The Lanka Academic

 
AUGUST 24, 2006 EST, USA
 
QUAERE VERUM
 
VOL. 7, NO. 140

JAYANTHA DHANAPALA

Candidate for UN Secretary General from Sri Lanka.
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Rajapakse and Chandrika spar over party meeting invitation
gulfnews, August 25. Colombo: A long-standing dispute between President Mahinda Rajapakse and former president Chandrika Kumaratunga has erupted once again.

The recent row follows a remark made by Tourism Minister Anura Bandaranaike that his sister had been left out from an important function of their political party due to be held next month.

Rajapakse has sought an explanation from Bandaranaike over his remarks that Kumaratunga was to be left out from the 55th party convention due to be held on September 1 and now postponed to September 4.

Bandaranaike made his remarks in a hard-hitting letter to party secretary and minister Maithripala Sirisena, in which he accused him of despicable and abominable behaviour in not inviting former party leader and former president Kumaratunga. More... Discuss this story
Published: Thu Aug 24 23:42:44 EDT 2006


HL:Arrests of 6 Tamils from Canada leaves Tamil-Canadians shocked and concerned
Associated Press, Thu August 24, 2006 18:03 EDT . Brett Popplewell TORONTO (CP) _ The six Canadians accused of trying to obtain weapons on behalf of the Tamil Tigers rebel group are not a fair reflection of the more than 300,000 Tamils living in this country, Canada's largest Tamil community group said Thursday.

``The recent arrests ... have shocked and bewildered all of us,'' Kavita Pathinathar said Thursday at a news conference organized by the Canadian Tamil Congress.

``The members of the Tamil community are in unison in deploring the thought process that would have compelled someone to conceive this idea. In the strongest of terms possible, we categorically condemn this isolated incident.''

At least 14 people have been arrested in Canada and the United States for allegedly helping the Tamil Tigers in their escalating fight against the Sri Lankan military.

The group has been fighting for an independent state in Sri Lanka since 1983 for the 3.2 million ethnic Tamil minority.

In April, Canada added the Tamil Tigers to its list of terrorist organizations.

Six of the suspects are Canadian citizens and the RCMP arrested three of them in Canada this week at the request of U.S. authorities.

Ramanan Mylvaganam, 29, was picked up Tuesday at an apartment in Mississauga, Ont., Piratheepan Nadarajah, 30, was taken into custody Wednesday evening, while 26-year-old Suresh Sriskandarajah was arrested on a provisional warrant on Monday.

They all face possible extradition to the U.S.

American authorities allege three of the accused travelled to New York from Canada to try to buy weapons, including missiles, launchers and AK-47s. The men are also charged with fundraising and money laundering through ``front'' charitable organizations and U.S. bank accounts.

But David Poopalapillai, the national spokesperson for the Canadian Tamil Congress, said he doubts any money was raised from his community to help the Tigers in Sri Lanka.

``As far as we know there's no money collected for weapons,'' he said.

Poopalapillai said he and many Tamils are worried the recent arrests will hurt the community's efforts to raise aid money for those suffering from the bloody conflict between the Hindu Tamil minority and the Buddhist Sinhalese majority, which has left over 100,000 dead in Sri Lanka.

And Pathinathar said many are also worried that the Tamil community's reputation has been tarnished.

``We are concerned at the potential this could have against the entire community,'' she said.

Poopalapillai also pleaded with Canadians to learn more about the conflict in Sri Lanka to better understand the suffering of the Tamil people before assuming that the Tamil Tigers are synonymous with all Tamils.

He said he was surprised when he heard that Sarachandran, the former communications director for the Canadian Tamil Congress, was one of the suspects.

But he cautioned the public that one individual's actions should not tarnish the image of the entire organization.

``Most of our youngsters are pretty sensible ... it's an isolated incident. I would call (the suspects) loose cannons,'' he said. Discuss this story
Published: Thu Aug 24 20:56:36 EDT 2006 Back to the top


Sri Lanka air raids more rebel positions
People's Daily of China, Friday, August 25, 2006 - 00:00 EDT. Sri Lanka air force had successfully hit a Tamil Tiger sea wing base in the north of the island, defense officials said Thursday. "Selected targets were taken this morning at LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) sea Tiger base south of Kilinochchi", Brigadier Prasad Samarasinghe the military spokesman said. Sea Tigers are the Naval wing of the LTTE rebels and they keep engaging the government troops often in the north and eastern coastal areas. Samarasinghe said the Puliyankadu sea Tiger base had received a battering from the Israeli built Kfir bombings. The fighting which began in the northern Jaffna peninsula on August 11 had slowed down by Monday but both sides have lost over 500 of the combatants. The clashes are the worst since the Norwegian backed truce began in February 2002. The Defense officials here said that curfew in Jaffna was to be lifted this morning in order for the public to make their purchases of essentials. Some 45,000 civilians are faced with scarcities of essential since fighting began and a government vessel under the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) supervision is now on its way to the northern city, government relief officials said. The ship carrying 3800 tons of food is due to arrive in Jaffna on Friday. Meanwhile the ICRC said that it was arranging a ferry to evacuate what is believed to be over 100 of foreign nationals trapped in Jaffna after the fighting began. The Canadian, British and Norwegian passport holders are among those to be evacuated, the ICRC official Yvonne Dunton said. Both the LTTE rebels and the government have blamed each other for starting Jaffna clashes. The fighting in Jaffna was a culmination of violence on a daily basis since the beginning of December 2005. The clashes have occurred despite pleas from the international community on both sides to return to the negotiating table. The Norwegian backed process came to be stalled in April 2003 after six rounds of direct talks. More than 64,000 people were killed in the conflict since it began in the mid 1980s. The LTTE rebels are aiming to set up a separate homeland for the minority Tamils in the north and east of the island claiming discrimination at the hands of the majority Sinhalese community. More...
Published: Thu Aug 24 23:55:15 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Departing ceasefire monitor chief slams EU in gloomy Sri Lanka outlook
Yahoo News, Friday, August 25, 2006 - 00:00 EDT. Brigadier General Ulf Henricsson wrote a memo to the European Union more than a month before May's ban was imposed warning of a rise in violence and attacks in the capital Colombo if the EU carried out its threat... Back to the top

Tamil community fears backlash over arrests
CTV, August 24. The group that represents Canada's Tamil community fears a backlash following the arrests this week of men alleged to be linked to the Tamil Tigers... Back to the top

Two more Canadians arrested in Tamil affair
Globe and Mail, August 24. TORONTO -- Two more Canadian men have been arrested in alleged plots to obtain high-tech equipment and weapons for Tamil Tiger guerrillas in Sri Lanka, bringing the total number of arrests to six... Back to the top

Sri Lankan displaced are distraught
hindu, August 25. KANTHALE (TRINCOMALEE DISTRICT): With no end in sight to the over one month old stepped up hostilities between the Sri Lanka military and the LTTE, over 50,000 displaced Muslims from Muttur town languish in the makeshift tent camps dotting this sleepy town... Back to the top

Jaffna the fountainhead of Tamil separatism
Dawn, August 25. Sri Lankan troops and Tigers are locked in fierce fighting over Jaffna, but analysts say the arid peninsula is of little real value to either party except as a symbol... Back to the top

Davis: I've seen no evidence terrorist group funded Sri Lanka trip
Associated Press, Thu August 24, 2006 18:48 EDT . DENNIS CONRAD - Associated Press Writer - WASHINGTON (AP) Rep... Back to the top

Sri Lankan air force strikes rebel sea base as government discusses peace
Associated Press, Thu August 24, 2006 03:05 EDT . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka - 's air force launched strikes on a Tamil Tiger rebel sea base in the northeast Thursday in an operation the military described as ``successful... Back to the top

Rebel group funded congressman's trip to Sri Lanka, sources say
KRT Wire, August 24. WASHINGTON - Illinois congressman Danny Davis and an aide took a trip to Sri Lanka last year that was paid for by the Tamil Tigers, a group that the U... Back to the top

LTTE denies links with U.S. arrests
The Hindu, Wednesday August 23, 2006 - 17:24 EDT. COLOMBO: The LTTE has maintained that it has no connection with the eight persons arrested by the U... Back to the top

Aid agency worker shot to death in eastern Sri Lanka , military says
Associated Press, Thu August 24, 2006 07:42 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Suspected Tamil Tiger rebels Thursday fatally shot an ethnic Sinhalese man working for a New Zealand-funded aid agency in troubled eastern Sri Lanka - , the Defense Ministry said... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Lifts Curfew in Areas of Jaffna as Fighting Eases
bloomberg, August 24. Aug. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lanka's government lifted curfew restrictions in areas of the northern Jaffna peninsula it controls as fighting eased with the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. The measure will allow aid supplies to reach civilians in the area, the government said in a statement on the Defense Ministry's Web site... Back to the top

Departing ceasefire monitor chief slams EU in gloomy Sri Lanka outlook
afp, August 24. COLOMBO (AFP) - The outgoing chief monitor of Sri Lanka's crumbling ceasefire criticised the EU for banning the Tamil Tiger rebels and said his warnings of a violent "worst case Brigadier General Ulf Henricsson wrote a memo to the European Union more than a month before May's ban was imposed warning of a rise in violence and attacks in the capital Colombo if the EU carried out its threat... Back to the top

Besieged Sri Lankans await aid
Reuters, August 24. COLOMBO (Reuters) - The first Red Cross ship carrying food approached Sri Lanka's Jaffna peninsula after a two week siege, but a government demand on Thursday that Tamil Tiger rebels vacate a key area was likely to prolong the fighting... Back to the top

'Never speak Tamil'- Student couriers instructed on how to smuggle contraband under 'teddies and chocolates'
Toronto Sun, August 24. Waterloo Suresh" Sriskandarajah allegedly used student couriers to smuggle war-related items to the Tamil Tigers under the noses of Sri Lankan security forces... Back to the top

Israeli high-tech fugitive sought by U.S. escaped to Sri Lanka : Report
Associated Press, Thu August 24, 2006 02:14 EDT . - - JERUSALEM (AP) An Israeli newspaper reported Thursday that Kobi Alexander, the voicemail technology fugitive wanted in the U... Back to the top

Sri Lanka 's battlefields quiet as government discusses peace process
Associated Press, Thu August 24, 2006 01:45 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka - 's government would agree to a new cease-fire with separatist Tamil rebels only if it is offered personally by the insurgents' elusive leader, a newspaper reported Thursday, as fighting between the two sides appeared to be easing... Back to the top

Group funnels dough through charities
Toronto Sun, August 24. Canada is one of the top fundraising nations for the Tamil Tigers who earn enough here to fund their ongoing battle at home, U... Back to the top

Accused was Waterloo's Jekyll and Hyde: Feds
Toronto Sun, August 24. "Waterloo Suresh" Sriskandarajah has two faces, according to the FBI... Back to the top

From tsunami aid to terror charges
toronto star, August 24. A year and a half ago, Sathajhan Sarachandran and Suresh Sriskandarajah travelled to Sri Lanka with a delegation of 26 Ontario students to help victims of the Asian tsunami... Back to the top

HL:RCMP arrest two more Cdn. men in alleged Tamil Tiger weapons plot
Associated Press, Thu August 24, 2006 00:28 EDT . Jennifer Graham - - They face charges of conspiring to buy weapons to allegedly help the Tamil Tigers in their escalating fight for a separate homeland in Sri Lanka - ... Back to the top

Tigers fighting on Canuck cash?
Toronto Sun, August 24. The FBI fingers Canada as a hub of arms buying and the major source of illegal fundraising for Sri Lankan rebels, according to U... Back to the top

ICRC to evacuate foreigners from northern Sri Lanka , as troops, rebels trade fire
Associated Press, Wed August 23, 2006 06:11 EDT . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The Red Cross said Wednesday it would send a ferry to help evacuate hundreds of foreign nationals trapped by fighting in northern Sri Lanka - , as activists expressed alarm over a Catholic priest who disappeared after witnessing killings at a church... Back to the top

Feds probe Maryland doctor's Sri Lankan relief group
Associated Press, August 23. DAVID DISHNEAU Associated Press Writer HAGERSTOWN, Md... Back to the top

No End in Sight Sri Lanka's civil war exacts a mounting toll.


News Week International Edition, Wednesday August 23, 2006 - 17:32 EDT. Aug. 23, 2006 - The news from Sri Lanka could hardly be worse these days. Ever since guerrillas of the Tamil separatist group, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), and the Sri Lankan armed forces began fighting over an obscure irrigation canal on the island's eastern coast a month ago, the violence has kept escalating, making a mockery of the four-year-old ceasefire... Back to the top


Alleged plan to buy arms for Tamil rebels is thwarted
KnoxNews, August 23. When four young Canadian men jumped in a car and headed to the United States last week, they told border guards they were going to a bachelor party in Buffalo, N... Back to the top

Analysis: Tamil terror bust 'shows threat'
UPI, Wednesday August 23, 2006 - 13:40 EDT. WASHINGTON, Aug. 23 (UPI) -- The alleged efforts by U.S. and Canada-based supporters of the Tamil Tigers to buy weapons in New York represents an alarming departure from their traditional activities, which have been restricted to raising funds and political support... Back to the top

Sri Lanka government censures SLMM head
Munza Mushtaq in Colombo, August 23, 2006, 6.56 p.m.. The government has censured the head of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) Ulf Henricsson for making baseless allegations and wrongful implications that the government and security forces had barred the monitors from carrying out investigations into the murders of the 17 aid workers who were killed early this month, the Sunday Standard reported early this week... Back to the top

Sri Lanka: First time aid in ten days to Jaffna
Reuters, August 23. Colombo / Geneva (ICRC) A ship sailing under the flag of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) finally left the port of Colombo yesterday heading to Jaffna... Back to the top

Diplomats in new push to save Sri Lanka peace bid
Zee News, August 23. Colombo, Aug 22: Sri Lanka's key financial backers held talks with President Mahinda Rajapakse yesterday to try to salvage the island's collapsing ceasefire, officials said... Back to the top

Tamils Question Canada's Role in Sri Lankan Civil War, While the FBI Questions Canadian Tamils
Emabssy - Newss, August 23. Tamils demonstrate for Canadian government condemnation of Sri Lankan bombing of civilians while the FBI says it has broken a plot to smuggle arms to the Tamil Tigers... Back to the top

Sri Lanka atrocity tales rage but proof impossible
Reuters, August 23. COLOMBO, Aug 23 (Reuters) - Dozens of schoolgirls killed by the air force, Muslims massacred by Tamil Tiger rebels, civilians targeted by both sides... Back to the top

India deflects Tamil calls to mediate in Sri Lanka
Reuters, August 23. CHENNAI, India, Aug 23 (Reuters) - Their black gowns flapping in the traffic, scores of Indian lawyers form a "human chain" around the red-brick court building while other protesters burn Sri Lankan flags or stage symbolic fasts... Back to the top

Tamil suspects said they were going to stag party
CTV.ca, August 23. The four young Canadian men arrested on suspicion of conspiring to buy weapons on behalf of the Tamil Tigers told security officials they were going to a bachelor party in Buffalo, N... Back to the top

Catholic priest missing in northern Sri Lanka ; troops, rebels trade fire
Associated Press, Wed August 23, 2006 02:45 EDT . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The Red Cross said Wednesday it would dispatch a ferry to northern Sri Lanka - to evacuate foreigners amid fierce fighting, as activists expressed alarm over a Catholic priest who disappeared after witnessing disputed deaths... Back to the top

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