Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Last batch of Kokuvil camp IDPs return home

The last batch of inside Displaced Persons, living in a Kokuvil welfare camp in Batticaloa, was yesterday sent back to their villages in Trincomalee.
There were 321 persons from 91 families.
The number populace displaced in Trincomalee and Batticaloa stood at 41,000 and 150,000 in that order. They had been housed in 112 welfare camps. Meanwhile, 2,500 people belonging to 745 families, whose resettlement in their villages in the Trincomalee region had been delayed since of the presence of high safety zones, were provided with temporary protection in the areas of Killiveddi, Pattipidal and Pillankerny.
Courtesy: The Island

UN pledges US$ 5 million grant for de-mining

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres has pledged the Government a grant of US$ 5 million to accelerate the de-mining procedure on a request of Senior Presidential Advisor and Chairman of the Task Force on Northern Development Basil Rajapaksa.
According to Disaster Management and Human Rights Ministry spokesman, Guterres had a meeting with tragedy Management and Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe in Geneva on the sidelines of UNHCR decision-making Committee gathering yesterday. He has confirmed this outright assistance to Sri Lanka to the Minister to accelerate the de-mining process in the Northern province.
This money will be spent for the purchase of ten flailing equipment to accelerate the ongoing de-mining process.
Meanwhile, the UNICEF yesterday donated ten gully bowzers worth Rs. 24 million to the Government for the use of welfare camps where the civilians who were displaced by terrorist carnage have been given temporary somewhere to live
Resettlement and Relief Services Minister Rishad Bathiudeen accepted the gift on behalf of the Government at the UNICEF country office yesterday.
These gully bowzers are to be deployed to the happiness camps in Vavuniya and the Jaffna districts.
Courtesy: Daily News

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

More intern doctors to be appointed for North and East

The Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry will appoint 900 intern hospital today, 16 Sep, to government hospitals charitable priority to the North and East.
According to ministry sources, 325 intern doctors will be posted to hospitals in North and East including welfare villages established to house IDPs in Vavuniya.
The Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry will appoint 900 post intern doctors to State hospitals today. It is further said that there are 81 government doctors and more than 30 nurses with other primary healthcare staff including public health midwives and PHIs serving for the IDPs.
Ministry sources further said that it has by now taken steps to add one more 200 nurses for IDP care shortly. The patient/doctor ratio and patient/nurse ratio, 76.65 and 108.5 in that order, of the IDP welfare villages are almost similar with the national information in the country.

UNHRC head welcomes investigations by Sri Lanka into the Channel 4 video (By: Walter Jayawardhana

Navaneetham Pillai, head of the United Nation's Human Rights charge told Sri Lankan Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe in Geneva, Switzerland yesterday (Sept 15) that she welcomed the investigations done by the Sri Lankan administration regarding UK's Channel 4 doctored videocassette alleging human human rights violations against the country.
Sri Lanka's Disaster Management and Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe met Pillai to short her regarding the contentious tapes.
Minister Samarasinghe told the UN bureaucrat that two investigations, one in Australia, and another at the University of Moratuwa in Sri Lanka were conducted by experts and together have concluded the video clips were fakes depicting malicious deceptions.
Minister Samarasinghe said the broadcasters have not abide by the basic journalistic principle of verifying what they broadcast and they should abide by a code of conduct that all materials previous to publication should be thoroughly verified for its genuineness.
The doctored video which Channel 4 broadcasted alleging extrajudicial killings by the Sri Lanka Army, damaged the picture of Sri Lanka and even after it had been proved further than any reasonable doubt that they were hoaxes the alteration would not rub out off the damage 100 percent, he told Navaneetham Pillai.
Minister Samarasinghe also met the team of Philip Alston, particular Rapporteur of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights on extra judicial, summary or arbitrary executions as he is in new York. Going by the supposedly doctored tapes Alston had been very dangerous of Sri Lanka.
He also told the Alston team that he should be conveyed that the two self-governing investigations done by the Sri Lankan government should be welcomed by him. Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said since Alston rushed to make a declaration he should have the same amount of urgency to welcome the investigations. He said he would request him to welcome them as it is nothing but the right thing to do.
Minister Samarasinghe also briefed them on the IDP's and the regularization of LTTE ex-combatants.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Naval Troops recover hand grenades

Naval Troops emotionally involved to Naval Deployment Ambuwelipuram acting on in order received, healthier two Hand bullets in the universal area of Ambuwelipuram in Tricomalee around 1200hrs yesterday (12th September 2009).
The Grenades were establish in a dried up tank near the marine Deployment.
Courtesy : SL Navy

Sri Lanka to raise post-conflict issues at HRC

Sri Lanka will discuss the Government's tactics in the post conflict situation and the controversial Channel 4 issue at the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) which commences tomorrow in Geneva.
This is the first session that Sri Lanka is taking part in after eradicating LTTE terrorism. Disaster Management and Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said that he would place more stress on the steps taken by the Government to resettle IDPs, the means of addressing their livelihood and arrangements to look after them until they are resettled, rehabilitating over 10,000 ex-LTTE cadres, plans to reintegrate them into the people and plans for financial development of the North and the East.
According to Minister Samarasinghe, who left for Geneva yesterday, he will draw round plans to create ethnic harmony in the middle of different communities by promoting human rights.
"Basically we will talk about the new challenges that we are facing in the post conflict era", the Minister said. The Minister will also explain the canal 4 issue and its harmful belongings to the country's image. Minister Samarasinghe will meet the President of the Human Rights Council Martin I. Uhomoibhi, High official for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay, High official for Refugees Jose Luis Gutteres and other Ambassadors and High Commissioners of various countries at the sessions. "I will also explain to top UN officials about the Channel 4 issue", he said addition that the sessions would be a good forum to explain the truth.
Meanwhile, former Foreign Ministry Secretary and Sri Lanka's new Representative to the UN Dr. Palitha Kohona who is now at the UNICEF Headquarters, New York will meet top UNICEF officials including its Secretary General to discuss the issue of the expulsion of the UNICEF Communication Chief James Elder, who was allegedly transport out propaganda to support the LTTE.
Elder's recent statement which said, children locked up in the IDP camps were disappearing of malnutrition - has been refuted by the WHO which stated that 'the occurrence of malnutrition in the camps is no higher than elsewhere in the country', made the Government drive out him from the country.
Courtesy: Sunday Observer

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Govt. resettle 9900 IDPs to their hometowns

The resettlement of the internally displaced spearheaded by Special Presidential Adviser and MP, Basil Rajapaksa,Chairman of the Northern Task power yesterday (11 September) released 9900 internally displaced people housed at the Menik Farm in Vavuniya to their hometowns, these IDPs were provided transport from side to side state buses to reach their homes by the authorities.
The hometowns they reach are now cleared of mines buried by the LTTE throughout the war period.
Among those released were 6838 to Jaffna, 2170 to Trincomalee, 683 to Batticaloa and 274 to Ampara.
Among them were 74 students selected to the Jaffna University. They were sent back in particular buses beneath armed escort.
Northern Task power Head, Basil Rajapaksa, Ministers Risath Badiutheen and Douglas Devananda, Northern Province Governor G. A. Chanbdrasiri, Governor Eastern region Mohan Wijewickrema and more than a few other high ranking state officials were there on the time where all IDPs left with smiles to arrive at their homes.

Karainagar striding towards Prosperity with newly dawned Peace

Karainagar, an islet in the Jaffna peninsula in Northern Sri Lanka, is today lively with human activity. It is all set to reap the benefits of prosperity brought about with the newly-dawned peace after the liberation of the Northern Province from the LTTE terrorist clutches. The islanders, whose livelihoods mainly dependent on thriving fishing industry, are jubilant at the better freedom they knowledge with the lifting of fishing limits which had remained imposed to curb LTTE fear performance that caused huge suffering to the nonviolent nation for nearly three decades.
Today, the residents of Karainagar are experiencing a greater sense of safety since the Sri Lanka Navy has taken all measures to ensure the protection of their lives and to facilitate their livelihoods. Through the completion of many people-friendly group of people projects, the Navy has been able to win the hearts and minds of the people. One such event, the Buddhist fair of Poson, which celebrates the arrival of Arahath Mahinda and subsequent spread of Buddhism in Sri Lanka, was held on the island last June under the auspices of the Navy, sketch large crowds belonging to diverse religious faiths. The event helped strengthen the mutual bonds promoting peaceful coexistence among all ethnic groups living on the island. The consequent cultural interaction, which was made likely with the mediation of the Naval personnel emotionally involved to the Karainagar Naval base, created a pleasant atmosphere for the people to enjoy their newly-gained freedom.
The Karainagar fishing community is grateful to the Government and the Navy for the lifting of the fishing restrictions. The measure aimed at reviving fishing developed was implemented beneath the direction of His Excellency the President. The visit of Senior Presidential Advisor Hon MP Basil Rajapaksa, under whose direct supervision and guidance the lifting of fishing restrictions is being facilitated, has spurred the people's admiration. The regular monthly meetings conducted by the Navy with the contribution of the Karainagar fishing community have been very much appreciated by the people since the face-to-face sessions have helped solve many issues directly related to their immediate happiness. Fishing permits are now delivered to their doorsteps minimizing the hassles involved in obtaining them. Priority for security permission at Naval checkpoints is accorded to the persons transporting fish catches thus expediting the reach of fresh fish in the markets in time.
With the rising levels of income resulted by the Navy's facilitation, the life standards of the people of Karainagar have been improved. Under the Navy's assistance the communications developments on the island have been expedited with better roads for speedy transportation. President Mr. K. Iraj Sandiram and Secretary Mr. M. Ganesh of the Karainagar Division Fishermen's Cooperative Society, sending a letter of appreciation on behalf of its members, have thankfully acknowledged the contributions of the Government and the Sri Lanka Navy in uniting the people and helping the development behavior on the island. They express their heart-felt approval at the physically powerful bond that exists between the Navy and the citizens of Karainagar and thank the Navy for its genuine efforts at improving the group of people relations and living circumstances on the island.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Bulk of war like materials recovered

Troops engaged in payment operations in the districts of Mannar, Kilinochchi and Mullaittivu have uncovered a tow of war like resources yesterday (10th Sep), armed sources declared.
Troops in 57 Division healthier 02 x 120mm Motar bombs in the universal area of Pulliampokkanai and troops in Task Force 05 (TF - 05) have found 47 x RPG bombs (HE), 05 x RPG Bombs (Heat), 05 x 60 mm Illuminator bombs, 01 x SFG Hand grenade, 88 x 60mm bombs (HE), 36 x Argus hand grenades, 05 x Explosive Packets (1 KG each) and 02 x Electric detonators in the general area of Veravil in Kilinochchi region.
Meanwhile, Task power 08 recovered 65 x Anti personal mines in east of Puthukkudiyiruppu and 31 x 81mm rounds and a Battery container in the general region of Kappulankulam in Mullaitivu district.
Further, troops in Mannar district establish a Land pit in the general area of Kathirankulam.
In addition, Naval troops attached to SLNS Gajaba recovered 15 x Hand bullets in the universal area of Puthukkudiyiruppu yesterday (10th Sep).

Conditions in welfare villages excellent - Alok Prasad

"The conditions in relief villages in Sri Lanka are exceptional compared to other countries and the facilities provided by the Sri Lankan Government to the public in release villages are praiseworthy", said H.E Alok Prasad, Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka addressing a meeting in Colombo recently.
"Such the standard of these villages are outstanding and excellent", High Commissioner Alok Prasad was additional quoted as saying at the event held in approval of the armed forces provided by the Indian medical team.
The Indian medical team was in the island to uplift the physical condition amenities of the civilians liberated as of the terrorists.
He further spoken India's gratitude to the Sri Lankan Government for the amenities provided to the Indian medical team..
"The Indian doctors were send-off the island after providing a worthy repair. They were in the island for nearly eight months", Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva said highly commending the medics. Certificates of approval of work were presented to the doctors. Meanwhile, the Indian High official presented a stock of drugs to the Health Minister.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Channel 4 video: Local elements will be exposed soon (Chaminda Perera)

Transport Minister Dullas Allahapperuma yesterday said the restricted elements who were concerned in the manufacture of the video footage that was telecast on Channel 4 television will be divulged soon.
Addressing a press briefing at the Mahaweli Centre, the Minister said the Government has received in order that more than a few persons have connived with international basics in the production of this video footage which brought the country and the Security Forces into disrepute.
This is a campaign launched by a handful of persons who cautious the government's victory over terrorism as a individual setback.
We have proved that this video recording is a canard to disgrace the country and the Security Forces, he said.
Some elements who pointed their fingers at the Government over this video footage are now silent when it has been divulged that this footage was created with the mala fide intention of disgracing the Government.
Courtesy : Daily News

Sri Lankans in Japan make a donation for war heroes

Sri Lankans living in Nagoya city in Central State, Japan, have made a gift for the war heroes as to show their thanks on security forces personnel contributed their maximum to beat the LTTE terrorist association.
The donation comprising 120 wheel chairs, 25 clutches and 100 portable toilets were officially handed over to Secretary Defence in a charm purpose held at the defence office premises this afternoon, 10 Sep.
Chairperson of the Defence Ministry's Seva Vanitha Unit Mrs Ioma Rajapaksa handed over the wheel chairs and some other donated substance for the war heroes at the similar event.
"We should thank for all Sri Lankans in Nagoya city who contributed their barely earned money for the welfare of the war heroes" one of the envoy participated at the time said, language to
Representing the Sri Lankans in Nagoya, Mrs Chamila Priyanganie, Mrs G.A Wimalawathi, Mr Chandana Hettiarachchi, Mr W.G Premathilake, Mr S. M Jayalath, Mr J.A Siriwardena, Mr P. De S Kalinga, and Mrs Wickramasinha participated at the occasion.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Government to spend additional Rs. 350 Mn for welfare facilities of IDPs

The ministry of Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services presented a supplementary estimate of Rs.350 million seeking Parliamentary endorsement yesterday, 8 Sep, for the provision of welfare facilities of the Internally Displaced Persons sheltered in the wellbeing villages in Vavuniya, Jaffna and Mannar districts.
The IDPs who arrived in the government controlled areas were first accommodated in wellbeing centres and later transferred to welfare villages established with amenities such as security, shelter, food, drinking irrigate and sanitation.
The supplementary estimate was made as money allocated to the ministry for the day 2009 had proved to be insufficient to give facilities for large number of IDPs in the welfare villages.
Further, budgetary allocation for the year 2009 are not adequate to meet the communications costs already incurred and future expenses relating to stipulation of basic and wellbeing facilities for the IDPs.

"Uthuru Wasanthaya" develops 35 villages in Vavuniya district

Thirty five villages in the Vavuniya district are life form developed under the "Uthuru Wasanthaya " 180-days accelerated program launched by the government to remove the Tamil civilians sheltered in the wellbeing camps due to LTTE activities.
The programme is life form implemented on instructions of the President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the guidance of leader of the "Uthuru Wasanthaya" Task Force, Senior Presidential consultant and Parliamentarian Basil Rajapaksa. Northern Governor G.A. Chandrasiri has also instructed the relevant officials to go faster the growth process underway.
Under the development project it will get better the pre-identified communications of these villages to give more amenities for the Tamil civilians to be resettled in the region shortly.
Nearly 30,000 civilians of 35 villages coming under the Vavuniya, Vavuniya South, Vavuniya North and Settikulam Divisional Secretariats are due to be resettled on one occasion immediately after the infrastructure development is completed, an official said.
Infrastructure facilities for eating water, electricity, road, health, education, irrigation and farming are the main concerns of the development.

Monday, September 7, 2009

"Lahore attack on Sri Lankan cricket team last was financed by LTTE" says Pakistan Premier (By: Walter Jayawardhana)

Pakistani investigators have discovered the attack on the Sri Lankan Cricket team in Lahore, Pakistan was financed by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) fundamental group.
Pakistani Prime Minister Yousouf Raza Gilani told journalists that the finding by the Pakistani law enforcement establishment has been already conveyed to the Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa when they met recently in the Libyan capital of Tripoli.
He told reporters that a Pakistani side of detectives will be coming to Sri Lanka to further investigate the involvement of the LTTE terrorists and share information with the Sri Lankan government on the attack of the cricket team.
Pakistani Prime Minister told reporters detectives have now got indications to suggest that the terrorist group LTTE had financed the attack by 12 gunmen on the bus transport Sri Lankan cricketers, March 2009, near Gadaffi Stadium in Lahore.
In June this year a terrorist group called Tehrik-e-Taliban claimed blame for the attack on the Sri Lankan cricketers.
LTTE terrorists have maintained relations with the Pakistani and Middle Eastern terrorist groups and the widely used suicide jackets by the Middle Eastern suicide missions is an invention by the LTTE, security experts say.
In March the Sri Lankan cricketers were on their third day of the second test match when the attack occurred. The damage to the Sri Lankan cricket team would have been better if not for the bravery of the Pakistani driver of the coach who drove through a hail of bullets by the violent gunmen. Six members of the Sri Lankan cricket team were injured while six Pakistani policemen and two civilians were killed.
The global Cricket Council cancelled Pakistan as the venue for the World Cup matches in 2011 followed by the cancellations of many scheduled visits of abroad cricket teams to the country, costing the nation millions.

Channel 4 canard Lanka to send top official to London

Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa yesterday (06 September) said that a senior government representative would be sent shortly to the UK to investigate the so-called Channel 4 execution video. Rajapaksa expressed self-assurance that the country could face a threat posed by the LTTE propaganda machine, now that the LTTE had been crushed militarily. He pointed out that the international group of people should not be deceived by LTTE propaganda tactics.
Siri Hewawitharana, a Sri Lankan IT expert, who lately bare Channel 4 execution videocassette as a fake, subsequently pointed out that it was dubbed to give the effect of firing sounds. Ruling out that the video had been at first done by a mobile telephone camera he said that a high fineness video camera had been used for that reason. It had later been transferred to a mobile phone, he said. The poor quality dubbing, he said, betrayed the fact that it was not handled by specialists.
Courtesy : The Island

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Hundreds of Londoners to demonstrate against channel 4 (By: Walter Jayawardhana)

Hundreds of British citizens of Sri Lankan origin will show in front of London's Horseferry Road Channel 4 news television broadcasting station today demanding an apology or prove the authenticity of a video footage they broadcast claiming implementation style killing by the Sri Lanka Army.
The demonstration organizers ,British Sri Lankan Forum , says the footage the TV channel broadcast was actually a dramatization of a mock killing by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)to be used as propaganda material against the Sri Lanka government, eight months before it was broadcast by channel 4.
Sri Lal Dias , one of the organizers of the demonstrators of the British Sri Lanka Forum said, "Channel 4 cannot clean themselves up by simply saying they cannot authenticate what they broadcast. They are bound to broadcast object truth. They are not fair by its viewers if they broadcast dramatizations of incidents as truth."
He said they demand the Channel 4 either apologize or show the authenticity of the video footage they showed as true.
A petition to be handed over at the position says, "Channel 4 news in the UK broadcast unauthenticated video footage, accusing Sri Lankan security forces and the government of war crimes. This alleged incident shown on prime-time TV took the whole world by tempest and hugely damaged the reputation of Sri Lanka and our brave forces as well as discrediting the reconciliation, reconstruction and treatment programmes in Sri Lanka.
"Therefore, we would like to lodge our displeasure for broadcasting a fake video clip (most probably provided by a pro Tamil Tiger organisation) and request Channel 4 TV to make a public apology OR validate the video."
Dias said, the expression will be held Saturday September 5 from 11.00 a.m. to 2 p.m. in front of Channel-4 Television Corporation 124, Horseferry Road, London SW1P 2TX.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Sri Lanka's human rights minister says in Geneva that channel 4 video footage is part of an orchestrated campaign to tarnish (By: Walter Jayawardhana

Sri Lanka's Minister for Disaster Management and Human human rights speaking to this correspondent from the United Nations in Geneva said the British Channel Four video broadcasting of an alleged extra judicial killing of a Sri Lankan prisoner is a part of an orchestrated campaign to dull the state and shift notice from a recovery back to a conflict period.
"The highly suspicious Channel four said they could not be known any genuineness to a video allegedly shot back in January this year and broadcast eight months later," Samarasinghe said in Geneva after taking part in deliberations with Secretary General Ban Ki Moon.
He likened the alleged video to the stable statements used by the international media of four medical hospital in the war torn Wanni region but who later confessed that they were compelled to make those statements under the pressure of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
"This kind of things happened during the last stages of the conflict ; four doctors in the Wanni were used regularly by the international media to say there were huge person rights violations including bombing of hospitals and civilians by the Sri Lanka army. However after May 19, the end of the conflict, the doctors publicly admitted that what they said at the time was a consequence of extreme pressure brought on them by the LTTE. But unfortunately, by then, despite denial the damage had already been done."
"We also knew then there were certain video footage at that time smuggled out, according to sources, which turned out to be video footage shot by the LTTE stage managing or dramatization of the videoed incidents. One such incident was exposed on the defence website obviously showing a LTTE operative stage managing one."
Samarasinghe said, this is once again , in his opinion, another repletion of those incidents. He added, "But in any case a comprehensive study is happening in respect of the channel 4 video footage."
Mahinda Samarasinghe said during the discussion he has had with Secretary General Ban Ki Moon he showed grave concern about the video footage. He said he promised the SG a thorough investigation into the genuineness of the recording and keep him knowledgeable about the results.