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Sunday June 03rd, 2007

Minister ditches youth in Japan
Rs. 15 million job scam exposed
Minister of Religious Affairs Pandu Bandaranaike who had allegedly taken 15 youth promising them employment in Japan has ditched them and returned to Sri Lanka, The Nation reliably learns.
The Minister who had been part of a Sri Lanka – Japan cultural exchange programme had taken these youth to Japan in the guise of being ‘delegates’ of the cultural exchange programme.

Heavy attacks in Pompaimadu
Five soldiers died and 15 more were wounded yesterday when LTTE artillery fire targeted a military gun position at Pompaimadu, Vavuniya 11 miles off the Omanthai Forward Defence Lines, defence sources revealed.
An ammunition dump was also blasted when the Tigers directed a barrage of artillery fire from the direction of Omanthai towards Pompaimadu and the newly created 57 Division in Mannar.


A rough ride for Alles

Standard Newspapers Ltd. Chairman Tiran Alles being transferred from Nawaloka Hospital to Colombo National Hospital yesterday, under the watchful eyes of prison guards. Alles was arrested by the TID on Wednesday and remanded till June 13

WFP calls it quits in North-East
Leading humanitarian organisations led by the World Food Programme (WFP) has decided to suspend their activities in Batticaloa and Jaffna this month.
Reliable sources told The Nation that the organisations were compelled to take this decision due to the lack of funds, the deteriorating security situation and the incapability to travel to certain conflict prone areas such as Jaffna.
“The organisations have decided to suspend operations by June 15. However there is a possibility that they maybe ...




Akashi here on Tuesday to kick-start talks
Japan’s special peace envoy Yasushi Akashi will arrive in Sri Lanka on Tuesday to persuade the government and the LTTE to cease hostilities and begin negotiations.
Mr. Akashi is scheduled to meet with both government and LTTE leaders and will wrap up his visit with a news conference in Colombo.

Karuna takes pro-Pillaiyan cadres hostage
The Karuna-Pillaiyan crisis has reached new heights with Karuna cadres running riot in Batticaloa and Ampara harassing pro-Pillaiyan cadres and their families.
Sources based in the East speaking to The Nation on condition of anonymity claimed that more than 75 cadres who support Pillaiyan have been held hostage in camps under extremely deplorable conditions in Ampara and Batticaloa.

Rajiva Wijesinghe to head SCOPP?
Rajiva Wijesinghe, one time chairman of the Liberal Party and professor at the Sabaragamuwa University is likely to be appointed Head of the Secretariat for Coordinating the Peace Process (SCOPP).

Foreign News
Pakistan’s suspended chief justice to lead rally

ISLAMABAD, (AFP) - Pakistan’s suspended chief justice was to lead a procession followed by a rally on Saturday amid mounting political pressure on military ruler President Pervez Musharraf.

Mihin and Lanka Logistics under COPE microscope
Several recently established government owned companies will come under the purview of the main parliamentary committee looking into the workings of public enterprises.

EU willing to reconsider aid freeze if need arises
European Union (EU) Head of Mission Julian Wilson has assured that although several European donor countries, including United Kingdom and Germany, had suspended aid to Sri Lanka, they would reconsider this decision, if and when an emergency situation arises.

UNP reformists promise a country with proper governance
The United National Party (UNP) reform group leader and Minister Karu Jayarsuriya yesterday pledged to make the UNP a party which will serve the country and its people. The Minister also assured to make Sri Lanka, a country with proper governance, justice, peace and harmony.

SLIC assets worth Rs. 70 billion sold for less than seven billion
Sri Lanka and its citizens have been victims to an immeasurable loss caused as a result of the selling of the assets of the Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation (SLIC) worth about Rs. 70 billion for a mere six billion and fifty million rupees, this was disclosed to the Supreme Court during the filing of a Fundamental Rights Application.

Re-opening of entry/exit point brings relief
The re-opening of the Omanthai - Uyilankulam entry/exit points has brought relief to an estimated 350,000 Tamil civilians who were bottled up in the Vanni region since the entry/exit points were closed on May 22.




Non Cabinet Minister for Media, Foreign Employment Lakshman Yapa Abeyewardana visited the Lakbima photo journalist Sajeewa Chinthaka who was alledgedly beaten by Security forces personnel and now receiving treatment at the National hospital. - Pic by Ishara S. Kodikara
A Tamil family from the North loads their baggage into a three wheeler last afternoon, after police ordered all Tamils living in Pettah lodges to vacate within 24-hours. Pic by Nissanka Wijerathne


This is my Nation
Reading between India’s diplomatic lines

In diplomatic circles, even the rudest of communications is couched in polite language, where the real meaning of the message has to be searched for in between the lines. Yet, last week, India did not mince its words by issuing an ultimatum of sorts to Sri Lanka and the government in Colombo.

Political affairs
Mangala lashes out at cops

The government is in a dilemma. After 18 comparatively smooth sailing months in power, the Rajapaksa administration is gradually slithering down a political quagmire, especially due to its short-sighted policies.


Military matters
Fence mending and the India card

The week kicked off with the country’s top defence trio making policy statements on war and peace, that reverberated far and wide and dominated proceedings throughout the week, more than even on battlefront reports.

Even as the political tables begin to turn following the arrest of Tiran Alles and deposed Minister Mangala Samaraweera threatening to avenge the unfair treatment of his old friend by taking the government on, the question of ‘who is Tiran Alles?’ continues to be on many minds.

Cementing fraud by the bags
SLSI allegedly setting double standards
A persistent issue that concerns the general public in Sri Lanka is the constant violations of the code of ethics by public servants and elected officials.

Policy framework for school admissions
The national policy framework by the National Education Commission (NEC), applicable to all government and supplementary schools, with regard to admission into Grade 1, has captured the attention of a wide spectrum of society, most importantly school authorities and parents awaiting admission of their children.



Moody upset over Murali’s harassment
SYDNEY, (AFP) - Former Sri Lankan cricket coach Tom Moody says he is embarrassed by the derogatory reaction and constant harassment directed by Australian crowds towards Sri Lanka spinner Muttiah Muralitharan.
Muralitharan’s ultra-flexible bowling action has come under its heaviest scrutiny in Australia, where he has been called for throwing on two tours, prompting him to boycott Sri Lanka’s 2004 tour here.

Rohitha Indunil may be the most controversial person in the schools rugby arena today. Being the secretary of the Sri Lanka Schools Rugby Football Association (SLSRFA) he is in a hot spot with a few leading schools in the game having locked horns with the SLSRFA in courts. In addition, disciplinary and technical problems have added to the confusion with no one knowing where they stand.

Abeyratne rolls back the years when Trinity...
Whenever Bradby Shield rugby encounters between Royal and Trinity are discussed Ajith Abeyratne’s indomitable team of the late sixties is bound to figure quite prominently.
It is 40 years today since Abeyratne led a Trinity College side of invincibles that created history in this time immemorial series.

Point Blank
Howzat? for umpiring

The poor marks obtained by some of our leading cricket umpires in a written test on the laws of the game conducted by Sri Lanka Cricket is a sad reflection of the standard of umpiring in this country.
The excuse given by the majority of those who failed the exam is that it was conducted in English and not in Sinhala, the official language of the country.

Petes, DSS top rugby schools 2006
St. Peter’s College was awarded the Group ‘A’ rugby champions trophy in the division I league tournament 2006, while the award for group ‘A’ division II went to D. S. Senanayake College at the Singer rugby awards and sponsorship presentation held at the Kularatne Hall, Ananda College on Tuesday.


President Rajapaksa claims
LTTE weakened

The following is an unedited transcript of an interview between Al Jazeera’s 101 East presenter Teymoor Nabili and Mahinda Rajapaksa, President of Sri Lanka.
Teymoor Nabili: Mr President, the Tamil Tigers launched their first attack against your government and against the Sri Lankan people only weeks after you came to power. Why do you think it happened after so long of adhering to the peace plan, they suddenly decided to start attacking again?

“Govt can’t hide behind a military campaign for forever”
After having entered into a political alliance with the SLFP in 2004 to topple the UNF government, the JVP has in recent days become one of this administration’s worst nightmares. From the war, to the cost of living, to the government’s dubious deals, the JVP has emerged stronger than the main opposition UNP in many ways.





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