Government funds new chapters for Mahavamsa

The Sri Lankan Treasury has announced that they have allocated supplementary funds to help finance new chapters in the Buddhist chronicle, the Mahavamsa. The new chapters are set to include 3 dedicated to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, more than any of the predecessors in the text, according to reports. One official reportedly said earlier this year, “Rajapaksa’s achievement in ending the Island’’s 30-year separatist war has no parallels in the chronicle.” The project is set to be funded by the government's Department of Culture and Arts.

Keppapulavu IDPs appeal for international intervention to go home

Tamils from Keppapulavu who were moved out of the Cheddikulam IDP camp by the military this weekend, have appealed to the international community to intervene and allow them to go their original homes, reported TamilNet. Although the government has proclaimed that there are now no IDPs, many of those who were supposedly 'resettled' have not been allowed to return to their homes, but have instead been moved on to effectively another camp. See here for the petition. Extracts reproduced below: "The military establishment and governmental authorities have been as of recent times insisting that we...

Brazil army chief meets Gota

The Chief of Staff of the Brazilian Army has met with Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapakse in Colombo on Monday. General Joaquim Silva E Luna led a delegation of high ranking military officials from the Brazilian military. According to defence.lk the General and the Defence Secretary discussed ‘matters of bilateral relevance and mutual interests’.

Independent report accuses UN of complicity in covering up war crimes

An independent report compiled from the accounts of twelve United Nations humanitarian workers during the last phases of the war accused the United Nation’s of inaction, failure to speak out and willingness to comply with the Sri Lankan government’s rights violations. The report, published on TamilNet , was written by Julian Vigo, an independent volunteer that was not politically or economically tied to any organisation, who had never visited Sri Lanka. Identifying some of the twelve witnesses by name, the report described how the witnesses “resigned their posts, stating they could not...

India to support UNHRC on war crimes

India has stated that it will back the United Nations Human Rights Committee when they visit Sri Lanka to investigate allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity during the final phase of the armed conflict in 2009. According to Union Minister of State for PMO V Narayanasamy, India would give its full backing to the UN, and he further reportedly stated that Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh would not allow human rights violations to take place in any part of the world. Frontier India quoted Narayanasamy as saying , “Not only in Sri Lanka, if war crimes and human rights violations...

US Colombo embassy to close early due to protests

The US embassy in Colombo has announced it will be closed from 9:30am on Monday due to anticipated protests against the anti-Islam movie that has sparked protests worldwide and led to the deaths of US embassy officials in Libya. The embassy urged US citizens to avoid travelling near the embassy on Monday and to be cautious around protestors. "While no protest-related violence has been directed at foreigners, we remind U.S. citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn violent. U.S. citizens should avoid large crowds and monitor media coverage of local events. If you...

Australia removes family reunion concessions

The Australian government announced that the family reunion concessions for asylum seekers arriving by boat, will be removed. The minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris said in a statement: “These changes will remove the incentive for people to travel to Australia by boat with the intention of bringing out their families on humanitarian visas,” “We don’t want people risking their lives at sea on dangerous boat journeys and together with the implementation of all the other panel recommendations this measure provides clear evidence of the Government’s determination to break the people...

No more IDPs proclaims SL

The Sri Lankan military - in charge of resettlement - announced that there would be no further IDPs as all Tamils had been 'resettled', on Sunday. The Security Forces Commander Boniface Perera said, "A total of 1,186 people from 361 families -the last of a group of more than 300,000 displaced during the war in the north - will leave the Vavuniya Manik Farm to their original places of residence in the Mullaitivu district today,” “There will be no more IDPs in the country from today.” “The resettlement in the northern region was delayed because of de-mining in these areas. We have to make sure...

Documentary highlights human rights abuses in Sri Lanka

A new documentary has underlined the state of human rights abuses faced by Tamils in Sri Lanka demonstrating the persecution they are fleeing from on the island, reported Australia’s current affairs programme Lateline. Talking to the programme, former TamilNet correspondent A. Lokeesan, who managed to escape from Sri Lanka and journalist B Abeywardane stated that the documentary “Silenced Voices”, had assembled evidence of war crimes. Both men also stated that since the war ended, the violations have continued unabated. Abeywardane told Lateline, “I think the situation has actually worsened...

Finalise road map with TNA, India tells SL

India has urged Colombo to discuss and finalise a credible road map for the devolution of power with the TNA, during the Sri Lankan President's visit to the country. Asserting that such a move would send a 'positive signal' ahead of the UN Human Rights Council in March, the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh stressed the importance of converting past discussions into firm action. According reports, Rajapaksa said the issue had to be decided by the Parliamentary Select Committee. See here and here .

Pages