The Lanka Academic

MAY 7, 2008 EST, USA
VOL. 9, NO. 32


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'Pak, Lanka unfit for UN rights body'
TOI, May 8. NEW YORK: Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Gabon, Bahrain and Zambia have questionable human rights record and should be debarred from membership of Human Rights Council, two human rights watchdogs said.

In a report released on Tuesday, the two bodies asked the democratic countries to stop the nations with "dismal" rights record from being elected to the Geneva-based top rights body of the United Nations.

The New York-based Freedom House and Geneva-based UN Watch evaluated each of the 20 candidates based on its record of human rights protection at home and its record of human rights promotion at the UN. They said a quarter of countries vying for seats on the Council have human rights records that should "disqualify" them from the membership. More...Discuss this story
Published: Wed May 7 22:31:15 EDT 2008

Setusamundram project would facilitate LTTE: Swamy
COL, May 8. New Delhi, May 07 Former Union minister Dr Subramaniam Swamy today told the Supreme Court that national security would be compromised if Sethusamundram canal project is completed ignoring the warnings given by the navy chief as well as director of coast guards according to whom the canal would facilitate the LTTE's activities in India.

Dr Swamy told a bench comprising chief justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices R V Raveendrtan J M Panchal that the canal project would help LTTE to shift its base to Cochin and they will have easy and direct acess from Zafna, LTTE's strong hold in Srilanka to Cochin in Kerala. More...Discuss this story
Published: Wed May 7 22:35:22 EDT 2008 Back to the top

Voters lists 'most disturbing' items seized in Tamil raids, documents say
globe and mail, may 8. TORONTO and OTTAWA — Precisely how Elections Canada voters lists ended up in the offices of an alleged terrorist front group is a lingering mystery that Canadian officials say they will likely never solve. But privacy officials now say they are auditing federal practises with an eye to plugging such leaks.

An RCMP affidavit revealed this week in Federal Court states that federal voters lists were among the "most disturbing" items seized in raids on the World Tamil Movement's Toronto offices in 2006. Police said the lists were the type that are sent to federal candidates and ministers for elections, and yet they turned up in the office of the non-profit group, the surnames of ethnic Tamils highlighted in yellow.

Such lists were once publicly posted, but they are now distributed only to Elections Canada officials and candidates' campaigns. They are released expressly to help advance Canadian democracy, and misusing them is an offence under the Elections Act that can lead to a $1,000 fine or three months in jail.

The RCMP investigation seeks to prove the non-profit was a fundraising arm for foreign rebels who have been known to use child soldiers and suicide bombers in their bid for a separate state in Sri Lanka. More...Discuss this story
Published: Wed May 7 23:12:20 EDT 2008 Back to the top

Sri Lanka's paper degrees and learning culture; Degree or education?
LBO, May 8. May 08, 2008 (LBO) - As an educator, I have found the economic transaction at the heart of education to be deeply problematic... Back to the top

Cash registers ring as Buddhists pack bags for India
toi, May 8. NEW DELHI: Thousands of years after the teachings of Buddha spread across the world, his followers are hot-footing it back to India... Back to the top

Tigers sought $3M from Canada
National Post, May 7. TORONTO - RCMP counterterrorism investigators in Toronto have seized a letter signed by the leader of Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers guerrillas directing Canadian Tamils to send him $3-million, according to police files released yesterday by the Federal Court... Back to the top

Sri Lanka military says battles across north kill 35 rebels, 2 civilians
Associated Press, Wed May 7, 2008 04:59 EDT . BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A series of battles between government forces and Tamil separatists across the embattled northern region killed 35 rebels while a blast blamed on rebels killed two civilians, the military said Wednesday... Back to the top

Sri Lanka's president suspends Parliament for one month amid corruption allegations
Associated Press, Tue May 6, 2008 15:04 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapaksa has suspended Parliament sessions for a month, an official said Tuesday a move criticized by the opposition as an attempt to disrupt ongoing investigation into corruption allegations... Back to the top

“LTTE activist arrested”, Wednesday, May 07, 2008. Arunachalam Chrishanthakumar, alias A.C.Shanthan (51) described by Sri Lanka government sources here as the “de-facto leader” of the LTTE in Britain was arrested on Tuesday as part of police investigation into allegations that U.K.-based Tamil groups and individuals are covertly raising funds and providing support to the LTTE which is banned under the terrorism act. Police said he was arrested in an anti-terror operation in the Swindon area, Wiltshire... Back to the top

43 killed in Sri Lanka clashes, May 7, 2008. Colombo (PTI): At least 41 LTTE cadres and two civilians were killed as fierce clashes broke out between the Tiger rebels and security forces in the volatile northern Sri Lanka, official said here on wednesday... Back to the top

LTTE-held areas liberated, says Army
The Hindu, April 6, 2008 - 17:09 EDT. COLOMBO: The Sri Lankan military on Tuesday claimed to have captured LTTE-controlled territory in Mannar and Vavuniya as part of its operations to “liberate” Tiger-administered areas in the north... Back to the top

Military: New fighting in northern Sri Lanka kills 16 rebels, 2 soldiers
Associated Press, Tue May 6, 2008 10:32 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Clashes broke out between government forces and ethnic Tamil separatists across northern Sri Lanka - , killing 16 rebels and two soldiers, the military said Tuesday... Back to the top

Tamil Tigers using electoral list, RCMP say, May 6, 2008. Tens of thousands of Sri Lankans living in Canada have been funding the Tamil Tigers' terrorism campaign through a secret strategy of profiling carried out using Canada's electoral database, the RCMP allege... Back to the top

Sri Lankan Air Force bombs rebel target, 6 may. COLOMBO, May 6 (Xinhua) -- The military in Sri Lanka said on Tuesday that its Air Force carried out air strikes against a TamilTiger rebels' target in the north... Back to the top

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