India denies SLAF training in Tamil Nadu

The Indian Defence Minister has stated that Sri Lankan Air Force personnel are not being trained in Tamil Nadu, following controversy over the alleged training last month. Widespread condemnation of the programme led to the Sri Lankan personnel being shifted out of Tamil Nadu into other parts of India, with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalitha in particular voicing her criticisms. See our earlier post: Jayalalitha slams Delhi over SL training as Karunanidhi changes stance again (16 July 2012) Defence Minister A K Antony told the Rajya Sabha, "At present no personnel of the Sri Lankan Air...

South Africa offers assistance for Sri Lanka’s ‘peace efforts’

The South African government has offered support and advice to Sri Lanka in its attempts to bring a political solution to the island. The External Affairs Ministry said a delegation visiting Colombo offered assistance to External Affairs Minister GL Peiris on Friday. Deputy Minister of International Relations Ebrahim Ebrahim and former Minister of Constitutional Affairs Roelf Meyer were part of the delegation. Peiris provided the South African delegation with an update on the developments in Sri Lanka, including resettlement of IDPs and rehabilitation of former combatants. He also gave the...

TNA Eastern election candidates threatened and vehicle attacked

The vehicle of the TNA's candidate for the upcoming Eastern Provincial council election, Markandu Nadarasa, came under attack on Friday. See here for report on Uthayan and Tamilwin . The incident occurred by Batticoloa temple way on Friday afternoon, when after conducting a campaign event, masked men on motorcycles drove past Nadarasa's vehicle and attacked it with stones, smashing the windows of the car. Meanwhile, another TNA candidate, Somasundaram Yoganantharasa, who had been at a campaign event by Kalladi, was threatened by men who arrived from a white-van. In a statement Yoganantharasa...

Body found in Akkaraipattu

Photographs Tamilwin The body of a 20-year-old man was found murdered in Akkaraipattu, Amparai district, on Friday morning, reports Tamilwin. The body was found by local residents - the head wrapped in polythene bag with severe wounds to the back of it. The victim has been identified as that of Ganeshamoorthy Riyaas, who worked at a restaurant in Akkaraipattu town. Warning - some readers may find the following photograph upsetting.

SL Police disrupt Tamil prisoner’s last rites and warn against funeral proceedings

The Sri Lankan Police have disrupted the last rites ceremony of a Tamil political prisoner who passed away on Wednesday, after spending weeks in a coma following an attack on Tamil prisoners by prison guards. The body of 37-year old Mariathas Nevis was handed over to his family in order to hold the last rites ceremony at around 5.30 yesterday evening in Passaiyoor, Jaffna Uthayan reported that Sri Lankan policemen entered the home where the last rites were being held and halted traditional instruments from being played at the ceremony. Furthermore, the policemen warned the family against...

Occupy and evangelise

The Tamil Buddhists Association of Jaffna has been trying to promote religious harmony between Hindus and Buddhists by distributing cloth to 100 schoolchildren from low income families, the Daily News reported. The Jaffna Vihara Chief has said that more would be done to spread the ways of the Dhamma to the North. The army is reported to be heavily involved in these activities. The Daily News quotes Colonel Amarasinghe of the 513 division as saying: "The Army is taking every step to promote and uplift the welfare of the people in Jaffna. Civilians too are showing keenness and enthusiasm to...

Tamil detainee attacked by jailers, dies

A Tamil political prisoner who had been in a coma for several weeks following an attack on Tamil detainees by prison guards at Vavuniya prison in June, died at 2:30am yesterday, reported Uthayan. The 37-year-old victim was admitted to Mahara hospital following the attack. The body was to be handed over to the victim's family today in order to have his last rites and funeral. The victim had been arrested by the Sri Lankan Navy in 2009 as he tried to flee the conflict, said his mother at the time of the attack.

TNA members attacked by Pillayan's paramilitaries

TNA members and supporters of MP Mahendralingam, were attacked by members of Pillayan's TMVP group on Wednesday morning, reported Uthayan. The TNA supporters were gathered at an election campaign event in Selvanakar, Batticoloa district, ready for the Eastern Provincial council elections in September. Last month, TMVP threatened residents Vaakarai and warned them against voting for the TNA in the elections. The attack was allegedly carried out by supporters of TMVP member Prasanthan, who initially began a verbal argument before physically attacking the TNA members.

Elderly Tamil woman found murdered in Koppai

The body of an elderly Tamil woman was found murdered in her home in Koppai this morning, reported Uthayan. The body, found beaten with open wounds and lacerations, is that of 70-year-old Kumarasami Mangayakarasi. Her jewellery, including earrings and bangles, were missing. Mrs Mangayakarasi lived alone in her home near Naasimar temple, Koppai Old Street. She is reported to have four children, who currently reside abroad.

Army increases random searches in Mullaitivu

The Sri Lankan Army has stepped up its random search operations in Mullaitivu reported Uthayan on Tuesday. Residents have complained that the searches have become even more regular than previously, with numerous bicycles, motorcycles and cars being searched. Amidst this heavy army presence, three Tamil men were found murdered in Visuvamadu, Mullaitivu district this week.