The Lanka Academic

VOL. 7, NO. 255


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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
Nearly 14,000 Sri Lankan civilians flee to gov t controlled areas, 14:05, December 17, 2006. Nearly 14,000 civilians have fled from the Tamil Tiger rebel held area in the country's restive Eastern Province since the beginning of November due to the fighting between the rebels and the government troops, state officials said Sunday.

Batticaloa's chief government administrator C. Punyamurthi said that some 13,910 people from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) held Vakarai and other areas in the east had arrived in the government controlled territory.

According to Punyamurthi, more than 3,400 of them had arrived in the eastern Batticaloa district's Eravur area on Saturday.

Heavy mortar and artillery fire are continuing to be exchanged between the LTTE and the government troops since Dec. 7 with rebels accusing the government troops of breaching the forward defense lines and venturing into their territory.

The troops said that they have attacked the rebel artillery and gun fire positions in Vakarai and accuse the LTTE of using humans as shields to fire at the military.

Both sides have come under increasing condemnation from the international community for causing civilian deaths in the conflict.

Officials said most of the refugees who are arriving in the government controlled territory use the main roads as several of them had died when two boats capsized in the seas on the way of fleeing.

Vakarai is the main location for the LTTE rebels since they lost their main administration seat of Sampur in the east to the government troops early September.

The Army Commander Sarath Fonseka last week said the troops were determined to flush out the rebels from the entirety of the east in order to ensure law and order for the civilians.

Over 64,000 people were killed between the mid-1980s and the year 2002 when the government and rebels entered the ongoing Norwegian backed truce.

Source: Xinhua More...
Published: Sun Dec 17 12:04:52 EST 2006

Related News Stories
Tamil baby born at Sri Lankan military checkpoint as mother flees  - Associated Press
Thousands of Tamil civilians brave flooded, mined jungle paths to flee Sri Lanka fighting  - Associated Press

Illegal arms to Lanka: Chennai is conduit, December 17. The state capital of Tamil Nadu is gradually turning into a conduit for illegal arms and ammunitions because of its porous coastline near Sri Lanka. The Ministry of Defence has ordered an inquiry after a consignment of explosives meant for the Sri Lankan Navy was seized last week.

The LTTE had long been procuring arms and ammunitions with the help of smugglers by sea from here. After the seizure of this consignment it has become clear that even the Sri Lankan security forces were procuring arms and ammunitions without the knowledge of the Central Government.

Ten days ago, the state police seized 40 boxes of explosives in Madurai district from a truck coming from Nagpur in Maharashtra and proceeding towards Tuticorin port.

The documents accompanying the consignment showed the manufacturer had a valid licence and the explosives were meant for the Sri Lankan Navy.

The police allowed the truck to proceed to Tuticorin but when pro-LTTE political parties raised a hue and cry that India was supplying arms to the Sri Lankan government to be used against Tamils, Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi took up the issue with the Centre.

Other than Defence Minister A.K. Antony, Minister for External Affairs Pranab Mukherjee also assured him to take up the issue with the Sri Lankan government.

Like the LTTE, the Sri Lankan security forces are also in need of arms and ammunitions to combat insurgency.

Mr Karunanidhi also ordered the police to investigate if any private concern had arms deal with Sri Lanka, since he was concerned following the escalation of violence there following the breakdown of talks between the LTTE and the government.

Few days back, the police came across a truck which met with an accident in Sivaganga district, carrying 30 boxes of gelex boosters. The consignment came from Kozhikode in Kerala and was supposed to be smuggled through Rameswaram, the nearest point in India from Sri Lanka.

It also revealed that many local gangs were involved in smuggling arms and ammunitions to the LTTE through this sea route.

During the past few weeks, fishermen had found wooden boxes containing rockets which got entangled in their fishing nets. One of the wooden boxes contained a 17-kg rocket along with six packets of cartridges and propellants.

The Indian Navy seized the rockets and the propellants and sent them to the Naval Armaments Depot (NAD) in Visakhapatnam for further investigation. Last week, fishermen found two more wooden boxes which contained two rockets.

All these incidents have made the mandarins in New Delhi sit up as more than 16,000 refugees have fled the island nation this year alone and entered Tamil Nadu following attacks by Sri Lankan security forces even on civilians in Jaffna and aerial bombings. More...
Published: Sun Dec 17 19:46:29 EST 2006 Back to the top

Sri Lanka s New Phase of Fratricidal Conflict
org, 17 Dec 2006 - 9:00 EDT. The month of November saw hectic political and military activity with the LTTE celebrating, "Maveeran Varam" or Great Fighters week coinciding with the birthday of the supreme leader Prabhakaran. The feudal character of the organization with its total allegiance to the supreme commander is evident with the tribute to the martyrs coinciding with the birthday of the leader. The military activity has considerably shifted from IED and deep penetration attacks to artillery duels and sneak raids on posts. Both sides are increasingly using heavy guns, tanks and even multi barrel rockets to pound each other's positions. The Sri Lankan Air Force is also employing newly acquired Kfir fighter aircraft to strike at LTTE positions, most of which are camouflaged in school buildings and other public areas or deep in the jungles. The renewed escalation of conflict which started with the attacks of each side on the water works at Muttur near Trincomalee and then escalated to Jaffna have seen blockade of A9 Highway by the Sri Lankan forces thereby denying the beleaguered population in Jaffna crucial supplies. The Government aims to put pressure on the Tigers who had been depending on this life line for supplies as well as for extorting large sums in the form of toll taxes.

Pounding the positions causing heavy destruction to troops and equipment followed by blocking of supplies as well as funds to the Tigers appears to be the Sri Lankan government's strategy. Military attacks by Sri Lankan Jets continued on Tamil Tiger strongholds in the North and the East. Killinochchi town near the headquarters of Tigers was also attacked ostensibly on the sea base of the Sea Tigers, who reports indicate have suffered heavy losses in the recent months. There were also a large number of clashes with heavy casualties during the period. One of the principal ones saw the killing of 45 civilians in Vakarai, Batticaloa in clashes More...
Published: Sun Dec 17 09:16:45 EST 2006 Back to the top

Lull in heroin smuggling to Sri Lanka: official, Dec 15, 2006. .
K.T. Sangameswaran Links it to intensified patrolling along State's coast CHENNAI: Narcotic drug enforcement authorities have noticed a lull in smuggling of heroin to Sri Lanka from the Tamil Nadu Coast in the last one-and-a-half months... Back to the top

Peace and the Tamil Tigers?
The Washington Times, 17 Dec 2006 - 17:00 EDT. A successful peace accord cannot be reached in Sri Lanka until the financial support for the terrorist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam can be altogether strangled... Back to the top

Military discovers powerful roadside bomb ahead of convoy in northern Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Sat December 16, 2006 03:20 EST . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The Sri Lankan military on Saturday discovered a powerful roadside bomb capable of causing widespread damage just before an army convoy was due to pass by in the country's north, the military said... Back to the top

Tsunami-stricken beaches revive, but survivors carry deep scars
Associated Press, Sat December 16, 2006 14:59 EST . DENIS D. GRAY - - In Sumatra's Aceh province, where an estimated 167,000 perished, extreme personal loss and financial desperation have taken a toll on mental health... Back to the top

Balasingham`s death could spark Lanka war: Analysts, 17 Dec 2006 - 9:00 EDT. Colombo, Dec 17: The death of a top peace negotiator for Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels dealt a huge blow to the moderate cause, and could spark a backslide to full-scale war in the island nation, analysts say... Back to the top

Flight school comes after unlikely journey for Sri Lanka native
Associated Press, Sat December 16, 2006 16:22 EST . GRAND FORKS, North Dakota (AP) Yasith de Silva has wanted to be a pilot since he was 4 years old... Back to the top

Silva and Sri Lanka dominate, 17 Dec 2006 - 9:00 EDT. Despite an excellent performance by Daniel Vettori which saw him claim seven second innings wickets, New Zealand face the task of breaking a world record if they are to beat Sri Lanka in the second Test at Wellington's Basin Reserve after Chamara Silva scored an amazing unbeaten 152 in the visitors' second innings of 365... Back to the top

Charity and terrorism don't mix
The Washington Times, 16 Dec 2006 - 17:50 EDT. There is not now, nor should there ever be, a right to give money or aid of any kind to terrorist groups, even if the stated intent -- feeding starving people in terrorist-held places, for instance -- is humanitarian... Back to the top

Congressional Record, 16 Dec 2006 - 08:00 EDT. In my time in Congress, I have had the opportunity to visit our South Asian ally, Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Sri Lanka police hunt for missing university chief, 16 Dec 2006 - 08:00 EDT. Sri Lanka police hunt for missing university chief Sri Lankan police said Saturday that an island wide police hunt is on for a university top official who has been reported missing since Friday afternoon... Back to the top

Father of drowned boy denies ties to Tamil Tigers, 16 Dec 2006 - 08:00 EDT. The father of an 11-year-old boy who drowned trying to save his friend is denying allegations by immigration officials that he was once a high-ranking member of the Tamil Tigers... Back to the top

Silva puts Sri Lanka in command of second test after Malinga runs riot
Associated Press, Sat December 16, 2006 05:49 EST . WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) Test newcomer Chamara Silva made an unbeaten half century to magnify damage caused by his bowlers and to give Sri Lanka - a 363-run lead over New Zealand by stumps on the second day of the second cricket test at the Basin Reserve on Saturday... Back to the top

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