A brief encounter with Lasith Malinga

After bumping into Sri Lankan cricket player Lasitha Malinga, a Tamil Guardian reporter asked him a few quick questions.

Canada and Sri Lanka locked in High Commission dispute

Sri Lanka and Canada are locked in dispute regarding posting of envoys as High Commissioners in their respective capitals. According to the Sri Lankan Sunday Times , the Canadian government has made it clear that it will not accept Sri Lanka’s agreemo for a new High Commissioner in Canada until Sri Lanka accepts the credentials of Shely Whiting, who has been designated as the Canadian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka.

Holding CHOGM in Sri Lanka “absolute sham” – Dr Saravanamuttu

The Executive Director of the Colombo-based Centre for Policy Analysis has slammed the hosting of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Sri Lanka later this year. Dr Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu called the awarding an “absolute sham” and criticised that Sri Lanka, a government accused of war crimes, will be the chair of the Commonwealth. Speaking at the London School of Economics, Saravanamuttu detailed continuing abuses committed by the Sri Lankan state, saying the government’s actions were sustaining the sources of the continuing conflict. Although the war ended in 2009, the country was far away from a post-conflict situation, he said. Quoting a source from Jaffna, he said that “things look better but feel a lot worse”.

Arrest of NGO chief politically motivated?

The recent arrest of the head of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, a German NGO working in Sri Lanka, was initially said to have been made due to a “compensation issue” with a former employee. However a report in The Nation , has revealed that concerns had been raised about the work the NGO does on the island, including attending Tamil political meetings, which, according to the paper, would be an “act of interference in the internal affairs of a country”. The arrest of Nora Langenbacher, the head of the NGO,drew protests from the German foreign ministry. “It is reported that this individual attended a meeting organized by the Bishop of Mannar recently where strategies were discussed to develop a common political program for the Tamil Community. Political analysts point that this is an act of interference in the internal affairs of a country and not mandated by agreement or convention,” the article in The Nation said. “Earlier this year, the Social Democratic Party of Germany, which is the main opposition party in the country, submitted a motion on Sri Lanka’s human rights issues to the German Federal Parliament, concurrent with the UN Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva. The motion was defeated despite the efforts of the SPD. It has reportedly come to the knowledge of Sri Lankan authorities that the FES played an important role in drafting the said motion. Sources indicate that the FES has been sending confidential reports to the SPD concerning the post-conflict situation in the island.”

Pieris holds LTTE responsible for migrations and extortion

Sri Lankan External Affairs Minister GL Peiris told the Australian government that the remnants of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were still active in Australia and asked them to proscribe the organisation. In an interview with an Australian newspaper, The Australian, Peiris stressed that although the organisation was defeated in Sri Lanka and the war was over, the LTTE networks still intimidate Tamil families in the diaspora to extort money. He then went on to suggest that all people fleeing Sri Lanka were not genuine refugees but economic migrants, alleging that the LTTE were...

SL's ideal demographics

For five days from the launch of the official Sri Lankan CHOGM website, a 'Sri Lanka Factsheet' claimed that Tamils accounted for just 3.9% of the population, being outnumbered by 'Indian Tamils' at 4.6% and Muslims, whose numbers were also understated at 7.2%. The ethnicity and religion figures on the site were changed after the BBC's Charles Haviland called up the issue on twitter. The 'fact sheet' currently reads that Tamils form 11.2% of the population, Indian Tamils 4.2% and Muslims 9.7%.

SL cricket captain says 'can't really comment' on anti-Tamil violence

Speaking after yesterday's defeat to India in Cardiff, the Sri Lankan cricket team's captain, Angelo Mathews, said that he "can't really comment" on the anti-Tamil violence by Sri Lankan cricket fans that took place on Monday. Mathews said : "I think it was unfortunate there was a reaction today after the Oval game, but I can't really comment." Asked for his thoughts on Tamil protesters invading the pitch and disrupting play, Mathews said: "I was not really concerned. We as cricketers are not really bothered about what is happening around."

EU will construct 25,000 homes in Northeast

The European Union has confirmed it will build 25,000 homes in the northeast of Sri Lanka next year. The Head of Delegation, Bernard Savage, said a feasibility study is currently being carried out and a delegation would visit Sri Lanka next month to approve the project. Prime Minister of Sri Lanka D. M. Jayaratne commended the support shown by the EU.

Tamil activists call for calm at today's protest

Tamil activists in the UK have joined organisers of the 'Boycott Sri Lanka Cricket' campaign in calling for calm at today's protest in Cardiff and condemning any suggestion of retaliatory violence or 'revenge'. In a statement released yesterday British Tamils Forum said: "There are real concerns for the safety of Tamil campaigners at the forthcoming India-Sri Lanka match, to be held in Cardiff tomorrow, Thursday 20 June. In the face of these concerns, British Tamils Forum urges those attending the demonstration tomorrow to display the same courage, dignity and restraint shown by the Tamil...

SL ministers accuse #BoycottLKA activists of issuing death threats to cricketers

Sri Lankan ministers alleged today in parliament that the Tamil youth leading the 'Boycott Sri Lankan Cricket' campaign had issued death threats to Sri Lankan cricket team, reports the Daily Mirror. Claiming that the activists had been hired by 'certain groups to carryout various activities including death threats against Sri Lankan cricketers who are participating in the ongoing Champions Trophy one day tournament', the government said they would be investigating the matter. UNP MP Dayasiri Jayasekera urged the government to ensure the safety of Sri Lankan cricketers who had received death...