Untitled Document
April 24, 2017 [GMT]
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Wigneswaran says concerns of Tamils have hardly changed
[Saturday 2017-04-15 17:00]

Northern Province Chief Minister C V Wigneswaran says the concerns of Tamils have hardly change over the years gone by. He said that even today the Tamils in the North still speak of losing their loved ones, losing their property and unemployment. Wigneswaran said that during the traditional Sri Lankan New Year, the hope of all Tamils is that their issues will be addressed.


Sri Lanka Prime Minister to visit Vietnam following Japan tour
[Saturday 2017-04-15 17:00]

Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and his spouse will pay an official visit to Vietnam from April 16-19 at the invitation of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc. During the visit Sri Lankan Premier will discuss international and regional issues of mutual concern with his Vietnamese counterpart, the official Vietnam News Agency said. Prime Minister Wickremesinghe is currently on an official visit to Japan from April 10-16 at the invitation of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.


British Minister for Asia and the Pacific Alok Sharma to visit Sri Lanka next week
[Saturday 2017-04-15 17:00]

British Minister for Asia and the Pacific at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Alok Sharma will visit Sri Lanka next week. Apart from holding meetings with the government officials, Sharma will also speak at the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute on the 21st of April on "Challenges in post Brexit World". The British government has told the UN Human Rights Council recently to give Sri Lanka time to implement the October 2015 resolution.


Belgian cigar manufacturer J Cortés moves factory from Ireland to Sri Lanka
[Saturday 2017-04-15 17:00]

The century old Belgian cigar manufacturer J. Cortés is closing the cigar factory in Ballaghaderreen, Ireland in the next six months and moving its operations to Sri Lanka. J. Cortés acquired the Exclusive Cigar Manufacturing Ireland plant, a family cigar company based in Ballaghaderreen, in January this year and has assured job security for the 38 employees of ECMI. However, on Thursday, the large Belgian tobacco company has informed the ECMI that they are proposing to close the factory in Ireland and move its operations to an existing plant in Sri Lanka in order to rationalize the business and save on wage costs.


UN expects Sri Lankan peacekeeping troops to be vetted before deployment
[Friday 2017-04-14 17:00]

The United Nations expect the member states contributing troops to peace keeping operations to ensure that none of the soldiers being deployed to UN missions are not implicated in any sexual abuse, the Spokesman for the Secretary-General Stéphane Dujarric said Thursday. The Spokesman said the UN expects Sri Lanka to do the same and ensure that everyone being deployed is vetted for past implication of sexual abuse.


U.S. Envoy calls for punishing UN peacekeepers including Sri Lankans for sexual abuse in Haiti
[Friday 2017-04-14 17:00]

The United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Thursday urged all countries including Sri Lanka that provide troops for U.N. peacekeeping missions to hold soldiers accountable for sexual abuse and exploitation of women and children in Haiti. The U.S. Envoy's appeal came after an Associated Press investigation into a child sex ring in Haiti found that UN peacekeepers including over 100 Sri Lankan troops allegedly sexually exploited vulnerable women and children in Haiti.


Met Dept warns naval and fishing communities
[Friday 2017-04-14 17:00]

The Meteorology Department today warned navel and fishing communities to be vigilant because of the possibility of sudden roughness of the sea associated with sudden increase of wind speed up to 70-80kmph. Issuing a warning at 12.30 p.m. today for the next 24 hours, the department said the deep and shallow sea areas off the coast extending from Colombo to Trincomalee via Galle, Hambantota and Batticaloa could be rough due to the active cloudiness associated with a low level disturbance in the Bay of Bengal which is in the east of Sri Lanka. “Heavy showers can also be expected in these sea areas,” it said.


Lankan woman stranded on sand dune with three kids, rescued
[Friday 2017-04-14 17:00]

The Tamil Nadu police at Mandapam rescued a Sri Lankan woman and her three children stranded on a sand dune off the Dhanushkodi coast in Ramanathapuram district of Tamil Nadu on Wednesday morning, The Times of India reported. Local fishermen spotted the woman and her children on third sand dune beyond Arichalmunai and alerted the marine police.The woman and her children were brought to the marine police station at Mandapam.


Pakistani arrested at BIA with heroin, handed over to PNB
[Friday 2017-04-14 17:00]

A 37-year-old Pakistani national who was arrested at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA), Katunayake last evening on charges of attempting to smuggle in 1.12 Kgs of heroin had been handed over to the Police Narcotics Bureau at (PNB) the Airport, Police said today. The suspect, who arrived from Dubai, UAE, was arrested by the Customs officials. Police said the heroin haul was found concealed in the suspect's shoes. He is to be produced in Negombo Magistrate's Court on Friday.


Prime Minister says Sinhala, Tamil New Year time for unity
[Friday 2017-04-14 17:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe says the Sinhala and Tamil New Year brings a message of prosperity and unity to the nation, acknowledging the role of the Sun in the agrarian society and its blessings towards a greater harvest.


Crucial discussions with EU in reviving GSP+
[Thursday 2017-04-13 16:00]

Coming weeks will be crucial for Sri Lanka as important discussions could take place with the European Union in reviving the GSP plus status, government sources said. A three member team from the European Union including EU Parliament MP Anne-Marie Mineur, Lola Sanchez Coldentey and Ben Vanpeperstraete are already in town to study the Sri Lanka situation while there is a possibility of Chairperson International Trade Committee of European Union visiting Sri Lanka shortly.


Colombo envoy wants assault trial transferred from Sepang to KL
[Thursday 2017-04-13 16:00]

Sri Lanka High Commissioner Ibrahim Sahib Ansar fears for his safety if he has to testify in the Sepang Sessions Court in an assault trial, the High Court in Kuala Lumpur heard. The court was told Thursday that the case needs to be transferred to the Sessions Court here for the envoy's safety and convenience. DPP Suhaimi Ibrahim argued that the diplomat fears for his safety in attending the trial in Sepang on the assault case where three men have been charged with rioting, mischief and causing hurt against him.


SL WON’T SUPPORT MILITARY ACTIVITY IN INDIAN OCEAN: PM
[Thursday 2017-04-13 16:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday emphasised that Sri Lanka would not support or be part of any military activity in the Indian Ocean and was committed instead to ensuring peace and maritime security in the region. The Prime Minister in his second day of bilateral talks in Japan met Japanese government officials; Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga, Defence Minister Tomomi Inada and Finance Minister Taro Aso.


Army intelligence officers identified over assault on Namal
[Thursday 2017-04-13 16:00]

Two army intelligence officers have been identified over the assault on former journalist Namal Perera. The former Sri Lanka Press Institute (SLPI) employee and a friend were assaulted on Monday, 30th June 2008. Perera and his friend, Mahendra Ratnaweera, who was working at the British High Commission in Colombo at the time, were driving between Narahenpita and Kirulapone when they were waylaid.


Sri Lanka, India to jointly run Trincomalee oil facility: Minister
[Thursday 2017-04-13 16:00]

India and Sri Lanka will jointly operate the oil storage facility at the strategic eastern port town of Trincomalee, Petroleum Minister Chandima Weerakkody said today. At least 73 of the 99 storage tanks in Trincomalee is to be managed under a new equity arrangement between the two countries, Weerakkody said. To operate the 73 tanks "we will have the joint venture running", Weerakkody said.


Sri Lankan UN peacekeepers accused of involvement in Haiti child-sex ring
[Thursday 2017-04-13 16:00]

United Nations peacekeepers including over 100 Sri Lankan troops allegedly sexually exploited vulnerable women and children in Haiti, an Associated Press investigative report said. An Associated Press investigation of U.N. missions during the past 12 years found nearly 2,000 allegations of sexual abuse and exploitation by peacekeepers and other personnel around the world. More than 300 of the allegations involved children, the AP found, but only a fraction of the alleged perpetrators served jail time.


Government can be sent home
[Wednesday 2017-04-12 17:00]

Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan has warned that if the grievances of Tamils were not addressed properly, even the present Maithri-Ranil Government would.......be ousted from power. The Leader of the Opposition was addressing an event in Vavuniya last Monday, at which 150 houses, constructed in the Sinna Adampan village in Vavuniya, by the London-based Lyca organization, were handed over to their tenants.


Foreign forces won’t be allowed to exploit Sri Lankan ports
[Wednesday 2017-04-12 17:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has assured that foreign forces won’t be allowed to use Sri Lankan ports in a way inimical to the interests of other countries. PM Wickremesinghe reiterated the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government’s stand when he addressed a distinguished gathering in Tokyo yesterday. He was delivering a talk on Sri Lankan understanding of global situation and importance of Japan.


EU pledges Euro 42 million to Sri Lanka
[Wednesday 2017-04-12 17:00]

The European Union (EU) will step up its assistance to Sri Lanka by providing Euro 42 million (approximately LKR 6791.4 million) for two programs including the supporting the Modernization of the Agricultural Sector (EUR 30 million) and Strengthening Reconciliation Processes (EUR 12 million).


Chinese help to tide over adverse climate
[Wednesday 2017-04-12 17:00]

The Chinese government will provide assistance to ease the impacts of the adverse climate and improve the living standards of the Sri Lankan people, a release issued by the Chinese embassy said yesterday. The release: From April 6 to 8, Yu Zhengsheng, Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) paid an official visit to Sri Lanka to jointly celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations and further enhance the bilateral ties.


Govt. vies for renegotiation
[Wednesday 2017-04-12 16:00]

The Sri Lankan government has asked for the renegotiation of the lease period in the Hambantota Port Agreement. Development Strategies and International Trade Minister Malik Samarawickrama taking questions from the Japanese media at a Business Seminar hosted by the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) in Tokyo, said they were in the final stages of the process and “hoped to finalize the agreement within the next two weeks”.


LIOC holding on to Trincomalee oil tanks illegally
[Wednesday 2017-04-12 16:00]

The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) today accused the Lanka India Oil Company (LIOC) of illegally holding on to the oil tanks in Trincomalee. Party leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake told a media briefing that this was clear when considering the Cabinet paper submitted by Petroleum Resources Minister Chandima Weerakody last year.


Lankan cleared of murder charges, faces deportation
[Tuesday 2017-04-11 16:00]

A Sri Lankan man who had a murder charge dropped last week after a judge ruled it took too long to bring him to trial is facing deportation from Canada because he has a criminal record, Montreal Gazette reported. Sivaloganathan Thanabalasingham, 31, is scheduled to have an admissibility hearing before the Immigration and Refugee Board on Monday afternoon. Thanabalasingham was charged in August 2012 with the second-degree murder of his wife, 21-year-old Anuja Baskaran.


Truth Commission will be set up soon: Harsha
[Tuesday 2017-04-11 16:00]

The government will be in a position to set up the Truth Commission soon and to gazette the Office of Missing Persons (OMP) under a selected ministry, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Harsha De Silva said today. He said reconciliation was not an easy task but assured the Government would go ahead despite obstacles by 'racists and those with petty political agendas'. “We are moving ahead as fast as we can to achieve reconciliation. As a sovereign country and people, we have taken steps within a democratic setting,” he told Daily Mirror.


PM continues Japan dialogue
[Tuesday 2017-04-11 16:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe arrived in Japan yesterday, his second official visit there since October 2015.The Prime Ministerial delegation was received by Hiroto Izumi, Special Advisor to the Japanese Prime Minister Shnzo Abe and the Japanese Ambassador to Sri Lanka Kenichi Suganuma, at the Narita International Airport. Diplomatic sources said that Wickremesinghe’s itinerary includes meetings with his Japanese counterpart, leading figures in government and the private sector and participation in several programmes which would be beneficial to both countries.


European Union delegation arrives in Sri Lanka to review current situation ahead of meeting in Brussels
[Tuesday 2017-04-11 16:00]

A delegation comprising the members of European Union has arrived in Sri Lanka Monday to review the current situation in the island nation ahead of a meeting scheduled in Brussels on re-granting GSP+ facility, the state-run radio SLBC reported. Reportedly a special discussion on granting the European Union's Generalized Scheme of Preferences, Plus known as GSP+ facility will be held in Brussels on 19th April. The EU delegation will study the present situation in Sri Lanka including the development, reconciliation and political stability. Thereafter, the delegation will present a report on its observations during the discussion in Brussels.


President appoints new SLFP organizers for Kurunegala constituencies and districts
[Tuesday 2017-04-11 16:00]

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has handed over the appointment letters to organizers for four constituency organizers and three district organizers for the Kurunegala District today (April 11) at the President's Official Residence in Colombo. Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekara has been appointed as a constituency organizer for the Panduwasnuwara electorate. Dharmasiri Dassanayake, Jayarathna Herath, and Lakshman Wendaruwa have been appointed are the other three constituency organizers appointed for Bingiriya, Polgahawela and Kurunegala electorates.


Scorpion colony found in Gampaha
[Tuesday 2017-04-11 16:00]

In a rare occurrence, a colony of about 2,000 scorpions was found in an anthill near a house in Kotagedara, Gampaha by wildlife officials. Residents said about 2,000 scorpions had stormed into the road when a lorry had accidently smoked out the anthill. Wildlife official who arrived at the location had captured about 250 scorpions and said the species would be released to a sanctuary.

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