June 2008

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Army conducts free medical clinic for Jaffna civilians
The Sri Lanka Army Headquarters Jaffna organized a free medical clinic for the civilians in Jaffna peninsula on Friday (June 28). [Full Story]

Govt offers Interim allowance for public sector
President Mahinda Rajapaksa after meeting members of 50 Trade Unions yesterday at Temple Trees directed officials to grant an interim allowance of Rs. 1000 to the public sector with effect from July 2008. [Full Story]

Security forces capture Mannar 'Rice Bowl'
Security forces took total control over the entire Mannar 'Rice Bowl' area yesterday (June 29), defence sources said. [Full Story]

FM visits Bangladesh
Foreign Affairs Rohitha Bogollagama is in Bangladesh to hand over the invitation to the Chief Advisor of Bangladesh Dr. Fakhruddin Ahmed to the forthcoming SAARC Summit in Colombo. [Full Story]

India assists to implement solar power project
The Indian government will provide financial assistance to implement a solar energy electrification project in Galgamuwa, Monaragala district. [Full Story]
Reconstructed Beruwala fishing harbour commenced operations
President Mahinda Rajapaksa inaugurated the operations of reconstructed Beruwala fishing harbour today. [Full Story]

Nominations for two PCs commence today
The nominations for the North Central and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Councils election will be received returning officers at the District Secretariats countrywide beginning from 9am today and the nominations will close at 12 noon on July 04. [Full Story]

LTTE accused for making use of Madhu statue as a shield
Making use of the venerated statute of Lady of Madhu as a shield by the LTTE has been condemned by the Catholic Community in Bethlehem- Palestine. [Full Story]

India, Sri Lanka to conclude CEPA
India and Sri Lanka are all set to conclude their discussions on the proposed Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) by July 12, Financial Express reported. [Full Story]

LTTE sourcing explosives from India
Indian intelligence agencies said LTTE is sourcing raw materials for explosives and ammunition from Bangalore and Mumbai, UPI reported yesterday. [Full Story]

China to supply generators in Jaffna
The Chinese government has donated six high-capacity generators, each capable of producing nearly 6MW, to supply electricity to Jaffna peninsula. [Full Story]
Do not hamper future of students – President requests teachers
Teachers when seeking solution for their problems should never take any steps that could affect the future of their students said President Mahinda Rajapaksa when he met members of Teachers’ Trade Unions today at Temple Trees. [Full Story]

LTTE attacks escaping civillians
A group of Tamil civilians seeking security forces protection were attacked by LTTE while they were on their way to Pulmoddai on 24th June, defence sources said. [Full Story]

Promptly implement Govt decisions, President tells Secretaries
A high powered Ministerial Committee on Journalists’ Grievances commenced its duties at the BMICH yesterday. [Full Story]

Twin air raids destroy LTTE training base and FOB in Mannar
President Mahinda Rajapaksa has directed Ministry Secretaries to take prompt action in implementing the decisions taken by the government for the welfare of the people. [Full Story]

USAID continues to help Sri Lanka prevent Avian Influenza
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) handed over a second donation of key supplies to the Ministry of Livestock Development to help strengthen Sri Lanka’s early warning and reaction capacity against Avian Influenza. [Full Story]
LTTE uses refugees for smuggling – Indian Police
The LTTE is keeping a close watch on the refugee camps in Tamil Nadu and identify the refugees who were earlier associated with them and use them in India for smuggling essentials for LTTE. [Full Story]

Ministerial Committee to look into journalists’ grievances commenced duties
A high powered Ministerial Committee on Journalists’ Grievances commenced its duties at the BMICH yesterday. [Full Story]

Foreign Minister calls on Afghan President
The call by the Foreign minister Rohitha Bogollagama on President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan in Kabul on 24th June, had as its outcome a clear meeting of minds on the need for SAARC to resolutely address the contemporary challenges facing the South Asian region. [Full Story]

Army opens a new front west of A9
The army had opened a new front on west of Jaffna-Kandy road to flank 57 Division. [Full Story]
Conspiracy to smear Sri Lankan image – inter-religious dignitaries
Religious dignitaries who met President Mahinda Rajapaksa at President’s House this morning pointed out that certain groups were engaging in propagating baseless allegations locally and internationally against the government and bringing disgrace to the country. [Full Story]

Iran to support investments in Sri Lanka
The President of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has directed authorities to encourage and support investments between Iran and Sri Lanka, Tehran Times reported today. [Full Story]

India and Sri Lanka to boost trade and investment
Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka (FCCISL) and the Federation of Andhra Pradesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FAPCCI) signed an MoU to promote trade and investment between Sri Lanka and India. [Full Story]

‘No place for terrorism in Canada’
Terrorism – those who practise it and those who support it – has no place in Canada , said The Chronicle Herald, Canada in an editorial yesterday, June 23, 2008. [Full Story]

Govt committed to protect all faiths- asserts President
The Government is fully committed and prepared to make sacrifices and be committed to protect all faiths and their associated sites of worship asserted President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday at a ceremony to donate financial aid to religious institutions held at the Presidential Secretariat. [Full Story]
Northern theatre of war
The Security Forces have made steady progress on all fronts of the military operations now under way against the terrorist LTTE. Progress is seen in the Jaffna and Wanni theatres of operations, and the battlefronts of Mannar, Vavuniya and Welioya, states the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in its latest update on the ongoing military operations in the North.
[Full Story]

LTTE inflicts death and destruction - former Malaysian PM
Former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad said the LTTE is inflicting death and destruction in Sri Lanka and does not want to see similar groups which propagate violent racist politics operating in Malaysia. [Full Story]
SC rejects petition against PC dissolution
Supreme Court today dismissed the petition made by the UNP challenging the dissolution of the North Central and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Councils. [Full Story]

Heavy incursions by TN fishermen in Lanka waters - Indian report
An official report circulated at the collectors’ conference here in Chennai Thursday (June 19) revealed data on the large-scale incursions by Tamil Nadu fishermen into Sri Lanka’s territorial waters, and indicated that the violations occurred even in areas not known to be traditional fishing grounds, The Times of India online edition reported today (June 20). [Full Story]

Hong Kong Govt to provide legal help in criminal matters
An Agreement between Sri Lanka and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HK SAR) of the People’s Republic of China concerning Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters was signed on June 16 at the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. [Full Story]

USAID provides safe water to Ampara
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) signed on June 17, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the international relief organization AmeriCares to fund the completion of a Water Distribution Network for the Ulla community in Ampara District. [Full Story]
Donations to TRO end up elsewhere
Contributions to TRO could end up elsewhere, said Ambassador Bernard Goonetileke during a recent interview with WCCATV-13 TV in the United States. [Full Story]

Witness Protection Bill presented in Parliament
Minister of Human Rights and Disaster Management Mahinda Samarasinghe presented a draft bill for the 'Assistance and Protection of Victims of Crime and Witnesses of Crime Bill' in the Parliament on June 17. [Full Story]

Sri Lanka welcomes WTM ban
The Government welcomes the announcement of the Canadian Government to list the World Tamil Movement (WTM) as a terrorist organization, under the Criminal Code of Canada. [Full Story]

Italian Police arrest hardcore LTTE cadres
Italian Police have arrested 33 suspected cadres of LTTE in pre-dawn raids across the country yesterday. [Full Story]
President's Poson Message
"The best service to human society is making collective efforts at social welfare that eschews all divisions. Moved by this belief my government has initiated several projects to prevent social degradation and build a society imbued with religious fervour, offering comfort to all," states President Mahinda Rajapaksa in his message to the nation on Poson Full Moon. [Full Story]

Seven diplomats present credentials
Six new Ambassadors and a High Commissioner presented their credentials to President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat, Colombo this morning (June 17). [Full Story]

Central Bank issues new regulations for finance firms
The Central Bank has prepared an exposure draft on corporate governance for registered finance companies based on the directions issued to licensed banks that will come into effect from January 2009. [Full Story]

Minister Bogollagama meets Indian Prime Minister
Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollogama yesterday met the Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee to discuss issues of bilateral interest. [Full Story]

Serbia ceases VoT transmission
The Serbian authorities have ceased transmission of the Voice of Tigers (VoT), the official radio of LTTE, with effect from June 9, 2008. [Full Story]

Canada adds WTM to terror list
The Canadian government yesterday listed World Tamil Movement (WTM) - a Toronto based LTTE front organization - as a terrorist organization under the Anti-Terrorism Act. [Full Story]

New Chief Govt Whip appointed
Urban Development and Sacred Area Development Minister Dinesh Gunawardena was yesterday appointed as the Chief Government Whip of Parliament at the Government Parliamentary Group Meeting held under the patronage of President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees. [Full Story]
LTTE sympathiser held in Tamil Nadu
A suspected LTTE sympathiser was taken into custody and goods, including batteries and medicines, were seized from a high speed boat in the sea off Devipattinam, Press Trust of India (PTI), reported Saturday (June 14). [Full Story]

Foreign Minister in New Delhi to invite Indian Premier
Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama visited New Delhi yesterday to extend the formal invitation to Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, to attend the 15th SAARC Summit in Colombo. [Full Story]

Neither Sri Lanka nor UN asked for abolition of British Monarchy
Sri Lanka Permanent Mission to the UN in Geneva yesterday contradicted several inaccuracies and distortions contained in a report in the London Daily Express to the effect that Sri Lanka Had called for the abolition of the British monarchy.
[Full Story]

USIAD completes Hikkaduwa fishing harbour
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) on June completed its first large-scale tsunami reconstruction activity: the revitalization of Hikkaduwa fishing harbor, the source of livelihoods for 4000 families in this tsunami-affected area. [Full Story]

Ramnad steps up anti-LTTE vigil
Indian authorities have intensified investigations into LTTE operations in the coastal district of Ramnad, which overlooks Mannar, just across the Palk Strait, IANS reported yesterday. [Full Story]

World Bank endorses US$900m package to Sri Lanka
World Bank has endorsed a US$ 900 million package to Sri Lanka under the World Bank Group’s Country Assistance Strategy (CAS) for Sri Lanka for the period July 2008 to June 2011, World Bank said. [Full Story]

Suicide attack at Vavuniya Police Station
An LTTE cadre blew himself up near the SSP office complex in Vavuniya this morning. [Full Story]
Stop LTTE raising money in UK - President Rajapaksa
Supporters of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were able to raise millions of pounds each year from the Tamil community in Britain, some of whom were coerced into donating the money. [Full Story]

Fr. Flavian Wilathgamuwa
True patriot and great educator - President
Sri Lanka has lost a true patriot and great educator who fought fearlessly to protect the good image of the country, and brought patriotism into teaching, says President Mahinda Rajapaksa in a message of condolence at the passing away of Re. Fr. Flavian Wilathgamuwa, a former Director of St. Benedict’s College, Kotahena. [Full Story]
President returns
President Mahinda Rajapaksa after attending Commonwealth Conference in London returned to the island today (June 13).
[Full Story]

Support reconstruction in Sri Lanka – Dr. Liam Fox
The international community should help Sri Lanka in its reconstruction efforts following the clearance of the LTTE from the East and democratic elections there, said British Shadow Defence Secretary Dr . Liam Fox at the Sri Lanka theme night hosted by the Carlton Club, an affiliate of the Conservative Party in the UK. [Full Story]

Foreign Minister calls on Thai Prime Minister
Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama who is on a official visit to Thailand called on Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej at Government House in Bangkok yesterday. [Full Story]

US$ 150m syndicated loan to develop infrastructure projects
The government has raised a raised a syndicated loan of USD 150 million to fund infrastructure projects that have been earmarked and approved by the government in the 2008 Budget. [Full Story]

Sri Lanka calls on EU to list TRO and other LTTE front organizations
Foreign Secretary Dr. Palitha Kohona on Wednesday (June 11) called upon the European Union to list the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) and other LTTE front organizations, which have been clearly identified, including by the US government, as raising funds for the LTTE. [Full Story]

Indian firm plans IT park in Lanka
PS Group, an Indian Information Technology firm is setting up an IT park in Sri Lanka with an investment of USD80.4 million. [Full Story]
Security situation in SL could affect India - Indian Defence Minister
Any deterioration in the security situation in Sri Lanka will no doubt have an adverse impact on peace and security within India, India's Defence Minister A. K. Antony said. [Full Story]

UK Anti-Terror Law:
Commons approves longer detention of terror suspects without charge
Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s proposal to increase the maximum time police can hold terror suspects without charge to 42 days won a strongly contested vote in the House of Commons yesterday (June 11). [Full Story]
UK Parliamentarians meet President
The current situation in Sri Lanka particularly the government's commitment to address the grievances of all communities through a political process whilst seeking to eradicate terrorism and the stepped up terrorist violence of the LTTE featured in Presidents Mahinda Rajapaksa's briefing to British MPs on present developments in the country. [Full Story]

Commonwealth Conference ends
Commonwealth Conference which brought together 12 Heads of State in London over the last two days to discuss the reform of international institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund ended yesterday. [Full Story]

India assures Sri Lanka of support to strengthen local agriculture
Union Minister for Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution of India, Shri Sharad Pawar agreed to provide high quality seeds to Sri Lanka for cultivation purposes. [Full Story]
Terrorist threats: India wants shoreline security expedited
With intelligence agencies having warned of the threats of terror hovering over the Indian coastal areas, the Indian Home Ministry has asked three states to expedite implementing the Coastal Security Scheme immediately. [Full Story]

India seeks banking details of ‘KP’
A delegation of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) visited Berlin recently to seek banking details of LTTE financier Kumaran Padmanathan or “KP,”, to unravel the conspiracy behind the assassination of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, the Hindu reported yesterday. [Full Story]

Camaron assures to curb LTTE fund raising activities
David Camaron, the Leader of Opposition in UK, assured President Mahinda Rajapaksa his fullest support in addressing issues of LTTE fund raising, procurement and other illicit activities which continued to fuel the escalation of the conflict. [Full Story]

LTTE violates the right to life Deputy Solicitor-General tells UNHRC
The most important human right of all, the right to life, is being violated due to terrorist acts of the LTTE in Sri Lanka, said Shavindra Fernando Deputy Solicitor-General at the United Nation Human Rights Council in Geneva on June 6. [Full Story]

North Central and Sabaragamuwa PCs dissolved
The Government dissolved the North Central and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Councils with effect from midnight yesterday through two special gazette notifications issued by the Governors of the two provinces. [Full Story]

President meets British PM
President Mahinda Rajapaksa met the British Prime minister Gordon Brown at the British Prime Minister's official residence at No.10 Downing Street, London yesterday. [Full Story]
Mr. Mano Ganeshan drives unwarranted fear among Tamil community
The statement by Mr. Mano Ganeshan, of the Western People’s Front, calling on the Tamil people of the north and east to keep out of Colombo is unwarranted and appears intended to drive unwarranted fear among the Tamil people, states the Presidential Secretariat. [Full Story]

President arrives in London
President Mahinda Rajapaksa arrived in London yesterday to attend the Commonwealth Conference. [Full Story]
Do not betray victory of the nation
“I ask all political parties including the opposition, and various other organizations not to betray the victory we have won as a nation. If anyone tries to destroy this, it would amount to destroying a great mansion built upon the aspirations of the people,” said President Mahinda Rajapaksa in his address at the National War Heroes Day celebrations at Sri Jayawardenapura – Kotte, today (June 07). [Full Story]
Explosion at Polgolla
A bomb exploded in a passenger bus near Open University in Polgolla, Kandy short while ago. [Full Story]

LTTE terror: President calls for vigilance and calm
“I call on the people to remain calm and not give in to deliberate provocations aimed at fanning communal hatred and violence; remain vigilant against the forces of terror, and continue to assist the Police and Security Forces in the task of eradicating terrorism from our country, said Mahinda Rajapaksa in a statement on the bomb explosion at Katubedda carried out by the LTTE today (6th). [Full Story]

Acts of terrorism are never justifiable – Pope Benedict XVI
Acts of terrorism are never justifiable and always constitute an affront to humanity, said Pope Benedict XVI in his address to the new ambassador of Sri Lanka to the Holy See Tikiri Bandara Maduwegedera last Thursday (June 5). [Full Story]

Explosion in Moratuwa: 21 Civilians killed, over 40 injured (Update -2)
The death toll of the bomb explosion at 7.50 a.m this morning in a crowded bus near the Shilabimbarama Vihara, Katubedda in Moratuwa area has risen to 21 including 13 men and 8 women. More than 40 have been injured in the explosion. [Full Story]

World Bank supports reconstruction in North and East
The World Bank yesterday approved a US$75.6 million support package to Sri Lanka for the reconstruction of houses in North and East, upgrading of statistical capacity and auditing standards, and promotion of equitable access to basic and secondary education, a World Bank press release said. [Full Story]

Negombo Water Supply Scheme to be rehabilitated and augmented
Cabinet granted approval to a memorandum submitted by President Mahinda Rajapaksa in his capacity as the Minister of Finance and Planning, to enter into a grant agreement with the Government of the Netherlands for a sum of Euro 19,656,418 to finance the augmentation and rehabilitation of the Negombo Water Supply Scheme. [Full Story]

Explosion in Moratuwa
A bomb exploded targeting a crowded passenger bus near Shailabimbaramaya Temple in Moratuwa this morning. [Full Story]
Police arrest Train bomber
Police have arrested a suspect believed to be the person who is responsible for the bomb attack on a train at Wellawatta yesterday (4) morning. [Full Story]

Sri Lanka: Example of successful military action over terror – Wall Street Journal
Sri Lanka’s military operations against the terrorist LTTE has been identified by a senior writer of the influential US newspaper the Wall Street Journal as an example of the success of military actions to defeat terrorism. [Full Story]

Death of Tamil Nadu fisherman: SLN denies allegations
The Sri Lankan Navy (SLN) denies allegations reported in the media about its involvement in a firing incident on the night of 2nd June 2008 in which a fisherman from Tamil Nadu died, said a press release issued by the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission, Chennai. [Full Story]

New Parliament Session opens
The first sitting of the 3rd session of the sixth parliament will take place today (June 6). [Full Story]

LTTE suspect remanded
On Monday June 2 the ‘Q’ branch of the Tamil Nadu police have arrested a suspect, Edward Jayakumar from the Pudupatti refugee camp in Madurai in connection with the recent discovery and seizure of chemicals allegedly meant for the LTTE. [Full Story]
Mining and agriculture
Sri Lanka to learn from the Brazilian experience
President Lula da Silva of Brazil has asked Sri Lanka to send a delegation to study new technologies and advances in the spheres of mining, irrigation and agriculture which could assist Sri Lanka in economic development and lead to closer ties between the countries. [Full Story]

Japan – Sri Lanka: High level consultations of oil & gas exploration
The Prime Minister of Japan has suggested ministerial level consultations between Sri Lanka and Japan on oil and gas exploration by Japan in Sri Lanka and on the settlement of loans from Japan to Sri Lanka. [Full Story]

Bomb explodes in rail track
An explosion that occurred in the Southern rail line in between Wellawatta and Dehiwela stations this morning (4) around 7.10 a.m. caused injuries to 18 persons, 15 males and 3 females. [Full Story]
UN Food Summit
“I strongly commend to the world leaders gathered here to seriously consider the setting up of a Global Food Crisis Fund that will have contributions from all countries and from large business organizations that transcend geographical boundaries, and from financial institutions, arms manufacturers and philanthropists of the world, among others. [Full Story]

US - SL to expand bilateral trade and investment
United States and Sri Lanka at the recently concluded sixth U.S.-Sri Lanka Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) Council meeting held in Washington pledged to deepen the commitment to expand bilateral trade and investment between the two countries, US Custom House Guide website reported. [Full Story]

Commercial banks permitted to accept deposits from foreigners
The Central Bank in a statement issued yesterday said that the Bank permitted domestic banking units of commercial banks to accept deposits from foreigners introducing a new scheme, Foreign Investment Deposit Accounts (FIDA) with effect from yesterday. [Full Story]

President to address Food Summit today
The FAO Food Summit, which will be addressed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa today, is aimed at forging a common international response to the food crisis. [Full Story]
President directs immediate relief measures to the flood-affected
President Mahinda Rajapakasa instructed the officials at Ministry of Disaster Management and other officials to take immediate measures to meet the emergency requirements of the people affected by floods. [Full Story]

Foreign Ministry clarifies position on UN Security Council debate
Foreign Ministry clarifying its position on the UN Security Council debate on Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict which concluded on May 27 said that the situation of Sri Lanka is not under consideration by the Security Council and the Council did not take a decision on establishing a working group or an expert group on civilian protection in general or on any specific situation as implied by certain local print media. [Full Story]

Patrolling along Tamil Nadu coast intensified
The Navy has intensified patrolling along the Tamil Nadu coast to prevent ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka from having any impact on Indian waters, Vice-Admiral Nirmal Kumar Verma, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command, Visakhapatnam told the Hindu on May 30. [Full Story]

TN Police suspects LTTE for detonator theft
The Police in Tamil Nadu has confirmed that the 17,000 detonators missing from a Trichy Warehouse would have been stolen by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Indian media reported yesterday. [Full Story]

Ban terrorist front organizations - FM
Foreign Affairs Minister Rohitha Bogollagama addressing the IISS Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore called upon all states to ban front organizations which extend financial assistance and other assistance in kind need to terrorists. [Full Story]

Negotiations still possible but after demilitarization- Ambassador Jayatilleka
Dayan Jayatilleka Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva said in an interview that a negotiated settlement to Sri Lanka's conflict is still possible but not before the LTTE is "verifiably demilitarised and democratized". [Full Story]

Sri Lankan peacekeeper honoured
Sri Lankan Peacekeeper, Lance Coporal A. Jayantha was awarded United Nations Dag Hammarskjöld Medal on May 30. [Full Story]

President arrives in Rome
President Mahinda Rajapaksa arrived at Leonardo da Vinci International airport in Rome this morning to attend the World Food and Agriculture Organisation (WFAO) Conference to be held at the WFAO Headquarters in Rome. [Full Story]





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