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May 25, 2016 [GMT]
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Wigneswaran takes over three portfolios
[Tuesday 2016-05-24 19:00]

Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran has taken over three portfolios earlier held by Northern Provincial Council Minister P. Sathyalingam. The provincial ministries of Social Welfare, Rehabilitation and Women Affairs will now come under the purview of the Chief Minister who was sworn in as the subject minister by Governor Reginald Cooray at his office.



Petition against Sarath Fonseka’s appointment as MP dismissed
[Tuesday 2016-05-24 19:00]

A three-member Supreme Court bench today dismissed the Fundamental Rights (FR) petition against the appointment of Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka as a Parliamentarian, which was filed by the Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) on the 18 of February.



Wild elephant attacks foreign couple, man killed
[Tuesday 2016-05-24 19:00]

A foreigner was killed and his female companion injured when a wild elephant attacked them while they were riding on a motorbike at Habarana this afternoon, police said.



Presidency -- Ranil may contest if MS steps down: Dilan
[Tuesday 2016-05-24 19:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will contest at the next presidential election if President Maithripala Sirisena does not contest for a second term, SLFP Spokesman Dilan Perera said today. “While taking oaths as the sixth executive president of Sri Lanka, President Sirisena had vowed not to contest for a second term. If he does not contest the presidency for a second term we will have to find another candidate to contest in his place," he said.



Sri Lanka floods expected to cost at least $1.5 billion
[Tuesday 2016-05-24 19:00]

The cost of Sri Lanka's landslides and floods will be between $1.5 billion and $2 billion at the minimum, the government said on Monday, as the Indian Ocean island struggles to recover from its worst natural disaster since the 2004 Asia tsunami.The official death toll has risen to 92 but 109 people are feared to have been buried in landslides.Days of torrential rain forced more than 350,000 people from their homes, though many were returning on Monday.



Lalith Weeratunga at FCID
[Tuesday 2016-05-24 19:00]

Former presidential secretary Lalith Weeratunga arrived at the Financial Crime Investigation Division (FCID) this morning to give a statement over the allocation of Rs. 200 million to former media minister Keheliya Rambukwella for a surgery.



Jayalalithaa sworn in as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu
[Monday 2016-05-23 18:00]

AIADMK general secretary and Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and her 28 Cabinet colleagues were sworn in by Governor K. Rosaiah at the Madras University’s Centenary Hall today. For the first time in 32 years, Tamil Nadu has chosen to give a consecutive term to one party - Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa will remain exactly where she is, according to clear trends from counting. Most exit polls had predicted that the 67-year-old's arch rival, M Karunanidhi, and his DMK would return to power in a continuum of the "yo-yo trend" of which Tamil Nadu has been a long-time subscriber.



Fmr. Senior DIG Anura Senanayake arrested
[Monday 2016-05-23 18:00]

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) today arrested former Western Province Senior DIG Anura Senanayake in connection with the death of ruggerite Wasim Thajudeen, the CID said. The CID recorded a statement from Senanayake this morning. He is to be produced in Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court today.



United States offers additional assistance to flood affected
[Monday 2016-05-23 18:00]

The United States Government will provide an‎ additional 36 million Sri Lankan Rupees (250,000 U.S. dollars) to support flood relief efforts in Sri Lanka, the US Embassy in Colombo said today. This is in addition to the previously announced 7.2 million Sri Lankan Rupees (50,000 U.S. dollars) that is supporting humanitarian assistance activities in the worst affected areas and a three-year program of approximately 144 million Sri Lankan Rupees (U.S. $1 million) designed to provide safe, disaster-resilient, drinking water to populations who are highly vulnerable to flooding and droughts. The total amount of immediate and near-term relief announced by the U.S. Government stands at approximately 187 million Sri Lankan Rupees (U.S. $ 1.3 million).



Opposition leader has no official residence
[Monday 2016-05-23 18:00]

Opposition leader R. Sampanthan is yet to be given an official residence, although the president, the prime minister, the speaker, the commanders of the armed forces and the IGP all have official residences. At present, Sampanthan is staying at the upper floor block of a housing complex that has seen no repairs for some time.



President to attend G7 Summit in Japan
[Monday 2016-05-23 18:00]

President Maithripala Sirisena will leave for Japan on Wednesday (25) to participate in the Group of 7 (G7) Summit which is to be held in Tokyo on May 26 and 27.The President participates in the summit on a special invitation by Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe who is the present Chairman of the G7 Summit. It is indeed an unprecedented invitation since no leader of the country has received such an official invitation to take part in the G7 Summit. It is indeed an honour to the President and our country.



Stay away from affected areas
[Monday 2016-05-23 18:00]

Defence Secretary Karunasena Hettiarachchi yesterday urged politicians and other groups to refrain from visiting affected areas since the President and the government will look after the affected people and provide relief assistance to them. “I also informed the Inspector General of Police not to allow politicians to visit the affected areas. The officials engaged in disaster relief operations should be allowed to do their job without hindrance,” he told the media at the Disaster Management Centre yesterday.



Sampur Coal Project Continues Despite Modi-Sirisena Talks?
[Sunday 2016-05-22 18:00]

India’s state-run National Thermal Power Corporation Ltd. (NTPC) has not decided to cancel or convert the proposed coal fired 500 MW power plant in Sampur, Trincomalee into a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant, a top official said. Trincomalee Power Company Limited Managing Director Praveen Saxena toldThe Sunday Leader that they have not received any instructions to suspend the coal power project and so they are continuing with the project.



Australia contributes $500,000 to UNICEF to help Sri Lanka
[Sunday 2016-05-22 18:00]

Australia is providing urgently needed assistance to Sri Lanka in response to recent flooding and landslides.The Australian Government will contribute $500,000 to UNICEF for humanitarian assistance, including the provision of clean water and sanitation for children in shelters, the Australian High Commission in Colombo said today.The disaster has affected 22 of the country’s 25 districts. It has so far claimed over 70 lives and authorities hold grave concerns for nearly 150 people who remain missing.



Pakistan sends field hospital, relief items
[Sunday 2016-05-22 18:00]

The Pakistan Government has sent a 30 bed fully equipped modern field hospital and relief materials for the flood victims in Sri Lanka. Pakistan Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif had directed the relevant authorities to make immediate arrangements for the provision of emergency relief to flood victims.The relief assistance includes a state of the art 30 bed field hospital which is equipped with operation theaters, x ray systems and Labs, as well as a variety of relief items including medicine, electricity generators, tarpaulins, tents etc, in heavy quantities. 17 Pakistani doctors will also be arriving in Sri Lanka for providing health care assistance.



Water level in Kelani River dropping
[Sunday 2016-05-22 18:00]

The water level in the Kelani River is falling and should return to less than five feet during the next few days, the Irrigation Department said. Director General of the department S. S. L Weerasinghe said water levels had dropped to six feet, a foot below the major flood level. Water level in the Kelani River, Nagalagama Street rose to nearly eight feet flooding Colombo’s suburbs.



Death toll increases to 82: DMC
[Sunday 2016-05-22 18:00]

The number of deaths caused by floods and landslides increased to 82 while 118 individuals have been reported missing, the Disaster Management Centre (DMC) said today.According to the DMC 242,927 people of 57,590 families were affected by the recent weather. The Center also said that 29 were injured.Kegalle District reported the most number of deaths (48), with 30 dead in Aranayke and 14 more in Bulathkohupitiya. Eight deaths were reported from Gampaha and five from Colombo. The DMC said 22 districts had been affected by the adverse weather last week.



Five more bodies recovered in Aranayake
[Sunday 2016-05-22 18:00]

Five more bodies had been recovered from the Aranayake landslide site making the total number of death 35, the Aranayake Divisional Secretary said today. More than 80 houses have been completely destroyed while 109 people were reported missing due to the landslide. A contingent of 200 Army personnel is continuing relief operations in Aranayake area.



Another landslide reported in Aranayake
[Saturday 2016-05-21 17:00]

Another landslide was reported in Kabaragala-Kanda at Aranayake this afternoon, Disaster Management Centre (DMC) said. The DMC officials were reaching at the place and no information has been received regarding the incident as yet, a DMC spokesman said.



Foreign aid reaches flooded Sri Lankan capital, 71 dead
[Saturday 2016-05-21 17:00]

Foreign aid began arriving in Sri Lanka Saturday, bringing help to half a million people forced out of their homes by heavy rains and landslides that have killed at least 71 in a week of extreme weather wreaking havoc in South Asia. As the heaviest rains in a quarter of a century battered Sri Lanka, Cyclone Roanu barrelled into the Bangladesh coastline leaving six people dead and forcing the evacuation of 500,000 as it unleashed winds as strong as 88 kilometres (54 miles) per hour and heavy downpours.


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