Sri Lanka's cabinet approves decision to withdraw from UN resolution

Sri Lanka’s Cabinet approved the decision to withdraw from co-sponsoring UN Resolutions 30/1 and 40/1, News First reported. The proposal to withdraw from the resolutions was presented by Minister of Foreign Relations, Dinesh Gunawardene and was approved unanimously by the Cabinet.

Sri Lankan parliament committee recommends enforcing burqa ban

The Sectoral Oversight Committee has proposed to immediately ban all kinds of face veils and face covers in public places, including the burqa, in a special report submitted to the Sri Lanka parliament.

India to sign MoU to develop Jaffna airport

India will sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to develop Jaffna’s Palaly Airport, PTI reports. An agreement has reportedly been reached for India to provide a grant of 300 million Sri Lankan rupees ($1.65 million USD) for the development of the airport, including terminal modification, electricity supplies, utilities and transit facilities. India’s Alliance Air began operating flights to and from Chennai in November last year, while civilian flights between Jaffna and Colombo was only started this month.

Army soldier arrested with cannabis in Vavuniya

Police arrested an army soldier for the possession of cannabis in Kanagarayankulam, Vavuniya on Tuesday (Feb 18). Police authorities stated he was caught with 500 milligrams of ‘ Kerala Ganja ’ at the military checkpoint set up at the Kanagarayankulam border. The 38-year-old army soldier, who is stationed at the Jaffna army camp, was caught whilst he was travelling towards his hometown district of Anuradhapuram from Jaffna.

Tamil political party repeatedly harassed by Sri Lankan police

Sri Lankan police have repeatedly targeted the Tamil National People's Front (TNPF) over its initiatives to provide financial assistance to deprived communities in Mullaitivu.

Home of student suspended for 'ragging offences' attacked

The home of a student suspended for offences of 'ragging' other students was vandalised and his belongings were trashed by four men, last week.

Safety reassurances demanded after sword-mob attack at Jaffna College

A protest was staged by students, teachers and staff at Jaffna College of Technology in relation to a sword-wielding incident and called for the necessary precautions to secure their safety to be taken. The demonstration took place yesterday morning (Feb 18) and condemned the actions of the mob whilst demanding that appropriate sanctions be taken against them.

Protestors show support for victims of 'ragging' and sexual harassment at Jaffna University

A protest was staged to condemn the ragging offences that took place against students and sexual harassment that was conducted via mobile phones, last Tuesday (Feb 11).

UN report urges Sri Lanka to deal with impunity to avoid the 'recurrence of human rights violations'

The Sri Lankan government’s inability to “deal comprehensively with impunity and to reform institutions may cause the recurrence of human rights violations” the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) said in its report on Sri Lanka's efforts towards implementing Resolution 30/1, which called for accountability and transitional justice through a hybrid mechanism. The report raises concerns over the “signs indicating a possible reversal of past commitments by the Government which would setback the promotion of reconciliation, accountability and human rights,...

Sri Lankan prime minister slams ‘born traitors’ and confirms withdrawal from UN resolution

Sri Lanka’s prime minister Mahinda Rajapaksa sent out a scathing warning to “born traitors who are waiting for the first opportunity to betray the country” as he confirmed his government was withdrawing from co-sponsoring a UN resolution on accountability for war crimes. In a statement released this morning Rajapaksa slammed the US sanctions on Shavendra Silva, announced on Friday over his involvement in war crimes during a military offensive a decade ago, stating it was a “collective punishment reminiscent of the practice in medieval Europe”.