The Lanka Academic

VOL. 6, NO. 325


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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
Democratic Tamil Activist Arrested In Geneva
Udara Soysa, february 25. V. Ramaraj, the Director of the Tamil Broadcasting Corporation (TBC) in United Kingdom and a leading Tamil democratic activist who has been covering Human Rights violations committed by the LTTE is being detained by the Swiss police under the charges made against him by LTTE activists in Geneva, according to sources from Geneva.

He had been organizing a pro-democratic protest against the LTTE activities in Geneva at the time of the arrest.

When contacted by The Independent, Swiss police declined to comment on his arrest. His family members told The Independent that the Swiss police have been giving contradictory statements on his arrest.

Meanwhile, Tamil democratic activists in UK and Europe are working on his release.

"This is very unfortunate incident. People like Ramaraj are risking lives working for democratic values amongst the Tamils. Several Sri Lankan newspapers including The Island have been carrying false stories about Ramaraj. All based on LTTE propaganda. It is vital that the Sri Lankan politicians give proper attention this case and seek for the immediate release of Mr. Ramaraj", said Vathanan Kumarathurai, spokesperson for Tamil Democratic Forum in Denmark to The Independent.

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Published: Sat Feb 25 18:14:06 EST 2006

Thousands march through Sri Lankan capital to mark anniversary of truce with Tamil Tiger rebels
Associated Press, Sat February 25, 2006 11:22 EST . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Thousands of people paraded through the streets of Sri Lanka - 's capital on Saturday to mark the fourth anniversary of a truce that halted the island's civil war. Violence in Sri Lanka - 's volatile north has killed some 150 people since December and raised fears that the country was on the verge of returning to civil war.

Yet there are signs that tensions have eased in the troubled northern Jaffna Peninsula since the peace talks, with shops staying open at night and people remaining outside after dark, a rare occurrence before the two sides sat down in Geneva.

``We have been able to go about freely since the talks,'' said K. Balasingham, a 50-year-old three-wheeler taxi driver in Jaffna, a town 300 kilometers (185 miles) north of capital, Colombo.

Others, however, feared that the peaceful atmosphere might not last.

``Although there is positive news these days, at times we doubt whether the two sides will keep their promises,'' said S. Soundararajan a newspaper vendor in Jaffna.

The Tamil Tigers launched their violent campaign in 1983 to create a separate state for ethnic minority Tamils, accusing the majority Sinhalese-dominated state of discrimination. The fighting claimed about 65,000 lives before the cease-fire was signed.


Associated Press writer Vincent Jeyan contributed to this report from Jaffna.

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Published: Sat Feb 25 12:52:40 EST 2006 Back to the top

Lanka Tamils divided over talks
BBC, february 25. Tamil political parties in Sri Lanka are divided over the outcome of the talks between the government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) and the Tamil Tiger rebels in Geneva, Switzerland.

Dharmalingam Siddharthan, leader of the Peoples Liberation Organisation for Tamil Ealam (PLOTE), welcomed the agreement to implement the CFA by the parties.

“Even the ceasefire is extended by one day we welcome it because it can postpone the war by one day,” he told BBC Sandeshaya.

The former parliamentarian however criticized both parties for not fully implementing the clauses of the truce as agreed. More...

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Published: Sat Feb 25 18:12:19 EST 2006 Back to the top

Sri Lanka and rebels agree on more talks
By Shimali Senanayake -- The New York Times, FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 24, 2006. CELIGNY, Switzerland. The first talks in three years between Sri Lanka and its ethnic separatist rebels have produced an unexpectedly cheerful agreement: To talk again in April... Back to the top

Will Sri Lanka disarm Karuna?, 25 Feb 2006. By M.R. Narayan Swamy, New Delhi: Sri Lanka's peace process has got a new lease of life following the Geneva talks with Tamil Tiger guerrillas but Colombo is faced with a daunting task: how to de-fang 'Colonel' Karuna? It is reliably learnt that the Sri Lankan government has promised Norway to disarm Karuna, who heads the breakaway faction of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and has emerged as the biggest headache for the guerrillas... Back to the top

Tigers to discuss truce with Sri Lanka Muslims, Feb. 25. COLOMBO, Feb. 25 (Xinhuanet) -- The Sri Lankan Tamil Tiger rebels say they would soon start talks with the minority Muslims on the Norwegian backed truce following their deliberations in Geneva with the government, according to the Tamil press reports here Saturday. The Tamil press quoted the Head of the political wing of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), S... Back to the top

Sri Lanka to open office in Karachi for tea marketing
com, February 26. KARACHI: Sri Lanka has decided to open an office in Karachi for tea marketing in order boost the sale of its main product in Pakistan... Back to the top

Tamil Tiger rebel surrenders to Sri Lankan army, military says
Associated Press, Sat February 25, 2006 04:28 EST . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A Tamil Tiger rebel has surrendered to the Sri Lankan army, two days after government and rebel officials met for peace talks in Geneva for the first time in three years, a Defence Ministry official said on Saturday... Back to the top

Sri Lanka beats Bangladesh by 78 runs to claim series
Associated Press, Sat February 25, 2006 06:43 EST . CHITTAGONG, Bangladesh (AP) _ Kumar Sangakkara smashed a brilliant century Saturday to give Sri Lanka a comfortable 78-run win over Bangladesh and a 2-1 limited-overs cricket series victory... Back to the top

Coordinated naval patrolling formalised
Hindu, february 25. CHENNAI: The `coordinated patrolling', which the Indian and Sri Lankan navies have taken up along the International Maritime Boundary Line, has been formalised... Back to the top

LTTE violates Ceasefire yet again by constructing two new bunkers in Omanthai
Munza Mushtaq in Colombo, February 24, 2006, 11.24 p.m.. In yet another gross violation to the Ceasefire Agreement, the LTTE has begun constructing two bunkers on either side of the A-9 road in Omanthai... Back to the top

Peace holds in Sri Lanka, for the time being - Opinion
Hindu, february 25. "POLITICS," CHAIRMAN Mao famously said in 1938, "is war without bloodshed while war is politics with bloodshed... Back to the top

China to provide rail carriages to Sri Lanka, 2006-02-25. China National Machinery Import and Export Corp (CMC) on Friday signed an agreement with the Sri Lankan Railway Department to provide 100 rail carriages to Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Sri Lanka accuses rebels of violating truce, Feb. 24 . COLOMBO, Feb. 24 (Xinhuanet) -- Sri Lankan Army has accused the Tamil Tiger rebels of building bunkers in the north in violation of the ongoing truce agreement. A report posted on the Army website here Friday said the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had built bunkers on either side of A9 highway linking the capital Colombo and the northern city of Jaffna ahead of the forward defense lines at Omanthai... Back to the top

LTTE blames Karuna for child recruitment, February 23. The mainstream LTTE has blamed the renegade commander, Karuna, for the recruitment of children for its combat units... Back to the top

Next round of Sri Lankan-LTTE talks in April, February 24. Colombo, Feb 24: The Sri Lankan Government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on Thursday agreed to hold their next round of talks between April 19 and 21 in Switzerland, the state-run Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation reported... Back to the top

Swiss to host second round of Sri Lanka talks, Friday 24. The Sri Lankan government and Tamil Tiger rebels have agreed to meet again in Switzerland in April after two days of tough but successful talks in Geneva... Back to the top

Chicken consumption drops in Sri Lanka amid fears of bird flu
Associated Press, Fri February 24, 2006 06:32 EST . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka - 's poultry farmers are seeing a drop in sales as fears of bird flu escalate after a recent outbreak in neighboring India prompted the culling of hundreds of thousands of birds, an official said Friday... Back to the top

Sri Lankan government says it will honor cease-fire commitment
Associated Press, Fri February 24, 2006 02:12 EST . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The Sri Lankan government said Friday it will honor commitments toward peace with the Tamil Tigers made at just-concluded talks in Geneva, Switzerland... Back to the top

Sri Lanka says no bird flu found as migratory birds under surveillance
Associated Press, Fri February 24, 2006 00:40 EST . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The Sri Lankan government said Friday it hasn't detected any cases of bird flu as health experts monitored areas where hundreds of thousands of migratory birds from Europe spend the winter... Back to the top

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