The Lanka Academic

MARCH 15, 2010 EST, USA
VOL. 10, NO. 343


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Headline Summary
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'No democracy' in S.Lanka, says Fonseka supporter
AFP, March 15, 2010 06:18. NEW DELHI Sri Lanka's former chief justice slammed the arrest of ex-army chief and opposition leader Sarath Fonseka on Monday on the eve of his court martial, saying there was "no democracy" in the country.

Retired chief justice Sarath Silva criticised the treatment of Fonseka, who challenged President Mahinda Rajapakse at January elections, as hundreds of supporters of the ex-army boss demonstrated in Colombo.

"In my view, there is no democracy since there is no room for dissent," Silva told reporters. "There is no freedom of expression. The arrest and detention of General Sarath Fonseka is against the constitution."

Silva, who retired as the head of the Supreme Court last June, supported Fonseka's bid for the presidency after accusing Rajapakse of failing to uphold the constitution.

Fonseka and the president were allies in the crushing of Tamil Tiger More...
Published: Mon Mar 15 06:20:15 EDT 2010

INTERVIEW - Sri Lanka to request IMF waiver on deficit - cbank
Reuters India, March 15, 2010, 06:30. COLOMBO (Reuters) - Sri Lanka will seek a waiver from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) after failing to meet its 2009 budget deficit target as agreed for a $2.6 billion loan, the central bank said on Monday.

Authorities hope a waiver would allow frozen payments from the loan to resume, K.D. Ranasinghe, the chief economist at the central bank, told Reuters in an interview.

The IMF said late last month that it was delaying the third tranche of the loan after the government missed its 2009 deficit targets. The third tranche is worth around $318 million of the remaining loan of around $2 billion.

"When they (the IMF's mission to Sri Lanka) go to their board, we will request a waiver. The deviations are for good reasons," he said, referring to higher-than-expected government spending on post-war reconstruction and infrastructure projects.

Sri Lanka also hoped to renegotiate the IMF More...
Published: Mon Mar 15 06:31:48 EDT 2010 Back to the top

Lawyers alarmed over 'rights abuse' in Sri Lanka
BBC News, March 15, 2010. A panel of international lawyers says it is alarmed over reports that human rights activists and reporters are being intimidated in Sri Lanka.

The International Bar Association (IBA) also voiced concern over the possibility of bringing in criminal charges against activists by Colombo.

It says that 35 activists critical of the government have been listed according "to their level of dissent".

Sri Lanka maintains there is no intimidation against rights activists.

The IBA, which represents the legal professionals worldwide, says that prominent Sri Lankan human rights lawyer JC Weliamuna and rights activist Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu are "understood to have been placed at the top of a list", to be More...
Published: Mon Mar 15 06:25:06 EDT 2010 Back to the top

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