BBS halal fight ‘concluded’, now call for removal of mosque

The Sinhala Buddhist organisation, Bodu Bala Sena, has announced that their fight against halal products is now over as they had “won”. National organiser Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thera said to a huge rally in Kandy that concerned firms would remove halal certificated products by Sinhala New Year in mid-April. The monk pledged that their new target would be the removal of a mosque in Kuragala, which was allegedly built on an ancient Buddhist site. The organisation claims that “Muslim fundamentalists” have taken over the site and destroyed historical evidence of the area’s Buddhist heritage.

Student protests against Sri Lanka sweep through Tamil Nadu

What began as an indefinite hunger strike by students at Loyola College on 8th March, has sparked protests that are taking Tamil Nadu by storm. University students from all over Tamil Nadu have launched similar hunger strikes and sit down protests, calling for action on the genocide of Tamils by the Sri Lankan state. Demanding a stronger UNHRC resolution that explicitly denounces the LLRC, and instead calls for an independent, international investigation. Students have also expressed anger at the execution of Balachandran Prabhakaran after images of his final moments emerged recently. IIT-...

Tamil Nadu film industry to protest against genocide

The Tamil Nadu Film Director's Association (TNFDA) announced on Sunday that it would be holding a hunder strike on Tuesday to protest against the genocide of Eelam Tamils. In a statement that TNFDA Secretary and filmaker, Ammer Sultan, said : "On March 19, we will go on hunger strike between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. against the ongoing genocide in Sri Lanka. Thousands of innocent Tamilians are being killed and this is our way of showing support to our brothers and sisters there." "We have requested all members of the Tamil film industry to stop shooting on that day and join us in the movement,"...

Jaya calls on India to support investigation into genocide at UNHRC

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has called upon the Indian government to not only support the upcoming resolution on Sri Lanka at the UNHRC, but to strengthen it and call for an international independent investigation into war crimes. In a letter addressed to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Jayalalithaa stated, “To assuage the legitimate sense of outrage and deeply hurt sentiments it is absolutely important that India takes a strong stand in support of the US sponsored Resolution in the 22nd Session of the UN Human Rights Council and more importantly moves necessary independent...

SL envoy calls Tamil Nadu protests a 'form of terrorism'

The Sri Lankan High Commissioner for India, Prasada Kariyawasam, said that the protests by Tamil Nadu students were a 'form of terrorism'. Speaking to CNN-IBN, Kariyawasam said : "Resolution on Sri Lanka in UN is uncalled for. We don't think there is a need for international community to get involved in Sri Lanka at this point." "Those who are protesting against Sri Lanka in Tamil Nadu have not visited Sri Lanka recently. They have never been there, they are going on hearsay and on the basis of lobbying by the LTTE sympathetic groups living abroad, outside the country. Some of these...

No people in army custody – Maj Gen Perera

A senior military commander of the Sri Lankan Army has claimed that not a single person was in their custody. "As a high-ranking officer of the army, I can say with authority that the persons claimed to be missing are not in the army camps,” Vanni Security Force Commander, Major General Boniface Perera said, according to the DailyMirror. “There are no unaccounted persons at all,” he told media at Camp Joseph in the Vanni. “I don’t think a solution could be found by staging demonstrations, carrying banners and blaming the army and the govt. They just need to come to the nearby camps and find out for themselves .

FT on Hambantota and China

See here for the Financial Times' comment on the opening of Hambantota airport and Sri Lanka's China links. See also US believed China bribed way to Hambantota contract (Aug 2011)

China will support SL sovereignty

The new Chinese President Xi Jinping has assured President Rajapakse that his country would continue to support efforts to protect Sri Lanka’s sovereignty, reported the DailyMirror. During a phone call on Saturday, Rajapakse congratulated President Xi and thanked him for China’s assistance in rebuilding the country. Read more .

Sri Lanka rejects UN Special Rapporteur visit request

Sri Lanka has rejected a request by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression to visit the island, reported ColomboPage . The rejection comes as Sri Lanka faces a resolution at the United Nations Human Rights Council, where a draft resolution "urges the Government of Sri Lanka to cooperate with special procedures mandate holders and formally respond to outstanding requests, including by providing unfettered access to the Special Rapporteurs". Sri Lanka's reason behind the rejection for an official was reportedly due...

British tourist denied entry for showing disrespect towards Buddhism 

A British tourist was denied entry into Sri Lanka when officials at Colombo's Bandaranaike airport deemed that he showed a lack of respect to Buddhism. The official said that when the tourist was asked about a tattoo of Buddha on his arm, the tourist has answered "very disrespectfully". The official added that such views would have been a "threat to his own safety" in Sri Lanka.