The Lanka Academic

VOL. 7, NO. 237


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We have lost a great mathe- matician, engineer, scientist, an old timer of SLNet/LAcNet and a former LAcNet director. Pubudu Dayawansa (Daya) was instrumental in carrying out many LAcNet projects. He was responsible in setting up "Colombo Calling" a website that was designed to carry weekly articles from Sri Lankan Academic community and Human Rights activists. [ More...]
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
S.Lanka assures India on power sharing with Tamils
Reuters, November 30. NEW DELHI, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's president assured giant neighbour India on Wednesday that he was pushing for a power-sharing deal with the Tamil Tigers to help bring peace to the island despite signs of an escalating civil war.

President Mahinda Rajapakse's attempt to allay New Delhi's concerns over the worsening ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka came during talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the last day of a five-day visit to India.

"We have conveyed our longstanding position on the need for a negotiated political settlement that is acceptable to all sections of Sri Lankan society," Indian foreign ministry spokesman Navtej Sarna told reporters. More... Discuss this story
Published: Wed Nov 29 21:02:48 EST 2006

Tamil Tigers isolated in bid for own state in Sri Lanka
afp, November 29. COLOMBO (AFP) - A rebel bid for an independent Tamil state in Sri Lanka has run into outright international rejection with the United States leading calls for new peace talks and an end to bloodshed. Neither peace broker Norway nor regional power India offered any support to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), who appealed for international recognition for a renewed separatist struggle. More... Discuss this story
Published: Wed Nov 29 14:56:10 EST 2006 Back to the top

Tamil Tigers not withdrawing from cease-fire; Sri Lanka calls for peace talks
Associated Press, Wed November 29, 2006 00:57 EST . DILIP GANGULY Associated Press Writer COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels have not quit a truce despite calling it ``defunct,'' European cease-fire monitors said Wednesday, as the government called for renewed peace talks.

Thorfinnur Omarsson, a spokesman for the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission, said the Tigers assured truce officials they would not withdraw from the 2002 Norwegian-brokered cease-fire during a meeting in the rebel stronghold in Kilinochchi on Tuesday.

The truce ended two decades of civil war, but now only exists on paper, with more than 3,500 fighters and civilians killed in unsolved killings, mine blasts, suicide attacks, artillery exchanges, sea battles and air strikes this year, according to government figures.

Monitoring officials were told top rebel leader Vellupillai Prabhakaran called the cease-fire defunct ``mainly due to violations of the truce by the government, especially the closure of the A-9 highway,'' said Omarsson.

The A-9 highway _ closed by the military in August _ connects the northern Jaffna peninsula with the mainland. The rebels have refused to continue negotiations until the government reopens it.

Prabhakaran also said Monday that the rebels were recommencing their freedom struggle.

A Sri Lankan official said Wednesday the government is ready for peace talks.

``We hope they (rebels) return to the negotiating table as we believe this can be resolved through dialogue and negotiations,'' said Palitha Kohona, the chief of the Sri Lanka's Peace Secretariat, which is directly involved in the peace process.

Norwegian peace envoy Jon Hanssen-Bauer, an envoy of peace broker Erik Solheim, was scheduled to arrive in the Sri Lankan capital late Wednesday, said Kohona.

He will meet with government officials and is likely to visit the rebel leadership in the north.

Meanwhile on Wednesday, 85 vehicles carrying food and medicine reached rebel-held Vaharai village in eastern Batticaloa district to help nearly 36,000 ethnic Tamils trapped by fighting, military spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe said.

But he accused the rebels of using the time of the transport _ when government forces held their fire _ to building bunkers. ``The Tigers, taking advantage of the situation, resorted to construct and improve the defenses,'' Samarasinghe said.

On Tuesday, a convoy of 115 aid vehicles was turned back amid heavy shelling, which government and insurgents blamed each other for.

The rebels are fighting to create a separate homeland for Sri Lanka's 3.1 million minority ethnic Tamils, saying they can prosper only away from the domination of the Sinhalese majority. Previous peace talks that started after the truce have failed to resolve the issue.

The government says it is willing to give autonomy to areas where Tamils are in the majority, but rebels insist on sweeping changes that the government says will infringe on the country's sovereignty.

Discuss this story
Published: Wed Nov 29 04:00:32 EST 2006 Back to the top

Food convoys return from Sri Lanka s rebel held area, November 30, 2006. Some 38 lorries of a convoy of 119 lorries carrying food to the civilians trapped in a Tamil Tiger rebel held area in Sri Lanka's east returned to the government territory as the military charged the rebels of using truce to build bunkers and replenish cadres... Back to the top

India rebuffs LTTE statement, wants negotiated settlement, November 29. New Delhi, Nov 29. (PTI): Virtually rebuffing LTTE for declaring intentions to resume all-out armed campaign, India today emphasised the need for finding a negotiated settlement to Sri Lanka's problems... Back to the top

Norway denies giving television to Sri Lankan rebel leader
Associated Press, Wed November 29, 2006 05:52 EST . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Peace-broker Norway on Wednesday denied a report that it gave a six-foot (1.8 meter) television to Sri Lanka's reclusive rebel leader, who is said to like watching Hollywood movies and copy methods for attacks and assassinations... Back to the top

Sri Lanka: humanitarian convoy reaches Vakarai, 29 Nov 2006 . Colombo / Geneva (ICRC) A convoy of 35 trucks, organised by the Department of Essential Services in cooperation with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the United Nations reached the town of Vakarai, Batticaloa district of eastern Sri Lanka, in the early afternoon local time today The convoy brought 250 MT of food, water and other items such as tents, hygienic kits and medicines for distribution to more than 30,000 displaced people fleeing the fighting in the north of the district... Back to the top

Terrifying 'heroes' - Editorial
Washington Times, November 29. In his annual "Heroes' Day" statement, the leader of the terrorist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, Velupillai Prabhakaran, attempts to shift blame for the conflict that is tearing apart the small South Asian country away from his violent rebel group and onto the Sri Lankan government... Back to the top

PM seeks end to rights abuses in Lanka, 29 Nov, 2006 . NEW DELHI: Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday urged Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse to take steps to end rights abuses in the island and politically resolve the dragging ethnic conflict... Back to the top

US condemns LTTE for fuelling hostility, 29 Nov. WASHINGTON: The United States has condemned Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) for fuelling violence and hostility, while urging them and the Colombo government to honour their 2002 ceasefire agreement... Back to the top

Judge strikes president's authority to designate terrorist groups
Associated Press, Tue November 28, 2006 18:33 EST . Judge strikes president's authority to designate terrorist groups LINDA DEUTSCH AP Special Correspondent LOS ANGELES (AP) _ A federal judge has ruled that a portion of a post-Sept... Back to the top

Food convoy fails to reach Sri Lanka s rebel controlled area, November 29, 2006. More than 100 vehicles loaded with food failed to reach a Tamil Tiger controlled area in Sri Lanka's east on Tuesday due to the exchange of fire between the rebels and the government forces, said the military... Back to the top

Outrage over child soldiers in Sri Lanka, November 29. VAVUNIYA, SRI LANKA The Tamil Tiger rebels have long been known to use child soldiers in their extended campaign against the Sri Lankan government... Back to the top

Sri Lanka wants to know if Tamil Tigers have withdrawn from 4-year-old cease-fire
Associated Press, Tue November 28, 2006 02:56 EST . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Sri Lanka's government said on Tuesday it has asked peace broker Norway and European cease-fire monitors to find out if Tamil Tiger rebels have officially withdrawn from a four-year-old cease-fire, after their top leader called the pact ``defunct... Back to the top

Sri Lanka military, rebels battle in east after Tiger leader hints at renewed war
Associated Press, Tue November 28, 2006 04:44 EST . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Tamil Tiger rebels and Sri Lankan troops traded fire Tuesday, the military said, a day after the top rebel leader declared a 2002 cease-fire ``defunct,'' suggesting the insurgents would renew their violent struggle for an independent Tamil homeland... Back to the top

LTTE Sri Lanka must end use of force: Burns, 2006-11-28 . As Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse continues his visit to India, the United States is calling on both the LTTE and the Sri Lankan government to give up the use of force... Back to the top

Sri Lanka s ethnic conflict has no effect on Kandy: Mayor, Nov 28 . Dehradun, Nov 28 (IANS) Inviting Indian tourists to visit Kandy, that has the tooth of the Buddha as its most sacred relic, the city's visiting mayor said here that his country's ethnic conflict has had no direct effect on its functioning... Back to the top

Sri Lanka President rejects rebel war threat, November 28. The President of Sri Lanka has dismissed a threat by separatist rebels to renew their fight for an independent Tamil state... Back to the top

Sri Lankan government ridicules top Tamil rebel leader after he calls cease-fire defunct
Associated Press, Mon November 27, 2006 23:01 EST . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka - 's government on Tuesday ridiculed the top Tamil Tiger leader, saying he has lost touch with reality, after the separatist rebel urged the international community to recognize the bloody insurgency as a ``freedom struggle... Back to the top

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