Union
Saroj Pathirana in London, Wednesday 01/08/01 1720GMT. Nearly fifty percent of Sri Lankan Airlines (SLAir) staff will loose their jobs under an Accelerated Voluntary Retirement Scheme, a trade union leader said. The management of SLAir expect the staff to be "volunteered" to leave the jobs, chairman of the Sri Lanka Nidahas Sevaka Sangamaya’s airport branch Jayaraj Palihawadana told The Lanka Academic.

The airline had also launched a scheme to shed further jobs of the flight crews. According to the Country Manager for SriLanka and the Maldives, Chandana Silva, most of the crew members including the pilots who will loose the jobs under the new scheme would be non-Sri Lankan nationals. Some of the support staff working for foreign cargo and passenger airlines will also be made redundant due to these airlines suspending the flights as a result of the high cost of insurance premiums on flights to Sri Lanka, Mr. Silva told the BBC’s Sandeshaya. There is going to be a increase in the ticket prices by ten percent to cover the high costs.

SLAir is to transfer its operational hubs to Singapore and Dubai, where the main partner Emirates Airlines operates, Mr. Silva admitted. Union leaders in Colombo are suspicious whether this is another move towards full privatisation of SLAir.
Published: Wed Aug 1 13:20:28 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Right of Reply. A letter from Emirates Airlines with referance to "STRANDED IN DUBAI AND RIPPED BY EMIRATES "
The Lanka Academic, August 1. With regard to the report in the Lanka Academic, Emirates wishes to state that the passengers who were left stranded in Dubai were not Emirates passengers.

While we sympathise with them, these passengers had been flown into Dubai by other carriers and were their responsibility.

All Emirates passengers who arrived in Dubai and could not fly to Colombo, were taken care of by Emirates until services resumed to Colombo.

Kendall Hopman CEO VYA Public Relations (Pvt) Ltd. 3-3A De Vos Avenue, Colombo 4.
Published: Thu Aug 2 01:51:09 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Tamils given a place to call home
Asia Times , August 1. The first batch of 212 Tamil families, consisting of 1,415 men, women and children, has been settled in new homes in northern Sri Lanka under a government project to relocate people displaced two decades of civil war. It costs the government 150,000 rupees (US$1,700) to relocate each family, mainly in the Tharanikulam, Sundarapuram and Maravankulam districts in the Vavuniya division. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 00:11:48 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Crippling insurance surcharge deals blow to Sri Lanka air services
Gulf-News, August 1. Gulf airlines may lose close to Dh12.5 million a week as a result of an insurance surcharge of up to Dh422,050 ($115,000) per flight to Sri Lanka's Sirimavo Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo, industry sources said yesterday.The six GCC carriers - Saudi Arabian, Kuwait Airways, Gulf Air, Qatar Airways, Oman Air and Emirates - together with SriLankan Airlines, currently have a total of 30 flights to Colombo every week.SriLankan is 40 per cent owned by Emirates. The Dubai carrier also has management control. Analysts said the two options available would be to either raise fares or reshuffle destinations, or both. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 00:08:44 EDT 2001 Back to the top

FEER(8/9): Editorial - Smugness And The Sri Lanka Airport Attack
Yahoo Singapore, August 1. THE ATTACK on Sri Lanka's only international airport is instructive of both the danger that arises from smugness and of how misguided are the foreign supporters of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. The airport and its adjoining airbase were supposedly highly secure. The road between Colombo and the airport is lined with military checkpoints, and there's often a queue at the airport entrance as each vehicle is searched and its undercarriage examined. And not only do they X-ray bags at this airport, but the contents of hand luggage are poked at with a stick, then each bag is signed off with an old-fashioned chalk mark. So how did the Tigers penetrate this security, even possibly picnicking nearby before their strike? More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 00:05:01 EDT 2001 Back to the top

India beat New Zealand by seven wickets
Yahoo India, Thursday August 2, 2:45 PM. COLOMBO (Reuters) - India beat New Zealand by seven wickets on Thursday in the last round-robin one-day match of a traingular tournament also involving Sri Lanka. Scores: Sri Lanka 264-7 in 50 overs (Nathan Astle 108, Stephen Fleming 66; Ashish Nehra 3-30); India 267-3 in 45.4 overs (Virender Sehwag 100, Saurav Ganguly 64, Rahul Dravid 57 not out). More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 08:23:56 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Ganguly fined for verbal outburst  - Yahoo India
Cricket-New Zealand 264-7 in 50 overs against India  - Yahoo India

Cricket-Tendulkar included in squad for Sri Lanka tests
Yahoo India, 02 August 2001. Injured batsman Sachin Tendulkar was named in the Indian squad on Thursday for a test series in Sri Lanka starting later this month. Tendulkar is recovering from a hairline fracture in his right foot and his availability for the series will be known on August 10 after he undergoes a bone scan. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 06:14:38 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Eleven Tamil parties to support "No" campaign
Saroj Pathirana in London, Wednesday 01/08/01 1650GMT. Eleven Tamil parties today warned President Chandrika Kumaratunga that they will support the No campaign for August 21 referendum unless she withdraws the referendum and reconvene the prorogued parliament. "The government say that they are going to introduce a new constitution with a solution to the ethnic problem. But the President does not say what the solution is" P.Chandrasekaran, MP, leader of the Up Country Peoples’ Front (UCPF), told BBC’s Sandeshaya. Mr. Chandrasekaran said the President herself cannot decide the country’s future and she should at least consult the parliament.

Eleven parties, including Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF), All Ceylon Tamil Congress (ACTC) and UCPF also decided to launch a protest to reconvene the parliament in a meeting held in Colombo.
Published: Wed Aug 1 12:54:39 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Related News Stories
Sri Lanka Tamils reject referendum on constitution  - Yahoo Asia

Maldives says Sri Lanka attack won't hurt tourism
MSNBC, Thursday, 2nd Aug 14:35 GMT. The Maldives expects to reach its target of 500,000 tourists this year despite the interruption of flights from Sri Lanka following the rebel attack on Colombo's international airport last week, officials said on Thursday. While there have been some cancellations, arrivals were expected to increase later in the year as more charter and scheduled flights begin to operate from Europe, they said. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 10:31:11 EDT 2001 Back to the top

TULF politico says Tamil politicians who believe in the LTTE should get out - CORRECTION
The Lanka Academic, August. We at Lanka Academic hereby retract the story that appeared under the above heading yesterday. Our reporter has indicated that the quote attributed to Mr.Thurairajasingham was incorrectly translated from Tamil to English during the writeup of the story. The correct version should be as follows; "Some politicians who are using the LTTEs name and getting political benefit - they are not the representatives of the LTTE. The LTTE is the sole representative of themselves," furthermore He stated that the constitution move taken by the Tamil parties is almost over, "therefore Tamil parties have created a vacuum in the Tamil political arena. These Tamil parties should make way for the LTTEs political wing,"

We at Lanka Academic deeply regret this error and wish to apologize to Mr.Thurairajasingham for any inconvinience caused by this report.

Published: Wed Aug 1 12:03:30 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Chandrika ready to quit after reforms
indiainfo, August 1. Taking on the opposition United National Party (UNP)'s accusations that she was clinging on to office, Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga has said she was willing to give up her executive powers after implementation of the new Constitution.Addressing a gathering of Buddhist prelates at the Presidential Palace on July 31, Kumaratunga said, ''The Opposition UNP backed out from supporting the Constitutional reform process alleging that I was clinching on to the Executive Presidency till the end of my second term. I am more than willing to surrender the Executive Presidency for the sake of resolving the country's burning problems.'' More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 12:28:34 EDT 2001 Back to the top

SriLankan Airlines axes over 1,500 jobs
BBC South Asia, Wednesday, 1 August, 2001, 15:20 GMT 16:20 UK. Sri Lanka's national carrier, SriLankan Airlines, has decided to shed more than 1,500 jobs following the loss of half its fleet in last week's devastating Tamil Tiger attack on Colombo airport. The job losses come in the wake of sharply increased air fares, which rose after the attack to meet high-risk insurance cover for all aircraft flying to Sri Lanka. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 12:34:35 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Aug. 1 (21 :51) Sri Lanka's national air carrier steps up retrenchment - COLOMBO  - Kyodo News
Sri Lanka carrier to shed 1,000 jobs after Tamil attack  -

Sri Lanka Telecom/Fitch Lanka -3: Cash Flows Stable
Yahoo Singapore, 02 August 2001. Fitch Ratings Lanka Ltd. Thursday said it is maintaining its AA+ rating on Sri Lanka Telecom's five-year debentures. Fitch Lanka, which put the ratings on ratings watch in March, said in a statement: "Continued rating watch or a rating action is not deemed necessary at this stage." More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 06:20:04 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka/Ctrl Bk/Rates/Inflation -3: Gave Prior Signal
Yahoo Singapore, Thursday August 2, 12:12 PM . COLOMBO (Dow Jones)--The one-percentage-point cut in the overnight repurchase rate and reverse repurchase rate Thursday follows a recent drop in point-to-point inflation, a senior official at Sri Lanka's central bank said. "The decline in point-to-point inflation advocates an interest rate cut. We had indicated that we will take necessary steps (on rates) according to inflation," D.S. Wijesinghe, additional director of the bank's economic research department, told Dow Jones Newswires. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 04:42:00 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
WRAP: Sri Lanka Rate Cut/Economy -2: Politics Volatile  - Yahoo Singapore

Sri Lanka president to hold talks on travel crisis
MSNBC, Wednesday, 1st August, 12:21 GMT. COLOMBO, Aug. 1 — Representatives of Sri Lanka's beleaguered travel and tourism industries were due to hold crisis talks with the country's president on Wednesday as shockwaves spread from a devastating rebel airport raid last week. Both industries are bracing for deep recession after Tamil Tiger rebels wreaked havoc at the country's only international airport, bringing travel warnings from major tourist markets and a massive insurance surcharge on airlines flying to Colombo. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 08:17:33 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka tightens security at its international airport after Tamil rebel attack
MSNBC, August 1. The government said Wednesday it has tightened security at the island nation's only international airport to prevent future attacks after Tamil rebels overran it and destroyed 11 airplanes.Defense Secretary Chandrananda de Silva said in a statement that the Colombo airport's perimeter security had been strengthened and that two military strike groups would be kept in readiness to block illegal entry. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 12:25:17 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
High level committee to ensure airport security  - Daily News

Colombo sea port at a standstill
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 4 p.m. SLT Wednesday august 1. The Colombo sea port is at a virtual standstill after hundreds of dock workers went on strike today protesting against changes to a three shift work schedule.

While negotiations are underway to reach a compromise with port officials, containers cannot be unloaded from ships and almost the entire dock operations are at a halt.
Published: Wed Aug 1 06:05:16 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Related News Stories
Port declared Essential Service  - daily News
Strike grips Sri Lanka port  -

Tri-Series: Do or die for India today
Yahoo India, 02 August 2001. It is not impossible. But it does seem improbable," Navjot Singh Sidhu said about India's chances of qualifying for the final after three consecutive losses in the Coca-Cola triangular series. The Indian team has taken up the challenge. With their backs to the wall, needing to win three matches in a row to qualify for the final, India pulled off two back-to-back victories - the second being an inspired comeback after a precarious 38 for 4 against Sri Lanka yesterday. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 03:20:14 EDT 2001 Back to the top

10 killed in Sri Lankan fighting
Press Trust of India, Wednesday, August 01, 2001. Sri Lankan troops killed four LTTE rebels in northern Sri Lanka, while the tigers shot dead five home guards in east, the military said Wednesday. Troops activated a claymore mine when they came under LTTE attack at Muhamalai in the Jaffna peninsula in the north yesterday killing four LTTE men and injuring three, a military statement said. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 09:14:54 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Fresh fighting kills eight rebels in Sri Lanka  -
Military say they killed four Tigers in claymore mine blast  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo

AI will single out Sri Lanka for human rights abuses
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 12 p.m. SLT Wednesday August 1. Amnesty International says that Sri Lanka together with Zimbabwe, and Malaysia will be singled out at a meeting of commonwealth heads in Brisbane, Australia this month as being gross violators of human rights abuse.

AI maintains that in Sri Lanka both the Government and the LTTE are guilty of human rights abuses.
Published: Wed Aug 1 03:38:47 EDT 2001 Back to the top

SLMC leader says prorogation must be cancelled
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 11.10 a.m. SLT Wednesday August 1. Rauf Hakeem, Leader for the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress says that the prorogation of Parliament must be cancelled before the referendum is held. Hakeem said that if not, the country will witness widespread violence both in the South and the East.

The SLMC Leader pointed out that since the country is facing a grave crisis situation, it is essential to reconvene Parliament. Uniting to form a national government he said is the need of the hour.

President Chandrika Kumaratunge meanwhile has refused to comply. She reportedly told a gathering of diplomats on Tuesday that she would not reconvene Parliament and is determined to change the present constitution to one that provides a fair majority to the ruling party. The president has also reiterated that she will consult with foreign constitutional makers from the US, UK and France in order to get the best possible advice on constitution making.
Published: Wed Aug 1 03:38:46 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Lanka axes 3 flights to India
The Pioneer, Wednesday, 1st Aug 15:23 GMT. Sri Lankan airlines reeling after Tamil Tiger rebels blasted half its fleet, has axed three Indian destinations from its flight schedule and hiked airfares to meet increased insurance charges. The national carrier has stopped flying to Tiruchirapalli, Mumbai and New Delhi which are among 12 cities being taken off SriLankan Airlines network, officials said. The other cities are Karachi, Dhaka, Abu Dhabi, Beirut, Sydney, Paris, Berlin, Milan and Stockholm. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 11:20:27 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
SriLankan Airlines Suspends Routes  - Nothern Light

Man tries to get rid of 'unfaithful' wife for Rs 2!
newindpress, 01 August 2001. A Sri Lanka man tried to get rid of his unfaithful wife by transferring her to her lover and paying Rs 2 in state taxes to give the transaction legal validity, a newspaper reported on Wednesday.The man got his wife's lover to sign a transfer document complete with a two rupee stamp only to find that police in the central town of Badulla were not willing to enforce the deal, the independent Daily Mirror said."Police turned them away saying the law had no provision for such transfers," said the Mirror, adding it was still unclear which couple "would live happily thereafter". More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 06:11:39 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Anunayake Thero ‘shocked’ to read of his appointment
Island, 01 August 2001. The Ven. Ambanwelle Sri Pagnasekere Anunayake Thero of Malwatte chapter who has been named chairman of the Buddha Sasana Commission appointed by President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga has written to her that he was shocked and amazed to read in a newspaper of his being appointed the head of such a commission. The prelate has told the President that he was not informed or consulted even by telephone prior to such an appointment. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 08:37:05 EDT 2001 Back to the top

India wins by 46 runs at Colombo
NDTV/MSNBC, Wednesday, August 1, 2001 . India has won the eighth Coca-Cola tri-series one-day international against Sri Lanka at Colombo by 46 runs. The Indians now have a better shot at gaining the second spot for the finals on August 5. The hosts are already assured of a place, while India and New Zealand still need to battle it out in tomorrow's match. In reply to the target of 228 runs, the Lankan beginning was as disastrous as India's, as they lost Romesh Kaluwitharana (0) and then Marvan Atapattu (1) in quick succession. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 08:14:00 EDT 2001 Back to the top
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Tendulkar to be included  - Yahoo India
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Cricket-India 227-8 in 50 overs against Sri Lanka  - Yahoo India

CT scanner lies unused for two years
Island, 01 August 2001. A CT scanner brought down at a cost of several millions for the Badulla General Hospital is sitting in it’s X’ray unit, unused. According to a hospital source the machine is not being used because of the lack of a part of the equipment that goes with the machinery. According to Medical sources the machine was brought two years ago but it has not been used because of the lack of staff. Another source who was formally attached to the hospital claimed that the machine has been out of order for some time. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 08:38:59 EDT 2001 Back to the top

INTERVIEW: Sri Lanka People's Bk On Track To Recover '01
Yahoo Singapore, Wednesday August 1, 6:27 PM. COLOMBO (Dow Jones)--People's Bank, the smaller of Sri Lanka's two state banks, is on track for recovery in 2001, after hefty provisioning for nonperforming loans put it in the red in the past two years, its chairman said Wednesday. "This year, our strategic plan is to make a net profit. Judging from the first six months' performance, we are on track and have even outperformed the budget," Mano Tittawella told Dow Jones Newswires in an interview. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 07:20:09 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lankan President Prepared to Give up Executive Presidency
People's Daily, Wednesday, August 01, 2001, updated at 13:21(. Sri Lanka n President Chandrika Kumaratunga said on Tuesday she was ready to give up the Executive Presidency as soon as the new constitution was adopted, the state-run Daily News reported on Wednesday. Kumaratunga who was addressing a gathering of influential Buddhist monks explained the need for the new constitution and added that it would help end the 18-year ethnic war with the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels. "I have offered to surrender the executive powers with immediate effect with the implementation of the new constitution but the UNP (United National Party) is still unwilling to support the process of constitutional reforms, " she said. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 04:30:34 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka to Adopt Democratic Strategy to Pass New Constitution: President
People's Daily, Tuesday, July 31, 2001, updated at 22:37(GMT+. Sri Lanka n President Chandrika Kumaratunga said on Monday night that she will adopt a democratic and legally acceptable strategy to pass the new proposed constitution in the event of not securing the required two-third majority in Parliament. The Presidential Secretariat said in a statement on Monday that Kumaratunga told Colombo-based diplomats the views of constitutional experts in Britain, the United States and France had been obtained on the introduction of the new constitution and the possibility of enacting it in a legally and morally acceptable manner. She said that no other government of the country had been sincere in its efforts to resolve the ethnic issue which has plagued the country for 18 years. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 03:38:28 EDT 2001 Back to the top

S.Lankan puts in his two cents' worth to abandon wife
MSNBC, Wednesday, August 1 8:57 GMT. COLOMBO, Aug. 1 — A Sri Lanka man tried to get rid of his unfaithful wife by transferring her to her lover and paying two rupees (two U.S. cents) in state taxes to give the transaction legal validity, a newspaper reported on Wednesday. The man got his wife's lover to sign a transfer document complete with a two rupee stamp only to find that police in the central town of Badulla were not willing to enforce the deal, the independent Daily Mirror said. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 04:53:15 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Lankan army gears up for offensive against LTTE
NDTV/MSNBC, Thursday, August 2, 2001 (Colombo). The Sri Lankan army is gearing up for another offensive against the LTTE. Eighteen-year-old Sinhalese recruits of the Sri Lankan army are undergoing rigorous military training in an army base camp for this purpose. The Sri Lankan army has been suffering humiliating setbacks on its offensives against the Tamil tigers. In its last operation, Agni Keela in April this year, the army lost nearly 500 of its soldiers in a span of two days. Last week the LTTE struck at the heart of Sri Lanka's air power in Colombo. The army now agrees that the rebels have adopted new strategies of controlling people rather than gaining in territorial strength. Brig Sanath Karunathayke, Defence Spokesperson, informed, "The ground has significant tactical advantages towards huge operations. None of the parties would try to hold the ground but certainly we have to hold the population." The army has to adopt new techniques to combat the lethal attacks of the young motivated suicide squads who are excellent in intelligence gathering. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 17:33:49 EDT 2001 Back to the top

India pick injured Tendulkar, veteran Prasad for Sri Lanka Tests
Yahoo Asia, Thursday, August 2 7:33 PM SGT . India's cricket selectors on Thursday named injured superstar Sachin Tendulkar and veteran seamer Venkatesh Prasad in a 16-man squad for the upcoming Test series in Sri Lanka. More...
Published: Thu Aug 2 08:23:00 EDT 2001 Back to the top

‘Can this man save England?’
Yahoo India, Wednesday August 1, 11:50 AM. LONDON: The appointment of Rodney Marsh as head honcho of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) Cricket Academy is in the nature of a coup, given the not-so-friendly cricket rivalry between England and Australia and the fact that Marsh has done a remarkable job during his eight-year tenure as chief of the Australian Cricket Academy in Adelaide. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 04:55:15 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka Shrs Flat Early; Foreign Buying In John Keells
Yahoo Singapore, Wednesday August 1, 12:45 PM . COLOMBO (Dow Jones)--Sri Lanka's shares are flat early Wednesday, but foreign buying in conglomerate John Keells Holdings has helped lift volume, brokers said. At 0425 GMT (12:25 a.m. EDT), the All Share Index was down 0.05 point, or 0.01%, at 418.74, according to provisional data from brokers. The Milanka Price Index, which tracks the most liquid and highly capitalized stocks, was up 1.35 point, or 0.2%, at 624.10. More...
Published: Wed Aug 1 04:35:48 EDT 2001 Back to the top

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