The Lanka Academic

 
APRIL 28, 2006 EST, USA
 
QUAERE VERUM
 
VOL. 7, NO. 22

JAYANTHA DHANAPALA

Candidate for UN Secretary General from Sri Lanka.
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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
Sri Lanka government and Tamil Tigers agree to meet in Geneva for peace talks
Associated Press, Fri April 28, 2006 11:47 EDT . JAIME ESPANTALEON - Associated Press Writer - OSLO, Norway (AP) The Sri Lanka - government and Tamil Tiger rebels have agreed to meet for peace talks in Geneva, but no date has been set, a Norwegian peace envoy said Friday. ``The parties have confirmed that they will participate in Geneva, but there is one issue that must be solved first,'' Hanssen-Bauer said in Oslo after a meeting of nations overseeing the Sri Lanka - peace process. ``The LTTE must hold a central committee meeting before they go.''

The announcement came as Sri Lanka - reopened roads linking government and rebel-held territory Friday after two days of airstrikes against guerrilla areas ended, but the threat of a return to civil war remained amid continuing bloodshed.

This week's violence, including two days of government airstrikes against rebel positions following a suicide bombing in the capital, posed the most serious threat yet to a 2002 truce between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels seeking a separate state in the north and east of the country.

The U.N. refugee agency in Geneva said Friday it expects many of the people displaced by the recent fighting to start returning home. Up to 8,000 people have fled several villages near Trincomalee because of the recent hostilities. A further 8,500 fled their homes because of claymore mine attacks near Muttur, according to the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees.

In Oslo, Norway's International Development Minister Erik Solheim, who also acts as a peace mediator in the conflict, said the Sri Lanka - government and rebels were in contact ``to establish the groundwork for talks in Geneva.''

``Both parties have in principle agreed to a Geneva meeting, and both parties have confirmed to us in the last couple of days that they want to come to Geneva as soon as possible,'' he said.

Solheim said the parties were ``fully committed to the cease-fire, despite some regrettable violations,'' but added that the situation had been deteriorating.

``This is clearly the most serious situation since the 2002 cease-fire,'' he said.

Representatives from the European Union, the United States, Norway and Japan the so-called ``co-chairs'' of the peace process met in Oslo Friday to discuss ways to stop the escalation of violence in Sri Lanka - .

Assistant U.S. Secretary of State Richard Boucher said the fact that Washington has listed the Tamil Tigers as a terrorist group should not hinder the peace process.

``We've made clear our views that attacks of violence ... cannot be part of the peace process and that the groups that do that are terrorist groups,'' he said. ``We need to try to cut off their ability to support themselves and carry out that kind of attack.''

Boucher condemned Tuesday's suicide bombing by a pregnant ethnic Tamil woman as ``particularly outrageous.'' The attack killed 11 people and wounded 26, including Sri Lanka - 's top general, and triggered reciprocal military action by both government troops and the Tamil Tiger rebels. Discuss this story
Published: Fri Apr 28 13:30:06 EDT 2006


Sri Lanka to schedule tentative peace talks
Minelle Fernandez in London, April 28, 2006, 22:00EDT. THE Sri Lanka government and Tamil Tiger rebels have agreed to meet for peace talks in Geneva, but no date has been set, a Norwegian peace envoy said yesterday. Jon Hanssen-Bauer said the peace talks would be held after a meeting by the leaders of the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, or LTTE. The two sides had been set to meet in the Swiss city earlier this week, but the rebels backed out, citing attacks on Tamil civilians and other disputes with the government. “The parties have confirmed that they will participate in Geneva, but there is one issue that must be solved first,” Hanssen-Bauer More...
Published: Fri Apr 28 21:57:12 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Tamil suicide bomber who targeted Sri Lanka top general was pregnant, investigator says
DILIP GANGULY , Associated Press, Fri 28th Apr 05:30GMT. The Tamil bomber who blew herself up targeting Sri Lanka's top general was pregnant and that helped her to conceal explosives and get inside army headquarters for a maternity check, an investigator says.

The brazen attack Tuesday triggered tit-for-tat military action by government troops and the rebels that has pushed Sri Lanka close to civil war after a tense four-year cease-fire.

The bomber has been identified as Anoja Kugenthirasah, 21, from the northern government-held garrison town of Vavuniya on the frontier of territory held by Tamil Tiger rebels and was believed to be a member of the insurgents' dreaded Black Tigers suicide squad, the investigator said.

The investigator, who cited hospital records in his account of results so far of the probe, spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the media.

Government Media Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said he was aware of the initial findings, but that ``cannot make comment until the investigation is over.''

On Tuesday, the bomber apparently targeted the car of Lt. Gen. Sarath Fonseka, Sri Lanka's army commander, inside Colombo's heavily fortified military headquarters.

The attack killed 10 people and wounded 27, including Fonseka, who suffered serious abdominal injuries and on Friday was in an intensive care unit where doctors described his condition as stable.

The suicide bombing led the Sri Lankan government to carry out air strikes on rebel bases in the northeast. The rebels hit back by exploding anti-personnel mines. The new violence has threatened to finally shatter a Norway-brokered peace deal on this tropical island of 19 million people that has been battered for months by sporadic violence.

Fonseka, a battle-hardened soldier with 35 years in the infantry, was appointed to the top post after President Mahinda Rajapakse took office in November.

On Dec. 4, the Tigers carried out the first major attack since the 2002 cease-fire, killing 12 navy sailors and unleashing dozens of rebel attacks, mainly using anti-personnel mines.

Sri Lanka's military at first exercized restraint, but Fonseka convinced Rajapakse that retaliation was needed and the military began to return fire when attacked. He also convinced the government that the 120,000-strong army needed to modernize its weapons after a four-year period of relative neglect since the cease-fire.

Fonseka clearly had become a formidable enemy for the Tamil Tigers.

So, the planning started.

The bomber had fake identification showing she was the wife of a clerk working for the Sri Lankan army, the investigator said, citing hospital records. Those records also showed she was pregnant, the investigator said.

Every Tuesday, the military hospital inside the headquarters holds a maternity clinic. She had attended the clinic on three preceding Tuesdays, the hospital records show, according to the investigator.

She also came to be known with the guards and learned the routine of Fonseka, who generally went home for lunch around 1:30 p.m., the investigator said.

This past Tuesday, the bomber got inside the army garrison a half-hour ahead of the clinic and stood in front of the hospital, which is beside the road that Fonseka takes to come out of the headquarters.

As his car approached, she came closer, and was shouted at by one of Fonseka's motor cycle escorts who ordered her to get away, the investigator said. She detonated the bomb shortly afterward.

Five of Fonseka's escorts were killed.

The Black Tigers are renowned for their skill at deploying suicide bombers against military, economic and civilian targets.

Victims have included former Sri Lankan President Ranasinghe Premadasa, former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, and numerous Sri Lankan ministers and senior politicians.

Another former president, Chandrika Kumaratunga, narrowly survived a suicide attack in 1999, but lost one eye in the blast.

The first Black Tigers suicide attack was on July 5, 1987, when a rebel known as Captain Miller drove a truckload of explosives into a military camp and detonated them, killing 40 soldiers.

Since then, 240 other rebels have blown themselves up.

Discuss this story
Published: Fri Apr 28 01:29:38 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Related News Stories
·
Lankan suicide bomber identified  - hindustantimes.com
·
Sri Lanka police find phone card used by suicide bomber  - lankabusinessonline.com
·
Investigator: Tamil suicide bomber who targeted top Sri Lanka general was pregnant  - Associated Press

Observations by SLMM Head on Trincomalee & Sampoor
SCOPP Press Release, Fri 28th Apr 11:45GMT. Major General Ulf Henricsson, Head of Mission of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) met with Dr... Back to the top

Sri Lankan peace deal in danger as five government troops die in mine attacks
CHRIS BRUMMITT, Associated Press, Fri 28th Apr 05:30GMT. Mine explosions killed five government military personnel, and police found five decapitated bodies dumped in a rubber plantation, as violence that has pushed Sri Lanka to the brink of civil war showed no signs of letting up... Back to the top

Guilty Plea Marks Stunning Fall for Kumar
Associated Press, Fri April 28, 2006 15:25 EDT . FRANK ELTMAN - Associated Press Writer - The plea marked a stunning fall for man who emigrated to the U... Back to the top

Lanka Business Online
lankabusinessonline.com, April 28, 16:15 EDT. SAMPUR, Sri Lanka, Apr. 28 (AFP) - Houses in this rebel-held town were deserted and streets eerily empty Friday, three days after Sri Lanka's military pounded it with a fiery blitz that a Tamil Tiger political officer said killed 15 people and injured 25. Smashed buildings, tangled powerlines and small blood-stained bomb and shell craters gave a hint of the mayhem wreaked during Tuesday's government strike on the town in Trincomalee district of northeastern Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Sri Lanka urges EU to put LTTE on terror list
khaleejtimes.com, April 28, 2006, 16:05EDT. NEW DELHI - Sri Lanka said on Friday it would not denounce the ceasefire agreement with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels, even as it urged the European Union to put the LTTE on its list of terror groups... Back to the top

Increasing intimidation exacerbates displacement in Sri Lanka
alertnet.org, April 28, 2006, 16:05EDT. COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, Apr 28 (UNHCR) – UNHCR is calling for access to all areas where people have fled their homes in recent days in north-eastern Sri Lanka following the recent upsurge of violence in the island nation... Back to the top

Axia Hands Over Tsunami Houses built for SOS Village in Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Fri April 28, 2006 12:26 EDT . - - Homes in Sri Lanka -

SAN DIEGO, April 28 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- S... Back to the top


UN raps Lanka, Tigers for upsurge in killings, rights abuse
hindu.com, April 28, 2006, 16:05EDT. Colombo, April. 28 (PTI): The United Nations today rapped both Sri Lankan forces and Tamil Tigers for the fresh spate of violence and called for an end to extra-judicial killings and human rights violations. A spate of killings had contributed to the recent violence leading to Tuesday's suicide bomb attack on the army commander and the reprisal bombing of Tiger positions, said Philip Alston, the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions... Back to the top

Media rights groups criticize Sri Lanka for failing to solve Tamil journalist's killing
Associated Press, Fri April 28, 2006 11:50 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Media rights groups on Friday criticized Sri Lanka - for failing to solve the killing of an ethnic Tamil journalist whose writings favored separatist Tamil Tiger guerrillas... Back to the top

Govt-LTTE mull use of sea plane
hindustantimes.com, April 28, 2006, 11:16 EDT. Chances of peace talks between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE have brightened with the two sides likely to come to an agreement soon on the controversial issue of the transport of the LTTE's top commanders... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Daily Mirror (subscription)
dailymirror.lk, April 28, 2006, 11:28 EDT. Political parties including the main Opposition UNP and the Tamil United Liberations Front (TULF) yesterday condemned the LTTE attack on Army Commander Sarath Fonseka... Back to the top

Nations overseeing Sri Lanka peace process meet in Norway
Associated Press, Fri April 28, 2006 05:29 EDT . - - OSLO, Norway (AP) Representatives from nations overseeing the Sri Lanka - peace process were meeting in Oslo Friday to discuss ways to stop the escalation of violence between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels... Back to the top

Foreign donors hold crucial talks on Sri Lanka unrest
hindu.com, April 28, 2006, 11:28 EDT. Colombo, April. 28 (PTI): Sri Lankan peace mediator Norway today said it was "extremely concerned" about the escalating violence in the island nation and strongly urged Colombo and Tamil Tiger rebels to resume talks. "We strongly urge the parties to sit down together for talks in order to put a stop to the violence," Eric Solheim, the Norwegian Minister for International Development said ahead of an emergency meeting in Oslo of top aid donors and backers of the peace process... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Daily Mirror (subscription)
dailymirror.lk, April 28, 2006, 11:16 EDT. The government last night vowed to take all necessary action to counter and prevent terrorist acts while condemning yesterday’s assassination attempt on Army Commander Sarath Fonseka... Back to the top

S.Lanka army raids shopping mall, grabs Tamil woman
alertnet.org, COLOMBO, April 28 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan troo. COLOMBO, April 28 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan troops wearing motorcycle helmets stormed into a shopping mall in the capital Colombo on Friday, Reuters witnesses said, grabbing a woman who police said they suspected was linked to Tamil Tiger rebels... Back to the top

UN official calls for full protection of civilians in Sri Lanka
xinhuanet.com, April 27 . UNITED NATIONS, April 27 (Xinhua) -- UN Emergency Relief Coordinator Jan Egeland on Thursday called on parties in Sri Lanka to ensure full protection of civilians... Back to the top

Sri Lankan President meets Indian High Commissioner
irna.ir, April 28. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse met and briefed the Indian High Commissioner and the Colombo-based diplomatic heads of mission of the donor co-chairs, on the assassination bid on the army chief in Colombo and the government's retaliatory strikes on the `selected targets' in the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)-held area in the eastern Trincomalee district... Back to the top

Sri Lanka arrest GoldQuest upliners under anti-pyramiding statute
lankabusinessonline.com, Fri, 28 April 2006 18:50:12 . Apr. 27 (LBO) – Seven persons who were caught promoting the GoldQuest network marketing scheme have been arrested in southern Sri Lanka, police said. The seven who were having a GoldQuest promotional scheme were arrested under the new anti-pyamiding provisions of the Banking Act, police in the town of Karandeniya in the southern provincial, Galle district said... Back to the top

Sri Lankan violence jogs envoy s memory
cleveland.com, Thursday, April 27, 2006. Recent violence in Sri Lanka brought back vivid memories of child suicide bombers to a former U... Back to the top

U.N. expects people displaced by Sri Lanka violence to return home
Associated Press, Fri April 28, 2006 06:48 EDT . - - GENEVA (AP) The U.N. refugee agency said Friday it expects many of the people displaced by fighting in Sri Lanka - to start returning home after two days of airstrikes against guerrilla areas ended... Back to the top

Sri Lanka reopens roads, airstrikes end, but civil war threat remains
Associated Press, Fri April 28, 2006 01:42 EDT . CHRIS BRUMMITT - Associated Press Writer - TRINCOMALEE, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka - reopened roads linking government and Tamil Tiger rebel-held territory Friday after two days of airstrikes against guerrilla areas ended, but the threat of a return to civil war remained amid continuing bloodshed... Back to the top

India loathes Tigers, fears impact of Sri Lanka war
reuters.com, Fri 28th Apr 05:30GMT. No country distrusts the Tamil Tigers more than India but when Sri Lanka began bombing rebel positions this week its giant neighbor got nervous... Back to the top

Tamil leaders angered by RCMP raids, deny fundraising for terrorist group
Associated Press, Fri 28th Apr 05:30GMT. Leaders of Montreal's Tamil community say they don't fund the Tamil Tigers and they resent being tarred as terrorist supporters after a recent RCMP raid on their headquarters... Back to the top

International rating agencies lower Sri Lanka's credit outlook
lankabusinessonline.com, Fri 28th Apr 05:30GMT. International rating agencies Fitch and Standard & Poor's Thursday cut Sri Lanka's credit outlook to negative from stable, reflecting the island's worsening security situation... Back to the top

India move on Lanka after TN polls
IBN/CNN, April 28. New Delhi: Sri lanka was quiet for today. But don't expect any proactive moves by India on Sri Lanka until the Tamil Nadu elections are over... Back to the top

Six killed as fresh violence engulfs Sri Lanka
Shimali Senanayake in Colombo, April 27th, 2006, 6.30 pm. At least four soldiers and two sailors were killed and six others wounded in separate explosions on Thursday, even as the military ceased aerial bombings on rebel positions in eastern Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Sri Lanka cease air and artillery strikes on rebels
Munza Mushtaq in Colombo, April, 27, 2006, 3.00 p.m.. Air and artillery strikes launched by Sri Lankan security forces on Tuesday has ceased 'atleast for the time being' with the situation in Trincomalee reportedly being calm today... Back to the top

Tigers forcing Tamils to flee from homes. TRO appeals for help.
K.S. Rajkumar from Jaffna., April 27. Residents in areas of Trincomalee district say LTTE is forcing them to flee from their homes and urging the residents to seek shelter in camps set up by the TRO... Back to the top

LTTE attack jeopardises ceasefire: CPI (M)
hindu.com, Friday, Apr 28, 2006. NEW DELHI: The Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Thursday asked the Government of India to send out a clear message that the activities of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam would not be tolerated as it would have repercussions within India... Back to the top

Monitors take advantage of break in Sri Lanka violence
timesonline.co.uk, April 27, 2006, 16:20 EDT. International truce monitors travelled to the north-east of Sri Lanka today as an uneasy break in recent violence offered some slim hope that the country’s 2002 ceasefire may hold... Back to the top

LTTE steps up mine attacks as Norwegian peace envoy returns
hindu.com, April 27, 2006, 16:20 EDT. Colombo, April. 27 (PTI): Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka today kept up attacks on security forces, killing at least five security personnel in two separate mine attacks. Amid surging violence, Norway's newly- appointed peace envoy Jon Hanssen Bauer left the island, having failed in his week-long mission to push the rebels and the government to resume negotiations in Geneva, Switzerland... Back to the top

US to lead global campaign against LTTE
oneworld.net, 27 April 2006. The United States Wednesday vowed to organise an international pressure campaign against the LTTE in the aftermath suicide bombing in Colombo... Back to the top

India loathes Tigers, fears impact of Sri Lanka war
alertnet.org, 27 Apr 2006 13:22:55 GMT. By Lindsay Beck COLOMBO, April 27 (Reuters) - No country distrusts the Tamil Tigers more than India but when Sri Lanka began bombing rebel positions this week its giant neighbour got nervous... Back to the top

Co-chairs to hold meet on Lanka in Oslo
hindustantimes.com, April 27, 2006, 06:50 EDT. The co-chairs of the Tokyo Donors' Conference will be meeting in Oslo urgently to address the issues thrown up by the LTTE's bid on the life of the Sri Lankan Army Chief and the subsequent air, sea and land operations against LTTE positions in Trincomalee district... Back to the top

India move on Lanka after TN polls
ibnlive.com, April 27, 2006, 16:20 EDT. New Delhi: Sri lanka was quiet for today. But don't expect any proactive moves by India on Sri Lanka until the Tamil Nadu elections are over... Back to the top

Anti-personnel mine explodes, wounding 2 anti-terrorist commandos
Associated Press, Thu 27th Apr 5:00GMT. An anti-personnel mine exploded in northwestern Sri Lanka on Thursday, wounding two commandoes, the military said, in the latest threat to the country's fragile cease-fire... Back to the top

Suicide blast, LTTE’s best weapon
hindustantimes.com, April 27, 2006, 06:50 EDT. The suicide bomber has been the LTTE's most potent weapon in its struggle to establish an independent "Tamil Eelam" in the North and East of Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Sri Lanka bomber used maternity day to enter army HQ: Report
zeenews.com, Apr 27, 2006. A suicide bomber who blew up the Sri Lankan army chief's motorcade used maternity day to enter the military compound in the heart of Colombo disguised as a pregnant woman, a report said today... Back to the top

Sri Lankan peace deal in danger as sailors die in mine attack
Associated Press, Thu April 27, 2006 05:32 EDT . CHRIS BRUMMITT - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Mine attacks killed two navy sailors and wounded two commandos in northern Sri Lanka - on Thursday in the latest in a barrage of violence that is posing the biggest danger yet to the country's 4-year-old cease-fire... Back to the top

Will The LTTE make an air Strike on Colombo?
com, April 27, 2006, 06:55 EDT. The LTTE demonstrated its unimpaired capability for planning and mounting a clandestine strike against even the key nerve centres of the Government in Colombo on April 25,2006... Back to the top

Tamil rebels say 40,000 people have fled homes in face of government airstrikes
DILIP GANGULY , Associated Press, Thu 27th Apr 5:00GMT. Some 40,000 civilians fled their homes in northeastern Sri Lanka to escape government airstrikes on Tamil rebel areas, the insurgents said Thursday, as the country's cease-fire faced its most serious threat in four years... Back to the top

Colombo fears separatist attacks on banks
FT.com, Thu 27th Apr 5:00GMT. Sri Lanka yesterday enforced a security blanket around the capital Colombo amid fears that Tamil separatists would attack economic targets such as banks... Back to the top

Norway issues travel advisory for parts of Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Thu April 27, 2006 06:47 EDT . - - OSLO, Norway (AP) Norway, the peace mediator in Sri Lanka - 's civil war, advised its citizens Thursday against traveling to parts of the country because of increased violence... Back to the top

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