The Lanka Academic

VOL. 9, NO. 269


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Lanka plans to hold polls in war-ravaged north in 2009, 30 december. Colombo, Dec 30 (PTI) Sri Lanka plans to hold elections in the war-ravaged Tamil dominated north in 2009 after flushing out the LTTE from their strongholds and rehabilitating the displaced people, President Mahinda Rajapaksa has said.

"We want to hold elections in northern Sri Lanka (Wanni) during 2009 after settling the displaced people," Rajapaksa said while talking to a group of Indian journalists here last night.

The President's remark come as his forces are on the offensive and have laid seige to last two bastions of the Tamil Tigers in the north including their de-facto capital Kilinochchi.

He said that his government is hopeful the LTTE terrorism will be brought under control next year (2009).

On the losses suffered by the troops, Rajapaksa said: "you know when there is a war any such thing can happen".

Meanwhile, the committee working out devolution of powers for Northern Sri Lanka has intensified its works for submitting the final report. More...

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Published: Tue Dec 30 08:10:21 EST 2008

Heavy clashes as Sri Lanka troops extend defense lines, 2008-12-30. COLOMBO, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Heavy clashes have been reported in Sri Lanka's northern battle front as the troops extended their forward defense lines, Ministry of Defense said here Tuesday.

"Heavy clashes have been reported between Army infantrymen and the terrorists in the North of Mulliyawali from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Monday as troop extended their forward boundaries further northwards. Intercepted terrorist radio transmissions have confirmed heavy damages to the terrorists during these clashes" a statement said.

The current military operations have forced the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels to be confined to a triangular shaped area edged by the A-9 road from the West, A-34 road from the South and the northeastern coastal belt, the ministry said.

Meanwhile the International Committee of the Red Cross and the military both said that some 17 dead bodies of soldiers were handed over by the rebels to the Army at Omanthai in the northern Vavuniya district on Monday night.

The rebels have lost large chunks of territory in the current forward march by the military in the Kilinochchi and Mullaithivu districts, the last of the bastions for rebels in the island's north and east. Heavy fighting has caused large casualties on both sides. More...
Published: Tue Dec 30 10:18:54 EST 2008 Back to the top

Related News Stories
Fighting rages in northern Sri Lanka  - Associated Press

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

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Published: Mon Dec 29 00:21:25 EST 2008 Back to the top

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... Back to the top

Sri Lanka rupee hits all-time low, shares at 4-yr low, 40 december. COLOMBO, Dec 29 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's rupee fell 0.7 percent to an all-time low on Monday before a state bank intervened amid demand for dollars from importers and banks... Back to the top

Sri Lanka army bodies handed over, 30 december. Tamil Tiger rebels have handed over the bodies of 17 Sri Lankan army soldiers to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)... 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

PCB: Sri Lanka 's visit clashes with its own tour
Associated Press, Tue December 30, 2008 10:58 EST . - - ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AP) The Pakistan Cricket Board said Sri Lanka - 's proposed itinerary for it to visit clashes with the Pakistanis' tour to Bangladesh in March... 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 cruises toward win in 1st test
Associated Press, Tue December 30, 2008 04:37 EST . - - Sri Lanka - declared its second innings before lunch at 405-6, anchored by captain Mahela Jayawardene's imperious 166... Back to the top

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