The Lanka Academic

JULY 20, 2006 EST, USA
VOL. 7, NO. 105


Candidate for UN Secretary General from Sri Lanka.

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Ranil Manmohan discuss Lanka peace, Jul 21, 2006 Fri. New Delhi, July 20: The Sri Lankan peace process, which is under severe strain, today came up for discussion prominently as visiting Leader of Opposition Ranil Wickremsinghe met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and other leaders.

The former Sri Lankan Prime Minister is on a two-day trip here as part of on-going high level contacts between the two countries.

Besides the Prime Minister, he also met UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Minister of State for External Affairs E Ahamed.

"During the discussions, we have looked at his views on where the peace process is going in Sri Lanka and how he would think the parties can be brought back to a dialogue," External Affairs Ministry spokesman Navtej Sarna told reporters here. More... Discuss this story
Published: Thu Jul 20 21:59:33 EDT 2006

First convoy of Sri Lankans leave Lebanon, July 20, 2006 - 19:45 EDT. No.15/2006 - Geneva, 20 July 2006 – The first IOM convoy of Sri Lankan nationals being evacuated from Lebanon has left Beirut today for the Syrian capital, Damascus.

About 120 Sri Lankans out of 300 registered for urgent evacuation boarded three buses at the Sri Lankan embassy in the Lebanese capital. The buses, escorted by IOM staff, are expected to cross the border with Syria later today where they will be met by IOM staff from Damascus including a medical doctor.

Another convoy of IOM-chartered buses is scheduled to transport the remainder of the group early tomorrow, 21 July.

The vast majority of those being evacuated are single women employed as domestic workers. Most of them did not have travel documents and have had new papers made up for them. Upon arrival, the evacuees will overnight in Damascus before flying home to Sri Lanka on Friday on board an Air Lanka plane. More... Discuss this story
Published: Thu Jul 20 19:44:18 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Gunmen kill 2 Tamil civilians in northern Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Thu July 20, 2006 03:37 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Unidentified assailants fatally shot two Tamil civilians Thursday in northern Jaffna, officials and witnesses said, in the latest violence to hit the peninsula, the traditional home of Sri Lanka's minority Tamils.

One man was shot and killed in front of his shop by gunmen, said witnesses who did not want to be quoted by name, fearing reprisals. Separately, gunmen shot and killed another man in a different Jaffna neighborhood, said a police official, also speaking on condition of anonymity, as he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Officials said neither the motive for the killings nor the identity of the assailants were immediately known, but the separatist Tamil Tiger rebels often accuse a breakaway faction, allegedly backed by Sri Lankan military, for fatalities in the region.

Dozens of civilians have been killed in the recent months under shadowy circumstances in Sri Lanka's northeast, with each side blaming the other.

Also on Thursday, three members from of the rebels' auxiliary force were wounded when a roadside bomb exploded in a rebel-held area in the north, said TamilNet, a pro-rebel Web site. It accused government troops of carrying out the attack. Military Spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe denied the claim, saying that government troops do not go into rebel areas since it would constitute a violation of the cease-fire agreement.

A Norway brokered cease-fire in 2002 halted fighting between the government and the rebels, but spiraling violence have raised fears that the island nation may return to a full-blown civil war.

The Tamil Tigers, formally named the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, have fought the government since 1983 for a separate homeland for 3.2 million Tamils, saying they can only prosper away from 14 million Sinhalese majority.

More than 65,000 people were killed in the conflict before the truce. Discuss this story
Published: Thu Jul 20 07:27:53 EDT 2006 Back to the top

5 killed, 40 hurt as bus plunges off cliff near Sri Lankan capital
Associated Press, Thu July 20, 2006 07:07 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ At least five people were killed and 40 others injured Thursday when a passenger bus drove off a cliff near the Sri Lankan capital, police said... Back to the top

Evacuations shift into high gear as foreigners scramble to leave Lebanon
Associated Press, Wed July 19, 2006 15:01 EDT . ZEINA KARAM - Associated Press Writer - ``Nepal and Sri Lanka - have also requested for their citizens to be put on the ships... Back to the top

Sri Lanka May Leave Key Rate at 3 1/2-Year High on Inflation, July 20, 2006 - 19:45 EDT. July 21 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lanka's central bank, which increased its benchmark interest rate to a 3 1/2-year high in June, may leave it unchanged next week as it seeks to curb inflation without slowing economic growth... Back to the top

Colombo port strike enters 10 day; government urges unions to ..., 20 July 2006 13:22:02. July 20, 2006 (LBO) – Trade union action at Sri Lanka’s main harbour entered its 10th day Thursday, despite a court ruling to restrain striking workers... Back to the top

Police arrest alleged would-be Tamil Tiger suicide bomber
Associated Press, Wed July 19, 2006 03:45 EDT . Police arrest alleged would-be Tamil Tiger suicide bomber BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI Associated Press Writer COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ The Sri Lankan government announced on Wednesday the arrest of a would-be Tamil rebel suicide bomber and three accomplices who were allegedly to target VIPs in the southern Sinhalese heartland... Back to the top

Security Forces deny LTTE Peace Secretariat report - PRESS RELEASE, 20 july. Security Forces deny LTTE Peace Secretariat report. The Security Forces totally reject the LTTE Peace Secretariat's allegation that the Sri Lankan Security Forces are resorting to unlawful arrests of civilians in the North... Back to the top

Plane Turned Back, 2 in Custody
Associated Press, July 19. ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) _ Two Sri Lankans carrying suspected false passports were taken into custody and a commuter plane they had tried to board was sent back to Rochester's airport Wednesday morning because one of their bags was aboard, authorities said... Back to the top

China emerges as world's third-largest food aid donor; U.S. remains No. 1
Associated Press, Thu July 20, 2006 04:17 EDT . AUDRA ANG - Associated Press Writer - Most of China's aid went to hunger-stricken North Korea, its longtime communist ally, with the rest going to Liberia, Guinea Bissau, Sri Lanka - and a dozen other countries, according to the report... Back to the top

Tamil Tigers Say Sri Lankan All-Party Talks Are `Peace Posture'
bloomberg, July 20. (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lanka's rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam said all-party talks called by President Mahinda Rajapakse on a political settlement are a ``peace posture'' aimed at winning the support of the international community... Back to the top

Sweden sends delegation to Sri Lanka hoping to rescue cease-fire
Associated Press, Wed July 19, 2006 07:48 EDT . STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) _ A Swedish delegation has traveled to Sri Lanka in an effort to persuade Tamil Tiger rebels to drop demands for some foreign peace monitors to leave the tropical island nation, the Foreign Ministry said Wednesday... Back to the top

South Africa arrive in Sri Lanka, July 19, 2006. South Africa, led by their first black captain Ashwell Prince, arrived in Sri Lanka today for their brief two-Test series and a tri-series with India... Back to the top

European Union Ambassador to visit Sri Lanka Tiger rebels, July 19, 2006 - 06:50 EDT. special European Union (EU) Ambassador is to visit the Tamil Tiger territory in Sri Lanka's north later this week to have talks on the Tamil Tiger demand to exclude truce monitors representing EU nations from the international truce monitoring mission, the Sri Lankan government said in Colombo Wednesday... Back to the top

Vaiko asks Manmohan not to support Lankan army, July 19, 2006 - 23:00 EDT. NEW DELHI, JULY 19: The vocal supporter of the Tamil cause in Sri Lanka, MDMK leader Vaiko, has repeated his demand that India should not give any military assistance to Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Civilian Dies And 4 Soldiers Wounded In Sri Lanka Blast, July 19. Colombo, Sri Lanka (AHN) - A civilian was killed and four Sri Lankan soldiers were injured in an explosion on Tuesday in Jaffna... Back to the top

New Sri Lanka Peace Effort, July 19, 2006 - 06:50 EDT. Sweden has launched a fresh effort to salvage Sri Lanka’s faltering ceasefire ahead of a Tamil rebel deadline for European Union peace monitors to leave the country... Back to the top

Sri Lanka s shipping ministers agrees to talk with unions, as port ..., July 19, 2006 - 14:00 EDT. July 19, 2006 (LBO) – Sri Lanka's ports minister Mangala Samaraweera said he was willing to negotiate with striking trade unions if they get back to work on Thursday... Back to the top

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