The Lanka Academic

VOL. 9, NO. 268


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Rebels abduct 16 children from orphanage, defence ministry claims
Associated Press, Sun December 28, 2008 23:25 EST . Colombo (dpa) - Tamil rebels abducted 16 children from a Catholic orphanage in northern Sri Lanka - to be enlisted in their movement as fighters, according to civilians who have escaped, the defence ministry said Monday.

The children were taken away from the Dharmapuram in Kilinochchi, 320 kilometres north of the capital, after holding two Roman Catholic priests at gunpoint Friday, the army said one civilian reported.

It said the Tamil rebels demanded the priest release all children above the age of 12 to be taken away.

The incident was witnessed by a woman who lives adjacent to the church, the ministry said.

``Those innocent children tried in vain to cling on to the two priests. They pleaded the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) cadres to let them go. But they were dragged like cattle taken to the slaughterhouse,'' the ministry quoted the woman saying.

``I will never forgive myself for not helping those children. But I had to save my children first. That is why I left my home,'' the mother of two said, according to the army.

The civilians were among a group of 38 persons who escaped into a government-controlled area after fleeing the fighting.

A spokesman for the Catholic Church in Colombo said it could not verify the claims by the civilians because communication with the orphanage was cut off. dpa ad tl
Published: Mon Dec 29 00:21:25 EST 2008

Sri Lanka's Central Bank takes over private bank
AP, 29 Dec 2008. COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — A private bank saddled with bad debt that threatened to destabilize Sri Lanka's financial system was taken over Monday by the island nation's Central Bank.

The regulatory authority appointed the government-owned Bank of Ceylon to continue business operations at the troubled Seylan Bank and removed its board of directors, it said in a statement.

The decision was made because of increased deposit withdrawals and suspected liquidity problems, the Central Bank said.

"The difficulties of Seylan Bank PLC More...
Published: Mon Dec 29 13:44:53 EST 2008 Back to the top

Fighting rages in northern Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Mon December 29, 2008 05:25 EST . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The Sri Lankan military says several battles have broken out between troops and rebels in the nation's northern war zone.

A military statement Monday says the two warring sides fought pitched battles along the front lines in the Kilinochchi, Jaffna and Mullaittivu districts throughout the day Sunday.

The military says it has recovered the bodies of three Tamil Tiger fighters.

Rebel spokesmen could not be reached for comment. The two sides have been fighting for more than a quarter century over the rebels' demand for a separate state for the ethnic Tamil minority.
Published: Mon Dec 29 06:30:16 EST 2008 Back to the top

Year 2008 saw LTTE being pushed to the corner, 29 december. Colombo (PTI): The year 2008 saw the LTTE being pushed to the corner virtually by the Sri Lankan Army in the nearly three decades-old ethnic war even as India walked a tightrope on addressing the concerns of displaced civilian Tamils in the island's embattled northern region... Back to the top

Church blast kills Sri Lanka officers, 28 december. COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (CNN) -- Five members of the Sri Lanka's Civil Defense Force (CDF) were killed in a suicide blast in Sri Lanka at a church outside the capital of Colombo Sunday morning, police said... Back to the top

ISI-Lashkar operations with CPM help
Organiser, 29 Dec 2008. With Kerala yet to recover from the shock of Terror Export of 300-odd Malayali Muslim youth to Kashmir and PoK and their training at Lashkar and Hizbul camps, comes the chilling report of ISI-LeT links with LTTE and their possible next targets—Kerala and Tamil Nadu... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Navy sinks rebel logistics boat, 2008-12-28 10:20:25 . COLOMBO, Dec. 28 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lankan Navy has destroyed a Tamil Tiger supply boat off the northern coast, defense officials said Sunday.

"We spotted a supply boat for the LTTE 12 nautical miles east off Point Pedro around 2 this morning (1850 GMT)", Navy spokesman Commander DKP Dassanayake said... Back to the top

Sri Lanka well placed against Bangladesh
Associated Press, Sun December 28, 2008 04:13 EST . - - DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) Kumar Sangakkara and skipper Mahela Jayawardene each made half centuries on Sunday as Sri Lanka - moved toward a winning position on day three of the first test against Bangladesh... Back to the top

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