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January 19, 2018 [GMT]
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US sends letter to govt regarding Russian
[Saturday 2017-12-16 17:00]

The US government has sent a letter to the Sri Lanka government through diplomatic channels regarding the escape of Russian national Farin Manokin. He had been arrested by the CID under the charges of money laundering to the tune of several million US dollars from the country. The Russian national arrested by the CID on charges of money laundering had been released on bail by the High Court and ordered to report to the CID once a week as a bail condition.

Man, 45, accused of killing wife, 46, in Scarborough
[Friday 2017-12-15 18:00]

Toronto Police say the victim was found by emergency crews responding to a medical call in a townhouse complex at 50 Empringham Dr., near Morningside and McLevin Aves., around 1:40 p.m. on Tuesday. “Police and paramedics located a woman with severe trauma,” Det.-Sgt. Mike Patterson said in a statement released Thursday. “She was rushed to hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced (dead).” The woman — the city’s 60th murder victim of the year — has now been identified as 46-year-old Jayanthy Seevaratnam.

UN experts calls for end to arbitrary detention
[Friday 2017-12-15 18:00]

The three-member UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention which was in Sri Lanka from December 4, today urged the government to introduce urgent reforms to the 'outdated' legal framework to end arbitrary detention in the country. The delegation comprised Working Group Members José Antonio Guevara Bermúdez, Leigh Toomey and Elina Steinerte. They called for urgent reforms to address problems including the excessive use of remand, a lack of effective alternatives to detention, an outdated legal framework and reliance on confessions often extracted under torture or duress.

Interim order for Gota extended
[Friday 2017-12-15 18:00]

The interim order, preventing FCID from taking action against Gotabaya Rajapaksa under the Public Property Act, was extended till December 25 by the Court of Appeal today. A petition was filed by former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa seeking for an order to prevent action being taken against him under the Public Property Act by the FCID, alleging misappropriation during construction of the D.A. Rajapaksa Memorial Museum.

Sriyani Wijewickrama sworn in as State Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government Top News
[Friday 2017-12-15 18:00]

Digamadulla district UPFA Parliamentarian Sriyani Wijewickrama was sworn in as the State Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government before President Maithripala Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat today, Presidential Secretarat said. Mrs. Sriyani Wijewickrama MP, who represented the Joint Opposition (JO) recently met the President to extended her support to the policies of the President.Minister Faiszer Musthapha was also present on this occasion.

We expect SL to keep India's security concerns in mind: Indian MEA
[Friday 2017-12-15 18:00]

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) of India on Thursday said that it expected the Government of Sri Lanka to keep New Delhi's security concerns and sensitivities in mind with regard to regional developments and dynamics.

[Friday 2017-12-15 18:00]

President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday instructed the Central Environment Authority to ban the use of polythene for election decorations. The President also told the CEA to take strict action in accordance with the law against those who violate the ban. The President ordered the CEA to hold a meeting with all stakeholders and make them aware about the regulation. The President made the above instructions during a meeting at the Presidential Secretariat held to discuss matters related to improving efficiency in waste management at local authorities.

Debate on six subcommittees to be followed by final report to CA
[Thursday 2017-12-14 16:00]

The Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly would prepare its final report, containing constitutional proposals following a debate on recommendations made by six sub committees that dealt with fundamental rights, judiciary, law and order, public finance, public service and centre-periphery relations, Steering Committee member and MP Dr. Jayampathy Wickramaratne told The Island yesterday.

Former Navy Spokesman arrested for abduction of youths remanded till February 22
[Thursday 2017-12-14 16:00]

Former Naval Media Spokesperson Commodore DKP Dassanayake arrested for the abduction of 11 youths has been remanded till 22 December. Colombo Fort Magistrate court ordered to further remand the former Navy officer and six other suspects when they were produced before the Court today as the case was called before the acting magistrate.

Australia deports 29 SL illegal migrants
[Thursday 2017-12-14 16:00]

At least 29 Sri Lankans who attempted to illegally migrate to Australia arrived at the Bandaranaike International Airport this morning after being deported. The deportees including two boys aged 12 and 15 are residents ofMatara, Hambantota, Hakmana and Tangalle arrived onboard a special Australian flight. They had left Sri Lanka on November 17 and were arrested by Australian security forces on arrival at the Lear Mouth Beach on December 13.

SLPP nominations for Maharagama, Weligama rejected
[Thursday 2017-12-14 16:00]

The nominations submitted by the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) for the Maharagama Urban Council and Weligama Pradeshiya Sabha were rejected today. The SLPP nomination for Weilgama had been rejected by Matara District Returning Office Pradeep Ratnayaka on the ground that the nomination had not been submitted by a member of the party or an authorized agent. The returning officer had taken the decision after considering the objections raised by Provincial Council Minister Jayantha Pathirana (JVP) and other authorized agents of political parties.

North-East monsoon expected next week
[Thursday 2017-12-14 16:00]

The North-East monsoon is expected to hit the country next week, the Meteorology Department said yesterday. The Duty Meteorologist said necessary conditions for the North-East monsoon were being monitored. The North East monsoon feeds the irrigation tanks in the North, North Central, North Western and Eastern areas and helps the rice cultivation of the area. Accordingly, Meteorology Department said showery condition over the island is expected to enhance to some extent further today and tomorrow.

Mahinda’s party will disintegrate after local elections - Dayasiri
[Thursday 2017-12-14 16:00]

The Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) led by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa would fully disintegrate after the next local government elections, Co-Cabinet Spokesman and Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera predicted yesterday. Answering questions at the post Cabinet Press Briefing at the Information Department, Jayasekera said that attempts by President Maithripala Sirisena to unite the SLFP, had been sabotaged by MPs Namal Rajapaksa and Prassana Ranatunga.

Appeal against the acquittal of suspects in TNA MP's murder to be heard on February 16
[Wednesday 2017-12-13 18:00]

The Court of Appeal today fixed the date to hear the appeal filed against the verdict issued by a lower court in exonerating all the suspects in the murder of Tamil National Alliance parliamentarian Nadarajah Raviraj. Appeal Court Judge, Kumudini Wickremasinghe fixed February 16th to hear the petition when it was taken up before the court today. The petition filed by the wife of late MP Shashikala Raviraj seeks an order to set aside the verdict of the Colombo High Court to acquit and release all accused from the case.

Tamil prisoners’ CA appeal to be supported on 22 Feb.
[Wednesday 2017-12-13 18:00]

Court of Appeal yesterday (12) fixed for support on February 2 the petition filed Tamil prisoners seeking to transfer their case back to Vavuniya High Court from Anuradhapura High Court. The matter came up before Justice L.B.T.Dehideniya (President/CA) Attorney General on November 15 had informed the Court that it is being implored the possibility of transferring the Tamil prisoners’ case back to Vavuniya High Court from Anuradhapura High Court.

Indian Air Force Commander calls on President
[Wednesday 2017-12-13 18:00]

Indian Air Force Commander Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa called on President Maithripala Sirisena at the President’s Official residence yesterday. Air Force Commander Air Marshal Kapila Jayampathy and Indian High Commissioner in Colombo Shri Taranjit Singh Sandhu were present.

IAI plans to upgrade Sri Lanka's ageing Kfir fighter jets
[Wednesday 2017-12-13 18:00]

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) is in discussions with Sri Lanka to upgrade and return to service its Kfir fighter aircraft, according to the UK-based defense publication, Jane's Defence Weekly. Speaking to Jane's on 12 December, a senior IAI official said the company is in talks with the Sri Lankan government to upgrade and return to service its five grounded Kfir fighters.

Malaysian Prime Minister to visit Sri Lanka on December 17
[Wednesday 2017-12-13 18:00]

Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak will pay a two-day official visit to Sri Lanka starting from 17 December, the Malaysian Foreign Ministry said in a statement today. The Foreign Ministry Wisma Putra said in a "planned movement" the Malaysian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Wan Zaidi Wan Abdullah was reassigned and given a new assignment prior to the Prime Minister's visit.

Another UPFA JO MP to join Sirisena?
[Wednesday 2017-12-13 18:00]

A Ratnapura District United People's Freedom Alliance Parliamentarian, now a member of the Joint Opposition, is expected to extend his support to President Maithripala Sirisena, informed political sources said. It is learnt the initial discussions held with a view to supporting the President have thus far proven fruitful. The MP is soon to meet with the President and intimate to him that he is prepared to support the President and the Government, reports say.

President's letter to Naseby: PHU says govt. kept it a secret
[Tuesday 2017-12-12 18:00]

The Pivithuru Hela Urumaya (PHU) yesterday said a letter of thank sent by President Maithripala Sirisena to Lord Naseby had been kept concealed by the government due to the pressure of Tamil separatists. Addressing a news briefing, PHU Leader and MP Udaya Gammanpila said Lord Naseby of the British House of Lords made a statement in UK Parliament in October saying no war crime was committed in Sri Lanka. “The President has sent a letter on behalf of Sri Lanka thanking Lord Naseby. This should be commended but neither Sri Lanka nor the UK knows about this letter,” he said.

PC election could be held after March - AG
[Tuesday 2017-12-12 18:00]

The Attorney General yesterday informed the Supreme Court that Provincial Council elections could be held after March next year following the completion of the delimitation process. Additional Solicitor General Indika Demuni de Silva appearing on behalf of the Attorney General made these remarks pursuant to Fundamental Rights petitions filed by former Minister G.L. Peiris and six others challenging the enactment procedure of Provincial Council Election Bill which were taken up for support.

TNA confident of winning LG polls despite split
[Tuesday 2017-12-12 18:00]

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) says it is confident of winning the Local Government (LG) elections in the North and East despite a major split in the alliance. TNA spokesman and Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran said that three political parties will contest the LG elections together on behalf of the TNA under the Illangai Thamil Arasu Katchi.

Closing date for postal voting applications extended
[Tuesday 2017-12-12 18:00]

The closing date for postal voting applications for all 341 Local Government bodies has been extended until December 22, 2017, Additional Election Commissioner M.M. Mohammad yesterday said. He was speaking at a media briefing at the Police Headquarters last evening. The applications for postal votes for 93 LG bodies were called on November 28, 2017. Applications for the rest of the LG bodies were called for on December 4, 2017. Since there would be two deadlines for receiving postal vote applications, Mohammad said that a discussion was held to decide on a single date to conclude receiving applications.

Three more Aava thugs arrested
[Tuesday 2017-12-12 18:00]

Three members of the notorious criminal gang, the 'Aava' Group, were arrested from Tellippalai in Jaffna by the Police while they were carrying several weapons. The Police Media Spokesman's Office said that the suspects were arrested on 10 December night in a special operation carried out following a tip off that the armed thugs were threatening and terrorising several villagers in the Manippai and Tellippalai areas of Jaffna.

Constitutional Assembly debate postponed
[Tuesday 2017-12-12 18:00]

The Constitutional Assembly debate which was scheduled to be held yesterday (11) had to be postponed because the ten MPs who were entrusted with the task of discussing the Interim Report of the Constitutional Assembly were not present when the meeting was called to order. The meeting was called to order at 11:30 a.m. by its Chairman, Karu Jayasuriya. Due to this reason, the Chairman decided to postpone the meeting till the third week of January 2018.

Sixty law students pass out from Jaffna Uni Nearly half of them from the South
[Monday 2017-12-11 18:00]

Sixty law students passed out of the Jaffna University on Friday (Dec 8). Twenty four of them were from the South. The eighth batch of the Department of Law, University of Jaffna included the highest number of students from the South. The first five batches hadn’t included students from the South though the Jaffna peninsula was under government control since 1995. The 33rd General Convocation of University of Jaffna was held at the Kailasapillai hall.

Journalist attacked in Mullaitivu One assailant faces citizen’s arrest
[Monday 2017-12-11 18:00]

A journalist was attacked in Mullaitivu on Friday night, the Tamil Guardian reports. Three people on a motorcycle attempted to block the journalist, Subramaniam Baskaran, while he was riding his motorcycle in the Pandiankulam area of Mankulam in Mullaitivu. Although Baskaran attempted to swerve and escape, the assailants continued to chase after him on their motorcycle, which he noted did not have a registration plate. Baskaran sustained injuries to his head and arm. After managing to flee, Baskaran sought refuge in a three-wheeler park at the Mankulam junction. One of the attackers was caught by locals who had given chase and was handed over to police. Mankulam police are investigating the attack.

Parliamentary group condemns US decision on Jerusalem
[Monday 2017-12-11 18:00]

The Sri Lanka Palestine Parliamentary Friendship Society has condemned the US decision to recognise Jeruselam as the captial of Israel. The statement issued by Health Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne and MP Bimal Ratnayake on behalf of an all- party parliamentary group: "The Sri Lanka Palestine Parliamentary Friendship Society (SPPFS) condemns strongly the decision of US President Donald Trump to recognize Jerusalem as capital of Israel and transfer the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

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