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October 2, 2014 [GMT]
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Missing Persons Commission of Sri Lanka to record statements from military personnel next
[Thursday 2014-10-02 15:00]

The Presidential Commission Investigating Cases of Missing Persons in Sri Lanka expects to record statements from the military personnel on disappeared persons next. The Commission conducted the second round of public sittings to hear cases of missing in Kilinochchi district from 27th to 30th September 2014 due to the large number of complaints it received from the district. The Chairman of the Commission, Mr. Maxwell Paranagama has said the commission is expected to get statements from military personals on disappeared persons in the coming days.



Lankan Army Keeps Close Watch to Nip LTTE Revival in Bud
[Thursday 2014-10-02 15:00]

Civilians in the North Sri Lankan Tamil-speaking district of Kilinochchi keep complaining about ubiquitous surveillance by the army and state intelligence agencies, and say that the former “war zone” is today an “open prison”. Maj General Sudantha Ranasinghe But security forces justify spying on the grounds that it was necessary to prevent the recrudescence of the terrorist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and ensure a peaceful life. “What is ‘spying’ for you is ‘being aware’ for us.



Minister calls for probe over Nonis issue
[Thursday 2014-10-02 15:00]

Government Minister and leader of the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), Champika Ranawaka, today called for an impartial investigation on the issue concerning Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to London, Chris Nonis, if there is a formal complaint made at the External Affairs Ministry. Speaking to reporters at a media briefing, Ranawaka said that Nonis played a crucial role for the country during the Commonwealth summit held in Sri Lanka last year where he made statements countering allegations raised against the Government.



Sri Lanka seizes India-bound gold Top News
[Thursday 2014-10-02 15:00]

Two persons were arrested in Sri Lanka today for allegedly smuggling gold slabs weighing 45 kilogrammes to India. The boat was seized in the sea 25 nautical miles west of Mathagal in the Jaffna peninsula, the Sri Lankan Naval spokesman said. The Navy said that the gold was allegedly being smuggled into India. Two persons have been arrested in this connection.On Monday, the Navy had also seized 1.7 kgs of gold hidden in a boat anchored in the Mathagal shore line. These detections have raised suspicions of an organised gold smuggling racket to India from Sri Lanka, the Navy said.



Mattegoda Army Camp fire under control Top News
[Thursday 2014-10-02 15:00]

The Media Spokesman of the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasuriya speaking to www.news.lk has said that the the fire broke out at the Mattegoda army camp following an explosion in the armoury has been doused and completely under control. An explosion was reported in the armory around 7.30 am this morning and the fire that broke out as a result had been doused with the assistance of the army and the fire brigades at Kotte and Dehiwala Municipal Councils the Spokesman further added.



Nonis tight-lipped on ‘slap on face’
[Thursday 2014-10-02 15:00]

Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to the UK Dr. Chris Nonis yesterday declined to comment on strong speculation that he had resigned from his post after being assaulted by a powerful government MP while in the US recently. Contacted over the telephone for comment on the incident which had allegedly taken place during a function in New York, Dr. Nonis replied: ‘No Comment.’ Asked if he was back in the UK, Dr. Nonis replied in the affirmative, but he said he did not wish to talk about the incident.



I want my son and not his death certificate
[Wednesday 2014-10-01 18:00]

A mother of a missing person demanded the Presidential Commission, Investigating complaints on missing persons, to find her son and hand him back to her, instead of issuing a death certificate on the disappearance of her son, who disappeared during the last lap of the war against the LTTE in 2009. Sasikala Anthony, the mother, also pleaded with the Commission Chief not to bring the death certificate of her son to her door step. "I have been searching for my son. So now please don't come to my door step with a death certificate of my son and say he is no more ," Sashikala said.



US stance on SL softens
[Wednesday 2014-10-01 18:00]

President Mahinda Rajapaksa is reported to have told the Cabinet meeting that his discussions with US Secretary of State John Kerry had made him realize that the US had softened its stance on Sri Lanka. According to Government sources the President had said the meetings he had with Mr. Kerry and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly Session in New York were fruitful. Describing the meetings as highly successful, he said India would not act in a manner that was unfavorable to Sri Lanka.



Sri Lanka police stop online media workshop -rights groups
[Wednesday 2014-10-01 18:00]

Sri Lanka media rights groups said on Tuesday police had stopped an online journalists' association from holding a workshop on ethics and digital security at the weekend, the fourth disruption of media gatherings since May. The Action Committee for Media Freedom, an umbrella organization of media rights groups, said police officers threatened the owner of the resort where the workshop was to be held in Negombo, a popular coastal town 38 km (24 miles) north of Colombo.



ITAK sets up committee to direct international, local affairs
[Wednesday 2014-10-01 18:00]

The Central Working Committee of the Ilankai Tamil Arasu Katchchi (ITAK), at a meeting on Monday, at the Urban Council Hall in Trincomalee, set up a political committee to coordinate its international and local political affairs. The political committee is led by TNA Chairman and Trincomalee District Parliamentarian, R. Sampanthan.



Sobhitha Thera! Common Candidate
[Wednesday 2014-10-01 17:00]

The Democratic United National Front (DUNF) has stated that Ven. Maduluwawe Sobhitha Thera should be the common opposition candidate at the coming presidential election as Sri Lankans have no faith in United National Party (UNP) Leader, Ranil Wickremesinghe. Meanwhile, representatives of political parties had unanimously agreed that a private member's motion should be presented to Parliament seeking the abolition of the Executive Presidency. This meeting was held under the leadership of Ven. Maduluwawe Sobhitha Thera, Head of the National Movement for Social Justice (NMSJ) and the Naga Viharaya.



Jayalalithaa's conviction an internal Indian issue: Sri Lanka
[Wednesday 2014-10-01 17:00]

Sri Lankan government on Tuesday declined to comment on the conviction of Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa in disproportionate assets case, calling it an internal matter of India. "Our position is that it is an internal Indian issue which we should not comment on. "The government has always maintained that our dealings will be limited to the central government of India. We would not respond to provincial governments," Media and Information Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told reporters.



‘Sri Lanka’s Prevention of Terrorism Act should be repealed’ Top News
[Tuesday 2014-09-30 16:00]

Civil society members and politicians came together at a campaign in Colombo, seeking the release of Balendran Jeyakumari, who was arrested by Sri Lanka’s Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) in March this year. They demanded that the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) — under which Ms. Jeyakumari was detained — be repealed immediately.



UK Deputy HC she says was monitored
[Tuesday 2014-09-30 16:00]

The British Deputy High Commissioner in Colombo Laura Davies claims she was “watched” during a visit to the East recently. In a blog posting on the British High Commission website, Davies said that some of the people she had met during her visit were having follow-up visits or phone calls. “But it gradually became impossible to ignore the fact that I was being watched. Worse, it was clear that the people I was meeting were having follow-up visits or phone calls, asking what I had done and said.



Tamil party urges public in north to submit evidence to UN investigation team - report
[Tuesday 2014-09-30 16:00]

A minor Tamil party in Sri Lanka's North, has been urging the public to submit evidence against the alleged war crimes and human rights violations in Sri Lanka to the United Nations team conducting the international probe, a local media report said. According to a report in the national news agency, Lankapuvath, the Tamil National People's Front (TNPF) had asked the public to give evidence to the UN investigation team appointed by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The party earlier this month has reportedly launched a document in Tamil with a sample submission form and information sheets encouraging people to forward their submissions.



MR to discuss snap poll
[Tuesday 2014-09-30 16:00]

With speculation rife about a snap presidential election early next year, President Mahinda Rajapaksa will hold a discussion with the leaders of the constituent parties of the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) after today’s Cabinet meeting, Daily Mirror learns. The President, who was in New York for the UN General Assembly session, arrived in the country yesterday morning. It is speculated in political circles that he would discuss matters pertaining to a forthcoming election.



23 projects with Rs. 68 b investment approved for north: Lakshman Yapa
[Tuesday 2014-09-30 16:00]

The Board of Investment (BOI) has approved 23 projects with an envisaged investment of Rs. 68 billion specifically for the Northern Province, a top Minister disclosed yestedray.With the Board of Investment (BOI) setting up an office in Jaffna in 2010, a considerable amount of business and industrial activity has taken place since the end of the conflict. “Private sector investment approved by the BOI for post-war Northern Province is Rs. 68.2 billion via 23 projects, especially in agriculture and fisheries. Additionally nine hotel projects consisting of 328 rooms have been approved for construction with an investment of Rs. 2.2 billion,” Investment Promotion Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena told the Investor Forum organised in Jaffna yesterday.



Four ship wrecks located near Passekudah
[Tuesday 2014-09-30 16:00]

Archaeologists attached to the Maritime Archaeology Unit of Galle (MAU) have found four ship wrecks in the sea near Passekudah during their recent explorations. Research Officer of the MAU, Rasika Muthucumarana told The Island yesterday that three of the ships were lying less than 100m from each other while the fourth was 500m away from the rest. The density of wrecks found in Passekudah was much higher than in any other ship wreck locations in the seas around the country.



Sampanthan to lead ITAK political group
[Monday 2014-09-29 17:00]

Illangai Thamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) Parliamentarian R Sampanthan has been appointed as the leader of the ITAK political group, following a meeting held in Trincomalee. The ITAK central committee met in Trincomallee under the leadership of ITAK leader Mavai Senathirajah and at that meeting the ITAK political group was formed. The ITAK political group led by Sampanthan will look at domestic and intentional issues in relation to Sri Lanka. ITAK also appointed M.A. Sumanthiran as the official spokesman of the party.



Muslim group writes to MR on BBS threat
[Monday 2014-09-29 17:00]

The Muslim Council of Sri Lanka has written to President Mahinda Rajapaksa drawing attention to the threat made against the organisation by the General Secretary of the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) the venerable Galaboda Aththe Gnansara thero. The BBS monk had said he will “take care of” the Muslim Council of Sri Lanka for urging the President to refuse a visa to the venerable Ashin Wirathu from Myanmar, the dreaded leader of the 969 Movement.


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