The Lanka Academic

VOL. 7, NO. 158


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 Lankan president, opposition leader hold talks
Xinhua, September 12. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse and his main rival the opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe met Monday to probe the possibility of two main political forces working together in resolving the ethnic separatist conflict, political sources said.

The two leaders were engaged in talks lasting over an hour and the two leaders agreed to let committees comprising of five members in their respective political parties to formulate a program.

Such a program would then form the basis of reaching consensus in trying to solve the country's ethnic separatist armed conflict.

The meeting followed a request from the opposition United National Party (UNP) leader Wickremesinghe to Rajapakse. More... Discuss this story
Published: Mon Sep 11 21:35:02 EDT 2006

Paralysis On Sri Lanka Front - Opinion
OutLookIndia, September 12. Ever since Mr Mahinda Rajapakse took over as the President of Sri Lanka in November, 2005, there has been a steady deterioration in the ground situation in Sri Lanka due to the adoption of a strong line by the government as well as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) towards each other.

The hardline adopted by the government has been influenced by its perception that the LTTE has been weakened by its inability to procure fresh stocks of arms and ammunition, particularly anti-aircraft weapons and ammunition, to replenish its losses in the fighting with the Sri Lankan Army before the cease-fire went into force in February, 2002, and due to the tsunami in December, 2004. More... Discuss this story
Published: Mon Sep 11 23:48:12 EDT 2006 Back to the top

148 combatants killed in 5 days of heavy fighting, Sri Lankan military says
Associated Press, Mon September 11, 2006 04:06 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lankan forces and Tamil Tiger rebels exchanged mortar and artillery fire across their northern front lines on Monday, as the death toll from five days of heavy fighting rose to 148, the military said.

Government soldiers have advanced up to a kilometer (0.6 mile) into rebel territory in Muhamalai village on the northern Jaffna peninsula and captured the guerrillas' forward defense line, an official at the Media Center for National Security said.

Rebels fired mortar and artillery shells at the troops as they sought Monday to consolidate their gains, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity, citing agency rules.

Military spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe said the number of government troops killed in the area since Thursday rose by five overnight to 33. The fighting also wounded 132 soldiers, he said.

The Defense Ministry's Web site said at least 115 Tamil Tigers had been killed a claim the rebels denied.

``Reports and monitored technical sources claimed that troops have inflicted heavy casualties and damage'' to the rebels, the ministry said.

Samarasinghe said the army had captured a forward bunker line used by the rebels to fire mortars at government troops.

But rebel official Seevarathnam Puleedevan denied that the Tigers' bunkers had been overrun and said they continued to resist the government troops. He said only six rebel fighters had died and 13 others were wounded.

Both sides are known to exaggerate each other's death tolls. Journalists have not been allowed to enter the area of fighting, and it was not possible to verify the casualty claims.

On Thursday, the rebels began firing artillery at troops manning defense lines in Muhamalai at the base of the army-controlled Jaffna peninsula, prompting military operations aimed at destroying the rebels' artillery positions, Samarasinghe said.

The fighting came less than a week after the army claimed to have routed the Tigers from Sampur, a rebel-held village in the northeast.

While neither side has formally withdrawn from a 2002 cease-fire, weeks of escalating battles along borders separating rebel- and government-held territory in the northeast have left it in tatters.

The Tigers have threatened retaliation and a resumption of war unless the army withdraws from Sampur.

The Tigers, who fought a 19-year war against the government until the cease-fire, want to carve out a separate state for predominantly Hindu Tamils, citing decades of discrimination by the mostly Buddhist Sinhalese majority.

The conflict cost the lives of about 65,000 people before the truce.

Hundreds of combatants and civilians have been killed and about 220,000 displaced since April, when the military launched air strikes on rebel territory in northeast Trincomalee in retaliation for a failed suicide attempt on the life of a top-ranking general.

Discuss this story
Published: Mon Sep 11 04:32:58 EDT 2006 Back to the top

Related News Stories
163 killed in Lanka-LTTE fighting  - Hindustan Times
Over 140 killed in Jaffna fighting  - hindustan times
Sri Lankan troops, Tamil rebels in heavy fighting for fifth day; military deaths at 33  - Associated Press

Fifty Tamil youth reported missing within last month alone in Sri Lanka 's embattled north
Associated Press, Mon September 11, 2006 06:40 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ At least 50 ethnic Tamil youths and young adults have disappeared in Sri Lanka's embattled northern Jaffna district in the last month, a human rights official said Monday... Back to the top

Sri Lankan troops, LTTE in heavy fighting
The Hindu, Monday September 11, 2006 - 08:00 EDT. Colombo, Sept. 11 (AP): Sri Lankan forces and Tamil Tiger rebels exchanged mortar and artillery fire across their northern front lines on Monday, as the military death toll rose to 33 in five days of heavy clashes, an official said.

Government soldiers have advanced up to a kilometer (0.6 mile) into rebel territory in Muhamalai village on the northern Jaffna peninsula and captured their forward defense line, an official at the Media Center for National Security said... Back to the top

Tamil families take to the sea as they flee horror of a savage war
Times online., September 12. WITH their worlds wrapped up in plastic bags, thousands of Sri Lankan refugees are risking their lives by crossing the Palk Strait to India to escape the fighting ravaging their homeland... Back to the top

WFP operational update: Sri Lanka
Reuters, Monday September 11, 2006 - 18:52 EDT. Following recent clashes between government forces and Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka, WFP plans to provide basic food rations to all 240,000 people who have been driven from their homes by shelling, mortar attacks and random violence... Back to the top

Explanation sought from Bandaranaike
Gulf News, September 11. President Mahinda Rajapakse is to launch a two-pronged investigation into the recent conduct of Tourism Minister Anura Bandaranaike following comments made both in Parliament and outside... Back to the top

Tigers accuse Sri Lanka of scuttling Norway peace bid, toll mounts
Yahoo News - AFP, Sunday September 2006 - 11:20 EDT. COLOMBO (AFP) - Troops and Tamil Tigers fought fierce battles in northern Sri Lanka, leaving scores killed, officials said as the rebels accused Colombo of ignoring moves by Norway to end the latest bloodshed... Back to the top

28 Sri Lankan soldiers killed in 3 days of fighting with northern rebels
Associated Press, Sun September 10, 2006 01:50 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka - 's military has lost 28 soldiers in three days of stiff artillery and mortar attacks as it advanced slowly toward Tamil Tiger rebel strongholds in northern Sri Lanka - , officials said Sunday... Back to the top

Spoilsport Karunanidhi
hindustan times, September 11. Tamil political circles in Colombo feel that the indefinite postponement of the meeting between the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) MPs and the Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh in New Delhi may have been at least partially due to the intense rivalry between two top Tamil Nadu politicians... Back to the top

419 'dissapeared' in Jaffna
bbc, September 11. The Human Rights Commission in Sri Lanka (HRCSL) says it has received 419 complaints on disappearances in Jaffna peninsular since December last year... Back to the top

Sri Lanka may get help to probe killings, disappearances
Yahoo News, Sunday September 10, 2006 - 08:22EDT. New Delhi, Sep 10 (IANS) The international community overseeing Sri Lanka's bloodied peace process is ready to assist the country investigate the increasing number of killings and disappearances... Back to the top

Bomb blast kills three soldiers in northern Sri Lanka , military says
Associated Press, Sun September 10, 2006 02:57 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Suspected ethnic Tamil rebels set off a roadside bomb in northern Sri Lanka - on Sunday, killing three soldiers, the military said... Back to the top

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