The Lanka Academic

AUGUST 27, 2006 EST, USA
VOL. 7, NO. 143


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
Police step up searches in Colombo
DPA, August 273. Colombo, Aug 27 (DPA) Police have stepped up searches around Sri Lanka's capital after the detection of explosives and the arrest of 18 Tamils suspected to have links with rebels, police said Sunday.

Police were carrying out searches of vehicles entering Colombo fearing that Tamil rebels may carry out attacks in the city while their cadres are under pressure from the security forces in the north and eastern provinces.

Inspector General of Police Chandra Fernando said the government was seeking sophisticated equipment to make vehicle searches more efficient. More... Discuss this story
Published: Sun Aug 27 17:28:18 EDT 2006

Foreign nationals flee Sri Lanka 's north as shelling in the east leaves 5 soldiers wounded
Associated Press, Sun August 27, 2006 04:25 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - TRINCOMALEE, Sri Lanka - (AP) Clutching pillows and hastily gathered belongings, the first foreign nationals to be evacuated from Sri Lanka - 's besieged northern Jaffna Peninsula arrived Sunday at an eastern port. Much of the fighting has centered around Trincomalee and Jaffna Peninsula, which Sri Lanka - 's ethnic Tamils consider the heart of their culture, but which is controlled by the government.

The Tigers made a major push to retake the peninsula on Aug. 11 and an 11-day battle resulted in the deaths of about 650 security forces and insurgents, according to the military.

Although fighting has largely subsided in recent days, the peninsula remains virtually isolated, with private road, sea and air access cut off, and its 500,000 residents under 20-hour curfews.

Most of the 161 passengers arriving in Trincomalee Sunday were international aid workers and ethnic Tamils with foreign passports who were visiting friends and family in Jaffna at the start of the fighting.

``I have never seen my town like this before. We had no link to the outside world. We didn't even know who was dying,'' Kadir Selvarani, an ethnic Tamil who has spent the last 20 years in Britain, told The Associated Press as she disembarked from the ferry.

The ICRC hopes to send several more passenger ferries to Jaffna, where there are an estimated 800 foreign passport holders hoping to escape the fighting.

Selvarani said she had lived through a similar experience in 1987, in the early days of the Tiger insurgency, when the rebels carried out guerrilla-style ambushes on security forces.

``This time, the ammunition is different: they are using shells and bombs.''

Although relieved to have escaped, Selvarani said she was concerned about those left behind.

``I am so sad about the plight of the people in Jaffna. They are slowly dying of fear,'' she said.

Clutching hold of her mother's hand, Nila Dayanadi, 9, said the nightly bombing and artillery raids in Jaffna had scared her. ``I cried a little bit,'' she said shyly.

The ferry had traveled more than 12 hours through the night along the teardrop-shaped island's eastern coast after receiving security assurances from the military and the Tamil Tigers, who are notorious for suicide attacks against the Sri Lankan navy.

Many people were seasick and emerged from the ferry looking tired, disheveled but incredibly relieved. Four buses would transport them to Colombo, from where many were hoping to get flights back home, ICRC Trincomalee head, Yvonne Dunton, said.

For Thomotharam Arumugan, 81, it was a harrowing reminder of an earlier escape from Jaffna.

In 1991, as the government and Tigers battled for control of the Tamil-majority peninsula, he and his family fled deep into rebel-held territory, fearing retribution by the Sinhalese-dominated security forces. Four years later, they moved to New Zealand.

``It was a narrow escape,'' he said.

Associated Press writer Bharatha Mallawarachi in Colombo contributed to this report.

Published: Sun Aug 27 06:24:46 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Sri Lankans take tsunami warnings into their own hands
Reuters, August 27. PERALIYA, Sri Lanka (Reuters) - In a small room up a rickety staircase in a tsunami-damaged building on Sri Lanka's south coast, Roshan Waduthantri sits glued to an earthquake warning Web site and monitors cable TV channels.

"Look, there has been a quake in the Scotia Sea," he said, monitoring U.S. Geological Survey Web site "We monitor all day and all night, and if there is a major earthquake, we tell the local community."

More than 1- years have passed since a tsunami left 230,000 people dead or missing across Asia, including 35,000 in Sri Lanka.

But there is still no pan-Asian tsunami warning system.

So residents in the southern town of Peraliya, where around 1,000 people died when a passenger train was swamped by the tsunami and dozens of locals were swept to their deaths, have taken matters into their own hands. More... Discuss this story
Published: Sun Aug 27 23:08:54 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Failure to get missiles sealed LTTE's fate
hindustantimes, August 26. It is now clear that the LTTE's daring incursions into the Trincomalee and Jaffna districts of Sri Lanka in July-August were blunted by the repeated use of supersonic aircraft by the Sri Lankan Air Force (SLAF)... Back to the top

Sri Lanka seeks bigger role for India in conflict resolution: Rajpakse
Newindexpress, August 27. NEW DELHI: Sri Lanka has sought India's help in the seas around Jaffna and Trincomalee to prevent terrorist arms being smuggled into that country and pushed for a "bigger role" by New Delhi towards resolution of its ethnic conflict... Back to the top

Apollo ownership battle in Sri Lanka gets murky
ZeeNews, August 26. Colombo, Aug 27: The Colombo Stock Exchange has sought clarifications from the Sri Lankan unit of Apollo on the tax incentives enjoyed by the company amid a deepening hostile takeover battle over the hospital... Back to the top

British GP charged over rocket sales
Sunday Times, August 27. A BRITISH doctor has been arrested in New York, charged with aiding Sri Lankan terrorists by facilitating the purchase of American rockets and British submarine technology... Back to the top

Don't provoke Tigers
Tornto Star, August 26. CALGARY -- This week's arrest of six Canadians of Tamil origin on terrorism charges reminds me of Sir Peter Ustinov's brilliant maxim: "Terrorism is the war of the poor, and war is the terrorism of the rich... Back to the top

Displaced drift back to Sri Lanka conflict zone
Washington Post, Sunday August 27, 2006 - 07:16. PALAI NAGAR, Sri Lanka (Reuters) - Hundreds of displaced villagers are venturing back to inspect homes shelled during fighting between Tamil rebels and the army in northeast Sri Lanka, and 20-year-old Ripan Rimas made an unexpected discovery... Back to the top

Sri Lankan army and Tamil Tiger rebels exchange mortars and artillery, military says
Associated Press, Sun August 27, 2006 00:06 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lankan army and separatist Tamil Tiger rebels Sunday exchanged artillery and mortar fire in the volatile east, said official... Back to the top

New ceasefire head prepares for Sri Lanka's mission impossible
AFP, August 27. COLOMBO (AFP) - The new head of Sri Lanka's truce monitors takes over a team cut by nearly half this week amid warnings by his predecessor of "mission impossible" to satisfy both sides in the vicious separatist conflict... Back to the top

Ferry arrives with foreign nationals from besieged northern Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Sat August 26, 2006 23:44 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - TRINCOMALEE, Sri Lanka - (AP) A ferry carrying about 150 foreign nationals trapped by fighting in fighting in Sri Lanka - 's northern Jaffna Peninsula arrived at a port in the east on Sunday... Back to the top

Police thwart major attack on Sri Lankan capital, explosion kills 6 in the north
Associated Press, Sat August 26, 2006 07:50 EDT . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Police on Saturday found a large weapons cache hidden in a house on the outskirts of the Sri Lankan capital, and arrested 17 people suspected of planning a major attack... Back to the top

Sri Lanka envoy defends stance
The Gazette (Montreal) 2006, August 26, 2006 . Sri Lanka's high commissioner in Ottawa yesterday denied he's spreading "dirty propaganda" by saying charitable fundraising by Canadian Tamils ends up supporting terrorism back home by the banned Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam... Back to the top

Sri Lanka 's Tamil Tigers release policeman held captive for 11 months
Associated Press, Sat August 26, 2006 00:52 EDT . CASSIE BIGGS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Tamil Tiger rebels on Saturday released a policeman held for over 10 months in northern Sri Lanka - as a ``goodwill gesture,'' monitors of Sri Lanka - 's crumbling four-year-old cease-fire said... Back to the top

RCMP officers followed suspect to wedding 'Procurement cell'
National Post, August 26. Last Saturday evening, hours after the FBI arrested several Canadians allegedly trying to buy anti-aircraft missiles in New York, Suresh Sriskandarajah attended a wedding in Scarborough, Ont... Back to the top

Besieged Sri Lanka enclave sees business as usual
Reuters, Sunday, August 26, 2006 - 11:10 EDT. By Anuruddha Lokuhapuarachchi JAFFNA, Sri Lanka, Aug 26 (Reuters) - Being cut off by heavy fighting is nothing new for residents of Sri Lanka's besieged northern Jaffna peninsula... Back to the top

Pakistan 'guiding' Sri Lanka's war: Indian expert
IRNA, August 26. A group of Pakistan Air Force officers stationed in Colombo have been guiding the Sri Lankan military in carrying out air-mounted operations against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), a former counter-terrorism chief of India's external intelligence, B Raman, says... Back to the top

Tamil Tigers and the Canadian connection
Globe and Mail, August 26. It's an American-led investigation, but nine of the arrested suspects are now known to have links to Canada... Back to the top

Sri Lanka President gets parties' boost amid war with rebels
People's Daily of China, Sunday, August 26, 2006 - 00:20 EDT. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse, who is facing aggression from the rebels, is presented with a parliamentary boost from two Tamil minority parties, according to parliamentary officials on Friday... Back to the top

Waterloo connection
The Record, August 26. An alleged terrorist supporter from Waterloo vowed to work toward a free Tamil nation and posted photographs of rebel soldiers on his website... Back to the top

S.Lanka's Jaffna gets aid, rebels release prisoner
Reuters, August 26. JAFFNA, Sri Lanka (Reuters) - Officials distributed aid on Sri Lanka's besieged Jaffna peninsula on Saturday and foreign nationals were being evacuated as two Red Cross vessels docked there after weeks of fighting cut off the region... Back to the top

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