The Lanka Academic

APRIL 13, 2006 EST, USA
VOL. 7, NO. 7


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Headline Summary
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Geneva talks on: LTTE agrees to truce monitors’ proposal, April 13, 2006. Contrary to fears, the second round of peace talks between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE will be held, though not as planned on April 19.

This follows an agreement between Ulf Henricsson, the head of the Scandinavian truce monitoring mission (SLMM) and SP Tamilselvan, the head of the political wing of the LTTE, in Kilinochchi on Thursday.

Tamilselvan told the media that the LTTE had agreed to the truce monitors' suggestion that a civilian vessel with truce monitors on board, be used to transport its senior commanders from the Eastern to the Northern sector and back.

The truce monitors had assured the LTTE that the safety of the journey would be guaranteed. More... Discuss this story
Published: Thu Apr 13 17:41:54 EDT 2006

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Canadian Tamil group welcomes the ban on LTTE and thank the national media.
Roy Edwards - Toronto, April 14. In a statement released to the press, 'Canadian Tamils for Democracy' states that the ban imposed by the Canadian government on LTTE will help safeguard the democratic rights of Tamils living in Canada. The group thanked the Human Rights Watch for their recent report "Funding the 'Final War': LTTE Intimidation and Extortion in the Tamil Diaspora" and the Canadian media organizations for publishing the HRW report and bringing the LTTE intimidation to the public discourse. Several Canadian newspapers, including the liberal leaning Toronto Star called for the ban on LTTE.

The release from the 'Canadian Tamils for Democracy' states "Hundreds of thousands of Tamils fled their homes, disavowing war and seeking instead to build a peaceful and secure future for themselves and their children. However, they continue to face serious threats and violence, and are being forced to support a war in which they do not believe -- a brutal assault on their democratic rights. Moreover, this coerced financial support is used to sustain the militarization of Tamil children in Sri Lanka who, given the persistent war and the prevailing poverty, are vulnerable to being recruited for the purposes of this horrific war."

Welcoming the ban on LTTE by the new Canadian government, the Tamil group says "Most of the world's major powers have already listed the LTTE as a terrorist organization, and now Canada has joined the ranks. We thank the Canadian media who, through their news and editorials, exposed the crimes being perpetrated by the LTTE and their front organizations upon members of the Canadian Tamil community. Furthermore, their coverage of the activities of the LTTE garnered support for this law among various communities in Canada. We thank the Canadian media for recognizing the severity of the LTTE's illegal intimidation and violence against Canadian Tamils, as evinced by their calls for the ban of the LTTE and its front organizations."

"We are humbled by the courage of ordinary Tamils, independent researchers, and community activists from England, Canada, Australia and Germany who contributed to the research and publication of this report by bravely speaking their minds.

"When action is taken against the LTTE and their frontal organizations, however, we ask that great care to be taken by relevant authorities, so that the rights and freedoms of the ordinary Tamil citizen are not infringed upon."

"Now that the LTTE has been listed as a terrorist organization by the Canadian government, and their activities have been banned, Canadian Tamils For Democracy urges the Canadian government, police, and others involved in law enforcement, to heed the recommendations of HRW, so that Canadian Tamils may live without fear."

Speaking about the ban, The Honorable Stockwell Day, Minister of Public Safety said "This listing is meant to support the Tamil community in Canada who are law-abiding and hard working people who have left their country of origin to build a better life for themselves and their families in Canada -- where the rule of law and human rights are respected." The ban became effective on April 8th, according to the announcement made by Hon. Stockwell Day.

Mr. Murugesu Ganesh of the 'Canadian Tamils for Democracy' said "As long as the Canadian government and their law enforcement agencies remain committed to preventing Canada becoming the funding haven for child conscription and militarization in Sri Lanka, and to protecting the Tamil Canadian community's right to live free of threats from the LTTE and to exercise their freedom of expression, they have the fullest support of the Canadian Tamils for Democracy." Discuss this story
Published: Thu Apr 13 17:11:14 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Tamil Tiger rebels seek postponement of Geneva peace talks with Sri Lanka , spokesman says
Associated Press, Thu April 13, 2006 06:09 EDT . DILIP GANGULY, Associated Press Writer

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Gunmen fatally shot three Tamil men in northern Sri Lanka, while two others were killed by land mines, police and Tamil rebels said Thursday, as the government eased a curfew in a town hit by fatal bombings and ethnic violence. Two rebels died in separate violence.

The Tamil Tiger rebels, meanwhile, said Thursday they want to postpone peace talks with the Sri Lankan government scheduled to be held in Geneva next week.

``We have asked Norway to announce a fresh date for the talks because we are going to have a central committee meeting before that,'' rebel spokesman Daya Master told The Associated Press.

Norway brokered the 2002 cease-fire, which has come under huge strain following escalating violence in this tropical island, where a two-decade of civil war killed over 65,000 people.

No immediate comment was available from the government.

Violence continued in northern Sri Lanka. Three Tamil civilians were shot in separate incidents late Wednesday and Thursday in the city of Jaffna, a police officer said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to reporters. Two more Tamil civilians were killed in a mine blast Thursday, pro-rebel Web-site TamilNet reported.

The motive behind the killings was not immediately known.

Two Tamil Tiger rebels were also killed in separate ambushes in eastern Batticaloa and northern Vavuniya on Thursday, a rebel Web site said.

The rebels blamed government-backed anti-rebel groups, but the Sri Lankan military spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe denied any involvement.

Meanwhile, soldiers patrolled the eastern city of Trincomalee after fatal bombings Wednesday and subsequent ethnic clashes between ethnic Sinhalese and Tamils left a total of 16 people dead.

A curfew in that city was relaxed Thursday to allow residents to get provisions, and there was no report of further violence, Media Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa told a news conference in Colombo.

``We are taking all precaution'' by boosting security in vulnerable areas and possibly canceling holidays for security forces, Yapa said.

It is festival time in Sri Lanka, with both the Sinhalese and Tamil New Year celebrations falling on Friday.

On Thursday, some 400 extra policemen were posted in capital, Colombo as a precautionary measure, police spokesman Rienzie Perera said.

The majority of Sri Lankans are Sinhalese, but the country's north and parts of the east are dominated by the Tamil minority and partially control by the rebels, who began fighting in 1983 for a separate homeland, accusing the Sinhalese of discrimination.

Yapa alleged that the Tamil Tiger rebels launched the bomb attacks in Trincomalee to provoke a backlash that would unravel the precarious cease-fire, but he said: ``We are not going to fall in the trap.'' Discuss this story
Published: Thu Apr 13 07:26:11 EDT 2006 Back to the top

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LTTE request postponement in Geneva talks  -
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Sri Lanka: Fear for safety: Professor Ratnajeevan Hoole
Amnesty International, April 13. A group believed to be a front organisation for the armed opposition group Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has threatened to kill an academic who has links to an anti-LTTE group... Back to the top

Trinco, part of new stratergy?
Special Correspondent, April 14. Reliable sources from the North East indicate that the LTTE has taken a new strategic decision to provoke racial incidents by attacking civilians in sensitive areas of the country... Back to the top

Two Tamil men fatally shot in northern Sri Lanka city of Jaffna
Associated Press, Thu April 13, 2006 02:21 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Gunmen fatally shot two Tamil men in northern Sri Lanka - , police said Thursday, as the government eased a curfew in an eastern town hit this week by fatal bombings and ethnic violence... Back to the top

Sri Lanka steps up security, curfew lifted in Trincomalee, April 13, 2006, 07:30 EDT. Colombo, April. 13 (PTI): The Sri Lankan Government today stepped up security amid fears that Tamil Tigers could carry out more bomb attacks against civilians, even as it lifted the curfew imposed after the blast in a market in the north-eastern port town of Trincomalee that claimed 17 lives. The government said the "usual measures" such as cancelling leaves of security forces were ordered despite the traditional Sinhala and Tamil New Year tomorrow to strengthen security arrangements... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Tigers say army ambushes kill 2 rebels, 13 Apr 2006 06:38:23 GMT. COLOMBO, April 13 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels said two of their members had been killed on Thursday in two separate ambushes they blamed on government troops operating behind rebel lines... Back to the top

PM speaks amid Sri Lanka turbulence, April 13. NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has given a timely backing to Sri Lanka's frail peace process amid growing violence in the island and uncertainty about peace talks due in Geneva next week... Back to the top

SRI LANKA: UN APPEALS FOR CALM AMID ESCALATING VIOLENCE, 13 April. New York, 13 April (AKI) - United Nations secretary general Kofi Annan has appealed to Sri Lanka's government and the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to attend next week's peace talks in Geneva, while the senior UN official on the island said the latest killings of aid workers could threaten humanitarian operations to those most in need... Back to the top

Trinco victims pledged compensation
BBC, Thu 13th Apr 05:07GMT. The government of Sri Lanka has pledged compensation for civilians affected by the series of blasts in Trincomalee... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Faces Spreading Violence as Bomb Attack Prompts Riot, Thu 13th Apr 04:50GMT. Sri Lanka is facing ``real danger'' that violence will spread in the country after a bomb attack sparked a riot in the northeastern town of Trincomalee resulting in the deaths of at least 15 people, truce monitors said... Back to the top

Rajapakse under pressure to be tough with LTTE
Dawn, Thu 13th Apr 04:50GMT. President Mahinda Rajapakse is under pressure from his two coalition partners to take a tough stand against Tamil Tigers when the government delegation resumes the second round of talks on April 19... Back to the top

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