The Lanka Academic

VOL. 4, NO. 291

Headline Summary
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President attempts to allay fears of a possible war, stresses that alliance is committed to ‘negotiated settlement’
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, January 22, 2004, 11.55 pm. President Chandrika Kumaratunga today called upon all major political forces to join hands if the country is to get rid of its long standing crisis, the two decade long ethnic conflict. Ms. Kumaratunga also emphasised that the recently sealed SLFP-JVP alliance was just the first phase of a grander alliance, the Presidential Secretariat announced today.

She pointed out that during her entire political life she has been committed to a negotiated settlement on the ethnic conflict and added that both parties in the alliance too believed that ‘war was not the solution’ to the ethnic issue. However, the President said the alliance did have some reservations on certain aspects in the manner in which Prime Minister Wickremesinghe was conducting the peace process.

MS. Kumaratunga emphasized that the SLFP and JVP had reached a consensuses especially with regard to the economy and the ethnic issue. She said “a market economy with a human face” would be the alliance’s economic principle, which would revive and adopt global advances in modern technology, maximize foreign capital investment on the basis of mutual benefit with a view of opening the country to global economic progress.

The President was also appreciative of the recent statement made by LTTE Political Wing Leader Thamilselvan, that the LTTE leadership was willing to negotiate peace with any Southern party with a peoples mandate irrespective of individuals, according to the Presidential Secretariat.
Published: Thu Jan 22 13:21:46 EST 2004

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Protesting Buddhist Monks
Leo de Lile in Colombo, 8.85pm, SLT Jan.22, 2004. Protesting Buddhist monks march in Pettah, Colombo, Sri Lanka on Thursday, Janaury.22, accusing some Christian groups working in the country of converting Buddhists to Christianity, and demanding that they should be banned. Over one hundred members of the National Monks Front, an extreme nationalist organization, claim that over 600 Christian groups are operating as volunteer, humanitarian organizations in predominantly Buddhist Sri Lanka and converting Buddhists promising financial benefits. More...
Published: Thu Jan 22 10:02:43 EST 2004 Back to the top
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Sri Lankan Buddhist monks protest against proselytizing Christians  - Associated Press

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Indian Oil Agreement Fully Effective Now
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 1.50 P.M Thursday 22 January. The agreement signed between the government of Sri Lanka and the Lanka Indian Oil Company (LIOC) became fully effective today after the Managing Director of the LIOC M. Nageswaran paid the balance US $ 45 Million to Finance Secretary Charitha Ratwatte at the ministry of Economic Reform, Science and Technology. Thereafter the government handed over to LIOC documents to license, import, and store and distributes Petroleum Products in Sri Lanka making the agreements signed on 30 December last year fully effective. The sales agreement was negotiated for a total price of US $ 75 Million.

Lanka Indian Oil Company (LIOC) a fully owned subsidiary of IOC was handed 100 Filling Stations owned by Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) in December 2002 on an interim agreement pending independent valuation of the relevant assets by the Financial Advisor, Ernst & Young (E & Y).

A statement from the Ministry of Economic Reform stated that in keeping with the policy of liberalizing the Petroleum Sector, Public Enterprises Reforms Commission (PERC) on behalf of the government conceptualized a model for restructuring Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) in 2002. Accordingly, the market is to be partially liberalized by allowing 3 players in to the down stream petroleum retailing in Sri Lanka. The government invited Indian Oil Company (IOC) to be the second player and a third player is currently being identified through a competitive process.
Published: Thu Jan 22 03:02:00 EST 2004 Back to the top

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IOC in deal with Sri Lanka to retail fuel  -
Indian Oil makes final payment for Sri Lanka stake  -
IOC pays off $75 mn to Sri Lanka to retail fuel  -

LTTE Must Release All Child Soldiers- UNICEF
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 11.34 A.M Thursday 22 January. A report released by the UNICEF office in Colombo has called on the LTTE to release all child soldiers and to stop the recruitment of children... Back to the top

Alliance Should Not Be An Impediment To The Peace Process- Akashi
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 7.00 A.M Thursday 22 January. Japanese Special Envoy Yashushi Akashi says the formation of the alliance between the SLFP and the JVP should not be an impediment to the progress of the Sri Lankan peace process... Back to the top

Iranian Finance Minister Here
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 6.45 A.M Thursday 22 January. Iranian Minister of Finance and Economics Mazaheri arrived in Sri Lanka early this morning to attend the 7th session of the joint economic co-operation commission between Sri Lanka and Iran... Back to the top

Tamil rebels refuse to attend key talks with donors and Sri Lanka 's government over peace process and aid
Associated Press, Thu January 22, 2004 08:46 EST . SHIMALI SENANAYAKE - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Tamil Tiger rebels said Thursday they will not attend a key meeting this week with international donors and Sri Lanka - 's government to review the faltering peace process and aid because of a political power-struggle in Colombo that threatens the truce... Back to the top

Former skipper Duleep Mendis appointed chief executive of Sri Lanka Cricket
Associated Press, Thu January 22, 2004 07:22 EST . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Former national captain Duleep Mendis was on Wednesday appointed as the chief executive of the Sri Lankan cricket board, the board said in a statement Thursday... Back to the top

Iran to aid Sri Lanka's oil exploration, Thursday 22 January 2004, 14:43 Makka Time, 1. Iran will help Sri Lanka prospect for oil besides opening a $20 million credit line for the country's power and energy sector, it was announced on Thursday... Back to the top

SLFP-JVP Alliance already faces serious hitches
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, January 21, 2004, 11.03 pm. Describing the SLFP-JVP alliance as an ‘anti peace political pact’, LTTE theoretician Anton Balasingham today claimed that the alliance might create objective conditions for the resumption of an ethnic war... Back to the top

LTTE says it will not talk to Chandrika-JVP alliance, January 21, 2004. The LTTE has said that it will not talk to the United Peoples' Freedom Alliance (UPFA), comprising Chandrika Kumaratunga's Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), because the UPFA does not recognise the LTTE as the sole representative of Tamil... Back to the top

Lankan politics may delay India-Lanka defence pact, January 22,2004. Electoral politics in Sri Lanka may delay the finalisation of the India-Sri Lanka Defence Cooperation Agreement (DCA), Hindustan Times learns... Back to the top

World News : Sri Lanka Sri Lanka to offer amnesty in lieu of ..., January 22, 2004. In a bid to curb spiralling crime, fuelled by the easy availability of arms, Sri Lanka plans to grant amnesty to those who return illegal weapons to the government, reports OneWorld... Back to the top

War Over but No Peace for Sri Lanka's Displaced, January 22, 2004. COLOMBO, Jan 22 (OneWorld) - Political turmoil in the federal government is obstructing the resettlement of thousands of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the town of Chavakachcheri in war-torn northern Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Tamil rebels warn of danger of renewed war in Sri Lanka +
Associated Press, Wed January 21, 2004 08:33 EST . - - COLOMBO, Jan. 21 (Kyodo) Sri Lanka - 's Tamil Tiger rebels said Wednesday that a new linkup between President Chandrika Kumaratunga's Sri Lanka - Freedom Party (SLFP) and the Marxist JVP or People's Liberation Front ''might create objective conditions for the resumption of ethnic war.'' The new formation, called the United People's Freedom Alliance, is committed to ousting the ruling United National Front (UNF) government of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, who was elected in December 2001 and halted Sri Lanka - 's two-decades-long ethnic war. But peace negotiations with the LTTE stalled after six rounds of talks last April with the Tigers alleging that ethnic Tamil areas under rebel control have not received a sufficient peace dividend... Back to the top

Sri Lanka to Sign Deal to Protect Interests of Housemaids, ..., January 22,2004. RIYADH, 22 January 2004 — Sri Lanka will soon sign a unified contract with Saudi Arabia to look after the interests of the island’s domestic servants and their respective employers in the Kingdom, the country’s ambassador, Ibrahim Sahib Ansar, told Arab News... Back to the top

Opposition Muslim party urges Hakeem to write to Prabhakaran over SLMC-LTTE MOU
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, January 21, 2004, 10.22 pm. The National Unity Alliance, a Muslim constituent of the Opposition People’s Alliance today expressed their shock, dismay and regret over Sri Lanka Muslim Congress Leader Rauff Hakeem’s failure to write to LTTE leader V... Back to the top

Sri Lanka 's new opposition alliance says will review Norway's role as peace mediator
Associated Press, Wed January 21, 2004 05:02 EST . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka - 's newly formed opposition alliance said Wednesday it would ``review thoroughly'' the role played by Norway in mediating an end to the island's two-decade civil war, a party official said... Back to the top

Norway put on notice by new Lankan party, 22 January. COLOMBO (AFP) - Sri Lanka's new political party formed by President Chandrika Kumaratunga and a key leftist group strongly hinted Wednesday they will ask Norway to withdraw as the island's peace broker... Back to the top

Sri Lanka reds shed Marxist image, endorses capitalism, January 21, 2004. Sri Lanka's main leftist party, which led two uprisings that were crushed at a cost of 80,000 lives, said Wednesday they had shed their Marxist ideology and were keen to establish a capitalist government... Back to the top

Rebels say new Sri Lanka party may stir up war, January 21, 2004. COLOMBO, Jan 21 (Reuters) A political alliance between President Chandrika Kumaratunga's party and a hardline Marxist party could lead Sri Lanka back into war, the Tamil Tiger rebels warned today Back to the top

Lankan Tigers Appeal To World Community To Save Peace Process, January 21, 2004. Warning that the current truce was under threat of collapse due to the power struggle between the president and the prime minister, Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka have appealed to the international community to save the country's peace process... Back to the top

Lanka parties agree on talks with Tigers, January 21, 2004. President Chandrika Kumaratunga's Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the Marxist JVP (People's Liberation Front) have agreed to enter into political negotiations with Tamil guerrillas to resolve the Tamil minority ethnic conflict despite the two sides holding different views on finding a resolution to the conflict... Back to the top

Aid on agenda despite Sri Lanka political woes, January 21, 2004. COLOMBO (Reuters) - Diplomats will try to boost humanitarian aid for Sri Lanka this week despite a political fight between the president and prime minister that has sidelined the island's peace process... Back to the top

SCOPE: Sri Lanka farmers dream of making riches mining gems+
Associated Press, Tue January 20, 2004 20:28 EST . - - RATNAPURA, Sri Lanka - , Jan. 21 (Kyodo) A black, narrow and stuffy cave about 15 meters under a rice paddy was like a dark sauna, where water dripped from the ceiling and pooled on the floor. Sri Lanka - is home to many kinds of gems, except for diamonds and emeralds... Back to the top

Sri Lanka's president has election in sight, January 21, 2004. The political party led by Sri Lanka's President, Chandrika Kumaratunga, has formed an alliance with a Marxist party in a bid to oust the government of Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe Back to the top

Japanese envoy arrives in Sri Lanka amid doubts over aid pledge, January 21, 2004. Japan's special peace envoy to Sri Lanka has arrived in the capital, Colombo amid fears that foreign donors may not release $US4.5 billion in aid... Back to the top

Ashland looks to Sri Lanka for growth, January 21, 2004. ASHLAND -- Sri Lanka appears to be just what the doctor ordered to cure what ails this city... Back to the top

Oil majors in Lanka quest, January 21, 2004. New Delhi, Jan... Back to the top

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