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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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Saturday, 12 June 2010 07:13 AM 

 

India Sri Lanka Ferry Service To Resume

Charity Musical evening & CD Launch by Ruvinie Dunuwille

At Rowville Secondary College, Humphrey's Way, Rowville (Melway 82 F1). 

Duets With Ranil Mallawarachchi, Athula Lewke Bandara, Rohana Karunaratna, Christy Amaranath and Adrian Dunuwille. Music by Camaron Colabage with Tharanga. Tickets $15. (click here for details of the musical show).

Contact: Ruvinie Dunuwille +61 432 226 772  Email ruvinie.dunuwille@y7mail.com

Home Tel No + 61 3 8339 7591

Rohitha Welmillage +61 3 9209 2923

Watch the Video Clip in U-Tube

For details, please visit Sri Lanka Events in Australia.

 

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has pledged to work with the Sri Lanka Government

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

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Read more about the 13th Amendment

About Time UN’s Naveen Pillai’s Calls To Re-Investigate The Government Are Stifled As A Wasted Effort! - Insight By Sunil Kumar May 31st,2010 Once again the United Nations human rights chief Naveen Pillai is stirring the pot of dissent against the Sri Lankan Administration of H.E. Mahinda Rajapaksha to visibly attract the attention of the International Community and World Powers on a matter which her superior Ban Ki Moon has tried in similar perspective but has to all intents and purposes not realised his objectives. Pillai has maintained in a most obnoxious as well as disconcerting manner given her very apparent conflict of interest and personal bias on the basis of her Tamil ethnicity that Sri Lanka needed an international probe into the Government’s final offensive against Tamil Tiger rebels last year, a matter which has more or less been examined in detail and laid to rest by the sources that matter (LankaWeb ; 31 May 2010).

Ratnam released by Court - Film Producer and Director Chandran Ratnam was released without any charges against him by the Gangodawila Magistrate today. Ratnam was arrested by the police last week for allegedly possessing explosive materials in his former residence in Nugegoda. The Gangodawila Magistrate released Ratnam after he produced a license issued by the Defence Ministry permitting him to keep explosives to be used in films. The house belonged to a Rosy Abeywickrema and had been rented out from 2006 to 2008 to be used as the office of Film Location Service owned by Ratnam. The landlady when questioned by the police said the company Film Location Service had rented it out for two years and that she went into occupation last year. Ratnam said when the office was shifted he had instructed his production executive to remove the items to the new office but it had not been done. When the case was taken up today he produced a letter issued by the Assistant Controller for Explosives attached to Defence Ministry permitting him to keep the explosives in his possession for use in filmmaking (Daily Mirroor ; 31 May 2010).

Comprehensive Obstetric Care Unit at Kilinochchi General Hospital declared open - The newly constructed Obstetric Theatre, Labour Room, Special Care Baby Unit(SCBU), Pediatric Ward and Maternity Ward of the Kilinochchi District General Hospital was declared open by Minister for Economic Development Basil Rajapaksa on 27th May. The Kilinochchi district hospital was refurbished at a cost of Rs.13.8 Mn. and Rs. 12.0 Mn worth of medical equipments for the obstetric theatre also provided under the assistance of UNICEF. Five Land Cruiser Vehicles donated by UNICEF were also distributed among the Regional Directors of Health Services of the Northern Province during the same event. Meanwhile, Twenty Motor Cycles and Two Canter type double cap vehicles bought at Rs.12.8 Million under World Bank assisted Health Sector Development Project (HSDP) were also distributed for the Anti Malaria units of the Kilinochchi and Mullaittivu Districts. During the same event, as a measure to strengthen the livelihood of the civilians resettled, ten sewing machines bought by the provincial council were handed over to beneficiaries from Oddusuddan area of Mullaittivu district. The beneficiaries were selected by District Secretary, Mullaittivu, Mrs. Emelida Sugumar (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 31 May 2010).

Tamils protest Salman Khan’s Sri Lanka visit for IIFA function - Members of the Tamil community staged a protest here on Sunday against Bollywood actor Salman Khan’s proposed visit to Sri Lanka for International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards ceremony.  Khan is due to attend the 11th IIFA awards ceremony in Colombo from June 3-5.  “We tried to give him a letter which he did not accept and said that he will attend the award function, so we have burnt photographs here. In case if they attend this function we won’t let his films to release here,” said Sharvana, a protestor.  Earlier, the Tamil community held a similar protest outside actor Amitabh Bachchan’s residence on May 11.  The IIFA 2010 is being viewed in Sri Lanka as a ‘coming out’ platform for a nation that is emerging from 30 years of civil war.   The Tamil film fraternity has also rejected the idea of an Indian film event in Sri Lanka, with popular Tamil actors Rajnikanth, Kamal Hassan, Vijay, Ajith and Surya reportedly declining to take part in the IIFA.  Some 260,000 Tamil refugees, who fled fighting in the waning months of the war with the Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka and held in military-run camps, are in the process of a slow-moving rehabilitation (Entertainment Dailn : 31 May 2010).

Mannar water scheme opened - The Drinking Water Scheme at Pallemunai, Mannar, a project that provides pure drinking water to over 63,600 people was inaugurated last Thursday (27) during a ceremony, headed by Mr. Hiruhiko Karoda, Chairman, Asian Development Bank and Mr. Basil Rajapaksa (MP), Minister of Economic Development. The project funded jointly by the Asian Development Bank, Netherlands Trust Fund and the Government of Sri Lanka is to build 330 houses in the area. In addition, a new surgery and two wards built at Mannar Hospital were also declared open on the same day after laying the foundation stone for a water scheme that carries drinking water from Murunkan up to Pallemunai. The ceremony was attended by Ministers Sarath Amunugama, Rishard Badurdeen, Major General G.A Chandrasiri (Retd), Governor for North, Major General Kamal Gunarathne, Commander Security Forces, Wanni, District Secretaries, Senior State Officials and a large gathering of civilians in the area (sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 31 may 2010).

Discriminatory practices of USAID- An Open letter to U.S. Agency for International Development,44, Galle Road , Colombo 3, Sri Lanka - by Ben Silva,UK. - Media reports indicate that ‘U.S. Government supports IT sector employment opportunities for youth in Eastern Province (29.05.2010 – Asiantribune.com) ‘ Previous reports indicated that USA has offered scholarships for the Youth in the North and East As the North and the East are now occupied by Tamils, (previously the homeland of the Sinhalese and ethnically cleansed by Tamils ) this is open favoritism to Tamils and discrimination against other ethnic groups in Sri Lanka. This I feel is most unfair and displays racism, practiced y USA in their divide and rule policy in various parts of the world. Your discriminatory policies and divide and rule policies are so obvious and transparent. Both the North and the East were previously Sinhala home territory. Tamil racists have ethnically cleaned the North and the East of non Tamils by using violent means. This is not the first time US AID discriminated against the Sinhalese. When thousands of poor Sinhalese are dying of kidney disease as a consequence of consuming water contaminated with toxins, no aid is provided to the poor Sinhalese in the NCP of Sri Lanka. In contrast, USAID provided facilities to improve water quality for non Sinhalese, in the North and the East (Sinhale Hot News : 31 May 2010).

Mr S. Amirthalingam meets husband’s Sinhalese bodyguard after 21 years - Mrs. Mangayarkkarasi Amirthalingam (76), widow of slain Opposition Leader Appapillai Amirthalingam, visited his bodyguard T.A. Nissanka who shot dead three LTTE assassins on July 13, 1989.  She was accompanied by her son Dr. Bahirathan Amirthalingam (51). The family was brought to Colombo by the BBC for a radio documentary.  The mother and the son had come for a holiday to Sri Lanka last Thursday and had met Nissanka after 21 years.  The visit to the house at Ambalapitiya in Kegalle last Saturday by Mrs. Amirthalingam and her son was a heartbreaking scene and those who were present could not hold back the tears.  As Mrs. Amirthalingam saw Nissanka, she had embraced him and had started crying as if meeting a child after a long lone time.  Dr. Amirthlingam too had embraced and hugged as if two brothers had met after a long time.  Nissanka’s wife Mrs. T.A. Shyamila Pramila Kumari had welcomed both visitors who had come to pay gratitude to her husband and had warmly welcomed them.  On July 13, 1989 under the guise of coming for a discussion with Mr. Amirthalingam three armed members of the LTTE entered the two storied house at Bullers road, Colombo the temporary residence of TULF members and had shot Mr. Amirthalingam and the Jaffna District parliamentarian Vettivelu Yogeswaran (Daily Mirror : 31 May 2010).

Lanka rejects foreign probe - Sri Lanka says there should be no hurry in setting up an international probe to investigate the final stages of the war against the LTTE as the government has taken ‘necessary action’ to address human rights allegations. This comes after the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay today maintained that Sri Lanka needed an international probe despite the government having created a post-war reconciliation commission to look into alleged human rights violations. Pillay is quoted as saying, "Based on previous experience and new information, I remain convinced that such objectives would be better served by establishing an independent international accountability mechanism that would enjoy public confidence, both in Sri Lanka and elsewhere." Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwela speaking to Daily Mirror online however noted that Sri Lanka is a sovereign nation, with a government democratically elected by the people and so will address concerns on its own. "Positive comments have been made by many other nations in the steps we have taken and we are now more interested in correcting past mistakes ourselves and we see no hurry in setting up an international probe when we have already taken necessary action in this regard through our reconciliation commission," Minister Rambukwella said. (Daily Mirror online : 31 May 2010).

Mass grave in Kilinochchi - Jaffna District TNA Parliamentarian S. Sritharana claims he has seen a mass grave at Ganeshapuram in Kilinochchil and at least six bodies wrapped in black polythene bags were seen buried in it. The parliamentarian said Kilinochchi District Judge S.Sivakumar and a doctor of the Kilinochchi government hospital visited the scene yesterday with a police team. He said a resident of the area who was cleaning the old toilet pit found the bodies and informed the Grama Niladhari and police. Exhuming of the bodies was postponed for today in the absence of the Judicial Medical Officer (JMO). (Daily Mirror online : 31 May 2010).

A further boost to Commandos in post-LTTE era - Maj. Gen. Shavendra Silva, Colonel of the Commando Regiment says expansion of the elite fighting force is part of overall strategy to meet the LTTE’s conventional military challenge.  Over one year after the defeat of LTTE terrorism, 675 commandos, including 20 officers have joined the elite fighting regiment, which played a pivotal role in the bloody ground offensive. They were among 1,000 personnel, who had joined the Uva-Kuda Oya Commando Training School during the eelam war IV, but by the time they received the coveted maroon beret, the LTTE was history.  Colonel of the Regiment Maj. Gen. Shavendra Silva says those who had failed to achieve the standards set by the Regiment will join other units, while some can be accommodated on administrative duties at Commando Regiments.  In a brief interview with The Island, former General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the 58 Division said that they had never taken 1,000 men to the commando training facility. The maximum number the army had taken previously was 500, he said, adding that they decided to double the intake as part of the rapid expansion of the army (Island ; 31 May 2010).

Tamil diaspora takes on Colombo - Tamil communities and NGOs are getting even with the Sri Lankan government as they try to win international recognition for the cause of a separate state, writes NEVILLE DE SILVA. ONE year after Sri Lanka crushed the military campaign by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam to create a separate Tamil state, the mission for secession has not died with the LTTE leaders. Efforts to relive the dream are continuing beyond Sri Lanka's frontiers through the one million or more Sri Lankan Tamils scattered in countries near and far but mainly in Europe and North America. The inauguration in the US this month of the Transitional Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE), composed representatives from Tamil communities around the globe, is seen as an initial step in trying to win international recognition for the cause of a separate state (Island : 31 may 2010).

Chandran Rutnam to face court in explosives case - Film producer and director Chandran Rutnam, who was detained by Mirihana Police for possession of explosives, would be produced before the Gangodawila Magistrate this morning, police spokesman SSP Prishantha Jayakody said last night. Rutnam, arrested on Wednesday, was remanded by the Magistrate on Thursday. Police said he had failed to produce the Defence Ministry licence to possess explosives. Police recovered 4kg gun powder, seven detonators, 25 rounds of ammunition used for 9mm pistols and 28 rounds of ammunition used for 0.38 mm pistols when they raided a house which had been previously used by his film company, the Film Location Services at Pagoda Road. Members of the Police Intelligence Unit staged the raid, acting on a search warrant issued by court. Sources close to Rutnam said the explosives would have been obtained for the filming of ‘Road to Elephant Pass" which was screened recently (Island ; 31 May 2010).

'No Big Brother; India should treat us like its little sister' - Ten days ago, Sri Lanka marked the first anniversary of its victory over the LTTE. It was a momentous occasion for the man credited with taming the Tigers, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa . But the threat posed by the LTTE has not entirely disappeared as demonstrated by the multi-level security checks at Temple Trees, the president’s residence in Colombo. Rajapaksa talks Tigers, ties with India and why he likes the movie “My Name Is Khan” to Atul Sethi . Excerpts: (Times of India).

The healing touch of our festivals… The opening of the A9 road has paved the way for economic rejuvenation in the North. Development and resettlement will be the focus of an important meeting of nine Jaffna MPs to be held at the district secretariat next Monday (June 7).  All parliamentarians from the district, including those representing the TNA and the UNP, have been invited for the key talks to be presided over by Northern Governor G A Chandrasiri and Minister Douglas Devananda.  The meeting takes place amid a growing belief that Tamils, in the long run, will be thankful to the security forces for eliminating the LTTE scourge.  Last week’s Vesak festival in Jaffna was a major draw. More than 200,000 pilgrims from various parts of the country took part in the celebrations, according to military and civil officials.  The spiritual observances at the Jaffna Naga Vihara began in the early hours of the morning on Vesak Day and continued till late in the night.  The Vesak Zone in Jaffna was the focal point for residents as well as visitors from the south. The zone covered Jaffna Fort, Duraiappa Stadium and Jaffna library areas and a mega ‘dansala’ set up near the Fort, catered to a large number of residents and visitors.  People from every nook and corner in the peninsula enjoyed the Vesak celebrations, officials said amid claims in some circles that the festival was ‘imposed’ on the Northern residents (Island : 31 May 2010).

The drivers and scenarios in post-war Sri Lanka - By Sumanasiri Liyanage - Jaffna: Property destroyed by war - My focus in this essay is not what happened in the past but what can be envisioned for the near future particularly with regard to the national question in Sri Lanka. The security forces comprehensively defeated the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) one year ago. However, the transformation of peace writ small that was achieved in May 2009 to peace writ large has yet to be achieved and the steps taken in that direction are, in my opinion, inadequate. Although the simultaneous operation of so many variables in complex situations makes predictions almost impossible in social science, it is possible to identify possible future scenarios through the analysis of key drivers that undergird future changes. Here, I identify four key drivers and four scenarios, though one is a very remote possibility (Island : 31 May 2010).

Recruitment scaled down but still higher than pre-2005 level - Maj. Gen. Prasad Samarasinghe says a fresh opportunity will be given to deserters to leave the army in June. With the conclusion of the war, the Army has sharply scaled down recruitment to fighting elements, though thousands will have to be taken in to maintain the existing strength of over 200,000 officers and men. Responding to a query by The Island, Military Spokesman Maj. Gen. Prasad Samarasinghe said that the recruitment in the post-LTTE era would have to be more than the pre-2006 period. He pointed out that the Army had had a strength of about 120,000 before the outbreak of eelam war IV in mid 2006. During Gen Sarath Fonseka’s tenure as Commander, the army recruited over 80,000, mostly to the infantry to meet the conventional LTTE threat. The Navy and the SLAF, too, increased their strength, while the government authorised the Civil Defence Force to double its strength. Maj. Gen. Samarasinghe said recruitment would continue to retain the existing strength (Island : 31 may 2010).

Tri-Star jobs for 1,500 LTTE combatants

Tiger Propaganda lives on - A reply to Sam Thampapillai’s “Sri Lanka’s bitter peace one year on” by Asoka Subhawikrama, Australia. Sam Thampapillai’s emotive plea (Sri Lanka’s bitter peace one year on,21st May)on behalf of Tamils is a clever piece of writing to draw the sympathy of an unsuspecting Australian public. It contains some truths, many lies and the rest skilfully covered in substantiated allegations. Thampapillai’s article is cunningly structured to reach the two minute attention span of the average Australian and win their sympathy for a sinister purpose. The core objective of the article is to condition the mind of the Australian public to accept the illegal boat arrivals of so-called Tamil refugees. The Tamil Tigers’ brutal terrorist war could never have had enough steam to run thirty bloody years without the moral and material support of the Tamil Diaspora. Over a million Tamils migrated to the West on bogus claims of persecution after the riots in 1983. This Diaspora, spread across US, Canada, UK, Europe and Australia, formed the external arm of the Tamil Tiger War. They raised funds from gullible sympathisers, coerced their reluctant compatriots for donations, coordinated the procurement of arms and,most of all, carried out a relentless propaganda campaign. The need for, and the importance of, a Tamil Diaspora in the West was well understood by the early Tamil Separatists. Even as far back as the 1960s, the Tamil activists were urging Tamils to migrate to the West. They knew to succeed in their cause the West has to be on their side. West’s historical guilt in colonisation and occupation of other people’s land made them an easy target to win sympathy. Tamil Tigers had to have a Diaspora to spread the propaganda, to form voting blocks in marginal electorates so as to get vote hungry politicians to mouth their misinformation (Sri Lanka News Online ; 30 May 2010).

India ups stakes; wants greater presence here - Asks for missions in Hambantota and Jaffna in addition to Colombo and Kandy -  India has sought clearance from Sri Lanka to open two Deputy High Commission offices, one in Jaffna and another in Hambantota, in a sudden decision to upgrade its previous request for only the opening of a consulate in Jaffna. The request has been the subject of a diplomatic dialogue between Colombo and New Delhi. External Affairs Ministry sources say the matter is to figure at talks in New Delhi between President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh during the Sri Lankan President’s three-day state visit to India – his first since his re-election in January this year. At present, besides a fully-fledged high commission in Colombo, India has a Deputy High Commissioner’s office in Kandy. This DHC office was to service the needs of people of Indian origin including plantation labour, but after the completion of the Sirima-Shastri (Repatriation) Pact and the absence of both Indian citizens and stateless persons, the deputy high commission has continued to function (Sunday Times : 30 May 2010).

New project in North to provide electricity - The Government has unveiled a new project to provide electricity to the war-torn Northern region with the assistance from the Asian Development Bank and the Government of Japan.  President of the Asian Development Bank Haruhiko Kuroda participated in this event as the Chief Guest. It is a notable feature that he undertook his first visit to Sri Lanka to participate in this project which is assisted by his Bank. Minister Basil Rajapaksa inaugurated the project at a ceremony held recently in Kilinochchi.  Speaking at the ceremony Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka opined that the government was giving top priority to rebuilding the damaged infrastructure in the North and East. It hopes to strengthen relations between the North and the South of the country through the restoration of the Jaffna-Vavuniya main power line devastated by the terrorists.  The electricity supply will be extended in two phases, one from Vavuniya to Kilinochchi, and the other from Kilinochchi to Chunnakkam in Jaffna. The Vavuniya-Kilinochchi phase is funded by the Japanese government while the Asian Development Bank (ADB) is to fund the second phase of the project from Kilinochchi-Jaffna.  The project is expected to be completed in 2012. The project carried out under the 'Uthuru Wasanthaya' programme is estimated to cost 2 billion rupees.  Several Parliamentarians and many foreign diplomats were among those present (sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 30 May 2010).

Private Sri Lankan firm to employ former female LTTE cadres - A private apparel company here has decided to employ 1,200 former female LTTE cadres who have completed their rehabilitation programme. Tri Star Apparel Pte Ltd at Ratmalana near the capital will employ over 1,200 such people in its factories, with the first batch of 150 girls to be employed from tomorrow. Apart from their salary, these girls will also receive benefits like cost of living allowances, overtime payments and hostel accommodation. They will also be provided food, life insurance covers, housing loan, distress loans, marriage loans, medical facilities and entertainment facilities, the state owned Sunday Observer reported. Chairman of Tri Star, Deshabandu Kumar Devapura set up the first manufacturing plant in the Eastern Province, Trincomalee in an area formerly controlled by LTTE rebels thus creating over 1,000 job opportunities for people of all ethnic groups (Times of India : 30 May 2010).

Mullaitivu's agriculture to be developed - Mullaitivu gets six million rupees to uplift the agricultural industry within the District. Deputy Minister Jagath Pushpakumara visited the District recently and inquired into the agricultural activities. He had a special discussion with officials of the Agrarian Services and Agricultural Departments at the Oddusudan Divisional Secretariat. The Deputy Minister handed over six million rupees to the Mullaitivu District Secretary to be used for the processing of land in the area. He also presented cheques for 500 thousand rupees each for the maintenance of Agrarian Banks in Pannikulam, Thunukkai and Oddusudan (sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 30 May 2010).

People of Mannar will have pure potable water - The civilians in Mannar will have access to pure drinking water. The first stage of the mega scheme was declared open at Pallimunai. Civilians who were displaced from their places of origin due to LTTE terrorism have now returned to their homes due to the strength provided to them by the Government. They are now in the process of improving their livelihoods. However they are confronted with a major problem, that is finding water in the dry zonal area. It is as a solution to this issue that the Government has embarked on a massive project under the "Uthuru Wasanthaya" programme to meet the drinking water needs of this area. The opening of the first stage of this scheme took place with the participation of many Parliamentarians including Minister Basil Rajapaksa. Assistance came from the Asian Development Bank. The expenditure incurred was 30 million rupees. Asian Development Bank President Haruhiko Kuroda who joined on this occasion pledged continued assistance to Sri Lanka to improve livelihoods of the people. He said they would also continue support for poverty alleviation. Foreign Diplomats, Governors and Security Chiefs were among those who graced the occasion (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 30 May 2010).

EDITORIAL: Patrick J. O'Donoghue // Eva Golinger and the Tiger Tamils - VHeadline News Editor Patrick J. O'Donoghue writes: I couldn't believe what I read in the Caracas CC blatt! - According to Eva Golinger, the Tamil Tigers of Sri Lanka have close links with the CIA and therefore, the Venezuelan government should ignore them and rather connect to the legitimate opposition in Sri Lanka.Eva Golinger is editor-in-chief of the government's mouthpiece, 'El Correo del Orinoco' (in English) and therefore her opinion on foreign affairs carries weight, especially since she has made US state documents available to the general public with salient and penetrating commentaries. I just hope that Chavez doesn't take her word for it on the Tamils and is properly briefed by Foreign Minister for Asia, Temir Porras before entering the minefield of Sri Lanka politics. On Thursday, VHeadline.com broke the story originating in the Tamil "The Daily Mirror," which did not mention the (Tamil) Canadian Hart group that visited Caracas to take up contact with the Foreign Ministry seeking recognition of a Tamil organization in exile.Golinger's charges are that Washington negotiated with the Tigers for a US military base in a future independent Tamil Republic (Vheadlines in Venuzuela : 23 May 2010).

Tri-Star jobs for 1,500 LTTE combatants - The government struggling to find employment for ex-LTTE combatants has been relieved by Desamanya Kumar Devapura, Chairman of Tri-Star Apparel Exporters (Pvt) Limited who has expressed readiness to recruit upto 1,500 currently held in military custody.  Devapura will shortly establish a training facility at Vavuniya to accommodate one-time combatants.  Although the war ended in last May on the banks of the Nanthikadal lagoon with the capture of about 12,000 LTTE cadres, there had not been a large scale initiative to find employment for them before Devapura stepped in.  Former Justice and Law Reforms Minister Milinda Moragoda spearheaded a government strategy which paved the way for the business community as well as the international community to help in rehabilitated LTTE cadres. He went to the extent of involving the All Ceylon Hindu Congress in the process, thereby giving the Tamil community confidence in the government.  Addressing the media at the Nippon Hotel yesterday, Devapura said that the first batch would join the company tomorrow (May 31) as trainees at his main factory at Thelawela Road, Ratmalana (Sunday Island : 30 May 2010).

UNICEF renovates hospitals in former LTTE-held areas - A year after the defeat of the LTTE, the United Nations Children’s Fund is actively assisting in reviving the hospitals and health facilities in the war ravaged areas of North once dominated by the LTTE. The UNICEF is refurbishing and renovating four Gramodaya Health Centres in the Northern Province and is also modernising and equipping the obstetric and paediatric units of the Mullaithivu General Hospital. The UNICEF on Thursday re-established emergency obstetric and paediatric care at the Kilinochchi General Hospital damaged during the conflict. In a special event, Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa, along with UNICEF Representative Philippe Duamelle, re-opened the new facility.The hospital is now equipped to handle complicated obstetric procedures and allow pregnant mothers to deliver their babies safely, says a UNICEF release. Besides providing assistance for the operation theatre, labour room, maternity and paediatric wards that were refurbished and equipped, UNICEF will also help provide a special baby care unit in the Kilinochchi hospital. As a result, pregnant women, mothers and children will no longer need to travel long distances to access specialised health care, the release said. “This project will serve the health needs of thousands of women and children now returning back to their homes”  (Sunday Observer : 30 May 2010).

Grievance first, devolution later (if at all) - by Malinda Seneviratne - Kalana Senaratne, in an article titled ‘Will there be peace before death?’ published in www.groundviews.org, begins an interesting essay on the 13th Amendment with the obvious preamble that the end of a war is followed by the resurfacing of problems that could not be resolved through the use of force. He offers that the answer to political problems rests in our own attitudes and perceptions, and in our ability to compromise. He singles out two issues; that of ‘devolution of power’ and ‘promotion and protection of human rights and equality’; as challenges that confront us and ones on which people hold strong and uncompromising views. He is correct. These have been talked-to-death issues over at least two decades and the two have often been conflated for reasons of political convenience. They can be but are not necessarily related. Kalana makes this distinction. He dwells at length on the issue of devolution, picking the debate over the 13th Amendment as an illustrative case of the condition he laments - i.e. perceptions and (in)ability to compromise. I am yet to come across as clear and accurate a delineation of the contending positions, pointing to the fault lines that have time and again caused fissures in discussion and crumbled compromise when it comes to devolution. Being an opponent of the 13th Amendment and devolution along the lines proposed by both Eelamists and their academic and other apologists, I will focus on the issues that Kalana raises regarding objections to the 13th (Island : 30 May 2010).

Large crowds throng Vesak Zone in Jaffna - Nearly 200,000 people in the Jaffna district and the outstations visited the special Vesak Zone organised by the Sri Lanka Army, during the past two days, officials of the Jaffna Security Forces Headquarters said. Most of the visitors were youth.  The Vesak celebrations held after a lapse of many years in the Jaffna peninsula are organised by the Sri Lanka Army under the theme Yapa Patunai Daham Amawai from May 27 - 30. A special Vesak Zone was set up in and around the Jaffna Library, the Fort and the Duraiappah Stadium. In addition all battalions of the Sri Lanka Army deployed in the Jaffna district organised lantern exhibitions and dansalas and many other vesak celebrations in their areas.  “We have a very peaceful situation in Jaffna,” Northern Province Governor Major General G.A. Chandrasiri said. He said that 35,402 people visited Jaffna from the outstations on May 27, while there were 23,657 visitors on May 28. As of yesterday 26,380 of the local tourists had left the Jaffna district.  The Governor said that there was not a single incident reported although there was heavy vehicular traffic in the town area and the holiday season was peaceful. The Sri Lanka police deployed an additional 600 police officers in the Jaffna district to control traffic in the town and at all tourist attractions.  The Government is providing all basic facilities to visitors including clean water and sanitary facilities. Due to the high tide there was a slight delay in boat transportation to the Nagadeepa Temple (Sunday Observer ; 30 May 2010).

War crimes allegations and the ‘international’ Crisis Group - By Lasanda Kurukulasuriya - The latest war crimes report on Sri Lanka has come from the relatively new political formation that calls itself the “International Crisis Group.” The ICG first came into Sri Lanka’s media spotlight in 2007 when its president Gareth Evans, a former Foreign Minister of Australia, delivered the annual Neelan Tiruchelvam memorial lecture in Colombo. The ICG’s war crimes allegations one year after the war’s end, and its demands for an “international inquiry,” are generating as much controversy as its advocacy of the doctrine of “R2P” (“Responsibility to Protect”) did at that time. Evans then wanted the Sri Lankan government to call off its military action against the LTTE, arguing that the Tamil Tigers could not be defeated militarily and predicting an imminent genocidal bloodbath that, according to the ICG, could justify unilateral foreign intervention (not excluding the possibility of coercive military action) to prevent it from happening. The argument was that Sri Lanka was a situation “ripe for R2P.” (Sunday Times : 30 May 2010).

US Secy. Of State pleased with Lankan efforts - U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had praised Sri Lanka for the efforts taken to establish political and ethnic reconciliation, when the Minister of External Affairs Professor G.L Peiris met her for discussions in Washington D.C. Speaking on the establishment of the Lessons Learned and Reconciliation Commission Secretary Clinton had said, “I think the steps that have been taken by the Sri Lankan Government are commendable and we are supporting that effort.” Clinton had praised the resettlement of internally displaced people in the North. “There has been tremendous progress and many thousands of such internally displaced persons have returned home”, she said. She had acknowledged that 297,000 people had been resettled so far. Professor Peiris had said that the government will resettle the remaining 45,000 people within the next three months. The minister had appraised her of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s planned constitutional reforms. He had explained that the Tamil leadership would be included in the discussions on how to create the reforms. The Secretary of State had acknowledged that the country faces daunting tasks in future, and that the government will have to take ‘ambitious but necessary’ steps to successfully face those challenges. Furthermore, Mrs. Clinton had stated that the United States will stand by Sri Lanka and support the country’s political and economic initiatives in a spirit of partnership. “We are still providing humanitarian assistance, but we are also going far beyond humanitarian assistance in order to repair schools, help with infrastructure and to create jobs.”(Nation : 30 May 2010).

'No Big Brother; India should treat us like its little sister' - Ten days ago, Sri Lanka marked the first anniversary of its victory over the LTTE. It was a momentous occasion for the man credited with taming the Tigers, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa . But the threat posed by the LTTE has not entirely disappeared as demonstrated by the multi-level security checks at Temple Trees, the president’s residence in Colombo. Rajapaksa talks Tigers, ties with India and why he likes the movie “My Name Is Khan” to Atul Sethi . Excerpts: It’s been a year since the defeat of the LTTE. Why do you think the movement failed? Everyone knows what was going on in the movement and the reasons for its failure are evident. It was on a self-destruct path. Their demand for a separate Eelam was always out of the question. We couldn’t have allowed that. But more importantly, the violence and bloodshed that had become their hallmark had to be stopped. I took a firm stand that this could not go on. We tried to negotiate with them but they refused. I had no other option but to take decisive action (Times of India : 30 May 2010).

Government’s rebuilding efforts commendable: US Secretary of State hails Reconciliation Commission - Lanka, US ties improve - Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN in New York Dr. Palitha Kohona told the Sunday Observer that the most important outcome of the External Affairs Minister’s visit to the US was that it helped patch up strained bilateral relations between the two counties and created a better understanding of the ground realities in facing the post conflict challenges of Sri Lanka. It was the first bilateral contact with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by a Sri Lankan Foreign Minister. Dr. Kohona said Sri Lanka will emerge as an important strategic player in the global power balance. It sits next to one of the busiest trade routes in the world. He said Prof. Peiris’ meeting with potential investors will have a cumulative impact and the outcome will be seen in the tourism and trade sectors as well. Pledging strong support to Sri Lanka’s post conflict rebuilding efforts, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the Reconciliation Commission appointed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa ‘holds promise’ for advancing accountability issues in the country. The US Secretary of State commended the Sri Lankan Government for the ‘tremendous progress’ made in resettling Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and its efforts to re-establish democracy in the North when she met External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris in Washington DC on Friday (Sunday Observer : 30 May 2010).

From High Security Zone to Vesak Zone: Jaffna celebrates Vesak in peace - The ‘Dhamma Zone’ replaced the High Security Zone; depicting Karuna, Meththa, Muditha and Upekha (kindness, loving-kindness, delight and equanimity) with the appearance of the Vesak Full Moon on May 27. It was the first mega spiritual event which made more than 200,000 people in Jaffna as well as people from various parts of southern Sri Lanka mingle freely, exchanging Vesak greetings with each other and going around viewing the Vesak decorations put up in areas covering the Jaffna Public Library, Duraiyappah Stadium, and the Jaffna Fortress. Major Lal Nanayakkara, the Senior Coordinator of Sri Lanka Army’s Civil Administration Affairs office in Jaffna, told the Sunday Observer that on the directive of Jaffna Security Forces Commander, Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe, various units in the Jaffna peninsula had planned the Vesak decorations in Jaffna to highlight the true meaning of the Dhammapada in the peninsula which was devastated by death and destruction for nearly three decades (Sunday Observer : 30 May 2010).

Precautionary Measure Says Keheliya - The Government of Sri Lanka maintains that there is no threat of the LTTE raising its head again and that the Indian government’s decision to extend the ban on the terrorist organisation for a further two years is a precautionary measure. Cabinet and Defence Spokesperson, Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told The Sunday Leader that the Indian government’s decision is a precautionary measure following reports of various actions and protests by certain sections in the country. “There was even a protest against the IIFA being held in Sri Lanka. The authorities may have taken this precautionary measure due to such actions,” he said. Rambukwella reiterated that the LTTE was no longer a threat. “India needs to be cautious of all elements in their states as it is a large country. But there is no threat from the LTTE. The situation has been completely contained in Sri Lanka,” he said. The LTTE was originally proscribed in India in 1992 following the assassination of former Indian Premier Rajiv Gandhi (Sunday Leader : 30 May 2010).

Sri Lanka News Online wishes a peaceful "Vesak" season

Sakyamuni Sambuddha Vihara in Melbourne, Australia http://www.vihara.org.au

United States lifts travel advisory on Sri Lanka

Tamil Homeland in Canada or in Australia - by Sunil Vijayapala Australia - Dear Editor, Since Sri Lankans and Indians vehemently oppose a Tamil Homeland on their soil a plausible solution remains and that is either Canada or Australia the biggest sympathizers of Tamils to create a Tamil State in one of their own countries. On the lines of Balfour Declaration in1917, an Englishman should declare a Home for Tamils and out of the two best candidates Tamils will prefer Australia as it is much closer to Sri Lanka and India and with a warmer climate than Canada. Having selected the country it’s now a case of selecting the State in Australia to establish this dreamland. The best bet is Western Australia where Tamils will be more closer to the Indian theme bordering the Indian ocean and their Indian gods. They have gods for everything, for love and sex, for education, for music you name it they have it. And the latest addition to their list of gods is God Prabah, the God of Terrorism. Those who wish to commit a terrorist act now can invoke the blessings of God Prabah as the success will be guaranteed (LankaWeb : 29 May 2010).

‘War leaves 42,000 women widowed in East, 12,000 of them have 3 children each’ - Minister Karaliyadde on Wednesday pledged to strengthen the financial position of women affected by war. He said he would introduce self-employment schemes for them so that they would be able to support themselves and their families. Handing over cattle to eleven women in the Anuradhapura Rajanganaya Divisional Secretariat area, on Wednesday (26), Minister Karaliyadde said that women having lived in the war torn North and East had suffered financially as well. The Ministry would take steps to re-strengthen their earning capacity by introducing self employment schemes, he said.  Steps had been taken to commence animal husbandry in Anuradhapura, Trincomalee and Baticaloa areas. Farming families were being given loans to purchase cattle, goats and chicken, the minister said. The Minister said there were 42,000 women widowed by the war in the East while twelve thousand of them had three children each. However, a total count of the number in all areas was yet to be taken, he said (Island : 29 May 2010).

UNICEF helping renovate hospitals in former LTTE areas - A year after the defeat of the LTTE, the United Nations Children’s Fund is actively assisting in reviving the hospitals and health facilities in the war ravaged areas of North once dominated by the LTTE.  The UNICEF is refurbishing and renovating four Gramodaya Health Centres in the Northern Province and is also modernising and equipping the obstetric and paediatric units of the Mullaithivu General Hospital.  The UNICEF on Thursday re-established emergency obstetric and paediatric care at the Kilinochchi General Hospital damaged during the conflict.  In a special event, Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa, along with UNICEF Representative Philippe Duamelle, re-opened the new facility.  The hospital is now equipped to handle complicated obstetric procedures and allow pregnant mothers to deliver their babies safely, says a UNICEF release.  Besides providing assistance for the operation theatre, labour room, maternity and paediatric wards that were refurbished and equipped, UNICEF will also help provide a special baby care unit in the Kilinochchi hospital (Island ; 29 May 2010).

Vesak celebrated in Jaffna - Jaffna celebrated Vesak after a lapse of three decades this year. The northernmost town witnessed a crowd of about 200,000 taking part in Vesak related activities, the army said. Thronging crowds enjoyed ‘Vesak’ decorations and illuminations, and food at ’ organized by the Security Forces Headquarters in the North, in the special Vesak zone, covering the areas of Jaffna Fort, the Library and the Duraiappa Stadium. The theme of the celebrations which will continue till May 31 is ‘Yapa Patunai, Daham Amavai’. The highlight of the event was the singing of ‘Buddhist devotional songs" in Tamil by the students of the Jaffna Girls’ Schools (Island : 29 May 2010).

East gets software developer with US support - For the first time, a multinational IT company will open a major production center in the Eastern Province. With financial and technical support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), a new software product development center, Advanced Information Consulting (Pvt) Ltd., has been established in Akkaraipattu, in the Ampara District. The center will create employment opportunities for youth graduating from local educational facilities in the Eastern Province. This pioneering initiative, led by Kingslake Engineering Systems (Pvt) Ltd. through its subsidiary Advanced Information Consulting (Pvt.) Ltd. (AIC), will help build the professional capacity of youth living in a post-conflict environment (Island : 29 May 2010).

Power to N&E being restored - Power and Energy Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka yesterday said that the government was keen on re-constructing the damaged power lines in the formerly war torn North and East as soon as possible. On Thursday CEB crews commenced work on the Vavuniya–Jaffna power line. Ministry officials estimated the cost of the entire project at Rs. 2 billion. The Minister said that the government’s energy policy would be determined in the future by three Es –Energy, Economy and Environment. The restoration of Vavuniya – Jaffna power line, which was damaged by the LTTE, is jointly funded by the Asian Development Bank and the Japanese government (Island : 29 May 2010).

Child malnutrition high in N-E - Child malnutrition is considerably high in the North and East Provinces and has reached 46 percent out of a national average of 29 percent, a Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) revealed. In two provinces the prevalence of malnutrition is significantly greater among boys, (50 percent ), than among girls (42 percent). This gender differential is in sharp contrast to the malnutrition pattern in the rest of the country, where malnutrition rates are very similar among boys and girls. The age pattern of malnutrition shows that children who are underweight reaches a peak in the age group 12-35 months, and then tapers of slightly to 36-59 months. This age limit is similar to the rest of the country, according to the survey. The differences in malnutrition in urban and rural areas are small, varying by one percentage point. The survey found that the lack of maternal education is strongly associated with the lower levels of malnutrition. The prevalence of child malnutrition among uneducated mothers is 63 percent. As the education level of mothers rises, the prevalence of child malnutrition declines to 54 percent for primary educated mothers, 42 percent among secondary educated mothers and 36 percent among tertiary educated mothers. This pattern is consistent with evidence from the rest of the country which also shows a favourable association between maternal education and child malnutrition. At the district level, within the Northern and Eastern provinces, Batticaloa 53 percent and Vavuniya 51 percent shows the worst levels of child malnutrition. The child malnutrition in Trincomalee is 45 percent, Ampara 44 percent and Jaffna 43 percent is the best among the Northern and Eastern provinces (Daily News : 29 May 2010).

LTTE rump won’t pose threat, US travel advisory lifted - Acknowledging that the LTTE rump is no longer capable of disrupting civil life, the US has quashed its travel warning targeting Sri Lanka over a year after the collapse of the LTTE.  A senior government official, while welcoming the US move pointed out that the Obama administration had issued the travel advisory at issue on November 19, 2009 six months after the killing of LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran on the banks of the Nanthikadal lagoon on May 19, 2009.  Responding to a query by The Island, the official said that a section of the international community believed that the LTTE rump had the capacity to continue a terrorist campaign, though government forces decimated its conventional fighting capability.  The US went to the extent of advising its citizens and the Colombo-based diplomatic staff not to visit the Northern Province and parts of the Eastern Province due to the threat posed by the LTTE rump. Military officials said that there had not been any clashes between security forces and the LTTE except a few chance encounters. They said the developed countries could now rescind their travel warnings, thereby allowing Sri Lanka to enjoy the full benefits of the conclusion of the war (Island : 28 May 2010).

Germany-based LTTE fund raiser arrested - Police on Wednesday arrested a key supporter of the now defunct LTTE, on her arrival in Colombo. Well informed sources said that she had been instrumental in collecting funds in Frankfurt for the terrorist organisation and played a key role in the anti-Sri Lanka demonstrations held in the German Commercial Capital during the final stages of the ‘humanitarian operation’ launched by the security forces. "She was a key member of the pro –LTTE group who sat across railway lines and blocked the movement of trains in Frankfurt demanding the Sri Lanka government to halt the operation against the LTTE," sources said. The woman, who had lived in Germany for a considerable period, was also one of the main organisers of the anti-Sri Lanka demonstration held opposite the Indian Consul General’s office in Frankfurt, sources said. The suspect is a native of Chilaw and is around 50 years of age. Some of her close relatives too had been involved in the demonstrations against Sri Lanka and had raised funds for the LTTE in Frankfurt, the sources said. Her family owns the GS Traders in Frankfurt and her son-in-law who is also an LTTE supporter is looking after the business, the source said (Island : 28 May 2010).

Ravana’s land and Tamil Nadu politicians: a brief history - By C. Wijeyawickrema, USA - Mr. Sathseesan Kumaaran’s (SK) short essay in the Island (Feb 13, 2008) on the topic of “Indian (Tamil Nadu) politicians,” covered two items: (1) highly opportunistic behavior of Tamil Nadu politicians and (2) “high hopes among the Tamil Nadu people” (of an Eelam?). Because Tamil Nadu politics is a life and death issue for the Sri Lankans this topic deserves further objective analysis. A separate country for the Tamils is a lively and a permanent feature in TN politics. It thus runs deeper than the surface behavior of its current political actors/actresses mentioned by SK. One could say 90% of Tamil Nadu politics is a cinema by ex-film stars who played the movie role of the Tamil version of Ravana, the hero, before getting into politics. It is as if separatism is in their (politicians’) DNA (Sri Lanka Hot News : 28 May 2010).

New MPs visit Kilinochchi - An immediate programme has been planned to improve the livelihood of families resettled in Kilinochchi.  A group of newly-elected Parliamentarians, headed by Namal Rajapaksa, is mediating in this effort at the behest of the President, according to news.lk.  The resettlement of civilians in Kilinochchi, liberated from terrorists, is successfully being carried out.  The group of new Parliamentarians recently toured the area to look into the infrastructure and other requirements needed by the resettled families.  Minister Wimal Weerawansa and Deputy Minister Premalal Jayasekera also joined them.  Attention was focused on housing, health, education, highways, public amenities and youth affairs during a discussion held at the Kilinochchi District Secretariat.  Parliamentarians Dr. Rohana Pushpakumara and Dr. Sudarshani Fernandopulle pledged their full support to the resolution of all problems which had surfaced in the health sector.  Minister Wimal Weerawansa said a housing project will be launched for public employees (Island : 28 May 2010).

No international probe will be allowed: Rajapaksa - Sri Lanka will not allow outsiders to hold an enquiry into allegations of war crime during the final stages of the battle between government troops and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), President Mahinda Rajapaksa has said.  "I don’t want my internal matters to be inquired by any other country or any other NGOs. We will look after that," Rajapaksa told in an interview to Al-Jazeera television channel.  When asked if any civilians were killed during the final phase of the war, Rajapaksa said no non-combatant was killed, adding the civilians trusted the Sri Lankan Army and came to the government controlled areas.  "It's a war, you're right. By the way the people came to this side, to the government-controlled areas, you can see. If Sri Lankan army acted in a different way, against the civilians, they would never have trusted us. They wouldn't have walked into our camps. 300000 people. So that shows our army, they trusted our army," he said.  When questioned by the journalist if he would take action against those who have committed war crimes even if they connected to him the President said: "If it is a crime, whether it is my relation, or my army commander or anybody. It is immaterial. It's a crime, crime is a crime, so we have to punish them."  But he added: "we can't punish a person for defeating terrorism. So if the international community wants to punish Sri Lanka for defeating terrorism, I'm not for that."  "Be fair with us ... be fair with us ... don’t treat Sri Lanka like this because we defeated terrorism," Rajapakse said.  Last week, Rajapaksa appointed an eight-member “reconciliation commission” to study the last stages of the war and to recommend ways to avoid a return to ethnic conflict, but it had no mandate to probe war crimes (Hindustan Times : 28 May 2010).

Post war census in 2011 - The first post war census on Sri Lanka population will be held next year after three decades.  According to Census and Statistics Department sources the department procedure for carrying out the census had already prepared and the survey will cover all Grama Niladari Divisions of the country.  Some GN divisions will be divided to 150 census blocks depending on the population of the respective division to ease the total census process. The Department will cover the total population of the country through over 80,000 census blocks during the survey.  A survey will be conducted by a strong workforce of nearly 80,000 enumerators, district administrative officers, Divisional Secretaries and District Secretaries for data collecting, counting and survey administration.  The Department has also planned to offer a special training program for its own staff and other staff at selected training centres. The questionnaire for the next census rather differs from the previous census. Some precautionary measures were carefully considered in preparing the fresh questionnaire, he said.  The funds for next population census will be provided by the Government and proposed public awareness and training programs will be facilitated by other donor agencies.  The Census and Statistics Department appeal to the public to give their maximum support to conduct the survey at a satisfactory level (Daily News : 28 May 2010).

Kilinochchi hospital re-opened - The Kilinochchi hospital re-opened yesterday with an air-conditioned Intensive Care Unit and Operation Theatre under the Uthuru Vasanthaya (Northern Spring) program.  Northern Province Governor Major General G.A.Chandrasiri said Head of the Presidential Task Force and Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa opened the newly constructed building with an Operation Theatre, a Surgical Unit and two ICUs at the Kilinochchi hospital to provide efficient medical service to people in the area.  "The Kilinochchi hospital is one of the biggest hospitals in the country. The LTTE misused the hospital during the conflict. However, the Government opened the Kilinochchi hospital soon after liberating the area under the Uthuru Vasanthaya development project," Chandrasiri told the Daily News.  He noted that the Government has also provided 15 double cabs and 30 motorcycles for the hospital staff. Around 10 doctors, four consultants and 250 workers are working at the Kilinochchi hospital. Nearly 300 patients are receiving medical care and OPD services on daily basis.  Meanwhile, Mannar hospital with a surgical unit, operation theatre and two air-conditioned ICUs were handed over to the public by Minister Rajapaksa (Daily News : 28 May 2010).

Wanted LTTE suspects nabbed in STF operation - Sri Lanka’s elite police Special Task Force (STF) arrested two wanted LTTE operatives in the country’s eastern villagers of Kalmunai and Kalawanchikuddy in a clandestine operation that was carried out in the early hours of Thursday.  The two suspects who were arrested were wanted in connection of carrying out an LTTE propaganda campaign in the Eastern Sri Lankan districts of Ampara and Batticaloa in an attempt to revive the terror outfit which was completely crippled last May after the Sri Lanka military defeated them.  According to police sources that spoke to Asian Tribune the two suspects have now been handed over to the police Terrorist Investigations Division (TID) for interrogation.  The sleuths of the TID are said to be probing their links with LTTE operatives living overseas who are said to have been funding them after end of Sri Lanka’s three decade long war.  The STF had also recovered two mobile phones which were in possession of the suspects. The mobile phones were said to have contained video clips of the LTTE which the detectives believe were used as propaganda material to promote the outfit.  During investigations it had been reveled that the suspects were residents of Pandirippu and Eruwel areas and had escaped during fighting last year.  Early this month the STF had uncovered one of the largest LTTE communications equipment which was in Pudukkudiyirripu, Mullaithivu (Asian Tribune ; 28 May 2010).

More on SL foreign service - by  Anoma Silva (UK) - I wish to respond to a letter titled Foreign Diplomats by Rontejan Perera that appeared in your journal on May 27. I too have lived in the UK the same duration as Mr Perera, (ie 40 Years) and I beg to differ from the views he expresses. The UK has had diplomats over the years who were totally unprepared to defend the country when so much vile propaganda was being circulated in the media. There were diplomats who merely nodded their heads and missed valuable opportunities to correct wrong impressions at TV interviews. No one in my opinion did make an impact to effectively counteract LTTE propaganda until President Mahinda Rajapaksa recalled the diplomats to SL and had a workshop on how to deal with this problem. He encouraged the High Commissioners all over the world to be more proactive as regards the LTTE issue. Some HCs did involve the diaspora, but some opted out of this due to conflicts and disagreements within the group and the HC. Many expats like Ira de Silva have contributed more to dispelling some of the myths spread by the LTTE propaganda machine than some of our so-called HCs. Lots of expats took it upon themselves to do something when they could not watch in silence. These expats have contributed more to SL, using their own money and time for nearly three decades. I do take my hat off to all the expats who tirelessly worked behind the scenes with no expectation of reward, to uphold the good name of Sri Lanka. They braved heavy snow and rain in freezing conditions, and travelled from very far for protests and demonstrations solely to protect and uphold the right to a sovereign united Sri Lanka (Island ; 28 May 2010).

President in interview with Aljazeera : Freedom after 30 years of war - All displaced will be resettled by December - Don’t penalise us for defeating terrorism - People in the entire country enjoy freedom after end of the conflict that had strangled the country’s development and economy for over 30 years. The people in the North have started interacting with their brethren in the South. They trust each other, said President Mahinda Rajapaksa.  President Rajapaksa in an exclusive interview with the Aljazeera TV yesterday said the people in the North want to enjoy what the people in the South already have.  The people in the welfare camps want to go back to their original dwellings. They want better jobs and a sound education for their offspring, the President added.  The President said 90 percent of the people in the North have already been resettled and the rest would be resettled by December.  He added that the politicians and NGOs with vested interests are creating a different picture that the grievances of Tamil people are not addressed and they have been marginalized by the Government. The President added that this was not so. The President in reply to Aljazeera’s quiry over the allegation of Tamil diaspora that the Government has not done anything for the Tamil people, said the members of Tamil diaspora do not like to come back to their own country (Daily News ; 28 may 2010).

The surrendered LTTE cadres are all uneducated: Training them is another challenge - Almost ninety per cent of the surrendered cadres of the Liberation Tigers Tamil Eelam are uneducated. “They have not even completed their secondary education,” said Minister of Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms D E W Gunasekera speaking to Asian Tribune.  Minister Gunasekera said initially nearly 11,000 LTTE cadres surrendered after May 19 last year.  Out of them a total of 3000 were released and a balance of 8000 of them are with the rehabilitation centers. The Minister further said even this week they have released about 200 cadres.  The last batch of rehabilitated LTTE child soldiers, 108 boys and 90 girls, were handed over to their parents.  Already Government has released 294 child soldiers and also had released 96 children back to their parents earlier.  Minister Gunasekera said out of the remainining cadres 1000 of them are hard core cadres against whom there are allegations of murder and other criminal charges.  The government is making arrangements to rehabilitate the balance cadres by providing training in some form of a craft, Minister said.  For this purpose when assessed, it was found that 10 per cent of the cadres did not have any education at all and eighty percent of the cadres have not even passed 8 standards. He said that there about 4 percent who have passed their G.C.E. Ordinary Level and another 4 percent have passed Advance level examination and out of the balance a sizeable percentage are university drop-outs and a few have completed their university degree (Asian Tribune ; 28 May 2010).

Lalin’s Column: Myths of war (and peace) propagated by Dr Jayathileke - Dr Jayathileke (DJ) has in the Island of 19th May 10 attempted , one year after the end of the war, to call the roll of officers and politicians and ghosts, to show according to him how and why and with whom SL may have won the Eelam war much earlier. This is an exercise in extreme delusions, illusions and fantasies. DJ using selected names markets himself as a raconteur of ‘if and but’ dreams of military victories when the fact is that except for a few exceptions as in 1987 and 1995 and until 2006, real military operations did not go too well for SL. He especially quotes 2 officers, one dead, to add ballast to his theories. DJ has, unintentionally it is hoped, debased those 2 officers professional reputations by exposing their alleged exaggerated if not ridiculous and foolish claims that they could have been architects of victory well before 2009.  Was this an attempt to collaterally damage SL forces actual achievements? DJ attempts to use overwhelming force by Para dropping on the start line not his Cubans about whom he is merrily incubating myths, but a renowned warrior Gen Ashok Mehta IPKF and Col Hariharan from the same firm on the flank. This is a futile attempt to reinforce a doomed expedition. DJ attacking on every front, opines that had the ‘best’ professional officers such as one particular (name given) Sandhurst trained Army Commander been given ‘full command and full reign’, ifs and buts aside, SL could have ‘’won the war’ earlier. He doesn’t reveal, except for his ‘unprofessional’ opinion, on what basis this could have been other than having DJ’s sponsorship  (Asian Tribune ; 28 May 2010).

Germany-based LTTE fund raiser arrested

'Not looking for the guilty' - Kohona - The commission set up by the government is sufficient to investigate the allegations of humanitarian standards and human rights violations say the Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Dr. Palitha Kohona. Speaking to BBC Tamil Service he said that since Sri Lanka had established a commission of enquiry under the parliamentary act and it has full powers to investigate, there is no need for another international body to do the same (BBC ; 27 May 2010).

Inner City Press! Your Attitude Towards Sri Lanka - by Ira de Silva London, Canada Dear Mr. Lee: I have just read your posting on Inner City Press. Your attitude towards Sri Lanka appears to be biased, confrontational, and aggressive. Overall there appears to be a lack of objectivity. Why? Is it because you personally have an axe to grind with Sri Lanka? In the U.S. there are many such as Bruce Fein who is paid a monthly stipend by the supporters of the LTTE terrorists to criticise Sri Lanka. What are your credentials on Sri Lanka other than being a journalist and exhibiting a bias towards that country? You seem to have a problem with the representatives of Sri Lanka at the U.N. doing the job they are supposed to be doing, namely that of representing their country in a professional manner. You dislike Ambassador Palihakkara because he “defended the bloodbath on the beach”! Mr. Palihakkara is a professional and conducted himself at the U.N. in a professional manner stating the case for Sri Lanka. He has a long history of service as a member of the Foreign Ministry and a man of good judgement. Why should he not be appointed to any panel if he is qualified? Just because it is your contention that there was a bloodbath you will not accept that there was no bloodbath. For your information, there is no proof of your statement. For example, there were reports of people being killed, hospitals bombed in the north east on what you refer to the beach. However, the doctors who made these statements and gave casualty figures, later made public statements that they were forced to do so by the LTTE. One of those doctors was a candidate at the last general election. The hospitals that were supposed to have been bombed were unaffected, the buildings were intact, there was no blood on the surrounding area nor bodies blown to bits. If you had made any effort to check the validity of these claims before getting accusatory, you would have not made these rash judgements and statements (LankaWeb ; 27 May 2010).

Sri Lanka welcomes end to US travel warning - COLOMBO — Sri Lanka on Thursday welcomed the lifting of a US warning against travel to the Indian Ocean island, anticipating a boost to tourism and investment a year after a bloody civil war ended.  "This is something we have been looking forward to," tourism bureau chief Dileep Mudadeniya said. "It will have a knock-on effect on (travel) insurance rates and also encourage more business travel from the West."  The US announcement came soon after the first anniversary of the defeat of Tamil Tiger rebels in a brutal military offensive that finally ended the guerrillas' separatist campaign after 37 years of war.  The conflict claimed up to 100,000 lives, according to United Nations estimates.  The US State Department said in a statement that it had "cancelled the Travel Warning for Sri Lanka due to improvements in safety and security conditions throughout the country".  Tourists were not directly targeted even during the worst of fighting between troops and Tamil Tigers, but the violence seriously affected the island's image (AFP : 27 May 2010).

AI report on Sri Lanka - By Asoka Weerasinghe, Canada - The Editor (Letters) THE OTTAWA CITIZEN; Sir: “The activist group Amnesty International accuses key United Nations human rights bodies of inaction or of being ineffectual, a report set for release today shows”, you said. And you continued to say, “Amnesty International says 47-member body has suffered “paralysis” in dealing with alleged atrocities in Sri Lanka”. If there was “paralysis” my assumption is simply that a reality check as to what has gone on since April 2009 and after the Tamil Tigers were militarily wiped out on May 18, 2009, after haemorrhaging that island nation for 27 years which accounted to over 100,000 killings have placed them in a quandary. Because the 47-member body at the UN had to reconcile with the fact that since May 18, 2009, Sri Lanka has not shed a single tear because of human rights violations by the Tamil Tigers with human suicide bombings and claymore mine blasts planted by them killing innocent commuters almost daily in Sri Lanka (LankaWeb : 27 May 2010).

UNICEF helping renovate hospitals in former LTTE areas - A year after the defeat of the LTTE, the United Nations children's fund is actively assisting in reviving the hospitals and health facilities in the war ravaged areas of northern Sri Lanka once dominated by the Tiger rebels. The UNICEF is refurbishing and renovating four Gramodaya Health Centres in the Northern Province and is also modernising and equipping the obstetric and paediatric units of the Mullaithivu General Hospital. The UNICEF today re-establish emergency obstetric and paediatric care at the Kilinochchi General Hospital damaged during the conflict. In a special event, Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa, along with UNICEF Representative Philippe Duamelle, re-opened the new facility. The hospital is now equipped to handle complicated obstetric procedures and allow pregnant mothers to deliver their babies safely, says a UNICEF release (Zee News ; 27 May 2010).

STF under Defence Ministry - The Special Task Force (STF) of the police which is under the direct purview of the Inspector General of Police, has been taken over by the Defence Ministry, informed sources said.  The Cabinet has given the approval for the Cabinet paper in this regard put forward by President Mahinda Rajapaksa. According to the Cabinet paper, the STF now comes under the direct purview of the Defence Minister with effect from May 12 this year, sources said.  This decision has been taken to ease the relationship with the STF and the ministry, the paper said.  The STF unit of the Sri Lanka Police specializing in Counter-Terrorist and Counter-Insurgency operations, was formed in 1983 not as a military force but rather as a highly-specialized police unit by then President J.R.Jayawardane.  The STF heads Counter-Terrorist missions and – as the most highly trained police organisation in Sri Lanka. The STF is mainly trained to provide VIP security.  In 1996, the STF was taken over by the IGP. Subsequently in July 2006, the unit was taken over by the Defence Ministry. Again in 2007, the STF was taken over by the IGP until May 12, this year (Daily Mirror ; 27 May 2010).

Interview with Sri Lanka's FM - Almost exactly a year ago, Sri Lanka's government declared victory in its brutal 25-year long civil war against the separatist Tamil Tigers. That victory came at a clear price -- the Times of London reported extraordinary civilian casualties, estimating at one point that roughly 1,400 people were dying each week at an internment camp for Tamil refugees. In meetings in Washington this week, Sri Lanka’s Minister of External Affairs Gamini Lakshman Peiris -- a Rhodes Scholar with Bill Clinton -- has downplayed international concerns expressed about the government's conduct of the war and the aftermath. He meets tomorrow with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Periris sat down to talk with POLITICO’s Zeeshan Aleem about the challenges facing a nation recovering from extraordinary domestic turbulence (Politico ; 27 May 2010).

Amnesty International can't dictate terms to us, says Lankan minister - Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Gamini Peiris, who is visiting Washington for meetings with senior Obama Administration officials and US lawmakers, has slammed the International Crisis Group, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other such groups--that have accused Sri Lanka of war crimes during its conflict with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and called for an international tribunal to investigate these alleged rights violations--saying these groups don't constitute the "international community," and hence don't have the moral authority "to tell us what to do." Peiris said, "Everybody talks of the international community--what is the international community? There are 196 countries in the United Nations. Now these matters have been taken up in appropriate fora in the United Nations. The Human Rights Council debated this matter for three long days. There were representatives from all six continents and 29 people thought there was no need to take any action, 11 countries thought otherwise, with six abstentions. A couple of NGOs do not constitute the international community," he argued. Peiris asserted that "the Security Council, the General Assembly, the Human Rights Council (of the United Nations), yes. Now we are prepared to take these matters there?but other avenues, no." (My News : 27 May 2010).

U.S. lifts Sri Lanka travel warning - Department of State has cancelled the Travel Warning for Sri Lanka due to improvements in safety and security conditions throughout the country. The U.S. State Department announced Wednesday that it was lifting its travel advisory on Sri Lanka, citing the peaceful atmosphere that has taken hold a year after Sri Lanka's defeat of terrorism. "The Travel Warning issued for Sri Lanka on November 19, 2009 has been cancelled, effective May 26, 2010," the State Department said in an announcement. "Department of State has cancelled the Travel Warning for Sri Lanka due to improvements in safety and security conditions throughout the country." The State Department's decision occurred during a four-day Washington visit of Sri Lanka's Minister of External Affairs, Professor G.L. Peiris. Minister Peiris is scheduled to meet with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday. On Wednesday, the Minister met with Gen. James Jones, President Barack Obama's national security adviser, as well as with senior U.S. Department of Defense officials. The State Department's decision was hailed by Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the United States, Jaliya Wickramasuriya. "We welcome the State Department's decision recognition of Sri Lanka as a peaceful and prosperous nation that is of course safe for visitors," Ambassador Wickramasuriya said. "We have been working with the State Department for some time to lift this warning, and I am heartened that it has occurred during Minister Peiris' Washington visit." (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 27 May 2010).

Tiger promoters arrested - Two suspects, alleged to be LTTE cadres, were arrested by the Special Task Force (STF) and the police in Kalmunai and Kalawanchikudi for engaging in anti-state activities and promoting the now defunct LTTE.  Police Media Spokesman SP Preshantha Jayakody said that two mobile phones containing a video clip of the LTTE were in the possession of the suspects at the time of the arrest.  During investigations it had been reveled that the suspects were residents of Pandirippu and Eruwel in the north.  The suspects were taken into custody following vital information gathered from the area.  It has been reveled that the suspects had been engaged in anti state activities since the end of the war last year.  The STF and the Kalawanchikudi police are conducting further investigations. (Daily Mirror online : 27 May 2010).

The ICG report should be burnt at the Pettah bus stand - by Ajit Randeniya - The so-called International Crisis Group (ICG), is one of the fraudulent organisations that conducts their nefarious activities under the guise of self-appointed moral force of the world; they have access to almost unlimited volumes of finance provided by western governments and various other individuals and ‘foundations’ intent on intervening in affairs of other countries, mainly for the purpose of keeping Israel’s murderous activities out of the news . Their latest intended fraudulent intervention involves the ‘report’ no.191. This particular piece of rubbish was released to coincide with the planned victory celebrations and President Rajapakse’s visit to Iran to assume leadership of G15, one of the most significant emerging world groupings is typical of the dishonesty of the group. They really wanted to spoil the party and tarnish President Rajapakse’s rising international image (Lankaweb : 27 May 2010).

Resettle civilians: Rajapaksa - Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has directed the authorities concerned to ensure resettlement of the remaining war displaced civilians, currently lodged in the government run relief camps in the north, within the next three months. As per government statistics of the nearly three lakh Tamil civilians displaced during the war, two lakhs have been re-settled in their original places of habitation. The remaining though lodged in temporary camps have been provided with the facility to visit their relatives and friends. A few weeks after the end of the war in May last year, the Rajapaksa government had promised to re-settle the entire displaced civilians within 180 days. However, the process has been delayed largely due to logistical problems involved in de-mining of the areas earlier under the control of the LTTE. An announcement by the government here said Mr. Rajapaksa had ordered re-settlement of all Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) by end of August and closure of all welfare centres in the North. It further said a family unit would be given Rs. 50,000, food items for six months and 20 roofing sheets. Earlier, the financial assistance was limited to Rs. 25,000 per family unit (Hindu : 27 May 2010).

Reasons Given by India Banning the LTTE Sufficient to Ban the TNA in Lanka - by Dilrook Kannangara - On May 14, 2010 India extended the ban on LTTE for another two years. Among a number of reasons given for the ban are the following. These have been extracted from the Notification S.O. 1090 (E) of Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 1. [T]he LTTE’s objective for a separate homeland (Tamil Eelam) for all Tamils threatens the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India, and amounts to cession and secession of a part of the territory of India from the Union and thus falls within the ambit of an unlawful activity; 2. [T]he turbulence in Sri Lanka was exploited by the pro-LTTE forces to draw up support for the LTTE and its cause by taking out processions, demonstrations, etc., in spite of the ban, causing disquiet and threat to the security of the State of Tamil Nadu; 3. [T]hrough articles in the internet portals, the diaspora continue to spread anti-India feeling amongst the Sri Lankan Tamils by holding the top Indian political leaders and bureaucrats responsible for the defeat of the LTTE. Such propaganda through internet which remains continue, are likely to impact VVIP security adversely in India; (LankaWeb : 27 May 2010).

More weapons recovered - Security Forces recovered one hundred and forty two anti personnel mines and fourteen Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPG’s) during a search operation carried out in Puthikuduyirippu, Palayakulam and Vellaamulliwaikkal on Tuesday. Two hundred and thirteen rounds of 7.62x39 mm ammunition, twenty-one hand grenades, three electric detonators, 127 grams of C-4, 24 grams of sulfur, bombs, three claymore mines, one T-56 weapon, twenty-one 60 mm mortar bombs, one 81 mm mortar bomb, two LTTE made Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), one sniper magazine, one box of 12.7 rounds were also recovered from the same area on Tuesday. Two thermo baric guns, one C-90 weapon, nine double staking antenna parts, five wire codes, seven T-56 magazines, 500 grams of RDS explosives, three T-81 magazines, fourteen rounds of Multi Purpose Machine Gun (MPMG) during a search operation carried out in Kulankulam and Palampiddi. The weapons were hidden underground in a way that cannot be tracked. The recovery was made after gathering valuable information from the area (Daily Mirror : 27 May 2010).

Response To Open Letter To The Defence Secretary. - by Insight By Sunil Kumar - In response to “The open letter to Defence Secretary from ordinary citizen Ms.Anne Abayasekera” who indicates dismay that she read the news report on the front page of The Island of Thursday, May 6th, titled’ ‘TRAITORS SHOULD BE GIVEN CAPITAL PUNISHMENT’, with an inset that ‘Defence Secretary Rajapaksa says the LTTE rump is exploring every avenue to avenge Prabhakaran’s killing on the banks of the Nanthikadal lagoon last May’ it is a truism she cannot repudiate on any grounds and needs to be enlightened as to why. According to the report under reference the Defence Secretary Gotabhaya has been quoted as saying that anyone seeking to undermine Sri Lanka’s sovereignty should be regarded as a traitor and why not? In fact there should be an addendum to his statement that individuals who fall into this category are dime a dozen amongst the overseas Tamil Diaspora who have not given up hope of their secessionist dream, openly and blatantly campaign for the cause and even set up Elamist Governments in absentia in mock perspective with much support from certain sympathisers who lend ladders to the springing monkeys of the so called resurgent ghosts of Tamil Eelam overseas and these need to be taken to task! (Lankaweb ; 27 may 2010).

Ontario Government support for terrorists - by George Rupesinghe Former Chief Subeditor, Reader’s Digest Magazine, Australia and New Zealand - The Hon Brad Duguid MPP Legislative Assembly of Ontario, Canada. Dear Mr Duguid; It is distressing to learn that you, as a Canadian legislator, has seen it proper to support your Tamil constituents and celebrate the first anniversary of the defeat of the LTTE terrorists in Sri Lanka as an observance of “genocide.” One can only conclude that you have been and continue to be a supporter of this most vicious terrorist group and its diaspora supporters, who for the past 30 years wreaked havoc in Sri Lanka with its murderous suicide bombing and other campaigns, including conscripting child soldiers, that cost the lives of over 70,000 Sri Lankans. Where was your voice and concern when your Tamil constituents and their kith and kin in the USA, Britain and Australia financed their campaign of murder and mayhem over the past three decades? Are you aware that over 150 suicide bombers took the lives of innocent civilians, military and political leaders including Tamils, and President Premadasa of Sri Lanka and Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi of India? (LankaWeb : 27 May 2010).

The Northern Province Governor’s office has planned to launch a ferry from Pooneryn to Gurunagar jetty in the Jaffna peninsula

Who’s afraid of another Prabhakaran rising again? - by H. L. D. Mahindapala - At the height of the Vadukoddai War when Velupillai Prabhakaran was projected as the invincible Tamil by the NGO and anti-national pundits they collectively prophesied that the war cannot be won. After the war was won this same weird mob is now prophesying that the peace cannot be won. One of the pundits in this mob is Sanjan Hattotuwa, (“Hatto” for short) the editor of the Groundviews. In his latest editorial he says: A “government supremely adept at winning a war is outrageously inept at winning peace.” This inanity – mark you, the government has barely had sufficient time to deal with the devastating consequences of a 33-year-old war — entitles his website to be renamed as Airy-fairyviews rather than Groundviews. If “Hatto’s” feet were planted on the ground he would first measure the time it took the Allies, particularly those that butter his bread now, to win the peace after World War II which only lasted six years unlike the 33-year-old Vadukoddai War (LankaWeb : 26 May 2010).

Tamil Tiger child rebels go home - All former Tamil Tiger rebels underage when the war ended last year have been returned to their families and communities, Sri Lankan officials say.  A United Nations agency has confirmed the closure of both the facilities which housed children who had been involved with the separatists.  Since the war ended, the government has been holding around 10,000 former Tamil Tiger members or fighters.  They were captured or surrendered and screened off from ordinary civilians.  The circumstances are controversial because they have been kept at irregular facilities without charge.  A total of 566 of them were 17 years old or younger when detained.  The government says it has given them a complete course of educational or vocational training which will help them catch up with their fellow citizens.  The military official in charge of rehabilitation told the BBC he was "very happy" with their progress and that the schooling facility for them in Colombo had now closed, weeks after the vocational centre housing the other children also shut down (BBC : 26 May 2010).

Embassies instructed to engage with Tamil expatriates - Minister Peiris to Huffington Post - I have instructed my embassies to engage with Tamil communities abroad, to boost dialogue within these communities and, we hope, improve understanding, states Minister of External Affairs, Prof. G. L. Peiris in an Op - Ed published in USA's Huffington Post of Tuesday 25 May 2010. 'We may not be able to bring all the former voices of the LTTE among Tamil expatriates to the table, but I hope we can bring the Tamil population with us, as an integral part of a united Sri Lankan people'. He adds that the Commission established to look at the lessons learnt from the conflict, will provide recommendations on actions that can be taken to boost reconstruction, rehabilitation and support reconciliation within Sri Lanka. 'President Rajapaksa has expressed his determination that no-one will be left behind in the new Sri Lanka, and the Commission will help achieve this important objective', he states. A year on, our people are embracing the opportunities it brings. We are making steady progress. I believe the painful shared memories of the past era of terror will drive our country on to many more years of peace and prosperity. We welcome international support and assistance as we work towards this enduring goal, the Minister further states (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 26 May 2010).

Minister Peiris tells Tamil Expatriates: Help rebuild - External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris on an official visit in USA urged the Tamil expatriates worldwide to get involved in the rehabilitation process in Sri Lanka expedited with the end of LTTE terrorism.  Speaking from the UN Headquarters in New York, Minister Peiris told the BBC that the Government is stepping up efforts to resettle displaced Tamil people.  "Well as far as the diaspora are concerned our hope very much is that they would involve themselves constructively in the efforts that are now being made to rebuild the North and East of the country," the BBC reported quoting the Minister.  "There is a great deal of valuable work for them to do and the whole thrust of the Government's initiative is inclusive. We want to involve the people of the North and the East and the diaspora," he added. Prof Peiris further said an economic renaissance was improving people's lives all over Sri Lanka.  "And what we are seeing is a kind of economic renaissance, a revival of economic life in those parts of the country which have been affected by the war which has gone for the better part of two decades," he said. Minister Peiris is scheduled to meet Secretary of State Hilary Clinton Friday (Daily News ; 26 May 2010).

UN ‘Shame list’ includes LTTE - The world’s "most persistent violators" of children’s rights were named this week in a report from UN chief Ban Ki-moon, which included details of a training camp for young girls run by the al-Qaida-linked al Shabaab movement in Somalia and the now extinct rebel group in Lanka, ‘LTTE’. The report also implicated both the Taliban and the Afghan national police, the armed forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Al Qaeda in Iraq, Somalia’s Transitional Government and rebel groups in Colombia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Chad, Uganda and Sudan. While most of the entities were put on the "shame list" for recruiting child soldiers, some — such as al Shabaab and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) operating in the DRC, the Central African Republic (CAR), and southern Sudan— were accused of raping, killing and maiming children. "Combat is no place for children. We still live in a world with those who would use children as spies, soldiers and human shields," said Radhika Coomaraswamy, the top U.N. official on child protection. "The shifting nature of conflict has put many children on the front lines. Too often children become collateral damage during military operations," she added (Island : 26 May 2010).

Double dealer - A foreign dealer who supplied communications equipment to the Sri Lankan government had sold the same type of equipment to the LTTE. The Security Forces say that this was discovered when a stock of equipment was dug up at Iranapalei in Puthukuduyirippu. These communications sets could be used to listen in on messages exchanged by the security forces. It could also be used to jam those messages. These items were detected by the police special task force. Their value is estimated at over five million rupees (Daily Mirror : 26 May 2010).

Govt. launches ferry from Pooneryn to Jaffna - The Northern Province Governor’s office has planned to launch a ferry from Pooneryn to Gurunagar jetty in the Jaffna peninsula. Pooneryn is situated on the northwestern side of the Peninsula. Northern Province Governor Major General G.A. Chandrasiri said the service would commence on June 01. Four boats would be put into service in the initial stage, he said. The boat service will save two hours for the Jaffna-bound passengers. The boats from Pooneryn will take only half an hour to reach Gurunagar while road transportation takes two and half hours. The service is expected to be immensely valuable for the public servants and other persons who travel daily to and from Jaffna (Island : 26 May 2010).

‘Horrors of terrorism’  The other side : - by Dr. P. A. Samaraweera, Australia - Reference letter by Ira de Silva titled, ‘Better to remember the horrors of terrorism of past 30 years...’ in The Island of 25th May. She observes, "...The LTTE diaspora’s commitment to Eelam, their motivation and unrelenting drive against Sri Lanka are not matched even in a small degree by representatives of Sri Lanka overseas who promote their personal agendas or sit on their hands...’ Her comments about the representatives of the government of Sri Lanka are accurate because of my experience in the UK, New Zealand and Australia. Most of the government representatives were passive onlookers while they expected individuals and associations to counter LTTE propaganda. So in most countries the latter issued statements and met members of Parliament to brief them on current affairs etc. Since 1983, the LTTE propaganda machinery has worked overtime feeding false information to governments, religious organisations, social institutions and so on. Our representatives were too busy with work, not patriotic enough, preoccupied with social functions, travelling or worried about education of their children. They have put other things before the country. Once during a crisis the Sri Lankan Association told the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka about a bogus statement made to the papers by the LTTE backers and asked him if he could put the record straight by writing a letter as it could carry more weight. His reply was , ‘Do you expect me to be like a tutor and write letters to the papers?’ The second was a social function attended by the High Commissioner. Those who came were all professionals both Sinhala and Tamil. As usual discussions begin with social talk, current affairs and as the night wore out and the people got ‘high’ they began to discuss the Sri Lankan conflict. A Tamil specialist doctor who had made a lot of money and was well off said in the presence of the High Commissioner aloud that he donated more than half his private practice earnings to the LTTE. Of course, this was no surprise. His Excellency gulped his drink and someone poured another! Briefly, our Sri Lankan representatives are not keen to defend their country (Island : 26 May 2010).

‘Global Sri Lankan Forum’ launched in Canada - The Sri Lankans living in Canada have launched a new body in Ottawa to represent their interests in the country, under the banner of Global Sri Lankan Forum. This is to counter and in response to the Global Tamil Forum (G.T.F) which is a sister organization launched by Tiger Terrorist in London, United Kingdom. On the Celebration of Dawn of Peace, Lenin Benedict announced the launching of Global Sri Lankan Forum, which was welcomed with huge applause by the gathering. On his opening speech paying tribute to the men and women of the Sri Lankan armed forces who sacrificed their lives to bring peace to the Island nation, Lenin Benedict said it’s the duty of our generation to preserve the victory won by our brave soldiers. He said “as a Sri Lankan I have pride to say, that it was Sri Lanka the first country in the world to eradicate Terrorism completely from its soil than any other powerful nations in the world.” Lenin Benedict explained the necessity of such an organization. He said it was to counter the Tiger Terrorist separatist move to launch Global Tamil (Terrorist) Forum to give back life to separatist movement, which was defeated militarily and politically in Sri Lanka. He mentioned the GTF was also a product of LTTE Terrorists to divide the country and to keep the Tamil Diaspora under their control (Asian Tribune : 26 May 2010).

Wimal plans to build flats in N&E - Construction, Engineering Services, Housing and Common Amenities Minister Wimal Weerawansa has revealed plans to build flats in the Northern and Eastern Provinces. The Minister said he had plans to unveil a new national housing programme next year. "There is an increasing trend for new housing flats, targeting the low and middle income groups as well as shanty dwellers, with the dawn of peace. It will not only be centred in the Western Province as there are more possibilities of such projects coming up in the North and East." he said after inspecting the activities of the National Equipment & Machinery Organisation. The Minister also joined a special discussion with the Condominium Management Authority employees (Island : 26 May 2010).

The vestiges of LTTE terrorists are in a futile attempt to put the country in disrepute by issuing various reports which has neither factual nor legal basis

Better to remember the horrors of terrorism of past 30 years... - by Ira de Silva London, Canada - Since May 11, 2009 the new "Eelam War" on Sri Lanka has gained momentum. In Canada, the LTTE fronts staged a "remembrance" in the Canadian parliament building attended by about thirty parliamentarians from the four main parties and the most prominent were Bob Rae, once again calling for a war crimes inquiry, supported by Jack Layton, leader of the third largest political party, who is remembered by Sri Lankans in Canada for his famous/infamous speech; when addressing a Tamil Tiger rally, he compared Prabhakaran to Nelson Mandela. I refer to this merely to impress on Sri Lankans the extent of the brainwashing done by the LTTE and the fact that parliamentarians overseas who are wooing the Tamil vote make no attempt to separate fact from fiction. This is true all over the world where the LTTE diaspora continue to raise funds and get parliamentarians to make statements of support for the LTTE and are vociferous in their criticism of Sri Lanka and their goal of a war crimes trial at the ICC. The LTTE diaspora’s commitment to Eelam, their motivation and unrelenting drive against Sri Lanka is not matched in even a small degree by representatives of Sri Lanka overseas many of whom are content to promote their personal agendas or sit on their hands (Island : 25 May 2010).

A Loverly Bunch of Coconuts – Philip Alston on Centre Stage Again - At the height of campaigning for the Sri Lankan Presidential election, Prof Philip Alston issued a missive regarding the Channel 4 video which I read with great interest. He reported there that he had finallly engaged three experts to check on the authenticity of the video he saw on Channel 4. This was something he should have done a very long time ago, well before he rushed publicly into the matter. Indeed I noted in my initial response to him that, almost as soon as we got the letter, we were also ‘sent a press release which you had had dispatched to our Mission in Geneva at 15.37 on that same Friday afternoon, a release which seems to make your letter redundant.’ (Rajiva Wijesinghe : 25 May 2010).

Futile attempt to tarnish country’s image - The vestiges of LTTE terrorists are in a futile attempt to put the country in disrepute by issuing various reports which has neither factual nor legal basis after the failure of the US and western powers to meddle with its internal affairs, Senior Lawyer S.L. Gunasekera said.  Referring to the recent report issued by the International Crisis Group on Sri Lanka, Gunasekera said this NGO has been taking the international community for a ride by issuing various reports which are aimed at creating division in developing countries.  Gunasekera was speaking at an intellectual forum at the National Library and Documentation Board Auditorium yesterday.  He said none of these NGOs uttered a word nor issued a single report in condemnation when the LTTE was killing thousands of civilians in the South and North.  He queried where the crisis groups were when hundreds of passengers were killed by claymore mines triggered by the LTTE in Dehiwala, Central Bank , Pettah bus stand and so many places.  He said the ISG executive committee comprises Stephen J Solaz and a number of Pro LTTE elements whose main target is to carry forward what the French Foreign Minister and Former British Foreign Secretary David Miliband failed in the back drop of stiff resistance by the Government.  Gunasekera said the purpose of preparing this baseless report by which Security Forces have been charged of committing war crimes is to give some sort of recognition to the mythical Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (Daily News : 25 May 2010).

Human rights Watch (HRW) report on Sri Lanka -by Ben Silva - Open Letter, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon United Nations; Dear Sir, Human rights Watch (HRW) report on Sri Lanka - Introduction - I wish to expose HRW as a malicious group against Sri Lanka. HRW is just a noisy group singing for their money. New evidence is emerging that civilians are being killed in Iraq and Afghanistan on a daily basis. Over one million civilians have been killed in Iraq. Drones used by USA regularly hit civilian targets. HRW is just making a noise to earn some money, perhaps to continue the luxurious lifestyles of their officials. They may even be racist (LankaWeb : 25 may 2010).

Sri Lanka steps up pressure against foreign war panel - Sri Lanka's government has stepped up diplomatic pressure against UN attempts to investigate its conduct in the against Tamil Tiger rebels. But UN chief Ban Ki-moon says that he is still working on setting up a panel of experts to advise him on Sri Lanka's human rights accountability. Sri Lanka's foreign minister has said it would have no "moral justification". Meanwhile, in the north, relatives of people who disappeared during the war have staged a demonstration. The message from Sri Lanka to the international community is: "Don't interfere" (BBC ; 25 May 2010).

Sevavanitha hands over new houses to families of Naval War Heroes - Sevavanitha Unit of the Sri Lanka Navy handed over five new houses, which were constructed at Paradise Housing Scheme at Athawa-Wariyapola by Sevavanitha Unit of Sri Lanka Navy, to the families of Naval war heroes on 24th May 2010. On the invitation of Mrs.Malathie Samarasinghe the President Navy Sevavanitha Unit, Mrs Ioma Rajapaksa the Chairperson of MOD Sevavanitha Unit graced the occasion as the chief guest. Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy Vice Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe, Commander North Western Naval Area, other senior officers of Naval Headquarters and members of sevavanitha Unit attended the event. New houses were donated to families of PO HRMS Vipulathilaka, PO MGKJ Darmawardena ,PO DMRPK Dissanayake who killed in action and to AB AMS Abekoon who disabled in action. The family of ME RDSC Jayarathna who fallen untimely death causing sudden illness, was too donated a new house (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 25 May 2010).

LTTE pose threat to Indian VVIPs: India - The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) might be militarily decimated in Sri Lanka but big neighbour India is not taking any chance. It recently extended the ban against LTTE as an ``unlawful association’’ capable even now of jeopardising ``VVIP security’’ and compromising India’s ``territorial integrity.’’ The notification’s mention of LTTE’s goal of creating a ``Tamil homeland’’ is interesting. ``And, Whereas, the LTTE’s objective for a separate homeland (Tamil Eelam) for all Tamils threatens the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India, and amounts to cession and secession of a part of the territory of India from the Union,’’ the gazette notification said. So, it means that the LTTE’s larger goal – at least according to the Indian government which once trained and nurtured the LTTE – was to carve out a separate country for Tamils comprising members of the community from across the shallow waters of the Palk Strait. Intriguingly, it added that while the LTTE remnants look upon the Sri Lankan government as ``enemies’’ they look upon the Indian government as ``traitors’’ – or those who were once trusted but have betrayed that trust. It went on to mention the Tamil diaspora. ``…through articles in the internet portals, the diaspora continue to spread anti-India feeling amongst the Sri Lankan Tamils by holding the top Indian political leaders and bureaucrats responsible for the defeat of the LTTE. Such propaganda through internet… are likely to impact VVIP security adversely in India,’’ the notification said (Hindustan Times : 25 May 2010).

Ban calls for accountability - UN Secretary General Ban ki-moon has called for accountability in Sri Lanka with the end of the war and said he will go ahead with forming an expert panel to advice him on human rights issues in Sri Lanka. The UN Chief, who met External Affairs Minister G.L Peiris at the UN headquarters yesterday, told reporters that the group of experts will also advise him on the basic characters and the role of the commission appointed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa recently, the UN said. “I am still working on the establishment of a group of experts who will advise me based on international standards and experiences on implementation of the commitment the government made in the area of human rights accountability. As you know, the Sri Lankan Government has announced the establishment of their own commission. The group of experts will have to advise me on the basic characters and the role of this commission,” Ban ki-moon told reporters. The UN Chief also said that at his meeting with the Sri Lankan External Affairs Minister he sought to urged Sri Lanka to continue to improve the conditions of the internally displaced persons and expedite relocation and reintegration of these people. “On that, I think they have made some progress. Then again, promote national reconciliation, reaching out to a different group of parties and people for national reconciliation. Thirdly, the accountability process as I have been discussing with President Mahinda Rajapaksa, as soon as possible,” he added. Minister Peiris is meanwhile expected to have several rounds of meting with US officials during the course of this week including a meeting with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. (Daily Mirror online: 25 May 2010).

IIFA:Kamal under Tiger pressure - Chennai: After mega star Amitabh Bachchan and film direct Mani Ratnam, it is actor Kamal Haasan who is now the target of pro-Lankan Tamil groups on the IIFA Awards 2010 issue.  Kamal Haasan, who had earlier refused the invitation to participate in the upcoming IIFA extravaganza in Colombo, said on Sunday he would not return his Padma Shri award. Responding to a demand by fringe pro-Sri Lankan Tamil group ‘Mayseventeen Movement’, the actor said nothing would be achieved by returning the award. The members held banners outside his residence on Sunday asking him to return the Padma Shri.  The group also demanded his resignation as chairman of the Ficci (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry) Media and Entertainment Business Conclave.  "Top office-bearers of Ficci, including its president, have acceded to my request not to attend the International India Film Academy. They promised not to attend the business forum scheduled as part of the three-day IIFA event," Kamal said, after members of the movement submitted a request to him (Island : 25 May 2010).

President sends ministerial delegation to Kilinochchi - A ministerial delegation including newcomers to Parliament yesterday toured former LTTE capital Kilinochchi on a fact-finding mission to find out the ground situation with regard to the resettlement of the displaced in the district. A highly placed government official said that following instructions from President Mahinda Rajapaksa, the delegation of Ministers Wimal Weerawansa, Premalal Jayasekera, Jagath Pushpakumara, MPs Shantha Bandara, Arundika Fernando, Lohan Ratwatte, Dilum Amunugama, Uditha Bandara and Dr. Mrs. Sudarshani Fernandopulle toured the area. He said that the motive of the observation tour was to find out the infrastructure facilities related to the resettlement of the displaced families, health and hygiene facilities and also to look into the essential services for the resettling of people in this area. The delegation is expected to meet the President at the Temple Trees today, where the team will brief the situation. With a view to facilitating the resettlement of IDPs the army has carried out de-mining operations in a total area of 812,499,329 sqm. In addition, the Army engineers have carried out clearing of paddy fields, irrigation canals, renovating of tanks, improvements to major and minor roads, ground preparation for construction of power transmission, clearing of jungles for resettlement, construction of play grounds in the Mannar, Vavuniya, Mullaitivu, Kilinochchi, Polonnaruwa, Trincomalee and Battiicaloa districts. As a result of its efforts a total number of 185,276 IDPs have been resettled in the above areas and Ampara and Puttalam areas too (Daily Mirror : 25 May 2010).

LTTE abused fleeing girls

Louise Arbour: ‘War Crimes in Sri Lanka”- a calculated humbug - by Asoka Weerasinghe, Canada - Madam Louise Arbour President and CEO International Crisis Group (ICG) Brussels, Belgium; Dear Madam Louise Arbour: Well…well….well…what do you know! While reading a brilliant analysis in two Parts, of the ICG Report on “War Crimes in Sri Lanka” by the veteran Sri Lankan journalist H.L.D. Mahindapala, now domiciled in Australia titled ‘Latest ICG Report runs off rails – Part I” and “ICG applies human rights as a cynical tactic to ‘push Rajapaksa government – Part II”, I couldn’t help but conjure the image of you getting caught with your skirt down running to the loo. You should read them. He has taken out onion skin layer after layer of your report like from a rotting onion, smelling of a putrid Humbug. Now I see the relevance of Canada’s Vic Toews, the Manitoba Conservative MP and the President of the Treasury Board yelling during Question Period on June 6, 2008, from the floor of the House of Commons, “She’s a disgrace” when Liberal MP, Martha Hall Findlay, a lawyer herself, called the Stephen Harper’s government to acknowledge Louise Arbour’s work as United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. I watched the drama on TV. It was high drama, when you were portrayed as an irrelevant person in high office by your own country, Canada. Wow! That is a heavy duty revelation, Louise (Lankaweb : 24 May 2010).

GL to raise Tiger backed Transnational Government issue with UN and US government - Sri Lanka’s External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L Peiris who is currently visiting the United States is expected to raise the issue of the LTTE backed Provisional Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (PTGTE) when he meets officials from United Nations and the US government. Prof. Peiris who left Colombo on Saturday is scheduled to meet UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon on Monday at the UN headquarters in New York. He is expected to raise the issue of the PTGTE and is also expected to discuss the Secretary General’s decision to appoint a special panel on Sri Lanka and UN under Secretary General for Political Affairs Lynn Pascoe’s scheduled visit to the island. Prof. Peiris is also expected meet US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton on Wednesday in Washington DC along with senior officials from the US State Department where he will raise the PTGTE issue which is said to be backed by several LTTE proxy organizations. External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L Peiris’s visit to the US comes in the wake of pro-LTTE bodies holding its first PTGTE meeting in Philadelphia recently which was followed by several meeting in European countries on May 2. Last week Asian Tribune exclusively revealed how the External Affairs Ministry called for a report from their envoy in Havana after reports of an LTTE build up in Venezuela came to light. The said report on Sri Lankan envoy, Tamara Kuliyanayagam’s visit to Caracas, Venezuela is expected by the end of this week, External Affairs Ministry sources revealed to Asian Tribune (Asian Tribune : 24 May 2010).

KP's contribution to Lankan peace 'immense' - Kumaran Pathmanathan alias “KP”, the detained former chief arms procurer and smuggler for the LTTE, is currently making an immense contribution to peace by working for ethnic harmony, says the Singapore-based expert on terrorism, Prof. Rohan Gunaratna. “He is building bridges between the Tamils and other communities, both at home and overseas, and is striving for ethnic unity.He is contributing to peace immensely,” Gunaratna told Express over phone from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, where he heads the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research. Asked on what basis he was saying that KP was transformed, as Saul turned Paul, Gunaratna said that he had met the man. “KP has met many people, including Tamils from Sri Lanka’s North and East. He is working silently,” Gunaratna said. “He has been set up to build unity among the various Sri Lankan communities, Tamils and others.” KP was never tortured, Gunaratna claimed. “Why torture a man and put him in jail when he can serve a good cause?” he asked. According to the Sri Lankan Defence Secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the capture of KP in August 2009 was as important as the killing of the LTTE chief, Velupillai Prabhakaran in May that year (Express Buzz : 24 May 2010).

Devolution is no panacea for Sri Lanka’s ethnic ills - By Ajit Randeniya - Ever since the war ended, haranguing of the government by external intruders such as the US, EU and the so-called INGOs, as well as the Colombo ‘kultur’ set on implementing the All Party Representative Conference (APRC) recommendations has not stopped.  These groups seem to be promoting devolution of power to the north and the east of the country through the 13th amendment to the constitution and the subsequent APRC recommendations as the panacea for all past ethnic ills of Sri Lanka, and by inference, the only safeguard available against future Tamil grievances.  There has never been a sound ‘raison d’être’ for devolution; it is promoted as a means of enhancing democracy, and sometimes primarily as a means of maintaining the unity of the state. Upon detailed examination, it begins to look like another device of the backers of the secessionist forces (Sinhale Hot News ; 24 May 2010).

Lanka tells UN hands off - Sri Lanka has asked UN Chief Ban Ki-moon not to interfere in its internal affairs and not to go ahead with the probe into alleged war crimes by its army against the defeated LTTE, amidst an international clamor by rights groups for an independent inquiry. "...There is no justification legal or moral for this step (UN probe) to be taken at this time," Foreign Minister G L Peiris told PTI ahead of his maiden meeting with Ban today. "Don't complicate matters at this stage. It's not going to do any good. It has the potential of doing real harm in a situation where the government of Sri Lanka, against overwhelming odds, is trying to move the processes forward," he said (Daily Mirror : 24 May 2010).

LTTE tortured Tamils towards end of war: UN - A desperate Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had forcibly cut the hair of displaced Tamil girls to prevent them from fleeing as girls with short hair could be suspected of being Tiger cadres, a new UN report has said.  The report, which according to Daily Mirror online has been compiled by secretary general Ban-Ki moon's office, said that at least 199 children were killed and 146 were maimed between January 1, 2009 and May 19, 2009, adding that the actual number of casualties was likely to be higher.  "Interviews with internally displaced persons also indicated that during the months leading to the end of the conflict, there were reports of rape during fight and of sexual harassment, especially towards former female LTTE cadres, including girls," the UN report said without identifying who the perpetrators were.  The Daily Mirror report also said that some young girls were forced by their families to marry their relatives to avoid forced recruitment by Tamil Tigers during the final stages of the war.  The report comes at a time when the Sri Lankan government is fending off renewed allegations of war crimes committed during the final stages of the war in 2009 (Hindustan Times : 24 May 2010).

UN’s report on LTTE - LTTE cut hair of fleeing women to mislead army - The United Nations in its latest report on Children and Armed Conflict stated that the LTTE had forcibly cut the hair of some fleeing women and girls during the last phase of the war in order to mislead the Sri Lanka army thinking that they would likely be treated differently. “Some women and girls trying to flee the conflict areas had their hair forcibly cut by the LTTE as a deterrent to fleeing, knowing that women with short hair would be suspected by the Sri Lankan Army of being LTTE cadres and would likely be treated differently from other internally displaced persons,” the report by UN Secretary General Ban-ki moon, which was handed over to UN Security Council, stated. It also said that some young girls were forced by their families to marry their relatives to avoid forced recruitment by LTTE during the final stages of the war.  “Interviews with internally displaced persons also indicated that during the months leading to the end of the conflict, there were reports of rape during fight and of sexual harassment, especially towards former female LTTE cadres, including girls,” the report stated without giving names, the who perpetrators were.  The report also stated there has been no evidence of significant recruitment by the Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulighal (TMVP) in 2009. TMVP, formerly led by Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan (also known as Karuna), has been reconstituted and is now under the control of former LTTE cadre Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan (also known as Pillayan). (Daily Mirror : 24 May 2010).

S. Africa to help solve problems of northern war widows - South Africa is to help solve the problems faced by women widowed by the three decade old war between the Government troops and the LTTE, the tsunami in 2004 and various other reasons in the Northern Province.  A discussion in this regard was held on Saturday at the Jaffna District Secretariat with the participation of the South African High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Ms. B. M. Pheto who was on a three day visit to the Northern Province and the Government officials in the Province.  It transpired at this meeting that there are around twenty three thousand widows in the Province and actions have been taken to uplift the lives of those women widowed by the war and to help their children in their education.  It was revealed at the meeting that the details of these widows and their families that have been collected through Divisional Secretariats and the women’s empowerment units at the District Secretariat were sent to the government for further action and advice.  The government officials informed the High Commissioner that the Government was expected to take action to solve the widows’ problems once these details were perused.  Divisional Secretaries, representatives of the National Youth Services Council and sports officials of the Jaffna District also participated at the discussion.  The High Commissioner is also to meet the political party representatives, religious dignitaries and community leaders in the district (Daily Mirror : 24 May 2010).

Lanka re-integrating ex-combatants into society - Around 8,100 LTTE cadres, who surrendered, including 1,200 women cadres, are currently undergoing the process of re-integration into society, a top official said. Sudantha Ranasinghe, the Commissioner-General of Rehabilitation, said that the re-integration with society would be gradual.  "We have provided them with courses in English and Information Technology," he said.  "Some of them are preparing for GCE Ordinary Level and Advanced Level examinations," he added.  About 495 ex-LTTE cadres including 198 ex-child soldiers were released to their families in Jaffna last week after completion of a successful rehabilitation programme.  They were among the civilians who crossed over to the government territory from former rebel held areas in the north.  About 60,000 civilians remain to be resettled, officials said.  A 12-member TNA parliamentary delegation led by R. Sampanthan made a fact-finding tour to the Vanni region last week.  TNA MP Mavai Senathirajah said yesterday the MPs had taken note of the grievances of the resettled people in several areas of the Mullaitivu district. He regretted that the MPs could not visit the Manik welfare centre in Cheddikulam, Vavuniya.  A top civil official in Vanni rejected allegations that authorities had ‘something to hide" in the welfare centres.The official pointed out that candidates from all parties including the TNA visited the IDP camps during the campaign for the April 8 parliamentary elections (Island : 24 May 2010).

GL to raise Tiger backed Transnational Government issue with UN and US government - Sri Lanka’s External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L Peiris who is currently visiting the United States is expected to raise the issue of the LTTE backed Provisional Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (PTGTE) when he meets officials from United Nations and the US government.  Prof. Peiris who left Colombo on Saturday is scheduled to meet UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon on Monday at the UN headquarters in New York. He is expected to raise the issue of the PTGTE and is also expected to discuss the Secretary General’s decision to appoint a special panel on Sri Lanka and UN under Secretary General for Political Affairs Lynn Pascoe’s scheduled visit to the island.  Prof. Peiris is also expected meet US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton on Wednesday in Washington DC along with senior officials from the US State Department where he will raise the PTGTE issue which is said to be backed by several LTTE proxy organizations.  External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L Peiris’s visit to the US comes in the wake of pro-LTTE bodies holding its first PTGTE meeting in Philadelphia recently which was followed by several meeting in European countries on May 2.  Last week Asian Tribune exclusively revealed how the External Affairs Ministry called for a report from their envoy in Havana after reports of an LTTE build up in Venezuela came to light.  The said report on Sri Lankan envoy, Tamara Kuliyanayagam’s visit to Caracas, Venezuela is expected by the end of this week, External Affairs Ministry sources revealed to Asian Tribune (Asian Tribune : 24 May 2010).

Uva-Kudaoya Commando Training Centre receives its first Commander - The 40th batch of Commando troops Passing Out Parade (POP) with 20 officers and 655 soldiers took place last Saturday at Uva-Kudaoya Commando Training School. Army Commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya was the Chief Guest. Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya was the first to take part in the Uva-Kudaoya Commando Training School POP in his capacity as Army Chief, creating history in the Commando Training School.  Lieutenant General Jayasuriya on arrival at the venue was received by Major General Shavendra Silva the Acting Colonel of the Regiment of Commandos and conducted to inspect the Guard Turnout followed by a Guard of Honour accorded to him.  Later, the Army Commander awarded Maroon Berets to officers who passed out while Major General Shavendra Silva, Major General Chagi Gallage and some senior officers awarded Maroon Berets to soldiers. Parents and next of kin of passed out soldiers pined Commando badges on soldiers. The Army Commander awarded prizes for the Best Student of the Course - 2/Lieutenant T. M. B. Tennakoon, the Best Shooter - 2/Lieutenant K.V.C Witharanage and Best Student in Physical Training - 2/Lieutenant K Thiwanka at the award ceremony.  A special show was conducted at the end of the ceremony showing the strength, military skills and fighting capabilities of the Commandos.  Officers and soldiers including Commandant of Commando Training School Lieutenant Colonel Uditha Bandara, Training School’s Chief Instructor Major P. J. U. S. Pilapitiya and about 12,000 relatives and friends of passed out Commandos were present. At the conclusion of POP the Army Commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya was awarded a memento by Major General Shavendra Silva, in memory of this historic visit to Uva-Kudaoya Commando Training School (Daily News : 24 May 2010).

Abandoned children: Parents to get information from Vavuniya DS - People in the Wanni and Jaffna District have been requested by the government to help identify the children abandoned during the final days of the war between the Government troops and the LTTE last year.  Many parents lost track of their children in the melee during the last few weeks of the war and some children have been separated from their families after they were admitted to the hospitals in the war front.  Child Care and Probation Department had taken care of these children and have housed them in a children’s home in Vavuniya under the direction of various courts of law.  No details have been gathered about 26 children out of them who are below three years of age, since they are too young to give information, the officials said.  Officials have informed that those parents who have lost their children during the final days of the war could get the details of the children in the children’s home from the Vavuniya District Secretariat and the office situated in Horowpothana Road in Vavuniya (Daily Mirror : 24 May 2010).

Another housing project for war heroes launched - A massive housing project is to be started to construct over 700 houses to be used by service personnel who gave their might for the country in the war against the LTTE, the Government Web Portal said.  This would be in addition to the Ipolagama Ranaviru Housing Project also built for our brave soldiers and security forces. It was built with contributions received to the “Together for All’ Fund last March. The new housing project is being implemented on a concept of the President and with the guidance of the Defence Secretary. Volunteers from the Army, Navy and the Air-force are engaged in the construction work. The project, which was launched on May 17, is currently in progress. The aim of the programme is to assist the service personnel who own land but lack funds to build a house for themselves. The Defence Ministry Portal said its desire was to provide shelter for all the war heroes who contributed their might on behalf of their motherland (Daily Mirror : 24 May 2010).

Weapons recovered - Security Forces recovered one hundred and ninety eight anti personnel mines and three Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPG’s) during a search operation carried out in Palampiddi, Narikkulam and Periyathampane on Saturday.  Nineteen anti personnel mines, one Rocket Propeller Grenade (RPG), one 20 mm mortar bomb, three 40 mm grenades, two hand grenades, two 60 mm mortar bombs, one FMC weapon and one FMC magazine were also recovered from the same area on Saturday.  The weapons were hidden underground in a way that they could not be tracked. The recovery was made after gathering valuable information from 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 Service (SIS) these stocks of weapons had been hidden in the area.  A large number of arms and ammunition hidden underground by the LTTE in the Northern and Eastern Provinces were recovered by the armed forces and the Special Task Force (STF) since the conflict ended in May last year.  Security forces are continuing their search operations especially in the two provinces which were once strong foot holds of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and large quantities of buried weapons exist as a result of it (Daily Mirror : 24 May 2010).

Karuna says .... The Tamil diaspora cannot make a significant impact internationally as it faces internal dissension and is now divided into three segments.

ICG applies human rights as a cynical tactic to “push Rajapakse government” - Part II - BY H. L. D. Mahindapala The ICG report attacking Sri Lanka was released on May 17, right on the eve of the first anniversary of V-day. No doubt it was timed to counter the celebratory spirit. Predictably, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Channel 4 in UK, editorials in leading Western newspapers and local NGOs joined in the chorus of the demonizing Sri Lanka based on the ICG report. The pattern is clear. This is what Noam Chomsky called “manufacturing consensus.” When the West decides to teach lessons to independent nations which refuse to toe their line they begin by demonizing the maverick states. At the height of the Cold War the common cry to demonize anti-West dissidents was to brand them as “communists”. That was a term of political opprobrium which demonized dissidents in the eyes of the West. Now that the communist bogey is no longer there the common weapon used by the West is to accuse non-compliant states of violating human rights. Sri Lanka is a prime example. In fact, the ICG report acknowledges this tactic of using human rights to attack independent nations. It says bluntly: “In this context, a long-term plan for sustained and graduated pressure on accountability for alleged war crimes and grave violations of human rights law offers the international community the only serious leverage they have to push the Rajapaksa government towards meaningful political reforms.” (LankaWeb : 23 May 2010).

Con group ICG exposed - by Ben Silva Introduction - The ICG Asia Report N°191 – 17 May 2010, is nothing but an anti Sri Lankan propaganda document full of venom against Sri Lanka, produced by the collaboration of enemies of Sri Lanka in HRW and perhaps the anti Sri Lankan Tamils in UN, such as Navi Pillai and ‘Pottu’ Coomaraswamy. The report is a malicious, venomous anti Sri Lankan document carefully crafted to mislead the reader. The collaboration between Tamil ‘Pottu’Coomaraswami in UN, and Garath Evans of ICG is well known. It appears that there is a deadly network, more like a web, of enemies of Sri Lanka, collaborating to act against Sri Lanka. Ms` Louise Arbour, President Emeritus Gareth Evans and the co-chair Lord Chris Patten have been critical of Sri Lanka and sympathetic to the ruthless Tamil separatist terrorist group, on previous occasions. They have previously attempted to give a life line to the terrorists. It appears that they are unhappy that Sri Lanka did not fall into their trap to give a life line to the terrorists and hence their revenge attack on Sri Lanka.Their report clearly shows their bete noire towards Sri Lanka and the report should be treated as a hate document and fit for the bin. Due to the nature of the document and its source, the document should not be taken seriously. It appears that ICG is seeking the same gratification as the abusers at Al Gharaib, by being abusive towards the brown skinned Sri Lankans. The report however expose the new nature of imperialism and their fronts, in the guise of ICG, which in Sri Lanka’s case appear to be an instrument for creating a crisis. Sri Lanka managed to resolve a crisis, created by terrorists, receiving funds from Western Countries, on its own. Why on earth is ICG attempting to create a crisis now ? (Lankaweb : 23 May 2010).

Lanka says UN report late - The government says a UN report which, in a section on Sri Lanka, mentions abuses committed by the LTTE during the final stages of the war has come a little too late and proves that the world body is not pious as it had claimed to be.  Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella, commenting on the UN report to Daily Mirror online, said that it was a well known fact that the LTTE committed war crimes during the war and not the military as alleged by various human rights groups.  The report by UN Chief Ban ki-moon noted that the LTTE had forcibly cut the hair of girls trying to flee the conflict during the last stages of the war to mislead the military into thinking they were Tiger cadres.  Minister Rambukwella noted that even LTTE cadres who fled the fighting and surrendered to the military was given fair treatment and not abused in any way as claimed by human rights organizations.  The Minister noted that the UN should not bring up crimes committed by the LTTE now after remaining virtually silent when the rebel outfit actually existed and committed these very crimes against the civilians. (Daily Mirror online: 23 May 2010).

It has been a year since you stopped crying, Mother - By Ruckshan Wickramasooriya - Day of Glory. Day of Triumph. Day of Freedom. On the day we ascended the summit and regained our rightful place as the premier warriors on Earth, let us take a moment to celebrate our heroes. A year has passed since the dust settled on the battlefield, drawing to a close what was probably the most violent and heart-rendering chapter in our venerable nation’s long history. The challenges that have come before and since that glorious day have been a myriad; but we have and we did overcome, as we always do. What is it about this land that compels her children to happily risk their lives in her defence? Perhaps it is her miles and miles of pristine coastland, glistening in the sun? Perhaps it is her mountains, shrouded in mist as they reach upwards towards the abode of the Devas? Perhaps it is her lush jungles, alive with the call of the wild? Or perhaps it is her ability to make us smile, even during our darkest hours? Whatever the reasons, since time immemorial we have had no shortage of kings and giants willing to raise the golden sword in her defence. From Dhutta Gamini to Vijayabahu to Parakramabahu to Valagamba to Monarawila Keppetipola to Veera Puran Appu and countless other immortals, our pantheon of heroes is vast, and now we can add thousands more of our own brothers and sisters to it (LankaWeb : 23 May 2010).

Mass marriage of Tiger couples - Fifty six LTTE couples, who are not legally married, will be married off as per Sri Lankan law, at a mass ceremony to be held at Pampaimadu in Vavuniya district on June 13. “And I am playing cupid,” said a chirpy Brig. Sundantha Ranasinghe, Commissioner General of Rehabilitation, who has under his care about 9,000 ex-LTTE cadre.  “In a sense, these couples are already married, either through a mutual verbal commitment or at a temple. But these marriages are not recognised by law.They have no marriage certificates. The mass marriage, we are planning, will give the relationships the required legal status, and help the couples settle down in society without any hassles,” Ranasinghe told Express on Sunday.  “To make these marriages foolproof, and also to avoid any legal problems for me in the future, I am getting down the parents of the couples next week, and securing a written consent from them. At the moment ,we have the consent of the couples, but not their parents’,” he said.  Ranasinghe hopes that the parents would not put a spoke in the wheel, as some of the couples could be from different castes or classes.  “At any rate, preparations for the grand ceremony are underway. During the auspicuious period between 7 am and 8.02 am,on the day, Hindu and Christian priests will conduct the wedding, and the Registrars of Marriages would be in attendance to do the needful. After the nuptials, laddoos and cakes will be served,” Ranasinghe said (Express Buzz : 23 May 2010).

Brad Duguid MPP: Joins Tamils to observe anniversary of the end of Eelam War - By Asoka Weerasinghe, Canada - Dear Brad Duguid: I have just read a news item which headlined – ‘ The Government of Ontario joins Canadians of Tamil descent in observing the solemn one-year anniversary of the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka – Minister’. I was shocked and dismayed to read its content when it said, “Tamils in Sri Lanka and in the Diaspora commemorate the 1st anniversary of the genocide that took the lives of more than 40,000 Tamil civilians including tens of thousands of children. The occasion constantly remind them the immense sacrifice of those individuals. Tamils were assaulted with heavy weaponry including internationally banned cluster bombs and chemical weapons by the Sri Lankan forces, on narrow stretch where more than 300,000 of innocent civilian were herded into. It was a complete darkness in the pages of Humanity.” (LankaWeb : 23 May 2010).

Study on INGOs and NGOs - An internal study regarding how International Non-governmental organizations (INGO) and local Non-governmental organizations (NGO) operate in Sri Lanka is currently being conducted by the relevant authorities. INGOs and NGOs will be regulated in the future and how they operate is currently being studied, Director General of the Media Centre for National Security Lakshman Hulugalle told Daily Mirror online. Mr. Hulugalle added that how thousands of INGO and NGOs in Sri Lanka operate will be looked into to see if they are doing a genuine service to the community or benefiting only a particular section. The opinions of experts in this field are also being obtained and how other countries treat and regulate NGO’s will also be studied, he said. The reports of the parliamentary select committee regarding this topic will also be referred to, Mr. Hulugalle added. (Daily Mirror online: 23 May 2010).

Bob Rae the circus clown - By Sunil Vijayapala Oxley, Australia - When I lived in Toronto some years ago I admired Bob Rae for his articulate speech and his honesty and qualities of leadership, a rarity among politicians and my expectations was that one day he would lead Canada. Once I remember he was the chief guest of Sri Lankan Association New Year function and he honestly commented on some violin music played by a group and compared it to a noise of cockroaches creeping through a glass tube! However our famous writer Michael Ontaatje who spoke later, courteously disputed that comment (LankaWeb ; 23 May 2010).

The wing that saved the nation - Their eagle eyes watched every movement of the enemy. Be it the unmanned surveillance aircraft or the beech-craft with the team of battle hardened officers and airmen, they became sharp for their flying fighter aircraft and to Sri Lanka Army’s ground troops. They became the warriors of the Sri Lanka Air Force defeating the world’s most ruthless terrorist organisation. The decision taken by President Mahinda Rajapaksa to strengthen the Air Force gave them confidence perform the best of their skills in the air and on the ground. The Air Force was thrust into attack and was stretched to its limit to cope during the unrest in the Northern and the Eastern areas of the island. They transported the injured and looked into their requirements playing a pivotal role in the fight against terrorism (Sunday Observer : 23 May 2010).

Tamil diaspora cannot make significant impact abroad - Muralitharan - The Tamil diaspora cannot make a significant impact internationally as it faces internal dissension and is now divided into three segments, Deputy Minister of Resettlement Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan said. He said that the Tamil diaspora had broken into three groups - US based Visvanathan Rudrakumar, Norway based Nediyavan and the London based group. They had conflicting ideas about the proposed 'Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE)'. Minister Muralitharan told the Sunday Observer that their efforts to form a TGTE is another pipe dream like Vellupillai Prabhkaran's Eelam. "How can they set up a separate State without the support of the Tamils living in Sri Lanka? They detest the LTTE for having destroyed them. No pro-LTTE element will get the support of the Tamils to set up a separate state in Sri Lanka now", he said. Minister Muralitharan said that the Tamils in the North and the East were confident that the Mahinda Rajapaksa Government would address their grievances. "They were denied development for three decades as the previous regimes had neglected them due to the conflict. However, the present Government had provided them an opportunity to settle their grievances", he said. He said that the Tamil diaspora would not return to Sri Lanka and they create issues for their survival abroad. Minister Muralitharan said that the Tamil diaspora did not suffer at the hands of LTTE terror and they had funded the LTTE, to make the outfit militarily strong so that the Tamil diaspora could continue to live abroad (Sunday Observer : 23 May 2010).

Steps aimed at reaping peace dividend : AG briefs European Commissioner Attorney General Mohan Pieris who is now in Brussels for the Sri Lanka EU GSP+ dialogue briefed European Commissioner for International Cooperation Dr. Kristalina Georgiva, that with Sri Lanka now well on the way to sustainable recovery, the Government and the people were increasingly focusing on reaping the peace dividend, while endeavouring to restore justice to further strengthen national unity. The Government delegation met the European Commissioner on Friday. The Attorney General was joined in the discussion by Treasury Secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundera, External Affairs Secretary Romesh Jayasinghe and Lanka’s envoy to Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU Ravinatha Ariyasinghe. During the discussion the Attorney General said that in this regard several steps had been taken within less than one year since the termination of the conflict. Foremost among them is the reviewing of the regime of emergency regulations, through considerably amending and even repealing some of them, on the basis of the clear improvement in the security environment (Sunday Observer : 23 May 2010).

More relief items from North for flood victims - More lorry loads of dry rations, coconuts, water bottles and rice are being sent from the Northern Province as aid to the flood victims in the Gampaha district.  “Fourteen lorries carrying foodstuff were sent as relief items by the people of the North to the flood victims in the Gampaha district. Already lorry-loads from Jaffna, Mannar and Vavuniya have arrived in Gampaha and the aid from Kilinochchi will arrive soon,” Northern Province Governor Major General G. A. Chandrasiri told the ‘Sunday Observer’.  In recognition of the service extended to the people in the North by Economic Development Minister, Gampaha District Parliamentarian Basil Rajapaksa under the ‘Wadakkin Wasantham’ (Northern Spring) mega development program, the people in the North are assisting those affected by floods.  People in the Mullaitivu district have sent a large number of coconuts as they enjoyed a lavish harvest, during this season. People are providing more items at several collecting centres in the Northern province.  According to the Governor, the aid includes water bowsers and gully emptiers. The staff of the Northern Provincial Council in Trincomalee donated a day’s salary to the aid program (Sunday Observer : 23 May 2010).

‘LTTE chief wanted to live to fight another day’ : The LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran died fighting in an islet in the Nanthikadal lagoon on the morning of May 19, 2009. But to die fighting was his last option. He wanted to escape and live to fight another day.  Prabhakaran had a number of escape plans in his mind, says Prof.Rohan Gunaratna, Head, International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research at the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.  USE OF SHIP BASED CHOPPER - Gunaratna told Express that one of Prabhakaran’s daring plans was to get the vessel Christina to come near the No Fire Zone (NFZ) in Mullaitivu district, and get picked up from the shore by a chopper based on the vessel. Ravishankar Kanakarajah, alias Sangili, of Canada, had arranged the ship and kept it in readiness in Indonesia. But one Achchutharan, who was put in incharge of arranging for the chopper, failed to get one, Gunaratna said. Christina was secured by the Sri Lankan navy after the war.  The second option was to sneak out of the NFZ and head for the Yala game sanctuary in the deep south, and use the less patrolled southern coast to escape from the island.  The third option was to escape to hideouts in the Eastern Tamil-dominated district of Batticaloa, with the help of Ram, who, according to Gunaratna, had managed to survive in the East despite losing the war there in 2007.  But none of these three options could be exercised because the Sri Lankan forces had blocked all land and sea routes. By May 16, the entire Mullaitivu coastline was in the army’s hands and the naval blockade was impregnable (Sunday Island : 23 May 2010).

EDITORIAL: Patrick J. O'Donoghue // Eva Golinger and the Tiger Tamils - VHeadline News Editor Patrick J. O'Donoghue writes: I couldn't believe what I read in the Caracas CC blatt! - According to Eva Golinger, the Tamil Tigers of Sri Lanka have close links with the CIA and therefore, the Venezuelan government should ignore them and rather connect to the legitimate opposition in Sri Lanka.Eva Golinger is editor-in-chief of the government's mouthpiece, 'El Correo del Orinoco' (in English) and therefore her opinion on foreign affairs carries weight, especially since she has made US state documents available to the general public with salient and penetrating commentaries. I just hope that Chavez doesn't take her word for it on the Tamils and is properly briefed by Foreign Minister for Asia, Temir Porras before entering the minefield of Sri Lanka politics. On Thursday, VHeadline.com broke the story originating in the Tamil "The Daily Mirror," which did not mention the (Tamil) Canadian Hart group that visited Caracas to take up contact with the Foreign Ministry seeking recognition of a Tamil organization in exile.Golinger's charges are that Washington negotiated with the Tigers for a US military base in a future independent Tamil Republic (Vheadlines in Venuzuela : 23 May 2010).

How Beijing won Sri Lanka's civil war - A year after the 27-year Tamil insurgency was brought to a decisive end, Peter Popham looks at how China triumphed where the West failed - A year ago, one of the world's most brutal and pitiless terrorist groups, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), was hunted down and exterminated on a strip of beach in the far north-east of Sri Lanka. In a war that had dragged on for 27 years, more than 80,000 on both sides had died, hundreds of thousands had lost their homes and the future of one of the most idyllic tropical islands in the world hung in the balance. Suddenly it was all over. In defiance of all predictions, the war was brought to a swift and bloody end. The plight of tens of thousands of Tamil civilians caught in the middle was brushed aside: a Chinese veto prevented the UN Security Council from even debating the issue, let alone sending monitors to investigate. Foreign journalists were barred both from the conflict zone and the prison camps set up for Tamil survivors, as was David Miliband when the then foreign secretary flew in to try to find out what was going on. Local journalists critical of government action were terrorised into silence (The Independent ; 23 May 2010).

Sri Lankans hit Tamil Tiger tourist trail -  The wreckage left by a brutal war has created a new tourist trail in Sri Lanka just a year after the Tamil Tiger rebels were crushed by government forces. A giant water tower smashed to the ground is a star attraction for hundreds of people driving through the former war zone where the rebels once had their de facto capital. Situated along the highway that links the island’s northern Jaffna peninsula to the south, the white cement tower was a prominent landmark in Kilinochchi, but was blown up by the rebels during a battle with army troops.  Such fighting is now a thing of the past after government soldiers seized all territory controlled by the Tigers and wiped out their leadership one year ago this week.  The guerrillas had been fighting for an independent homeland for the island’s minority Tamil population concentrated in the island’s northeast — a decades-long conflict that the UN estimates cost 100,000 lives.  Surrounded by destroyed buildings and army camps, the water tower provides an irresistible backdrop for amateur photographers. It is also covered in graffiti written by the soldiers who marched in last year on their way to victory (Sunday Island ; 23 May 2010).

Sri Lanka's detained former army chief, General Sarath Fonseka,  denies war crimes.

LTTE abused fleeing girls - A report by UN Secretary General Ban-ki moon, handed over to the UN Security Council on Children and Armed Conflict, notes in a section on Sri Lanka that the LTTE had forcibly cut the hair of girls trying to flee the conflict during the last stages of the war to mislead the military into thinking they were Tiger cadres.  Meanwhile the annual report which had once listed the LTTE and the TMVP led by Karuna Amman and later Pillayan as outfits involved in child recruitment, now does not have their names listed with the end of the war but yet carries the name of Karuna supporter Iniya Barrathi as a child recruiter.  “Some women and girls trying to flee the conflict areas had their hair forcibly cut by the LTTE as a deterrent to fleeing, knowing that women with short hair would be suspected by the Sri Lankan Army of being LTTE cadres and would likely be treated differently from other internally displaced persons,” the report seen by Daily Mirror online said.  The report also said that some young girls were forced by their families to marry their relatives to avoid forced recruitment by LTTE during the final stages of the war.  The report comes amidst allegations by human rights groups of serious human rights abuses by the government during the final stages of the war which ended in May last year, allegations which the government has denied.  The Annual Report gives an overview of the situation of children affected by conflict and action taken for their protection over the reporting period. In mid-June the report will be discussed in the Security Council Open Debate on Children and Armed Conflict (Daily Mirror : 22 May 2010).

Hand behind ICG report on Sri Lanka – Stephen Solarz – aided Pol Pot from US Congress - If it is disclosed that one of the principal advocates in the International Crisis Group who wants Sri Lanka tried for alleged war crimes and genocide was once the architect of the U.S. policy toward Cambodia which facilitated the ousted ‘butcher’ Pol Pot with expertise, technical support and funds to bring the disgraced Khmer Rouge back to Cambodia as a partner of a U.S.-backed regime . Most, who are aware of this person’s stature these days in the realm of human rights, would dismiss the notion as vicious propaganda.  With some research and considerable knowledge of this ‘human rights crusader’ the Asian Tribune is now in a position to expose this pseudo-human rights advocate who is using the organization he founded in 1995 after his defeat in the U.S. Congressional election in November 1992 to be the champion of human rights (Asian Tribune : 22 May 2010).

Louise Arbour: Let’s investigate India, Norway and Canada for war crimes in Sri Lanka - By Asoka Weerasinghe, Canada - Madam Louise Arbour; President/CEO, International Crisis Group (ICG) Brussels, Belgium, Dear Madam Louise Arbour: Oooooo, lady, just read the TIME on WORLD article, ‘REPORT: The Sins of Sri Lanka’s Great War Victory’, of Wednesday May 19, 2010, by-lined Jyoti Thottam and Amantha Perera, which said, “The International Crisis Group, and international human rights group based in Brussels, released an alarming report on Tuesday, timed to coincide with the first anniversary of the end of Sri Lanka’s war. The report, “War Crimes in Sri Lanka,” calls for an international inquiry into violations by Sri Lankan security forces, describing several incidents in which civilian targets, including hospitals and humanitarian aid shelters, were shelled.” Ummmmm….nasty……nasty. The Government of Sri Lanka has come back saying that all this is damn poppycock (LankaWeb : 21 May 2010).

ICG: Mouthpiece of the vendors of terror - The anniversary of the defeat of the LTTE came earlier this week, and true to form the International Crisis Group (ICG) came out with its report on Sri Lanka and Channel 4 had another “exposure” of what is alleged to be war crimes and violations of International Humanitarian Law in the military operations to defeat the LTTE. It would have been surprising indeed if there were no such moves to mark the end of terrorism in Sri Lanka, and the restoration of peace after 30 long years. It is a trend in some quarters of the West, that help keep the LTTE flag flying after the rout it suffered in May last year, and keep finding new evidence to suit their ends.  The hurrahs were loud among the peaceniks of the days of battle with the LTTE, as they have to face the reality of peace today. Peace is what they shouted for and peace is what we have today, but the ICG, Channel 4 and The Hub on BBC anchored by Nick Gowing lead the way in trying to show the world that the peace was not won as rightly as they would have wished it to be.  Channel 4 has two new and conveniently unnamed sources for the allegation about the how “both Tamil fighters and civilians were executed after surrendering and that these orders to the troops came from “the top”.  And who does Channel 4 have to comment on these allegations? It is none other than Louise Arbour, former Chief Prosecutor at the International War Crimes Tribunal and currently President of the International Crisis Group, who has been known for long as a determined opponent of Sri Lanka’s fight against the LTTE and efforts to restore peace to a nation traumatized by a 30 - year menace of terror (Daily News : 22 May 2010).

Time to abandon devolutionist lunacy - By Malinda Seneviratne - I read recently that India is pressurizing the Government of Sri Lanka to ‘implement fully the 13th Amendment’. Around the same time, I read Dayan Jayatilleka echoing this position, not as ‘pressure’ but as fervent plea as appropriate to his love for India and of course the more guarded and less black-cheque affection for the Rajapaksa regime. A few preliminary observations are in order here. First, until such time that India is amenable to a ‘political solution’ to the Kashmir question, India lacks the moral authority to advocate this, that and the other to imagined problems, fake-grievances and fantastic aspirations. Secondly, I believe that someone who has eyes to see ‘Gaza and the atrocities committed by the State of Israel to the people of Palestine while being blind to what the Indian Government does to Kashmiri Muslims is half-blind. Such an individual is a mouth-piece for India and claims to being a political analyst or a political scientist is nothing more than, nothing less than bosh (Daily Mirror : 22 May 2010).

Three ex-LTTE cadres remanded - Mt. Lavinia Police on Wednesday produced three suspects including a self styled ‘Captain’ of the LTTE's elite Charles Anthony Brigade before Mt. Lavinia Chief Magistrate Harsha Setunge. They were remanded till June 16. The Magistrate allowed an application by Police to destroy the haul of weapons recovered by them in Nandikadal area after their arrest. One of the suspects identified as Sivagnam Einkaran was a ‘captain’ of the elite LTTE Black Tiger Unit. The other two suspects were Kadiravelu Janannthan and Nadesan Bodidasan. Police filing a B report said that the first suspect had joined the LTTE at the age of 13 and had undergone training under LTTE leaders including Tiger Supremo Prabakaran before been promoted to the rank of a ‘captain’. Last year he had being injured while fighting the army and subsequently had surrendered. He had been detained in a camp and after escaping from it, he was living in Mt. Lavinia in a hotel with a view to going abroad. Later, Police arrested the two other suspects while they were returning to the hotel after a visit to an air line office. Under interrogation the first suspect had directed the police to a house in Nandikadal in the north where ten claymore mines, three hand grenades, fifty wired cord reels, two detonators, a bag, some bandages and an overall were recovered. PC 8857 Wijeratne prosecuted (Island : 22 May 2010).

Chinese ambassador pledges more support for North-East rebuilding programme - The Chinese ambassador to Sri Lanka Yang Ziuping pledged more support from China for the resettling and rebuilding programmes of Sri Lanka government in the North, when she met Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratna at his office. The ambassador said Chinese investments are already flowing into the country at a pace. "Rice growing areas in the North and the East such as Mannar, Kilinochchi and Batticaloa are provided with Chinese machinery by its investors", she said. She said Chinese investors in Sri Lanka employed 91 per cent of their labour force from Sri Lanka. Only 9 per cent who are technically educated skilled staff was recruited from China. She refuted the argument that China’s export of capital was only a strategy to dump its workers in other parts of the world, thereby harming the opportunities available to the capital importing country.  The ambassador said China was planning to hold an educational exhibition in Sri Lanka to promote Chinese education structures. It would create awareness among the Sri Lankan youth of the institutions providing high education in China (Island : 22 May 2010).

Govt. blasts Human Rights Watch - Media Minister and government spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella said yesterday the war crimes report issued recently by the Human Rights Watch (HRW) was baseless and the HRW has been in the habit of doing so just before the country celebrated an important event or a scheduled meeting with an international organization. "The government challenged the Channel 4 television station last year to prove that the video footage it telecast was authentic. But the TV station failed to do so and the government does not think it's important to look at what these foreign groups say or report. They have been often denouncing the good work we do," he said. The minister accused retired General Sarath Fonseka of having attempted to downplay the war victory by disputing the date the country was liberated from the clutches of terrorism. On Thursday General Fonseka had told a news briefing in parliament that LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran was killed on May 19 and not on May 18 the date on which President Mahinda Rajapaksa had declared in parliament that Prabakaran was dead (Daily Mirror : 22 May 2010).

Australia strengthens Anti-People smuggling laws - The Australian Government welcomed the passage of legislation to significantly strengthen Australia’s people smuggling laws. The Anti-People Smuggling and Other Measures Bill 2010 supports the Government’s multi pronged approach to combating people smuggling by enabling the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) to specifically investigate people smuggling and other serious border security threats (Daily News ; 22 May 2010).

Sri Lankan diplomat dismisses war-crimes claim - Allegations in Arbour report ‘unsubstantiated;’ world should butt out, High Commissioner to Canada says. Sri Lanka’s top diplomat in Canada has dismissed claims her government committed war crimes as it crushed the Tamil Tigers’ separatist insurgency last year, and says the world has no business investigating such “unsubstantiated” allegations in a sovereign country. “We say that there were no war crimes,” Chitranganee Wagiswara, the Sri Lankan High Commissioner in Ottawa, told The Globe and Mail. “We have been handling this conflict, so let us handle this.” International attention turned this week to alleged atrocities by both sides during Sri Lanka’s push to end the Tigers’ 26-year militancy during the first five months of 2009. The claims were detailed in a report released Monday by the International Crisis Group, a respected conflict-prevention body led by Canadian jurist Louise Arbour, a former international war-crimes prosecutor. The Brussels-based group said its eight-month investigation found “credible evidence” that Sri Lankan forces deliberately shelled civilians, hospitals and humanitarian operations, and that the Tigers forcibly kept Tamils inside the conflict zone and shot many who tried to flee to government-held areas. Ms. Arbour urged Canada, among other countries, to press for a United Nations investigation and to probe and prosecute alleged war criminals domestically under the universal jurisdiction of its war crimes laws. Canada has a large Sri Lankan population and its estimated 200,000 Tamils are said to be the largest such group outside Asia (globe and Mail : 21 May 2010).

Latest ICG report runs off the rails - Part I - Trying to punish Lanka for resolving deadly conflict the Sri Lankan way: by H L D Mahindapala - If there is one report that the Government of Sri Lanka must dismiss without batting an eyelid and summarily put through the nearest shredder in the office of the External Affairs it is Asia Report No. 191 of May 17, 2010 produced by the International Crisis Group (ICG) headed by three Co-Chairs: Lord (Christopher) Patten, Chancellor of Oxford University, Thomas R Pickering, Former US Ambassador to the UN and President and CEO Louise Arbour. Asia report titled ‘War Crimes in Sri Lanka’ carries the ICG seal of approval with a huge claim to be working through field-based analysis and high-level advocacy (listen to this!) to prevent and resolve deadly conflict. With all the impressive VVIP titles on its list of advisors (including Kofi Annan) the first question that comes to mind is: why is the ICG focusing with almost a demonic fervour on Sri Lanka, which has resolved its deadly conflict without the help of the ICG specialists on conflict resolution, when their field-based analyses have failed to resolve so many deadly conflicts (Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Palestine, Sudan etc.) plaguing world peace and stability? (Daily News : 21 May 2010).

Channel 4 allegations: Govt will respond no further - Media Minister Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella yesterday said the Government has no intention to further respond to the re-airing of a video and fresh allegations leveled by Channel 4, as the video in question had been scientifically proven to be a fake at the first instance. Responding to questions from the Media, the Minister said the Government had specifically and categorically stated, based on scientific evidence presented by both local and foreign experts that the video in question was a fake. The Minister said that the resurfacing of the disputed video was done with malicious intent at a time when Sri Lanka was savoring the first anniversary since defeating terrorism and when talks were proceeding in Brussels by a local delegation to regain GSP plus. The Minister further added that although the Government had gathered sufficient material within 72 hours to prove the video was a fake, Channel 4 even after 10 months had failed to prove that it was authentic as claimed by them. The Minister responding to another question during the media briefing held to announce Cabinet decisions however said that the Government might contemplate legal action against such false allegations in the future (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 21 May 2010).

Northern IDPs ‘need foreign aid to stand on their own’ - Welthungerhilfe, a German-funded non-governmental organisation, has urged continued international aid for the displaced people in the North.  "Now that peace has come at last, the international community is leaving the people on their own. They need every kind of aid in order to be able to start their lives anew in their old villages," said Joachim Schwarz, Welthungerhilfe’s regional director in Sri Lanka.  "The people are returning empty-handed to areas where everything has been destroyed. They have no shelter and no hoes with which they can cultivate the fields, and there is no water in the wells," says Schwarz. More than 280,000 refugees lived in camps in areas around Vavuniya, Jaffna and Trincomalee following the end of the war. Although about two thirds of them have since left the camps, only 110,000 have been able to return to their old villages. Schwarz said the almost 100,000 refugees who had found shelter with relatives were receiving only a small amount of assistance. This means that the food situation in the host families is deteriorating, he says. Welthungerhilfe (German Agro Action) is urging the government in Colombo and the international community to undertake more efforts to provide quicker and more intensive assistance for the return and integration of the refugees (Island ; 21 May 201).

ICG: The art of the impossible - By C. A. Chandraprema, Political Correspondent - An international NGO known as the ‘International Crisis Group’ (ICG) put out a report on war crimes in Sri Lanka last Monday as Sri Lanka geared to commemorate the first anniversary of the ending of the three decade long civil war. I am somewhat exhausted after examining in detail the various allegations in the reports put out last year by the European Union and the US State department. However for the purpose of record one needs to make a few observations on the ICG report calling for a war crimes probe against Sri Lanka. The report says that the ICG provided the Sri Lankan government with an opportunity to respond to the allegations in this report but that there was no response. Indeed it would have been funny if there was. The ICG is a self appointed body with no status to ask governments to respond to allegations. It would have been different if the US government, the European Union or the UN asked for a response. The ICG report was ignored by Sri Lanka and the chances are that most western countries will ignore it as well. What is suggested by even an NGO has to be practical and within the realm of possibility (Island ; 21 May 2010).

East beckons business - The Eastern Province is making a rapid progress in the spheres of industry and business. Stating this Eastern province governor Mohan Wijewickrema said that the province provides many opportunities for business, especially in agriculture. "There were weaknesses visible in the delivery systems which are now being transformed," he said. "It is timely for business to step in and do business." Key areas include rice milling and dairy farming. "We don't have a proper rice mill in the eastern province," Wijewickrema said. "All the paddy goes out of the province for milling. This provides an opportunity for the business community." Wijewickrema was speaking at the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce to announce the launch of an agricultural trade exhibition, 'Ag-Biz East', aimed at linking the region's farmer with business. The July 16-17 event to be held in the eastern port town of Trincomalee is organized by the National Agribusiness Council and the United States Agency for International Development with provincial government support (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 21 May 2010).

Though the LTTE was militarily defeated in Sri Lanka, a lot of pro-separatist activities are taking place internationally

May 19 – Probing a Dirty War - by Ira de Silva, Canada - The Editor Financial Times Ltd. London, U.K. Dear Sir: Your argument is that the call from the ICG should be heeded because “the ICG has earned respect as an independent, rigorous organisation”. It is therefore important to check their background and who is paying them because their “independence” depends on their paymasters. The key officials are CEO and President Louise Arbour, President Emeritus Gareth Evans and the co-chair is Lord Chris Patten. For the information of your readers, these three have been very critical of Sri Lanka long before the issue of it’s latest report. Gareth Evans even went to Sri Lanka to promote the doctrine of R2P for Sri Lanka. Louise Arbour was promoting an international intervention long before 2009 and Chris Patten was another who was promoting R2P so that the international community could gain control of Sri Lanka not for the benefit of the people of Sri Lanka but as a payback for those countries and organizations who are the paymasters of Crisis Group (LankaWeb : 20 May 2010).

Intl agencies playing the same old record - Rajiva Wijesinha - An initial response to the Liberal International on the ICG Report on Sri Lanka’s alleged offences committed during the last stages of the war against terror. I have now seen the Executive Summary, and it strikes me as pretty much a rehash of what a couple of interventionist agencies were propagating earlier on, and to which comprehensive responses were given earlier. For instance, the idea that government was firing into the No Fire Zone it declared was in fact first put out by the UN which called up my Ministry, but later granted that most of the firing came from the LTTE. That same day the Bishop of Jaffna issued a statement asking the LTTE to stop firing from within the No-Fire Zone. These facts were ignored by the agencies which seem to have fed in to the ICG report (Daily News ; 20 May 2010).

Ex-LTTE combatants released to their families completing rehabilitation programs - Over four hundred ex-LTTE cadres including 198 ex-child soldiers were released to their families recently after completion of successful rehabilitation program launched under the directives of the Ministry of Rehabilitation. The ceremony was held at the Veerasingham Hall Jaffna on 18th May under the patronage of Northern Governor Maj General GA Chandrasiri and Minister of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development Douglas Devananda. Under the ex-LTTE child soldier rehabilitation program they were given an opportunity to continue their studies admitting them to a school in Rathmalana. According to the rehabilitation Ministry's statistics 11,000 out of nearly 300,000 people who crossed over to Government held areas in May 2009, had been identified as LTTE combatants and sent to the rehabilitation centres. Up to now over 2000 ex-LTTE cadres including 847 females, 253 children and 55 university students have been released after completing rehabilitation program. At present there were 148 University students including 51 females under rehabilitation (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 20 May 2010).

Former Sri Lanka army head denies war crimes - Former Sri Lankan armed forces chief Sarath Fonseka has rejected claims that the army committed war crimes in the final phase of the country's civil war. The general said that there was no intentional killing of civilians (BBC : 20 May 2010).

Mixed Signals During New Eelam “War” on Sri Lanka from Abroad? - by Ira de Silva London, Canada - Dear Editors: Since May 11,2009 the new “Eelam War” on Sri Lanka has gained momentum. In Canada the LTTE fronts staged a “remembrance” in the Canadian parliament building attended by about thirty parliamentarians from the four main parties and the most prominent were Bob Rae, once again calling for a war crimes inquiry, supported by Jack Layton, leader of the third largest political party, who is remembered by Sri Lankans in Canada for his famous/infamous speech; when addressing a Tamil Tiger rally, he compared Prabhakaran to Nelson Mandela. I refer to this merely to impress on Sri Lankans the extent of the brainwashing done by the LTTE and the fact that parliamentarians overseas who are wooing the Tamil vote make no attempt to separate fact from fiction. This is true all over the world where the LTTE diaspora continue to raise funds and get parliamentarians to make statements of support for the LTTE and are vociferous in their criticism of Sri Lanka and their goal of a war crimes trial at the ICC. The LTTE diaspora’s commitment to Eelam, their motivation and unrelenting drive against Sri Lanka is not matched in even a small degree by representatives of Sri Lanka overseas many of whom are content to promote their personal agendas or sit on their hands (LankaWeb : 20 May 2010).

Victory Day Celebrations In New Zealand - The United Sri Lanka Association (USLA) of Wellington New Zealand that was constituted in 1983 to do what ever was in it's power to safeguard Sri Lanka's unitary status, commemorated the first anniversary of the elimination of the greatest threat to Sri Lanka's unitary status in recent times, viz. Tiger Terrorism. President Channa Ranasinghe commenced the commemoration following the singing of the national anthem, by dedicating the event to USLA's founding fathers , especially to those who did so much for this cause in New Zealand but were not still around to see this momentous day one year ago or see today, in particular, the late Dr Ubaya Dias and the late Dr. Upali Manukulasuriya. President Ranasinghe , calling it Sri Lanka's real independence day, spoke of USLA's contributions to the Rehabilitation of the Ranaviru, the disabled soldiers, towards which USLA had already donated over NZ $ 17,000 and was maintaining a dedicated account for ongoing donations. The money sent so far to the Seva Vanitha Army Branch for this purpose, has been used mainly for purchase of artificial limbs. Dr. Chula Rajapakse, USLA spokesperson , speaking next recalled the significance of the day being commemorated. Firstly , it was the day Sri Lanka was liberated from the gravest threat to it's integrity in recent times, Tiger Terrorism. This was achieved against the all odd's , leaving this most brutal terrorist group, considered invincible for over three decades, vanquished beyond any doubt, in an operation that lasted for less than two years (Sri Lanka Defence Ministry : 20 May 2010).

War Crimes Allegations: Current Trends in International Affairs Relating to Sri Lanka-In Defence of the Government of Sri Lanka - By Dr.Levins T C Rajaratnam - The current trends in international affairs relating to Sri Lanka with the war against terrorism and how the world look at us owing to the accusations made against us by vested interests and whether we have overcome the difficulties and convinced the world that we were justified in doing what we had to do is yet to be seen. The recurring problem of accusations is a result that the wrong people are holding diplomatic posts overseas without exercising their duties in convincing the international community about the truth that Terrorism had to be destroyed at any cost (lankaWeb : 20 May 2010).

Fonseka denies alleged war crimes - Gen.Sarath Fonseka, the detained former Army Commander and Member of Parliament, said here on Thursday, that Sri Lankan troops had not committed any war crimes in the war in the North, which ended on May 19 last year.  Replying to questions from the media on the latest video telecast by Channel 4 of UK, which showed barebodied young Tamils with hands tied behind their backs being shot by Sri Lankan troops, Fonseka said that the allegations were, “as always, general and vague.”  “Practically no such incidents took place. The Sri Lankan troops are highly disciplined,” he said.  “But if specific incidents are brought to the government’s notice, the latter is duty bound to investigate them. In the past, the army had investigated crimes committed by troops and even sentenced some to death,” he said (Express Buzz ; 20 May 2010).

Be vigilant of pro LTTE groups abroad: Gota - Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa in a message to Daily Mirror on the first anniversary of the victory over terrorism said yesterday that though the LTTE was militarily defeated in Sri Lanka, a lot of pro-separatist activity was taking place internationally. “While it is true the government has been able to regain control over each and every inch of land in Sri Lanka and restore peace, we have to keep in mind that we are emerging from a 30-year-long problem that had international as well as local connotations,” he said. He said. “Although the LTTE has been militarily defeated in Sri Lanka, a lot of pro-separatist activity is taking place internationally. The so-called Transnational Government, the Global Tamil Forum and other groups that operate under a supposedly democratic guise are led and supported by former LTTE cadres and activists. The motives of these international groups remain the same as that of the LTTE, and it is imperative that we in Sri Lanka remain vigilant. “Therefore, as far as the government is concerned, though the military phase of our operations is over, a different phase with a different modus operandi is continuing. While the government is committed to restoring normalcy and giving the people the full benefits of peace, the security forces, police and intelligence services must take certain steps to ensure that terrorism does not raise its head in this country again.” (Daily Mirror : 20 May 2010).

Special status like Kashmir urged for North, East : A political leader in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu sought the assistance of the UN and the international community to initiate steps to provide autonomy to Sri Lanka’s north and east regions on the lines of the special status that had been accorded to the Jammu and Kashmir state in India (Island : 20 May 2010).

FROM VICTORY TO NORMALIZATION - No war is fought sans atrocity. It destroys everything. Even when a war is fought with the best adherence to internationally accepted laws of warfare; it still breeds hatred, enmity and many a horrific sentiment that violates human decency. This may be why Union General of the American Civil War, William T. Sherman, said “I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation. War is hell.” Glory of victory sometimes overtakes humanity and humility. Hence normalization immediately after war is tedious (Daily Mirror : 20 May 2010).

Expunging ghastly images of terror era - This week we commemorate and reminisce soberly a national event of heroic proportions. For starters, it is no partisan triumphalism but an inescapable need to expunge the last vestiges of the ghastly terror tactics and cold-blooded child recruitment practices of a terror era. We are affirming the need for vigilance that ensures the co-existence of communities striving to live together as one nation. In a way, the LTTE’s decadence and ultimate doom came due to the moral treachery inflicted on the very people they were purportedly liberating. History was not on their side as they repeatedly eschewed practitioners of the art of political discourse in preference to suicide bombers. Tragically the LTTE had rejected the well-proven grievance-solving path to ethnic issues and opted for a short cut by way of the mythical Eelam which they brandished in execution style with its aura of horror. Dovetailing their sights to a higher moral content escaped their grasp (Daily News : 20 May 2010).

Solving issues behind bars - Integrating rehabilitated ex-LTTE combatants into society and carrying out prison reforms are two major hurdles. Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms Minister DEW Gunasekara speaks about future plans of the Ministry to address these issues. Q: What are the areas your Ministry is mainly concerned about? A: There are three main areas. Firstly, the rehabilitation of the former LTTE cadres. By May 2009, there were 11,000 surrenderees, and out of them 2,000 are already released. The remaining LTTE cadres are classified into three categories. Those who have charges against them with the CID or police, those who are still undergoing investigations or whose trials are pending are the first category. About 1,000 cadres are in this group. The second category is the cadres who are marginally involved in the atrocities committed by the LTTE. We have now released some of them, and we hope to release the other detainees as soon as possible. The majority is in the category of those who have been with the LTTE for a long period of five to 25 years. Most of them belong to the age group of 22 to 30 years (Daily News : 20 May 2010).

Aussie concerned over Tigers

Victory Day’, nay; should be ‘Liberation Day’ celebration - By K.T.Rajasingham - After three decades of separatist war - today Sri Lanka breaths fresh air of togetherness - a united country. On the fateful days 17 -19 May, 2009, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam was defeated. Its leader Prabhakaran and his entire family killed, their terror structures destroyed and decimated, area under their control taken over, in the end, country was liberated from the clutches of the Tigers’ stranglehold. Today, whole country has come under the control of the Government of Sri Lanka. The threat of separation, war, bloodletting, shelling, bombing, strafing by airplanes, suicide attacks, shootings, abducting, kidnapping for ransom are all over. But in everyone’s mind looms large, a question whether it was appropriate and a condonable act to accept the gruesome killings and destructions in the name ethnic conflict which raged well over 30 years (Asian Tribune: 19 May 2010).

Lanka offers war advice - No war is fought sans atrocity. It destroys everything. Even when a war is fought with the best adherence to internationally accepted laws of warfare; it still breeds hatred, enmity and many a horrific sentiment that violates human decency. This may be why Union General of the American Civil War, William T. Sherman, said “I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation. War is hell.” Glory of victory sometimes overtakes humanity and humility. Hence normalization immediately after war is tedious (Daily Mirror : 19 May 2010).

Report soon on Havana tigers - The government is expected to receive in the next few days an extensive report of a possible pro-Tamil Tiger build up in Venezuela after reports to such an effect was received by the Sri Lankan Envoy in Havana, Foreign Ministry sources told Daily Mirror online. The envoy, Tamara Kuliyanayagam who has rushed to neighbouring Venezuela is currently discussing the matter with the Venezuelan government officials and will report back to the Sri Lankan government. It is believed that the latest development in Venezuela comes following the creation of a Transnational Government of Tamil Eelaam (TGTE) in several European countries and elsewhere. The controversial TGTE held its inaugural sessions in the city of Philadelphia from May 17-19 in the US, where the LTTE is listed as a terrorist outfit. The meeting comes in the wake of the Sri Lankan government urging foreign governments not to give credence to moves by the LTTE to create a government in exile in support of an Eelam state. The Sri Lankan government last week also said that it has sought talks with the Tamil Diaspora as well as the International media in order to change their mindset about the LTTE and post war Sri Lanka. The government said that in order to give the proper picture the Sri Lankan government is keen to have talks with representatives of the Tamil Diaspora as well as international news agencies and media organizations. (Daily Mirror online: 19 May 2010).

Seeman talks politics - Filmmaker Seeman, a staunch supporter of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), converted his 'Naam Thamizhar' movement, a social outfit, into a political party in Madurai on Tuesday. He launched the political party on a day which marked the first anniversary of the “death of LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran”. Launching a tirade against the Central and State governments, he said they had failed to protect Tamils in Sri Lanka. “May 18 is a black day; a day Tamils can't forget that easily. The Congress-led UPA government at the Centre and the DMK government in Tamil Nadu have let down the Lankan Tamils,” he said in his vociferous speech. Seeman said he had launched the movement to take up the cause of Tamils living all over the world. “Naam Thamizhar will fight for the welfare of Tamils across the globe. It will contest the forthcoming Assembly elections on its own,” he said (India Blitz : 19 May 2010).

More rehabilitated LTTE cadres freed - Government has released another batch of ex-LTTE cadres who surrendered to the security forces during the final phase of the war. They were at the Vanni welfare Centres. Commissioner General of Rehabilitation Brigadier Sudantha Ranasinghe said that the new batch of 495 ex-LTTE cadres included 72 university students and 198 school children. They were handed over to their parents and relatives at a function held in Jaffna. Another group of 100 ex - LTTE cadres had undergone a heavy vehicle driving training course and they would be provided employment in Jaffna, he said. About 280,000 civilians gathered at the welfare centres in Wanni during the final phase of the war against the LTTE in May 2009. Of them, about 11,000 were identified as LTTE cadres. They had been sent to the rehabilitation centres run by the government with all basic needs and comprehensive vocational, physical and mental fitness training, Brig. Ranasinghe said. "We have rehabilitated 198 school children at the Ratmalana Hindu College, who had been recruited to the LTTE by force", Brig. Ranasinghe said adding that 72 university students recruited to the LTTE by force would be sent back to their respective universities (Island : 19 May 2010).

Northern lawyers end boycott - Courts in the Jaffna District returned to normal yesterday as lawyers ended a two-week boycott they had launched to highlight their concerns about security. They had given up the protest following assurances given by Chief Justice Asoka de Silva and the military, senior attorney and Jaffna Lawyers Association Treasurer B. Thavapalan said. The boycott was sparked by alleged death threats to Chavakachcheri District Judge T. J. Prabhakaran, who was investigating the murder of Kapilanath, a student at Chavakachcheri Hindu College. Legal proceedings at the Courts in Point Pedro, Kayts, Mallakam, Chavakechcheri and Jaffna were disrupted owing to protests. Thavapalan said a lawyers’ delegation led by association president Shantha Abimannasingham had met the Chief Justice in Colombo last week. He said the Chief Justice had promised to take steps to boost security for judges working in the Northern Province. Sources said Jaffna commander Major-General Mahinda Hathurusinghe had also held a separate meeting with the lawyers and re-iterated the military’s commitment to ensuring that residents led their normal lives without any fear. Jaffna High Court Judge I. T. Vignarajah also participated in the talks (Island : 19 May 2010).

Sri Lanka’s second independence Day: May 18, 2009 - by Fr. Vimal Tirimanna, CSsR - Continued from yesterday - The very first BBC headline at the 8.30 am (Sri Lankan time) news bulletin on the 19th May read: "Although the Sri Lankan government claims that the rebel Tiger leader is killed there has been no identification of his body yet"! Accordingly, the readers need to note that Prabhakaran was not a "terrorist" leader for the BBC, but only a "rebel" leader, such as a group of university students who are on rebellion in a campus! Will the BBC ever use such terminology in referring to their arch enemy, the Al Queda leader Osama Bin Laden? But the main point one needs to note in this regard is that even at its news bulletin at 3.30 pm (Sri Lankan time) by one Charles Hevaland, the BBC was pessimistic whether it was the real body of the LTTE leader which the Sri Lankan government by then was allowing to be photographed! As the bitter truth (i.e., the death of Prabhakaran) was slowly but surely dawning on to their heads the BBC reporter Hevaland having reported about the Sri Lankan government releasing photographs of the dead LTTE leader, immediately went on to distract the audience by elaborating "destruction and devastation in the north of Sri Lanka need to be addressed", and then, by drawing the attention of the audience to the "terrible" plight of the Tamil refugee women who were reported as saying that they did not know where their husbands were! The same reporter also lamented that there was a lot of screening before Tamils in those areas were admitted to the refugee camps, yet another ploy to diverge the attention of the audience from the fact that the leader of the blue-eyed boys of the BBC was really dead (Island : 19 May 2010).

Tamil Nadu the venue for Tigers’ revival after Prabhakaran ? - India has decided to extend the proscription of the LTTE by a further period of two years even as an year is being just completed following the assassination of the Tamil Tiger leader Prabhakaran. The reason cited by India for the extension is that there are prospects of the Tamil Tigers re grouping in Tamil Nadu . Even before two or three months have elapsed since the war ended in Sri Lanka (SL) , India’s former Security Advisor Narayanan said, there is a threat to India ‘s security from the Tamil Tiger Diaspora. In fact , the Tamil Diaspora and the Tamilnet including the Tamil Tiger website , after the death of Prabhakaran and the conclusion of the war , stated , the Eelam campaign which turned to ashes in the Nandikadaal Lake can only be restored to life by the Tamil Nadu people. In like manner , the conspiracy that was being hatched by the Indian Congress governmen together with Sri Lankan government and the International community against the Eelam campaign can also be defeated only by the people of Tamil Nadu, it added. The Tamil Tigers tried to rein in the Tamil Nadu people for their Eelam campaign even when Prabhakaran was living (Daily Mirror : 19 May 2010).

Celebration of victory over the LTTE - The magnificent victory over the LTTE led to the liberation of the country as a whole and the civilians in the North and East in particular from the clutches of a ruthless terrorist organisation. It was indeed an event which deserved celebrations on a grand scale. The country as a whole responded by celebrating the victory over the latter half of last year in a fitting manner with much merry making and fanfare. The government has now proclaimed a ‘week of grand scale celebration’ in order to refresh memory over the victory. If the celebrations are going to cost only a couple of millions one may not whine or whimper over it. But the practice is that none of the expenses involved are made known to the public-for obvious reasons! Any conscientious citizen is sure to question the financial burden of the celebrations when done on "grand scale" especially in view of the following facts: (Island : 19 May 2010).

US reacts to Tiger meet - While the controversial Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) held its inaugural sessions in the US city of Philadelphia over the last three days, the US Embassy in Colombo noted that the U.S. continues to investigate and prosecute individuals and entities that have provided material support to the LTTE. LTTE activist Visuvanathan Rudrakumaran who acts as its Coordinator said in a press statement emailed to Daily Mirror online that the TGTE meeting is being held in the US where the LTTE is listed as a terrorist outfit and comes in the wake of the Sri Lankan government urging foreign government not to give credence to moves by the LTTE to create a government in exile in support of an Ealam state. "We are very pleased to announce that the historic event of inaugural sessions of the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) are to take place at the National Constitution Centre (NCC) at the Independence Mall in the US city of Philadelphia on 17-19 May, 2010. NCC commemorates the 1787 Philadelphia Convention when the first steps were taken to write the constitution of America. The Declaration of Independence was also debated and signed in Philadelphia,” Rudrakumar said in the statement. Rudrakumar said that May 17-19 was chosen for the inauguration of TGTE in order to demonstrate the will of Eelam Tamil nation for its independence and coincides with the first year remembrance of the military victory against the LTTE (Daily Mirror : 19 May 2010).

Sri Lanka’s second independence Day: May 18, 2009

About a year ago .........

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

Please re-visit news about a year ago, from 15 to 23 May 2009 (click here).  

Video by Sri Lanka Army

WAR CRIMES WHILE FORCES ARE ON PARADE - By Gomin Dayasiri - “I write to advise you that the International Crisis Group will be publishing a report calling for an international inquiry into alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka. We have collected evidence that provides a reasonable basis to believe war crimes were committed in Sri Lanka by the Sri Lankan security forces and the LTTE. The evidence also provides a reasonable basis to believe that top governmental and military leaders could be held criminally responsible.” Louise Arbour President/CEO of International Crisis Group (ICG) to Gotabhaya Rajapaksa Defense Secretary on 15.April 2010. It was on 19 May 2009 (19/5) that the war against terrorism ended. On the eve of the first anniversary of having successfully eliminated terrorism, the crisis managers deem it fit to stricture and report Sri Lanka in an attempt to disgrace its Security Forces that won the war against an internationally recognized brutal terrorists. Security Forces, still loved by the people across the political divide, more than the Government, prepares itself for another unnecessary victory parade (Daily Mirror ; 18 May 2010).

The ICRC blots its copybook - By Rajiv Wijesinghe - After the diversion created by Radhika Coomaraswamy’s effort to distract attention from the actual ICES escapades, it may be useful to return to less purposive threats to our efforts to deal with terrorism. In this regard I should reiterate that I believe that the International Committee of the Red Cross is amongst the most innocuous of the agencies that engage with countries in difficult situations.  They are supposed to be apolitical, and generally they live up to this reputation. However they are sometimes dragooned into a political role, as when claims are made by some countries that assistance cannot be provided for rehabilitation unless there is a monitoring role prescribed for the ICRC. In general this would not seem a problem. However, admirable though the ICRC generally is, at the beginning of 2009 they decided to engage in a political role in Sri Lanka, or what they themselves would term advocacy. They issued a series of bulletins, which sounded deeply critical of the Sri Lankan government and its armed forces, and naturally these were made use of by the Tigers and their sympathizers (Rajiv Wijesinghe: 18 May 2010).

International Crisis Group: Report on Sri Lanka - by Asoka Weerasinghe, Canada -  The Editor THE EMBASSY; Ottawa - Sir: The International Crisis Group’s (ICG) report entitled ‘War Crimes in Sri Lanka’ calling for an independent international investigation into alleged war crimes by the Sri Lankan Government Armed Forces against civilians during the last phase of the Eelam War in April/May 2009 is troubling. To hound the government of that puny island who had every right to defend its sovereignty against the most ruthless terrorists in the world, the Tamil Tigers, who had haemorrhaged that island nation for 30 years with the support of foreign countries in the west, and wanting to give back the right-to-life to its subjects is not right. Especially when the international world should have been showering kudos on Sri Lanka for eliminating the scourge of the kings of terrorism in the civilized world which gave the international terrorists like the al-Qaeda, Taliban and Maoists the art of human bombs and unidentified objects for human road kills which have taken down over 100 of our Canadian soldiers in Kandahar. This is troubling (LankaWeb : 18 May 2010).

Reflections: One year after terrorism was vanquished - It's a year since we got the official announcement that the leader of one of the most ruthless terrorist organizations was dead. With the death of Velupillai Prabhakaran, Sri Lanka entered a new phase in its history. It was called 'Post-War'. Not disputing the fact that history does not hold any guarantees, it is safe to say that the Tamil community, regardless of grievance-perception/articulation and aspiration would have to think 100 times before opting to walk the bloody, destructive and ultimately self-defeating path that Prabhakaran chose. Sure, we can have the likes of R Sampanthan trying to be the A Amirthaligam of the 21st Century, spawning another Prabhakaran to cause another 100,000 deaths and to persuade several hundred thousands of Tamils to migrate, it will not bring 'Eelam' any closer. The Tamil community is inhabiting a political and historic moment where it is called upon to decide how it wants to identify itself, how it wants to chart the future of Tamil children in terms of other communities and in terms of the structures of the State, including the parameters of 'citizenship' as they exist and as they can be altered. The Tamil community will not 'self-determine' to self-destruct, but their so-called representatives may very well determine this for them. Time will tell (Daily News ; 18 May 2010).

Does India think Sri Lanka is its Colony ?……and another Interfering Indian Diplomat and the Church in Sri Lanka - by Charles.S.Perera - Indian politicians and Diplomats seem to have lost their heads over India’s new status of a fast developing economy in Asia. They try to dictate terms to Sri Lanka as it is an Indian colony. The Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao, reminding us of a previous Diplomatic intruder Robert Blake, has made a strange statement as if India has solved all its petty problems, and is now clean and proper to advise Sri Lanka as to how it should manage its political affairs. Of all countries India is the last that could advice as to what we should do or should not do in managing our affairs.. Because despite a significant economic growth India has not solved its many problems such as their violation of human rights of the outcaste community- the Harijans , unsettled Kashmir problem, Naxal problem, problems with tribal groups in the North East, trouble brewing in Andrapradesh, and Tamil Nadu. It has still to come to terms with its relations with Pakistan. Even the border problems with China have not been settled (LankaWeb : 18 May 2010).

A posthumous letter from Velu Pillai Prabhakaran - Channeled by Sesha Samarajiwa - To All Tamil Eelamists - From Velu Pillai Prabhakaran, Late National Leader of Tamils everywhere 7th Zone of Hell - My dear fellow Tamil Eelamists, Vanakkam! I started to write this letter –- one of the most important messages I have delivered – a few days before my untimely departure from the battlefield. Unfortunately, I was not able to email it because the damn enemy air force disconnected all my Internet connections. So, today, on my first death anniversary, I am compelled to use a member of the accursed Singalam race to channel this urgent missive to you. As you know, the Eelam project I launched 30 years ago ended on a sad note in the Nanthikadal lagoon a year ago. By then the Sri Lanka forces had reduced the territory I ruled from 65,000 square miles to a 2 square mile spit of sand in the Northeast of the island where I had force-marched 300,000 Tamils who served as my human shield. By then I had lost my grand headquarters in Kilinocchi and I was running the war from a sand pit as the Sri Lanka forces moved in for the kill (LankaWeb : 18 May 2010).

More ex-tigers released - More than 400 former LTTE suspects including 198 child soldiers were released to their families at a function in Jaffna this morning. Among the 425 former LTTE suspects handed over to their families were 189 former child soldiers who were being educated at a school in Ratmalana. (Daily Mirror online : 18 May 2010).

Tiger captain arrested - A former LTTE captain, who was injured in the final battle at Vellumulaivaikal, has been arrested in Mount Lavinia while preparing to leave for India, the police said today. According to the police the suspect, identified as Sridaran Aynkaran, had been hospitalized after sustaining injuries last year but had escaped and was preparing to leave for India when he was arrested. Following investigations the police also recovered a large stock of weapons, explosives and ammunition which belonged to the former Tiger captain. Among the items recovered were 10 claymore mines, hand grenades, wires, and other explosive material as well as a book containing the policies of slain LTTE leader Vellupillai Prabakaran. (Daily Mirror online : 18 May 2010).

International Crisis Group’s Call For War Crimes Investigations In Sri Lanka Stinks Of Tamil Tiger Sympathy! - By Sunil Kumar May - Here we go again! The matter has been laid to rest as far as the Tamil Tiger internal armed insurrection is concerned and only just recently the Sri Lanka Government has expressed concerns about the resurgence of A Tamil Tiger build up overseas and a group calling themselves the International Crisis Group seems to be aiding and abetting the very same cause! Sri Lanka fought a legitimate, precedent setting admirable war against enemies of the State resulting in global acollades but continue to be harried by the ludicurous accusations from a few persistent pro Tamil activist boot licking Canadians led by Mme. Louise Arbour and the ever dubious political turncoat cum ever confused political troublemmaker who almost turned the smooth functioning of the Province of Ontario into a comedy of errors during his term as Premier, Bob Rae another ubiquitous Tami Tiger sympathiser whose calls for “sanctions unless the regime submits to UN investigation of the conflict’s bloody final months” sounds all but pathetic towards their bifurcated Tamil ( Tiger terrorist cells notwithstanding) sympathies based on the huge anti Sri Lankan Government lobby by the resident pro tiger Tamils in Canada or a greater part thereof operating now mostly from underground locales (LankaWeb : 18 May 2010).

Aussie concerned over Tigers - Australia's Immigration Minister Senator Chris Evans has conceded there are concerns about suspected LTTE cadres being sent back to Sri Lanka. The government and the Australian Tamil Congress say an international report has highlighted some issues. The International Crisis Group has called for an independent inquiry into last year's civil war in Sri Lanka and says there's evidence of war crimes committed by both sides. Dr Sam Pari from the Australian Tamil Congress has welcomed the report, especially the call for any potential witnesses to be protected. "Because if they're sent back the Sri Lankan government will target them," he said. Senator Evans says while its too early to speculate, sending a suspected LTTE cadre back is an issue. "Clearly there is a major problem with the idea of returning serious former Tamil Tiger operatives to Sri Lanka without very strong assurances from the Sri Lankan government," he said. Earlier this year, the Australian Government froze asylum applications from Tamils, saying conditions in Sri Lanka were improving (Daily Mirror: 18 May 2010).

Hoist National Flag during Victory Week - Public Administration and Home Affairs Ministry Secretary D. Disanayake announced that the Government has instructed all public institutions to hoist the National Flag during the Victory Week commemorations from May 14 to 20. The Government also expects all citizens to hoist the National Flag at every home and private institutions to commemorate Victory Week.  It is a national need to respect the gallant Security Forces who sacrificed their lives to crush the LTTE terrorists and protect the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Motherland.  The Government reiterates it is the responsibility of all citizens to pay their gratitude and honour the war heroes who ended the terrorist war so that the people could live without fear (Daily News : 18 May 2010).

Sri Lanka’s second independence Day: May 18, 2009 - by Fr. Vimal Tirimanna, CSsR - Without any exaggeration, one may be able to call 18th May 2009 as the Second Independence Day of Sri Lanka. In a way what we are wont to call as our Independence Day (i.e., 4th February 1948), namely, the day Sri Lanka (then known as "Ceylon") gained independence from European Colonialism, pales into an insignificant horizon when one compares and contrasts the yoke under which we, all Sri Lankans were, namely, the indiscriminate terror unleashed on the whole country by the Liberation Tigers of Thamil Eelaam, popularly known as the LTTE. True, we were under the servile, foreign Colonial rule for some 443 long years, but then, the atrocities committed by our Colonial masters with regard to the most important human value, namely, human life, turns out to be nothing vis-à-vis the ruthless, local LTTE terror which lasted for some 30 years. In no way, is this article meant to white-wash or absolve the historically provable Colonial atrocities against us; rather by comparing and contrasting the LTTE reign of terror with the notorious Colonial rule the author’s sole intention is to highlight the undeniable fact of the absence of any Sri Lankan historical precedents (including Colonialism!) when it comes to the former’s ruthlessness in exercising terror with regard to human life and day to day living (Island ; 18 May 2010).

Some V-Day thoughts - One year ago today, Sri Lanka defeated terrorism and ended a protracted bloody war that had dragged on for nearly three decades. The conflagration towards its final stages had the trappings of a world war, so to speak, in that some of the military superpowers that had joined forces to destroy Hitler in the 1940s shamelessly rose in defence of Prabhakaran, a psychopath responsible for heinous crimes against civilians including genocidal massacres, child recruitment and ethnic cleansing. Grand preparations are being made to mark the first anniversary of V-Day. The government is justified in celebrating that epoch-making event but it should be wary of letting celebrations assume the character of an ostentatious display of triumphalism. There are tens of thousands of people still reeling from the war, which involved a heavy human cost. Over six thousand security forces and police personnel perished in the Eelam War IV and thousands of others have suffered disability. The LTTE lost over twenty thousand cadres including its leaders. The country ran red with it citizens' blood (Island : 18 May 2010).

International Crisis Group calls for war crimes probe - The International Crisis Group (ICG) has, in its report on Sri Lanka issued yesterday, claimed that it possesses ‘credible evidence’ that both the LTTE and the Sri Lankan security forces committed war crimes and called for an independent international war crimes probe. It claims that top government and military leaders were potentially responsible for those offences. ICG says that a section of the international community turned a blind eye to the human rights violations while they were happening and encouraged Sri Lanka’s tough response to terrorism. Full text of executive summary and recommendations of the ICG report: (Island : 18 May 2010).

Cohabiting ex-Tigers to be put in ‘shackles’ - The government has seen to it that some male LTTE cadres who have been co-habiting with their female counterparts in rehabilitation centres in the Vanni won’t go unpunished. They will be put in marital shackles shortly! The government has organized a mass wedding for those ex-Tigers cadres who have been living together (Island : 18 May 2010).

Victory Day celebrations postponed - The Government has decided to postpone the Victory Day celebrations which was scheduled to be held on May 20 at the Galle Face Green due to the prevailing unfavourable weather conditions and heavy rains. The war heroes commemoration ceremony which is due to be conducted at the War Heroes Monument at Parliament grounds has also been postponed,” Media Centre for National Security Director General Lakshman Hulugalle said. “We will conduct these two ceremonies once the current bad weather conditions are over,” he said. He said that the new date will be announced by the Government later (Daily News : 18 May 2010).

Why did TN send me back, asks Tiger mom - Slain Tiger leader Velupillai Prabhakaran’s mother Parvathi Ammal had expressed unhappiness at not being given permission to land in Chennai for medical treatment, pro-LTTE website TamilNet has said. “I do not know why Kalaignar Ayya (chief minister M. Karunanidhi) sent me back,” the site quoted the ailing octogenarian telling her doctor, A. Mayileruperumal at the government hospital in native Velvettithurai in north Lanka. Parvathi Ammal was admitted in this hospital after arriving in Colombo from Kuala Lumpur a few days ago. She was happy to be among known faces and insisted on being in the general ward with other patients, her doctor was quoted saying by TamilNet. It said Parvathi Ammal relished traditional Jaffna delicacies such as banana and cool milk. People around her were showering her with love, Dr Mayilerumperumal told TamilNet. The Indian immigration officials had denied Parvathi Ammal permission to enter Chennai when she landed at the airport on April 16 from Kuala Lumpur, where she was staying since her husband Velupillai’s death in the government camp in north Lanka last year. Chief minister Karunanidhi had said he was not aware of her coming and later offered assistance for Parvathi Ammal’s medical treatment if she agreed to get admitted in a government hospital and keep away from politicians and unauthorised persons (Deccan Chronical : 18 May 2010).

Government of India extends the ban on LTTE by another 2-years

An appeal to sponsor a child during this month of war heroes

WAR CRIMES IN SRI LANKA, ICG Asia Report N°191 – 17 May 2010 - by Ben Silva - The report by, ICG with the above title suggests that during the liberation of the occupied territory ‘saw tens of thousands of Tamil civilian men, women, children and the elderly killed’[4]. Clearly, ICG is ignoring the millions killed in Iraq and Afghanistan and hounding Sri Lanka, the victim of Tamil racist terrorism, funded by sources from Western countries. The garbage, baseless reports produced by ICG is nothing new (ref: http://www.lankaweb.com/news/items07/150807-2.html.) It appears that those in ICG that produce reports do not know how to separate facts from fiction and lies produced by LTTE sympathizers. ICG do not appear to know the meaning of accuracy, authenticity, validity, verification etc as they do not appear to check the validity of the secondary data they obtain from various sources. ICG need to check the integrity of secondary data, which they publish as gospel truth (LankaWeb : 17 May 2010).

18 MAY – REMEMBRANCE DAY OF SRI LANKA - By DR M D P DISSANAYAKE - On 18th May , Sri Lankans celebrate the most important day in their calendar. There is no other day in the hearts and minds of Sri Lankan mothers, fathers and children alike that brings the greatest inspiration to their lives. We all waited for this day for decades, most times we thought that day will never come during our life times. If that dream did not come true, as parents we could not close our eyes peacefully, not knowing what will happen to our land of peace and to our children. Each day we wake up to read newspapers, thinking Prabha has been captured and war has ended. But it was a long wait and at long last, our President His Excellency Mahinda Rajapakse delivered the goods. Our President has brought our “hope” home. Our President has brought “smile” to our faces. Our President has brought “courage” to our children. Adding an extra public holiday to the existing list of massive public and poya holidays is a burden for Sri Lanka. Yet declaring 18 May as a Public Holiday is vital for our nation. Perhaps the additional Public Holiday currently available for Sinhala New Year be replaced by Remembrance Day on May 18. We need to ensure that our children and future generations remember the value of this Day, the struggle and the final chapter of victory ought to be included in the educational curriculum in our modern history. Jayawewa, Sri Lanka Matha (LankaWeb ; 17 May 2010).

May 18 – The Day the Civilised Vanquished the Uncivilised - by Kumar Moses - It was Friday 17th September 1999. Laughter of villagers faded into the tranquillity of the night in remote Gongala village in Ampara District in Eastern Sri Lanka. HM Premasiri (29) went to bed late that night after a long pleasurable conversation with a large number of relatives and friends who had come to his place for a religious ceremony. Around two hours after midnight the serenity of the night was shattered by screams of men, women and children. About 75 Tamil Tigers and their accomplices, mostly women, brutally massacred 27 men, 17 women and 10 children to death. Tamil Tigers had plenty of guns but opted to make it as cannibalistic as they possibly could. Just one victim was shot with a revolver while the rest were killed with knives, axes and machetes. Most victims were hacked to death. Premasiri survived hiding under his bed. He could hear the hysteric laughter of Tamil Tiger female murderers and their civilian accomplices resembling what might be Satan’s laughter. For a moment he thought devils from hell have invaded the earth. When the morning came, the true horror of the attack became obvious. People found it difficult to attribute to humans. If anything came close, it was the horror female SS helpers including Irma Grese – known as the ‘Angel of Death’ – at Belsen and Auschwitz unleashed on unarmed civilians during WW2 (LankaWeb : 17 May 2010).

The Truth about War Crimes Allegations – Even Neo-LTTE Organizations Doubt War Crimes Stories - by Dilrook Kannangara - Obviously Sri Lankan security forces didn’t commit any war crimes. It is a well known fact. But some opt to keep it a secret. They are the losers of the 34 year old war that ended in May 2009. These elements allege that Sri Lankan security forces committed war crimes. To substantiate this claim, neo LTTE groups bring in totally irrelevant and fabricated nonsense. But the most convincing evidence of their dishonesty comes from themselves. LTTE, when functioning, collected US$300 million a year from the Tamil Diaspora. It’s a mammoth collection by any standard. US, Canada, EU members and few other developed nations banned the LTTE and its front organizations. Money that was freely flowing to the LTTE reduced drastically. However, their willingness to donate actually increased although fear held them back. There never was any ban on donating to Tamil organizations not connected to the LTTE. It is safe to assume that these organisations with no connection to military matters are getting the US$300 million or part thereof. Simply put it, the neo-LTTE comprising of GTF, TGTE, TAG (Tamils Against Genocide), etc. is as rich as the LTTE was (LankaWeb : 17 May 2010).

MAY 18TH THE DAY OF FREEDOM - by Ranjit Wickremeratne - May 18th 2009 was the day of FREEDOM to all citizens of SRI LANKA from Dondra to Point Pedro irrespective of race,color,religion or party politics. This was the day we raised our LION flag all over after thirty years of brutal war with the most ruthless barbaric killer Velupillai Prabakaran and his gang of murderers. I dont think anybody who loves his or her Motherland will forget that day except traitors to our nation. It was the day our true Sri Lankan war heros led by H.E.the President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his fearless brother Gotabaya brought freedom to the whole nation with pride and dignity with the help of our nations mighty war heros in the Sri Lankan Armed Forces. Our great nation was able to survived at last thanks to the President.Defence secretary,The three Armed Forces Army,Navy,AirForce, Police,Civil forces,clergy and the masses who prayed day and night to almighty to save our beautiful land from ruthless terrorism (LankaWeb : 17 May 2010).

LTTE regrouping to hit back at India, says ban order - India extended the ban on Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers because its cadres are regrouping in Tamil Nadu to take revenge against Indian leaders for not preventing its military rout last year, according to a home ministry notification.  Although the Sri Lankan military has decimated the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), its surviving members are "regrouping in Tamil Nadu in pursuance of their avowed objective of establishing separate Tamil Eelam", said the notification.   India, which first outlawed the LTTE in 1992 after the Tigers assassinated former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, extended the ban last week for another two years.  It said that through internet portals, the Tamil diaspora in the West was spreading "anti-India feeling among Sri Lankan Tamils by holding the top Indian political leders and bureaucrats responsible for the defeat of the LTTE", it said (Economic Times ; 17 May 2010).

LTTE Remains A Threat, Considers India As Traitor - A year after its destruction on the 18th of May, the LTTE remains to be a threat to India as the survivors of the LTTE quashing are said to be getting together to take a revenge on India as well as Sri Lanka. India has recently extended the ban on the LTTE by two years and the reason for the same is that the group still poses a threat to the country. The LTTE was destroyed last year with the killing of its chief Prabhakaran and his top aides. According to a gazette notification, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) “continues to pose a threat to, and are detrimental to, the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India.” The threat still persists as the surviving members of its group are believe that India is responsible for its destruction. The notification also said that although the LTTE had been decimated by the Sri Lankan military, its cadres are regrouping in Tamil Nadu "in pursuance of their avowed objective of establishing separate Tamil Eelam". They believe that Indians are “traitors” in having let them down and having helped the Sri Lankan army, their “enemies”, instead. They are now believed to be getting back together to prerare to take their revenge on Sri Lanka as well as India. The notificaton also revealed that the "Possibilities of these remnant cadres using India, especially in Tamil Nadu, as a rear base for their regrouping activities thus cannot be ruled out,” adding that the LTTE leaders, operatives and supporters "have been inimically opposed to" India's Sri Lanka policy (India Server : 17 May 2010).

LTTE remains a threat, says India - India extended its ban on Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers because the group continues to pose a threat to New Delhi and is now blaming Indian leaders for its rout last year. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) "continues to pose a threat to, and are detrimental to, the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India", according to a gazette notification.  It said that although the LTTE had been decimated by the Sri Lankan military, its cadres are regrouping in Tamil Nadu "in pursuance of their avowed objective of establishing separate Tamil Eelam".  Surviving members of the group view the Indian government as "traitors" for letting them down and the Sri Lankan government as "enemies" and want to take revenge, it said.  "Possibilities of these remnant cadres using India, especially in Tamil Nadu, as a rear base for their regrouping activities thus cannot be ruled out," it said.  The notification said the LTTE leaders, operatives and supporters "have been inimically opposed to" India's Sri Lanka policy.  India first outlawed the LTTE in 1992, a year after it assassinated former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi. The ban has been extended after every two years.  LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran and his top lieutenants were killed May 18 last year (Hindustan Times : 17 May 2010).

SL Appoints Inquiry Commission to Probe Violations - Sri Lanka today announced constitution of a 'reconciliation commission' to probe rights abuses during the last seven years of war with the Tamil Tigers as pressure mounted from international groups. The setting up of an eight member commission headed by Chitta Ranjan de Silva, Chairman, which also includes two Tamilians was announced in a statement issued by the Presidential Secretariat and comes as Colombo observes a year of its forces total victory over LTTE. The three decade war ended this day when Sri Lankan Army launched their final assault on the Tamil Tigers killing their supremo Vellupillai Prabhakaran. 'Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation' Commission constituted on Sunday will report on the lessons to be learnt from the events in the period, February 2002 to May 2009, a Presidential Secretariat statement said today.  The appointment of this Commission follows cabinet approval to a memorandum by President Mahinda Rajapaksa.  He said setting up of the commission should be seen as having regard to the "common aspirations of all we have collectively resolved that our people are assured an era of peace, harmony and prosperity." (Outlook India : 17 May 2010).

Digging into the past to build a better future… Sri Lankans this week mark the first anniversary of the defeat of the LTTE amid appeals that the celebrations should bind us together to meet future challenges. As we celebrate the dawn of peace in our motherland, perhaps we could also try to hate a bit less and love one another a bit more from now onwards. Preparations for the Victory Day celebrations got underway as 14 Sri Lankan MPs from the North and East called for silent prayers to mourn war victims. Also this week, India marks the death anniversary of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi. It is widely believed that terrorists eliminated him on May 21, 1991, because they saw him as a major threat to their violent separatist campaign. Sri Lankans have suffered enough and there is no doubt that we now deserve a ‘home-grown’ solution to our political issues. However, we need to remember that the 13th amendment to our Constitution and the Provincial Council Act were introduced as a result of the accord Rajiv Gandhi signed with our first executive President J R Jayewardene. Tamil was made an official language after this ‘intervention’ (Island : 17 May 2010).

Australian support for de-mining, Northern development - Australian High Commissioner Kathy Klugman pledged support to the Sri Lankan Government to speed up the de-mining program and develop agricultural and other development work in the North. The High Commissioner made this observation when she met Resettlement Minister Milroy Fernando at his Ministry in Colombo last week after a visit to the North. The Government’s IDP resettlement program is also progressing satisfactorily while the development work in the North is also improving. A lot of work is still to be done, Klugman said. Minister and the High Commissioner also discussed ways to enhance the economic and social status of the IDPs. Methods of improving the livelihood of the IDPs in the agricultural, fisheries and self-employment sectors to increase their income levels were also discussed. Minister Fernando requested the Australian government to assist IDPs in fruit and vegetable cultivation and provide seeds and agricultural equipment for the IDPs (Daily News : 17 May 2010).

A fundamental change in the manner we manage our foreign policy is a must - By K. Godage Former Ambassador - ...... There is also the matter of bad, wasteful appointments, I recall that in 1996 when I suggested the appointment of an Intelligence Officer to Bangkok after the sinking of the LTTE arms ship Comex Jous, the ‘brilliant men’ who manned the Defence establishment at the time, sent a Traffic Cop to Bangkok! Delhi is also an important commercial center (all the captains of industry and commerce are represented there) and we need good marketing men. In Delhi our Mission should in effect be a field force which should spend three fourths of their time building contacts and promoting Sri Lanka. The qualification for appointment should not be relationships or friendships as has been the vulgar indefensible practice in recent years; only those qualified in the management of international relations and trained persons in specialized fields should be appointed to our Missions, not friends and relations who are invariably nincompoops. I do wish this could be statutorily secured in the national interest. (Island : 17 May 2010).

Light oil lamp to remember war heroes - Ranaviru Seva Authority requested all Sri Lankans to light an oil lamp on Ranaviru Day (tomorrow) at 7.00 p.m. to remember war heroes who sacrificed their lives to free the country from LTTE terrorism. Ranaviru Seva Authority Director Sriya Danansuriya said special religious observances will be held on Ranaviru Day (Daily News ; 17 May 2010).

European Union’s dangerous game - Perhaps the wild swings in financial and stock markets recently will make people give closer scrutiny to what is going on in Europe, which would be a good thing for the world. According to most news reporting, markets are worried about a potential default by Greece on its sovereign debt, and the possibility of this spreading to other countries, including Portugal, Spain, Ireland and Italy. The agreement by the European Union and International Monetary Fund to provide up to $960 billion of support to the weaker economies, as well as to financial markets, has appeared to calm investors worldwide for now. But this does not resolve the underlying problem, even in the short run. The problem is one of irrational economic policy. The Greek Government has reached an agreement with EU authorities (which include the European Commission and the European Central Bank), and the IMF that will make its economic problems worse (Daily News : 17 May 2010).

Analysing the State Department Report - Supposedly one of the wonders of modern management studies is what is termed a SWOT analysis. We had to engage in them endlessly when trying to make good use of funding the World Bank provided for universities about a decade back, Sadly the present state of the universities suggests that, while the good universities have arguably got better, the others have not really developed in the ways that were anticipated. SWOT it seems turned out to be just that, worthless repetitive labour, not a way of transforming weaknesses by building on strengths, and turning what seem threats into opportunities. I was reminded of this when reading through the State Department report on incidents during the conflict in Sri Lanka. What some have seen as a threat seems rather to provide an opportunity to make clear the sterling professionalism of the armed forces in their struggle to deal with terrorism (Rajiva Wijesinghe : 16 May 2010).

Western Masochism, Eastern Suffering - Many years ago, I had been responsible for a great deal of noise very late into the night in my rooms at University. We had been playing Diplomacy, a game much in vogue for a few months during that period, and Benazir Bhutto, who did everything with much enthusiasm, had shrieked with anguish whenever she was let down in negotiations. The rest of the group were equally endearing, and we played on for hours, to the fury as I found out of the Senior Tutor. When I was letting the others out, I met him in the quadrangle, and greeted him enthusiastically, thinking he must have had an equally interesting evening (Rajiva Wijesinghe : 16 May 2010).

ICG: Report on Sri Lanka - by Asoka Weerasinghe, Canada - Madam Louise Arbour President/Chief Executive Officer International Crisis Group (ICG), Brussels, Belgium; Dear Louise Arbour: Just read a troubling news item in Sri Lanka’s SUNDAY OBSERVER, which said: “The International Crisis Group (ICG) will publish a report calling for an international inquiry into alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka. “They have sought information from Sarath Fonseka, the former Commander of the Army but none of the allegations framed by the ICG curiously touches Fonseka except to state that he was informed but they have named and charged the present Commander Jagath Jayasuriya with specific allegations.” Ummmm….lady, you are now into war games with Sri Lanka, and what is unfortunate is that you are fighting Sri Lanka with rats as your rolling tanks as I smell a rat in this attempt by ICG. What’s going on Louise? It looks like your report will be unfairly hostile towards Sri Lanka and cannot be taken seriously. It would be interesting for you to read my letter which appeared on Wednesday, August 13, 2008, in Ottawa’s EMBASSY political newspaper, under the title Arbour Deserves Negative Criticism for Sri Lanka Finger-Pointing, signed off Asoka Weerasinghe, Ottawa, Ont. The letter also carried an Embassy File Photo of you with the label ‘Former UN high commissioner for human rights Louise Arbour.’ (LankaWeb : 16 May 2010).

ICG Report: Sri Lanka guilty of war crimes? - By Gomin Dayasri - International Crisis Group (ICG) is preparing an exparte report calling for an international inquiry into alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka. To give credibility to itself, there will also be a vague finding against the LTTE. With the LTTE ceasing to exist – such an adverse finding would cause no impact on a defunct LTTE. ICG naming them too as a guilty party- will be a mere eyewash. It is the backroom boys at the ICG that are playing the role of scripting the ghost report to discredit the Defense Forces of Sri Lanka. Why does the ICG want an inquiry into war crimes in Sri Lanka? The objective of the report is to bring Sri Lanka into disrepute in the eyes of the international community. Unlike the non- existing LTTE, Sri Lanka is a live nation state that can be subjected to international sanctions. Western Powers and their allied NGOs were incapable of finding material to discredit Sri Lanka in its effort to defeat terrorism. These nations and their shadow NGOs’ failed having fought valiantly to preserve the LTTE; it now requires a busybody such as the ICG at their command, to unearth material to hang Sri Lanka. It is an assignment on a contract given to parties specialized in plumbing operation, as is the ICG. They are the front -runners on whose doctored reports the Western Powers and NGOs can activate their objectives of attempting to shame Sri Lanka (LankaWeb ; 16 May 2010).

Gotabaya rejects TNA’s demand - The Sri Lankan Defence Secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, has rejected the demand of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) that the Northern and Eastern provinces be de-militarised since the war against the LTTE had ended a year ago. In an article in The Sanday Times Gotabaya said that it would be “foolish” to relax military control given the possibility that the LTTE might regroup. On the very heavy military presence in the Wanni which was once under the control of the LTTE and which saw the heaviest fighting in Eelam War IV, he said: “The vast jungle terrain in the Wanni must be dominated – it is the land that the LTTE exploited to the maximum during the early stages of the campaign to wage guerilla warfare (Express Buzz : 16 May 2010).

End of a tin-pot dictator - An year ago on May 20, the Lion flags (national) dotted every inch of the country fluttering majestically in Sri Lanka, heralding the message that the war-ravaged country was totally liberated after 30 years. Guns fell silent with the declaration of ending the conflict after the military found the body of the LTTE leader.  People poured into the streets and celebrated the war victory while some segments including pro-LTTE elements, who did not want to believe that the LTTE was eliminated and its leader killed, spread rumours.  Back in Colombo, after witnessing the true military drama that trapped and killed the ‘monster’ who brought devastation to the entire nation including his own community, on May 19 morning 2009, I was shocked to hear these rumours.  Some said it was Prabhakaran’s dummy and various other rumours too were propped up as the interested parties were still unwilling to believe that he, whom they thought was invincible, was dead (Sunday Observer : 16 May 2010).

From June 18 to 20 at BMICH: Jaffna-made products at Hands Lanka - For the first time a special pavilion will be allocated to showcase 'Made in Jaffna' products at the third Small and Medium Enterprise Development Exhibition (Hands Lanka) which will be held from June 10 to 20 at the BMICH, Colombo. President of the Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Kosala Wickramanayake who will be hosting the event said that they got a very positive response form the Jaffna entrepreneurs and said that this was the reason they decided to allocate a special pavilion for them. He said that the new Minister of Small Industries, Douglas Devananda too has pledged his support for the exhibition. "Already over 10 entrepreneurs have confirmed their participation to showcase their products and there are also more inquiries," he said. He said that with the peace returning to the North and East resulting in availability of raw materiel self employment projects that were stalled have once again started. "This exhibition will give the Northern entrepreneur exposure to the Colombo and international market and he will also have the opportunity find buyers and even partners to surge his business," Wickramanayake said (Sunday Observer : 16 May 2010).

Tamil Tiger fundraiser jailed for six months in Canada VANCOUVER, Canada — A judge sentenced a Tamil Tiger fundraiser to six months in jail here Friday after the man pleaded guilty to raising money in Canada to help support the Tamil rebels in Sri Lanka. "This is a serious offence," said Justice Robert Powers, noting the "great harm to all Sri Lankans" from the violence of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Prapaharan Thambithurai, 46, was the first person to be charged under new Canadian legislation against financing foreign terrorist organisations. He had been out on bail since shortly after police arrested him in Vancouver in 2008. He pleaded guilty in British Columbia Supreme Court earlier this week to one charge of "providing financial services, knowing that they will benefit a terrorist group, namely the (LTTE)." (Sunday Island : 16 May 2010).

Australia welcomes new laws to combat people smuggling - The Australian Government has welcomed the passage of legislation to significantly strengthen Australia’s people smuggling laws. The Anti-People Smuggling and Other Measures Bill 2010 supports the Government’s multi pronged approach to combating people smuggling by enabling the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) to specifically investigate people smuggling and other serious border security threats. In addition, the Bill includes additional offences targeting those who finance or provide support for people smuggling activities as well as strong penalties that recognise the seriousness of people smuggling offences, including: (Sunday Island : 16 May 2010).

Some able person please write a history of the war What grade would Sun Tsu have awarded Prabaharan? -  Kumar David - If the legendary Sun Tzu (circa 400BC) author of that iconic work, the Art of War, was a rating agency like Standard & Poor’s, the only triple-A ratings he would have handed out are Alexander, Caesar and Genghis; in comparison even Hannibal and Bonaparte would have to settle for AA, though dozens of others have earned an A. America’s greatest soldier was Confederate general Robert E Lee who qualifies for no more than a B+ because of the unmitigated and unwarranted cock-up he made at Gettysburg. In the Twentieth Century’s WWI and WWII there were generals illustrious enough for posterity to frame as icons; but afterwards, Nguyen Giap, an ardent disciple of Sun Tze, did earn himself an A, but no higher as his territorial demesne was small, not continental. Actually Giap did not win a single major battle against a vastly superior enemy, but he won the ultimate prize! He would have done the Master proud (Sunday Island ; 16 May 2010).

International Crisis Group - How impartial would its report be? - by Gomin DAYASRI - The International Crisis Group (ICG) is preparing an ex parte report calling for an international inquiry into alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka. To give credibility to itself, there will also be a vague finding against the LTTE. With the LTTE ceasing to exist - such an adverse finding would cause no impact on a defunct LTTE. The ICG naming them too as a guilty party will be mere eyewash. It is the backroom boys at the ICG that are playing the role of scripting the ghost report to discredit the Defence Forces of Sri Lanka. Why does the ICG want an inquiry into war crimes in Sri Lanka? The objective of the report is to bring Sri Lanka into disrepute in the eyes of the international community. Unlike the non-existing LTTE, Sri Lanka is a live nation state that can be subjected to international sanctions. Western powers and their allied NGOs were incapable of finding material to discredit Sri Lanka in its effort to defeat terrorism. These nations and their shadow NGOs failed, having fought to preserve the LTTE; they now require a busybody such as the ICG at their command, to unearth material to hang Sri Lanka. It is an assignment on a contract given to parties specialised in plumbing operations, as the ICG is. They are the front-runners on whose doctored reports the Western powers and NGOs can activate their objectives of attempting to shame Sri Lanka (sunday Observer ; 16 May 2010).

UN intervention unwarranted: Lanka's legal mechanism in order - Prof. G.L. Peiris - Newly appointed External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L.Peiris in an exclusive interview with the Sunday Observer says the main task of the External Affairs Ministry will be to inform the world outside of the 'exciting opportunities' available here with the eradication of terrorism and get their maximum contribution in the accelerated economic and social development of the country. Countering LTTE propaganda is second in his priority list. Of the efforts being carried out to form a provisional government by LTTE residues, he said ". No country in the world has recognized it and no one has any intention of doing it. It is a mere charade. It has no substance and it has not got support from anyone. The whole effort is an empty meaningless exercise." (Sunday Observer : 16 May 2010).

Sri Lanka: Human Rights Watch maintains its misplaced rage, says Dr. Palitha Kohona - Ambassador Dr. Palitha Kohona, Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, has expressed his astonishment and aching disappointment on the Press Release issued by Human Rights Watch (HRW), following the announcement by the Government of Sri Lanka of the establishment of a Statutory Commission on “Lessons learnt and reconciliation” and on alleged “violations of internationally accepted norms of conduct”, particularly in view of the welcome expressed by members of the international community.  Dr. Palitha Kohona further said that the HRW spokesman, Mr. Brad Adams, has based his hysterical statement on inaccuracies and self-interpreted facts which betrays a mindset, not motivated by a decent impulse to highlight what is right (or wrong) but by a base instinct to dogmatically settle personal accounts. He said, however, Sri Lanka has continued along a determined path of addressing international and domestic concerns.  Although the Commission of Inquiry was announced only last week, the Sri Lanka Government had taken extensive and unprecedented measures to address issues arising from the conflict since its conclusion just 12 months ago, a period of time incredibly short for any country, much less for a resource scarce, conflict ravaged, third world country, he said.  Dr. Palitha Kohona said: “Approximately 294,000 persons who were held hostage and used as a human shield by the LTTE despite repeated calls for their release, including by the Secretary General of the United Nations, and rescued in May 2009 by the security forces, were cared for in pre-established camps by being provided with shelter, food, clothing, health care, etc. The vast majority have returned to their own homes within a short space of 9-10 months. This is a feat unmatched elsewhere in the world (Asian Tribune ; 16 May 2010).

 


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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 dead by the Sri Lanka heroic Security Forces

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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)

 

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LTTE Tamil Tiger Atrocities

LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorist's recent Atrocities

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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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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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