The Lanka Academic

MAY 2, 2006 EST, USA
VOL. 7, NO. 26


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
Canada pinches Tamil Tigers' pocketbooks
CSM, May 2. TORONTO – As Sri Lanka teeters on the brink of civil war half a world away, Canada is cracking down on a rebel group that has long relied on expatriate funding to fuel its fight for an independent homeland there.

With the largest concentration of Sri Lankan Tamils living abroad, Canada has been a key revenue source for the separatist Tamil Tigers. One of the first major acts of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's new Conservative government this spring was to declare the Tigers a terrorist organization, a move the previous Liberal government had resisted.That April 10 decision makes it illegal for Canadians to support - financially or otherwise - the Tigers, also known as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). "The decision to list the LTTE is long overdue," said Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day. "Our government is clearly determined to take decisive steps to ensure the safety of Canadians against terrorism." More... Discuss this story
Published: Tue May 2 20:13:36 EDT 2006

Sri Lankan president says 'enough is enough,' calls for immediate peace talks
Associated Press, Tue May 2, 2006 11:46 EDT . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) President Mahinda Rajapakse on Tuesday said his tropical island had seen enough violence and called for immediate peace talks with Tamil Tiger rebels. Shortly after Rajapakse's election victory last November he won on pledges that he would not allow Sri Lanka - to be divided the rebels' reclusive leader announced he would intensify the struggle for an independent homeland if Tamil grievances were not addressed.

His statement was followed by a sharp upsurge in violence, with suspected rebels attacking Sri Lankan security forces almost daily. The violence eased after Norway got both sides to Geneva in February for talks.

Then, in early April, violence surged again.

The rebels have a formidable military machine, with 3,000-4,000 fighters, intensive training, sophisticated weapons and recruiting drives that bring in boys as young as 13. They make fighters wear cyanide capsules around their necks so they can commit suicide if captured.

They also have tens of thousands of sympathizers.

Some Tamils support the Tigers because of years of frustration at being treated as second-class citizens. But others back them from fear of the rebels' intelligence network and their brutal retaliation against anyone seen as a traitor.

The rebels now control about one-seventh of Sri Lanka - , mostly in the north and east.

Violence has also surged between the main Tiger group and a renegade faction which split off in a bloody 2004 breakaway.

On Tuesday, the renegade faction said it had attacked a Tiger camp in northeastern Sri Lanka - , killing eight fighters. Earlier, the main Tiger group had accused the government of shelling their camp, but saying only one person was wounded.

On Sunday, the Tigers attacked three breakaway camps in the eastern town of Batticaloa, killing 15 people. T. Thuyavan, a spokesman for the breakaway faction, said Tuesday's attack was a retaliation, though there was no way to confirm his statements. Sri Lanka - 's government denied involvement in Tuesday's assault. Discuss this story
Published: Tue May 2 13:34:16 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Sri Lanka main opposition to support gov't in possible war, May 2. COLOMBO, May 2, 2006 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lanka's main opposition party said here Tuesday that peace process was the only way to resolve the country's separatist armed conflict orchestrated by the Tamil Tigers, but the party would back the government if it opted for a military solution.

Lakshman Kiriella, a frontline member of the United National Party (UNP) told reporters that "we say peace process is the only way to solve the problem but if the government wants to opt for war we will then back it."

Kiriella blamed the government headed by President Mahinda Rajapakse for what he termed the inconsistent way of handling the Norwegian backed peace process initiated by UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe four years ago.

Fears of war returning to the island after four years of cease- fire between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels and the government have been heightened following last week's suicide assassination attempt on Army Commander Sarath Fonseka by the rebels. More... Discuss this story
Published: Tue May 2 20:15:24 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Scandinavian monitors climb down on Lanka killings charge, May 2. Colombo, May. 2 (PTI): The Scandinavians monitoring Sri Lanka's ceasefire today climbed down from an allegation that government forces may have been responsible for extrajudicial killings of civilians. The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) said it was "clarifying" a statement issued Saturday which virtually held government forces responsible for extrajudicial killings... Back to the top

Lanka sent Pak its arms wishlist, May 2. NEW DELHI, MAY 2: While India grapples with limited options to somehow save the ceasefire agreement in Sri Lanka, a desperate Colombo is gradually looking away, and has approached Pakistan for defence supplies after India dragged its feet for reasons rooted in domestic Tamil politics... Back to the top

Gunmen storm Sri Lankan newspaper office, kill staffer, injure 2 others
Associated Press, Tue May 2, 2006 11:28 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Gunmen stormed into a newspaper office in northern Sri Lanka - on Tuesday and opened fire, killing an editorial manager and seriously wounding two others, the editor said... Back to the top

Bombs, curfew spell kiss of death for normal life in Sri Lankan ..., May 1, 2006. There's nothing quite like a bloody bombing followed by a strict night curfew to deliver the kiss of death to normal day-to-day life in a town, as residents of Trincomalee will testify... Back to the top

Breakaway Sri Lankan rebels say they attacked mainstream Tamil Tigers, killing 8
Associated Press, Tue May 2, 2006 08:06 EDT . CHRIS BRUMMITT - Associated Press Writer - TRINCOMALEE, Sri Lanka - (AP) A breakaway rebel faction said Tuesday it attacked a mainstream Tamil Tiger guerrilla camp in northeastern Sri Lanka - , killing eight of the group's fighters in the latest violence threatening a return to civil war... Back to the top

LTTE asserts right to use sea violating truce pact, May 2, 2006.
PK Balachandran
Colombo, May 2, 2006 In a clear bid to escalate confrontation with the Sri Lankan government and avoid going for peace talks in Geneva, the LTTE has decided to use the sea to transport its cadres in its own vessels, and with its own armed escort, in violation of the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) of February 2002... Back to the top

There's no armed resolution to Sri Lanka's ethnic strife - Interview with Gen.Kalkat
GulfNews, May 2. New Delhi: It seems to be a season of trouble in India's neighbourhood... Back to the top

Sri Lankan Peace Talks May Not Resume Soon -Truce Monitors
Associated Press, May 1. COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Sri Lanka's government and Tamil Tiger rebels might not resume peace talks soon, a European cease-fire monitor said Monday, as soaring violence between the two sides threatened a return to civil war... Back to the top

Tamil Tiger rebels blame military for attack on camp, say 1 civilian wounded
Associated Press, Tue May 2, 2006 05:50 EDT . CHRIS BRUMMITT - Associated Press Writer - TRINCOMALEE, Sri Lanka - (AP) Tamil Tiger rebels accused the Sri Lankan military of shelling one of their camps on Tuesday, wounding one person, a day after a suspected rebel blast killed five people in the latest violence to threaten the four-year-old cease-fire... Back to the top

Future of Sri Lanka, May 02, 2006, 08:20 EDT. Recently, Bhuvana, a woman from Sri Lanka, the wife of a general manager of a leading telecom company there, asked me whether war was possible in her country? I had said categorically 'yes' and quoted my past predictions... Back to the top

The bloody mosaic of Sri Lanka, May 2. Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera will be in Delhi on May 7 to meet with the top Indian leadership in the wake of the dastardly suicide-bomber attack on the island nation’s Army Chief, General Sarath Fonseka in Colombo on April 25... Back to the top

Sri Lanka is not a workers’ paradise anymore, May 2. AS I drove past Colombo’s Hyde Park Corner on the May Day morning, the place, which was once synonymous with the struggle of Sri Lanka’s labour movement, was desolate... Back to the top

Sri Lanka tracks suicide bomber s contacts, May 02, 2006, 08:25 EDT. Colombo, Apr 29: Sri Lankan police have reconstructed the face of the female suicide bomber who tried to assassinate the country's army chief, but it was not medically proved if she was indeed pregnant as she had claimed... Back to the top

Sri Lanka s war battered north fears more violence, May 02, 2006, 08:15 EDT. Support for the rebels, who want Jaffna as part of a Tamil homeland and whose leader Velupillai Prabhakaran hails from the town, is seen as strong... Back to the top

S.Lanka Tigers say shelled as violence simmers, May 02, 2006, 08:15 EDT. Local police said it might instead be a clash between the Tigers and breakaway faction the Karuna group, which the rebels say is government backed... Back to the top

Sri Lanka violence highlights difficulties in ending one of Asia's bloodiest wars
Associated Press, Mon May 1, 2006 23:41 EDT . CHRIS BRUMMITT - Associated Press Writer - TRINCOMALEE, Sri Lanka - (AP) Subedra pulled back the blanket covering his mother's bloody corpse and kissed her face, wailing in grief... Back to the top

Canadian Tamils welcome continued action against LTTE.
Roy Edwards reporting from Toronto, May 1. First came the ban. Then came the raids. Days after the Canadian federal government listed LTTE as a proscribed organization, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) assisted by the local and provincial police officers raided several offices of the World Tamil Movement (WTM) located in Toronto and Montreal... Back to the top

Tigers likely to accept Lanka govt flight offer, May 01, 2006, 17:51 EDT. COLOMBO: A top rebel official said on Monday that the LTTE was likely to accept the government's offer of a sea plane for hierarchical Tiger cadres to travel from the east to the northern rebel headquarters for a crucial internal meeting prior to peace talks with the government... Back to the top

Sri Lanka says rebel boats attack navy vessel, May 02, 2006, 08:25 EDT. COLOMBO: Suspected Tamil Tigers killed at least seven people in a mine blast and a shooting on Monday and the navy said it came under attack from the rebels' sea wing intensifying fears of a return to civil war... Back to the top

The Big Question: Is Sri Lanka once again on the brink of full-scale civil war?
Independent, may 1. Barely recovered from the 2004 tsunami, Sri Lanka appears to be sliding inexorably back towards civil war... Back to the top

Sri Lanka navy says attacked by rebel Sea Tigers, Mon May 1, 2006 7:43 AM BST6. By Lindsay Beck COLOMBO (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's navy said it came under attack from the Tamil Tigers' sea wing on Monday and at least four were killed in a separate claymore mine blast, the latest violence to raise fears of a return to civil war... Back to the top

LTTE attacks SL army posts in Trincomalee, Colombo, April 30, 2006|10:52 IST. The LTTE on Sunday fired artillery and mortar shells at Sri Lankan Army Forward Defence Lines (FDL) in two places on the Trincomalee coastline... Back to the top

LTTE maritime unit sophisticated and impressive, May 1. New Delhi, May 1 (IANS) Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger guerrillas have developed a 'sophisticated' maritime network and they must now be looking for ways to meet the challenges of the latest global maritime security regimes, an Indian scholar says... Back to the top

If This is Called Peace...
TIME, May 1. The one thing everyone remembers is how good-looking the assassin was... Back to the top

ANALYSIS-Latest S.Lanka violence makes war harder to avoid, May 1, 2006, 06:42 EDT. COLOMBO, May 1 (Reuters) - After a week in which Sri Lanka came to the brink of civil war faster than anyone thought possible, analysts and diplomats say that, while both sides say they want peace, rising violence could lead to open conflict... Back to the top

Sri Lanka hopes to attract 6 lakh tourists
com, 01 May . Hyderabad: Sri Lanka aims to attract one million tourists by 2010... Back to the top

Lankan expats hope ‘peace will prevail’ back home, 1 May, 2006. WHILE their homeland is on the brink of civil war, a number of Sri Lankans residing in Qatar cling to the hope that peace will prevail... Back to the top

Sri Lankan, largest foreign carrier to India, hikes airfares, 28 Apr 2006 . Colombo: SriLankan Airlines will raise its fuel surcharge on all Indian routes by 10 dollars from May 5, to partially offset galloping energy prices, the airline said today... Back to the top

SriLankan Airlines adds more direct flights to Middle East, May 1. All eight SriLankan Airlines' Middle East destinations will have a minimum of four flights per week from October 2006... Back to the top

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