The Lanka Academic

 
DECEMBER 5, 2006 EST, USA
 
QUAERE VERUM
 
VOL. 7, NO. 243

TLA FORUM

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IN MEMORIAM

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...]
TLA FEATURE CORNER
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 Lanka to debate banning Tigers
cnn, December 06. COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) -- Sri Lanka's Cabinet is set to hold a crucial meeting Wednesday to decide whether to ban the separatist Tamil Tiger rebels -- a move rebel supporters say would effectively scupper the peace process.

State-run media said Wednesday the government was left with no other choice but to take strong action.

"...The State is compelled to make some hard choices. Prime among these issues is whether the government should reclamp the ban on the Tigers. Another is whether the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) should be rigorously reinforced," Daily News said in an editorial. More... Discuss this story
Published: Tue Dec 5 22:16:26 EST 2006


Sri Lanka panel may recommend devolution
hindu.com, Wednesday, Dec 06, 2006. -
B. Muralidhar Reddy

COLOMBO: The multi-ethnic group of experts constituted by Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa to advise him on the resolution of the ethnic conflict in the island nation is expected to present its "preliminary" report on Wednesday.

Besides the group, Mr. Rajapaksa has also formed an All-Party Conference (APC) to evolve consensus on power-sharing and devolution. The APC is likely to give its report to the President by the middle of December. Consensus within the APC is not likely to pose a major problem particularly after the ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the main Opposition, United National Party (UNP), agreed on common approach to the ethnic question.

The ball would be firmly in the court of Mr. Rajapaksa to hasten the political process for resolution of the ethnic conflict once he is armed with the reports of the two groups. There is all-round clamour for an early political formula for power-sharing as most observers believe that absence of a credible devolution provides sustenance to the campaign against the state by outfits such as the Tamil Tigers.

More... Discuss this story
Published: Tue Dec 5 20:00:08 EST 2006 Back to the top


18 combatants, 2 civilians killed in Sri Lanka 's latest fighting
Associated Press, Tue December 5, 2006 01:28 EST . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lankan troops killed 16 Tamil Tigers in the country's volatile east, in fighting that also left two soldiers dead, the military said Tuesday. The separatist rebels killed two Muslims civilians in the north, police said.

The Media Center for National Security said the fighting began in the Vaharai region of Batticaloa district Monday and intermittent firing continued Tuesday.

Nineteen other soldiers were wounded, it said.

Batticaloa town is under government control, but the rebels have a presence in smaller towns, jungles and the countryside. The areas under government and rebel control are not properly demarcated, often leading to clashes.

There was no independent confirmation of the casualty details, but pro-rebel Web site, TamilNet, confirmed ``heavy fighting'' in the area.

Separately on Tuesday, police said Tamil Tigers shot dead two Muslims civilians in Vavuniya, the last government-held garrison town before rebel-held areas in north. Police officer G.M. Dharmaratne accused rebels of the killing and said they were investigating the motive.

Muslims are opposed to the rebels' demand for a homeland, because they also live in the areas which the rebels call the traditional homeland of the Tamils.

Also on Tuesday, a roadside bomb blast blamed on the rebels wounded two government-appointed security guards in the northern Anuradhapura district.

The Tigers have been fighting for over 20 years for an independent Tamil homeland in the northeast, citing decades of discrimination by the majority Sinhalese.

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

The latest round of peace talks held in Switzerland in October failed to make any progress in resolving the issue and relations between the two sides have since deteriorated.

A sharp spike in violence this year has killed at least 3,500 fighters and civilians, leaving a 2002 cease-fire in effect only on paper.

The Tiger's top leader last week called the Oslo-brokered cease-fire ``defunct,'' but the rebels later clarified they would abide by the truce. Discuss this story
Published: Tue Dec 5 03:56:17 EST 2006 Back to the top

Related News Stories
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Heavy fighting in east Sri Lanka  - bbc.co.uk

Sri Lanka likely to reinstate act aimed at preventing terror
taipeitimes.com, Dec 05, 2006. Sri Lanka is likely to reinstate an act aimed at preventing terrorism and may even ban the Tamil Tigers after a failed rebel assassination bid, the government said yesterday, steps analysts say could hamstring future peace efforts... Back to the top

The rationale behind Sri Lanka’s ties with Israel
khaleejtimes.com, 5 December 2006. A COLLEAGUE last week asked me why Sri Lankan Muslims were silent over a visible change in the government's Palestinian policy... Back to the top

Bug-borne fever infects more than 100,000 in Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Tue December 5, 2006 03:09 EST . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A fever spread by mosquitoes has infected more than 100,000 people in Sri Lanka - , an official said Tuesday... Back to the top

Japanese Embassy in Sri Lanka cancels ceremony over safety concerns+
Associated Press, Tue December 5, 2006 07:48 EST . - - COLOMBO, Dec. 5 (Kyodo) The Japanese Embassy in Colombo on Tuesday cancelled a traditional reception celebrating Japanese Emperor Akihito's birthday on security considerations, a spokesman for the embassy told Kyodo news. ''There were many reasons for the cancellation, but the main reason was security,'' the spokesman said... Back to the top

Norwegian peace envoy postpones visit to Tamil rebel areas, 7 killed in violence
Associated Press, Mon December 4, 2006 07:04 EST . DILIP GANGULY Associated Press Writer COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Norway's envoy to Sri Lanka's faltering peace process postponed a visit to Tamil Tiger rebel territory on Monday after a request by the government, a spokesman for Norway's Embassy said, as ongoing violence in the country's east claimed at least seven lives... Back to the top

Like Nepal, India is backing out in Sri Lanka too
organiser.org, December 10, 2006 . For India to play a role, the genesis of the Sri Lanka crisis has to be clearly understood... Back to the top

Police on lookout for LTTE link in arms haul
IE, December 05. After unearthing a major arms manufacturing hub in Chennai, the Tamil Nadu Police are on the lookout for a trail of agents involved in smuggling gelex boosters for the LTTE ... Back to the top

French aid group resumes operations in Sri Lanka after 17 workers killed
Associated Press, Mon December 4, 2006 10:14 EST . PARIS (AP) The French aid group Action Against Hunger announced Monday it is resuming operations in Sri Lanka - four months after 17 of its Tamil employees were killed, citing deteriorating humanitarian conditions... Back to the top

Tigers leave 'clue' to mislead Lankan investigators
Hindu, December 4. Colombo, Dec. 3 (PTI): Investigation into the assassination bid on Sri Lanka's Defence Secretary and President Mahinda Rajapakse's brother Gotabhaya has been complicated by a number of 'clues' left behind by the LTTE attacker in an apparent attempt to mislead. The identity card of a man wanted in the April suicide bombing against the army chief was found at Friday's bomb blast scene, an investigator said here today... Back to the top

Sri Lanka accused of scuttling peace bid as fighting leaves 7 dead
Yahoo, Dec 4, 5:40 AM ET. COLOMBO (AFP) - Sri Lanka has effectively ended a Norwegian-led peace process with the Tamil Tigers, a pro-rebel website reported, as fresh fighting killed seven people on both sides... Back to the top

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