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[26 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Resettling Tamils silently expelled from Champoor in Trincomalee

Following the election of Maithiripala Sirisena as new Sri Lankan President, the uprooted families from a section of the 5th Division and 7th Division of Champoor situated along both the sides of Champoor main road, started to clear their lands for resettlement. Their lands, seized by Colombo under the so-called ‘Special Economic Zone’ (SEZ) were to be handed over to a Chinese-owned corporate. The occupying Sri Lanka Navy was blocking the uprooted Tamils from resettling in their lands. Despite the [...]

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[23 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Protests erupt in Jaffna against continued militarisation, unemployment

The owners of five houses and lands that have been illegally seized by the Sri Lankan military for more than two decades at Koozhaavadi, situated on Maanippaay Road at Aanaik-koaddai in Jaffna protested on Wednesday against the attempt by Colombo to transform their lands into State property with the motive of permanently sustaining a war-time military camp, which was notorious for extra-judicial interrogations, abductions and disappearances since 1996. At the same time, unemployed graduates staged a protest in front of [...]

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[16 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
An unexpected change of power in Sri Lanka is good news for democracy

(By Editorial Board) SRI LANKAN President Mahinda Rajapaksa considered himself a shoo-in to win an unprecedented third term when he called an early election in November, and with some reason: He had presided over both victory in a 26-year-long civil war with Tamil insurgents and surging economic growth of 7 percent a year. The opposition had been cowed and criticism squelched by increasingly autocratic tactics.

Consequently, Mr. Rajapaksa’s surprising defeat by a former member of his cabinet, Maithripala Sirisena, after [...]

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[15 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Pope Francis at Madu: ‘Our Lady remained always with you’

Pope Francis on Wednesday paid a pilgrimage to Madu shrine, which is the famous pilgrim centre of Tamil Catholics, where even the Sinhalese Catholics of the western coast, who were Tamils a century ago, flock in for festivals. “No Sri Lankan can forget the tragic events associated with this very place, or the sad day when the venerable statue of Mary, dating to the arrival of the earliest Christians in Sri Lanka, was taken away from her shrine. But Our [...]

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[14 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Resettlement meaningless without guarantee against structural genocide in East

Governments may come and go, but the State of Sri Lanka gets strengthened in its genocidal project whether there is war, peace or talk of ‘change’, comment the resettled women of Mu’raa-oadai village, situated 5 km south of Vaazhaich-cheanai town in Batticaloa district. 400 houses have been destroyed. Two temples are damaged. Almost all the resettled families are women-headed households, poorest of the poor. The women of the village say: “It is only when we have permanent security from future [...]

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[12 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Sri Lanka leader delays cabinet picks

Sri Lanka’s new president on Monday again delayed naming a cabinet as he failed to reach agreement with partners in his wide-ranging coalition over apportioning ministerial portfolios.

Maithripala Sirisena originally pledged to form a government on Sunday, but aides said discussions were still under way.

Analysts have already warned that Sirisena, who ousted veteran strongman Mahinda Rajapakse in last week’s election, may struggle to satisfy the diverse coalition that backed his campaign.

"The cabinet is almost finalised, but there is some [...]

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[12 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
KP and Karuna have to be tried – Fonseka

(Adaderana ) Leader of the Democratic Party (DP) Sarath Fonseka says that former LTTE leaders such as Kumaran Pathmanathan and Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan would have to face legal action as they were once “hardcore terrorist” and that a probe will be launched into the whereabouts of seized LTTE assets.

The former international arms procurer of the Tamil Tigers, Kumaran Pathmanathan or ‘KP’ has been operating an orphanage for children affected by the war in Kilinochchi under the custody of the army [...]

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[12 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Ananthy urges Pope to see genocide, get answers from local, international players

As Pope Francis is scheduled to visit the island from Tuesday to Thursday, NPC Councillor Ms Ananthy Sasitharan, urged him to grasp the underlying factor of the conflict in the island, i.e. genocide and sought his help in getting answers from the government in Colombo and the international players, including the UN, the Co-chairs and India. “I hope Your Holiness is aware that there is an ideology behind the genocidal process,” she wrote in a letter addressed to the [...]

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[9 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Sri Lanka votes out Rajapaksa – Channel 4 News

Sri Lanka’s Mahinda Rajapaksa, a man accused of presiding over multiple war crimes, has lost his bid for a third term as Sri Lanka’s president.

Mr Rajapaksa conceded defeat to Maithripala Sirisena, his one time close ally, on Friday morning and is reported to have promised a smooth transition of power.

Seen by many as a hero after his government crushed terror group the LTTE at the end of Sri Lanka’s civil war, Mr Rajapaksa had confidently called the election two [...]

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[9 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Modi congratulates Sirisena for election as Lanka President

(PTI) Reaching out to President-elect of Sri Lanka Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today congratulated him on his electoral victory and said he looked forward to working with him to take the bilateral ties to a new level.

Modi first called up Sirisena and then wrote a letter to him, hailing his win and expressing India’s continued solidarity to Sri Lanka’s peace and development.

"I spoke to Shri Maithripala Sirisena and congratulated him.

[Full Coverage]

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[9 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Sri Lanka’s Rajapaksa suffers shock election defeat

Sri Lanka’s long-time leader Mahinda Rajapaksa has been defeated in the presidential election.

Official results showed Maithripala Sirisena, a former ally of the incumbent, had won 51.3% of the vote.

Mr Rajapaksa, in office since 2005, said on Twitter he looked forward to a peaceful transition of power.

His supporters credit him with ending the civil war and boosting the economy, but critics say he had become increasingly authoritarian and corrupt.

Mr Sirisena had already received promises of support from Tamil and Muslim [...]

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[8 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
SL military divided over voting in North

Despite the tension about possible violence in Tamil areas by the occupying Sinhala military and its paramilitary, all arrangements necessary for brisk polling have completed in the two provinces, according to Sri Lankan Government Agents in the North and East. Voters were seen at many polling stations in queue. In the meantime, Sri Lankan military intelligence had stepped up disinformation campaign to divert the voting to another ‘Sirisena’ contesting the elections under the symbol of flag. While a section of [...]

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[7 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Tamil will expressed only by distancing from racist election: Jude Lal

Mahinda Rajapaksa and Maithiripala Sirisena cannot be seen as the greater evil and the lesser evil respectively, says Professor Jude Lal of Trinity College, Dublin, in an interview to TamilNet on Wednesday. The democratic rights of the Tamils and the democratic rights of the Sinhalese are not the same as the so-called Sinhala pro-democracy campaign claims, the director of Centre for Post-Conflict Justice at Trinity College argues, underlining the fact that the promise of democracy by the so-called Sinhala pro-democracy [...]

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[7 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Leaders should enlighten gullible masses, not hide behind them: Thiyagu

Those among the Tamils of Tamil Eelam, who expect change in their favour from a future Maithiripala regime are going to be deceived as the sections of Tamils in Tamil Nadu, who were gullible enough to expect change from Modi and got deceived, said veteran activist Thoazhar Thiyagu from Tamil Nadu, responding to the write-ups that originated from disillusioned sections among the Tamil-speaking writers, who have been posting their views to blog sites and email discussion groups defending the position [...]

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[7 Jan 2015 | Comments Off | ]
Ananthy’s house stoned in Jaffna

Unknown attackers stoned the house of Tamil National Alliance (TNA) councillor in the Northern Province, Ms Ananthy Sasitharan, in the early hours of Tuesday, threatening the NPC councillor and her three children while they were sleeping at their residence located at Vadakkamparai in Chuzhipuram in Valikaamam West, Jaffna. Ms Ananthy and her children narrowly escaped from a stone that went through the window inside the house. The attack comes after Ms Sasitharan warned a local media, DAN TV, which backs [...]