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January 19, 2018 [GMT]
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Court of Appeal extends stay order against arresting Gotabaya
[Wednesday 2017-12-06 18:00]

The Court of Appeal today extended a stay order against arresting former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa till December 15. The stay order was initially issued till today. Earlier Rajapaksa had filed a petition in court seeking an order against his arrest. Rajapaksa was facing arrest over the alleged misappropriation of over Rs. 90 million of Government funds for the construction of a memorial for his parents when he was the Defence Secretary.


Media Minister says there is no ban on any news website
[Wednesday 2017-12-06 18:00]

Media Minister Mangala Samaraweera says there is no ban on any news website. The Minister said that there have been reports of some news websites being blocked. However he said that there is no point in blocking access to any website locally as those websites can be accessed through proxy websites. The Minister was speaking at an event organised by the Sri Lanka Working Journalists’ Association in Colombo today.


SLFP can win election without MR: Samarasinghe
[Wednesday 2017-12-06 18:00]

There was no need of the former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to make the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) to win at the upcoming Local Government (LG) elections, Ports and Shipping Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said. While addressing a media briefing today at the SLFP Head Quarters he said the Joint Opposition had no right even to say that they would not support SLFP at the elections. “We will definitely win the upcoming LG elections even without the former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. More people are gathering with the President Maithripala Sirisena than ever before,” the Minister said.


SL calls for destruction of chemical weapons
[Wednesday 2017-12-06 18:00]

Sri Lanka called on the states still in possession of chemical weapons to take all necessary steps to expedite the destruction of such weapons since chemical weapons continue to pose a threat to global security. Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to The Netherlands and Permanent Representative to the OPCW, A.M.J. Sadiq made this call while addressing the 22nd Session of the Conference of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention in The Hague last Wednesday (29).


Suspects who tried to sail illegally to Australia and Canada remanded
[Wednesday 2017-12-06 18:00]

A group of persons who were arrested while allegedly planning to sail illegally to Australia and Canada by boat have been remanded in custody till December 6 by the Puttalam Magistrate. The suspects were taken into custody from a rest house in Thiladiya, Puttalam on Novemer 26 by police following a tip-off. They are residents of Jaffna, Mannar, Puthukkudiyiruppu and Trincomalee.


Nominations called for 248 local bodies
[Tuesday 2017-12-05 18:00]

Announcing the nominations for 248 local government bodies, the National Election Commission (NEC) yesterday said that it was hopeful of holding the long awaited LG polls on or before Feb. 17 next year. Addressing the media in Colombo, NEC Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya said that the election date should be decided by the commission and not by politicians. Therefore, the LG polls could be held on a date between Feb. 5 and 17, he added.


Special Cabinet meeting to approve gazette on H’tota Port handover
[Tuesday 2017-12-05 18:00]

Party leaders had yesterday decided to get the approval of the Cabinet of Ministers for a gazette notification on handing over Hambantota Port to China, Deputy Speaker Thilanga Sumathipala told The Island. Sumathipala said there would be a special Cabinet meeting on Thursday (07) to approve the gazette. The Deputy Speaker said the gazette would be presented to Parliament on the very same day and taken up for debate on Friday (8) evening from 7.30 pm to 9.30 pm. The party leaders had agreed with that proposition, Sumathipala said.


Journalists murder probe still a long way to go - Mangala
[Tuesday 2017-12-05 18:00]

Finance and Mass Media Minister Mangala Samaraweera yesterday noted that as a country it was very significant for Sri Lanka to be chosen as the venue to hold the UNESCO Regional Conference in Reinforcing Regional Cooperation to Promote Freedom of Expression and the Rule of Law in Asia through Ending Impunity for Crimes against Journalists. Sri Lanka which was once one of the most dangerous places to be a journalist was now a ‘safe space required for freedom of expression’.


Another LG delimitation case filed Former Ambagamuwa PS Member petitions SC
[Tuesday 2017-12-05 18:00]

A Petition has been submitted to the Supreme Court complaining that an injustice has been caused to Local Government Bodies during the delimitation process ahead of next year's Local Government polls. The petition has been submitted to the Supreme Court by former Member of the Ambagamuwa Pradeshiya Sabha, Vidanagamage Nandaraja. The petitioner has pointed out that when carrying out the delimitation process, the Ambagamuwa Pradeshiya Sabha had been divided into three and such actions could pose a threat not only to the Sinhala Buddhist voter foundation, but it could scupper the reconciliation process as well.


CID and AG in two minds over Ekneligoda case– Sagala Ratnayake
[Tuesday 2017-12-05 18:00]

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and the Attorney General's Department are debating whether the journalist Prageeth Ekneligoda disappearance case should proceed as a murder or abduction, Minister of Law and Order Sagala Ratnayake said yesterday (4).


Ravana Falls changes colour
[Tuesday 2017-12-05 18:00]

The heavy rains experienced in the Uva Province had given the beautiful Ravana Falls a new colour mixed with muddy water. The pictures show how the waterfall looked on Sunday with crystal clear water and on Monday with muddy water.


Sri Lankan family deported after spending 5 years in Canada Top News
[Monday 2017-12-04 18:00]

A Sri Lankan family who spent five years in Canada was deported Sunday despite appeals to Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale to issue a reprieve. Their flight took off from Montreal's Trudeau airport Sunday evening. Before leaving their home in Parc-Extension, Robert Lawrence, the father of the family, said they were all very sad, but still love Canada despite their deportation. "What can you do? We have to all obey the rules and regulations," Lawrence told CBC News.


LG polls on or before Feb 17
[Monday 2017-12-04 18:00]

The Elections Commission today said that it will consider a request with regards to the date to hold the Local Government elections. Chairman of the Elections Commission Mahinda Deshapriya said that there is a request to hold the election on a Saturday. He said that the election is likely to be held on or before February 17 next year. Deshapriya said that the election will not be held on a Sunday or public holiday. Earlier the Government had said it expects the election to be held on February 10.


Iranian oil tanker rescues 5 Lankan fishermen Top News
[Monday 2017-12-04 18:00]

An Iranian oil tanker succeeded to rescue five crews of a sinking fishing boat in Indian Ocean, IRNA reported. 'The crew noticed crucial situation of the sinking boat and received signs for help,' the National Iranian Tanker Company website quoted 'Stream' tanker's Captain Mahmoud Baghestani as saying. Rescue operation took five hours due to torrential rains. He said the fishermen are in safe and sound situation and will be delivered to the related officials in Chabahar Port on Wednesday December 6.


26-fold increase to SL's territorial sea area
[Monday 2017-12-04 18:00]

The United Nations has agreed to add a territorial expanse amounting to 26 times of the country's land extent to the sea area surrounding Sri Lanka, Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said. Sri Lanka is eligible under the Law of Sea to own this sea area because of the narrow and shallow strip of the sea located between Sri Lanka and India.


SLMC to go it alone in Eastern Province
[Monday 2017-12-04 18:00]

The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) has decided to contest the local government elections in the Eastern Province on its own. Party secretary general Nizam Kariyappar said the candidates cash deposits will be made tomorrow and added that his party was holding discussions with the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) with the view to form an alliance to contest the elections to other LG bodies.


TNA plans polls strategy
[Monday 2017-12-04 18:00]

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) held a special meeting to discuss the strategies to be adopted at the forthcoming Local Government Polls. The meeting was chaired by Jaffna District Parliamentarian and Illankai Tamil Arasu Katchchi (ITAK) Leader, at the party's Head Office at Martin Road Jaffna, yesterday. The members of the constituent parties in the TNA were present at yesterday's meeting, where the allocation of seats for each party as well as the campaign strategies were discussed.


NO SOLUTION POSSIBLE WITHOUT N-E MERGER SAYS WIGGIE
[Sunday 2017-12-03 15:00]

Northern Province Chief Minister C. V. Wigneswaran says that any solution sans the North-East merger would be destructive to the Tamil-speaking people. The Chief Minister’s comments come at a time when the interim report of the Constitutional Steering Committee on the proposed new constitution has temporarily stalemated following opposition from the Joint Opposition (JO) and the Muslim parties opposing the TNA demand for the North-East merger.


2 Lankan refugees held for going to Dubai on forged passports
[Sunday 2017-12-03 15:00]

Two Sri Lankan refugees were deported from Dubai for travelling on forged passports and arrested on their arrival here, police said. Sasidharan of Tiruchirapalli and Bhageerathan were staying in a private room in Chennai. The two had gone to Dubai through a private agent on November 19.


Britain calls for clarity on differing war missing persons figures
[Sunday 2017-12-03 15:00]

Britain has called for clarity on differing figures mentioned with regard to persons who had gone missing in Sri Lanka during the war between government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam ( LTTE) and in the aftermath of the end of the conflict on May 19 , 2009.


LG Polls Date after nominations
[Sunday 2017-12-03 15:00]

The date of the much awaited and hyped Local Government polls will be announced by the Elections Commission only after the nominations are finalized. Despite there being two sets of nomination lists, one for the 93 Local Bodies, which had no issues and the other bodies in the rest of the country, polls to all the LG bodies would be held on the same day, Additional Elections Commissioner M.M.


Hundreds of sea snakes caught in fishing nets
[Sunday 2017-12-03 15:00]

Hundreds of sea snakes were found trapped in fishing nets at Nawaladi in Batticaloa this morning, fishermen in the area said. They said they were finding it difficult to continue with their livelihood because of the rough seas and the incident with the sea snakes.According to reports a large number of sea snakes had been caught in the wake of the 2004 tsunami as well. However, some residents said the sea snakes were really a species of eels and that the adverse weather conditions might have triggered their exodus towards the fishing nets. The frightened fishermen asked the authorities to look into this matter.


ELECTIONS COMMISSION RULES : RELIGIOUS PLACES OUT OF BOUNDS FOR POLLS WORK
[Sunday 2017-12-03 15:00]

The Elections Commission has prohibited political parties from using religious places for any election propaganda, Chairman of the Elections Commission, Mahinda Deshapriya told the Sunday Observer. He said that the Elections Commission has already informed political parties in this regard and no direct or indirect propaganda activity will be allowed at religious places, under any circumstances.


Six Aava men in Police net Arrested in Colombo and Vavuniya
[Saturday 2017-12-02 18:00]

Six youths, including the suspected mastermind of the Aava Group, wanted in connection with a spate of crimes in the North, were taken into custody, Police said on 30 November. The Police Media told Ceylon Today that three suspects were arrested in Colombo on Wednesday while the remaining was apprehended in Vavuniya. They were arrested on alleged charges of assault, destruction of public property and vandalism that had taken place in Kopai, Jaffna and Manipay over the past one month, he said.


Contesting Eastern LG Polls ACMC joins UPA
[Saturday 2017-12-02 18:00]

The All Ceylon Makkal Congress (ACMC), headed by Minister Rishad Bathiudeen, has decided to contest a few districts, during the 2018 Local Government polls, with the United Peace Alliance (UPA). Secretary of the UPA, Hasan Ali said that the ACMC under Bathiudeen will be contesting all Districts in the Eastern Province. Ali added that the UPA was currently holding talks with a few more parties as well and that nominations will be handed over during the coming days.


Mahinda to lead alliance at LG polls JPP made up of 20 political parties
[Saturday 2017-12-02 18:00]

The Joint Opposition (JO) along with the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) has decided to form a broad political alliance, known as the Joint Podujana Peramuna (JPP), along with 20 other political parties aimed at contesting the 2018 Local Government polls, sources said. They said, that the JPP will contest the forthcoming polls throughout the country including in the North and the East under the flower bud symbol.


If ill-gotten gains allegations proven Wimal to quit politics
[Saturday 2017-12-02 18:00]

National Freedom Front MP Wimal Weerawansa said that he would promptly quit party politics if it could be proved that he had earned a sum of over Rs 490,000 through illegal means. Weerawansa alleged that the modus operandi of the Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and President Maithripala Sirisena was to sling mud at key figures of the Joint Opposition whenever an election nears, in a futile bid to derail the Opposition. He claimed that the public was fully aware of such tactics adopted by the regime led by the duo and that the public would not be deceived by the gimmicks of the current regime.


New low-pressure area spotted
[Saturday 2017-12-02 18:00]

The Meteorology Department said today it was tracking a low-pressure area developing over Andaman Island, situated in the east of Sri Lanka which was likely to turn into a tropical depression affecting the Eastern and Northern regions of the country next week. The Duty Meteorologist told Daily Mirror strong winds of up to 60 kmph may be experienced though there was the possibility of less rains over Sri Lanka.

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