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The United States' top intelligence agency, Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) says that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) is the most dangerous and deadly extremist organization in the world. The official website of FBI in its tops story said that LTTE is far more dangerous terrorists outfit than al Queda, Hezbullah or even HAMAS. Read more...

 

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‘Hardcore Tigers’ held at Boosa want police probes expedited – LLRC - Hardcore LTTE cadres detained at Boossa want the government to expedite investigations into their alleged involvement in terrorist activities.  They urged the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) on Thursday (Dec. 30) to intervene on their behalf.  A spokesperson for the LLRC told The Island that they had had an opportunity to meet 20 detainees between 10.30 a.m. and 4 p.m. as part of the on-going consultations in keeping with its mandate.  The LLRC launched its sittings last August at the Kadirgamar Centre for International Relations at Horton Place.  The official said that the LLRC had met the parents of the 20 detainees during field visits to the Northern and Eastern Provinces since last August.  The spokesman said: "The detainees were pleased to hear that their parents had got an opportunity to meet members of the LLRC during public sittings in the North and East. They didn’t complain about the general condition of the detention facility, but emphasised the need for investigations conducted by the police to be expedited."  According to him, the 20 detainees were among those held at Boossa by the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID).  The LLRC said that the Boossa meeting had not been a public sitting. "We wanted to speak with those who had been held on charges that they had carried out clandestine missions in the South causing death and destruction. They weren’t ordinary LTTE fighting cadres, who faced the Army on the battlefields but carried out operations targeting military, political, economic and civilian targets," the official said in answer to a question.  The police headquarters denied the electronic and print media an opportunity to cover the LLRC’s meeting with LTTE cadres, though the media had been invited by the LLRC with the approval of the Media Centre for National Security (MCNS).  Sources said that the LLRC had recommended several interim measures for the benefit of the Tamil speaking people in the aftermath of the war. The LLRC, headed by former Attorney General C. R. de Silva, recommended urgent steps to tackle the language and land issues, disarming of all armed groups, special mechanism to handle cases of LTTE detainees and ways and means of giving their families access to them.  The LLRC will visit villages in the Anuradhapura District, which were targeted by the LTTE during the war. The LLRC is likely to schedule Anuradhapura visit for late January (Island : 31 December 2010).

Panel will not only talk to LLRC - The United Nations has reiterated that its expert panel would not only talk to Sri Lanka’s Lessons Learnt & Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), the Inner City Press reported today. Responding to an email questionnaire sent by the Inner City Press, UN spokesmen Farhan Haq had said “..as I made clear to you at the time, the panel has not confirmed travel to Sri Lanka yet. The arrangements would need to be right. It is NOT the case that the panel would only talk to the LLRC. The panel made clear to me that their work is broader than simply dealing with the LLRC. That's all we have to say on it for now.” The government said yesterday it would issue visas for the United Nations expert panel to visit Sri Lanka and meet the LLRC, if and when such a request was made by the UN Secretary General’s office. “They will not be permitted to carry out investigations, record evidence or visit places of their choice without prior government approval,” Media Minister Keheliya Rambuklwella said (Daily Mirror : 31 December 2010).

Sri Lanka can be proud - The United States today said that the Sri Lankan government has every right to be proud of its progress in resettlement. “None of us can forget the enormous challenges that Sri Lanka faced at the end of the war and how far the country has come since then in meeting these overwhelming physical needs. The Sri Lankan government has every right to be proud of its progress in resettlement and we are also proud to have contributed to this massive effort,” stated U.S. Ambassador Patricia A. Butenis. She was speaking at an event to announce a new donation from the USAID of $5.5 million (Rs. 610.5 million) of food aid to support the return of people displaced by the conflict in the North. Minister of Economic Development Basil Rajapaksa received the donation in Colombo today, the US embassy in Colombo announced (Daily Mirror ; 31 December 2010).

Northern bound Yal Devi to reach Omanthai - The Yal Devi train which is now plying between Colombo and Thandikulam via Vavuniya on the peace path to the North is prepared to reach Omanthai from next month. The extension of the rail track beyond Vavuniya and the rebuilding of stations are now in progress incurring a huge expenditure. Accordingly, to reach Kankesanthurai in Jaffna, 159 kilometres of the rail track had to be rebuilt from Vavuniya. It includes 16 railway stations, 12 sub stations and 85 bridges. The leading Indian Railway Construction Company, IRCON has undertaken reconstruction of the line. The new signalling and tele-communication network system will also be established on the Northern railway line under this project. Construction of the track from Thandikulam to Omanthai is in the final stage. Accordingly, the Railway department is confident that it would be possible to operate the Yal Devi train up to Omanthai from next month (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 31 December 2010).

UN Panel could only visit LLRC; No investigations will be allowed; Even Tamil Diaspora could meet LLRC

UN Panel could only visit LLRC; No investigations will be allowed; Even Tamil Diaspora could meet LLRC - The Government will allow the UN Secretary General’s panel to visit the country and meet only the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), Cabinet Spokesman and Mass Media and Information Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said. Minister Rambukwella addressing the weekly Cabinet briefing yesterday said that, the Government would grant visas to the panel members only to go before the LLRC which was appointed by the Government on the directive of the President. However, being an independent and sovereign country, the government will not allow the UN panel to conduct any investigations of their own. Minister Rambukwella said the Government initially objected to the Panel’s visit to Sri Lanka, as it was to conduct an inquiry. However, the government has decided to grant visas to the Panel since it has been stated that the members will only meet the LLRC. Responding to a journalist the Minister noted that the government’s stance remains unchanged that the panel has no rights to conduct any inquiry in the country. The government is dealing only with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon but not with the panel. Therefore, the government will not let the UN panel to probe allegations of war crimes. “The Government will not allow the panel to carry out its investigations in Sri Lanka. What we have done now is to allow the panel to be present at the LLRC. Any one can give evidence to the LLRC since the LLRC sessions are open to everyone,” the Minister added. The Minister said that the government welcomes anyone who wishes to give evidence at the LLRC. Even the Tamil Diaspora has been requested to give evidence at the commission. Accepting or rejecting of such evidence is a matter for the LLRC. When the Minister was asked whether the UN panel has applied for government approval to visit the country, the Minister said that the panel has not yet applied officially (Daily News : 31 December 2010).

Government express standpoint on UN team’s visit to Sri Lanka - Government confirmed today that it will allow the three member team, which was appointed by the United Nation Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in June to enter Sri Lanka and give evidence at the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Committee. Minister of Information Keheliya Rambukwella stated that circumstances are different from the past, which lead to allow this three member team to enter into Sri Lanka. “The panel was appointed by United Nation Secretary General to look into alleged war crimes in the final stage of the Government’s fight against terrorism with the LTTE last year. We as a sovereign and independent nation expressed our dislike and deep concern of such team being appointed by the UN and prevented them from entering into Sri Lanka. However, they are coming here on a different purpose but will be prevented from conducting any investigations or inquiries but merely provide whatever the evidence they like to present in front of the LLRC,” explained Minister Rambukwella. In response to a statement issued by the main opposition United National Party, Minister Rambukwella went on to say that President Mahinda Rajapaksa is “flexible and was willing to allow the U team to visit Sri Lanka. However, until now they have not applied for visa. Not only the UN team we have opened the doors to anybody including the Tamil Diasporas to visit Sri Lanka and give evidence at LLRC. In Sri Lanka we follow a higher degree of democracy,” he said (Asian Tribune : 31 December 2010).

UN Panel permitted to enter Sri Lanka *Only to testify before LLRC, not probe war crimes allegations - Keheliya - The government yesterday claimed that the UN Panel which was probing allegations of war crimes against its security forces,has been granted permisssion to enter Sri Lanka and testify before the Lessons Learnt and Reconcilliation Commission and not to carry out any investigations of its own.  Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwalle addressing yesterday’s cabinet press briefing in Colombo,said that the UN Panel had earlier been refused visas,because it had wanted to meet various persons,which if allowed would have been a violation of Sri Lanka’s sovereignty.  "We,have now granted the UN Panel permission to enter Sri Lanka for the express purpose of testifying before the LLRC.They,will not be able to conduct any investigations of their own."  Any one including the Tamil diaspora was welcome to testify before the LLRC.Acceptance or rejection of such evidence was the prerogative of the Commission,Rambukwalle said.  Sri Lanka,he said was a non aligned conutry and will be guided by such a policy.  Dismissing criticism of the UN Panel’s impending visit to Sri Lanka, he said that some people cannot differentiate between granting permission to investigate the activities of a legally constituted government and testifying before a legally established Commission.  The UPFA government,he said comprises of 22 political parties and they had the freedom to express their views on any matter (Island : 30 December 2010).

Sri Lanka says U.N. panel can not conduct own war crimes probe - Sri Lanka said on Thursday it would not allow a U.N. panel to conduct an independent probe into the country's 25-year war, a few weeks after reversing a ban on U.N. members taking part in a controversial, local investigating body.  The government said in a statement the U.N. panel can only testify before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), a state-created body that human rights groups say lacks the credibility, and impartiality, needed to look into alleged human rights violations by the military against Tamil Tiger rebels, especially in the last few months of the conflict.  "The U.N. panel will be given visas only to testify before the LLRC if they request (that) and not for any investigations," government spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella told reporters in Colombo.  "This is the government stance and there is no change in that. The U.N. has so far not requested visa in this regard."  The government statement came in response to demands by opposition parties to clarify a December 19 statement that President Mahinda Rajapaksa would allow a three-member panel appointed by the U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon into the country to take part in the LLRC.  Sri Lanka has vigorously fought against Western pressure to allow an international investigation into allegations that war crimes were committed during the final months of a 25-year civil war with the Tamil Tiger separatists.  Human rights groups, Tamil pressure groups overseas and some Western governments accuse the Sri Lankan government of responsibility for what they say are thousands of civilian deaths or other atrocities that could constitute war crimes (Reuters Africa : 30 December 2010).

Karuna deplores ‘US embassy lies’ - Deputy Minister Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan aka Karuna strongly denies former US Ambassador in Colombo Robert Blake’s claim that he fled Sri Lanka and secured refuge in Tamil Nadu in early 2004 with the help of the then President Chandrika Kumaratunga.  "Ambassador Blake’s accusation is absurd," the National List MP told The Island.  According to him, the US mission in Colombo, on the basis of unsubstantiated information received from those described as ‘trusted contacts’ in confidential US diplomatic cables had accused his former outfit (the TMVP) of illegal military operations directed at the LTTE.  Blake in a secret diplomatic cable dated May 18, 2007, alleged that Karuna had directed his cadres while being in Tamil Nadu, where he remained till July 2006.  Citing an embassy contact, Blake alleged that Karuna with the help of EPDP leader Minister Douglas Devananda had carried out the assassination of TULF MP Joseph Pararajasingham on Dec. 25, 2005.  Citing the same source, Blake alleged that Karuna cadres assassinated TULF MP N. Raviraj on Nov. 10, 2006 in Colombo.  Karuna quit the LTTE in March 2004 after he reached an understanding with the Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI) and subsequently worked with the SLN Intelligence in some parts of the Eastern Province.  Sources said that nothing could be as ridiculous as the allegation that Karuna and Devananda worked together in the East or any other part of the country.  Among the embassy contacts are believed to be those, who had access to high ranking officials responsible for overall military strategy against the LTTE at the height of the war. Sources alleged that those so-called trusted contacts of Ambassador Blake could have given uncorroborated information not only to the Americans but many other Colombo based embassies. Sources said that Ambassador Blake went to the extent of alleging the breakaway Tamil para-military personnel, particularly the EPDP of operating brothels for Sri Lankan soldiers.  Deputy Minister Karuna regretted that the US embassy had briefed Washington on the basis of unsubstantiated information with regard to Sri Lanka’s security strategy during the Eelam war IV. Military sources said that in spite of making wild allegations against the Sri Lankan political and military leaderships, the US provided significant support to defeat the LTTE. President Mahinda Rajapaksa publicly acknowledged the US ‘intelligence’ backing for attacks directed against LTTE ships on the high seas.  Government sources said that on the basis of advice provided by their diplomats based in Colombo, a section of the international community had targeted Sri Lanka over accountability issues. The EU wouldn’t have denied GSP plus trade concessions without its mission in Colombo making a case against Sri Lanka, sources said. Similarly the ongoing EU probe, too, would have been prompted by a section of Colombo-based diplomats close to the LTTE lobby, sources said (Island : 30 December 2010).

Moon Panel: Some ‘Jumbo’ questions - The UNP appears to be using the Moon Panel as a bludgeon to beat the government. It is demanding that either Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne or External Affairs Minister Prof. Peiris reveal the government’s position on that panel’s proposed visit to Sri Lanka. Former Foreign Minister of the Rajapaksa government and present UNP MP Mangala Samaraweera wants them to do so when Parliament meets on January 04, 2011.  True, the government has been blowing hot and cold on the Moon Panel. When it was appointed, the government rightly condemned it as an attempt to interfere in Sri Lanka’s sovereignty and denied the panel members visas to visit here. But, recently, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon set the cat among the pigeons by claiming that President Mahinda Rajapaksa had agreed to allow those personae non gratae to meet the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).  The Moon Panel has been set up and asked to do a job just like the investigators handpicked by President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair to investigate and find out whether Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. The UNSG has been contracted by the West to facilitate its war crimes witch hunt against Sri Lanka and he is trying to give his panel a semblance of credibility and legitimacy by duping the Sri Lankan government into recognising it in some way.  Mr. Samaraweera has an axe to grind with the government and he is obviously playing politics with a very sensitive diplomatic issue. However, one cannot but agree with him that the government ought to reveal its position on the Moon Panel’s visit. We learn that Prof. Peiris is going to make a statement in Parliament on the issue shortly. There are some questions that need to be posed to the Grand Old Party. What’s the UNP’s stand on the Moon Panel and its proposed visit to Sri Lanka? Does it agree with the government that the appointment of such a panel is tantamount to a severe blow to Sri Lanka’s sovereignty and independence? Does the UNP subscribe to the claim in some quarters that the Sri Lankan military committed war crimes? MP Sajith Premadasa has rejected that claim out of hand and insisted that only the LTTE committed war crimes. But he is not the leader of the UNP. Does the UNP leader endorse Sajith’s position? (Island : 30 December 2010).

Letter to Rahul Gandhi - by Asoka weerasinghe, Canada - SENT BY AIR MAIL - Mr. Rahul Gandhi Member of Parliament for Amethi, Uttar Pradesh Leader of the Indian National Congress 10, Dr. Bishambhar Dar Marg NewDelhi 110 001, Delhi, India. Dear Rahul: A Happy New Year and hope it will be a good one for you capped with geo-political Wisdom and Maturity. You have surprised me with your statement that Sri Lankan Government is “not doing enough” for the Tamils in Sri Lanka and that you would ensure they get justice. Wow! That’s mighty talk Rahul. Are you echoing what your Grandma and Dad said about Sri Lanka? You seem to have picked up the song that your Grandma Indira had to stop before she finished the last bar because she was assassinated by a Sikh for taking the most fatal step of storming the Sikhs Golden Temple, the most critical policy decision of her life; the song that your Dad, Rajiv, thought he could continue and finish off, but he too had to pack it up abruptly while he too was trying to find the harmony to pander to the Tamil Nadu politicians as he too was assassinated by the very Sri Lankan Tamils he thought he was helping. And now you….just be careful Rahul as the Sri Lankan Tamil issue has no place in Indian politics. And more over it is none of your business and it is anointed with bad, negative vibs. “The bastards!” you may have cursed the Tamil Tigers, your Grandma’s prodigies under your breath as a young 21 year old when you circled the wood pyre where your Dad’s body lay before you set it alight at Shakti Sthal on the banks of the Jamuna as the last salute to your Dad who was a wonderful Dad to you. And now you have picked up the song where your Dad had to stop, but I am afraid Rahul you are still singing the song off key as it lacks truth, it lacks chords of honesty, and it lacks harmony and have dischords of the Tamil Nadu politics. What you should know is that any permutation of Tamil Nadu politics and the Tamils of Sri Lanka is a deadly combination, as it seems cursed to fail. No two words about it. Just be careful as you don’t need such popular Tamil Nadu politics like a hole in your head. Let me remind you that the 5,280 page Justice Milap Chand Jain’s report comprising eight volumes of interim findings of the murder of your Dad, Rajiv Gandhi, and nine volumes of annexures bound in black rexine, hold Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi and his DMK responsible for abetting your Dad’s murderers. Unfortunately domestic politics have thrust you to deal with this man and he is now guiding your destiny too as he did of your Dad’s, getting you involved with the Sri Lankan Tamil issue, which I would say is a non-issue as they are a privileged minority, much more so than most of your minorities in India. These Sri Lankan Tamils are blessed in every which way. And that is a fact (LankaWeb : 30 December 2010).

Sri Lanka Eliminates Terrorism and Restores Right To Life Of All Her Citizens - by Mahinda Gunasekera Toronto, Ontario Canada - The UN Advisory Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka UN Secretariat New York, NY. Dear Members of the Advisory Panel, Sri Lanka Eliminates Terrorism and Restores Right To Life Of All Her Citizens, I am writing with particular reference to the submission made by the National Council of Canadian Tamils (NCCT) titled ‘Towards Global Justice: Accountability for War Crimes in Sri Lanka’ which has also been endorsed by four Canadian politicians who are dependant on the votes of the members of the Tamil Diaspora in their respective ridings. Looking at the signatory organizations and the logo of the NCCT which includes the Poisonous Lily incorporated by the internationally designated terrorist group known as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE aka the Tamil Tigers) to commemorate their fallen cadres, clearly indicates that this organization is a proxy group or front of the same terrorist movement (LankaWeb : 30 December 20101).

Tamil Education Director Killed for Speaking Against Sinhala Only National Anthem; A Sri Lankan Right Group Says - A Sri Lankan Right Group condemned the recent murder of Jaffna Deputy Education Director who criticized government’s decision to abolish Tamil version of National Anthem. “Killing a person for expressing his disapproval of such a policy is not only a violation of his freedom of expression but also of his right to life.” Networking for Rights (NfR) said in a statement. “…52-year-old Markandu Sivalingam, the Deputy Director of Education is reported to have openly criticized this decision of the government which had issued a circular directing that the National Anthem should be sung only in Sinhala at the ceremony and had disapproved the call for the participation of school children at the ceremony” statement says further. Meanwhile quoting “media sources” pro-LTTE Tamilnet says the assassination has been planned by Sri Lankan forces. However Sri Lanka government denied NfR’s allegation, claiming that they did not issued such circular. “The statement by the NfR appears to be an attempt to interfere with the police investigations in to these two killings by seeking to give these tragic incidents an unwarranted political coloring, and also to discredit the government by this means” Government Information Department’s statement says. However several government ministers earlier confirmed to media that Cabinet has decided to sing National Anthem only in Sinhala. The Complete Text of the statement issued by NfR is as follows (Nidahasa : 30 December 20101).

Visa for UN panel - Visa will be given to the UN panel to enter Sri Lanka only to testify before Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission(LLRC), Cabinet Spokesman and Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said today (Daily Mirror : 30 December 2010).

Karuna claimed Norway gave LTTE money

Deputy Minister Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan says Sri Lanka should investigate the role played by Norwegian Development and Environment Minister Erik Solheim (read details).

Please read following reports :

Why not investigate Norway ?

Solheim responds to allegations targeting Norway at LLRC In SL lies are used for political gains or to taint someone’s reputation’ Karuna reiterates call for probe on Tiger revenue sources - Deputy Minister Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan says Sri Lanka should investigate the role played by Norwegian Development and Environment Minister Erik Solheim in the peace process launched in 2002, particularly his alleged involvement in financial transactions with the LTTE on behalf of the Norwegian government.  He was responding to a statement attributed to Minister Solheim in the Norwegian media subsequent to the former LTTE commander’s recent evidence before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC). National List MP Muralitharan told the LLRC that the LTTE utilized money received from Norway to procure armaments.  Minister Solheim told the Norwegian media that Minister Muralitharan’s charge was absurd. The former Norwegian peace facilitator alleged that Minister Muralitharan was making ‘totally absurd’ claims. Solheim said: "In Sri Lanka lies are used for political gains, to taint someone’s reputation or to seek attention. What the case is here, I do not know."  An irate Muralitharan said that a thorough inquiry should be launched to establish the amount of funds received by the LTTE not only from the Norwegian government but other donors as well.  According to the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) document calling for open invitation-for-tender for evaluation of Norwegian peace efforts in Sri Lanka from 1997 to 2009, Norway had allocated approximately NOK 100 million for the peace process,  including the Scandinavian truce monitoring mission and the Peace Secretariats set up by Sri Lanka and the LTTE. The NORAD said that NOK 100 million had been included in NOR 2.5 billion categorized as Norwegian development cooperation for 1997-2009 period.  Minister Muralitharan said now that Norway had acknowledged it spent NOK 100 million on the peace process and a part of it given to the LTTE Peace Secretariat, it should be able to provide a breakdown of the allocation.  Sources close to the failed peace process told The Island that even one and half years after the LTTE collapse, the government was yet to initiate an inquiry into financial transactions involving the LTTE. Sources alleged that international funds had been used to procure arms, ammunition and equipment, in some instances with the knowledge of the then UNF government.  Bradman Weerakoon, the then Secretary to Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe, contributed a revealing piece to ‘Negotiating Peace in Sri Lanka’-volume II funded by Norway and the Berghof Foundation, in which he discussed Norway using its diplomatic privilege to import radio equipment worth $ 93,265 bought by the LTTE in Singapore and then transferring it to the Sri Lanka Peace Secretariat to be handed over to the LTTE Peace Secretariat. Weerakoon said: "Since duty would become payable as soon as ‘diplomatic goods’were transferred to Sri Lankan non-government hands, the SL Peace Secretariat became liable to the payment of about Rs 3 million as duty. This payment which was effected by the SL peace Secretariat was duly set off against the grant of around Rs 12 million which the Norwegian government annually gave the SL Peace Secretariat for its running." (Island ; 29 December 2010).

NGOs and Rama Mani - By Sam Akurugoda, Melbourne, Australia A writer, who happened to be a member  ( since 1953 to 1998) of our highly unsuccessful diplomatic missions to counter the propaganda machinery of the LTTE, has echoed his sympathy for notable NGO activists in an article under the title ‘NGOs and Rama Mani’ appeared one of the local daily news paper last week. The writer begins his own fulmination saying “Fulminations have been going on against the NGOs for many long years, but as far as I can make out hardly anything really serious has been established against them, except in a few instances. The local NGOs most under attack have been the ICES, the Centre for Policy Alternatives, and the National Peace Council, but they continue to flourish regardless. One is forced to the conclusion that the fulminations have behind them racists and ultranationalists who have unbalanced views about the NGOs because the latter speak up for the minorities. The former, I believe, constitute a major problem for Sri Lanka, not the NGOs. Let us rush through some of the above claims (Sri Lanka News Online : 29 December 2010).

Rahul Gandhi’s stance on Tamil issue - Rahul Gandhi’s (RG) criticism of Sri Lanka’s rehabilitation, reconstruction and resettlement programme and its progress must be treated as stones thrown at the Sri Lankan Govt. from a Glass House!.  RG alleges that the SL Govt "is not doing enough for Sri Lankan Tamils" (The Island 25.12.10). It is not necessary here to refer to the massive development programme that has been undertaken and continues to progress as regards the issues cited by RG above. RG, without having visited the areas under reconstruction has the cheek to spout such nonsense purely on hearsay, with Sri Lanka haters in Tamil Nadu, such as its Chief Minsiter, M. Karunanidhi, Vaiko, et al being his sources of information. There are still thousands of Sri Lankan Tamil refugees in Tamil Nadu. These are the unfortunates who had to flee to India to escape the ethnic violence committed by both Tamils and Sinhalese during the past 30 years or so. They still live in atrocious conditions. This has continued over a much longer period than the bare two years (less actually!) the Sri Lanka Govt. has had to alleviate the plight of the IDPs here. Gandhi apparently is ignorant of or ignores the fact that many foreign visitors to the North, including Indian diplomats and other officials, officials from the UN and affiliated bodies and sundry others have praised the Sri Lanka Govt’s., efforts as regards IDP resettlement. Not surprisingly, the UNP has come out strongly in support of Rahul Gandhi’s charges. Earlier, we had its Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya supporting a call for an international commission to inquire into alleged "war crimes" by S. Lanka. Now the UNP claims little has been done as regards the "Tamil Problem" to date. The massive reduction in the number of IDPs since May ’09, the numerous rehabilitation, infra-structural and development programmes etc. appear to have gone unnoticed (Island : 29 December 2010).

Probe India’s refusal to help in anti-LTTE operations – Swamy - Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy on Tuesday demanded that the Union government set up a Commission of Inquiry into India’s role in the 2008-09 anti-LTTE terrorist operations in Sri Lanka and its national security implications.  The UPA government’s refusal to provide heavy artillery and air force support for the Sri Lanka operation against the LTTE had enabled Pakistan to set up a base in the island by providing the requested military assistance, he alleged. Dr. Swamy said that his party would work for the defeat of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam in the coming Assembly elections. He told a press conference here that the political affairs committee of the State unit would meet in Madurai on January 18.  The party would contest more seats on the plank of combating corruption, he added.  He expressed apprehension that the election would see a number of empty promises, including free houses for all. "Whether these promises would be translated into reality, no one knows."  Dr. Swamy also announced that he would move the court if all the allotments of house sites and flats/houses made under the government discretionary quota were not cancelled by Pongal. "This scam is as big as that of Adarsh Housing Society scandal of Mumbai." (Island : 29 December 2010).

OPA perplexed by British contradictory stance - The Organization of Professional Associations (OPA) of Sri Lanka, the umbrella organization of 43 professional bodies representing over fifty thousand professionals of the nation, expresses its deep disappointment and condemnation regarding the Oxford University Student Union’s unilateral decision to cancel the lecture of the President of Sri Lanka, over security threats from sympathizers of the LTTE, a proscribed terrorist organization in the United Kingdom. The OPA is therefore perplexed as to how security was not provided for this occasion when it was ostensibly extended to those who flaunted the flags of the LTTE contravening UK Law, states OPA President Uditha H Palihakkara in a release. The release states, “The professional communities of the UK and Sri Lanka have close ties. Many of our members are Fellows of British professional bodies and have benefited from the ethics and broad-mindedness instilled in them by these bodies. The OPA is aware that these are values that are not confined to the British professional circles; they are beacons to her national psyche. More than anything else, it is this which pains us: that the Oxford Student Union, a hallowed institution of a friendly nation slighted the goodwill shown to it by the Sri Lankan Head of State and thereby bowed to the bluster of the remnants of an outfit that had dealt with communities, both in Sri Lanka and abroad, solely in atrocity, cruelty and inhumanity (Daily News : 29 December 2010).

Karuna claimed Norway gave LTTE money – Asian Tribune - A Deputy Minister in Sri Lanka's government claims that Norway gave money to the Tamil separatist movement's buying of weapons. - Absurd, says the Minister for Development and Environment Erik Solheim. The statements from the deputy minister Vinayagamoorthi Muralitharan, formerly known as an LTTE-leader under the name of Karuna, surfaced as he witnessed for the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) before Christmas. Norway and Sri Lanka shall according to plans improve their bilateral relations in the year to come. Muralitharan is a memeber of Sri Lanka's government headed by President Mahinda Rajapakse. Rajapakse did this fall meet with Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and Erik Solheim in New York. Solheim shall according to plans visit Sri Lanka in the coming year. According to the Sri Lankan net journal lankajournal.com Muralitharan said that that Norway gave LTTE large amounts of money for the purchase of weapons during the ceasefire agreement in 2002. - Norway wanted to achieve something for itself during the ceasefire Agreement, which was the reason why it participated in the agreement process, he said. - The money that LTTE received from Norway was used for buying weapons and ammunition, he added. Answering a question from the Commission about whether the LTTE had bribed Solheim, Muralitharan according to the newspaper said that 'he was not aware of such a situation'. But he claimed that former President Ranasinghe Premadasa during his Presidency had given money and weapon to the LTTE. Erik Solheim denies the claims categorically. - These are totally absurd claims, he says to NTB about the statements of Muralitharan/Karuna. - Karuna has made similar claims before which he subsequently confirmed were lies. In Sri Lanka lies are used for political gains, to taint someone's reputation or to seek attention. What is the case here, I do not know, says Solheim. Muralitharan, alias Karuna, participated in the peace process and visited Norway as member of the LTTE delegation in the fall of 2003. He was head of the separatist movement eastern Sri Lanka. Later he severed relations with the north and began cooperation with government forces. According to our own reports Karuna never denied the statement that he originally gave to the Asian Tribune (Asian Tribune : 29 December 2010).

SL Tamils’ issue : Singh’s exit, Rahul’s entry - When Rahul Gandhi visited the Tamil Nadu recently, he declared ‘Sri Lanka (SL) is not doing enough for the Tamils’. The Government of SL cannot dismiss this statement as another of those of the Indian Congress Govt. on the ground that it is an announcement of Gandhi to please the Tamil voters in Tamil Nadu. Despite Manmohan Singh, the Indian Prime Minister echoing the same sentiment, and the Indian Foreign Minister as well as the Indian Foreign Secretary reiterating this stance many times, yet it is impossible for the SL Govt. to be indifferent to Gandhi’s announcement.  When Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Karunanidhi wrote to Sonia Gandhi regarding the issues of the Sri Lankan Tamils , she too expressed the same view . In any case it is significant to note that this was the first occasion Rahul Gandhi made such an announcement. Besides , he expressed this statement after traveling to Tamil Nadu where the issue of the Tamil population in SL is always given top priority , and when he was at top gear encouraging and alerting the Congress Alliance in Tamil Nadu in view of the forthcoming Tamil Nadu elections 2011 following the defeat of the Congress party at the elections in Bihar State. Indeed he was the one who led the election campaign at Bihar on behalf of the Congress party. From Bihar he came to the Tamil Nadu state with a view to retrieving the prestige and image he lost in Bihar , by seeking to gain victory at the up coming Tamil Nadu elections (Daily Mirror : 29 December 2010).

India offers training slots for Sri Lankan military personnel - Despite the defence personnel training academies being almost full, India on Tuesday offered training placements for the Sri Lankan security personnel.  This was part of a series of measures that were agreed upon to enhance defence cooperation between the two countries.  The training offer was conveyed by the visiting Indian Defence Secretary, Pradeep Kumar, to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa when he called on the President at his official residence, Temple Trees, here on Tuesday.  During the meeting, it was agreed that the two countries will have a joint naval exercise in the Sri Lankan waters in 2011. Also, an annual defence dialogue and staff-level talks between the Navy and armies of the two countries will begin from next year.  On behalf of the Indian Air Force, Mr. Kumar accepted an invitation to participate in the diamond jubilee celebrations of the Sri Lankan Air Force next year. The Air Force chief is scheduled to come here for talks later this month. The Indian Army chief and the Navy chief had held discussions with their counterparts here.  Mr. Kumar told Mr. Rajapaksa that the prevailing good defence relationship between the two nations should be expanded and strengthened.  He said the Defence Dialogue should be further expanded to include the Army and the Navy.  “I am happy over the manner in which the discussions went. We will continue the discussions,” he told The Hindu.  Mr. Rajapaksa welcomed the initiatives to strengthen defence cooperation, a release from the President's office said.  The decision to institute the annual Defence Dialogue was agreed during a meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Mr. Rajapaksa in June.  Earlier, Mr. Kumar paid homage to the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) troops killed by the LTTE.  The Indian delegation that held multi-pronged talks with Sri Lankan Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapakasa and Foreign Minister G.L. Peiris included Indian High Commissioner Ashok Kantha; Smitha Nagaraj, Joint Secretary (PIC), Ministry of Defence; Tirumurti, Joint Secretary (BSM), Ministry of External Affairs; Sumer Singh Additional Director General Military Operations (A), Ministry of Defence (Army); Rear Admiral A. Chawla MoD (Navy); Air Vice Marshal B.S. Dhanoa, Air Headquarters; DIG K.R. Suresh Director (Operations) Coast Guard Headquarters (Hindu : 29 December 2010).

Reject the Moon panel - by Ranjith Soysa - Ban ki-moon's panel on Sri Lanka was indeed incongruous to say the least after the UN Human Rights Council rejected with the support of the majority nations an investigation into the last stages of the war against the LTTE.  It was also observed that the SG had exceeded the powers prescribed in chapter 15 of the UN Charter covering the functions of the Chief Administrative Officer. To add insult to injury the Chairman of the Moon panel, Marzuki Darusman and the panel member Stephen Ratner through their past actions are considered to be prejudiced, disqualified and are not expected to be fair in handling the issues assigned to them.  Therefore, the recent signals originating from Sri Lanka end indicating that the panel will be accommodated in some form in Sri Lanka were confusing as the vast majority of Sri Lankans, as they should are engaged in consolidating peace won after 35 years and working towards economic development.  Sri Lankan Government under the leadership of Mahinda Rajapaksa was resolute in defeating the terrorists and they had the vision to identify the nation’s enemies, even the wolves in sheep's clothing.  It is disheartening to see that the Government's present unenviable stance either due to wrong directions given by the short-sighted opportunists or due to the unholy attempts of the foreign funded front organizations promising crumbs from the 'rich'. In either way, the Sri Lankan people who suffered long owing to 'the armed separatists' conspiracy, the heroic soldiers who fought the enemy and the families of the soldiers who sacrificed their lives to save the Motherland stand perplexed.  They expect Mahinda Rajapakse government to stand firm and say that the Ban Ki-moon panel is not recognized by Sri Lanka (Island : 28 December 2010).  (Re-produced in Sri Lanka News Online ; 29 December 2010).

Moon’s ‘three stooges’ and related matters - By S. L. Gunasekara - Conflicting news items about a proposed visit to Sri Lanka, with the blessings of the Government, of the ‘Three Stooges’ of Ban Ki Moon have come virtually simultaneously with a sudden glut of anti-Sri Lanka statements made by various foreign politicians such as William Hague, the former ‘attempted Prime Minister’ of the once ‘Great’ Britain, and currently, the successor to the presumptuous clown David Miliband as Foreign Secretary, and some assorted Senators of the United States of America, who are said to have called for an international investigation into alleged ‘War Crimes’ alleged to have been committed by the Sri Lankan troops in the closing days of the military operations against the gang of underworld criminals called the LTTE. One more person, namely, Rahul Ghandi, but for whose paternal grandmother and father, the Tamils would not have had to undergo the immense sufferings they underwent at the hands of the LTTE or become IDPs in their thousands, has now added his ‘two cents worth’ to the discordant cacophony of anti-Sri Lanka voices [in the run up to the elections to the State Assembly of Tamil Nadu] stating that not enough is being done for the Tamils of Sri Lanka by the government here and that he would see to it that those Tamils get justice! One common feature about these charlatans who seek to fatten themselves politically by pandering to those such as the Tamil rowdies and hooligans who misbehaved on the streets of Western Capitals in an effort to save those tormentors of the Tamils in particular, and others in general, called the LTTE when Sri Lanka’s armed forces were on the verge of liberating our people from those tormentors; as well as those Tamil rowdies and hooligans who misbehaved on the streets of London to prevent President Rajapaksa from talking to a students’ association at Oxford; lies in the fact that neither they nor Ban Ki Moon nor any of his predecessors raised a whimper of protest or called for any inquiry: (Sinhale Hot News ; 28 December 2010).

Probe India's refusal to help in anti-LTTE operations: Swamy - Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy on Tuesday demanded that the Union government set up a Commission of Inquiry into India's role in the 2008-09 anti-LTTE terrorist operations in Sri Lanka and its national security implications.  The UPA government's refusal to provide heavy artillery and air force support for the Sri Lanka operation against the LTTE had enabled Pakistan to set up a base in the island by providing the requested military assistance, he alleged. Dr. Swamy said that his party would work for the defeat of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam in the coming Assembly elections. He told a press conference here that the political affairs committee of the State unit would meet in Madurai on January 18.  The party would contest more seats on the plank of combating corruption, he added.  He expressed apprehension that the election would see a number of empty promises, including free houses for all. “Whether these promises would be translated into reality, no one knows.”  Dr. Swamy also announced that he would move the court if all the allotments of house sites and flats\houses made under the government discretionary quota were not cancelled by Pongal. “This scam is as big as that of Adarsh Housing Society scandal of Mumbai.” (Hindu : 28 December 2010).

Indian Defence Secy pays homage to slain IPKF soldiers - Defence Secretary Pradeep Kumar, who is on a three-day visit to Colombo to strengthen Indo-Sri Lankan defence cooperation, today paid homage to the Indian soldiers who were killed during the fight with LTTE in the late 1980s. Kumar, who arrived here yesterday, offered floral tributes at the Sri Lankan government built monument near Parliament in honour of around 1200 soldiers of the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF). These soldiers were killed in the fighting in the island nation's north and east. India had sent its troops to maintain law and order in the north and east of Sri Lanka after two countries entered the Indo-Lanka agreement which was aimed at resolving the island nation's ethnic conflict in 1987. Kumar held talks with his counterpart Gotabhaya Rajapaksa yesterday and the two sides agreed to start annual defence dialogue between them. He also met External Affairs Minister G L Pieris. Besides, Kumar is scheduled to call on President Mahinda Rajapksa during his visit to Colombo (Hindustan Times : 28 December 2010). 

Assistant Director of Education in Jaffna, M Sivalingam (52), shot dead in Jaffna

Assist. Director of education of Jaffna shot and killed; Gang has also attempted to molest his daughter -  The Assistant Director of Education Urumpirai, Jaffna . Manikkam Sivalingam (52) was shot inside his own house by an armed group yesterday night(26). The armed gang which had come in motor cycles have forcibly entered the house of Sivalingam and threatened him to hand over the gold jewelry with him. When Sivalingam refused. They had then tried to molest his daughter. In the confusion they had shot Sivalingam and killed him.  Kopay police is investigating (Lanka e-News: 28 December 2010).

Defence Secretary in Colombo to discuss peacetime engagement - To outline the contours of India's defence engagement with Sri Lanka during peacetime, Indian Defence Secretary Pradeep Kumar arrived here on Monday on a three-day visit. He met Sri Lankan External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris, Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, and took part in official-level talks between the two sides. Over the past few years, including in the crucial phases of the war, India had provided know-how and technical support to the Sri Lankan Armed Forces. The Indian defence establishment wants to continue the relationship beyond the civil war years and believes that the Sri Lankan establishment also is deeply interested in a peacetime engagement with the India. Though Mr. Kumar's visit is expected to generally further cooperation between the two neighbours, the real challenge for the two sides will be to identify and agree on the nature of the relationship. Early this month, Indian Navy Chief Nirmal Verma was here to take part in the diamond jubilee celebrations of the Sri Lankan Navy. He used the occasion to engage in wide-ranging discussions with his counterpart and others in the Naval and defence establishment here, sources said (Hindu : 28 December 2010).

Wilpattu circuit bungalows open - The circuit bunglows in the Wilpattu Sanctuary were open to local and foreign visitors from last week.  These bungalows were closed three years ago due to LTTE terrorist activities. Modaragam Aru wooden bungalow, costs Rs 8,000 per night. The duration of occupation is limited for three days only.  The bungalows can be reserved through the Wildlife Head Office Colombo, Chief Park Warden Weerasinghe Dissanayake said.  Meanwhile, the Wildlife authorities, on the instructions of Agrarian Services and Wildlife Affairs Minister S M Chandrasena will take action to preserve and protect places of archaeological, cultural and historical importance in the sanctuary. Meanwhile, selected Civil Security Corps personnel will be deployed to upgrade visitors’ care services. They are expected to deal with poachers and timber racketeers, Weerasinghe said.  Minister Chandrasena at a recent official visit at the national park pledged to have several well-equipped holiday bungalows (Daily News : 28 December 2010).

Sri Lanka refuted a false news report carried by the BBC Sinhala Sandeshaya website on December 24, 2010

Small percentage of evicted Jaffna Muslims resettled - Four hundred and four out of more than 15,000 Muslim families driven away from the Jaffna Muslim Ward by the LTTE in 1990 have been resettled in their original places.  The Northern Provincial Council has allocated Rs. 6 million for the development of the Market in the Muslim Ward and another Rs. 6.5 million for the revamping of the Northern Muslim’s Education Centre, the Uzmaniyya College.  Although there are 7 mosques in the area only four have been repaired in a manner that prayers could be conducted. Three out of four schools in the area have been revamped into a usable condition.  Although 76,000 Muslims lived in the area before the LTTE evicted the Muslims from the Northern Province twenty years ago, it is learnt that only fifty percent of the evicted Muslims prefer to live back in their former hometown as the others have firmly established their businesses in other parts of the country.  A group of representatives of the resettled Muslims met the Jaffna GA, Imelda Sugumar on Friday to discuss their problems (Daily Mirror : 28 December 2010).

Ministry nails BBC canard - The External Affairs Ministry in a press release issued yesterday refuted a false news report carried by the BBC Sinhala Sandeshaya website on December 24, 2010.  The report titled “Sri Lanka war panel ‘pro-LTTE’” said.  “The attention of the Ministry of External Affairs has been drawn to the report under the caption “Sri Lanka War Panel ‘pro-LTTE’ carried by the website’ BBC Sinhala Sandeshaya’ with the date line of 24th December 2010. “Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister has accused some members of the Presidential Panel investigating the war, of being pro-Tamil Tigers, a Sinhala nationalist organization affiliated to the Government claims”.  The report continues, “Chairman of the Patriotic National Movement (PNM), Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera said External Affairs Minister Prof. GL Peiris advised him not to appear before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC)”.  Subsequently, Patriotic National Movement Chairman Movement Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera issued a statement that very same day, confirming that there was no such conversation between himself and External Affairs Minister Prof. GL Peiris, as claimed to have taken place by the news report, said the Ministry release.  “Minister GL Peiris categorically asserts that there was no such conversation between himself and Dr. Amarasekera.  Indeed, Prof. Peiris has not had any conversation with Dr. Amarasekera within the last year,” the release added (Daily News : 28 December 2010).

Hundred Ex LTTE cadres released to mark Christmas

Statement on Sri Lanka Seeking “Justice for Tamils” - by Ira de Silva, London, Canada Mr. Rahul Gandhi Congress Party, New Delhi, India. Dear Sir: It is with deep regret that I read your recent statement seeking “justice” for the Tamils in Sri Lanka and stating that you would take up the matter with “appropriate persons at the Centre” by which I assume you are going to take it up with the Government of India. In this regard, I would like to state some relevant facts for your consideration which I hope you will keep in mind when taking the matter up with the centre. 1. The Tamils of Sri Lanka are citizens of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is a sovereign country. It remains a sovereign country in spite of Indian attempts to try to make it subordinate to India. If you are keen on justice for Tamils, I suggest that you deal with the over sixty million Tamils in Tamil Nadu, India, the homeland of all Tamils and claims of injustice they may have. If the Tamils are Sri Lankan Tamils they do not vote in India but in Sri Lanka. They have representation by their elected members of parliament in Sri Lanka and the same rights that all Sri Lankan citizens have. In fact they are a privileged minority. If you consider them India’s responsibility, what you could take up with the centre is the matter of repatriation of Tamils back to India so that the “centre” can deal with them as they will then be voting for candidates to the Indian parliament. What the Sri Lankan government does for it’s citizens whether they are Tamil or any other community in Sri Lanka is for the Sri Lankan government to decide. The Tamils can not have special status, I am sure you will agree that all citizens of a country must have equal rights. You claim that Sri Lanka is “not doing enough for the Tamils” – can you spell out what you mean by “enough”. Considering that the Tamils keep coming to Sri Lanka and do not go back to settle in India, it would appear to be that they feel they are better off in Sri Lanka rather than in India so “enough” seems not to be done for them in Tamil Nadu, India rather than in Sri Lanka (LankaWeb : 27 December 2010).

External Affairs Ministry denies BBC report - The Ministry of External Affairs has said its attention has been drawn to the report, under the caption, "Sri Lanka War Panel ‘pro-LTTE’" on the BBC Sinhala/Sandeshaya’ website‘ datelined 24th December 2010.  It said that the report stated: "Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister has accused some members of the Presidential Panel investigating the war, of being pro-Tamil Tigers, a Sinhala nationalist organization affiliated to the Government claims". The report continues, "Chairman of the Patriotic National Movement (PNM), Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera said Foreign Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris advised him not to appear before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC)".  The Ministry said "subsequently, Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera, the Chairman of the Patriotic National Movement issued a statement that very same day, confirming that there was no such conversation between himself and External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris, as claimed to have taken place by the news report. A copy of Dr Amarasekara’s Statement along with an unofficial translation into English, is attached hereto (Island ; 27 December 2010).

Revoke ban on LTTE, says VCK - Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK) has called upon the Centre and the US to revoke the ban on the LTTE. A resolution adopted at the party’s Tamils’ sovereignty conference (Tami-zhar Iraiyaanmai Maanadu) at suburban Maraimalainagar here Sunday evening with its chief Thol Thirumavalavan in chair, urged the Centre to take steps to ensure non-governmental organisations are involved in the rehabilitation and resettlement of lakhs of internally displaced Tamils in Sri Lanka. A majority among the 30 resolutions that were passed on the occasion pertained to Sri Lankan Tamils. A resolution urged the United Nations to proclaim Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and others involved in the ethnic cleansing as war criminals and have them tried in an international court. It also demanded that the United Nations recognise the Tamil Eelam. Another resolution condemned the attempts of the Sri Lankan government to “systematically wipe out the Tamils and the language” in the island nation. The dominant dalit party in the state also demanded that the Centre depute Tamil officers to the Indian embassies in countries with large populations of Tamils. Yet another resolution called upon the state government to make Tamil the medium of instruction in schools and rehabilitate all the slum dwellers in Chennai (Deccan Chronicle : 27 December 2010).

Jaffna dairy farmers share agro knowledge with South - A group of 11 farmers, selected from remote agricultural areas in Jaffna were facilitated by the Army to follow a one-month long in residence training course on ‘Dairy Management’, conducted by Seeppukulama Agriculture Training Centre in Anuradhapura.  The opportunity was organized by Security Forces Headquarters, Jaffna, commanded by Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe, following instructions given to him for creation of such opportunities by Army Commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya, Commander of the Army as a means to promote livelihood of Jaffna civilians.  It was the first opportunity of this kind for them away from Jaffna, though many such openings were earlier available to them before LTTE terrorism took root in the peninsula. Jaffna-based Civil Affairs and Public Relations Office after identifying this requirement among dairy farmers took it up with the Animal Husbandry Department with the intention of helping the revival of dairy farming in the peninsula. On their return to Jaffna, after completion of the course, those 11 farmers including one female reached the Jaffna Civil Affairs and Public Relations Office and expressed their gratitude to the Army for making such a rare opportunity available.  They had told the Army that they were able to share their know-how with 27 more Sinhalese farmers who followed the same course at Anuradhapura.  Sri Lanka Army during their stay in Anuradhapura made arrangements for them to receive free food and accommodation in addition to the transport provided by the Security Forces Headquarters Jaffna (Daily News : 27 December 2010).

Rehab youth gets teacher appointment - An ex-LTTE combatant was given a teaching appointment to Wattrappalai Vidyalaya, Mullaitivu after rehabilitation, Commissioner General of Rehabilitation Brigadier Sudantha Ranasinghe said yesterday.  During the last stage of the war, around 12,000 LTTE fighters surrendered to the troops or were captured.  Of them, only 4,649 still undergo rehabilitation while all the others have been reunited with their families.  Brigadier Ranasinghe said that this combatant, a diploma holder of a National Institute of Education, was among the latest batch of 100 LTTE cadres integrated into society on the Christmas day.  Earlier, he said that a number of ex-combatants were recruited as drivers for the Sri Lanka Central Transport Board, and attached to the Kondavil Depot in Jaffna.  Brigadier Ranasinghe said that 703 combatants identified as hardcore fighters had been sent to a camp in Omanthai for investigation purposes.  “We try to transform the lives of these combatants through rehabilitation. We conduct different vocational training programmes for them. Now, there are major investments in the North. Those investors might employ them,” he said (Daily Mirror: 27 December 2010).

More arms and ammunition recovered - The security forces recovered a T81 assault rifle and thirty eight rounds during search operations carried out in Gananimadam and Kandalakadu on Saturday. One antipersonnel mine and a hand grenade were also recovered during a search operation on the same day.  The weapons had been buried. The recovery was made after gathering information from people in the area.  The operations were conducted following information received from public and LTTE cadres in custody and based on information provided by the State Intelligence Services (SIS).  Meanwhile, de-mining groups are continuing de mining operations in Omanthai, Adampan, Mahilankulam and Akkarayankulam.  Security forces are continuing their search operations, especially in the north and east, which were once strongholds of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) (Daily Mirror : 27 December 2010).

‘Jaffna citizens must work to develop country, enhance security’ - People in Jaffna whose literacy rate was higher than the average literacy rate of the country must utilize their knowledge and ability for the development and enhanced security of the country, Prime Minister D.M. Jayaratne said in Jaffna yesterday.  Speaking at the function to mark the National Security Day held coinciding with the commemoration of the 2004 tsunami at the Weerasingham Hall in Jaffna, the Prime Minister emphasized the need to protect the environment and save the country from natural disasters.  Two minutes silence was observed in memory of the people who died in the tsunami. The Prime Minister delivered his speech in both Sinhala and Tamil. He said he was happy to speak in Tamil.  Some journalists who covered disaster related stories were honoured at the function.  The Northern Province Governor, Major General Chandrasiri, Jaffna District Military Commander Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe, Jaffna SSP Gamini Amarakone, Jaffna GA Emelda Sukumar and Jaffna Mayoress Yogeswari Patkunarasa were also honoured.  Next year the Tsunami commemoration and National Security Day will be celebrated in Batticaloa in order to commemorate mainly the Muslim victims of the tsunami.  The Disaster Management Minister Mahinda Amaraveera, Small and Medium Industries Minister Douglas Devananda, Senior Minister A.H.M. Fowzi, UNP MP Vijayakala Maheswaran and EPDP MP Chandrakumar also participated (Daily Mirror : 27 December 2010).

Wikileaks documents show US backed terrorist group classified by State Department - Wikileaks is planning to release files that show Turkey has helped al-Qaida in Iraq, according to London-based daily Al-Hayat. The newspaper also reported that the US helped the PKK, a Kurdish rebel organization. One of the documents, a US military report, reportedly charges Turkey with failing to control its borders, because Iraqi citizens residing in Turkey provided al-Qaida with supplies to build bombs, guns and ammunition. A Wikileaks administrator also told Al-Hayat that the site needs Turks to volunteer to translate documents about Turkey’s role in the war in Iraq and its bid for EU membership. Other documents show that the US has supported the PKK, which has been waging a separatist war against Turkey since 1984 and has been classified by the State Department as a terrorist organization since 1979. The US military documents call the PKK "warriors for freedom and Turkish citizens," and say that the US set free arrested PKK members in Iraq. The documents also point out that US forces in Iraq have given weapons to the PKK and ignored the organization’s operations inside Turkey. On Wednesday, the Obama administration said that it had alerted Congress and begun notifying foreign governments that the WikiLeaks website is preparing to release sensitive US diplomatic files that could damage US relations with friends and allies across the globe (Island : 26 December 2010).

Indian Police hunt down racketeers luring Lankan refugees - Police sources said there are 113 refugee camps in the state and more than 72,000 persons are being confined in them. Most of the refugees, after completing their studies, plan to move abroad. Their favoured destinations are Australia, Canada and Sri Lanka. According to sources, the agents collect Rs 60,000 to 80,000 for preparing fake documents to send them to Canada. A few days ago, four Lankan refugees from various camps in the state were detained at Neelankarai. The refugees were interrogated and sent back to their respective camps. During questioning, they revealed that an agent had promised to take them to Christmas Island near Australia on an illegal ferryboat. They were promised that once they landed on the island, they could easily obtain Australian citizenship. Very recently, Australian government tightened the security on the borders of Christmas Island. Police still don’t know how racketeers manage to travel on sea for more than 12,000 km on illegal boats to reach Christmas Island. Some agents have been successful in transporting refugees to the island. Few other refugees have also been successful in flying to Canada using fake passports and travel documents (Island : 26 December 2010).

Ex LTTE cadres released to mark Xmas - Hundred ex-LTTE combatants, who successfully completed their rehabilitation programmes, were released on Saturday at a ceremony held in Vauniya to mark Christmas.  Sources in the Bureau of the Commissioner General of Rehabilitation said that there were 98 male and two female former LTTE cadres and they had been handed over to their family members.  The government has so far rehabilitated and released over 4,500 former LTTE cadres, including over 300 females.  Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms Minister Chandrasiri Gajadeera said that government’s re-integration of former LTTE combatants into the normal life system had received many accolades from international quarters. The Government had provided opportunity for ex-LTTE combatants to reintegrate into civilian society by providing job opportunities and training in different vocations. "We are helping ex-combatants to return to society and re-integrate with their families as some of them are breadwinners," he added (Daily Mirror : 26 December 2010).

Are Taliban following in footprints of Tamil Tigers? - .... Some Islamist groups in Middle East and Liberation of Tamil Tiger Elam (LTTE), a separatist organisation in Sri Lanka, had used females in suicide missions. But such trend was not seen in Pakistan so far.  Sources said that Taliban leaders Maulana Faqir Mohammad and Maulvi Mohammad Omar had warned time and again that they had women, who were willing to blow themselves up.  “Maulana Faqir was making announcements on FM radio warning of involving female in suicide missions,” said a resident of Bajaur. He said that local authorities had received intelligence reports that militants might carry out attack in the area.  Taliban spokesman Azam Tariq, who claimed responsibility for the attack in Bajaur, though did not verify involvement of female suicide bomber, yet he claimed that they had dozens of trained women, who were ready to lay down their lives.  Injured persons brought to Lady Reading Hospital in Peshawar mostly believed that they had heard screaming of a female following which the blast occurred. They added that they were sure that the attacker was a female clad in the traditional shuttlecock burqa.  An inhabitant of Bajaur told Dawn that any use of female for conducting such blasts in future would complicate the situation for the security agencies as the traditional burqa was all enveloping and in that costume it would be difficult to differentiate between a bomber and ordinary woman (The Dawn : 26 December 2010).

International Tamil Community expresses support to the president’s future vision - Advisor to the International Humanitarian Tamil Alliance Dr.K.K.Navarathne says international tamil community is ready to fully contribute to the massive development drive in Sri Lanka. NO community that respects democratic rights approves LTTE terrorism.  The Tamil diaspora have realized the genuine situation of the tamil community in Sri Lanka. They cannot be fooled by the LTTE false propaganda. IN a media briefing held in Colombo today Dr.Navaratnam said international tamil community has expressed its fullest support to the future vision implemented by president Mahinda Rajapakse (SLBC : 26 December 2010).

The ungrateful son, Rahul Gandhi, shall mind his own business in India and leave Sri Lanka alone

Please visit the website of Rajiv Gandhi assassination (Click here)

LLRC rules out meeting UN panel abroad - Speculations that the advisory panel appointed by the UN Chief will meet the LLRC outside Sri Lanka were scotched by the commission last week, saying it would not meet any UN team outside the shores of the country. The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), The Nation reliably learns, has no legal mandate to meet any foreign or local team outside Sri Lanka and hence has no plans to meet the panel appointed by secretary-general Ban Ki-moon in the event the LLRC is invited to meet the UN panel outside Sri Lanka. Under the powers vested in President Mahinda Rajapaksa according to the constitution to appoint special commissions, the President appointed the LLRC on May 15, 2010 with the aim of focusing on the causes of the northeast conflict and its effect on the people. Though the commission is mandated to move around and within the country to hear observations, comments and submissions from the public, the commission has no legal mandate to move out of the country, LLRC media consultant Lakshman Wickramasinghe told The Nation. He said the LLRC would not travel outside Sri Lanka even if they are invited because the commission had no authorisation to do so. “We are ever willing to meet the team here in the country, provided the government of Sri Lanka facilitates their visit. Once this is done we will hear representations from the UN panel on the basis of the LLRC’s warrant and the usual procedures followed for such hearings,” Wickramasinghe said. He also said the commissioners have not been sitting since December 23 and added the next sitting would be on December 27. According to him the commission will pay a visit to the Boossa detention camp in the South on December 30 where a number of LTTE detainees are kept (The Nation : 26 December 2010).

DO NOT ALLOW UN PANEL TO COME HERE, SAYS DR. GUNADASA AMARASEKERA - The panel of experts appointed by the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon is arriving in the island not to give evidence before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, but to confirm their recommendations, says the National Patriotic Movement.  This was stated by Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera, Chairman of the Movement at a seminar titiled ‘Defeat the coup to turn back the victory’, held at the Sausiripaya auditorium yesterday.  “The panel as well as Ban Ki Moon have said that they are coming, not to give any kind of evidence, but to have discussions. In fact, many are confident that the main intention of these persons is to come into this country after getting some kind of permission.  “Once in this country, they will have discussions with NGOs. INGOs and LTTE sympathisers, and confirm their recommendations.  “As the National Patriotic Movement, we stress that these persons should not be allowed to come into the country,” said Dr. Amarasekera (OnLanka News).

Rhetoric of ‘cheap politicians’ hurts drive to promote national unity Ban’s new moves create more chaos -  As 2010 is coming to an end, it becomes essential for everyone to pause awhile and then muse over the events that had taken place in the past months. For individuals, it is a period to recall some of the mistakes which they had committed and if possible to adopt new resolutions in life. For political parties too, it becomes an important phase to consider changes for better. For the governments, it is even more important to take serious note of what catastrophically has gone wrong in the past and take prudent steps to prevent recurrence of similar mistakes. For the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government led by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, this year has been crucial, with President Rajapaksa himself being re-elected for the second term, after defeating the LTTE - once considered invincible. If the defeat of the LTTE brought a huge sense of jubilation and joy among the masses across the board, a few events that ensued after the defeat have alas brought unnecessary hiccups within the political domain. The one that the government is saddled with is the ongoing battle with the UN, after secretary general Ban Ki-moon declared that he planed to dispatch a team to visit Sri Lanka to look into allegations of war crimes in the final stage of the government’s conflict with LTTE. While fingers are pointed at the External Affairs Minister Prof G L Peiris for the present fiasco, it is believed that if those handling foreign diplomacy had managed this issue in a much more sensible manner, the issue could have been avoided without having to go into a tiff with the UN chief. Serious questions are also raised as to whether the country is maintaining a coherent foreign policy to suit the present political climate (The Nation : 26 December 2010).

Belgium Eases Travel Advisory To Sri Lanka - Belgium becomes the latest country to ease travel advisory to Sri Lanka. Belgium has eased the travel advisory to Sri Lanka over improving security situation. Belgium becomes the latest European country to ease travel advisory to Sri Lanka. Since the start of this year several countries including United States, England, Canada etc have lifted travel advisory to Sri Lanka. Since the end of war against the terror group LTTE and Sri Lankan army, security situation in the country have improved which has prompted several countries to relax travel advisory for Sri Lanka. Since then tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka has surged. Sri Lanka is very happy with the relaxation of travel advisory by Belgium because tourist arrivals from Belgium are on rise. In the first 11 months of 2010, tourist arrivals from Belgium has jumped by 108.2 per cent. Alone is November tourist arrivals increased by 290.5 per cent comparing to previous year. Hoping for a blockbuster 2011 for tourism industry, Sri Lanka feels that the news has come at the right time. This will encourage more Belgium tourists to travel Sri Lanka next year (Easy Destination).

LLRC invites Ranil to explain CFA - The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) will write to Opposition United National Party leader Ranil Wickremesinghe, inviting him to testify before it. The move comes after the commission’s secretary S.B. Atugoda telephoned Mr. Wickremesinghe to inquire whether he could arrange for a date. Mr. Wickremesinghe told the Sunday Times, "I told him that I am answerable to Parliament. If the commission wants me to appear, the Chairman and the members will have to make a request to me." The LLRC is to write to Mr. Wickremesinghe next week, it is learnt. A spokesman for the commission said they were inviting Mr. Wickremesinghe so that he could provide them with the reasoning behind the signing of the Norwegian-brokered ceasefire agreement of 2002 between the Government of which he was the prime Minister and the LTTE. The commission has been tasked to examine the "facts and circumstances which led to the failure of the ceasefire agreement operationalised on February 21, 2002 and the sequence of events that followed thereafter up to May 19, 2009. The latter date is when the security forces militarily defeated the Tiger guerrillas. Besides asking him to testify before the commission on the circumstances leading to the signing of the ceasefire agreement, the commission is expected to clarify a variety of other matters. This is based on the evidence the commission has heard so far, a senior official said yesterday (Sunday Times ; 26 December 2010).

India and Lanka to revive defence ties NEW DELHI: Defence Secretary Pradeep Kumar is visiting Colombo to initiate defence contacts with a post-LTTE Sri Lanka, said government sources. Kumar will be in Sri Lanka until tomorrow (27) to examine the prospects of peacetime cooperation in defence. “It is important that we have a framework for peacetime relationship. So far we have had a wartime relationship,” the sources said. The Defence Secretary’s visit could also see the beginning of the first annual defence dialogue between the two countries. This mechanism was agreed upon by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa during their summit meeting here in June. India will find it difficult to offer more courses to the Sri Lankan military officers because their enrolment in the armed forces institutes here is already at an all-time high. There could be some cooperation in replacing Sri Lanka’s war reserves that were exhausted while countering the LTTE. There could also be some collaboration in enhancing the maritime domain awareness and capability. One indication of the latter was the recent Colombo visit by the Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Nirmal Verma, although it was billed as a purely ceremonial visit. “The Defence Secretary will try to ascertain what Sri Lanka wants to do. It can’t demobilise one lakh personnel without causing social unrest. We have to find out whether it wants to enhance its air defence and artillery capabilities (The Nation : 26 December 2010).

Palali airport brought under Aviation Ministry - The Ministry of Aviation has been entrusted with the task of managing the Palali domestic airport.  The new Minister of Aviation Priyankara Jayaratne said a discussion in this regard was held between top officials of the Defence Ministry and the Ministry of Aviation.  "We will manage the airport while facilitating the interests of the Air Force," he said.  Jayaratne said they will consider the Palali airport on a commercial basis and introduce infrastructure that will be beneficial for passengers. He said they will also talk with other stakeholders such as the Ministry of Tourism to convert this airport into a comprehensive commercial airport.  The Minister said they would rapidly develop the Ratmalana airport to make it an international airport where charter aircraft and mini aircraft could land. "We would consider re-introducing a Customs and duty free facility to cater to international traffic," he said.  Commenting on SriLankan Airlines, Jayaratne said that under the directive of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, they are planning to purchase six new aircraft next year.  "Our aim is to invade the European market," he said.  In addition, this will also strengthen the SriLankan transit market and help make the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) a regional hub."  The BIA would also get additional infrastructure including a new airport hotel, a domestic terminal and a railway station inside the airport.  The Minister also disclosed that SriLankan airlines has already obtained one air taxi and the second one would be brought down early next year.  "We will use this 17-seater aircraft to fly passengers to Jaffna, Trincomalee, Puttalam, Koggala, Victoria, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya and Hambantota and other destinations when their services are required," he said.  The service would be operational from January (Sunday Observer : 26 December 2010).

Ever heard of ‘in-sourcing’, Mr Ki-moon? - Ban Ki-moon, a righteous and justice-fixated man if ever there was one, has appointed a panel to advise him about Sri Lanka. He didn’t brief the panel adequately it seems for we heard the Chairman of the body shooting his mouth as though he had just been appointed Viceroy of Sri Lanka. Very quickly and quite predictably the terrorist-loving sections of the international media told the world that this panel was mandated to investigate alleged war crimes. Ki-moon, good man by the way, perhaps because he was harangued by corruption charges, appointed people who were either incompetent or too politically compromised to maintain impartiality or both. Not his fault, poor man. Ki-moon is a justice-lover. He is our last hope against corporate crime. He is the biggest threat to global thuggery, led of course by the US and Britain and in our corner of the world, India (if we are to take seriously Rahul Gandhi’s recent statement conferring himself the title of chief justice, Sri Lanka). Ki-moon will not let one pin get flicked if he can help it. He would abhor the idea of slavery and would gladly lay down his life defending individual and collective freedoms. He would not suffer racism for a single moment. He is almost a saint. Almost. I use that word because he’s not perfect. There’s something he has missed (The Nation : 26 December 2010).

SLMC for closer ties between govt & TNA - The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) has informed the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) in no uncertain terms that prior to talking to them the TNA should meet the President. The SLMC, during a recent meeting with the TNA, has said that the Congress was willing to continue dialogue with the TNA provided the TNA met the President and clarified its current status quo. The SLMC and the TNA met the previous week to discuss day-to-day issues faced by the Tamil-speaking communities. SLMC chairman Basheer Segudawood told The Nation that the congress had clearly told the TNA that they should meet the President and clarify their position to the President. “We have a feeling that the TNA is willing to work in close relationship with the government. But it is not being conveyed properly,” he said. Jaffna district TNA MP Suresh Premachandran said the party has continuous talks with the SLMC and added the Muslim factor of the North and East is a fundamental factor for the TNA. He said the TNA had already prepared proposals for a political solution and was willing to engage the SLMC, other Tamil parties of North and East and the government over such proposals. The SLMC MP, speaking to The Nation, said that they had requested the TNA to join the government, if it really wanted to see the North and East developed. “We have told them that there’s no point in being in the opposition forever. TNA should join the UPFA coalition and deliver goods to its people,” he said. “As the TNA we would like to see positive development where all Tamils come together as far as a political settlement is concerned.” However, the TNA regrets that there had been no green light for talks from Government so far, Premachandran said adding, “We may engage in talks with government to resolve a political solution and to sort out day to problems of our people. But the ball is (still) in the government’s court”. According to him, TNA expressed its willingness and sent the names of its nominees (for a joint mechanism) to the government, way back as last June. In an historic step towards building consensus among Tamils for a political solution TNA on December 11, consented to form a joint initiative with Tamil Parties’ Forum (The Nation : 26 December 2010).

Unity among Tamil parties vital- Minister Devananda - President Mahinda Rajapaksa is willing to settle grievances of the people in the North and East as early as possible with the overall support of the Tamil Political parties, Minister of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development Douglas Devananda said.  Minister Devananda was speaking at the opening ceremony of the Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation in Jaffna, on Thursday.  The Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation was first established in Jaffna in 1965. However, the institution remained defunct for several years in due to the conflict situation in the region for three decades.  Minister Devananda said that the Forum of Tamil parties had met the Tamil National Alliance and discussed the issues relating to Tamil Political aspirations.   We are hopeful that the Forum of Tamil parties and TNA could jointly work towards reaching a political settlement.  President Mahinda Rajapaksa expects the Tamil political parties to work with unison to reach a political settlement. The President has said that it could be easier for him to arrive at a political solution, once the Tamil parties shed their differences Devananda said. He also added that the problems should be sorted out through negotiations without giving room for violence and extremism.  The Government Agent of Jaffna Mrs. Imelda Sukumar said, by defeating terrorism the Northern and Eastern regions and the country at large could go forward steadily in developing the country (Sunday Observer : 26 December 2010).

Sri Lanka News Online wishes Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, 2011

 

Sri Lankan government releases 100 rehabilitated LTTE cadres - Sri Lankan authorities Saturday handed over another 100 rehabilitated Tamil Tiger rebels to their parents and relatives in celebration of the Christmas. The handing over ceremony took place at the Vavuniya Cultural Center under the patronage of Minister of Human Resources DEW Gunasekara and Minister of Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms Chandrasiri Gajadeera. The authorities presented the released former rebels with certificates according to their completed courses during their rehabilitation. Minister Gajadeera addressing the gathering said most of the detained cadres will be released following their rehabilitation and only around 5,000 are left now from the 11,000 cadres detained at the end of the war in May 2009. The hardcore LTTE cadres who have committed serious crimes will be charged in the Courts, the Minister said. The Colombo Additional Magistrate last week ordered to remand 160 hardcore cadres who were in the custody of Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) following their arrest from camps. At today's ceremony at the Cultural Centre in Vavuniya, the rehabilitated LTTE cadres presented a Christmas Carol service. One of the released cadres today has received the opportunity to pursue his studies at the Jaffna University and another has received a teaching appointment in a government school. The Minister asked the released cadres to use the skill they learnt to be productive citizens and participate in the democratic process (Colombo Page : 25 December 2010).

THE NATIONALIST PAPERS - Hail Rahul, newly crowned King of Justice! - by Malinda Seneviratne - Rahul Gandhi, son of Rajiv Gandhi, grandson of Indira Gandhi and great grandson of Jawaharlal Nehru, cannot be faulted for believing he possesses a gene-right to be Prime Minister of India someday. His ancestors had stature. They also had checkered track records, especially in dealing with India’s neighbours. Not all bad things are passed from one generation to the next via genes. Not all good things either. It is too early to tell with Rahul when it comes to state-craft, leadership and stature in an international context and in any case it is not easy to say what came from gene and what one picked up elsewhere. For now, though, he has crowned himself Champion of Justice. He’s announced, somberly, ‘The Sri Lanka government is not doing enough for the Tamils there (in Sri Lanka, that is),’ and promised that he would ensure they get justice. He is planning to ‘take up the matter with appropriate persons at the Centre’. I didn’t know that the ‘Centre’ in India had some kind of authority conferred on it to sort out problems, real or imagined, in Sri Lanka. I am not sure how this ‘Centre’ would go about delivering on behalf of Rahul. I am wondering if this justice-trip involves anything like what his father did: thrusting ‘solutions’ that did not match ‘problem’, sending an army to Sri Lanka, killing Tamils, raping Tamil women and causing all kinds of destruction and setting in process political events that caused the death of 60,000 people. I am wondering if this justice-trips involves what his grandmother did: funding, arming and training terrorists who would eventually hold a country to ransom for more than two decades and causing unnecessary death to the tune of close to 100,000 lives. The injustice that Rahul wants to rectify (that there are still some Tamils in refugee camps) is a direct consequence of what his ancestors did, by the way (Island ; 25 December 2010).

Minister seeks Cabinet approval to commence operations at the Elephant Pass saltern in Northern Sri Lanka - Sri Lanka's Minister for Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development Douglas Devananda is to submit a Cabinet memorandum seeking approval to commence operations at the Elephant Pass saltern in former rebel controlled area. Work at the Elephant Pass saltern ceased operations in the mid 1980s with the escalation of the war. When it was in operation, the saltern had produced 60,000 to 80,000 tonnes of salt annually, which is 40 per cent of the country's requirement. Elephant Pass, a strategic location in the battles with the LTTE terrorists, lies in the isthmus of Jaffna peninsula. According to Devananda, following Cabinet approval the government would also seek expressions of interest from prospective private investors. Devananda has told the media that while half of the de-mining work in the land where the saltern is located has been completed, the remaining areas are to be de-mined next month (Colombo page : 25 December 2010).

Submission by the National Council of Canadian Tamils - by Asoka Weerasinghe, Canada - The UN Advisory Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka New York, US cc. Hon. Jack Layton, Leader of the New Democratic Party of Canada Paul Dewar, MP for Ottawa, Ontario, Ottawa Centre (NDP) Patrick Brown, MP for Barrie, Ontario (Conservative) Glen Murray, MPP, Toronto Centre, Ontario; Dear UN Advisory Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka: I have read with impassioned interest the National Council of Canadian Tamils (NCCT) submission –Towards Global Justice: Accountability for War Crimes in Sri Lanka, which the four of the above Canadian politicians have endorsed. Although the submission made by the National Council of Canadian Tamils which claims to be a grassroots organization composed of elected representatives from across Canada, I am afraid this submission is suspect as it is an organization that is secretly working to re-establish and resurrect the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) terrorists to fight another day to establish their mythical separate Tamil state, Eelam, thus they have an axe to grind which is far from being honourable. The NCCT are indeed a proxy group of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE aka Tamil Tigers) for the very fact that this association has deliberately adapted in its logo the poisonous lily which is the symbolic flower of the LTTE. This flower has no relevance to the Tamil community at large nor represent the life in their adopted home, Canada. This poisonous lily was introduced by the LTTE in 1991 to remember their fallen comrades and it is the floral emblem of their mythical separate Tamil state, Eelam. Thus it is valid to argue that the mandate of the NCCT is that of the LTTE. Thus the bias remains and is the reason to flay the Sri Lankan Government who wiped out the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam militarily on 18 May, 2009 (LankaWeb : 25 December 2010).

UNSG Panel welcome to present material to LLRC - For the past three weeks the UN Secretary General’s advisory panel on Sri Lanka has been the focus of news reports and political discussion, with diverse interpretations being given to its proposed, intended or possible visit to Sri Lanka. Strong opinions have been expressed whether it should be allowed into the country or not, the role it could play here, including the threat it could pose to the sovereignty of Sri Lanka.  Such discussion of an issue is fair and only to be expected in a democracy, which belies many of the charges being made that Sri Lanka lacks in democracy. However, there are also wholly unrealistic interpretations about the visit of this panel, if it does take place, giving it a much greater importance than it actually deserves. One example is the BBC report of October 22, which said, as only its correspondent in Colombo, Charles Havilland could twist a story, that bringing 160 suspected hard core LTTE cadres before court on that day, was also linked to the expected arrival of this panel. Wholly ignored, was the government’s repeated statements that the LTTE cadres being held in custody will be presented in court to give them an opportunity for a free and fair trial, and that those who had no charges against them would be released, as indeed some have already been released.  What is significant in this discussion about the UNSG’s advisory panel is the importance the entire discussion has given to the role of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), which many have attempted to dismiss as irrelevant to the current situation in Sri Lanka, and keep calling for an international tribunal to investigate alleged war crimes at the end of the humanitarian operation to liberate the people from the LTTE. It is useful, therefore, to place the facts with regard to the UNSG’s Advisory Panel before the public (Daily News : 25 December 2010).

Suspect linked to the LTTE gets bail in Canada - An Ontario University student, taken into custody in Canada for charges in the US was released on bail yesterday.  Suresh Sriskandarajah said he would continue his fight against extradition to the US.  Last week, the Ontario Court of Appeal upheld an order to send the Waterloo, Ont., man to New York to face charges that he worked for the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka between 2004 and 2006.  He is now seeking leave to take his case to the Supreme Court of Canada on the grounds anti-terrorism provisions were overly broad and unconstitutional.  It would take about six months to determine if the top court would hear an appeal.  He faces up to 25 years in prison for allegedly researching and buying communication equipment, and submarine and warship design software for the LTTE.  He is also accused of using students to smuggle goods into northern Sri Lanka and laundering money for the terrorist group in US bank accounts.  Sriskandarajah came to Canada from northern Sri Lanka as a boy and has said he only wanted to help young people there after the devastation of the war.  He was arrested in 2006 after a joint FBI-RCMP investigation, portrayed him as the leader of four suspected terrorist supporters (Daily Mirror ; 25 December 2010).

India likely to gift some military equipment to Sri Lanka - As a goodwill gesture, India is expected to gift some military equipment such as shoulder-fired missiles and radars to Sri Lanka when defence secretary Pradeep Kumar undertakes a two-day visit there from Monday.  The equipment, part of the assistance provided to Sri Lanka to fight Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), is planned to be gifted apparently to demonstrate India's efforts to help build the defence capabilities of the Island nation in the backdrop of Chinese attempts to make inroads there.  India had provided defence hardware including two ground-based radars and a large number of Russian shoulder-fired IGLA ground-to-air missiles to Sri Lanka on a temporary basis, sources said.  India had also lent a coast guard vessel to Sri Lankan Navy during the war but it was not clear whether this would also be gifted.  Some IAF personnel were also deployed there to operate the systems, which were meant only for helping the Sri Lankan armed forces in defending their bases and not for offensive roles, they added.  Kumar, who will hold talks with his counterpart Gotabhaya Rajapakse, is also likely to discuss the future defence requirements of the Sri Lankan armed forces.  The visit comes soon after navy chief admiral Nirmal Verma travelled to Colombo to take part in the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Sri Lankan Navy.  The delegation will include senior officers from the three services and the coast guard and is also likely to discuss ways of increasing service-to-service cooperation between the two countries (DNA : 24 December 2010).

The overbearing Brits - By Namini Wijedasa - IT was during Sri Lanka’s difficult do-or-die battle with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam that former British foreign secretary David Miliband burst into the scene spouting unsolicited strictures on how the government and military should conduct themselves. Tensions between the two nations grew as London exerted pressure on Colombo to stop the offensive citing, among other things, rising civilian casualties. In response, Sri Lanka accused Britain of pandering to pro-LTTE groups desperate to save Tiger leaders by bringing about a ceasefire. Leaked US diplomatic cables have since revealed that some of Miliband’s actions were motivated by a desire to win the support of expatriate Tamils living in key Labor marginal seats. Miliband and his government are no longer in power. Nevertheless, the dramatic slide in UK-Sri Lanka ties continues. And as one senior Sri Lankan diplomat put it: “Whether relations are strained or not, the perception (of strain) is itself an issue.” Now foreign policy analysts warn that the relationship will only worsen if the underlying cause of this widening estrangement is not addressed. Last week saw another low point in the uneasy marriage between the historic allies when British Defense Secretary Liam Fox abruptly “postponed” a private visit to Colombo. Fox, a close friend and supporter of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s government, cited an urgent commitment that arose during his official visit to Abu Dhabi. But he had confirmed months ago that he would deliver the 2010 Lakshman Kadirgamar Memorial Lecture – and when he pulled out a mere day before the event, his personal assistant was already in Colombo for his arrival arrangements. Just days before Fox backed out of this engagement, British newspapers reported that Foreign Secretary William Hague was annoyed about his colleague’s proposed trip. The Guardian even claimed Fox would be defying the Foreign Office in proceeding to Colombo. As it turned out, this assertion was never tested. Quoting Whitehall sources, The Guardian said the main premise for the Foreign Office’s objections was that Britain wanted to maintain pressure on Colombo for an independent war crimes inquiry into the manner in which the military conducted its final battle against the LTTE (The Saudi : 24 December 2010).

New banks in Northern and Eastern provinces - The Central Bank of Sri Lanka says that approval is given to open 136 bank branches in the North and Eastern Provinces after liberating those areas from LTTE terrorist organization. According to the Central Bank official, the Monetary Authority has given permission to open 64 branches in the Eastern and 72 in the Northern Province. The Central Bank says that most of the applications received from local banks while only few applications were received from foreign banks operating in the country to open their branches in the Northern and Eastern Provinces. The HSBC opened its branch in Jaffna while Habib Bank begun their operations in the East. Meanwhile, the Indian Bank is planning to open a branch in Jaffna. SME sector covers the areas such as Fisheries, IT and Hotels and also the agriculture sector provides the biggest opportunity for banking business in those regions, Central Bank official further said (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 24 December 2010).

UN panel broader than dealing with LLRC - The United Nations says that its Expert Panel would deal with other parties in addition to the LLRC. The Panel’s work is broader than simply dealing with the LLRC, Farhan Haq Acting Deputy Spokesperson for the Secretary-Genera said at a Media Briefing in New York yesterday (Ada Derana : 24 December 2010).

US commends resettlement process - The United States yesterday commended the government's speedy process in resettling those internally displaced during the conflict between security forces and the LTTE. "I commend the Government's efforts in resettling most of those who were internally displaced by the fighting," US Ambassador to Sri Lanka Patricia Butenis said at an event where the US Government donated five ambulances to the Army. Praising the Sri Lanka Army and the local and international INGOs for successful de-mining operations in the country, she said "due to the heroic efforts of the Sri Lankan Army and Sri Lankan and international de-mining organizations, large swaths of the North and East are now cleared of mines. However, much work still remains and our continuing support will enable the process to be completed more quickly, she said. "Demining is an essential element of this resettlement process. The mines have meant that people can't return to their homes, that farmers can't plant and harvest crops, that villagers have to worry about explosives in water wells, and that children can mistake a mine for a toy." (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 24 December 2010).

Melbourne News in TV Channel 31

HLD Mahindapala speaks about his presentation to LLRC

Do Gandhi Dynasty Ever Learn? - by Prof. Hudson McLean - Playing the Tamil card is political! Now Rahul Gandhi enters the political arena with a “bomb-shell”. This is a point of no-return. Having seen father Rajiv slain by the Tamil Tiger terrorists largely nurtured by the grand mother Indira Gandhi, Rahul’s statement is “explosive” to say the least. Short and Sweet, my advice to Rahul is-; either let the Sri Lankan government, which represent the citizens, who suffered thirty years of blood shed caused by the Tamil Terrorists, handle the rehabilitation and settlement in its own way, or if Rahul considers the progress is not to Rahul’s satisfaction, he may invite the all the Tamils to Tamil Nadu or any other State within the Republic of India. Question: Is Rahul banking on the current information circulating in the media, that a group of Tamil Tiger Terrorist LTTE is now in India targeting the Prime Minister of India and laying the ground for the coveted position? Is this a “hurry-up” call indicating “I am ready now” message? Need one say more? PS: The National Anthem of Sri Lanka should be only in Sinhala (LankaWeb : 23 December 2010).

RAHUL GANDHI SHALL MIND HIS OWN BUSINESS IN INDIA AND LEAVE SRI LANKA ALONE - by Shripal Nishshanka Fernando - Congress leader in India Rahul Gandhi today has voiced his concern over Sri Lanka government “not doing enough” for the Tamils there and said he would ensure that they would get justice. Rahul should first learn the Indian history properly. He should be able to access the reports of TamilNadu political plots which took place in early nineteen twenties in India to gain independency from India, subsequently the Indian government under British rule imposing country wide ban of any kind secession in India thereafter. Following this ban the independency plot was temporarily exported to neighboring country Sri Lanka as the majority Sri Lankans possess a soft and kind heart and overwhelmingly friendly with everybody. It was Rahul’s paternal grandmother Indira Gandhi who funded, trained, advised and developed Tamil Tiger terrorism in Sri Lanka. There are millions of facts available in open media today to support these truthful allegations and in fact Sri Lanka should claim billions of Sri Lankan rupees as compensation from India for this purposeful heinous and disastrous act by Indira Gandhi. The Tamil Tiger terrorists brutally killed Tamils, Sinhalese, Muslims and others in scores including civilians and politicians in order to achieve a dreamland called Ealam till they were beaten severely and totally eradicated by the brave Sri Lankan forces. Even after Rahul’s father Rajiv Gandhi paid by his life for Indira Gandhi’s LTTE terrorists, it is worth investigating why Rahul is crying for them (LankaWeb : 23 December 2010).

Inter Agency Advisory Committee (IAC) meets LLRC - The Inter Agency Committee (IAC) chaired by Attorney-General Mohan Pieris, established to facilitate the implementation of the Interim Recommendations of the Lessons Learnt & Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) met with the Members of the Commission on Friday, 10th December 2010. This meeting took place consequent to a decision by the Committee at its initial session on the 24th of November. As an outcome of the meeting, the following decisions have been taken: (a) Any material presented to the LLRC during its sessions both in Colombo and outside that may warrant further inquiry or investigation, will be immediately referred by the Commission Secretariat to the Chairman of the IAC; (b) The avenues afforded by the widespread availability of communication technology throughout the country will be utilized, to enable the next of kin to be kept continuously informed of the whereabouts of those detainees who are family members. (c) Every effort will be taken to ensure that the necessary information is available especially to the public in the former conflict affected areas, concerning the rehabilitation and resettlement effort in the North and in the East; (d) The permanent instructions given to the law enforcement authorities concerning the collection of unauthorized weaponry throughout the island will be reiterated (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 23 December 2010).

Colombo steps up fight against defamation - Sri Lanka has stepped up efforts to counter the propaganda war unleashed by the Tamil diaspora about the condition of their brethren on the island and allegations of war crimes.  Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa declared on Tuesday that the battle against LTTE elements abroad would continue. The same day, External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris invited U.S. Ambassador Patricia Butenis to meet him in the context of news reports that several United States Senators and Members of Congress had written to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on the condition of Tamils in Sri Lanka.  Addressing officer-cadets at a passing-out parade at the Sri Lanka Military Academy in Diyatalawa, Mr. Rajapaksa said: “We have already started the war against them in the international sphere and are committed to continuing it.”  Quoting him, The Daily Mirror newspaper said on Wednesday that the defeated terrorist elements had encamped in several countries and their latest strategy was to defame the country by accusing war heroes of crimes during the decisive phase that decimated the LTTE.  Three events in the recent past have once again brought to focus the closing stages of the war against the separatist Tigers that was comprehensively won by Sri Lanka: First, the forced cancellation of the President's address at Oxford; second, the letter of several elected representatives in the United States to Ms. Clinton; and third, the timing of the announcement of United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's three-member panel to advise him on alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka.  Mr. Rajapaksa's address to the Oxford Union was abruptly cancelled on December 1 owing to security fears and “expected protests” by U.K.-based Tamil groups. Mr. Rajapaksa described Oxford as “the home of free speech” and had issued a statement regretting the decision of the Union. On December 18, in letters to Ms. Clinton, 17 Senators and 30 members of the House of Representatives called for the U.S. to seek a U.N. role in investigating last year's decimation of Tamil Tiger insurgency (Hindu : 23 December 2010).

Glaring errors and misconceptions - by John MacKinnon To: François Boo at GlobalSecurity.org 300 N. Washington St. Suite B-100 Alexandria, VA 22314; Your listing Military – Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) at contains glaring errors and misconceptions. Just a few we noted: Tamil people of the island of Ceylon (now called Sri Lanka) constitute a distinct nation External Aid – LTTE’s overt organizations supported Tamil separatism by lobbying foreign governmentsU.S. lawmakers working for terrorists: * Brad Sherman (D-CA-27), Google “Brad Sherman LTTE”; * Rush Holt (D-NJ-12), Google “Rush Holt LTTE”; * Danny Davis (D-IL-7), Google “Danny Davis LTTE”; * David Price (D-NC-4), Google “David Price LTTE”; * Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), chairman of the Judiciary Committee; * Senator Robert Casey (D-PA), chairman of Foreign Relations Subcommittee; * Senator John Kerry (D-MA), chairman of Foreign Relations Committee; Google “obama tamil terrorists”; Several British politicians were identified working for the Terrorists: Labour MP Siobhain McDonagh, Gareth Thomas, Robert Evans, Keith Vaz, Virendra Sharma, Simon Hughes, Joan Ryan, Kim Howell, Britain’s envoy in Sri Lanka Dominic Chilcott and former London Mayor Ken Livingstone. Their support is critical for these terrorists who use UK as a solid base for raising funds and terrorizing democratic states. LTTE “Tamil Tigers” and its UK-wide network: UK banning legislation is an appalling failure VIGIL Intelligence Report Overview (London Unit) (LankaWeb : 23 December 2010).

Hague policy has no popular support in Britain - As one who considers himself a patriotic ‘Brit’ and a committed ‘Lankaphile’ of many years standing, I feel compelled to comment on the disgraceful behaviour of my country’s Government in respect of this free and beautiful land. Your editorial comment, as well as the tone of numerous published articles, leaves no doubt as to your own stance on the matter - and for my part I should like to assure you that the appalling treatment afforded President Rajapaksa and the ‘reigning in’ of Liam Fox has no popular support whatsoever from the indigenous population of the UK. On the contrary, the so-called Tamil Diaspora are viewed as yet another group of immigrant agitants in receipt of discriminately favourable treatment in respect of housing and benefits - and the British people are heartily sick of them. Counter protests are increasingly common but this receives little prominence and the demonstrators are dismissed as racists. Can you begin to imagine a parade of Sri Lankan military being abused and spat upon by alien malcontents in their own country? Because that is exactly what was recently allowed to happened to troops parading through the southern English town of Luton! The people wanted water-cannons and deportations (I would have appreciated a few cracked skulls!); the Government’s action was barely perceptible (Island : 23 December 2010).

Mr. Rahul Gandhi: Isn’t it enough what your grandmother did, nurturing the LTTE? - by Henry Jayaweera - The Editor. So the third generation of the great Gandhi generation has made his proclamation. There’s none so dumb as those who will not learn. This is for Mr. Rahul Gandhi: Isn’t it enough what your grandmother did, nurturing the LTTE, and then your father, who paid the ultimate price for trusting that murderous group? We Sri Lankans have had enough of the Gandhian morality, and would like to be left alone to solve our internal problems. Obviously, yours is a political stunt to get the support of the Tamil people in India, but even they will now have seen through your slick moves (to us they seem pretty sick!). If you want to help the Tamil people in Sri Lanka, support the government in power that rescued them from the fascism of the LTTE, and gave them a chance to merge into Sri Lankan society in peace and honor. And stop stirring up the witches’ cauldron for it will only delay the peaceful solution of a problem which two former generations of your family share responsibility for (LankaWeb : 23 December 2010).

Necklace makes Tamil woman suspect in Canada - Canadian authorities say that a Sri Lankan Tamil woman who entered the country aboard the smuggling ship MV Sun Sea in August is linked to the Tamil Tigers. The human smuggling ship had brought 492 Sri Lankan Tamils to Vancouver from Thailand after allegedly charging up to $50,000 from each of them. Since the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) fears that the Tamil Tigers might sneak into the country in the guise of asylum seekers, it has detained the passengers for screening them for their terror links. So far, 300 of them have been released after screening. But now a Tamil woman, who is in custody along with her children, has been identified as a security risk because of her alleged links to the Tamil Tigers. The Canada Border Services Agency has told the immigration and refugee board - which decides these cases - that the woman is married to a Tamil Tiger and that she worked in a Sri Lankan library funded by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) which was defeated by the Sri Lankan forces last year. The border agency officials say their suspicion about this woman increased as she is wearing a distinct necklace, called a 'Tiger thali', which only LTTE members give to their brides on their wedding day. 'She is in possession of a Tamil thali that is believed to be given only to LTTE members on their wedding day. Information appears to suggest that the specific thali that she has is only given to the LTTE members, and is not a generic thali that solemnizes all marriages,'' Jennifer Friberg, of the Canada Border Services Agency, has reportedly told the refugee board (Sify News : 22 December 2010).

Sri Lanka castigates United States Ambassador for ‘pre-judgmental attitude’ of US lawmakers

North projects on track, no dispute over standard of ‘housing units’ - Government says those genuinely interested in helping Tamil speaking people should invest in Sri Lanka without backing the LTTE rump in its destabilization efforts… S. B. Divaratne, a senior official involved in re-building the war devastated Northern Province says the country can be justly proud of progress in reconstruction, rehabilitation and reconstruction of former battle-fields. Citing newest data available from State agencies and INGOs/NGOs, Divaratne asserts that their efforts are on track, though some may not want to accept or agree.  In an interview with The Island, Divaratne, Secretary to the Presidential Task Force for Resettlement Development and Security (Northern Province), said that house building projects launched by the governments of Sri Lanka and India, and INGOs, including the EU and UN would help the country to tackle a key problem in the post-war era.  Divaratne dismissed assertion that some IDPs had questioned the standards of housing units offered by the government and other agencies following India’s offer to build 50,000 houses for the affected families. He said that there couldn’t be any basis for IDPs to refuse what they had been offered by the government or other donors.  Divaratne was responding to a statement issued by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which dealt with a range of issues, including a dispute over the standard of the newly built housing units in the North (Island : 22 December 2010).

LLRC to adhere to warrant - The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission(LLRC)over the reports of UN Secretary General's Panel visit to Sri Lanka says the Commission will hear such representations on the basis of its warrant and the usual procedures followed for such hearings. In a media communique, the Commission says that there have been some inquiries from the national media regarding a visit to Sri Lanka by the UN SG's Panel. Any decision to facilitate the UN SG's Panel to visit Sri Lanka lies entirely with the Government of Sri Lanka. If a decision is made to permit such a visit the LLRC will hear such representations on the basis of its warrant and the usual procedures followed for such hearings, the statement said. www.news.lk (Daily News : 23 December 2010).

Sri Lanka wins place on the UNCRC - Dr. Mrs. Hiranthi Wijemanne, one of the few people who fearlessly challenged the LTTE recruitment drive targeting children, has received broad and substantial support from the Members of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child. External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris said that it would be pertinent to note, in this regard, that the election had been keenly contested with 23 candidates coming forward, for only nine available posts. Prof Peiris said: "The CRC is a key instrument established by the international community to work collaboratively to ensure the protection, welfare and development of children, thereby ensuring a better and brighter future for all humanity.   Accordingly, in the election process, inevitable evaluations are made both of the contribution in this regard by the candidate, as well as by the nominating country.  In this context, Sri Lanka had to face vicious and motivated efforts of denigration from sinister quarters. However, in the face of manifest and undeniable progress by Sri Lanka over the entire spectrum of human development, and especially, in the sphere of child protection and welfare, which includes the successful rehabilitation and reintegration of all former child soldiers during a brief time span, these efforts did not succeed. The outcome of the election, therefore, is a clear recognition by the international community of the achievements and sincerity of purpose of President Rajapaksa and his Administration, and reflects Sri Lanka’s stature in the world community (Island ; 22 December 2010).

Sri Lanka High Courts orders arrest of five TRO officials

Lanka requests US: Don’t be pushed by false propaganda - External Affairs Minister Prof G L Peris yesterday expressed hope that the US embassy in Colombo and the US Department would convey to the Senators and Congressmen the need to avoid being pushed by false propaganda towards the adoption of a pre-judgemental attitude towards the LLRC.  The Minister made these remarks when he met the US envoy in Sri Lanka Patricia Butenis at the Foreign Ministry yesterday.  Minister Peiris met Butenis in the context of news reports that several United States Senators and members of Congress had addressed on December 10, a letter concerning Sri Lanka to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  The Minister pointed out to the US Ambassador that the text of the letter as carried by the media, appears among other matters to assert that the effort of the Government of Sri Lanka through the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) lacks mandate and broad scope.  The Minister noted that on the contrary, the Terms of Reference establishing the Commission expressly call for it to make recommendations to prevent recurrence of the inflicted strife of the past, while promoting further national unity and reconciliation among all communities. Accordingly, the Commission has the necessary amplitude for its effective functioning.  In fact the Minister added, the robust manner in which the LLRC is setting about its task is seen from its already having held 35 public sessions in Colombo. Additionally, it has met in the East in Trincomalee, in Mutur and in Kuchchaveli. In the North sessions have been held in Vavuniya, in Kilinochchi, in Mullativu and in Jaffna. While during the sessions in Colombo, over 85 persons have made representations, the public in the North and in the East were especially facilitated in presenting submissions, through the prior circulation of forms to enable the advance gathering of information (Daily News : 22 December 2010).

Tamil boat refugees settle into life in Canada - The Harper government calls the shadowy individuals who helped smuggle 492 Tamil migrants to Canada aboard a cargo ship this summer "criminals" and "ruthless profiteers." But one of the migrants who took that perilous three-month voyage with her two children considers them "saviours." "I'm not scared for my life or my (children's) lives," the mother said through a translator, in a rare interview. "I've got peace of mind." The mother was released from detention a month ago but still faces an uncertain future in Canada. She agreed to talk to Postmedia News on the condition that her name and other identifying details not be revealed because of her pending refugee claim and because of safety concerns for her family in war-ravaged Sri Lanka. Her comments come at the end of a year that saw Tory cabinet ministers vow to crack down on human smugglers and "queue jumpers" after the MV Sun Sea lurched to shore in August. But refugee advocates say the government's proposed legislation could end up hurting "genuine" asylum-seekers and tarnish Canada's reputation as a country that welcomes immigrants. "You can't brush everyone as a terrorist or a snakehead," said Sam Nalliah, a Tamil-Canadian in Burnaby, B.C., who with his wife, Angela, have been helping many of the Sun Sea migrants settle into Canada (The Vancouver Sun : 22 December 2010).

GL meets Butenis over ‘war crimes’ allegations. - Condemns C’bo mission for misleading Washington - External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris on Tuesday (Dec. 21) raised concerns with US Ambassador Patricia Butenis about the references to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, former President Chandrika Kumaratunga, the President’s brothers and former Army Commander General Sarath Fonseka in the leaked confidential US diplomatic cables. Both Butenis and her predecessor Robert Blake had levelled a series of allegations against Sri Lanka’s political and military leaders, with Butenis going to the extent of accusing President Rajapaksa, his brothers, Gotabhaya and Basil and General Fonseka of ‘war crimes.’ "The purported cables do contain glaring instances of allegations totally unwarranted by the ground reality, being conveyed to Washington," a statement issued by the External Affairs Ministry quoted Prof. Peiris as telling Butenis at a meeting held at the Foreign Ministry. As examples, the Minister cited the claims of children being sold into slavery, with the boys to work in camps and the girls to prostitution rings. The Minister emphasized that the conveying of such mendacious stories, clearly fabricated to denigrate Sri Lanka, are totally negative to the objective of diplomacy, which is building bridges and promoting understanding (Island : 21 December 2010).

Reduce Sri Lanka, recycle myths and reap the whirlwind - by Ranjith Soysa - Robert Blake, an interfering ugly American wants Sri Lanka to reduce the emergency regulations and the High security zones while being a diplomat of the USA which has almost destroyed the Iraq nation state in searching for WMDs .The USA ‘s responses to 9/11 killings are well documented including the atrocities committed to the suspects held in Guantanamo and in the Iraqi prisons. His paternal advise comes in the wake of activities of the Tamil Eelamists in the USA who are said to be protected by the US democratic rights- so says US Ambassador in Sri Lanka ,Ms Butenis-But, the USA ‘s democratic and others not so democratic activities are executed at times simultaneously with right hand pretending and proclaiming that it does not know what the left hand is doing! The CIA ‘s role is different to the Congress agenda they say. For instance the UN Declaration on Friendly Relations states ..” Nothing in the foregoing paragraph shall be construed as authorizing and or encouraging any action which would dismember or impair, totally or in part, the territorial integrity of political unit of sovereign and independent states conducting themselves in compliance with the principle of equal rights and self-determination of people as described above…” Every state shall refrain from any action aimed at the partial or total disruption of the national unity and the territorial integrity of any other state or country” ( pls note that the self determination applies only to the countries under colonial rule). (LankaWeb : 21 December 2010).

Rs10.3 Million donated to War Heroes

Withe sponsorship payments of November 2010, total donated as exceeded Rs.10 millions (Rs.10.3) (Read details in PAHANA Newspaper in Australia)

Sponsor a child of a war hero deceased or disabled while in action to protect Sri Lanka

http://www.virudarudiriya.com

 

Sri Lanka condemns Colombo's US mission for misleading Washington

Sri Lanka High Courts orders arrest of TRO officials - Colombo High Court recently issued open warrants against five accused indicted for funding world’s most ruthless terror outfit- the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) with funds by the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) received for humanitarian activities concerning Tamil civilians affected by war. The accused were indicted under the Convention on the Suppression of Terrorist Financing Act, and The Prevention of Money Laundering Act. High Court Judge Deepali Wijesundara ordered the Director of Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of Police to expeditiously arrest and to produce the five accused before court. Altogether eight accused are indicted on three counts including conspiracy, aiding and abetting the appropriation of a sum of Rs. 35 mn of TRO funds and giving it to the LTTE member- Chrisnakutti Shivakumaran. The offences have been committed from October 10, 2005 to March 24, 2006 in Colombo and Vavuniya. Interpol has issued an arrest warrant on the TRO chief Kanakalingam Premaraj (alias Reggie) for providing funds for the LTTE to procure weapons. The United States Government has designated TRO as a front organization for the banned organisation LTTE in November 2007 and froze all its assets while Sri Lanka froze all assets belonging to TRO in 2006. When the case was called up earlier the court issued warrants against the third accused-Kanthilingum Premraj after the prosecution informed the court that the accused had not been at the address given to court, assuming that he had left the country. Court issued summons to Murugesu Shanmugaraja, Kathirakesu Ganeshalingam, Eliyathambhi Nadarajah, Chrisnakitti Shivakumaran, Balasubramaniyam Sri Skandharajah and Cornelius Prabhakaran appear before court on November 3 (Asian Tribune : 21 December 2010).

Sri Lanka castigates United States Ambassador for ‘pre-judgmental attitude’ of US lawmakers - Sri Lanka’s Foreign Ministry today strongly expressing the country’s position to United States Ambassador Patricia Butenis and iterated that US lawmakers who called for a rights probe into Sri Lanka was ‘pre judgmental’ and was ‘pushed by false propaganda’ carried out by pro-LTTE quarters.  Issuing a statement External Affairs Ministry said today that the US Embassy in Colombo and the State Department in Washington should convey Sri Lanka’s position to the Senators and Congressmen of United States.  During his meeting with Ambassador Butenis today, Minister of External Affairs, Pro. G L Peiris also referred to the letter sent by a number of US Senators with regards to the Lessons Learnt & Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) claiming that it lacked mandate and broad scope.  “The Minister noted that on the contrary, the Terms of Reference establishing the Commission expressly call for it to make recommendations to prevent recurrence of the inflicted strife of the past, while promoting further national unity and reconciliation among all communities. Accordingly, the Commission has the necessary amplitude for its effective functioning,” its statement said (Asian Tribune ; 21 December 2010).

Battle against LTTE elements abroad will continue – President - Defeated terrorist elements have encamped in several foreign nations and their latest weapon is to defame our country and throw allegations at our war heroes accusing them of war crimes, stated President Mahinda Rajapaksa. 'We have already commenced the battle against them in the international sphere and are committed to continue it'. President Rajapaksa said so at the ceremonial passing out parade of Cadet officers at the Sri Lanka Military Academy (SLMA) in Diyatalawa today (21 Dec). We are now at a significant phase in the humanitarian operation. Our endeavour is to win hearts and minds after freeing the people and lands from terrorism. The humanitarian operation includes de-mining, resettlement and providing basic requirements among other tasks. All development programmes carried out in the North and East are part of the humanitarian operation, the President stated. He stressed that this humanitarian operation will not stop until the painful memories of terrorism and all thoughts of separatism are removed from people's hearts. 'You pass out today to contribute to this noble humanitarian operation', the President told the Cadet officers. A person does not excel through talent and knowledge alone. Instead, the most important element is the love for one's country, he pointed out. 'The government not only lined up the security forces for the humanitarian operation but also organized the people against terrorism. The government received tremendous support from the people in eliminating terrorism', he said. 'The highest tribute to these people is to ensure that terrorism does not raise its ugly head', he emphasized (Sri Lanka Govt Official Website : 21 December 2010).

G.L summons Butenis - External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris summoned US Ambassador Patricia Butenis today and raised concerns over the Wikileaks cables on Sri Lanka and also discussed the letter sent by members of Congress to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Prof. Peiris reiterated the stated position of his Ministry that Sri Lanka does not condone the act of putting in the public domain in an illegal manner, privileged and confidential information. He said that he is constrained however to point out that the purported cables do contain glaring instances of allegations totally unwarranted by the ground reality, being conveyed to Washington. As examples, the Minister cited the claims of children being sold into slavery, with the boys to work in camps and the girls to prostitution rings. The Minister emphasized that the conveying of such mendacious stories clearly fabricated to denigrate Sri Lanka, are totally negative to the objective of diplomacy, which is building bridges and promoting understanding. The Minister expressed the view that at least where future instances may be concerned, greater circumspection would be appropriate. The Minister also pointed out to the US Ambassador that the text of the letter by Congress sent to the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, appears among other matters to assert that the effort of the Government of Sri Lanka through the Lessons Learnt & Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) lacks mandate and broad scope. The Minister noted that on the contrary, the Terms of Reference establishing the Commission expressly call for it to make recommendations to prevent recurrence of the inflicted strife of the past, while promoting further national unity and reconciliation among all communities. Accordingly, the Commission has the necessary amplitude for its effective functioning. The Minister went on to express the hope that the US Embassy in Colombo and the State Department in Washington would convey to the Senators and Congressmen, the need to avoid being pushed by false propaganda towards the adoption of a pre-judgemental attitude (NewsNow: 21 December 2010).

Mumbai gangster probed for LTTE links

D aide probed for LTTE links in India - Mumbai’s Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) is questioning a key member of Dawood Ibrahim gang for alleged links with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to supply arms for terror activities in India. ATS has sought a fresh remand for D-Company top lieutenant Mirza Mohiddin Baig, currently under Crime Branch’s custody, to question him in connection with terror links in India. Additional Director General of Police, Rakesh Maria, confirmed to MiD DAY that Baig is being interrogated for terror links in India. He refused to give further details. Baig, who was on the Interpol’s wanted list, was arrested in Colombo on May 8, 2009, after a long stint in Sri Lanka, and deported to India. The police had recovered three pistols and 18 live rounds from him. Since then, the gangster had been in judicial custody until last week when the Indian Crime Branch took over, after his name cropped up again after intelligence reports indicate that D-Company is procuring arms and ammunition from the remaining members of LTTE for operations in India. Investigations by ATS and the Crime Branch provide evidence that D-gang members have allied with the Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba for spreading terror in the country. Reports indicate that under the ‘Karachi Project’, terrorist organizations have been using Dawood’s network in India for logistic support. A few hundred of the LTTE core cadre have gone underground with huge quantities of arms and deadly explosive RDX after Prabhakaran was killed last year (Daily News ; 21 December 2010).

Mumbai gangster probed for LTTE links - Mumbai's Anti Terror Squad is questioning a Dawood Ibrahim gang member who is on the Interpol's wanted list for allegedly having links with the banned LTTE over the supply of arms for terror activities in India, the Mid Day news agency reported yesterday. ATS has sought a fresh remand order for D-Company top lieutenant Mirza Mohiddin Baig, who is now under detention by the Crime Branch, to question him in connection with terror links in the country. Additional Police Director General, Rakesh Maria, has confirmed to Mid Day that Baig is being interrogated for terror links in India. He refused to give further details. Baig was arrested in Colombo on May 8 last year, after a long stint in Sri Lanka, and deported to India. The police had recovered three pistols and 18 live rounds of ammunition from him. Since his arrest the gangster had been in judicial custody until last week when the Crime Branch took over after his name cropped up again in intelligence reports indicating that D-Company was procuring arms and ammunition from the remaining members of the LTTE for operations in India.Investigations by ATS and the Crime Branch provide evidence that D-gang members are allied to the Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba for spreading terror in the country. Reports indicate that under the 'Karachi Project', terrorist organizations have been using Dawood's network in India for logistic support. A few hundreds of the LTTE hardcore are said to have gone underground with huge quantities of arms and the deadly explosive RDX after the Sri Lankan army stormed their bastion killing their leader Velupillai Prabhakaran last year. Baig was arrested soon after the operations. Reports indicate that the LTTE has been selling sophisticated arms and explosives to the Maoist factions across the country. Baig's questioning assumes significance in light of reports that LTTE was planning to target the Inida’s Prime Minister and Home Minister. Police sources said that Baig would also be questioned for the alleged involvement of D-Company, directly or indirectly, in the Varanasi bomb blast earlier this month.  Baig climbed up the mafia ranks after he was running illegal ISD facilities. Dawood's second-in-command, Chhota Shakeel, soon made him the nodal person in Mumbai. The gangster from Kortula in Karim Nagar district in Andhra Pradesh was assigned the task to deliver arms to D-Company shooters in Mumbai, before he was arrested by the Crime Branch's Criminal Intelligence Unit. The gangster had then confessed of having links with gun suppliers in Bangkok, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, a former Crime Branch officer said. Baig soon jumped bail and escaped to Dubai and later surfaced in Colombo. Rashid Malbari, another ace shooter in Dawood's gang, was carrying out underworld operations from Sri Lanka (Daily Mirror : 21 December 2010).

Lankans in Italy condemn Britain over allowing LTTE rump have its way

Demolishing LTTE tombstones - In her column in The Island of 4th December, Shanie expresses her concern over the demolition of LTTE cemeteries. She thinks that the demolishing of the cemeteries set up by the LTTE would be a sensitive issue because it would be likely to hurt the feelings of the families of those cadres killed in the battle. Therefore she argues that it would not be in keeping with the spirit of reconciliation the government is trying to promote in the country. The LTTE was a terrorist organization which had no concern, let alone respect for human life. The Tigers indiscriminately without a grain of mercy for anybody and it would only be redundant to catalog their crimes against innocent civilians, both Tamil and non-Tamil. Moreover, it snatched thousands of Tamil children from their families to be used in its mindless campaign of terror. The tombstones of the slain LTTE cadres were not erected by their family members. They had been built under the instructions of the LTTE leader who never cared about people or feelings when he sent his men to snatch those children from their homes. He did not build them for the love of them or any concern for the feelings of their family members. It was helpful to Prabhakaran to project them as martyrs so that he could boost the morale of the fighting cadres and snare more civilians into his net. These headstones, therefore, only serve as the embodiment of the insanity of a man who led people to kill and get killed (Island ; 20 December 2010).

‘Moon Panel’ to visit SL in keeping with its mandate - Amidst controversy over an ill-advised decision to invite UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s three-member ‘war crimes’ panel, it has now emerged that the panel wants to visit Colombo in keeping with its own mandate, contrary to claims that it is coming here following an understanding reached between President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the UNSG reached last September in New York.  Authoritative sources told The Island that the two leaders, on the sidelines of the 65 UNGA, had agreed that the panel could meet the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) on the basis of an invitation extended by the LLRC to any local or foreign organisation interested in making representations to the LLRC.  Due to failure on the part of the government to convert that understanding into a workable arrangement for the panel to meet the LLRC, the UN had exploited the situation to come here on its own terms.  Responding to a query by The Island, the official said that Sri Lanka had had the strength and the capacity to thwart repeated attempts by the pro-LTTE lobby to force UN Security Council to halt the offensive against the LTTE. He recalled how the armed forces had maintained the momentum throughout January last year in spite of heavy UN pressure bolstered by intervention by the US, the UK and France.  Sources said that the government would have to move swiftly to ensure that the UN panel would visit solely on the basis of President Rajapaksa’s understanding with the UNSG or refuse to cooperate with the inquiry. They said that it would be suicidal for the government to let the UN conduct an inquiry in Colombo (Island ; 20 December 2010).

Female migrant suspected of Tamil Tiger links, refugee board told - A woman who sailed to Canada on the MV Sun Sea worked for the Tamil Tigers and had a necklace that is given only to members of the terrorist group on their wedding day, a government representative alleges. The woman, who can't be identified because of a publication ban, had a detention review on Monday before the Immigration and Refugee Board. She and her children have been in custody since the MV Sun Sea arrived in August carrying 492 Tamils. Jennifer Friberg, a hearing officer for the Canada Border Services Agency, told the refugee board the woman is a security risk and must be detained. Most of the other migrants who have been kept in custody were held on the grounds that their identity had yet to be established. Ms. Friberg said the woman admitted to working at a Sri Lankan library that CBSA believes to have been funded by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, an organization banned in Canada. A distinct piece of jewellery the woman was carrying also raised suspicions. “She’s in possession of a Tamil thali that is believed to be given only to LTTE members on their wedding day,” Ms. Friberg said, noting that a thali is a necklace with a pendant. “Information appears to suggest that the specific thali that she has is only given to the LTTE members, and is not a generic thali that solemnizes all marriages.” The woman is wed to a man border officials have also accused of being a Tamil Tigers. His name and identifying details may not be published. The woman, who is being detained at a Burnaby facility, did not appear at the review in person. She listened in via teleconference and spoke only when addressed by an interpreter. Ms. Friberg said when border officials questioned the woman, she gave vague answers about her husband’s link to the terrorist group. The Tamil Tigers were defeated last year after a decades-long Sri Lankan civil war (The Globe and Mail : 20 December 2010).

Inadequacy in U.S. Miiission in Colombo - by Ira de Silva London, Canada - Ms. P. Butenis U.S. Ambassador Colombo, Sri Lanka. I am forwarding an article that spells out the inadequacy and flawed information on which reports are based and forwarded to the State Department from the mission in Colombo which results in the biased, inaccurate statements which are made about Sri Lanka by the State Department. While your cables sent to Washington are now public, it seems that your attitude, assessments and reporting are based on prejudice, misinformation and supportive of pro-LTTE claims and demands – the LTTE using you to get what they failed to get militarily.  Please review the following report from an ex-employee of the U.S. mission in Colombo which highlights the ground realities missed and misrepresented by the U.S. mission in Colombo. Because of your “know-it-all” attitude and history of trying to act as a “viceroy” in third world countries, I doubt that you are open to rational thought but am sending it you anyway on the off-chance that someone in the State Department will read it. Please note that it refers to R. Blake’s and P. Crowley’s statements as follows:  “The proclamations of assistant secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs Bureau in Washington Robert Blake and State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley do not give me the impression that they have fully comprehended the ground situation and trends in the war ravaged north, why the military continues to be there, what the military has undertaken among the civilians and the psychological factor in the post war northern region’s innocent Tamils are undergoing”. Please note Mrs. Clinton’s statement of what the military can achieve in a war ravaged situation and apply it to Sri Lanka without prejudice and bias. Also, I would emphasise the statement by Mrs. H. Clinton “One of the greatest threats we face is from people who believe they are absolutely, certainly right about everything” (LankaWeb : 20 December 2010).

Lankans in Italy condemn Britain over allowing LTTE rump have its way - The Sri Lankan Associations in Rome, the clergy, Buddhist Priests and other Associations from Milan to Catania held a massive demonstration and protest in front of the British Embassy in Rome, on December 16, to condemn the British government over its permitting a banned terrorist organization, the LTTE, to hold demonstration at the Heathrow Air port and in front of the Dorchester Hotel, where Sri Lanka’s President Mahinda Rajapaksa was staying and thereby violating its own Anti-terrorist Laws. Despite the freezing temperature, the Sri Lankans gathered in their numbers to show their solidarity with President Rajapaksa who had by his unflinching resolve and commitment wiped out the most ruthless terrorist organization in the world and freed the Sri Lankan nation from the threat of terrorism. Despite it being a working day, the Sri Lankans and Italians members of the Anti-terrorist Organization, with Buddhist priests representing every single Temple in Italy, participated in the demonstration. They requested the British Government to adopt the same standards as the Italian government, which is working closely with the Sri Lankan Mission in Rome to eradicate LTTE terrorist cells from Italy. The President of the Sri Lankan Association handed over an appeal to the British Ambassador in Rome Mr. Chaplin (Island ; 20 December 2010).

Of that ‘Great Britain’ - by Rontjen Perera - "Presumption of innocence is an essential right that the accused enjoys in criminal trials in all countries respecting human rights. It states that the accused is presumed to be innocent until it has been declared guilty by a court. The burden of proof is thus on the prosecution, which has to convince the court of the guilt of the accused." "Conversely, in many authoritarian regimes, the prosecution case is, in practice, believed by default unless the accused can prove he is innocent — presumption of guilt." Self declared "Great Britain" has opted to apply the law as practiced in Authoritarian States, charged Sri Lanka of violating Human Rights based on mere accusations and condemned Sri Lanka, it appears, as a paraya State and prevented a Minister of State from even visiting our country. This is the same country, lest we forget, which provided dissident terrorists like Balasingham of the LTTE to make London his home and HQRS to launch relentless attacks in Sri lanka killing and maiming hundreds of innocent people spanning a period of three decades. It still provides a home and complete freedom of movement to Adele Balasingham who taught Tamil girls of a very tender age the art of killing and how to swallow Cyanide pills. It is the same country where Balasingham and his partners in crime popped open bottles of Champagne in celebration of the brutal assassination of Lakshman Kadiragamar. It is the same country which at that time ignored the Human Rights of the people of Sri Lanka. Mr.Liam Fox is a friend of Sri Lanka. Yet I feel a Brit should not be called upon to deliver the Lakshman Kadirgamar Memorial Lecture 2010. His inability to come is a blessing in disguise (Island ; 20 December 2010).

Lanka urges EU not to be a platform for LTTE rump and the allies

No stoppage of North, East housing No truth in Sunday newspaper report, says Ministry: The Economic Development Ministry has denied as incorrect and misleading the lead story in the Sunday Times headlined ‘Basil stops donor funded new buildings in North and East’. Issuing a release Economic Development Ministry Director General (Development and Communication) Prof Sunanda Madumma Bandara states:  “This statement is totally incorrect and misleading and will give an entirely different message to international lending institutions such as the World Bank, ADB and JICA etc and conflict affected people in the North and East.  “The circular issued by the Ministry has not given any reference to Houses as there is no intension to stop or curtail any on-going or new housing projects in North and East.  “Therefore this does not apply to on-going 50,000 housing project by the Government of Sri Lanka utilizing a loan provided by the World Bank and proposed housing project donated by the Government of India which also consists of construction of 5,000 new houses and repair of 45,000 houses. “Most of the rehabilitation and reconstruction projects in North and East are being implemented utilizing the loan funds made available to the Government by lending organizations such as World Bank, ADB and JICA and these are not donations and required to pay back with interest (Daily News : 20 December 2010).

Lanka urges EU not to be a platform for LTTE rump and the allies - Sri Lankan Ambassador Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU Ravinath Ariyasinghe says an influential section of the European Parliament is collaborating with those seeking to discredit the country. Ambassador Ariyasinghe told The Island on Sunday (Dec. 19) that the LTTE rump and its overseas supporters were working overtime to undermine the government’s reconciliation efforts in the post-war era.  Ambassador Ariyasinghe said that he had strongly protested against the denial of Sri Lanka’s ‘right of reply’ at an "exchange of views on Sri Lanka" last week at the European Parliament.  In a letter of protest addressed to Ms. Heidi Hautala, Chair of the Human Rights Sub-Committee, who was not present during the discussion, Ambassador Aryasinha pointed out that in the course of the over one hour long discussion on Sri Lanka on 6 December, of the 32 MEPs on the Sub-Committee only one chose to speak, and other than for a few comments by the European Commission, most of the time was given to a number of Non-Governmental Organisations.  The Ambassador said despite his being present and demanding Sri Lanka’s ‘right of reply’, its denial by the Presiding officer at the time, "leaves the unmistakable impression that the Human Rights Sub-Committee is not interested in having a reasoned and balanced discussion on Sri Lanka, but is merely content to allow itself (the European Parliament) to be used as a platform for LTTE apologists to discredit the Government of Sri Lanka" (Island : 19 December 2010).

UNP UK organiser demands regime change, int’l sanctions against SL - Government sources allege that the UNP is engaged in an overseas campaign targeting Sri Lanka as part of its overall strategy to discredit and destabilise the country. UK-based Dai Liyanage, who organised a conference at the House of Commons on Nov. 25 attended by Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena, is on record as having said the UNP organiser in the UK Dr. Roger Srivasan went to the extent of calling for a regime change and international sanctions against Sri Lanka. Liyanage also revealed that he invited Dr. Jayawardena for the House of Commons meet following a request by Dr. Srivasan and subsequently accommodated Dr. Wickremabahu Karunaratne on the intervention of Dr. Srivasan and Priyath Liyanage, head of the Sinhala Service of the BBC World Service. Two Sri Lankan High Commission officials, M. R. K. Lenagala (Minister Counsellor-Political) and Kapila Fonseka (Counsellor Information) were present throughout the Nov. 25 meet (Island ; 19 December 2010).

India should act fast on LTTE activities in Tamil Nadu

A danger ahead - By S Akurugoda, Melbourne, Australia - Various statements issued by foreign diplomats in Colombo concerning the affairs of the host country, including what is revealed by the most recent Wikileaks secret US Embassy cables, are typical examples of permitting foreign diplomats, especially from USA and Europe, appointed to Sri Lanka to involve in Sri Lanka’s internal matters.  The cable sent by the Ambassador Patricia Butenis in Colombo on 15 January this year cable says: "Responsibility for many of the alleged crimes rests with the country's senior civilian and military leadership, including President Rajapakse and his brothers and opposition candidate General Fonseka".According to another a secret US embassy cable dated May 18, 2007, authored by Blake, the then US Ambassador to Sri Lanka the government had a direct hand in ‘crimes committed by organized Para-military groups in 2006 and alleges President Mahinda Rajapakse of continuing para-military operations launched by CBK." The role played by infamous Robert Blake since he assumed office as Ambassador and up to now to promote the interests of his country, and not ours, is well known and need no introduction. The current role of Butenis, the successor to Blake,   is not surprising at all to those who read an investigation report appeared in 30th May 2009 in Asiantribune under the Title ‘Caution Sri lanka: New U.S. Ambassdoe Patricia Butenis – a meddler in internal affairs’ (http://www.asiantribune.com/node/18041) The report exactly predicted what will happen when Butenis assumed office in Sri Lanka and said “.... According to the investigation Asian Tribune undertook since President Obama designated Patricia Butenis as the United States envoy to Sri Lanka early this week her credentials in a former post, Bangladesh, matches well with that of Blake. Even beyond him because there was an allegation that she was promoting an Islamist fundamentalist movement Jamaat-e-Islami of Bangladesh which has some involvement in radicalism.” (Sri Lanka News Online : 19 December 2010).

On washing Butenis’ kunu redi - Someone is a Tiger. Someone is a Tiger supporter or sympathizer. Any person who belongs to any of these categories cannot be called a friend of Sri Lanka. On the other hand, is it the case that all Sri Lanka’s foes are necessarily Tigers or Tiger supporters/sympathizers? No. Dayan Jayatilleka, however, in one of his more horrendous (and hilarious) slips, this time in the LakbimaNews of December 12, 2010 titled ‘Butenis cable came downstream’, makes the argument that Sri Lanka cannot have enemies who are not Tigers or Tiger supporters. He argues, correctly, that the inability to distinguish between private critic and public enemy is a hallmark of political fundamentalism. On the other hand, not all ‘private critics’ utter their criticism in in-the-kitchen conversations which end behind the kitchen. Not all critics are harmless members of the Linda-langa-sangamaya (Gossip Club). Those who cannot see such distinctions are not political scientists or political commentators but political quacks. It is indeed unfortunate that someone like Dayan Jayatilleka has to dumb-down himself (for whatever reason) to such sorry levels. He need not have bent himself backwards to paint the US Ambassador in Colombo, Patricia Butenis as ‘friend’ but he has (Lakbima News : 19 December 2010).

Fox’s predicament - The decision by British Defence Secretary Liam Fox to postpone a visit to Sri Lanka for the Lakshman Kadirgamar memorial lecture was because he apparently caved in to pressure from the British Foreign office and Foreign Secretary William Hague, if we are to believe media reports from the United Kingdom. It is no secret that Sri Lanka’s relations with Britain are at a new low. It could be compared with the crisis nearly 20 years ago when then President Ranasinghe Premadasa expelled the British High Commissioner in Colombo, David Gladstone. That is because of the recent fiasco related to President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s visit to the United Kingdom to address the students of the University of Oxford. After travelling to Britain, the President had to cancel the lecture and return because of the potential for ugly protests by LTTE sympathisers. The British authorities were not enthusiastic about curtailing these protests. Protestors at the Heathrow Airport were allowed to display T-shirts and banners proclaiming support for the LTTE which technically is still a proscribed terrorist organisation in Britain. When questioned about this glaring anomaly, the pathetic excuse proffered by the British authorities was that this was a matter solely for the police and that if an offence had been committed it was the police who should have acted and the government had no influence over it. Of course, British bobbies who were at the scenes of the protests did act: they looked the other way! That entire incident was a reflection on the British government’s attitude towards Sri Lanka. There is no need to sugar-coat the obvious. Britain is still smarting at President Rajapaksa’s gumption to defy its pleas to halt the mid-2009 offensive against the LTTE (The Nation : 19 December 2010).

EU House: Platform for LTTE apologists - Sri Lanka said that European Parliament is allowing itself to be used as a platform for LTTE apologists to discredit Sri Lanka, an official said.  Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU Ravinatha Aryasinha while strongly protesting the denial of Sri Lanka’s ‘right of reply’ at an “exchange of views on Sri Lanka” held last week at the European Parliament, said that , “its denial by the Presiding officer at the time, ‘leaves the unmistakable impression that the Human Rights Sub-Committee is not interested in having a reasoned and balanced discussion on Sri Lanka, but is merely content to allow itself (the European Parliament) to be used as a platform for LTTE apologists to discredit the Government of Sri Lanka”.  In a letter of protest addressed to Ms. Heidi Hautala, Chair of the Human Rights Sub-Committee who was not present during the discussion, Ambassador Aryasinha pointed out that in the over one hour long discussion on Sri Lanka on 6 December, of the 32 MEPs on the Sub-Committee only one chose to speak, and other than for a few comments by the European Commission, most of the time was given to a number of Non-Governmental Organizations” (Daily Mirror : 19 December 2010).

Time to strengthen laws to counter secessionist sentiments Unarmed separatists hurting Lanka’s image -  by S Akurugoda - According to media reports, governing party members of the Sri Lankan parliament handed in a motion to the Speaker requesting for the appointment of a select committee to probe into UNP MP Dr Jayalath Jayawardana. The motion was said to be signed by 78 governing party members and has called for a select committee to probe Dr Jayawardana’s alleged involvement in anti-government protests. The select committee is to investigate whether Dr Jayawardana has violated the oath taken by legislators where they says they would not support any act that would promote separatism, as per the said reports (The Nation : 19 December 2010).

Indo-Lanka unity could crush terrorism - Sri Lanka achieved a significant milestone in the global battle against terrorism over one-and-a-half-years ago when its valiant Security Forces crushed the world's most ruthless terror outfit - the LTTE.  At the time, barely anyone believed that the LTTE could be crushed militarily as the Tigers seemed to be so powerful, holding on to land with sea and air power. They not only unleashed untold misery on millions of innocent civilians with indiscriminate bomb explosions targeting public places, but also assassinated the Heads of State in India and Sri Lanka. Hence, demolishing Tiger power and vanquishing the LTTE leadership are undoubtedly a landmark achievement in the world's military history. The LTTE's separatist campaign could have possibly even destabilised the South Asian region. Thanks to the bold decisions of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the immeasurable contribution by the Security Forces, the LTTE crumbled like nine pins.  As highlighted by Minister of External Affairs Prof. G.L. Peiris in Bangkok recently, Asian countries should co-ordinate their policies and actions to ensure that such conflicts do not endanger stability and the economic progress of the region. No country could deal with such a situation like this alone and needs regional assistance to maintain its status quo. According to recent reports from India, certain quarters, with the help of a section of the Tamil Diaspora, are now attempting to resurrect the defunct LTTE. Media reports from India said that the LTTE is trying to regroup and, moreover, planning to launch spectacular strikes on high-profile VVIP targets such as Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P. Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi, who have voiced strongly against terrorism (Sunday Observer : 19 December 2010).

UN panel representations welcome at LLRC: Govt The External Affairs Ministry, reacting to media reports of a possible visit to Sri Lanka by the UN secretary-general’s panel of experts on Sri Lanka, said yesterday that it will make the necessary arrangements to enable them to do so. In a media statement released to the media, the Ministry said this position had already been conveyed through diplomatic channels, to the UN in New York. “The Ministry wishes to point out in this regard that the Commission on Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation which was appointed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa under Section 2 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, has issued a public notice carried by the newspapers in Sri Lanka on June 18 2010 in the Sinhala, Tamil and English languages calling for representations to the commission. The Government of Sri Lanka therefore has the responsibility to facilitate those desirous of presenting representations, as set out in the mandate of the commission. “Accordingly, in the event of the panel of the secretary-general wishing to present representations to the commission, the Ministry of External Affairs will make the arrangements that are necessary to enable the panel to do so. This position has already been conveyed through diplomatic channels, to the UN in New York,” it said (The Nation ; 19 December 2010).

UN Panel to meet LLRC? - The Government will make arrangements for the UN Panel on Sri Lanka to make representations before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) if there is such a request, the External Affairs Ministry said yesterday. “The Government of Sri Lanka has the responsibility to facilitate those desirous making representations, as set out in the mandate of the LLRC. Accordingly, in the event of the Panel of the Secretary-General wishing to make representations to the Commission, the Ministry of External Affairs will make the arrangements that are necessary to enable the Panel to do so,” the Ministry said in a statement.  The Ministry was responding to reports in the media of a possible visit to Sri Lanka by the United Nations Secretary-General’s Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka. The LLRC was appointed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa under Section 2 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act.  Meanwhile, at a media conference held in New York UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has praised President Mahinda Rajapaksa for his flexibility on the issue.  He had told the media that his three-member panel would be able to visit Sri Lanka. “I appreciated the flexibility of President Rajapaksa on this issue”, he said.  Meanwhile, LLRC sources said public sittings would be wrapped up by end January 2011.  The LLRC sources said they have invited UN Residence Coordinator Neil Buhne and Tamil National Alliance Leader R. Sampanthan to testify before the Commission and were awaiting their response (Sunday Observer : 19 December 2010).

LTTE chief ‘betrayed the people’

Indo-Lanka ferry services from next year - The much-awaited passenger ferry service between Sri Lanka and India will become a reality early next year.  The Governments of the two countries have decided to first commence the ferry service between Colombo and Tuticorin.  The two Governments also plan to re-introduce the Thalaimannar to Rameswaram ferry service later. The Indian Union Cabinet approved this proposal on Wednesday and several shipping lines have already expressed interest in supplying vessels for the service.  India's Minister of Shipping, Shri G.K. Vasan has reportedly directed the Tuticorin Port Trust to build the infrastructure to begin the ferry service.  The journey from the Colombo Port would be 152 nautical miles and is expected to take around 10 hours.  This proposal was discussed at the SAARC Transport Ministers' meeting last year.  An official of the East West Group said they have already obtained Board of Investment approval to launch the service and would be looking at reviving this agreement. The company has the infrastructure to start the service at any time. The tourism industry would receive a major boost with the proposed ferry service as Indian tourist arrivals would increase.  Indian tourists already occupy the number one slot in the arrivals list to Sri Lanka.  Due to the competition from the ferry service, airfares between the two countries are also expected to come down significantly. The average return airfare to the closest Indian destination, Chennai is around Rs.12,500. "The ferry fare would be around Rs.7,500," the official said.  The ferry service between the two countries was abandoned in 1994 due to floods washing away the pier in India and LTTE problems (Sunday Observer : 19 December 2010).

New water supply projects for Jaffna, Kilinochchi - Jaffna District Secretary Imelda Sukumar said that a mega water supply project to benefit 350,000 persons in Jaffna and Kilinochchi Districts will be implemented at a cost of Rs. 2,070 million.  According to the District Secretary, the proposed project is to be carried out in several phases and the first phase of the project is to be completed by 2015. She said that Sri Lanka Government and Asian Development Bank has allocated the funds for the proposed project.  Accordingly people in Jaffna, Kodikamam, Chawakachcheri, Kaithadi, Nawatkuli, Nallur, Kopai, Karawetti, Sanganai Sandilippai, Karainakar, Achchuweli, Awarangal, Point-Pedro, Palai, Walwettithurai, Maruthankerni island areas and the Kilinochchi will benefit by this project.  The Point-Pedro water supply project is to be implemented at a cost of Rs. 515 million. It will be funded by Asian Development Fund (ADF) and IFRC. Once the project is completed nearly 20,000 families in the area will benefit.  The World Bank has allocated Rs. 225 million for the Welwettithurai water supply project.  Through this project 10,000 families in the area will benefit.Rupees 25 million has been allocated to the Maruthankerni water supply project and 10,000 families will benefit. Rupees 12.75 million has been allocated to Nedunthivu project and 4,000 families will benefit.  The water supply project is to be carried out by National Water Supply Board under the guidance of Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa and Northern Province Governor G. A. Chandrasiri (Sunday Observer : 19 December 2010).

LTTE chief ‘betrayed the people’ - The LTTE would have split even if there was no ceasefire agreement in place, Deputy Minister Resettlement Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan said. Muralitharan, in his submissions to the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) on December 13, pointed out that there were problems within the LTTE and he was not happy with its leader Velupillai Prabhakaran. He said he had tried to change Prabhakaran’s mind to work towards a negotiated settlement, but added the attempts were futile. Muralitharan said he was not happy with some of Prabhakaran’s moves and had constantly advised him against them. Muralitharan, better known by his nom de guerre Karuna Amman, joined the LTTE in 1983. He was appointed as the LTTE’s military commander of the East until his split in April 2004. CFA hope  ; He said he saw the ceasefire agreement (CFA) signed in 2002 as a window for peace for the country and an opportunity for the Tamils to get a suitable solution. Muralitharan was one of the members of the LTTE delegation that participated in the peace talks with the then UNP government. Muralitharan said he persuaded LTTE chief negotiator Anton Balasingham at that time to sign the agreement, which was not approved by the Tiger supremo. “He tore the agreement and said I had betrayed the Tamil people. I explained that war was not a solution to the problem and it had gone on for the 22 years,” he said. In addition, he stated there were other reasons leading for his break from the LTTE. He said the LTTE survived on two important factors, finance and manpower. “The northern section provided the financial support while most of the manpower was provided by the east,” he said. He added most of the LTTE casualties were from the east and he had to respond to their families. Muralitharan also pointed out that the LTTE was not committed to the peace accord and was trying to make use of the opportunity to strengthen the organisation and its international networks. He said the LTTE was very weak at the time the CFA was signed and was in need to strengthen itself. Muralitharan pointed out there were certain problems during that time, as there was an unstable government with the President and Prime Minister belonging to two different political parties. The LTTE called upon the people under its control not to take part in the Presidential elections in 2005, which resulted in the defeat of the UNP. Muralitharan said Prabhakaran was under the impression that the then Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was trying to put the LTTE in the ‘International safety net’. Muralitharan told the commission that he, along with several youngsters, decided to join the LTTE, then a secret movement, following the 1983 riots. Muralitharan said he met many riot victims who had come to Batticaloa from several parts of the country (The Nation : 19 December 2010).

Pro-Tamil US legislators urge probe WASHINGTON — Dozens of US lawmakers urged a global probe into alleged rights violations by Sri Lanka in the last stages of its civil war, saying Colombo’s own efforts do not ensure accountability. External Affairs Ministry Public Communication director-general Bandula Jayasekera, however, said in Colombo last night that such an outside role was not warranted. “We have a robust domestic mechanism in the LLRC. Mrs Clinton herself has said the commission must be given time and space to complete its task,” he said. In letters to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, 17 senators and 30 members of the House of Representatives called for the US to seek a UN role investigating last year’s finale of the LTTE insurgency. “We strongly believe that any conclusions reached by the Sri Lankan government’s commissions must be verified by a parallel international mechanism” backed by the UN, the senators wrote. “Without a means of verification, any findings will lack credibility and true accountability,” said the letter, led by Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Republican Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina. The senators said that accountability was essential to ensuring reconciliation and warned that history is “littered with failed attempts to bring peace”. In a separate letter, the House members urged the US to use its presidency of the UN Security Council this month to push forward “a credible and effective process for achieving accountability” in Sri Lanka. The House letter was led by Representatives Danny Davis and Jan Schakowsky, both Democrats from the Chicago area that has a sizable Tamil community (The Nation : 19 December 2010).

Major-General Sumeda Perera appointed Wanni Commander - Former military spokesman Brigadier Sumeda Perera has been promoted as Major-General and appointed the Security Forces Commander Wanni from Friday (17). Maj-Gen Nanda Udawatta has meanwhile been appointed the Security Forces Commander, East. Former Wanni Commander Maj-Gen Kamal Gunaratne and Eastern Commander Brigadier Boniface Perera are scheduled to leave for a foreign training. Maj-Gen Sumeda Perera WWV RWP RSP is a distinguished officer of the prestigious Gajaba Regiment. Having completed the basic officer cadet training at Officer Training School, Madras – India and Sri Lanka Military Academy, Diyatalawa, He was first posted to the Rajarata Rifles Regiment in 1981 and subsequently posted to the Gajaba Regiment in 1983 as one of the pioneers of the Gajaba Regiment. He actively participated in almost all the military operations conducted against LTTE since Operation Vadamarachchi and was an active commander who led the men in the battlefront. Maj-Gen Perera is the most decorated officer among all three forces who has received the most number of gallantry awards. He was awarded Rana Wickrama Padakkama (RWP) with two claps, Rana Sura Padakkama (RSP) with three claps and Weera Wickrama Vibhushanaya (WWV) awarded for individual acts of gallantry and conspicuous bravery of a high order in the face of the enemy. He was injured in the battlefield in 1984 and honoured with Desha Puthra Medal. He, together with his troops of 533 Brigade, waged a fierce battle at Sarasalai-Jaffna on May 21, 2000 to defeat LTTE offensive ‘Unceasing Wave’ to re-capture Jaffna Peninsula killing around 300 terrorists including a few leaders. The ultimate outcome of this counter action multiplied the morale of the troops and the myth of the LTTE’s invincibility began to erode further. It not only saved the Sarasalai junction, but the city of Jaffna as well, leading to more counter offensives in the future. Maj-Gen Perera is one of the pioneers of the Air Mobile Brigade of the Sri Lanka Army and Commanded the first battalion of the Gajaba Regiment. He has commanded the 533 Infantry Brigade during the high intensive battles fought against LTTE. He was the Commandant of the Army Training School and Infantry Training School. Maj. Gen. A K S Perera also held the post of Director Media at Army Headquarters (The Nation : 19 December 2010).

TNA rules out leadership change - Mavai allays political concerns as Sampanthan recovers from heart op in India - By Arthur Wamanan A fresh move by the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) to work with other Tamil parties with a view to finding a durable solution to the ethnic conflict has united all the parties under one umbrella. The TNA agreed to hold talks with members of the Tamil Parties Forum (TPF) on finding a suitable solution to the ethnic problem, following a meeting held on December 12. TNA parliamentary group leader R Sampanthan is currently in India, recuperating after a heart surgery he underwent on December 7, is expected to return next month. The party, however, will continue with its routine activities and discussions despite the absence of Sampanthan, senior TNA parliamentarian Mavai Senathiraja said. There were also speculations that there could be a leadership change in the party due to the health issues facing Sampanthan. Senathiraja brushed off such speculations and said there was no need for such leadership changes and that the party would continue to function as usual. The TNA is the largest party representing the Tamil community in Parliament. It also met President Mahinda Rajapaksa on June 7 to discuss the political situation in the country and on the issues faced by the Tamil people in the post war period. The importance of unity among the Tamil political parties in Sri Lanka had been widely discussed after the completion of the war in May 2009. Before the fighting ended, the stance of the Tamil political parties mostly depended on the LTTE. Either they were with them, or not. However, the end of the war had paved way for the Tamil parties, especially the TNA to act independently (The Nation : 19 December 2010).

Sri Lanka ready to provide necessary protocol assistance to UK Defence Secretary's private visit

India Should Act Fast - By Malin Abeyatuna, Melbourne, Australia - INDIA SHOULD ACT FAST Posted on December 18th, 2010 Malin Abeyatunge The latest news as reported by Times Of India that LTTE‘s latest plan to assassinate Indian PM Manamohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu CM Karunanidhi has to be treated very seriously not only by the Indian Government, but by Sri Lanka and the countries in the western world who still mollycoddle LTTE activists in their countries. Although Sri Lanka defeated the most brutal terrorist outfit militarily, its remnants which consists of Tamil Diaspora are still active in countries like USA, Canada, UK, some EU countries, Scandinavian countries, down under Australia and India in an attempt to revive LTTE and their dream of Tamil Eelam with blessings of these countries. Recently when Sri Lanka protested of allowing V. Rudrakumaran (American citizen) and his gang to form a Transnational Provisional Eelam Parliament in USA, the US Ambassador in Sri Lanka Ms. Butenis said that the US Government cannot stop it as the constitution allows freedom of speech. Only thing is that she has forgotten that same thing does not apply to the Al Qaeda or Taliban operatives in USA. UK recently allowed LTTE Tamil Diaspora to protest against President Rajapaksa’s arrival waving tiger flags despite the fact that LTTE is a banned terrorist outfit in UK. India has a guilt of training and nurturing LTTE terrorists on their soil. India should galvanize all their intelligence services and take immediate steps and action to wipe out this threat presumably coming from Tamil Nadu which is a terrorist den of fleeing LTTE cadres protected by some politicos in Tamil Nadu. Such threats would destabilize not only the Indian Region but whole of Asia. With subtle Indianisation of the North and the East and improving passenger movement to and fro from Palk Sraits; opening of Indian Consulate in Jaffna etc, LTTE can still be a threat to Sri Lanka. It’s fact that LTTE is not a threat to USA, UK, Canada and the rest of the western world unlike Al Qaeda or Muslim fundamentalists but it still remains a threat to Sri Lanka thro their LTTE Tamil Diaspora. With the latest threat by LTTE activists spread around India and mainly coming from Tamil Nadu, it’s time that India requested USA, UK, Canada, UK and other EU and Scandinavian countries to take strong action against the LTTE Diaspora activists who still aim for an Eelam who are thriving with the hospitality of these countries. INDIA SHOULD ACT FAST AND DEMAND THE WESTERN WORLD WHO MOLLYCODDLE LTTE ACTIVISTS TO TAKE LEGAL ACTION AGAINST THE TAMIL DIASPORA AND THEIR DUBIOUS FRONTS (Sri Lanka News Online ; 18 December 2010).

AUDIO: Expert Panel should not be allowed to enter the country - Wimal - If the Expert Panel, appointed by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to probe in to Sri Lanka’s so called human right violations is preparing visit Sri Lanka to carryout investigations, then they should not be given any space to do so, says Wimal Weerawansa.  The External Affairs Ministry previously was on this standpoint, they should continue with the same stand and that is his stand the Minister pointed out while speaking to Ada Derana regarding the possible arrival of the UN Expert Panel to Sri Lanka to meet the LLRC.  Weerawansa accused that the Non Governmental Organization mafia within the country is successful in creating any number of bogus witnesses as needed.  By allowing this panel to enter the country and prepare bogus reports by meeting fake witnesses it may create an opportunity for groups opposing the government to feed them false information and thereby assist to accomplish enemy objectives, he pointed out.  “In no manner should Ban Ki-moon’s three member committee be allowed to enter the country. If they are to enter as such then the entire country and the people should stand up against them in protest” the Housing and Engineering Minister sternly stated.  Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon in a media briefing yesterday had stated that the Expert Panel appointed by him plans to visit Sri Lanka and meet with the Lessons Learned and Reconciliation Commission appointed by the President.  He had also stated that the Panel will be able to visit Sri Lanka following a discussion held between himself and Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa (Ada Derana ; 18 December 2010).

Cowardly Brits prevent Liam Fox from delivering the Lakshman Kadirgamar Lecture - by Vish Abeygunawardena - It is an absolute travesty of justice for the British Government to prevent Defense Secretary, Liam Fox, from visiting Sri Lanka, to present the Lakshman Kadirgamar memorial lecture. Mr. Fox had been invited by the late Foreign Minister’s widow to give the lecture. However, it seems like the British Government, led by the cowardly, William Hague, has persuaded Mr. Fox to cancel his trip to Sri Lanka. The late Lakshman Kadirgamar was a true hero of Sri Lanka. A Tamil, he vociferously defended the right of the Government of Sri Lanka to safeguard its territorial integrity and was persuasive in depicting the Tamil Tigers as nothing more than a murderous, terrorist outfit. Nobody else had ever had Mr. Kadirgamar’s impact in eruditely championing Sri Lanka’s cause abroad. For the British Government to stop Liam Fox from honouring this great man shows absolute cowardice and shows that a bunch of rag tag terrorist sympathizers can hold the Foreign Office hostage. When Mr. Kadirgamar passed away, former US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, praised Mr. Kadirgamar as a man of “dignity, honour and integrity.” For the British Government to prevent Mr. Fox from honoring such a great diplomat shows that the Foreign Office has lost whatever credibility it had and has further eroded any moral suasion Britain had in Sri Lanka (LankaWeb : 18 December 2010).

GL meets LLRC after newsbreak that Ban’s panel will be here - External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris yesterday met the chairman and members of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) following the newsbreak in New York that UN Secretary General Ban ki-Moon had announced at his year-end press conference on Friday that his expert panel on Sri Lanka will be here. He said following "long consultations between myself and President Rajapaksa of Sri Lanka, I am pleased that the panel of experts is now able to visit Sri Lanka and meet with the Commission on Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation." Ban said he sincerely hoped that the panel will be able to have "good co-operation, to have an accountability process and make progress as soon as possible."  "This is a result of long consultations," Ban said adding that he ``appreciated the flexibility of President Rajapaksa on this issue." Diplomatic sources said that the interpretation of Ban’s remarks raised some questions. While the LLRC is most willing to meet with Ban’s panel and will certainly look into any material it provides and have it investigated, it may not be agreeable to everything that the panel may want.  The LLRC has already moved to have matters raised by Channel 4 Television in the UK investigated and it is very open to follow such a process wherever it is provided with information that requires investigation.  After Peiris’s meeting with members of the LLRC, the External Affairs Ministry issued a news release saying its attention has been drawn to reports "of a possible visit to Sri Lanka by the UN Secretary General’s panel of experts on Sri Lanka." (Island : 18 December 2010).

TERRORISTS REGROUPING IN INDIA - by Shripal Nishshanka Fernando - According to the latest international intelligent reports, the most notorious terrorist group in the world LTTE is at its best efforts to regroup in TamilNadu India. The LTTE was successfully wiped out from Sri Lanka by annihilation of its leaders and apprehending key supporters in May 2009 by the present Sri Lankan government under the brave leadership of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. As per the saying ‘what goes around comes around’ or according to an action of a boom-a rang, this inhumane terrorist organization has turned back to its original birth place of TamilNadu India to rejuvenate. It was the heinous underworld acts of late Indira Gandhi in late sixties that initiated the organizing of Tamil terrorism by funding, providing training, moral support and arms and ammunition to Sri Lankan Tamil groups to fight with Sri Lankan government forces which became a disastrous menace to the whole world today. It was discovered that LTTE suicide cadres had trained Al-Qaida operatives in suicide missions for September 11 attacks in 2001 and in return they had obtained missiles from Al Qaida to use against Sri Lankan forces which Al Qaida had been using in Afghanistan to attack Russian forces. By the wise and ingenious war tactics under the master plan by Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, the smart Defense Secretary of Sri Lanka, LTTE was eradicated stylishly from Sri Lanka. Today Gotabhaya is implementing bold measures to reinstate the stability of Sri Lanka further by closing all loop holes in the infrastructure of Sri Lankan national security system so that no terrorist can play in the island ever (LankaWeb : 18 December 2010).

Interview with Liam Fox - way back in April 1997 - .... Three rounds of talks initiated by the Chandrika Kumaratunga PA Government and the LTTE broke down when the LTTE sank two naval vessels in Trincomalee harbour on 19 April 1995, exploding the truce and plunging the country again into turmoil. As peace efforts took a back seat and war became a priority, a surprise initiative came from Britain in April 1997. Liam Fox, the British Foreign Office Under Secretary, was here in Sri Lanka then to help, or as I would say, encourage the government and the opposition to unite to settle the LTTE problem through negotiations. He brokered a bipartisan agreement between the PA and the UNP. What I have quoted above is the final summing up of Liam Fox in conversation with journalist Sujeewa Nivunhella in London during an interview recorded by Nimal and Ranjani Mendis consequent to the major role Fox, noted as a British politician who genuinely had the best interests of Sri Lanka in heart and mind, played in our conflict with the LTTE. Many now sneer at negotiated settlements and even at the present leader of the opposition. Some go to the extent of naming him a traitor, a very much used word under the present dispensation. But what must be kept in mind is that a negotiated settlement was then thought to be the best option and people worked for it, like President Kumaratunga and Ranil Wickremesinghe, assisted by such as Liam Fox, Under Secretary with Rt. Hon Malcolm Rifkin as Foreign Secretary in the John Major government. Britain came in as an experienced friend to help, having succeeded in bilateral negotiations with the IRA bringing in understanding and peace between the Irish terrorists and the government of Britain (Island : 18 December 2010).

Letter to Manicka Vasagar - By Asoka Weerasinghe, Ontario, Canada - My response to his/her letter to Hon. Jason Kenney MP, in response to my letter addressed to the Minister Jason Kenney on November 20, 2010.  I have just read your letter to Minister Jason Kenny, after my return to Ottawa from Sri Lanka where I presented myself to the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC). You, ‘as a non Sri Lankan Tamil’ had the gall and temerity to lie your way into my territory admonishing me as a “Racist” to defend the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam cause, the group of terrorists who were banned in Canada in April 2006 and had their arses whipped by Sri Lanka’s military, and on May 18, 2009, saw Prabhakaran and his crew die in knee deep muddy waters of Nandikathal lagoon from bullet wounds.  Halleluiah! So your buggers ended their military campaign to claim a good chunk of the best real-estate of Sri Lanka bordered by 66 per cent of the coastline as their mono-ethnic, racist, Tamil separatist state, Eelam. What you failed to tell Minister Kenny was that the July 24, 1983 riots were a God’s send which gave your Tamils the opportunity to fly out of the cuckoo’s Jaffna Palmyra nest and fan all over the globe, saying that you all were persecuted by the majority Sinhalese, as 90 per cent of your lot wouldn’t have had a snowball of a chance in hell to immigrate if they had tried the legal route subjected to the specific country’s point system. You can take that fact and smoke it Vasagar and I couldn’t care two rotting thosais even if you had to choke on the smoke (Sinhale Hot News : 18 December 2010).

Singaporean sentenced in LTTE arms slot - A Singapore national has been sentenced to nearly five years in prison for trying to provide material support to Sri Lanka’s Tamil Tigers, foreign media report said.  US District Court in Baltimore sentenced 48-year-old Balraj Naidu on Thursday.  He was convicted in October of conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization.  The federal prosecutors say Naidu was part of a conspiracy to buy weapons for the Tamil Tigers, a group that was fighting since 1976 for a separate state in Sri Lanka.  Prosecutors say Naidu tried to buy $900,000 in weapons from an undercover business in Maryland (Daily Mirror : 18 December 2010).

Ex-LTTE cadres well looked after - IOM Chief - Former LTTE combatants at rehabilitation centres were well-looked after and there had been no complaints, International Organization for Migration (IOM) Chief of Mission in Sri Lanka, Richard Danziger said.  Addressing the media at the IOM Colombo Office, on the eve of the International Migrants’ Day, Richard Danziger said that the IOM has provided an opportunity for the ex-LTTE combatants to reintegrate into the civilian society by providing job opportunities and training in different vocations. “We are helping the ex-combatants to return to society and re-integrate with their families as some of them are breadwinners,” he added. Responding to a query, the IOM Head said there seemed to be no cases of ill-treatment and the program was being conducted at a satisfactory level.  The IOM had commenced a program to help those rehabilitated even before the war came to an end in the North, he said.  With regard to funding, Danziger said that the USA and the Netherlands had been helping the IOM, but it needed more funding.  He said that it was important to ensure that the migrants enjoyed their rights.  “The Sri Lankan migrants overseas have contributed a lot to the country’s economy,” he pointed out.  When questioned about the Sri Lankans who had tried to enter other countries illegally and were deported, he said: “You cannot stop migration, but Sri Lanka has upgraded border management and we were working closely with the Government.” Courtesy: President’s Media Unit (Daily News : 18 December 2010).

Jaffna felicitates Maj Gen Hathurusinghe - Jaffna Commander Maj Gen Mahinda Hathurusinghe was felicitated in Jaffna at a function held at Catholic Guardian office. This function was arranged to demonstrate publicly the sentiments of the people of Jaffna on the awarding of "Kushi" Peace award by the government of Philippines to the Jaffna commander.  Major Gen Mahinda Hathurusinghe in his speech said that the award given to him is an honour to our country. The award has demonstrated to the world that the people of this country are living united in peace and harmony. After 30 years of war a harmonious situation is prevailing in this country. We must preserve this harmony and the unity of the people and ensure sustained peace in our country.  He expressed the army's sorrow at the demise of the Chief Priest Murugamoorty temple at Chankanai. He would take stern action against the Corporal who had alleged lent a rifle to shoot the chief priest of the temple at the Chankanai robbery.  The felicitation function was attended by Bishop of Jaffna Mgr Dr Thomas Saundranayagam, Bishop of Jaffna Diocese of the Church of South India Dr Danies Thiyagarajah Hindu Prelne Sri La Sri Somasundara Paramacharyar Swamigul and the leading citizens of Jaffna (Daily News : 18 December 2010).

Sri Lanka ready to provide necessary protocol assistance to UK Defence Secretary's private visit - The Sri Lankan government is ready to provide necessary protocol assistance and facilities to the private visit of Dr. Liam Fox, the United Kingdom's Secretary of State for Defence. Issuing a statement Friday, the Sri Lankan Ministry of External Affairs said that despite the private nature of the visit of Dr. Fox, it had made all arrangements to provide the necessary protocol assistance and facilitation to Dr. Fox during his planned stay in Sri Lanka. The UK Defence Secretary cancelled his visit to the island this weekend citing a busy schedule due to an extension to his scheduled official visit to the Gulf. Dr. Fox was scheduled to deliver the Lakshman Kadirgamar memorial lecture scheduled on December 18 at the invitation by the widow of the late Sri Lankan Foreign Minister who was gunned down by the LTTE in 2005. "Despite the private nature of the visit, due to the status of the visitor and the important nature of the Oration, the Ministry in association with the other concerned agencies of Government had made all arrangements to provide the necessary protocol assistance and facilitation to Dr. Fox during his planned stay in Sri Lanka," the External Affairs Ministry confirming that Dr. Fox cancelled the visit said in the statement. "These same arrangements will be afforded, in the event of the Foundation rescheduling the Oration by Dr. Fox for a future date," the Ministry added. British media reported that the British Defence Secretary had been pressured by the Foreign Secretary William Hague to scrap the trip and the Foreign Office was debating whether to appeal to the Prime Minister to prevent Fox from visiting Sri Lanka. Dr. Fox has however said that he intends to carry out an official visit to Sri Lanka next year during which he proposes to fulfill the speaking engagement that he had planned (Colombo Page : 18 December 2010).

The smile on the face of the Tiger - So Liam Fox, the British Defence Minister, was not here yesterday to deliver the Lakshman Kadirgamar Memorial Lecture. He was very keen on coming and all indications were that he was standing up to the various pressures mounted on him to keep off due to Britain’s current attitude towards Sri Lanka. The foreign office, where he was junior minister when he brokered the so-called Fox Agreement for the UNP and the CBK government to present a united front in negotiations between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE to end the war, was the principal pressure point. The invitation for Fox to deliver the lecture had been made months ago and his acceptance was not a secret. Why then the eleventh hour cancellation or postponement as it has been euphemistically labelled? It looks suspiciously similar to the cancellation of President Rajapaksa’s Oxford Union lecture after he arrived in the UK to deliver it. All this does not make the Brits look good. Fox, despite being Defence Minister of Her Majesty’s Government, obviously does not enjoy the much vaunted freedom of speech and freedom of movement. There also seems to be an element of turf war between the ministers – Fox and Foreign Secretary William Hague. British media reports as late as Thursday suggested that Fox was not backing down despite foreign office pressure and the matter may now have to go to Downing Street. That must be where the final word originated. So some 300 invitees who were looking forward to hearing a friend of Sri Lanka, and of Kadirgamar’s, deliver a lecture honouring a Sri Lankan who made a signal contribution to the war against the LTTE by effectively rebutting Tiger propaganda and securing the banning of that terrorist movement in several countries of the world including the UK, have been disappointed (Island : 18 December 2010).

Assassination bid on Manamohan Singh should concern India

Open letter to M. Posner - by Ira de Silva London, Canada - Reference your statement on Sri Lanka on December 12,2010 it is reported that you have said that the U.S. is continuing to engage with the Sri Lankan Government on the issue of looking at the past. It is further reported that you have stated that there is a very real internal discussion of what your alternatives are and that you "are aware of some of the humanitarian issues that continue to be of concern, as well as the issues of how to deal with the past" Regarding issues of "looking at the past" in reference to Sri Lanka, please take into consideration the active role of the U.S. ambassador in Sri Lanka who made it his concern to support the LTTE terrorists even though the LTTE was designated as a terrorist organization by the U.S. Further, provide Sri Lanka with an explanation as to why the U.S. led the so-called international community in it’s effort to save the leadership of the LTTE terrorists in the final stages of a thirty year terrorist war while the U.S. was supposedly leading the world on a war on terrorism. That subject will provide you with an opportnity for some "real internal discussion" with the proponents of that policy (Island : 17 December 2010).

Assassination bid on Manamohan should concern India, SL - The latest news as reported by Times of India that LTTE‘s latest plan to assassinate Indian PM Manamohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu CM Karunanidhi has to be treated very seriously not only by the Indian Government, but by Sri Lanka and the countries in the western world who still molly coddle LTTE activists in their countries. Although Sri Lanka defeated the most brutal terrorist t outfit militarily, its remnants which consists of Tamil Diaspora are still active in countries like USA, Canada, UK, some EU countries, Scandinavian countries, down under Australia and India in an attempt to revive LTTE and their dream of Tamil Eelam with blessings of these countries. Recently when Sri Lanka protested of allowing V. Rudrakumaran and his gang to form Transitional Provisional Eelam Parliament in USA, the US Ambassador in Sri Lanka Ms. Butenis said that the US Government cannot stop it as the constitution allows freedom of speech. Only thing is that she has forgotten that same thing does not apply to the Al Qaeda or Taliban operatives in USA. UK recently allowed LTTE Tamil Diaspora to protest against President Rajapaksa’s arrival waving tiger flags despite the fact that LTTE is a banned terrorist outfit in UK. India should galvanize all their intelligence services and take immediate steps and action to wipe out this threat presumably coming from Tamil Nadu which is a terrorist den of fleeing LTTE cadres protected by some politicos in Tamil Nadu. Such threats would destabilize not only the Indian Region but whole of Asia. It’s fact that LTTE is not a threat to USA, UK, Canada and the rest of the western world unlke Al Qaeda or Muslim fundamentalists (Island : 17 December 2010).

Sri Lanka willing to assist India fight LTTE threat - Colombo—Sri Lanka, says it is willing to assist India combat any threat by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE),if a request is received.  Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwalle, when asked about intelligence reports that the LTTE were planning to assassinate the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh among others, said that Sri Lanka was prepared to help India fight terror attacks, provided there was a request to that effect.  The Indian Intelligence Bureau (IIB) on Wednesday said that some LTTE cadres who had managed to escape to Tamil Nadu from Sri Lanka, were trying to regroup and launch spectacular strikes on high profile targets like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, M Karunanidhi.  According to IIB, the LTTE cadres believed that the Indian government’s silence was the cause of their defeat, at the hands of the Sri Lankan security forces on May 19,2009, after a near three decades of war.  The IIB, said it was taking the LTTE threat seriously, as it had in 1991,killed former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi while he was campaigning in the South Indian state of Madras.  Rambukwalle, also said that the government had decided to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with India,for the establishment of a Sea Passenger Transport Service.  The service, will initially operate between Colombo and Tuticorin (Thuthukudi) as well as between Thalaimannar and Rameshwaram. It, would be expanded to other ports later (Pakistan Observer ; 17 December 2010).

Sri Lanka - Ex-LTTE cadres well looked after – IOM Chief - Former LTTE combatants at rehabilitation centres are well looked after and there had been no complaints, International Organisation for Migration (IOM) Chief of Mission in Sri Lanka, Richard Danziger stated. Addressing the media at the IOM Colombo office, on the eve of the International Migrants’ Day, Danziger said that the IOM had provided opportunity for ex-LTTE combatants to reintegrate into civilian society by providing job opportunities and training in different vocations. "We are helping ex-combatants to return to society and re-integrate with their families as some of them are breadwinners,” he added. Responding to a query, the IOM Head said there seemed to be no cases of ill-treatment and the programme was being conducted at a satisfactory level. The IOM had commenced a programme to help those rehabilitated even before the war came to an end in the North, he said. With regard to funding, Danziger said that the USA and Netherlands had been helping the IOM but it needed more funding. He said that it as important to ensure that the migrants enjoyed their rights. "The Sri Lankan migrants overseas have contributed a lot to the country’s economy," he pointed out. When questioned about the Sri Lankans who had tried to enter other countries illegally and been deported, he said, "You cannot stop migration but Sri Lanka has upgraded border management and we are working closely with the government." (ISRIA : 17 December 2010).

Wikileaks Expose: India said in early 2007 Situ ‘bad, really bad, beyond bleak’ - While the Sri Lankan armed forces were battling the LTTE in the East in early 2007, India expressed serious concern that the situation in Sri Lanka was rapidly deteriorating, according to a confidential US embassy missive released by the whistle blowing website, Wikileaks.  The US cable dated April 27, 2007 dealt with the situation in Sri Lanka at an initial stage of the military campaign launched by President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s government in response to the LTTE declaring war in the second week of August, 2006.  The cable quoted senior Indian officials as saying that the situation in Sri Lanka was ‘beyond bleak’ and that neither the government nor Tamil separatists had any ‘regard’ for the international community and also sought a briefing from the US regarding Sri Lanka’s growing relations with China.  Sources pointed out that a discussion between Indian and US officials based in New Delhi on April 26, 2007 had been the basis of the embassy cable in the wake of the launch of Sri Lanka’s military operations on the Vanni front in March 2007.  Military sources said that contrary to the perception in New Delhi, Sri Lankan forces had liberated the Eastern Province within three months. The LTTE collapsed on May 19, two years later.  A New Delhi based US diplomat quotes in the leaked cable Mohan Kumar, Joint Secretary of the External Affairs Ministry as saying, "The situation in Sri Lanka is "bad, really bad - beyond bleak."  The US official said that Kumar had called the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE as two sets of people with scant regard for the international community and was sceptical that political progress could be achieved anytime soon.  The embassy official says: "Kumar confirmed reports that the Indian Navy has stepped up patrols in the Palk Strait, and said that India and Sri Lanka are doing coordinated patrolling to prevent the smuggling of weapons from the Tamil Nadu coast. Kumar said it would be helpful to get the American assessment of the port being built in Hambantota, which he estimated China was willing to spend US $500 million to help develop." He noted that China has increased its influence with President Rajapaksa, opining that Rajapaksa had a "soft spot" for China following his visit to Beijing in March (Island : 17 December 2010).

Forgive them, Kadir! - Time was when Britain's democratic values earned it much admiration even from its bitterest critics. But, today, they have manifestly fallen by the way side. Britain is becoming more and more intolerant of dissent while hypocritically extolling the virtues of free speech etc. About two weeks ago, a visiting Head of State was denied his right to expression at the Oxford University, much to the shock and dismay of the civilised world. President Mahinda Rajapaksa had to return home, unable to address the OU, because his lecture was cancelled at the behest of LTTE, activists who turned violent.  Britain has done it again! It has prevented Defence Secretary Liam Fox from visiting Sri Lanka to deliver the Lakshman Kadirgamar Memorial Lecture 2010. Mr. Fox did his best to honour his promise but pressure from his government was too heavy for him to resist; he gave in. His plight is understandable.  It is a crying shame that the British government has failed to be different from the LTTE backers who have earned notoriety for suppressing others' freedom of speech. However, terror advocates’ freedom of expression is safeguarded in Britain! They are allowed to hold rallies, make public speeches advocating terrorism, stage violent protests, block roads, surround the British Parliament, display the flag of a proscribed terrorist outfit and even threaten visiting foreign leaders with impunity! Little wonder British undergraduates have taken a leaf out of their book and are hurling stones at the members of the royal family by way of protest (Island: 17 December 2010).

LTTE committed HR abuses - US - The latest cables published by WikiLeaks website highlight human rights abuses committed by the LTTE and the SLMM of turning a blind eye to LTTE forced conscription.  Sources told representatives of the US embassy to Sri Lanka that the LTTE regularly demanded a cut of international NGOs' spending in the areas they controlled. Other sources described a harsh regime of compulsory conscription into fighting forces. "If they fail to report, they are taken forcibly, often at night," one said.  "The Tigers require at least one person between the ages of 18 and 35 per family to fight for the LTTE, apparently believing that if the "draftees" are at least 18 years old, the international community cannot criticize the Tigers for requiring military service. The LTTE provides written notice to draftees with orders to report to a particular military office for service. If they fail to report, they are taken forcibly, often at night."  Cables from early this year referred to "progress" by the Government of Sri Lanka on a range of human rights issues in recent months. "There has been a dramatic improvement in the treatment of IDPs and their living conditions … [and] numbers of disappearances have experienced a steady and significant decline across the island since the end of the war," one dispatch said.  Another cable released in 207 said that Indian officials warn US the situation in Sri lanka is ‘beyond bleak’ and that neither the government nor Tamil separatists fighting in the island nation's north have any ‘regard’ for the international community ... and request a briefing on China's aid to Colombo. Another affirmed that "child soldiers affiliated with the [paramilitaries] have been significantly reduced over the past year, with just five reportedly remaining at the end of 2009." (Daily Mirror : 17 December 2010).

"The Portuguese Presence in Sri Lanka": By Dr. Susantha Goonatilake - A 16th Century Clash of Civilizations - Quite a number of works have been written covering the Western colonial phase in Sri Lanka. As it has been observed, the problem with writing the history of the colonial phase is that those who created the archives were foreign to the country and naturally incorporated their biases towards themselves and towards whom they subjugated. P. D Curtin, Professor of History, John Hopkins University, an expert on slave trade, writing in the six-volumed UNESCO General History of Africa observed that there could be disastrous results in writing colonial history if historians neglected to bring another point of view through oral interviews with living people who experienced the colonial rule (Island : 17 December 2010).

Southern States of India alerted against LTTE attacks

US embassy cables: Human rights abuses by Tamil Tigers - SUBJECT: SRI LANKA: TAMIL TIGERS SIPHON OFF PART OF INTERNATIONAL RELIEF FUNDS Classified By: Ambassador Robert O. Blake, Jr., for reasons 1.4(b,d). 1. (S) SUMMARY: In late May PolOff met the XXXXXXXXXXXX described the LTTE's complete control of all activities that take place in Tiger-controlled territory, including forced conscription and the use of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) to extract money from INGOs. XXXXXXXXXXXX also criticized the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission's (SLMM) complacency in the face of coercive techniques the LTTE employs to maintain control of its northern stronghold. On June 8, after meetings with representatives from UNICEF, UNHCR and the World Food Program to discuss how these organizations fund projects operating in the Vanni, Emboffs confirmed that in some circumstances INGOs are required to work with TRO to accomplish their project goals. END SUMMARY (The Guardian UK, 16 December 2010).

France removes T’chelvan’s statue - Following a strong protest by the Sri Lankan government, France has removed a statue of former LTTE Political wing leader S. P. Thamilchelvan.  Director General of Public Communication and External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Bandula Jayasekara told The Island the statue had been unveiled on Nov. 1 at La Courneuve by those sympathetic to the LTTE.  He said that the Franco-Tamil Association of La Courneuve had been responsible for the display of a bust of Suppayya Paramu Thamilchelvan, sculpted by a local artist, opposite the Art gallery Le Sens de l’Art in La Courneuve, within the district of Seine-Saint Denis.  The External Affairs Ministry raised the issue with the Mayor and the members of the La Courneuve Municipality.  The bust of former LTTE commander has been moved to a private gallery elsewhere (Island : 16 December 2010).

It is reliably understood that the accused in the case of attack on two Singhalese students in NSW, Australia in May 2009 was sentenced on Monday 13 December 2010 to 10 years with a parole period of not less than 6.5 years.

Southern States alerted against LTTE attacks - The Centre has issued an alert to all southern States, particularly Tamil Nadu, following intelligence inputs that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), which was run over by the army in Sri Lanka, may be trying to regroup in India. Fresh threats - Highly placed sources in the Union Home Ministry said on Thursday that intelligence agencies had warned of fresh threats from the LTTE to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi, Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram and Union Home Secretary G. K. Pillai. They said the inputs, emanating from different quarters, indicated a threat to Dr. Singh who is scheduled to visit Tamil Nadu in the first week of January. LTTE terror elements might have entered the country and could be in hiding in Tamil Nadu or other Southern States. The inputs also pointed to the possibility of LTTE cadres collecting equipment or explosives to build up their capability to launch attacks. The sources, however, said it was not clear how and from where LTTE elements were procuring explosives, arms or ammunition (Hindu : 16 December 2010).

LTTE regrouping, may target Indian VVIPs - According to sources in the Tamil Nadu it got a tip-off that the LTTE has been regroup;ing in the state and plaaning to target the Indian VVIPs.  The police is reviewing VVIP security, especially keeping in mind the visit by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to the state on January 3 next.  LTTE is responsible for the assassination of the former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on May 21, 1991 when parliamentary election was going on in the country. It needs to be kept in mind that the Asssembly election is due in Tamil Nadu next year.  As the LTTE is unable to make its presence felt in Sri Lanka they are likely to strike high profile blows in India to send the message that they are still alive (Khabrein : 16 December 2010).

Sri Lanka willing to assist India combat LTTE threat ; Following reports of LTTE targeting Manmohan Singh, Chidambaram, Karunanidhi ; India-Sri Lanka Sea Passenger Transport Service to be established - Sri Lanka will assist India combat any LTTE threat, if a request was received, the government said yesterday.  Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella, when asked at yesterday’s Cabinet press briefing in Colombo, about intelligence reports that the LTTE was planning to assassinate the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh among others, said that Sri Lanka was prepared to help India fight terror attacks, provided there was a request to that effect.  The Indian Intelligence Bureau (IIB) on Wednesday said that some LTTE cadres who had managed to escape to Tamil Nadu, were trying to regroup and launch spectacular strikes on high profile targets like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P. Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi.  The LTTE cadres, it said believe that the Indian governments silence was the cause of their defeat, at the hands of the Sri Lankan security forces.  The IIB said that it was taking the LTTE threat seriously, as it had in 1991, killed former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi while he was campaigning in the South Indian state of Madras.  Rambukwella, also said that the government has decided to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with India, for the establishment of a Sea Passenger Transport Service.  The service will initially be established between Colombo and Tuticorin (Thuthukudi) and Thalaimannar and Rameshwaram.It,would be expanded to other ports later, he said.  Rambukwella, said that sea passenger transport would benefit the large number of businessmen, tourists, pilgrims and students, who travel regularly to each others countries (Island : 16 December 2010).

Monster turns on surrogate mother - Terrorism comes home to roost and devours its creator. This is an eternal truth. Rajiv Gandhi, who helped fertilise the egg of Sri Lanka's separatism, which was then deposited in the womb of Mother India to create the LTTE monster, finally paid for his blunder with his dear life. Prabhakaran thanked him for the services rendered by sending a 'child of fire'. Appapillai Amirthalingham et al, who took the monster under their wing in its infancy, mollycoddled and nurtured it, had their brains blown off at its hands. President Ranasinghe Premadasa smiled as he rode the Tiger, having donated arms, ammunition, money, cement and funds and they returned from the ride with him inside! This has been the fate of most of the leaders who helped the Tigers. Others escaped thanks to Sri Lanka's current political leadership and military that destroyed the LTTE killing machine last year.  Unfortunately, India buckled under Tamil Nadu pressure and baulked at taking on the LTTE on its soil. Now, we learn that the LTTE (Tamil Nadu Branch) poses a threat to Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh's life! The monster seems to be turning on the creator's friends and kinsmen as well!  The LTTE cannot make a comeback in Sri Lanka but it must be having the capability to unleash terrorism in India, where it also finds conditions conducive to regeneration thanks to the backing of Tamil Nadu's lunatic fringe driven by hatred (Island : 16 December 2010).

Rounding up the LTTE in Europe - Delegations of European countries here to investigate into terrorist activities in the EU - Delegations from several European countries including Switzerland, Belgium and The Netherlands visited Sri Lanka to have meetings with regard to investigations into LTTE activities in their countries, the External Affairs Ministry said.  A Ministrial report says that the Sri Lankan Embassy in Rome is constantly working with Italy-Sri Lanka agencies to ensure the definite prosecution of 31 LTTE activists arrested in that country in 2008. The report says that the activities of the pro-LTTE groups such as Italian Tamils of Ealam Tamil are closely monitored.  The Embassy in Hague had coordinated with the Dutch Counter Terrorism Bureau and the Public Prosecutor’s Office of that country regarding investigations into the LTTE’s criminal activities. A delegation from the Prosecutor’s Office visited Sri Lanka in July, 2010 in this regard.  Another delegation from the Belgium Federal Police visited Sri Lanka in February, 2010 to discuss about LTTE activities in that country.  Sri Lankan has also sought the support of Bulgaria to list the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) in the European Union’s list of terrorist organizations.  Besides, a Swiss delegation of the Swiss Attorney General’s Department and the Federal Criminal Police had talks with Sri Lankan authorities in July about LTTE activities in that country (Daily Mirror ; 16 December 2010).

LTTE targets PM and Home Minister

Time to strengthen laws to counter separatist sentiments - By S Akurugoda, Melbourne, Australia - According to media reports, governing party members of the Sri Lankan parliament handed in a motion to the Speaker requesting for the appointment of a select committee to probe into UNP MP Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena. The motion was said to be signed by 78 governing party members and has called for a select committee to probe Dr. Jayawardena’s alleged involvement in anti-government protests.The select committee is to investigate whether Dr. Jayawardena has violated the oath taken by legislators where they says they would not support any act that would promote separatism, as per the said reports. Under Article 157A, Prohibition against violation of territorial integrity of Sri Lanka, of the constitution of Sri Lanka, no person shall, directly or indirectly, in or outside Sri Lanka, support, espouse, promote, finance, encourage or advocate the establishment of a separate State within the territory of Sri Lanka. Under the said Article, no political party or other association or organization shall have as one of its aims or objects the establishment of a separate State within the territory of Sri Lanka. The Article 157A, among many other things, has clearly laid down the steps that have to be taken against those who violate the constitution including the Members of Parliament (Sri Lanka News Online : 16 December 2010).

LTTE threat on Indian PM bared - The LTTE, which is almost on the verge of a wipe out, is trying to regroup and planning to launch spectacular strikes on high-profile targets like Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi. According to an intelligence input, some cadres of the LTTE, who escaped the wrath of the Sri Lankan Army were trying to regroup in India and planning attacks on top political leaders, particularly when they travel in Tamil Nadu. The security agencies have taken the input seriously as former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by LTTE suicide squad members in the Southern state in 1991. Besides, Prime Minister Singh is also likely to visit Tamil Nadu next month to attend some public functions. “Though LTTE is now a weak force and all top leaders were killed during the Sri Lankan Army’s assault, attempts to regroup by some cadres is a disturbing report,” an official said (Daily News : 16 December 2010).

AN ACTIVE LAND SETTLEMENT POLICY NEEDED - by Don Wijewardana -  Prabhakaran had to rely on the idea of a Tamil kingdom that was purported to have existed in the north to push for Tamil Eelam. And it continues to remain central to some of the current political parties too for obvious reasons: their very survival depends on the claim that attracts votes. The main argument for not disturbing the existing pattern of land settlement in the north hinges on the claimed existence of an ancient Tamil kingdom. But this has been disputed by eminent historians, among them Professor Karthigesu Indrapala of the Jaffna University, Mudliyar C. Rasanayagam, Bernard Gunatillake and a host of others. The available evidence in fact, suggests the contrary. As noted by Prof. S Ranwella if there had been an independent Tamil kingdom in and around the Jaffna peninsula in ancient times, at least a few Tamil inscriptions of those kings who ruled in that kingdom should have come to light in and around the Jaffna peninsula. But so far not a single Tamil inscription, or any other inscription testifying to it has been discovered (LankaWeb : 16 December 2010).

If not for preventive action by Sri Lanka: LTTE could have destabilized region - GL - The LTTE's separatist war in Sri Lanka could easily have destabilized the region. The fact that it did not happen is because of the preventive actions taken by Sri Lanka during and after the war to ensure stability. This is the regional significance of the current situation in Sri Lanka.  In a wide-ranging address on Tuesday night to a representative gathering of journalists, diplomats and INGO and NGO officials at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand in Bangkok, Minister Peiris dwelt on the reasons why the Sri Lankan conflict did not spill over and cause instability in region.  Prof. Peiris who is in Bangkok to attend the Asia-Middle East Dialogue (AMED 111) as a keynote speaker, was speaking on "Sri Lanka: the war and after", said the conflict had the potential to destabilize the region and stressed that countries in Asia should coordinate their policies and actions to ensure that such conflicts do not endanger stability and therefore the economic progress of the region.  No country can deal with such a situation alone and needs regional assistance to maintain a stable status quo, he said.  Prof Peiris pointed out that often in long standing wars as the one against the terrorist LTTE, there is a tendency for the proliferation of small arms and for weapons to find their way into the hands of others not directly involved, as the Cambodian experience for example, has shown. "We saw to it that in the case of Sri Lanka it did not happen," he said.  The proliferation of small arms that could lead to low intensity wars and insurgencies is a matter of concern to sections of the international community. Another crucial outcome was the way in which the Sri Lanka government and its security forces ensured the security of the sea lanes (Daily News : 16 December 2010).

No harm in Sinhalese settling in North & East

Statement on Sri Lanka Regarding Human Rights - by Ira de Silva London, Canada - Mr. M Posner Assistant Secretary for Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labour Washington, D.C. U.S.A. Dear Sir: Reference your statement on Sri Lanka on December 12,2010 it is reported that you have said that the U.S. is continuing to engage with the Sri Lankan Government on the issue of looking at the past. It is further reported that you have stated that there is a very real internal discussion of what your alternatives are and that you ”are aware of some of the humanitarian issues that continue to be of concern, as well as the issues of how to deal with the past”. Regarding issues of “looking at the past” in reference to Sri Lanka, please take into consideration the active role of the U.S. ambassador in Sri Lanka who made it his concern to support the LTTE terrorists even though the LTTE was designated as a terrorist organization by the U.S. Further, provide Sri Lanka with an explanation as to why the U.S. led the so-called international community in it’s effort to save the leadership of the LTTE terrorists in the final stages of a thirty year terrorist war while the U.S. was supposedly leading the world on a war on terrorism. That subject will provide you with an opportnity for some “real internal discussion” with the proponents of that policy. On a broader level, if there is any real “internal discussion”, should the U.S. not look at it’s own past and the U.S. crimes against humanity which has gone on for decades, the serious human rights violations that it has perpetrated on all and sundry for which documentation exits in your own files, the policy being carried out by your own State Department, before it attempts to look at the past in Sri Lanka? It is clearly evident to the world that gross violations of human rights have taken place and are taking place on a daily basis and that the U.S. is taking a lead role. It is also clear that the U.S. was supporting terrorism in Sri Lanka. With evidence mounting of deliberate killings, torture, water boarding being defended by President Bush just recently, what gives the U.S. any moral right to look into “humanitarian issues” in other countries when it is a prime proponent of human rights violations past, present and possibly in the future because to change it’s actions it has first to reform itself (LankaWeb : 15 December 2010).

Patricia Butenis: Hands off Sri Lanka! - by C. Nanda Mathew - In recent weeks, we have read many articles written by citizens of this country in the newspapers concerning the attitude of the U.S. Ambassador in Sri Lanka, Ms Patricia Butenis.  At first she had said that she would co-operate and work closely with the government of Sri Lanka after the conflict was over, but now she has taken a few steps back and has veered away from her former stance. It is high time therefore the Ambassador stops playing around with words and concepts. Terrorism has been totally eradicated from our land and now the issue is really one of unifying the nation and rebuilding the areas that were devastated by the conflict.  It is high time that the Ambassador stops interfering in the island’s internal affairs and accusing the President and his family of Human Rights Violations. She should make this charge against her own President and the US Government for killing innocent civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan.  The recent disclosure of confidential diplomatic cables by Wikileaks and Julian Assange, whether it is legal or illegal, has the US Government in a blind panic.  We should also commend the editorial published by the Daily Island of Monday 18th October 2010 under the caption "Of Human Rights fig Leaves" for the bold revelations it makes. I hope they will publish many more such enlightening articles about the so called defenders of democracy (Island ; 15 December 2010).

LTTE's separatist war could easily have destabilized the region – Prof G.L.Peiris - The LTTE's separatist war in Sri Lanka could easily have destabilized the region. The fact that it did not happen is because of the preventive actions taken by Sri Lanka during and after the war to ensure stability. This is the regional significance of the current situation in Sri Lanka.  In a wide-ranging address on Tuesday night to a representative gathering of journalists, diplomats and INGO and NGO officials at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand in Bangkok, the Minister of External Affairs Prof G.L.Peiris dwelt on the reasons why the Sri Lankan conflict did not spill over and cause instability in region.  Prof. Peiris who is in Bangkok to attend the Asia-Middle East Dialogue (AMED 111) as a keynote speaker, was speaking on "Sri Lanka: the war and after", said the conflict had the potential to destabilize the region and stressed that countries in Asia should coordinate their policies and actions to ensure that such conflicts do not endanger stability and therefore the economic progress of the region.  No country can deal with such a situation alone and needs regional assistance to maintain a stable status quo, he said (Asian Tribune: 16 December 2010).

No harm in Sinhalese settling in N & E - Muralitharan - Karuna before LLRC - Deputy Minister of Resettlement Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan on Monday (Dec 13) said that there was no harm in Sinhalese settling down in the North in the post-war era. Testifying before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), the former LTTE Commander recalled how those Sinhala families were forced leave their homes during the early stage of hostilities.  The National List MP said that many Sinhala families had been engaged in various businesses in the North.  "If they own land there they can always return. If Tamils can buy property in Colombo, Galle or Matara then, why can’t the Sinhalese do the same in the North and the East," he asked.  Responding to a question by the LLRC, the Deputy Minister denied that the government was in the process of changing the ethnic balance in the North and the East. He dismissed unsubstantiated reports of State-sponsored settlements in the two provinces.  The Deputy Minister said Muslims, who had been forced to flee the Northern Province in 1990, could return to their villages. Similarly the Sinhalese, who had lost their homes and businesses in the North, could return there.  Asked whether he had been the Batticaloa leader of the LTTE, at the time the Tigers massacred 600 unarmed policemen in June 1990, the MP said that he was in Jaffna. He alleged the massacre was carried out by LTTE cadres at the behest of LTTE Intelligence Wing leader Pottu Amman.  The Deputy Minister alleged that the UNP never wanted to destroy the LTTE and used the precarious situation for its political advantage.  "The UNP allowed the LTTE to establish camps numbering over 400 after the government and the LTTE signed a CFA in February 2002. We were allowed to carry weapons and that gave us a big advantage," Muralitharan said.  Responding to another question, the Deputy Minister said that the situation was under control, though there had been reports of extortion and abductions taking place in the East even after the war. But there could be isolated incidents, he said.  The Deputy Minister said that families of Muslims massacred in two mosques in Kattankudy over two decades ago should be compensated along with victims of LTTE atrocities.  "There are about 80,000 war widows in the North and the East and a large number of children who have lost either one parent or both due to the war," he said.  Muralidaran alleged that Tamil political parties weren’t doing anything to alleviate the suffering of the war displaced. He went on to blame the TNA and the TMVP for failing to take meaningful measures in support of the affected people.  "They must work together to address the issues of the Tamils," he added.  He told the Commission that visiting other countries to attend peace talks opened his eyes and provided him an opportunity to see people of different ethnicities lived in harmony in those countries and this brought about a change in him.  "The LTTE used innocent civilians as human shields during the last stages of the "Humanitarian Operation" and at least 3000 people lost their lives as a result, he said (Island ; 15 December 2010).

CBI raids office of NGO linked to DMK's Kanimozhi news - Father Gasper has also been the main intermediary between the ousted Sri Lankan terror outfit LTTE and the Tamil Nadu government during the 2009 war in Sri Lanka (Domain B com : 15 December 2010).

LTTE regrouping to attack Indian political leaders, Intel report reveals - Remnants of Sri Lanka's vanquished terrorist outfit Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) are trying to regroup in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and launch attacks on Indian political leaders, Press Trust of India reported.  According to the PTI report, an intelligence input has revealed that the LTTE, still active overseas, is trying to regroup and planning to launch spectacular strikes on high-profile targets like Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi.  Information received from some LTTE cadres, who had escaped the Sri Lankan military offensive that brought an end to the LTTE in Sri Lanka, the Intel report has discovered that the LTTE were planning attacks on top Indian political leaders, particularly when they travel in Tamil Nadu.  "Though LTTE is now a weak force and all top leaders were killed during the Sri Lankan Army's assault, attempts to regroup by some cadres is a disturbing report," an official has told PTI.  Indian security agencies have taken the findings seriously, the report said, adding that the Prime Minister Singh is likely to visit Tamil Nadu next month to attend some public functions.  India is apprehensive of the resurgence of LTTE, which is banned in the country following the suicide attack on the former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in the southern state of Tamil Nadu in 1991 by a female LTTE suicide bomber.  Former LTTE leader turned Sri Lankan Minister, Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan aka colonel Karuna recently said that assassinating former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was a mistake and it turned India against the LTTE.  India declared the LTTE an unlawful association in 1992, a year after Gandhi's assassination and since then has extended the ban every two years.  The Union Home Ministry extended the ban in May 2010 saying that despite its decimation in Sri Lanka, LTTE was re-grouping in Tamil Nadu and its cadres remaining in India, especially in the southern Tamil Nadu state, could use the state as a rear base to resurface (Colombo page : 15 December 2010).

LTTE plans to attack Singh - The Indian Intelligence Bureau has issued alert this evening that LTTE is planning to assassinate Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Indian media reports said.  The LTTE, which is almost on the verge of a wipe out, is trying to regroup and planning to launch spectacular strikes on high-profile targets like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi.  According to an intelligence input, some cadres of the LTTE, who escaped the wrath of the Sri Lankan Army during the all-out operations in the island nation earlier this year, were trying to regroup in India and planning attacks on top political leaders, particularly when they travel in Tamil Nadu.  The security agencies have taken the input seriously as former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by LTTE suicide squad members in the southern state in 1991.  Besides, Prime Minister Singh is also likely to visit Tamil Nadu next month to attend some public functions.  "Though LTTE is now a weak force and all top leaders were killed during the Sri Lankan Army's assault, attempts to regroup by some cadres is a disturbing report," an official said.  LTTE is a defeated force in Sri Lanka today after the death of Prabhakaran but some of the disgruntled elements of the decimated organization wants to avenge their killing. They think that Indian government silence during Sri Lankan government attack on them is responsible for their present plight (Daily Mirror : 15 December 2010).

Demo by Lankans in Italy in front of British HC today - Sri Lankans living in Italy have organised a massive demonstration in Rome on Thursday, December 16, at 2.00 p.m. in front of the British Embassy, calling on the British Government to use the same standards towards the LTTE as it does towards all terrorist organizations banned in Europe and Britain. A spokesman for the Sri Lankan Associations in Italy states that what happened when President Mahinda Rajapaksa visited the UK shows the dubious standards adopted by the British Govt. in the name of democracy and freedom of speech.  The British Govt. would never permit members of Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Hamas or terrorist Turkish organizations to demonstrate at the airport if the Israeli President or PM visited the country. They would use all possible force to prevent the holding of such demonstrations, arrest the demonstrators and imprison them, he said. Therefore, when the President visited the UK, the British Government per se approved the visit. Though the President was not on a State visit, the Government should not have bent down to a terrorist organization, permitting them to wave Tiger flags and insignia, and display the picture of Prabhakaran, he said. Thereafter, the British Govt. refused to permit an additional number of police to protect the President who was delivering his speech at the Oxford Union, he said (Island : 15 December 2010).

Lanka thwarted LTTE attempt to destabilise region - GL - The LTTE’s separatist war in Sri Lanka could easily have destabilized the region. The fact that it did not happen is because of the preventive actions taken by Sri Lanka during and after the war to ensure stability. This is the regional significance of the current situation in Sri Lanka.  In a wide-ranging address, on Tuesday night, to a representative gathering of journalists, diplomats and INGO and NGO officials at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand in Bangkok, the Minister of External Affairs Prof G.L.Peiris dwelt on the reasons why the Sri Lankan conflict did not spill over and cause instability in the region.  Prof. Peiris who is in Bangkok to attend the Asia-Middle East Dialogue (AMED 111) as a keynote speaker, was speaking on "Sri Lanka: the war and after", said the conflict had the potential to destabilize the region and stressed that countries in Asia should coordinate their policies and actions to ensure that such conflicts do not endanger stability and therefore the economic progress of the region.  No country can deal with such a situation alone and needs regional assistance to maintain a stable status quo, he said.  Prof Peiris pointed out that often in long standing wars as the one against the terrorist LTTE, there is a tendency for the proliferation of small arms and for weapons to find their way into the hands of others not directly involved, as the Cambodian experience for example, has shown. "We saw to it that in the case of Sri Lanka it did not happen," he said (Island ; 15 December 2010).

LTTE targets PM and Home Minister:IB - In a breaking news on Wednesday evening Intelligence Bureau (IB) has issued alert that LTTE is planning to assassinate Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.  The LTTE, which is almost on the verge of a wipe out, is trying to regroup and planning to launch spectacular strikes on high-profile targets like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi.  According to an intelligence input, some cadres of the LTTE, who escaped the wrath of the Sri Lankan Army during the all-out operations in the island nation earlier this year, were trying to regroup in India and planning attacks on top political leaders, particularly when they travel in Tamil Nadu. The security agencies have taken the input seriously as former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by LTTE suicide squad members in the southern state in 1991. Besides, Prime Minister Singh is also likely to visit Tamil Nadu next month to attend some public functions. "Though LTTE is now a weak force and all top leaders were killed during the Sri Lankan Army's assault, attempts to regroup by some cadres is a disturbing report," an official said. LTTE is a defeated force in Sri Lanka today after the death of Prabhakaran but some of the disgruntled elements of the decimated organization wants to avenge their killing. They think that Indian government silence during Sri Lankan government attack on them is responsible for their present plight (Samay live : 15 December 2010).

Karuna says ..... Norwegian funds used for LTTE arms Provincial Councils do not need police powers

Norwegian funds used for LTTE arms: Provincial Councils do not need police powers – Karuna - LTTE cannot be revived and former Tigers will never want to join a terrorist outfilt of that nature and undergo suffering; they have suffered enough, Deputy Minister Muralitharan says.  Resettlement Deputy Minister Vinayagamoorty Muralitharan, better known as Karuna, giving evidence before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission yesterday said that the type of political solution that he would advocated was one which was acceptable to the majority community and guaranteed the security of Tamils. Responding to questions, Muralitharan told the Commission that in a small country like Sri Lanka, Police powers need not be devolved to provincial councils and it was an unreasonable demand. "But we will have to devolve power through the provincial councils to the North and the East," he said. "The UNP never made a sincere effort to end the war and successive governments made no attempt to nip the LTTE in the bud; nor did the international community" he said. Although some countries had banned the LTTE, they allowed its leaders to operate on their soil, he charged. He was optimistic that the LTTE could not be revived and that the former LTTE cadres would never want to join a terrorist outfit of the nature of the Tigers as they had suffered enough and more. The rehabilitated LTTE cadres were fully occupied and they were living peacefully, Muralitharan said. People in the Wanni were yearning for peace and would not want to have another war as they had gone through untold suffering," he said. Muralitharan said the slain LTTE leader Prabhakaran had been solely responsible for theLTTE’s debacle as he didn’t heed anyone’s advice and acted on his own accord where crucial matters were concerned and eventually thousands of people had to pay with their life and limb. "Many in the LTTE were unhappy with Prabhakaran and he thought he was a ‘duke’ and didn’t heed the advice given by others," he said. "Prabhakaran discriminated against the Eastern cadres and I left the Wanni with 6,000 cadres as I knew that we were just sitting ducks," the former LTTE military commander said. He said that former LTTE spokesman Anton Balasingham was a cunning man and good diplomat. Responding to a question whether Former Norwegian facilitator Eric Solheim had given money to the LTTE to purchase arms, he said that Norway had given money to the Tigers during the peace talks and it had been used to purchase arms for the outfit (Island : 13 December 2010).

RCMP reportedly set to charge suspected migrant smugglers - by Stewart Bell, National Post - The RCMP is preparing to lay charges against several alleged migrant smugglers who helped bring 76 Sri Lankans to the British Columbia coast last fall, according to two sources briefed on the investigation. The sources said the pending criminal charges concern suspected organizers of the voyage of the Ocean Lady, which was intercepted in Canadian waters on Oct. 17, 2009, after crossing from Malaysia.  “Until charges come out, we don’t talk about things like that,” Constable Michael McLaughlin, an RCMP spokesman in B.C., said on Monday. He denied charges were close. “Charges are not imminent.”  But one source said that during a recent briefing a senior RCMP officer said the case had already been sent to Crown prosecutors, who reviewed it and sent it back to police for follow-up work. Another source said charges were expected sometime around Christmas. The charges would be the first to result from intensive Canadian police investigations that are probing the smugglers suspected of ferrying 568 Sri Lankan migrants across the Pacific aboard two frail cargo ships.  In addition to the Ocean Lady, the RCMP has been investigating those suspected of playing a role in the voyage of the Sun Sea, which arrived off Vancouver Island on Aug. 12 after carrying 492 Sri Lankans from Thailand.  A Thai official told the National Post that Thailand had arrested a Canadian citizen, who was then “handed over” to Canadian authorities. The official did not want to be named and said the case was considered classified and active.  An RCMP spokesman declined to confirm whether the Toronto-area, Sri Lankan-born businessman named by the Thais was a suspect in the Sun Sea investigation.  “Only in the event that an investigation results in the laying of criminal charges would the RCMP confirm the nature of the charges laid and the identity of the individual(s) involved,” said RCMP spokesman Sgt. Marc LaPorte (National Post in Canada : 13 December 2010).

Indian Foreign Minister’s reference to ‘meaningful devolution’ - By Neville Ladduwahetty - During his recent visit to Sri Lanka, India’s Foreign Minister S.M.Krishna reiterated the words of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (as referred to in the June 2010 joint statement) calling for "meaningful devolution". Since the joint statement had not elaborated on the form and substance of devolution that would make it meaningful, Mr. Krishnan is reported to have stated during his visit to Jaffna that devolution should be "based on the 13th Amendment to Sri Lanka’s Constitution" (The Sunday Times, November 28, 2010). Devolution as a power sharing arrangement has a different appeal to different people. Their appeals could be categorized into four groups. The first group is opposed to devolution in any form. The second group that includes the Tamil community, devolution based on the 13th Amendment (13A) has limited appeal. They are for 13A plus. These two extreme positions represent the opinions of most. Between these two extremes are other groups. To a third group devolution based on 13A is acceptable, while a fourth group is for 13A minus. Two conclusions could be drawn from this broad diversity of opinion: a) that devolution "based on the 13A" that Mr. Krishna referred to would appeal only to a marginal few, and b) that it has no appeal to the Tamil community. Therefore, devolution based on 13A would not have much meaning to most in Sri Lanka, least of all to the Tamil community (Island : 13 December 2010).

What the Tigers failed to get by the bullet the TNA is now trying to achieve by hypocrisy and deceitful means - by Dr Sudath Gunasekara - D.B.S.Jeyaraj writing to dbsjeyaraj.com on December 10th, 2010 under the caption ‘President Rajapaksa initiates political dialogue with TNA’ has revealed the following information. He says that there had been preliminary discussions in this regard between two representatives of the government and the TNA and they had made commendable progress in most respects. Thereafter there was a discussion between the President and Sampanthan in Colombo attended by Prof G.L.Peiris. According to his column some of the salient points on which preliminary agreement was reached at these discussions were as follows (LankaWeb : 13 December 2010).

Karuna is scheduled to give submissions at the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) on 13 December.

Karuna at LLRC - Deputy Minister of Resettlement Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman is scheduled to give submissions at the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) tomorrow (13). Muralitharan had been involved in the country’s 30-year war as a militant and as a politician. He was a key member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) since 1983 till breaking away from the organisation in April 2004 (The Nation : 12 December 2010).

Amidst calls for ‘war crimes’probe Lanka welcomes presence of Big Five in C’bo December - An international naval gathering in Colombo, including senior representatives of the UN Security Council couldn’t have come at a better time for Sri Lanka, says Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.  In an interview with The Island on Sunday (Dec. 12), Defence Secretary Rajapaksa said that their presence at the SLN’s 60th anniversary celebrations had meant international recognition and appreciation of Sri Lanka’s victory over the LTTE.  The Defence Secretary said of the five permanent Security Council members, Russia (Udaloy-class Destroyer Admiral Vinogrado) and China (Missile Destroyer Lanzhou) had sent warships. The US, UK and France, too, had sent senior-level naval delegations, the Defence Secretary said, adding "the country wouldn’t have attracted the ‘big’ five if we had still been at war. In fact, many countries would have been reluctant to send warships had we been bogged down on the northern front."  The LTTE collapsed on May 19, last year on the banks of the Nanthikadal lagoon after a three-year-long non-stop combined security forces offensive.  The Defence Secretary said the world had expressed solidarity with Sri Lanka amidst a treacherous bid to charge the political and military leadership with war crimes over the conduct of the SLA during the last phase of the offensive. Responding to a query, the former Gajaba veteran said that their participation would never have been possible without approval at the highest level of the respective governments.  India sent its Navy Chief Admiral Nirmal Warma, though Indian service chiefs never visit the same country twice in one year. Appreciating the India Navy Chief’s presence, the Defence Secretary said that the attendance of the Pakistani Navy Chief Admiral Noman Bashir was an honour (Island ; 12 December 2010).

No room left for terrorism to raise head - Gota - Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said on Saturday that there was no room for terrorism to raise its head in the country.  Addressing a passing out parade at the Maduru Oya Special Forces Training School, the Defence Secretary said that every precautionary measure has been taken by the security forces to prevent such a scenario.  Saturday’s passing out parade saw 11 officers and 443 soldiers passing out, which is reportedly the highest number to pass out in 25 years.  The Defence Secretary said the main responsibility of the three forces is to protect and maintain the peace achieved by the three forces by successfully eliminating the three-decade-long LTTE terrorism. The next important responsibility of the security forces is to protect the country’s sovereignty and independence, he said.  Rajapaksa said in the last five years the people of this country have sacrificed a lot to eliminate terrorism. During the last four years the strength of the three forces had been increased three fold. More funds were allocated for this purpose. The Defence Secretary also stated more funds were allocated for national security in the 2011 budget. Through this allocation the security forces are vested with more responsibilities to serve the people of this country. He also insisted that it is important to protect the peaceful atmosphere (Island : 12 December 2010).

Forty ex-LTTE cadres qualify for Universities - Rehabilitation Commissioner General Brigadier Sudantha Ranasinghe said about 40 former LTTE cadres, who sat the GCE (A/L) last August, would qualify for university entrance according to their Z – score marks. "Of them, two students obtained 1A, 2Cs and 2Bs, 1C from the Kilinochchi District. They would be selected for medical faculties," Brig. Ranasinghe told The Island. He said that over 351 ex – LTTE cadres, who were not of school going age, had studied at two specially designed schools in Vavuniya and 10 former child soldiers had studied at Hindu College Ratmalana. They sat for the examination."Out of 361, 211 students obtained passes in all three subjects," Ranasinghe said. Of them four students sat for the examination in the Mathematics stream, five from the Bio Science stream, 34 in Commerce and the others from the Arts stream. Those students would be considered from the Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu Districts. They were released after rehabilitation and now live in their respective districts. According to the Z – score of those two districts they could enter the universities, Brig. Ranasinghe said. He said that LTTE forcibly recruited those students and they sacrificed their education to fulfill the needs of the terrorist organization. "We identified 594 as students among those who were gathered at the government run rehabilitation camps last year," he said. The Brigadier said 170 former cadres, including 45 females will also sit for GCE (O/L) exam which is to commence today (Island ; 12 December 2010).

Mr Ban-Ki Moon,”UN Panel” and War Crimes - by Dr Bandula Kothalawala London N7 - According to some news reports, Mr Ban-Ki Moon’s “Panel” is expected to submit its Report to him some time early next year. As many contributors to this Forum have rightly pointed out, Mr Ban-Ki Moon’s manoeuvres in this regard are fundamentally flawed, procedurally incorrect and profoundly unjust vis-à-vis a long-standing member of the UN family. This article looks at the appointment of the “Panel”, comments on the terms of reference and some other issues involved and concludes that the Government of Sri Lanka should take no notice of its advice to the UN Secretary-General (LankaWeb ; 12 December 2010).

IDP students to sit GCE O/L exam - Internally displaced students from the North are eagerly waiting to sit the G.C.E. (O/L) examination which commences tomorrow, Northern Province Education Ministry Secretary Ilangowan said.  Eventhough some are internally displaced they are sitting the examination to brighten their future following the restoration of peace and prosperity in the region, he said.  Two thousand five hundred and ninety eight internally displaced students in the Northern Province are due to sit the examination this year.  He said that 22,608 students will sit the G.C.E. (O/L) examination in the province.  Apart from the 2,598 internally displaced students, 20,016 other students will also sit the examination in their schools, the Secretary said.  He said that all arrangements have been finalised for the internally displaced students to sit the examination in their schools (Sunday Observer : 12 December 2010).

Moderate Tamil opinion favourable to ethnic harmony - Minister Rajitha Senaratne - The Government’s allegation against UNP MP Jayalath Jayawardene’s participation in an anti-Sri Lankan protest in London and UNP MP Karu Jayasuriya’s controversial statement to a weekly English newspaper on the alleged war crime charges have created a controversy in the political arena. The Sunday Observer interviewed Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne to ascertain the Government’s stance on these two issues. Dr. Senaratne said sometimes there is no difference between the utterances made by the Eelam lobby and those by some UNP MPs. It looks like the same jokers in the same card-pack with different colours. However, the Minister made clear the Government’s utmost commitment to have discussions with the moderate Tamil diaspora to bring a political solution (Sunday Observer : 12 December 2010).

Tiger flags in London: Lanka protests to Britain - Sri Lanka will officially protest to Britain over the display of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) flag by protestors who demonstrated against President Mahinda Rajapaksa in London recently. The Sri Lankan High Commission in London has sought an appointment with officials of the British Foreign Office to lodge the official complaint on the basis that the LTTE is a banned organisation in Britain. A Foreign Ministry spokesman in Colombo told the Sunday Times that Sri Lanka’s Acting High Commissioner P .M. Amza had sought the appointment. Supporters of Tamil groups on at least two occasions displayed the LTTE flags when the President was in London. The first was when the President arrived at the Heathrow airport and thereafter at the Dorchester Hotel where the President was staying. In terms of the British anti-terrorism law, under which the LTTE was banned, the display of symbols of a banned organization is prohibited. However the British Police present at both occasions ignored the violation of the law. A British High Commission Spokesman said, ‘The LTTE remains a proscribed terrorist organization in Britain. The policing of demonstrations is a matter for the Police. The Police take seriously and investigate allegations of support for terrorist activities”. However there were no attempts by the Police to arrest or prevent persons displaying the LTTE flags in public at the airport or close to the hotel (Sunday Times : 12 December 2010).

Menon says ready to help, but won’t interfere: India calls for home-grown solution for Sri Lanka No room for terror outfits to use Indian soil: - India’s National Security Adviser (NSA), Shiv Shankar Menon said that Sri Lanka should have its own home-grown solutions for the problems of its people in the North and the East and that other parties elsewhere including in Tamil Nadu should not worry if those people are happy.  In an exclusive meeting with a high-profile team of media heads from Sri Lanka at his office at the Ministry of Defence in New Delhi, Menon said India would never meddle with Sri Lanka’s internal matters and it is up to Sri Lanka to decide on the best solution to meet the aspirations of its people.  Following are excerpts from the meeting Sri Lanka’s media heads, including chief editors of national newspapers, had with the defence expert of the world’s largest democracy (Sunday Observer ; 12 December 2010).

Moderate Tamil opinion favourable to ethnic harmony

Norway – the Tiger bastion of anti-Sri Lankan politics - by H. L. D. Mahindapala - The Vadukoddai War declared on May 14, 1976 is not yet over.  The Vadukoddai Resolution which laid the foundations for the Vadukoddai War opened up two fronts: 1. the military front on the ground where the Tamil youth were asked to take up arms and never “flinch” until they reach Eelam and 2 the ideological front encapsulated in the Vadukoddai Resolution which is still exploding at selected flash points.  The first front on the ground was defeated comprehensively at Nandikadal on May 18, 2010. The second front – the ideological front – is still alive and kicking globally. It is yet to be defeated. It exploded in full force at Oxford. Another part of this front has set up the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) with its self-appointed “prime minister”, Visvananthan. Rudrakumaran, USA, in a Cabinet of eleven, including three deputy prime ministers located in Australia, Europe and Canada.  Yet another part of this front is in Norway headed by Nediyawan who works hand in glove with Fr. S. Emmanuel, former Vicar General of the Catholic Church in Jaffna, now residing in Germany. There is also the “KP” group headed by Pathmanathan, the arms procurer for the LTTE. But this group has joined the government and is working closely with the Ministry of Defence in Sri Lanka (LankaWeb : 11 December 2010).

The BIG Diaspora hoax: Money raised in UK on pretext of charging MR for war crimes Diaspora activists involved in fund raising operation - London-based sources say the British Tamil Forum (BTF) and the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) had launched protests in the UK targeting President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s visit primarily to raise funds, in the backdrop of dwindling financial support for their sordid operations. Sources told The Sunday Island, that the vengeful anti-Rajapaksa campaign had been nothing but a ruse to collect money from the gullible Tamil Diaspora. The ill-advised President’s visit had helped the BTF and GTF to influence Diaspora to donate lavishly to their coffers, sources said, adding it could be the single most successful fund raising campaign. Protests forced the Oxford Union to unilaterally cancel President Rajapaksa’s speech scheduled for Dec. 2. The President’s visit couldn’t have come at a better time, sources said. Responding to a query, sources said that the BTF and the GTF had been looking for an opportunity to mount a major fund raising operation after the much talked about LTTE Heroes Day (Maveerra Naall ) jointly organized by them on Nov. 27 failed to attract the Diaspora in sufficient numbers. The two Diaspora organizations had spent about 150,000 Sterling Pounds to organize the event believing it could a double return, sources said. Although pro-LTTE media claimed of a crowd of over 50,000 at the event, there had been only about 10,000 -11,000 people, sources said. Over the years, Diaspora organizations had cleverly used the event to raise funds needed to uire arms, ammunition and equipment, though that wasn’t possible now. Unlike in previous years, the organizers had failed to convince the Tamils to buy flowers, food and calendars to raise money, sources said (Island : 11 December 2010).

Parliamentarian Prabha Ganeshan says Tamil Diaspora cannot solve the problem of the Tamil community in Sri Lanka - Leader of the Democratic Peoples Congress Parliamentarian Prabha Ganeshan says Tamil Diaspora cannot solve the problem of the Tamil community in Sri Lanka. They have been leading luxurious lives in foreign countries. They are unable to understand the real problems face by the common Tamil people in Sri Lanka. Anti-Sri Lankan and pro-LTTE activities organised by Tamil Diaspora in abroad lead to further increase the sufferings of Tamil community here. The parliamentarian vehemently criticized the Tamil Diaspora for their attempt to sabotage of President’s lecture at the Oxford Union in Britain. The government has taken a number of measures for the welfare of the Tamils in Sri Lanka. Over 90 percent of the IDP families have been resettled in their original abodes at present. The government is further committed to look into the problems of the Tamils without any discrimination. Mr. Prabha Ganesha further says that fraternity between the Sinhala and Tamil communities should be enhanced to establish long lasting ethnic harmony in Sri Lanka (SLBC : 10 December 2010).

The Tamil leadership solely responsible for what happened to the Tamil people

Full text of submission to LLRC by Mr.H.L.D.Mahindapala

Cancellation of President's Oxford Union speech: West stands exposed Democratic values compromised: The cancellation of President Mahinda Rajapaksa's proposed address to the Oxford Union exposed the double standards adopted by certain powerful States, which speak of five star democracy and freedom of speech, Mass Media and Information Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said. The Minister said that the cancellation went against the core values of Oxford and the UK, which believed in the freedom of speech and the articulation of differing views on its soil. He questioned whether it was acceptable for a speaker, that too a Head of State of a commonwealth member nation, to be silenced in a country that enjoys the freedom of speech. The Minister said that indications were that the Oxford Union was subjected to pressure to arrive at the decision. He pointed out that the LTTE was a listed terrorist organization in UK. Responding to questions from the media during a meeting to announce the weekly Cabinet decisions yesterday, he said President Rajapaksa's intentions as the Head of State of the country was to outline Sri Lanka's future plans during his speech. He observed that the Oxford Union and the Thames Valley Police who were responsible for security during the event should have taken adequate measures in this regard and added that it was unfortunate to note that they could not handle a protest which was expected to be participated by only around 3,000 people. In contrast Sri Lanka had always provided adequate security and facilitated the needs of all visiting Heads of States and other delegates irrespective of any differences. “We are proud of this fact” he added. He also said that certain adverse comments being made by some Opposition politicians in this regard, were being rejected and discarded by the people with disgust. Commenting on certain statements made by some local Opposition elements, he noted that these unpatriotic elements were trying to demean the value of the country’s victory over terrorism and were attempting to retard and hinder future development of the country (Daily News : 10 December 2010).

Oxford fiasco: Govt. blames Britain - Sri Lanka must be given an explanation by the Oxford Union on its unilateral cancellation of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s December 2 Oxford Union speech, Cabinet spokesman and Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said yesterday.  He said the President would consider addressing the OU again should he be invited to do so on another date.  The minister told the weekly cabinet briefing the entire episode displayed the weakness and inability of the British government to correctly evaluate the situation.  “President Rajapaksa accepted the invitation as the President of Sri Lanka and it is the responsibility of the British government to afford adequate security fit for a head of state. It has not done that. The Thames Valley Police and the Oxford Union have also failed to assess the situation and succumbed to the pressure exerted by some 400 odd LTTE sympathizers,” he charged. The minister said the LTTE had been listed as a terrorist organization in that country and all activities carried out by the LTTE and its sympathizers had been banned. “Therefore, it is not only wrong but against the law that the British Police and the Oxford Union failed to go ahead with the programme that included President Rajapaksa’s speech,” the minister said. “It is hilarious and surprising to think that this happened in a so called five-star democracy. The Oxford University is a highly respected and world renowned seat of education. The incident is a scar on the Oxford Union and the British government.” The minister recalled that Sri Lanka has provided maximum security to all heads of state who have visited Sri Lanka and added that President Rajapaksa went to Britain not only as a President of Sri Lanka but as a head of state of a Commonwealth country. Neither the Thames Valley Police nor the British government could get away from the blame for their failure to give adequate security to President Rajapaksa and to his entourage by saying it was a personal trip, the minister said (Daily Mirror : 10 December 2010).

Tiger flags in London: Sri Lanka protests to Britain

The Tamil leadership solely responsible for what happened to the Tamil people - Full text of submission to LLRC by Mr.H.L.D.Mahindapala - Mr. Chairman and distinguished members of the Commission, I am honoured and privileged to be invited to give evidence before this Commission on the historic and epic events of our time and I thank the Commission for giving me this opportunity. Before I go any further I must congratulate the Commission for the progress made so far, particularly in giving the lie to its critics who dismissed it as not being credible as that of an international inquiry. The impressive and credible proceedings of this commission have once again debunked the cynical attitude common to some Sri Lankans who believe that the local products are never so good as the imported goods and services. I cannot see how three foreign gentlemen, sitting in far away New York , with a pre-determined attitude towards Sri Lanka , can investigate and report on the conditions in Sri Lanka based on accounts presented by questionable sources which have a notorious record of reporting adversely and negatively on Sri Lanka . It is predictable that the UN Panel appointed by the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, — knowing particularly the attitude problem of the UN panellists – will merely rubber stamp the prevailing judgment of the West denigrating the greatest historical movement in the living memory of Sri Lankans.I wish to state categorically that the World alliance for Peace, which I represent, has implicit trust and faith in the integrity and the capabilities of the distinguished Commissioners to fulfil their mandate with honour. May I, therefore, begin by congratulating the Commission for its outstanding performance as yet another successful endeavour in telling the critics and the doubting Thomases that we can – yes, we can – handle our problems on our own, in our own way, without meddlesome foreigners trying to teach grandmothers how to suck eggs. The irony in all this is that these foreigners are preaching and imposing universal moral standards on us on the dubious principle that we must do what they say and not what they do.Mr. Chairman and distinguished members of the Panel we value and appreciate the advances you have made so far and we trust and hope that you will continue to do so to serve the nation which is in need of guidance to achieve the laudable and ultimate goal of reconciliation (Read the full text in Sri Lanka News Online : 9 December 2010).

Sri Lanka: West trying other options to ‘punish’ Sri Lankans - In an apparent bid to cover-up the ‘naked’ diplomatic tactics and blunders of the United States and other Western countries, (as verily exposed by Wikileaks) the international community is exploring other ‘plausible’ ways and means to ‘punish’ Sri Lankans and heir government. The Asian Tribune its exclusive article-“Universal Jurisdiction Bill to be Amended in Britain” (http://www.asiantribune.com/news/2010/12/04/universal-jurisdiction-bill-... ) exposed some of the ‘naked’ tactics of United Kingdom, a supposedly ‘developed’ country, that engaged in a most degrading diplomatic gimmick of cancelling an address by an Asian head of state in a British university (Asian Tribune ; 9 December 2010).

Rambukwalle regrets Britains inability to control LTTE demo against Mahinda - President Mahinda Rajapaksa proceeded to U.K. on the invitation the Oxford Union, as it was one of the world renowned educational institutions and it was regrettable that Britain,with its claim to a five star democracy and denouncing terrorism world over ,was unable to control the activities of around 4,000 terrorist elements in that country,who were behaving like thugs and hooligans.It was the intention of the President to announce future plans for Sri Lanka,Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwalle said yesterday. Addressing the cabinet press briefing in Colombo yesterday, he said that the President’s visit was originally scheduled for last month and due to the functions related to the second Swearing-in Ceremony, it was postponed to this month. He, denounced Dr. Wickremabahu Karunaratne for allegedly saying in London that over 100,000 people were killed by the Sri Lankan security forces during the last few days of the war, and painting a gruesome picture of the security forces,who had sacrificed their life and limb to liberate the country and save the nation from the LTTE. Referring to the cancellation of the Oxford Union lecture, Rambukwalle said that it was a unilateral decision taken by the 19 year old President of the Union,James Kingston due to pressure exerted by the LTTE. He, said that the same person had allowed the Israeli Defence Minister to deliver a lecture. He, said that that unlike the double standards of the western nations, especially Britain, Sri Lanka allowed foreign delegates to visit the country during the last stages of the war .They were even allowed to hold press conferences and express their opinions freely. Rambukwalle,queried if Britain would allow organisations like Al Qaida to hold demonstrations similar to the one held by the remnants of the LTTE (Island : 9 December 2010).

The Plot Thickens as Diaspora Funds Reach Colombo - by Dilrook Kannangara Adversity makes strange bedfellows – proverb - Rienzi Algama was an ardent UNP supporter from Wattala. However, he was not a fool to commit harakiri over a bankrupt political party. Manipulating his love for the party, a certain well known person orchestrated a Tamil Nadu style self immolation right in front of the UNP head quarters in Pita Kotte. Soon after he succumbed to his injuries, Karu Jayasuriya publicly stated that his dying wish was the UNP leaders don’t fight each other for the top post. This was when the young popular prince from the south was staging a spirited attempt to grab power from the current impotent UNP leadership. Using sympathy and other rubbish that outpoured following the first ever self immolation over politics in the country, the impotent leader managed to save his inherited post. UNP convention is planned to be held on the 12th December. It is likely that a group of UNPers would challenge the leadership. The old loser who is clinging into a ceremonial post in the party has been tasked with the difficult task of saving the leadership by whatever means. He is only doing his job to save his very own position in the party just a week to the convention. He has done it before and he is doing it again. However, an unseen calamity fell upon the camp of the country’s longest standing opposition leader within the UNP. His ardent supporter and ideological partner, Jayalath Jayawardena landed in hot water over his open support for the LTTE for the umpteenth time. Without him the Ranil camp cannot sustain the formidable challenge posed by the younger camp. Saving him is another aim of Jayasuriya (LankaWeb : 9 December 2010).

Wikileaks: SL denies NK arms charge - A senior military official said there had been no transactions with North Korea - Sri Lanka says the country never purchased any arms, ammunition and equipment from North Korea during the war against the LTTE.  A senior official involved in procurement of arms on Thursday (Dec. 9) told The Island that there hadn’t been any transactions with NK for a long time.  He was responding to information in diplomatic cables leaked by Wikileaks of US diplomatic protests about North Korea’s alleged sale of rocket-propelled launchers to Sri Lanka in early 2009.  The official pointed out that the international media may have wrongly reported that Sri Lanka was acquiring arms from NK, whereas the actual beneficiary of such arms sales could have been the LTTE.  Alleging possible NK support for the JVP-led 1971 insurgency, Sri Lanka broke-off diplomatic ties with that country.  Military sources say that Sri Lanka hadn’t purchased any major items even from South Korea except some Fast Attack Craft (FACs) acquired in the 80s during the JRJ administration.  Authoritative sources told The Island that the leaked US cables, which had been the basis for media speculation on Sri Lanka receiving NK arms, could have dealt with the LTTE procuring arms from China and transferring them overland through NK to be loaded into LTTE ships.  The Sri Lanka Navy destroyed eight LTTE ships (one in Sept. 2006 and seven in 2007). Of the eight ships, destruction of four, including the largest ‘floating arsenal’ was made possible by the US intelligence.  President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s government went to the extent of raising the issue with China, which led to tighter monitoring of armaments sales. Sources said that it had a disastrous impact on Sri Lanka’s legitimate purchases from China (Island ; 9 December 2010).

LTTE executed 60 soldiers held by them - PM - Prime Minister DM Jayratne said in Parliament yesterday that four hardcore LTTE cadres arrested in Vavuniya recently have confessed that 60 soldiers who were held in LTTE custody were executed by them during the last days of the humanitarian operation. The Prime Minister speaking at the committee stage debate said that the soldiers had been shot dead and their bodies burnt by the terrorists. The premier further said that the Government has rehabilitated thousands of LTTE cadres who surrendered and found them employment and even arranged for their weddings. He said the mass graves of the soldiers have been found and hence it has been proven the LTTE carried out executions of prisoners of war (Daily News ; 9 December 2010).

Thai police arrest Lankan migrants - Thai authorities said yesterday they had arrested 45 migrants from Sri Lanka in the latest of a series of crackdowns in recent months. The Sri Lankans, who were rounded up at a crowded apartment in a Bangkok suburb, appear to be economic migrants hoping to travel to a third country, said Police Major General Manu Mekmok, of Thailand's Immigration Bureau. "They either overstayed their visas or entered illegally," he said. In October Thai authorities detained more than 200 Tamil migrants from Sri Lanka in two separate operations, but they later released some who were able to present valid travel documents (Daily News : 9 December 2010).

Sathosa to build hotel in Jaffna - Lanka Sathosa Limited is planning to construct a 3-star hotel in Jaffna in a joint venture with the Building Materials Corporation (BMC) next year (2011) and also propose to expand the local purchase of green gram, cowpea and big onions. They also hope to set up 100 Lanka Sathosa outlets and 25 mega super markets, in the peninsula. Lanka Sathosa opened 70 outlets in the country between January and September this year (2010) and earned a revenue of over Rs. 9 billion during this period. The gross profit was Rs.794,525,316 with the profit before tax being Rs. 34,538,760. Four Coop City outlets have been approved, while 29 Mini Coop City outlets were opened and 34 more submitted for approval. Co-operative Societies are to be established at the Rajarata and Ruhuna Universities and also in 250 schools next year (Island ; 8 December 2010).

Has UK become vulnerable to the machinations of LTTE rump ?

Has UK become vulnerable to machinations of LTTE remnants? - Faizer Mustapha Sri Lankans are amazed by the fact that the Oxford Union which was described by former British Prime Minister late Harold McMillan, as 'the last bastion of free speech' surrendered its independence to a mob of domiciled terrorists and cancelled a lecture scheduled to be delivered by President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Environment Deputy Minister Faizer Mustapha said issuing a press release. It said: The ability of a handful of terrorists to hold the prestigious Oxford University community to ransom and bring the British polity into disgrace, startles right minded persons who uphold the values of democracy. The Oxford Union which is 186 years has had, among its alumni twelve British Prime Ministers.  Its guest speakers over the years include a glittering array of global personalities who had excelled in diverse fields from politics to science, arts, sports and many other fields.  Among the many politicians who have addressed the Union is Sinn Fen's Gerry Adams who spoke on the Ireland issue which was then a highly controversial subject in British politics.  There was no such uproar against him and the British demonstrated their commitment to defend the right to free speech. The denial of that right to a Head of State who arrived in the UK on an invitation by a hallowed institution, projects a paradigm shift.  Has the culture changed now or does the vulnerability of British citizenry and the political machinery at the hands of an alien group of terrorists and their lackeys masquerading as British subjects been exposed?  What is disturbing is that the LTTE remnants and supporters numbering about three hundred who demonstrated against the arrival of President Mahinda Rajapaksa in the UK brazenly carried flags depicting the LTTE logo in open violation of the laws of Britain which proscribed them as a terrorist organization. It is a sad situation that such a miniscule group had been able to silence the voice of the British citizenry. This is a dangerous trend casting shadows of a potential threat to democracy in Britain. The release said: As Sri Lankans, we condemn the denial of the freedom of expression to our President who is the only statesman in the world having vanquished a terrorist group. Western countries who claim to wage a so-called war on terrorism should remember that the LTTE was the most ruthless terrorist organization (Daily News : 8 December 2010).

World Heritage List : N-East religious sites to be nominated - Steps will be taken to nominate certain historical multi religious sites in the North and East regions into the world Heritage List, National Heritage Minister Dr Jagath Balasuriya said. He expressed this view after considering the report submitted by the Expert Committee of Archaeologists appointed to evaluate the archaeological sites in the country. He further said all archaeological sites in the country will be preserved particularly in the North and East where archaeological sites were neglected due to the prolonged war. "Excavations are in progress to unearth sites buried centuries ago," he said. The Committee pointed out to the Minister that world attention would be focused on these sites if we could nominate them to the world heritage list. The historical, religious and cultural significances of these sites will acquire the prominent attention among the world community. According to the Committee, efforts will be made to renovate all the sites on a large-scale and excavations will be started soon to unearth the historical sites in the North and East. The Minister instructed the committee to prepare the report with comprehensive details on the importance of these ancient multi religious centres that enhanced the ethnic harmony in the past. If the report is prepared well it can be forwarded to the Cabinet for approval, he said. The Minister was optimistic that the Srilankan tourist map also will change if these endevours would succeed. National Heritage Ministry secretary Kanthi Wijethunga, Archaeological Department Director General Dr Senarath Dissanayake, former Archaeological Department Director Generals Dr. Roland Silva and Dr Shiran Deraniyagala, Central Cultural Fund Director General Prof. Nimal de Silva and Jaffna University Archeology and History Department Head Prof. Pushparathnam attended the discussion (Daily News ; 8 December 2010).

Norway to push development drive - The Norwegian Government has agreed to expand investments in Sri Lanka, said Norway Ambassador to Sri Lanka Hilda Haraldstad when she met Prime Minister D M Jayaratne at Visumpaya yesterday.  She said a high level business delegation is due in Sri Lanka next year to start new industries, a press release issued by the Prime Minister's office said.  The Prime Minister said a better environment is prevailing in Sri Lanka for new investments. The Prime Minister expressed his gratitude for the decision taken by the Norwegian Government to expand investments in Sri Lanka. He said plans are under way to strengthen the country's economy under the Mahinda Chintana vision. The Prime Minister also met Switzerland Ambassador to Sri Lanka Thomas Litscher yesterday (Daily News : 8 December 2010).

Navy’s role in triumph over LTTE - SLN 60th anniversary on Dec. 9 - Seizure of the LTTE trawler ‘Kadalpura’ in the northern seas on Oct. 2, 1987 by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) caused the swift collapse of the Indo-Lanka peace accord signed on July 29, 1987. India launched ‘Operation Pawan’ in the second week of Oct. to disarm the LTTE, after the group went on the rampage over those arrested onboard ‘Kadalpura’ taking cyanide to avoid being airlifted to Ratmalana from Palaly. Among them were Pulendran and Kumarappa, who had been in charge of Sea Tigers then, called ‘Kadalpura’. With the SLN’s 60th anniversary scheduled for Oct. 9, it would be pertinent to discuss the gradual transformation of the service to a superb fighting force, which had its biggest success in 2007 when it destroyed seven of the enemy’s ‘floating’ warehouses on the high seas. The LTTE never recovered from that debacle. The detection and seizure of ‘Kadalpura’ was made by the crew of P 467, one of the Israeli-built Super Dvoras, commanded by Lt. Commander Ariyadasa. Although Ariyadasa is no longer with the SLN, P 467’s second-in-command the then Lt. T. J. L. Sinniah remains in the service. Sinniah played an important role in operations on the high seas targeting LTTE vessels during Eelam war IV (Island : 7 December 2010).

British Defence Secretary to visit Sri Lanka - British Defence Secretary Dr Liam Fox is to visit Sri Lanka later this month to deliver the Lakshman Kadirgamar memorial lecture, a local media report has said. The widow of the late foreign minister has confirmed to one of the local TV channels, that Dr Fox will deliver the memorial lecture in Colombo on December 18. Kadirgamar was assassinated in 2005 despite the government and the LTTE then observing the Norway brokered ceasefire. Fox's government colleague, Alistair Burt, Secretary of State of Foreign and Commonwealth office for South Asia postponed his visit to the country this week amidst protests against UK in Sri Lanka following cancellation of President Mahinda Rajapksha's speech at Oxford University. However the British High Commission in Colombo said "the postponement came due to parliamentary pressures in the UK and the visit would be re-arranged as soon as possible" (Zee News : 7 December 2010).

Govt seeks PSC to probe MPs colluding with LTTE rump - The government yesterday handed over a resolution to speaker Chamal Rajapaksa seeking the appointment of a Parliamentary Select Committee to look into recent reports of a UNP MP collaborating with LTTE sympathisers abroad.  The resolution signed by 78 MPs was handed over to Speaker Rajapaksa by leader of the House Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva. The Chief Government Whip was also present. The select committee would probe whether the MP had violated his oath of office and the Sixth Amendment to the Constitution by colluding with LTTE sympathisers abroad.  The resolution seeks that the special select committee be given powers to call for evidence and to report to parliament, and powers to continue even if the parliamentary session expires or is prorogated (Island : 7 December 2010).

Torture, summary execution and war crimes in ‘nasty places’ - There are two indisputable facts associated with the US-UK led invasion of Iraq. First, there was absolutely no evidence of Iraq having ‘Weapons of Mass Destruction’ (WMD). Secondly, Nick Clegg, the British Deputy Prime Minister has confessed that the invasion was illegal.  Let’s throw in a third, for laughs: if the existence of WMD warrants invasion, the US should invade Britain and Britain should return the favour. Laughs aside, consequent to Points one and two, everything that US and British troops have done in Iraq since the invasion constitutes ‘War Crimes’.  Let’s get into specifics. We all know about Abu Ghraib and the techniques of interrogation practised by US troops.  Sorry, not all of us, for Patricia Butenis seems to be totally ignorant about these things. What many did not know was the fact that a similar torture chamber was run for years in Iraq by the Joint Forces Interrogation Team (JFIT). It has been dubbed ‘Britain’s Abu Ghraib’.  There is evidence of detainees at this facility being systematically and brutally mistreated. They were starved, deprived of sleep, subjected to sensory deprivation, threatened with execution and treated in numerous ways that contravene the Geneva Convention. Trainee interrogators have been told, it is now revealed, that they should ‘aim to provoke humiliation, disorientation, exhaustion, anxiety and fear in the prisoners they question’ (Daily News ; 7 December 2010).

Double standards of US Ambassador Butenis - by P.A.Samaraweera, Australia - In a recent address, US Ambassador Butenis had said, “…Obama and Hilary Cliton have made it a priority to reinvigorate America’s relationships with the world… Built new ones to meet shared challenges from climate change to ending the threat to nuclear weapons, to fight disease and poverty in countries like Sri Lanka…and I am proud to be part of it…” And she had been smiling. Then in cables sent to the US Dept., she had made allegations that the responsibility for many of the alleged war crimes rested with President Rajapakse, his brothers and Opposition Presidential candidate Sarath Fonseka. The irony is that, if Sarath Fonseka is labelled as ‘war criminal’ how did the TNA, one time mouthpiece of the LTTE, support him at the elections? Further, cables released by WikiLeaks say that the US Envoy Butenis had observed little progress in Sri Lanka’s investigations of alleged HR abuses during the final stages of the war. During this stage the govt was involved in a ‘Human rescue operation’ and it was the LTTE which went on a killing spree of civilians escaping to govt controlled areas. But she had made no comments about HR abuses by the LTTE. May be because for her they were a different type of ‘terrorists’ as the LTTE appeared to be from a US favoured terrorist organisation. And that was why towards the end of the war the US offered to rescue them. Thus US tried to put Sri Lanka which was struggling to free herself from terrorists back in shackles. The US targetted the morale of the people and the soldiers fighting the war (LankaWeb : 7 December 2010).

Only LTTE commited war crimes – Sajith Premadasa

Trade Unions condemn LTTE demo - The Central Council of Ceylon Trade Unions yesterday condemned the LTTE demonstration in London which precipitated the cancellation of the President's lecture to the Oxford Union as a challenge to the whole Sri Lankan nation and called upon the people to make a united stand to defeat the machination of the LTTE diaspora to bring war crimes allegations against Sri Lanka which successfully defeated the most ruthless terrorist outfit in the world. The Council in a press release issued under the signature of its General Secretary Somaweera Chandrasiri said the Government led by President Rajapaksa is engaged in a massive development drive spending over Rs two billion already for the development of the North-East and resettlement of the displaced and it was the duty of all Sri Lankans including those living abroad to assist that endeavour. As much as the Government has requested the Tamil Diaspora to assist in the North-East development if it is genuinely interested in the welfare of the Tamil community the UNP too should shelve vituperative and obstructionist politics and join hands with the Government to develop the country. The release also challenged the UNP to prove its opposition to terrorism by bringing in a Parliamentary motion condemning the LTTE protest in London (Daily News : 7 December 2010).

Only LTTE committed war crimes - Sajith - UNP MP Sajith Premadasa said in Parliament yesterday that war crimes were committed only by the LTTE in Sri Lanka. He was responding to a Point of Order raised by Construction and Engineering Services, Housing and Common Amenities Minister Wimal Weerawansa yesterday in respect of a statement made by UNP Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya to a weekend English language newspaper expressing the need for investigating alleged war crimes. MP Premadasa was speaking at the debate on the third reading of the Appreciation Bill under the head of Health Ministry when Minister Weerawansa raised the point of order. Minister Weerawansa thanked MP Sajith Premadasa for commending his stance on this matter (Daily News : 7 December 2010).

Only LTTE commited war crimes – Sajith - UNP Hambantota District Parliamentarian Sajith Premadasa yesterday told Parliament that if there were any war crimes committed in Sri Lanka it was only by the LTTE. In stating so, he dismissed UNP Deputy leader Karu Jayasuriya’s statement to the Sunday Island that Sri Lanka should probe the war crimes allegations.  In his statement to the Sunday Island of December 5, Jayasuriya urged President Mahinda Rajapaksa to investigate human rights violation allegations levelled against the country. This was necessary to normalize relations with the West and the Tamil Diaspora, the UNP Deputy leader urged.  Sajith Premadasa was yesterday prompted to state that only the LTTE committed war crimes when NFF leader and Minister Wimal Weerawansa, raising a point of order, referred to Jayasuriya’s statement to the Sunday Island which said an investigation was necessary while Premadasa, to The Island’s sister paper Divaina, had said that there were no war crimes committed in Sri Lanka and therefore no investigation was needed (Island : 6 December 2010).

Has UK become vulnerable to the machinations of LTTE rump ? - Faiszer Musthapha - Deputy Minister of Technology and Research Faiszer Musthapha referring to the Oxford Union’s cancellation of the scheduled address by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on December 2, queried whether the United Kingdom had become vulnerable to the machinations of LTTE remnants and its lackeys. Musthapha has issued the following statement regarding the cancellation of President Rajapaksa’s address:  "We Sri Lankans are amazed by the fact that the Oxford Union, which was described by no less a person than the late Harold McMillan, a former Prime Minister of Britain, as the ’the last bastion of free speech’, surrendered its independence to a mob of domiciled terrorists and cancelled a lecture scheduled to be delivered by President Mahinda Rajapaksa.  "What startles right minded persons, who uphold the values of democracy, is the ability of a handful of terrorists to hold the prestigious Oxford University community to ransom and bring the British polity into disgrace.  "The Oxford Union, which is now 186 years old, has had, among its alumni, twelve British Prime Ministers. Its guest speakers over the years include a glittering array of global personalities who had excelled in diverse fields from politics to science, art, sports and many others (Island : 6 December 2010).

The London fiasco and lessons - By S. L. Gunasekara - If the excuse given by the Oxford Union for canceling the scheduled address is true (it has not been contradicted by the Oxford Union or the British Government to date), it must follow that this episode proves beyond doubt, firstly, that the law enforcement authorities of the allegedly ‘Great’ Britain were intimidated by and/or confessed to being unable to control a gang of Tamil hooligans/rowdies/rabble and their backers if they chose to misbehave on the streets of Oxford and inconvenience bona fide travelers thereon; and secondly, that the law enforcement authorities of the allegedly ‘Great’ Britain and the members of the Oxford Union are a bunch of imbeciles.  The Tamil hooligans/rowdies/rabble who, by their threats of misconduct on the streets of Oxford are alleged to have so over-awed the law enforcement authorities of the allegedly `Great’ Britain and the Oxford Union into canceling at the 11th hour, an address by the Head of State of Sri Lanka who came to London specifically for the purpose of delivering that address on the invitation of the Oxford Union caused indescribable jubilation among those hooligans/rowdies/rabble and their supporters. That episode of British imbecility and cowardice was trumpeted unceasingly in various newspapers and websites as being a tremendous humiliation for our Head of State and a victory for those hooligans/rowdies/rabble among the Tamil expatriates and their backers (Island : 6 December 2010).

Tigers bought Japanese Coast Guard vessels

Tamil MPs condemn UK demo - Says blow to interracial harmony - Want diaspora to invest in North - Colombo district Parliamentarian Praba Ganeshan and Nuwara Eliya district Parliamentarian P Digambaram condemned the disruptive actions of the Tamil diaspora during President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s recent visit to the UK.  Addressing the media Saturday they urged the Tamil diaspora to assist Government efforts to rebuild the lives of the displaced Tamil people in the North and East if they were genuinely concerned about helping them.  The two MPs said that they had convened the media briefing to convey their strong protest against the disruptive actions of the Tamil diaspora which according to them was backed by a few Sinhala elements during President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s recent visit to the UK.  Praba Ganeshan MP described the actions instigated by the Tamil diaspora in London as a blow to the ever growing harmony between the Tamil and Sinhala communities since the end of conflict and one which had put the local Tamil community in difficulty.  He said that what the Tamil diaspora should do was to help strengthen the bond of friendship between the Sinhala and Tamil communities while helping to alleviate the difficulties of their colleagues in the North and East if they were genuinely concerned. P. Digambaram MP said that the Government since the end of the conflict was doing its utmost to help the displaced civilians and rebuild the conflict ravaged areas.  “In this effort the Government has made enormous strides in its attempts at reconciliation and rebuilding,” he noted.  “In this backdrop, staging protests outside the country would only hurt the Tamil people and the progress they have made,” he added.  “If the diaspora needed to support the Tamils, they should visit the North and East, and rebuild the schools as well as the roads ravaged during the war. They could also invest in Sri Lanka,” he added.  The duo said that only the President and the Government had the capacity and the willingness to help the conflict affected people and not the opposition groups.  They said that the Tamil National Alliance too was aware of the fact. They urged the Tamil Diaspora to strengthen the hands of the President and join with Government efforts at rebuilding the lives of conflict affected Tamil people (Daily news ; 6 December 2010).

Open letter to US Ambassador to Sri Lanka - by Ira De Silva, Canada - I refer to your statement at the outset of the news regarding the content of the information made available to the world on diplomatic exchanges from the U.S. embassy in Colombo and the U.S. State Department. Your claim was that this information should not be made public and your Secretary of State could also only condemn the exposure stating that it would endanger lives. What is clear is that the U.S. is only concerned with American lives and have no regard for the lives of others they have deliberately killed, wounded and rendered homeless. The information according to a leaked cable is that you hold the Sri Lankan President and former Army Commander responsible for alleged war crimes last year. According to you, "one of the reasons that there was so little progress towards a genuine Sri Lankan inquiry into how so many people were killed was that the president and the former army commander, Sarath Fonseka, were largely responsible". In non diplomatic language you are making a direct accusation against the president and the former army commander. What is the basis of your opinion that the president’s two brothers are war criminals? Could you now make a statement indicating on what evidence you hold the Sri Lankan president, his brothers and the Army Commander responsible for alleged war crimes? Sri Lankans would be most interested - perhaps you could send it to the LLRC. Also advise Sri Lankans of what progress the U.S. is making towards not just an inquiry but a "genuine" inquiry now that the world knows that the U.S. is "largely responsible" for hundreds of thousands being killed in many parts of the world (Island : 5 December 2010).

Tigers bought Japanese Coast Guard vessels - The LTTE is believed to have acquired at least four utility vessels formerly of the Japanese Maritime Safety Agency/Coast Guard through an agency handling sale of used ships.  Sources say ‘Blue Hawk’, ‘Magamai’, ‘Rakuy’ and ‘Expor’ had been used by the LTTE to move arms, ammunition and equipment from floating warehouses over many years in its war against Sri Lanka.  The vessel destroyed on Sept. 17, 2006 about 120 nautical miles off Kalmunai on the East coast could be one of the 22 metre Japanese vessels, sources believe.  The LTTE is believed to have purchased as many as 30 ships of different categories since 198, the majority of them hfrom Japanese firms, though theJapanese government wasn’t aware of the transactions. Those who handled the purchases on behalf of the LTTE had acted as legitimate ship operators.  Ponnaih Anandarajah alias Iyanna, one-time KP’s second-in-command is widely believed to have handled the transactions. Anandarajah succeeded ‘KP’ during the Norwegian-arranged CFA, though the LTTE reinstated KP a few months before the collapse of the group in May last year. Anandarajah visited Vanni, where he met LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran during the CFA.  Sources said that Anandarajah’s whereabouts weren’t known. It is believed that Anandarajah could be working with one of the three Diaspora factions now engaged in a major propaganda campaign against the Sri Lankan government. Sources said he was having a substantial amount of funds at his disposal.  Of the LTTE ships numbering about 30, the Sri Lanka Navy sunk about a dozen vessels. India destroyed one and another was detained by another country. Even if a few vessels had been disposed of by the LTTE, about ten ships could have been engaged in legitimate business one and half years after the conclusion of the war, sources said (Island : 5 December 2010).

The Need to Tame the LTTE Diaspora  - by Kumar Moses - It’s easy to predict the next moves of the LTTE Diaspora. Much has happened since the above timely topic was discussed a few weeks back. Unfortunately the LTTE Diaspora is hell bent on treading a destructive path. Although the government arranged a protest rally by resettled civilians against the irresponsible LTTE Diaspora, it was not very successful. Only a very small number of people participated with government agencies supplying them with flags, etc. and they didn’t do it voluntarily. Their elected representatives, mostly TNA, are also waiting for the opportune time to discredit Sri Lanka and to extort the maximum from the government over dramas created by the Diaspora. This has been the practice of racist politics for long. LTTE would blast a bomb and immediately racist political parties would demand a political solution to stop bomb blasts. Now that the LTTE is gone, the LTTE Diaspora is the bargaining tool of these race based political parties. As Wikileaks documents prove, Tamil political parties in Sri Lanka refrain from discrediting Sri Lanka, its leaders and its armed forces not because they think its unimportant but for the fear of retribution (LankaWeb : 5 December 2010).

Top British official puts off visit - The British High Commission yesterday said a top British official’s planned visit to Sri Lanka next week had been postponed due to ongoing parliamentary sittings. Alastair Burt, Secretary of State of Foreign and Commonwealth office for South Asia, was due to visit Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and the Maldives, British HC spokesperson Dominic Williams told The Island. "Over the past few days we have been discussing the possibility of altering the dates of the proposed visit due to parliamentary pressures in the UK," he said. "We hope to re-arrange these visits as soon as possible." (Island : 5 December 2010).

Passport forgers’ LTTE links bared - Spanish and Thai police investigating a gang that supplied forged passports to al-Qaeda-linked groups have found new evidence of links to the LTTE, news agencies say quoting Spanish authorities.  Spanish and Thai police are analysing material seized last Tuesday in a joint operation in which 10 people - eight Pakistanis, a Nigerian and a Thai national - were arrested in the two countries, Spain’s interior ministry has said in a statement.  The 10 are suspected of providing forged passports to organisations linked to al-Qaeda, including the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba, accused of plotting the attacks in Mumbai that killed 174 people in November 2008, as well as to the LTTE.  Police seized forged passports, immigration documents, faked rubber stamps, computers, mobile phones, passport photos, British driving licences and sophisticated counterfeiting equipment in the swoop named Operation Kampai.  Spanish police experts "have travelled to Thailand and are working with Thailand’s Department of Special Investigation to analyse the numerous documents seized from the cell’’, the Interior Ministry said.  "An initial examination of photographs seized has turned up evidence of the membership of some members of the LTTE."  "Many of its members were based in Western countries, where they obtained financial assistance for the organisation through extortion and drug trafficking," it said (Island : 5 December 2010).

Tamil people in Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu and Oddusdan held a massive demonstration against LTTE elements in the UK

The people of Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu held a massive demonstration yesterday against LTTE elements in the UK and burned effigies of Prabhakaran and Pottu Amman.

British minister postpones visit to Sri Lanka - report - : British parliamentarian and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), Alistair Burt has postponed his Sri Lanka visit, a PTI news report said. Burt was reportedly scheduled to visit Sri Lanka from Monday on a three-day tour. He was also expected to travel to Maldives and Bangladesh.  Local media citing British High Commission sources in Colombo reported that the visit has been cancelled. However, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office is yet to confirm the cancellation.  The postponement of the visit has come in the wake of a protest against the British government launched by the Housing Minister Wimal Weerawansa in front of the British High Commission on Friday (03).  The protest was in response to the cancellation of a lecture by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the prestigious Oxford Union during his visit to Britain last week.  The protestors accused the British Government of supporting the pro-LTTE Tamil groups in the UK and trying to revive the terrorist organization eliminated in Sri Lanka.  An official of the British High Commission in Colombo has said that they have been discussing the possibility of altering the dates of the proposed visit due to parliamentary pressures in the UK.  "We hope to re-arrange these visits as soon as possible," the official has said (Colombo Page ; 5 December 2010).

Protests against LTTE proxies in North - The people of Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu and Oddusdan participated in a massive demonstration yesterday against LTTE elements in the UK who orchestrated anti-Sri Lanka protests in London earlier this week. Residents of Vishwamadu and Vallipuram were also among the protestors.  An unprecedented number of people attended the demonstrations, carrying placards against the LTTE. A significant feature was the enthusiastic participation by women and children. The crowd burned effigies of Prabhakaran and Pottu Amman. They had cursed the remaining leaders and members of the LTTE rump living abroad. Traders also joined in the protest, closing their shops and hoisting black flags.  Many placards mentioned that President Rajapaksa brought them peace after wiping out the LTTE, which took their freedoms away and subjected them to untold hardships. “We are living in peace because of the President,” the demonstrators said. “We sleep soundly because of you President Rajapaksa” was another slogan. Resettlement is mostly complete in the North (Sunday Observer : 5  December 2010).

Laughter, slaughter, lies and duplicity - By Therese Leitan - The recent call for a fresh probe by the UN into a video aired by UK-based Channel 4 on Sri Lanka is a good example of the duplicity of this ‘rubber stamp’ organisation of the US. In fact this video, which is not even proved authentic, allegedly showing Sri Lankan troops executing naked men and women, brings to mind authenticated videos of atrocities by US troops in Iraq. One example is the infamous Wikileaks ‘collateral murder’ video, which shows US troops in Apache helicopters slaughtering an Iraqi Reuters cameraman and children while laughing about it. This was recently aired on CNN. The two children, Sajad Salah and his little sister Duaa Salah, survived but were badly wounded. Today they live with their aunt with lasting scars on their bodies and minds. This video was genuine. There were no technical discrepancies. And neither was there a call for an immediate probe by the UN into this incident. In fact other than an apology by former US Army specialists Josh Stieber and Ethan McCord nothing more was said about it. The UN Special Rapporteur on extra-judicial, summary or arbitrary executions did not call for any fresh probes here. But how does the regret expressed by the soldiers justify the unprovoked slaughter witnessed in the Wikileaks video? Why has not there been a war crimes inquiry by the UN into this one? It’s hard to comprehend why Christopher Heyns, the UN special rapporteur, did not say ‘It is shocking indeed, and clearly deserves more investigation,’ as he was quoted as saying by Channel 4 News regarding the video on Sri Lanka that they released (The Nation : 5 December 2010).

Job opportunities for youth: N-E industrial ventures to be reactivated - Mineral Sands, Paranthan Chemicals, Cement Corporation and other industrial institutions located in the Northern and Eastern Provinces have to be reactivated before the middle of next year, said State Resources and Enterprise Development Minister Dayashritha Tissera.  He said job opportunities have to be provided to the youth in those areas to strengthen their means of livelihood.  The State Resources and Enterprise Development Ministry was set up six months ago, having taken over 26 non-functional and loss-making State institutions under its purview. Minister Tissera said the Ministry has succeeded in transforming some ventures as plantation companies and Mavanalla Rubber Manufacturing Company into profit-earning bodies within six months under the guidance of former State Resources Minister and present Senior Minister of Food and Nutrition P. Dayaratna.  State Resources and Enterprise Development Ministry Secretary Dr. Willy Gamage said Laksala and Salusala have also achieved remarkable progress. The Treasury was relieved of the burden of paying the salaries of Salusala employees as a result of the managerial changes effected by his Ministry.  The Ministry has obtained Cabinet approval to reactivate cement, paper, sugar and ceramic corporations, he said. Dr. Gamage said that to introduce managerial changes, the 26 institutions which came under his Ministry were categorised into three-the already profit-making, those that could be made profitable and those running at a loss (Sunday Observer : 5 December 2010).

A post mortem of a snub - The President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa, was snubbed. Well and truly snubbed. Perhaps it was Sri Lankan generosity, perhaps it was ego or perhaps it was just seizing of an opportunity to present his case, his vision or his credentials, perhaps a reaching out, a going of an extra mile with respect to the pro-Eelam/LTTE sections of the Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora, we don’t really know why he accepted this invitation. He opened himself to a snub and snubbed he was. There’s no political fallout here, though. The rabidly anti-Mahinda sections of our polity, including those who were rooting for the LTTE at the height of the military offensive, would have lost a lot of saliva over the past three days (The Nation : 5 December 2010).

Expose double standard of West - DM - The double standards of some European and Western countries on terrorism should be revealed to the world, Prime Minister D.M.Jayaratne said today. He said in a statement that no democratic nation in the world should stay in silence with regard to the incident in London, where some LTTE sympathizers held demonstration against the visiting President Mahinda Rajapaksa last week. Issuing a statement the Prime Minister said that as a nation, Sri Lanka faced several such situations in the past as well. “We should face this strongly, to defeat those powers,” the Premier said (Daily Mirror : 5 December 2010).

LTTE links bared in Thailand : Spanish and Thai police investigating a gang that supplied forged passports to al-Qaeda-linked groups have found new evidence of links to Sri Lanka's LTTE, Spanish authorities said. Spanish and Thai police are analysing material seized in a joint operation in which 10 people - eight Pakistanis, a Nigerian and a Thai national were arrested in the two countries, Spain's Interior Ministry said yesterday in a statement. The 10 are suspected of providing forged passports to organisations linked to al-Qaeda, including the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba, accused of plotting the attacks in Mumbai that killed 174 people in November 2008, as well as to the Tigers. Police seized forged passports, immigration documents, faked rubber stamps, computers, mobile phones, passport photos, British driving licences and sophisticated counterfeiting equipment in the swoop named "Operation Kampai". Spanish police experts "have travelled to Thailand and are working with Thailand's Department of Special Investigation to analyse the numerous documents seized from the cell'', the Interior Ministry said yesterday. "An initial examination of photographs seized has turned up evidence of the membership of some members of the terrorist organisation, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam." (Sunday Observer : 5 December 2010).

Support from NGOs crucial for Lanka - After observing the events that unfolded last week, if someone mistook Sri Lanka for still being a colony of the British, it would be unfair to criticise that assumption. Initially, President Mahinda Rajapaksa was invited to address the prestigious Oxford Union in the United Kingdom, but then bringing back memories of colonial harassment from over 60 years ago, Sri Lanka’s First Citizen was told that he was no longer wanted at the Oxford Union, and that too after he had reached the UK. And then, as if to insult Sri Lankans’ level of intelligence, the mighty British claimed that the speech was cancelled because they “couldn’t guarantee adequate security” for the President. Even though it’s tempting to explain what happened over the week along the lines of modern day colonialism, what really took place was probably worse than that: One of the most outspoken champions of global peace and security, the British, succumbed to pressure exerted by the supporters of a banned terrorist organisation. To deconstruct the events that took place, The Nation turned to one of the world’s leading and most sought after international terrorism experts, Professor Rohan Gunaratna. Among the many positions he holds, Professor Gunaratna is also the Head of the International Centre for Prevention of Violence and Terrorism Research (ICPVTR) in Singapore, and has in depth experience and knowledge regarding the Sri Lankan conflict. Following are excerpts from the interview: (The Nation : 5 December 2010).

Jaffna don comes down hard on Oxford Union - President Mahinda Rajapaksa should not have been prevented from addressing the Oxford Union. A university means, an institution of ideas. Therefore, the President should have been allowed to speak instead of preventing him from addressing the Oxford Union Forum according to Dr. Ratnajeevan Hoole, one of the contenders for the post of the Vice Chancellor of the University of Jaffna.  Dr. Ratnajeevan Hoole was elected as the Vice Chancellor of the University of Jaffna in 2006. However, he had to withdraw from the post due to the threats to his life and his family members by the LTTE.  Dr. Hoole commenting on the Oxford issue in London last week told the Sunday Observer that the Universities are places of learning and independent thinking.  Therefore, President Rajapaksa in his capacity as a Head of State should not have been prevented from addressing the Oxford Union. “He should have been allowed to address the Forum and the audience could have come out with questions.  Dr. Ratnajeevan Hoole said that two of his brothers, Dr. Rajan Hoole and Dr. Paul Hoole were products of the University of Oxford.  Dr. Ratnajeevan Hoole is in the fray for the post of Vice Chancellor of the University of Jaffna after four years.  Commenting on Jaffna after the LTTE, was defeated Dr. Hoole said, that he could see the difference.  “Following threats to my family and self from the LTTE, I lived in the United States for the past four years. I have been living in Jaffna for the past three months.  “The North under the grip of the LTTE was terrible. Everyone was living under pressure and intimidation.  “The terrorist outfit did not allow people in the North to think or act freely.  “However, with the fall of the outfit, there is a vast change in the day-to-day life of the people in the North.  “Essential food and services are flowing freely into the peninsula.  “The political parties are functioning freely. Hence, I see the light at the end of the tunnel like others in Jaffna,” Dr. Hoole said (Sunday Observer : 5 December 2010).

Mental health program in North - The Ministry of Health and the College of Psychiatrists will implement a special project on mental health for the Northern Province funded by the Australian Government, through its aid agency, AusAID. In this special initiative, Australia will fund World Vision to assist the Ministry of Health in the implementation of the community based components of the National Mental Health Policy in the Northern Province through the 'Reconciliation through integration of Mental Health in Northern Districts' (REMIND) project in Sri Lanka. The Australian Government will provide Rs. 50 million over a one-year period. Australia's High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Kathy Klugman said "Mental Health concerns are clearly a pressing need in the North. We are happy to be part of this important initiative". The program will fund the deployment of 40 Community Support Officers and 10 mental health service centres over the next year. The project design seeks to use best practices to build the capacity of government mental health services and the communities they serve. In particular, strengthening relationships is central to the project approach. REMIND will promote equitable recovery and reconciliation in the north including through greater trust and better relationships between individuals, families, communities and government services. The Ministry of Health (MOH), Health Services (Northern Provincial Council), Medical Office of Mental Health (MOMH), College of Psychiatrists (COP) will be key partners in the implementation of the project. The people living in northern Sri Lanka have experienced prolonged conflict, displacement and extreme poverty. As families begin resettling in their villages and re-establishing their livelihoods, mental health and well-being has been identified as an urgent and important need. By addressing peoples well-being there is opportunity to shield individuals from psychiatric illness, encourage speedier emotional and social recovery as well as support families and communities to look towards a positive and peaceful future (Sunday Observer : 5 December 2010).

Despite LTTE listed as a banned outfit in UK British police turned blind eye while Tamil protesters waved LTTE flags

Let the truth prevail on Oxford Union non-event - Some People’s Representatives have, once again, let down the silent but moral majority of this country by resorting to rowdy, outrageous behaviour within the House of Parliament. The disgraceful conduct was apparently triggered by issues arising out of the cancellation recently of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s address to the Oxford Union. As reported, MP Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena was confronted and manhandled by some government MPs within Parliament last Thursday over the allegation that he was responsible for the anti-government LTTE protests that broke out in London prior to President Rajapaksa’s Oxford Union address and which led to the latter canceling the invitation extended to the President for making the address.  Ideally, an independent probe should be conducted on the allegation and the truth ascertained with a view to punishing any wrong doers over the Oxford Union non-event, but until then it is obligatory on the part of all relevant quarters to restrain themselves and to reserve their comments, lest grave harm is done to the persons facing the allegations. In short, the due process of law needs to take effect on the issues in question. No persons, meanwhile, could take the law into their hands and engage in criminal acts on the basis of hazy presuppositions, which would make a mockery of the Rule of Law. The suggestion that a Parliamentary Select Committee goes into this issue, is a sound proposition and we urge the authorities to give it serious thought. It is only fair that all misconceptions are cleared on this question and Dr. J.J. given an opportunity to answer the allegations leveled at him, with a view to clearing his name of any wrong-doing (Island : 4 December 2010).

Tamil Tiger links uncovered - Spanish and Thai police investigating a gang that supplied forged passports to al-Qaeda-linked groups have found new evidence of links to Sri Lanka's defeated Tamil Tiger rebels, Spanish authorities say.  Spanish and Thai police are analysing material seized late on Tuesday in a joint operation in which 10 people - eight Pakistanis, a Nigerian and a Thai national - were arrested in the two countries, Spain's interior ministry said yesterday in a statement.  The 10 are suspected of providing forged passports to organisations linked to al-Qaeda, including the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba, accused of plotting the attacks in Mumbai that killed 174 people in November 2008, as well as to the Tamil Tigers.  Police seized forged passports, immigration documents, faked rubber stamps, computers, mobile phones, passport photos, British driving licences and sophisticated counterfeiting equipment in the swoop named Operation Kampai.  Spanish police experts "have travelled to Thailand and are working with Thailand's Department of Special Investigation to analyse the numerous documents seized from the cell'', the Interior Ministry said yesterday.  "An initial examination of photographs seized has turned up evidence of the membership of some members of the terrorist organisation the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam."  The LTTE "has perpetrated bloody attacks, many of them by suicides, such as that which killed the former Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991.  "Many of its members were based in Western countries, where they obtained financial assistance for the organisation through extortion and drug trafficking," it said (Bangkok Post : 4 December 2010).

Despite LTTE listed as a banned outfit in UK British police turned blind eye while Tamil protesters waved LTTE flags - President Mahinda Rajapaksa arrived in the UK aboard SriLankan Airlines UL509 on Monday night amidst protests by pro-LTTE Tamils in London. He was here to deliver a talk at Oxford University at the invitation of Oxford Union. Scores of Tamils thronged the Heathrow Terminal 4 where the aircraft carrying the Sri Lankan leader and his 40-member entourage touched down. Although the LTTE is a proscribed terrorist organization in UK, these demonstrators waved LTTE flags and shouted anti-Sri Lankan slogans.  They had even shouted at the Sinhala passengers who were coming out of Terminal 4 and some of the protesters had even gone to the extent of threatening these passengers while the British Police looked on. Amidst the rumpus, the President was taken to ‘Windsor Suite’ in Terminal 5 where VIPs are generally received.  Rajapaksa was welcomed by the Sri Lankan High Commissioner in London Nihal Jayasinghe after which the entourage was driven under police escort from Heathrow Airport to Dochester Hotel in Park Lane, London.  President was accompanied by Foreign Affairs Minister G. L. Peris, Higher Education Minister S. B. Dissanayake and MP Sajin Vass Gunawardena.  There were no official engagements for the President on Tuesday who rested while some members in the group did some shopping or visited friends (Island : 4 December 2010).

Sri Lankans stage anti-British protests

SECURITY THREAT TO PRESIDENT RAJAPKSA- BY WHOM? - by Malin Abeyatunge, Melbourne, Australia - Oxford Union has cancelled the much sought address by President Rajapaksa due to security concerns. This is very interesting. Now where does this security threat come from? Neither the Oxford Union nor the Metropolitan Police has failed to mention from where the security of President Rajapaksa is threatened. Let us call a spade a spade and say that the LTTE supportive Diaspora in London is the security concerned and surely not Al Queda or Talibans.. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to know that it is the LTTE terrorist group operating in London and other parts of UK who is behind the security threat to President Rajapaksa. If there is a security threat to a head of any state, why can’t the Scotland yard/Metropolitan police hunt for those terrorists who are a security threat instead of mollycoddling them further (Sri Lanka News Online : 4 December 2010).

The West’s unconditional and ceaseless bashing of Sihale - By Kith de Silva - Here we go again.UK Channel 4 has timed it perfectly. What a fantastic diversion to take the heat away from the Wikileaks exposing atrocities of the West. Kick Sri Lanka in the guts yet again. No one should condone civilian killings by any. However over three decades LTTE went on killing spree of civilians and wanton destruction of economic assets and desecration of religious sites in Sri Lanka. British and other so called guardians of human rights and democracy kept mum, the minority Tamil votes in marginal seats and the blood money of the terrorist to oil their campaign was more important. What a duplicity? US waged war and is still doing so in other sovereign countries slaughtering civilians. Agent Orange, carpet bombing of entire villages were then “the smart war”. The Sri Lankan soldier fought a war on his Motherland to rid it from the most dangerous terrorist outfit of our time while the West was supporting the terrorists. Such is the duplicity of the West so they have no moral authority to castigate my Motherland. As for UK the duplicity has no peer. They raped and pillaged my Motherland as colonial invaders. They introduced genocide to Sihale by annihilating all the Sinhala men over eighteen years old in Welassa after the uprising. Even as we speak now Adele Balasingham, a key terrorist who was the mentor of the LTTE female brigade is living a luxury life in London out of the blood money of the LTTE. London was the official headquarters of LTTE while it was banned in UK! Now it is all out. Yes LTTE blood money bank rolled UK political machine, a fact many know but wish to deny. The same scenario is happening in all Western democracies. The irony is that Tamil racists are masters of this game. They did this right throughout the history of Sri Lanka politics, both pre and post independents. That is why before the Racist and Communal politics of Tamils came to be clearly established in Sri Lanka in seventies many Tamils represented Sinhala majority electorates in Sri Lanka. However Sihale has prevailed for nearly three millennia against all odds and we shall prevail (LankaWeb : 4 December 2010).

Anti-Sri Lanka protest in London: Masses protest - Political parties, TUs, workers participate - Demand expulsion of unpatriotic politicians - Several demonstrations were held in the Colombo city yesterday protesting against the alleged participation of UNP Parliamentarian Dr Jayalath Jayawardena and Dr Wickremabahu Karunaratne in the LTTE terrorist demonstration held in London which precipitated the cancellation of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s lecture to the Oxford Union. Thousands of people including members of political parties, trade unions, workers, professionals and political leaders participated in these protest campaigns. The protest opposite the British High Commission in Colombo was led by the Jathika Nidhahas Peramuna. Police strengthened security around the British High Commission to prevent the protesters from entering the High Commission compound. The protest campaign opposite the Fort Railway Station attended by members of trade Unions attached to the Port, Co-operative and Self Employment sectors and the Presidential Secretariat was held by Western Province Governor Alavi Mowlana (Daily News : 4 December 2010).

Wikileaks on Sri Lanka - by Ira de Silva London, Ontario - Ms. P. Butenis U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka Colombo, Sri Lanka; Dear Madam: I refer to your statement at the outset of the news regarding the content of the information made available to the world on diplomatic exchanges from the U.S. embassy in Colombo and the U.S. State Department. Your claim was that this information should not be made public and your Secretary of State could also only condemn the exposure stating that it would endanger lives. What is clear is that the U.S. is only concerned with American lives and have no regard for the lives of others they have deliberately killed, wounded and rendered homeless. The information according to a leaked cable is that you hold the Sri Lankan President and former Army Commander responsible for alleged war crimes last year. According to you, “one of the reasons that there was so little progress towards a genuine Sri Lankan enquiry into how so many people were killed was that the president and the former army commander, Sarath Fonseka, were largely responsible”. In non diplomatic language you are making a direct accusation against the president and the former army commander. What is the basis of your opinion that the president’s two brothers are war criminals? Could you now make a statement indicating on what evidence you hold the Sri Lankan president, his brothers and the Army Commander responsible for alleged war crimes? Sri Lankans would be most interested – perhaps you could send it to the LLRC. Also advise Sri Lankans of what progress the U.S. is making towards not just an inquiry but a “genuine” inquiry now that the world knows that the U.S. is “largely responsible” for hundreds of thousands being killed in many parts of the world (LankaWeb : 4 December 2010).

Minister hits out at Britain - The National Freedom Font (NFF) led by Minister Wimal Weerawansa yesterday held a protest outside the British High Commission in Colombo charging that the British government had failed to prevent pro-LTTE demonstrations against the London visit of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. The British High Commission however remained closed for the day. The minister alleged that the British government took little or no action to stop the protest because it still supported the LTTE. Protesters shouted slogans calling the British government white Tigers and held placards asking whether Britain was ruled by Tiger laws. “The British have always supported the LTTE and this is their method of taking revenge from the government for not paying attention to them during the war,” the minister said adding that Sri Lanka was ready to face any challenge by any foreign forces. “We were patient all this time. We will not allow these foreign forces to take action against the President, the defence secretary or any soldier,” he said (Daily Mirror : 4 December 2010).

Tamil voters in Britain behind London's Sri Lanka stance: WikiLeaks - The British government's concern for ex-pat Tamil voters in marginal constituencies at home drove London's criticisms of the Sri Lankan government's actions in last year's ending of the country's civil war, WikiLeaks diplomatic cables suggest.  David Miliband, then British foreign secretary in a Labour government, was outspoken in criticism of the actions of the Colombo government as it closed in on Tamil fighters in the north of the island, where many thousand civilians were also sheltering.  The cable noted 'the 'very vocal' Tamil diaspora in the UK, numbering over 300,000' people.  'With UK elections on the horizon and many Tamils living in Labour constituencies with slim majorities, the government is paying particular attention to Sri Lanka,' read a cable from the United States embassy in London from the spring of 2009.  As the Sri Lankan military made its final push in the early part of 2009 against the militant Tamil Tigers, human rights groups warned of extreme abuses taking place, and United Nations officials estimated that thousands of civilians might have been killed in the final weeks of fighting.  Another cable, from the US Embassy in Colombo, highlighted that US diplomats had concerns over human rights abuses and the failure of the government to adequately address the charges.  The 'responsibility for many of the alleged crimes rests with the country's senior civilian and military leadership, including President Rajapaksa and his brothers and opposition candidate General Fonseka,' a message said (M & C ; 4 December 2010).

Sri Lankans stage anti-British protests - Hundreds of ruling party activists gathered outside the British Embassy in Colombo to denounce the move. The protesters, led by Sri Lanka's housing minister held the British government responsible for the cancellation. "British imperialists, we will never surrender to you," Housing Minister Wimal Weerawansa said. "Down with anti-Sri Lanka policy!" shouted activists. President Mahinda Rajapaksa was to address the Oxford Union on Thursday. However, organizers cancelled his speech after London's Tamil population protested the visit. The demonstrators accused Rajapaksa of war crimes during Sri Lanka's three-decade war against the Tamils, and called for his arrest. Tension has risen between Colombo and Western governments over a range of issues, including Colombo's final onslaught against the rebels. Sri Lanka has accused the US and its allies of protecting and supporting the rebels in the past as well. Rajapaksa is credited for the final defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in May 2009. Former British foreign secretary David Miliband and his French counterpart Bernard Kouchner failed to secure a truce between Sri Lankan forces and LTTE rebels in the past. Colombo dismissed a Western-backed ceasefire with the Tigers, calling it a 'joke' as the rebels were near a final defeat. "It is my duty to protect the people of this country. I don't need lectures from Western representatives," Rajapaksa said in a speech in May, 2009. The president strongly condemned the US and its NATO allies for their crimes against civilians in war-ravaged Afghanistan. US-led strikes have killed hundreds of civilians across Afghanistan over the past months. "We have seen how Afghanistan is bombed. Those who come to preach to us [have] seen how Afghanistan is bombed. It must be made clear that before accusing others, you must have the strength to know what you do yourself," Rajapaksa said (Press TV : 3 December 2010).

The cancellation of the Second Address of H.E. Mahinda Rajapaksa, President of Sri Lanka at the Oxford Union. - Press Statement – Oxford University Sri Lanka Society The Oxford University Sri Lanka Society is shocked and outraged at the eleventh hour cancellation of the Second Address of H.E. Mahinda Rajapaksa, President of Sri Lanka at the Oxford Union by its President James Kingston. We consider it a slur not only on Sri Lanka but also on the long cherished ideals of freedom of speech and liberty in the United Kingdom. It is reprehensible and utterly irresponsible that this was done only after President Rajapaksa had arrived in the United Kingdom and forever will be a black day in the annals of the Oxford Union (LankaWeb : 4 December 2010).

Probe on LTTE in Kerala - The Indian media claims an investigation has been launched by the police in Kerala over what is believed to be a possible attempt by the LTTE to regroup in the Indian state. A documentary screened a few days back at a hall in the heart of Trivandrum city has sparked suspicion that the LTTE might be regrouping in parts of Kerala, IBN Live reported today. The film exhibitors were questioned by the Kerala Police who fear that it could be a garb for the outfit to regroup. Mullaiteevu Saga, a film about Tamil genocide in Sri Lanka towards the end of the civil war has been dragged into an unwarranted controversy. A popular Malayalm daily quoting IB sources reported that the screening of the movie which the organizers say was well advertised was actually a secret meeting for regrouping of the LTTE. The state police immediately launced an investigation. "It is very strange. We do not know how it happened. The newspaper tells us that the IB asked them whether they knew about such a programme and thats how they reported it. But how come the IB did not ask us about the programme and asked the media? And how did the paper give such distorted information to the public?" said Elizabeth Philip, Organizer, Pedestrian Pictures. At a press conference attended by social activists and senior journalists in the city the organizers raised many such questions.  "I don’t know why this screening has shocked the establishment here. It is extremely unfortunate. Sections of the press and the police owe an explanation to the filmmaker," M G Radhakrishnan, senior journalist.  According to IBN Live the police said they are only trying to find out whether the report was true.  "There was a discussion after the movie screening. We want to find out who were present. Whether there was anybody from outside the state or country. There is nothing wrong in screening a documentary as long as it doesn’t affect the country’s integrity," said Ajith Kumar, Commissioner of Police in Trivandrum (Island : 3 December 2010).

Submission to the Lessons Learnt & Reconciliation Commission by Dr Sudath Gunasekara - I do not know whether the content of this submission will be directly relevant to the mandate of your Commission. Nevertheless deliberately I have attempted to look at your mission from a broader perspective without confining it to the so-called ethnic conflict that is being widely debated at the moment. Looking at the proceedings of your Commission so far, I think my submission wants be out of place either. In this note what I have tried is to look at the root causes that have brought about the present unfortunate situation in this country. Because I strongly believe that it is only by treating the cause of the disease rather than the symptom, as we normally do, we can find the remedy to this chronic malady.  Therefore I hope my submission will make it possible for your Commission to perceive your noble mission in a broader perspective so that you will be able to recommend some long lasting solutions to take his country out of the present mess (LankaWeb : 3 December 2010).

Is the LTTE re-grouping in Kerala? - A documentary screened a few days back at a hall in the heart of Trivandrum city has sparked suspicion that the LTTE might be regrouping in parts of Kerala.The film exhibitors were questioned by the Kerala Police who fear that it could be a garb for the outfit to regroup.Mullaiteevu Saga, a film about Tamil genocide in Sri Lanka towards the end of the civil war has been dragged into an unwarranted controversy. A popular Malayalm daily quoting IB sources reported that the screening of the movie which the organizers say was well advertised was actually a secret meeting for regrouping of the LTTE. The state police immediately launced an investigation (IBN Live ; 3 December 2010)..

Miliband’s Comments On Sri Lanka Leaked

Tamil's Grievances ......? Blood Crap - By Malin Abeyatuna, Melbourne, Australia - The Tamils originally started with 50-50 cry led by GG Ponnabalam and his clan in early 1940s. G.G.Ponnambalam’s 50-50 cry demanded that 50% of the legislator to be allocated to Sinhalese which comprised almost 80% of the population and the balance 50% to be allocated to the minorities which the major component was Tamils. However, he couldn’t neither convince Soulbury Commision nor had the support of the Muslim leaders. Then the Tamils brought the language issue when in 1956 Sinhala was made the official language. Sinhala majority has always been fair by the minorities and subsequently made Tamil Language also an official language. Now the Tamil leaders were looking for some reason for bickering as they could not bring the language issue anymore to fight against the Sinhala majority governments. Then they came out with another complaint that the Tamils are being discriminated. However, the Tamil leaders who said that they were discriminated couldn’t substantiate their allegations as they found more Tamils are employed in the Government and private sector and in plantation sector in relation to their population. They found that Tamils are holding very high posts in the public and private sector. The irony is that even one time Attorney General  Sivapasupathy has also be claiming that the Tamils were discriminated when he was holding one of the highest public sector positions. They found that more Tamils own businesses and property than the Sinhalese in the Sinhala areas .So, they could hardly  prove that the Tamils were discriminated. When this allegations was brought, the top hierarchy of Bank of Ceylon, Hatton National Bank and Commercial Bank were Tamils, Attorney General, Chief Auditors, Chief Justices, Permanent secretaries, high Commissioners and Ambassadors were  mostly Tamils in proportion with the population. When they couldn’t use this discrimination slogan any more, then they started  to call “Tamil Aspirations”. Aspirations are infinitive and will never stop at one point. Every nation and nationalities have aspirations and it’s not confined to Tamils only. Even Sinhalese have aspirations. The Muslims, Malays and Burghers have aspirations. Even the once primitive Veddah clan has also aspirations. Since  “Aspirations” is a common denomination to every nationality and every ethnic group, then the Tamil leaders turned to another slogan calling “Tamil Grievances” (Sri Lanka News Online ; 2 December 2010).

WikiLeaks: David Miliband ‘championed aid to Sri Lanka to win votes of Tamils in UK’ - David Miliband championed aid to Sri Lanka during last year’s humanitarian crisis to win the support of expatriate Tamils living in key Labour marginal seats, one of his own Foreign Office staff claimed. Tim Waite, a Foreign Office team leader on Sri Lanka, was quoted in a leaked US Embassy cable explaining why the then foreign secretary was lavishing so much attention on the island’s plight. "Waite said that much of (the government) and ministerial attention to Sri Lanka is due to the ‘very vocal’ Tamil diaspora in the UK, numbering over 300,000, who have been protesting in front of parliament since 6 April," wrote Richard Mills, a political officer at the US Embassy in London. "He said that with UK elections on the horizon and many Tamils living in Labour constituencies with slim majorities, the government is paying particular attention to Sri Lanka, with Miliband recently remarking to Waite that he was spending 60 per cent of his time at the moment on Sri Lanka." Mr Mills sent the cable to Washington in May 2009, at a time when more than 1,000 civilians per month were being killed as the 26-year civil war neared its end. On April 29, a few days before the cable was sent, the foreign secretary visited Sri Lanka with his French opposite number, Bernard Kouchner. He told Parliament the trip had been "to highlight the need to bring the conflict to an end in a way that minimises further civilian casualties; to press the case for the humanitarian relief effort to be ratcheted up, as the UN and EU have been calling for, and to make clear the need for a long-term political settlement that meets the aspirations of all communities in Sri Lanka." (Island : 2 December 2010).

Govt. to prosecute those involved in LTTE demos - Following allegations that UNP MP Jayalath Jayawardena and NSSP leader Dr. Wickramabahu Karunaratne were behind the anti-Sri Lankan protests in London, when President Mahinda Rajapaksa arrived there, the government is planning to take legal action against those who participated in the LTTE demonstrations.  Addressing the media at the Police Headquarters, Director General of Media Centre for National Security Lakshman Hulugalle said that the government was in the process of collecting information about such incidents and would institute legal action against the culprits. He said MPs had to defend the Sri Lankan Constitution and protect the unitary status of the country. MPs took oaths pledging they would not directly or indirectly, in or outside Sri Lanka, support, espouse, promote, finance, encourage or advocate the establishment of a separate state within the territory of Sri Lanka, according to Article 157 read together with Article 161 (d) (iii) and the 7th schedule to the Constitution, Hulugalle said adding that as Sri Lankan citizens they also could not violate the Constitution. Hulugalle said it was unfortunate that at a time Sri Lanka was trying to bring about national reconciliation following the conclusion of a protracted war, some MPs were instigating anti-Sri Lankan protests and posing a threat to national unity. He said the objective of those who backed the LTTE led protests was to starve the country of foreign investment by tarnishing its image. They were active in several foreign capitals, he said (Island : 2 December 2010).

Wikileaks and US Ambassador Butenis - by Ranjith Soysa - The Island ‘s editorial on Wikileaks hit the nail right on the head in exposing double standards of the West trying to maintain its hegemony over geo politics. If some of the political leaders and the the media including NGO’s like International Crisis Group can depend on spurious stories filed on ‘war crimes’ etc in Sri Lanka and continue to throw mud at Sri Lanka and her people, it is strange how the US leaders are attempting to justify their savage foreign policy adventures and misadventures by crucifying Wikileaks. Recently when questioned about the US citizen Rudrakumaran and his organization’s attempt to promote LTTE’s agenda in USA , US Ambassador Butenis defended "the high moral" ground of USA as usual having to balance between national security and constitutional liberties. However, Wikileaks and US actions in many international theaters of political activity clearly show that US is capable of employing discriminative practices contrary to Butenis’ s position. The role of the former US Ambassador Blake in promoting anti-Sri Lanka , pro-separatist activities even after his departure to USA directly affects the national security of Sri Lanka but, can be justified by Butenis and her advisers as constitutional right of the USA! But, if USA is obliged to follow UN resolutions on foreign terrorist organizations and her own law on the LTTE there is no way to stop Rudrakumaran’s organization as funds are collected in the USA to support a movement to topple the elected Government of Sri Lanka and create an ethnic enclave using obviously non-democratic means (Island : 2 December 2010).  (Re-produced in Sri Lanka News Online).

LTTE rump’s protest against President MR a flop – Govt. - A senior spokesman for the Presidential Secretariat said that an estimated 300 plus Sri Lankan Tamil expatriates and their supporters in the UK had been involved in the protest at the Arrivals Point at London’s Heathrow Airport, UK on Monday (Nov. 29) night to protest against the arrival of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. President Rajapaksa is on a special visit to address the Oxford Union, and also hold discussions with political leaders.  The spokesman told The Island that demonstrators had failed in their attempt to make a show of their opposition to President Rajapaksa, as the Sri Lankan leader had left the airport through the VIP arrival point.  "They stayed shouting anti-Sri Lankan, anti-Mahinda Rajapaksa and pro-LTTE slogans and displaying pro-LTTE banners for several hours before and after the arrival of the flight with the President around 10.00 p.m. on Monday night. Passengers who arrived on several fights on Monday night and those who had come to meet them at the Arrivals Point showed considerable displeasure at the obstruction caused by the demonstrators," the official said (Island : 1 December 2010).

TAMIL’S GRIEVANCES……? BLOODY CRAP - by Malin Abeyatunge -  The Tamils originally started with 50-50 cry led by GG Ponnabalam and his clan in early 1940s. G.G.Ponnambalam’s 50-50 cry demanded that 50% of the legislator to be allocated to Sinhalese which comprised almost 80% of the population and the balance 50% to be allocated to the minorities which the major component was Tamils. However, he couldn’t neither convince Soulbury Commision nor had the support of the Muslim leaders. Then the Tamils brought the language issue when in 1956 Sinhala was made the official language. Sinhala majority has always been fair by the minorities and subsequently made Tamil Language also an official language. Now the Tamil leaders were looking for some reason for bickering as they could not bring the language issue anymore to fight against the Sinhala majority governments. Then they came out with another complaint that the Tamils are being discriminated. However, the Tamil leaders who said that they were discriminated couldn’t substantiate their allegations as they found more Tamils are employed in the Government and private sector and in plantation sector in relation to their population. They found that Tamils are holding very high posts in the public and private sector (LankaWeb : 1 December 2010).

Miliband’s Comments On Sri Lanka Leaked - In the latest release from Wikileaks, former UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband is reported to have said that he was spending 60% of his time on Sri Lanka, trying to satisfy the Tamil voter base in the UK. This voter base was represented by hundreds of thousands of protestors in London at the time, many of whom were flying LTTE flags and supporting that banned terrorist organization. In a report from Foreign Office Sri Lanka team leader Tim Waite, it was said that: (Sunday Leader).

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What was really happening in Sri Lanka was that a blood thirsty racist group led by some misled Tamils called LTTE was terrorizing against the Government of Sri Lanka and its people irrespective of their ethnicity with an intention of carving out a separate state. There is no conflict as such between Sinhalese and Tamil communities in Sri Lanka. In fact, the majority of the Tamil community lives in peace and harmony among the Sinhalese population through out the country apart from the Northern part of Sri Lanka. The entire Sinhalese and the Muslims population who lived in the Northern area for centuries were either killed or chased away completely by the LTTE Tamil Tiger terrorists. At the moment, not a single Sinhalese or Muslim is living in Jaffna, but, many thousands of Tamils are living in Colombo in peace with the other communities. Based on 2001 census, the Tamil population in Colombo district is 12.1% (see 2001 census). So, who is discriminated ? Tamils or Sinhalese? Do you need more evidence ?

 

Worlds' most ruthless megalomaniac Terrorist Leader Prabhakaran shot dea by the Sri Lanka heroic Security Forces

(for details click here). Video by Sri Lanka Army

Please re-visit news, from 15 to 23 May 2009.

Welfare Projects

Sponsor a child of a war hero deceased or disabled while in action to protect Sri Lanka

http://www.virudarudiriya.com


Api Wenuwen Api

http://www.apiwenuwenapi.com/ is the official web site of the Api Wenuwen Api fund raising campaign. The Api Wenuwen Api Fund is a collaboration between the The Ministry of Defence and the Central Bank of Sri Lanka to build 50,000 houses for the serving Tri-Service personnel. The gift of housing is one of the best and most tangible ways to demonstrate our gratitude and appreciation. This is the time for all Sri Lankans to support our brothers and sisters who are committed to bringing peace to our motherland Sri Lanka. All contributions from the campaign and fund raising events will be donated to Api Wenuwen Api Housing Project in Sri Lanka.


Thawalama Development Foundation

No. 5, Rajakeeya Mawatha, Colombo 7, Sri Lanka.

The Thawalama Development Foundation (TDF) was established on 1994 April 25th to support and assist in the implementation of Project Thawalama approved by the Ministry of Defense on 1994 January 14th. http://thawalama.org

          Sri Lankan Web TV "ThrimanaTV" brings News and Entertainment from Sri Lanka and Australia

                 

Karuna claimed Norway gave LTTE money

The ungrateful son, Rahul Gandhi, shall mind his own business in India and leave Sri Lanka alone

Please visit the website of Rajiv Gandhi assassination (Click here)

 
    
 

Despite LTTE listed as a banned outfit in UK British police turned blind eye while Tamil protesters waved LTTE flags

 

 

Open letter to US Ambassador to Sri Lanka

 

 

       

Political Settlement for a Terrorist Problem ??? 

 

Read more about the 13th Amendment to the Constitution)

 

 

A "Token of Appreciation" from Prabhakaran to Solheim or from Solheim to Prabhakaran?

 

Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith making his submissions to the Commission

 

 

Read more about the 13th Amendment

 

 
   

United Nation's So-called War Crime Probe

  

 

International Crisis Group: Report on Sri Lanka

 
    
  

United Nation's move to appoint an expert panel to advise Secretary General on Sri Lanka is ‘totally uncalled for and unwarranted.’

 

How much did LTTE pay Sillyband to speak at Global Tamil Forum?

 

British FM David Milliband is back to his third grade gimmicks against Sri Lanka. Please look after your back yard without poking your stinking fingers into Sri Lankan Affairs.  Sri Lanka has had enough of you and your white clan. We do not care you guys anymore. So, Shut up.

 

Bogus Asylum Seekers

Tamil Diaspora is making a fresh attempt to undermine Sri Lanka by organising large scale human smuggling operations targeting developed countries, particularly Australia and Canada.

None of the three vessels carrying Sri Lankan Tamils, which had been intercepted by the Canadians and Indonesians on high seas during the past fortnight, originated in Sri Lanka.

Conspiracy by Arms Manufacturing Western Nations

 

Western Arms Manufacturers need battlefields to sell their Arms. An estimated 500,000 individuals dies in small arms-conflict every year, approximately one death per minute. It is estimated that yearly, over 1 trillion dollars are spent on military expenditure worldwide.

Development of North and East Districts in Sri Lanka

 

 

Welfare of Internally Displaced Tamil Persons (IDP)

 

Click here to understand how much effort Sri Lanka Government has made for welfare of Tamil civilians displaced (IDP) during the war 

 

Are we serious about a solution based on Indo-Lanka Accord ?

Read more about the 13th Amendment

 

LTTE Tamil Tiger Atrocities

LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorist's recent Atrocities

Caution : The images shown in this web page exposing the atrocities of the LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorists may be found disturbing by some people. Proceed at your own caution.

LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorist's Child Soldiers

 

Reports Issued by the Norwegians Against Terrorism

Suicide Bomb Attacks by LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorists in Sri Lanka

 

LTTE's Links with Other Terrorist Groups`

LTTE's links with other terrorists organisations (Sri Lanka News Online)

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Disclaimer: Comments, views and opinions contained in this website are personal reflections only and do not necessarily reflect the views of Sri Lanka News Online in Australia. Sri Lanka News Online in Australia offers the contents of this website without charge and gives links to other sites in good faith, but does not necessarily endorse the views and opinions expressed within this website or the links thus provided. Neither Sri Lanka News Online in Australia nor the individual authors of any material on this Web site accept responsibility for any loss or damage, however caused (including through negligence), which you may directly or indirectly suffer arising out of your use of or reliance on information contained on or accessed through this Web site. Responsibility and liability for using comments, views and opinions presented in this website rests solely with the user and not with Sri Lanka News Online in Australia. © 2009-2014
What is really happening in Sri Lanka today is that a blood thirsty racist group led by some misled Tamils called LTTE is terrorizing against the Government of Sri Lanka and its people irrespective of their ethnicity with an intention of carving out a separate state. There is no conflict as such between Sinhalese and Tamil communities in Sri Lanka. In fact, the majority of the Tamil community lives in peace and harmony among the Sinhalese population through out the country apart from the Northern part of Sri Lanka. The entire Sinhalese and the Muslims population who lived in the Northern area for centuries were either killed or chased away completely by the LTTE Tamil Tiger terrorists. At the moment, not a single Sinhalese or Muslim is living in Jaffna, but, many thousands of Tamils are living in Colombo in peace with the other communities. Based on 2001 census, the Tamil population in Colombo district is 12.1% (see 2001 census). So, who is discriminated ? Tamils or Sinhalese? Do you need more evidence ?
Caution: Images shown on this web site exposing LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorist atrocities maybe disturbing for some users. Please proceed at your own discretion.
The United States' top intelligence agency, Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) says that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) is the most dangerous and deadly extremist organization in the world. The official website of FBI in its tops story said that LTTE is far more dangerous terrorists outfit than al Queda, Hezbullah or even HAMAS. Read more...

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