The Lanka Academic

 
AUGUST 6, 2001 EST, USA
 
A NEWSPAPER PUBLISHED BY LACNET
 
VOL. 2, NO. 122

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
Opposition sceptical about Chandrika offer
Gulf-News, august 6. Sri Lanka's main opposition party are sceptical about offers made by the ruling People's Alliance about the formation of a national government to avert the current political impasse in the country.Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has confirmed that the PA leaders had proposed the formation of a government of national unity but declared he was sceptical of their bona fides."We are aware President Kumaratunga had told the Cabinet she cannot form a government with the UNP or with myself," Wickremesinghe was quoted as saying. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 23:07:18 EDT 2001


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Sri Lanka escalates air attacks on Tamil Tigers
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 20:42 IST. COLOMBO, Aug 6 (AFP) - Sri Lankan air force jets pounded suspected Tamil Tiger targets in the island's north Monday as part of stepped up aerial strikes, the defence ministry said. Supersonic Kfir jets attacked a command post of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) at Pallai in the Jaffna peninsula, ministry spokesman Sanath Karunaratne said. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 14:41:20 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Announce ceasefire or face LTTE attack, Vaiko warns Lankan Govt
newindpress, august 6. Reaffirming solidarity with the Sri Lankan Tamils, MDMK general secretary Vaiko on Sunday said the Sri Lankan Government should announce the ceasefire first if it really wanted to settle the endless ethnic issue peacefully. ``Otherwise, the war will continue and will lead to the recapture of Jaffna Peninsula by the LTTE,'' Vaiko warned. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 23:02:55 EDT 2001 Back to the top

TULF wants referendum called off
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 10 a.m. SLT Monday August 6. The Central Committee of the Tamil United Liberation Front when it met yesterday, took a decision to request President Chandrika Kumaratunge to call off the referendum on August 21, 2001.

A news release by the TULF stated last night, that the party's Central Committee after much deliberation will request Kumaratunge to revoke the proclamation with regard to the referendum, to reconvene Parliament; for both the government and the opposition to avoid all confrontation; to request the Government to pursue the Norwegian peace initiative so as to be able to commence negotiations with the LTTE; and to request the Government to place before the country the Constitution framed on the basis of such negotiations with the LTTE and other political parties.

The TULF points out that the party, quote, "wishes to emphasize that its opposition to the referendum for the above said reasons does not signify its acceptance of the existing 1978 Constitution and wishes to clearly emphasize that the existing 1978 Constitution needs to be repealed and a new Constitution acceptable to all peoples enacted in its place," unquote.
Published: Mon Aug 6 01:43:14 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Related News Stories
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Chandrika urged to call off referendum  - The Hindu NUS
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TULF joins other Tamil parties in rejecting the referendum  - 123India.com
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Tamil party asks Chandrika to call off referendum  - Press Trust of India

Magistrate orders police to be arrested over Sri Lanka killing
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 18:40 IST. COLOMBO, Aug 6 (AFP) - A Sri Lankan magistrate Monday ordered the arrest of three police officers after returning a homicide verdict in the killing of an opposition activist during a protest here, officials said. The magistrate said two constables and a senior officer who ordered them to open fire on anti-government protestors on July 19 be arrested for a full inquiry. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 14:45:03 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Western help in the offing for tourism
Daily News, Tuesday, 7 August 2001 . Following enhanced security measures at the Bandaranaike International Airport, help is on the horizon for Sri Lanka's tourism industry which received a severe blow due to the LTTE terrorist attack. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 17:35:29 EDT 2001 Back to the top

JVP rallies to begin tomorrow - Tuesday
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 10.10 a.m. SLT Monday August 6. The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna will begin the first of its planned 28 rallies tomorrow - Tuesday August 7, 2001. The inaugural rally campaigning against the proposed referendum will be held at Nugegoda.

The JVP maintains that the Government cannot implement a new constitution without securing a two thirds majority in Parliament. JVP spokesmen have repeatedly reiterated that if the Government attempts to adopt any other procedure it will be violating the existing constitution and will be undemocratic.
Published: Mon Aug 6 01:43:14 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Dharsha Qualifies for Semifinals in 400m
LAcNet, 07 August 2001. Damayanthi Dharsha running in Women 400m qualifying rounds placed fourth in heat six. Her time 52.21 however earned her a place in the semifinals scheduled for tomorrow. It looks like dry and cool Edmonton weather has started to affect our athletes. Dharsha was pleased that she has got through the qualifying rounds. She will be in action again tomorrow at the Edmonton Commonwealth stadium in heat one running the outside lane. She will be competing against Grit Breuer from Germany and Olesya Zykina from Russia, both medal favorites. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 20:18:55 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka asks European Union to monitor referendum
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 16:33 IST. Sri Lanka has asked the European Union to monitor this month's nation-wide referendum on the need for a new constitution, election officials said Monday. Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake said he was waiting for a response after making the request to the EU to monitor the controversial plebiscite scheduled for August 21. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 08:14:50 EDT 2001 Back to the top

India, Pakistan to hold talks on sidelines of SAARC meeting in Colombo
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 19:01 IST. NEW DELHI, Aug 6 (AFP) - India and Pakistan will hold senior level talks -- the first since a landmark summit last month -- on the sidelines of the upcoming SAARC meeting in Sri Lanka, officials said here Monday. Indian Foreign Secretary Chokoila Iyer will meet her Pakistani counterpart Inamul Haq during the two-day meet of diplomats from the seven member-nations of the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC), Indian spokeswoman Nirupama Rao said. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 14:45:40 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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South Asian officials prepare for key meet  - 123India.com

Sri Lanka bus crash kills 12 passengers
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 18:29 IST. COLOMBO, Aug 6 (AFP) - At least 12 pilgrims were killed and another 15 injured when their bus ran off the road and plunged into a river in central Sri Lanka Monday, police said. The vehicle was taking the pilgrims to the town of Mahiyangana, one of the three places Buddha is supposed to have visited over 2,500 years ago, when the driver lost control and fell into the river. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 14:42:41 EDT 2001 Back to the top

LTTE issues death threat to Sathiya Sai baba
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 8.15 a.m. SLT Monday August 6. According to Indian news reports the LTTE is reported to have issued a death threat to Sathiya Sai Baba. Reports say that the temple in Bangalore where Sai Baba resides had received a telephone call threatening the dignitary with death, asserting Sai Baba does not speak out in defence of the Tamils in Sri Lanka.

Indian intelligence and security around Sai Baba has reportedly been strengthened since the telephone call.
Published: Mon Aug 6 01:43:14 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Sri Lankan Prime Minister Denies Talks with Opposition
People's Daily, Monday, August 06, 2001, updated at 10:57(GMT. Sri Lanka n Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremenayake has denied that the government was holding talks with the main opposition United National Party with the object of forming a national government or a government of national reconciliation, the state-run Daily News said on Monday. The prime minister denied reports in Sunday newspapers that he had initiated talks to set up a national government to overcome the current political crisis. He added that the referendum would definitely be held. While admitting a new political culture was essential, he called on opposition members who wanted to protect the interests of the country to join hands with the government. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 00:00:58 EDT 2001 Back to the top

SAARC: inside & outside
Yahoo India, 07 August 2001. CHINA IS reported to have expressed a desire to join the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). It appears that Bangladesh has supported the move. Pakistan and Sri Lanka will no doubt extend support. In spite of the Maoist insurgency in Nepal, it is doubtful if the Himalayan kingdom will be able to resist the idea. Apart from obvious strategic objectives, China would like greater access to the markets of India and such other countries as can be reached more conveniently by land than by the sea route via Singapore. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 20:06:50 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Once-Thriving Tamil Town Now a War Ruin
NY Times, 06 August 2001. A trickle of people who used to live in and around this once-tidy, bustling town have begun venturing back to its ghostly ruins, picking through rubble for family photos and other possessions abandoned in panic last year when army rockets rained destruction on their homes, temples, libraries and schools. Even when the mortars fall silent, the shadow of civil war never lifts here in the heart of the ethnically Tamil homeland that rebels have fought for in the last 18 years. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 08:09:44 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka port strike ends as insurance battle rages on
123India.com, Aug 05 2001 18:38 IST. COLOMBO, Aug 5 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's main sea port Sunday ended a five-day work stoppage which caused massive losses to shippers and foreign vessel owners already reeling under high war-risk insurance charges, officials said. Workers at the Jaya Container Terminal of the Colombo Harbour agreed to call off their trade union action following the withdrawal of a new shift system which the authorities tried to introduce this month, officials said. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 05:38:58 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Moderates demand revival of Norway's peace bid in Sri Lanka
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 13:20 IST. COLOMBO, Aug 6 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's moderate Tamils called Monday for the immediate revival of Norway's attempts to broker peace in the island amid an escalation of fighting between Tamil Tiger rebels and government forces. The Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) said its central committee met Sunday and decided to urge President Chandrika Kumaratunga to pursue Oslo's peace bid and avoid confrontation with her political opposition. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 05:37:33 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Taming of the pussycat
Yahoo India, 06 August 2001. SRI LANKA’S aggression was just too much for the Indians. The visitors, it seemed, were caught unawares by the sudden change in the Lankan approach, only to go down tamely in a one-sided final. It was a total anti-climax as the hosts clobbered the visitors in a match that had promised so much at the start. The moment Lankan skipper Sanath Jayasuriya called correctly, the Indians were sent on a leatherhunt. He looked to be leading a totally different team than the one that lost to India twice during the league stage of the tournament. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 08:01:41 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lankan jets bomb LTTE bases in north, east
The Hindu (International), 06-08-2001 . COLOMBO, AUG. 5. Sri Lankan Air Force jets bombed suspected LTTE bases in the island's north and east, a military spokesman said today. LTTE positions ahead of the forward defence lines at Nagarkovil in the Jaffna peninsula in the north were targeted on Thursday and Friday and bases near Koonaitivu near Foul Point in Trincomalee district in the east came under aerial attack yesterday, Brig Sanath Karunaratne said. Casualties, if any, could not be immediately ascertained. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 05:41:29 EDT 2001 Back to the top

PA and UNP move towards rapprochement:Chandrika indicates readiness to accept Ranil as PM
Roy Mendis in Colombo, 11.54 PM SLT Sunday August 5,2001. With the prospect of winning the August 21 referendum on a new constitution waning,President Chandrika Kumaratunga is indicating readiness to accept the United National Party (UNP) leader Mr.Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Prime Minister in a government of "national reconciliation".

"The President might have to accept Mr.Wickremesinghe as PM," said top leader of the ruling Peoples' Alliance (PA).A reliable source in the Sihala Urumaya (SU),which is brokering a deal between the PA and UNP,said that the President did not think that accepting Mr.Wickremesinge as PM was a "major problem".

According to SU sources,the "major problem" seems to be Presidential powers vis-a-vis a cabinet headed by Mr.Wickremesinghe.The latter is willing to accept Mrs.Kumaratunga as Executive President for the rest of her six year term,but he wants her powers to be pruned quite drastically.It is reported that he wants her to have no ministerial portfolios,when now she has two of the most important portfolios,namely Defense and Finance,with her.

Then there is the controversial issue of independent commissions.While there is agreement on other commissions,the views on the police commission are at variance.

Mrs.Kumaratunga and her close advisors believe that nowhere in the world has the executive arm of the state totally relinquished control over the police.And according to cabinet minister Dr.Sarath Amunugama,the present police force will turn into an arm of the UNP immediately on being freed from government control because 45% of it is UNP (having been recruited during the 17 years of UNP rule).

The UNP will have to convince the government that an independent police commission only means free, fair and de-politicised recruitment and not so much loss of control over the force.And given the sensitivities of the President,the UNP may have to agree to let her retain the Defense portfolio.Perhaps,as the SU suggests, police may be taken away from the Defense ministry and made part of a new "Interior" or "Home" ministry.In its written proposal to the two parties the SU has said the President should give up all portfolios except perhaps defense.SU sources said that the President had not rejected this outright.

The UNP has shown interest in entering into a deal with the PA.The appointment of a three man committee to negotiate with the PA is an indication of a desire for rapproachement.

The compelling factor is that both the PA and the UNP are in a no-win situation.Although government ministers and even some independent observers feel that the rural public's response to the PA's referendum campaign is encouraging,victory may be difficult with the Ceylon Workers' Congress (CWC) turning hostile and a chunk of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) having already left.The Tamil parties seem to be adamant about opposing the referendum obviously under the influence of the LTTE which wants Tamil politics to be radicalised.

Many PA sympathisers also say that after the attack on the Katunayake and Bandaranaike airport by the LTTE, government is no position to hold an expensive referendum and go in for the complex exercise of drafting an entirely new constitution.The need of the hour is said to be stability,national unity and a concerted effort to stop the national political and economic slide.

On the face of it,the UNP is on a stronger wicket as far as the referendum is concerned.But PA's campaigners disagree.They feel that in the post-Karunayake phase,the UNP's pro-LTTE stance and its dalliance with the pro-LTTE Tamil parties can prove to be deterimental to that party."The Sinhala majority feels that a tough stand against the LTTE and the minority parties is called for," said a PA insider.The President's toughness towards the LTTE and her bid to get out of the clutches of the SLMC,and by extension the minority parties, are seen as being in the interest of the Sinhalas.

The UNP has almost lost its numbers game in parliament.Through its actions,the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) has made it abundantly clear that it is not on the UNP bandwagon.In all likelihood,the JVP will abstain from voting for the no-trust motion and thus enable the PA to win.The JVP has very clearly said that it wants the PA government to survive for another year if the latter establishes the independent commissions sought and accepts the supervision of a body of emiment men.For the UNP,the possible accretion of support from the CWC may not be enough to offset the loss of the JVP.

The UNP's bid to impeach the President will also come a cropper because the JVP and the SU have said that the charges made against Mrs.Kumaratunga do not merit impeachment.Furthermore,the Tamil parties have said that they will not support an impeachment motion if the UNP insists on mentioning Mrs.Kumaratunga's 1998 offer to the LTTE control over the north for a ten year period.The Tamil parties consider the offer a desirable thing.

To date, the Sihala Urumaya has made the most sensible suggestion, political observers feel.It has asked the squabbling rivals to give up their rigid postures for the sake of the survival of the country.After mutual concessions and a cooling off period,they should form a government of "national reconciliation".The SU has suggested that the PA call off the referendum, reconvene parliament and appoint the independent commissions sought by the UNP while the UNP withdraws the no-trust and impeachment motions.

Subtle pressures from the international community is also playing a role in knocking some sense into the warring Sri Lankan politicos.The US,UK,India and the EU have time and again appealed to the government to pursue the peace process and begin talks with the LTTE.In the aftermath of the Katunayake attack, the Western powers stepped up the pressure by issuing advisories against non-essential travel to Sri Lanka.Both the PA and the UNP are aware that the advisories could compound the damage done to the Lankan economy by the July 24 devastation at Katunayake.
Published: Sun Aug 5 14:04:32 EDT 2001 Back to the top


Nepal foreign secretary heads for Colombo for delayed SAARC meeting
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 11:55 IST. KATHMANDU, Aug 6 (AFP) - Nepal's foreign secretary Narayan Shumsher Thapa left Monday for Colombo to attend a meeting of top South Asian diplomats which was put off in June as a mark of respect for the slain king of Nepal, officials said.The foreign secretaries' meeting of the seven-member South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) is due to open on August 9. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 05:38:15 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Indian and Pakistan Foreign Secretaries to meet on the fringe of SAARC this week
123India.com, Aug 06 2001 11:48 IST. Colombo, Aug 6 (UNI) Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistan will meet on the margins of SAARC summit in Colombo later this week , the first high-level contact between the two countries after the Agra Summit. Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar will inaugurate the Third Special Session of the Standing Committee of South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) on August nine. Foreign Secretaries of all the seven SAARC member countries have confirmed their participation in the two-day meeting, a senior Foreign More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 04:08:11 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Mixed reaction to Chandrika’s referendum
NDTV/MSNBC, Monday, August 6, 2001 (Colombo). Tamil parties in Sri Lanka are divided over their support to the President Chandrika Kumaratunga's call for a referendum. The new constitution will give Tamils greater autonomy. While many are supporting the referendum, there are those who see the referendum as a diversion of the peace process. The Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP), a part of the People's Alliance government and in the forefront of the political battle against the LTTE, has begun its campaign supporting the referendum. They say a new constitution would be mean greater autonomy and devolution of powers for the people in the northern provinces. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 00:56:32 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Chandrika renews bid to form all-party govt
TOI, august 5. The Sri Lankan government is again attempting to discuss the possibility of forming an all-party government in conjunction with the United National Party (UNP), but the move is hampered by opposition doubts over the government's motive."Whether they are genuine about a government of national unity or want to split the UNP remains the moot question," Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremasinghe told the independent Sunday Times newspaper. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 16:08:28 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Indian Tamils in Lanka face identity crisis
NDTV/MSNBC, Sunday, August 5, 2001 (Hatton). Even after having lived in Sri Lanka for at least two generations, over two lakh Indian Tamils are living like stateless citizens. With the Lankan government proposing extensive changes in the country's constitution, they are fearing further marginalization. Two generations back, Francis's family left their home in Tamil Nadu to work in Sri Lanka's tea gardens. But even today he has no identity card to prove he's a Sri Lankan citizen and that means he and his family get nothing from the government except harassment. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 00:56:53 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Karnataka to review security for Sai Baba, following LTTE threat
newindpress, august 5. The Karnataka police is reviewing the security arrangements for Satya Sai Baba, the self-proclaimed "godman" with disciples worldwide, following fresh threats from Tamil guerrillas.The move follows information supplied by the Andhra Pradesh police to its Karnataka counterparts, said a senior police official, who did not want to be identified. Sai Baba visits his Brindavan Ashram in Whitefield, on the outskirts of Bangalore, to give discourses and meet with disciples who cannot make it to his Puttaparthi base in Andhra Pradesh. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 16:35:37 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lankan port strike ends
TOI, august 5. Sri Lanka's main sea port on Sunday ended a five-day work stoppage which caused massive losses to shippers and foreign vessel owners already reeling under high war-risk insurance charges, officials said.Workers at the Jaya Container Terminal of the Colombo Harbour agreed to call off their trade union action following the withdrawal of a new shift system which the authorities tried to introduce this month, officials said. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 16:10:40 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka to court martial 11 air force men
The Hindustan Times, 6 August. SRI LANKA will court martial 11 suspended air force personnel, including three officers, for their alleged failure to prevent the LTTE attack on the Katunayake air base and adjoining international airport, a state-owned newspaper said today. The three officers are base commander Air Commodore RA Ananda, ground defence officer Wing Commander Nihal Ratnayake and security chief of the Bandaranaike international airport (BIA) Wing Commander Bhuvanake Abeysuriya, it said. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 04:09:58 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
·
Sri Lanka to court martial 11 Air Force personnel  - NDTV/MSNBC

Air raids on Sri Lankan rebels
BBC South Asia, Sunday, 5 August, 2001, 14:42 GMT 15:42 UK . The authorities in Sri Lanka say they have stepped up air attacks against Tamil Tiger rebels in the Jaffna peninsula and the Trincomalee district. A military spokesman said supersonic aircraft had been bombing positions held by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam LTTE over the last three days. So far, the spokesman said there have been no reports of any casualties in these attacks. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 12:16:06 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
·
Sri Lankan jets bomb LTTE positions  - The Hindu NUS

Why 'freedom fighters' are killing innocent people?, asks Advani
newindpress, august 5. Union Home Minister L K Advani on Sunday lashed out at Pakistan for equating terrorists with freedom fighters. ''Leaders of the neighbouring country describe terrorists as freedom fighters, but if they are fighting for independence they should confront the forces. Why are the people of Kashmir being massacred?'' Advani said while addressing a public rally held on the occasion of the birth anniversary of freedom fighter Mohanlal Gautum here. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 16:38:54 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Cricket: Sri Lanka win tri-series with victory over India
Yahoo Singapore, 06 August 2001. Sanath Jayasuriya hit a masterful 99 to set up Sri Lanka's 121-run victory over India in the day-night final of the triangular one-day cricket series in Colombo on Sunday. The Sri Lanka captain struck 11 fours in his 102-ball knock as his team posted 295-5 which forced Indian batsmen to take risks early in the innings. India, hoping for the first win in eight finals since April 1999, yet again failed to cross the last hurdle when they were shot out for 174. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 00:07:42 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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Cricket-Sri Lanka save best for last, says Whatmore  - yahoo
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Sri Lanka defeat India by 121 runs to win Coca-Cola Cup  - Cricinfo
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Sri Lanka set big target for India  - The Hindu NUS
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Sri Lanka make confident start  - BBC South Asia

India proves bookies right
Yahoo India, )6 August 2001. Every single hero of the previous matches failed the team as India crashed to yet another defeat in a final match going down to Sri Lanka by 121 runs to lose the Coca Cola Cup here on Sunday. The pressure of chasing 295 runs got on the team right from the word go and none of the Indian batsmen could stay long enough to put up even a semblance of fight. Indians were bowled out for 174 in 47.1 overs. More...
Published: Mon Aug 6 08:00:03 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Lankan Navy detains 111 illegal migrants
The Hindu NUS, Colombo, Aug. 5. (UNI). One-hundred-eleven Sri Lankans, mostly Tamils, who were about to leave the country for Italy by a boat were detained by the Lankan Navy this morning at Negombo, about 40-km from Colombo. Also arrested was the agent who had promised them to smuggle in Italy and jobs there. Police are investigating about the travel plans of the illegal migrants and interrogating the agent who promised them job after taking a huge amount of money. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 14:14:17 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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Sri Lanka seize illegal immigrants  - BBC South Asia
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Sri Lanka nets people-smuggling fishing boats headed for Italy  - Yahoo Asia

Lanka re-imposes media ban on LTTE war front
Asianage, 05 August 2001. The government on Friday re-imposed restrictions on journalists travelling to Sri Lanka’s warfront and areas held by Tamil Tiger rebels, about three months after withdrawing the tough regulations. Journalists travelling to either rebel-held areas or planning to interview soldiers in government-controlled areas would have to seek prior written permission, said W.A.S. Perera, additional secretary of the defence ministry. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 10:07:36 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Cricket pushes Lankan politics backstage
TOI, august 5. In Sri Lanka people are tensed, nervous, a little anxious, some even worried, not because of the country's political crisis but more over the expectations of their team's performance at the finals of the tri nation tournament in Colombo.When Sri Lankan politicians need to hide the country's woes amongst the public there is always a readily available spoon full of sugar to make the medicine go down -- cricket. For most Sri Lankans the present scenario is like a jigsaw puzzle in which the pieces don't fit but despite the political interest the subject still takes second place to cricket. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 04:11:47 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Tamil parties reject Chandrika’s invitation for talks
The Hindustan Times, 05 August 2001. Three Tamil political parties have rejected president Chandrika Kumaratunga's invitation for a discussion on the current political situation in the country, demanding that she convene the suspended parliament and call off the planned referendum on august 21. The three parties — Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO), all Ceylon Tamil Congress (ACTC) and Upcountry People's Front (UPF) — were invited for talks on August 8, but they rebuffed the overture, saying the referendum was a ‘futile exercise’ when parliament had been prorogued and democracy stifled. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 09:42:22 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Lankan Oppn in flurry over referendum issue
Indiainfo, 05 August 2001. The Lankan government's plan to call off the proposed referendum has sent alarm bells ringing among various warring political parties and most of them have begun harping on the formation of a government of national reconciliation. A fresh initiative by the Sinhala Urumaya, a party of hardcore Sinhalese, to bring the two warring political outfits namely the Peoples' Alliance (PA) and United National Party (UNP) to the negotiating table appeared to have succeeded, sources said. Media reports said UNP leader Ranil Wickremsinghe has told Sinhala Urumaya leader and former MP Tilka Karunaratne that if the PA was serious about government of national reconciliation, the two sides could appoint delegations to work out modalities. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 10:14:07 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
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Sihala Urumaya brokering formation of PA-UNP govt.  - The Island

Lanka says vital port is safe
TOI, august 5. The Sri Lankan government on Saturday said that the port of Colombo - the country's lifeline - was safe from attacks by Tamil Tiger rebels and appealed to international insurance companies not to increase the insurance premium for vessels calling on Colombo."There is no war risk in the port," Sri Lanka Port Authority chairman Mohan Samarasekera told reporters after insurance companies made it known that they may increase the premium. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 04:14:29 EDT 2001 Back to the top

US trained security men not deployed to work at airport
The Island, august 5. The US appeared to have identified the LTTE threat on key security and civilian installations in Colombo and its suburbs years before last month’s devastating terrorist assault on Sri Lanka’s only international airport.Under a special programme organised by the US Regional Security Office, the government was invited to send a group of officers and men to take part in an advanced anti-terrorist programme aimed at enhancing Sri Lanka’s ability to protect vital installations in 1998. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 00:52:53 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka's International Airport to Tighten Security
People's Daily, Sunday, August 05, 2001, updated at 17:15(GMT. The security of Sri Lanka 's only international airport is to be strengthened following the devastating attack by separatist Tamil Tiger rebels last month, airport officials said. They said that the measures to be taken include the double fencing of the perimeter of the Bandaranaike International Airport and the installation of electronic surveillance and alarm devices. The security measures have been decided by a national committee appointed by President Chandrika Kumaratunga to review and monitor the country's civil aviation activities, specially the Bandaranaike International Airport. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 09:45:03 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Kolkata's Maharaja is becoming a royal pain
newindpress, August 3. He declines to play domestic cricket because not all venues for fixtures have five-star hotels. When he has to play minor matches because of bad form with the bat, he ensures the game is in a metro; he needs his five-star room even though the rest of his team must do with B-grade lodgings. When bad form with the mouth forces him to sit out a match, he gets into the commentary box and litters it with wisdom on errors his stand-in deputy is making on the field even though his team is headed for victory.Ranjan Madugalle, former Sri Lankan cricketer and part of the commentary team for the tournament, had his tongue tucked firmly into his cheek when he remarked at the start of the day's play on Thursday that Ganguly and Cammie Smith had become ``rather friendly'' these days and had been ``spending a lot of their time together''. But if Madugalle thought he had summed up what ails the Indian skipper, he probably erred. Indiscipline isn't what ails Ganguly, it is only a symptom of the malaise called embryonic megalomania. More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 00:07:35 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Warne reveals his dislike for Ranatunga
newindpress, August 3. Australian legspinner Shane Warne has branded Sri Lanka's Arjuna Ranatunga as the player he most dislikes in world cricket.Warne said it was not the former captain's batting skills that made him the most difficult opponent to play against.``What I disliked was that he seemed to act contrary to the spirit of the game, at times pushing the rules to the limit and making life difficult for the umpires,'' Warne said in his autobiography, which is being serialised by the"Daily Mail".``It often appeared that if there was a ruse Ranatunga could pull to try to get under our skin, he would use it.'' More...
Published: Sun Aug 5 00:07:39 EDT 2001 Back to the top

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