At least 800 dead in
Ivory Coast ethnic violence: ICRC
|BBC: At least 800 people have been killed in the western
Ivory Coast city of Duekoue this week, the International
Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has said.
They died in inter-communal violence in one district of the
city, it added.
The head of the ICRC delegation in the country said the
event was particularly shocking in its scale and brutality.
Fighting has continued in Abidjan between forces loyal to
the UN-recognised president Alassane Ouattara and the
incumbent, Laurent Gbagbo.
Ouattara was internationally recognised as president last
year after the electoral commission declared him the winner
of a November run-off vote, but Gbagbo also claimed victory
and refused to leave office.
‘Fearing for their lives’
The ICRC said delegates and volunteers from the Ivorian Red
Cross had visited Duekoue on Thursday and Friday to gather
evidence of the killings, which are believed to have taken
place on Tuesday.
“There is no doubt that something on a large scale took
place in this city, on which the ICRC is continuing to
gather information,” ICRC spokeswoman Dorothea Krimitsas
told the AFP News agency.
She said the Red Cross representatives had “themselves seen
a very large number of bodies”. They took 28 bodies to the
local morgue and more would be removed in the coming days,
“Everything seems to indicate that this was inter-ethnic
The head of the ICRC delegation, Dominique Liengme, said in
a statement: “This incident is particularly shocking in its
size and brutality.”
“The ICRC condemns direct attacks on civilians and reminds
the parties to the conflict to make sure that people in the
territory under their control must be protected under all
circumstances,” she added.
The Geneva-based organisation said tens of thousands of
women, men and children had fled fighting in Duekoue since
The city lies on a strategic crossroads in the west of Ivory
Coast and has been under the control of forces loyal to Mr
Ouattara since Tuesday.
The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said many
Duekoue residents were heading to the nearby town of Guiglo
“fearing for their lives”.
The national army has put up almost no resistance since
Ouattara’s supporters launched an offensive to oust Gbagbo
on Monday, sweeping down from the north to capture the
capital, Yamoussoukro, and the key port of San Pedro.
However, they have been unable to defeat those still loyal
to the former president in parts of Ivory Coast’s main city,
There have been fierce clashes outside the presidential
palace and the headquarters of state television in the
upmarket district of Cocody. Fighting has also been reported
in Plateau and Agban areas.
While figures for dead and wounded are unavailable, Doctors
Without Borders said it had treated at least 80 people over
the past two days, most of them young men suffering from
Residents of Abidjan say they are afraid to leave their
The BBC’s John James in Bouake says Gbagbo is holed up
inside the fortress-like presidential mansion, with his last
remaining allies and the Republican Guard.
“Laurent Gbagbo is going nowhere. He is the elected
president of Ivory Coast and he is going to be president for
five years to come,” a spokesman for Gbagbo’s Ivorian
Popular Front (FPI) said.
Our correspondent says many wonder whether he has now
decided to go down with the ship, a strongman who has
brought West Africa’s second biggest economy to its knees in
his determination to hang on to the presidency.
But Patrick Achi, a spokesman for Ouattara, said there was
no longer an offer on the table for Gbagbo to stand down
“He should stand trial in the International Criminal Court.
That is the only thing that he deserves,” he added.
The international community stepped up its pressure on
Gbagbo with a series of calls for him to stand aside.
The West African bloc, Ecowas, urged Gbagbo to “end the
suffering of his country”, while the UN mission in Ivory
Coast (UNOCI) said it was ready to “facilitate his departure
if that is his wish”.
Western diplomats say it is impossible now for Gbagbo to
escape defeat, but it is unclear if he will come of this
alive given the scale of the fighting around the
presidential villa, our correspondent adds.
UN forces are patrolling Abidjan’s business district in
armoured cars and flying helicopters to conduct
surveillance. France has meanwhile announced it is
increasing its force in Abidjan from about 900 troops to
A curfew called by Ouattara from 2100 GMT to 0600 GMT in
Abidjan remains in place. Land and sea borders remain
closed, although on Friday the country’s air space was
|Syria unrest: New
protests erupt across country
anti-government protests have erupted in several Syrian
cities after Friday prayers, despite heavy security.
Witnesses said thousands of people took to the streets
chanting “freedom”. The state news agency said protesters
were calling for reforms to be speeded up.
Reports suggest four protesters died as security forces
opened fire in the Damascus suburb of Duma.
Activists had dubbed Friday a Day of Martyrs to honour the
dozens of people killed during two weeks of protests.
President Bashar al-Assad said earlier this week that
demonstrations were part of a foreign “plot”.
In a speech on Wednesday, Assad did not announce the lifting
of emergency legislation as some analysts had predicted.
However, the president later said he had directed a legal
committee to look into lifting unpopular emergency laws - in
place since 1963.
Backing for Assad’s regime has also been in evidence, with
huge crowds joining officially encouraged shows of support
for the regime in Damascus on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, the US said two Americans detained in Syria for
several days had been released. State department spokesman
Mark Toner confirmed the news but could add no more details
due to “privacy considerations”.
‘Snipers on rooftops’
On Friday, protesters took to the streets in Deraa, Qamishli,
Hassakeh and also Latakia, witnesses said.
The marchers reportedly chanted “We want freedom” and “The
blood of martyrs is not cheap”.
One eyewitness in Deraa told the BBC that the army had used
tear gas to disperse the crowds and several people had been
Four people are said to have died when security forces
opened fire on protesters in the Damascus suburb of Duma.
Another report suggested as many as 10 people had been
Eyewitnesses told the BBC that snipers dressed in civilian
clothes shot at people from rooftops.
Unrest was also reported in the central city of Homs.
Syria’s Sana state-run news agency confirmed that protests
were held in Deraa and Latakia, but said “there were no
The cities of Qamishli and Hassakeh are in the north-east of
Syria. The region is the centre for the Kurdish population,
who until now distanced themselves from the protests over
the past two weeks, the BBC’s Lina Sinjab in Damascus
But in Qamishli and Hassakeh protesters chanted “Neither
Arabic, nor Kurdish, we want a national unity” in an attempt
to defeat any accusations of trying to make a Kurdish
movement, our correspondent says.
She adds that in Damascus there is a heavy security presence
around the main mosques - especially the Umayyad mosque
where the first anti-government protest began.
|Ex-Somali PM Samantar
to be questioned in US lawsuit
BBC: A judge in
the US state of Virginia has ruled that an ex-Somali prime
minister can be questioned under oath over allegations of
abuses and war crimes.
Mahamed Ali Samantar, who was Somalia’s defence minister and
prime minister in the 1980s, has denied wrongdoing.
He is accused of commanding his troops to detain, torture,
and kill members of Somalia’s Isaaq clan.
The court ruling means that the Somalis who have brought the
case will for the first time be able to question him.
A lawyer for Samantar argued on Friday that the case against
him should be thrown out.
But US District Judge Leonie Brinkema denied the request to
The original lawsuit was filed in 2004 by Somalis living in
the US under 1991’s Torture Victim Protection Act.
A federal judge later ruled that Mr Samantar was entitled to
diplomatic immunity, but last year the US Supreme Court
reinstated the case.
Earlier this year, the US Department of State recommended
that Samantar should not receive diplomatic immunity,
largely because there was no effective central government in
Somalia to request it.
Somalia has not had a functioning national government since
warlords overthrew President Siad Barre, under whom Samantar
served, in 1991.
tensions across Western Balkans
|SARAJEVO (AFP) - Croatia, Kosovo and Montenegro have
started to count their populations as part of a year of
censuses across the ethnically tense Western Balkans to keep
up with EU countries doing the same.
The three countries are the first in the volatile region,
torn apart by interethnic wars in the 1990s, to launch the
census this year.
Because of the painful history organisation of the count
sparked debate and controversy throughout the region: from
Macedonia, where ethnic Albanians fear that their importance
will be reduced, across Montenegro, where there are
complaints that Serbs are being “assimilated”, to Bosnia
which did not even manage to adopt a census law.
In Kosovo, where the last census was held in 1981, while it
was still a province in the Yugoslav federation, Belgrade
called on ethnic Serbs not to take part in the count
organised by ethnic Albanian authorities in Pristina.
Serbia, which refuses to recognise Kosovo’s 2008 declaration
of independence, insists that Pristina’s institutions are
not authorised to conduct a census.
Serbia’s top Kosovo official Goran Bogdanovic said recently
that Belgrade would support a census only if it was
conducted by the United Nations. He warned that Pristina was
planning to “steal” the census by trying to lessen the
number of Serbs still living there.
According to estimates, Kosovo has a population of 2.1
million of whom 90 percent are ethnic Albanians. Kosovo
authorities will be helped during the census by the European
statistics bureau Eurostat.
Belgrade, which has the largest number of inhabitants in the
region -- almost 7.5 million --- has postponed the start of
its own census to October 1 due to lack of funds, and was
planning to also hold it in Kosovo, which it still considers
part of Serbia.
In Montenegro, where 32 percent of the some 620,000
inhabitants in 2003 declared themselves as Serbs, a campaign
was launched recently seemingly pushing people to identify
The national television broadcast programmes insisting on
the “Montenegrin identity” of the Orthodox population in the
tiny mountainous country.
In response pro-Serb political parties and the Serbian
Orthodox Church have slammed such attempts at
In Albania where the census was postponed until November
questions about ethnic or religious affiliation sparked
debate. There are fears that results will show an important
rise in the Greek community as many Albanians in recent
years changed their identity and religion to obtain
residency and working permits in neighbouring Greece, an EU
The vice-president of Albania’s highest legal body the High
Council of Justice, Kreshnik Spahiu, has warned that a
census based on ethnicity is unconstitutional.
“We are against having to declare ethnic and religious
identity, especially since there is no legal and
constitutional framework in Albania for a census on such
basis, which could create strong tensions in the country,”
he told AFP.
In Macedonia which plans to hold its census in October the
number of ethnic Albanians, who in 2002 represented around a
quarter of the population of two millions, is controversial.
Opposition Albanian parties have voiced fears that the count
could be “abused” to reduce their numbers.
In Bosnia the census is so problematic that Sarajevo will
probably not even organise one this year.
The first postwar head count based on ethnicity is likely to
reveal the full extent of so-called ethnic cleansing and
upset the division of political power in many communities.
|Hole in cabin forces
emergency landing in US
WASHINGTON (AFP) - A
Southwest Airlines flight made an emergency landing in
Arizona on Friday after a hole blew in the top of the
aircraft, according to the airline.
Flight 812 declared an emergency “due to loss of
pressurisation in the cabin” and landed safely in Yuma,
Arizona about 40 minutes after takeoff, Southwest said in a
“Upon safely landing in Yuma, the flight crew discovered a
hole in the top of the aircraft,” the Southwest statement
None of the 118 passengers were hurt but one flight
attendant “received a minor injury upon descent,” the
airline’s statement said.
The flight departed from Phoenix, Arizona at about 3:25 pm
(1025 GMT) and was bound for Sacramento, California.
The plane landed at Yuma Marine Corps Air
Station/International Airport at 4:07 pm (1107 GMT), Federal
Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor said.
Yuma is 185 miles west of Phoenix and located near the
“We do not know the cause of the decompression,” Gregor
said. “People on the ground in Yuma are reporting there’s a
hole in the fuselage.”
An FAA inspector from Phoenix was en route to Yuma, he said.
The National Transportation Safety Board also was
|Nigeria votes for
parliament as landmark elections begin
- Nigerians vote for a new parliament on Saturday in the
first of a series of landmark elections this month as
Africa’s most populous nation seeks to overcome a history of
deeply flawed and violent polls.
Violence has occurred in the run-up to the vote, including
bomb blasts and politically related clashes, but officials
have pledged a free and fair ballot and a massive security
deployment was expected on election day.
The head of the electoral commission, a respected academic
appointed in mid-2010, delivered an impassioned plea in
Africa’s largest oil producer on Friday, saying “we must not
fail and we must get it right”.
Attahiru Jega said many expected that Nigeria’s return to
civilian rule in 1999 would have by now produced a “stable
democratic system in which peaceful, free, fair and credible
elections are routine and taken for granted”.
“Unfortunately, this is still not the case and Nigerians are
yet to reap the dividends of democracy,” he said.
The election for the 360-member house of representatives and
109-member senate comes ahead of the presidential vote on
April 9 and governorship and state assembly ballots on April
The ruling Peoples Democratic Party controls a comfortable
majority of seats in the parliament, but some analysts say
Saturday’s vote could significantly loosen its grip on the
Seats in the parliament are sought after in part because of
the bloated pay and allowance packages members receive in a
country where corruption is deeply rooted.
Accurate figures on how much they earn in total are
difficult to find because of budgeting methods that hide
certain allowances, pressure groups say.
Rights activist Festus Keyamo said they “are collecting
full-time salaries and other allowances they illegally and
fraudulently allocate to themselves”.
Some 73.5 million people have registered to vote in the
country, where the total population has been estimated at
some 150 million, divided roughly in half between Christians
|Czech trade minister
meets GL in Prague
On the second day of his
official visit to the Czech Republic, Minister of External
Affairs, Prof. G. L. Peiris met with the Minister of Trade
and Industry, Martin Kocourek. He also addressed the
Czech-Sri Lanka Investment Forum at the International
Chamber of Commerce in Prague, along with the Deputy
Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Vladimir Galuska. Continuing
his programme at the Czech Parliament, Minister Peiris met
with the Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, Ms. Miroslava
Nemcova, and the Inter-parliamentary Group of Friends of Sri
Minister Kocourek welcomed the visit by Minister Peiris and
appreciated the “staggering economic progress” achieved by
Sri Lanka in the past months. Against this positive
background, the Czech Republic hopes to continue economic
cooperation with Sri Lanka, including contributing to the
post-conflict development needs of the country.
Minister Kocourek said that the Czech Republic was strong in
sectors such as water management, environment management,
energy, petroleum, security, as well as transport and
tourism infrastructure. Czech investments in these sectors
could be backed by the Czech Export Bank and the Czech
Export Insurance Guarantee Agency (EGAP).
Minister Peiris agreed that these sectors matched the
current needs of Sri Lanka, while cooperation in other
sectors, backed by concessionary financing was also welcome.
Sri Lanka’s current infrastructure development plans and
growth in several other sectors such as tourism and
portfolio investment afforded wider opportunities to the
Czech side. Bilateral trade could also be greatly enhanced.
Minister Peiris welcomed the visit in April by a trade
delegation from the Czech Republic, accompanied by the
Minister for Environment. He also extended an invitation to
Minister Kocourek to visit Sri Lanka with a trade
Later in the day, Minister Peiris addressed the Czech-Sri
Lanka Investor Forum at the International Chamber of
Commerce in Prague along with the Deputy Minister for
Foreign Affairs, Dr Vladimir Galuska. The Ambassador of Sri
Lanka to the Czech Republic, M. M. Jaffeer, the CEO of the
Czech Export Bank, the CEO of the Czech Export Insurance
Guarantee Group also addressed the Forum. Approximately
forty Czech companies from a wide variety of sectors
participated actively in the Forum.
At the Parliament of the Czech Republic, Minister Peiris met
with the Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, Ms Miroslava
Nemcova, and the Inter-parliamentary Group of Friends of Sri
Lanka. Both sides exchanged views on the evolution of their
respective National Parliaments. Minister Peiris observed
that the Czech Parliament had successfully overcome several
challenges in its recent history. Sri Lanka too had
preserved its democratic parliamentary practices and
traditions despite severe challenges including terrorism.
Both sides agreed to continue contacts between legislators,
including exchanges of visits in the future.
|Dr Dayan at Yale
Dr Dayan Jayatilleka, Sri
Lanka’s Ambassador to France and Permanent Delegate to
UNESCO, and Honorary Senior Fellow, Institute of South Asian
Studies, National University of Singapore, presented a paper
by invitation at a workshop on Global Leadership held at
Yale University, USA from March 25 to 27.
The Global Leadership Workshop Programme, conducted by the
Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, Yale, covered
international leadership ranging across a spectrum of
The guest speaker was Marwan Muasher, a former Jordanian
Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister in charge of
governmental reform. He was Jordan’s first ambassador to
Israel and later ambassador to the United States and played
a key role in Middle East Peace negotiations for over two
decades. He is the author of ‘The Arab Centre: The Promise
Other paper presenters were:
• Nigel Bowles, Director of Oxford University’s Rothermere
American Institute and a Fellow of St Anne’s College,
• Ian Shapiro Sterling, Professor of Political Science at
• Allan Stam, Professor in the Political Science Department,
University of Michigan and formerly a member of US Army
• Haig Patapan, Professor in the Department of Politics and
Public Policy, and Director of the Theory and Practice
Programme of the Centre of Governance and Public Policy, at
Griffith University, Australia.
• Patrick Weller, founder and Professor of the Department of
Politics and Public Policy, Griffith University, Australia
and Director of Griffith’s Centre of Governance and Public
• Robyn Eckersley ,Professor and Head of Political Science
in the School of Social and Political Sciences, University
• Vinod Aggarwal, Professor in the Department of Political
Science, Affiliated Professor in the Business and Public
Policy Group in the Haas School of Business, and Director of
the Berkeley Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Study Centre
(BASC) at the University of California at Berkeley.
• David R. Cameron, Professor of Political Science at Yale
and the Director of the Yale Programme in European Union
• Quansheng Zhao, Professor of International Relations and
Director of Centre for Asian Studies at American University.
• Bruce Miroff, Professor and Collins Fellow in the
Department of Political Science at Albany, NY.
• John Kane, Professor in the Department of Politics and
Public Policy, Griffith University, Australia and currently
Visiting Professor at the Jackson Institute for Global
• Yi-chong Xu, Professor in the Centre of Governance and
Public Policy, at Griffith University, Australia.
• Alan Renwick, lecturer in the School of Politics and
International Relations, University of Reading.
Participants included Bruce Russett, Dean Acheson Professor
of Political Science in the Department of Political Science,
Yale; Stephen Skowronek, the Pelatiah Perit Professor of
Political and Social Science at Yale University; Bertjan
Verbeek, Professor of International Relations in the School
of Management Research, Raboud University, Nijmegen; Maria
Ivanova, Assistant Professor in the Department of Conflict
Resolution, Human Security and Global Governance at
University of Massachusetts and Director of the Global
Environmental Governance Project; and Alexandra Oliver,
Research Fellow at the Lowy Institute for International
|Asgiri Maha Viharaya
felicitates media minister
The Asgiriya Maha
Viharaya of Kandy, the Supreme Council of the whole Sangha
fraternity, which has received the respect and reverence of
the whole Sri Lankan society confer today (3.4.2011) the
honorary title of “Deshamamaka Janaprasadana Lankaputra”
(Patriotic Populist Son of Lanka) on Minister of Mass Media
The name Keheliya Rambukwella came to be discussed among the
people of this country when he joined the government’s
programme of eradicating terrorism from this nation and took
up the task to shoulder the responsibility as the media
spokesman by establishing the Media Centre for National
It is no secret that that the LTTE Terrorist Organisation as
an armed outfit were destroying the life of people in this
country for a period of 30 years by controlling a part of
this country’s territory. This terrorist outfit spent the
funds collected by them locally and internationally for two
purposes. One was to procure sophisticated weapons and the
other was to conduct publicity campaigns to bloat their
This brutal organisation spent huge funds with much
determination on their media hype locally and
internationally for their sustenance. Therefore, the LTTE
media was in a very advanced stage with the assistance of
The past leaders of this country although they wanted to
defeat the LTTE militarily, they did not have a proper
perceptive on the need to destroy the misinformation network
that promoted and propagated the terrorist ideals. Sri Lanka
never attempted to undermine this propaganda network.
It was through this misinformation and by distorting the
gains of the valiant security forces the brutal LTTE created
a niche as a liberation outfit in the national and the
Due to the strength of this fallacious propaganda, this
brutal outfit got deep rooted even in the minds of our
people as an outfit that “can never be defeated” and “the
world’s No. One”.
Keheliya Rambukwella, who realised that if the LTTE is to be
defeated militarily that the destruction of its propaganda
network is vital, not only established the Media Centre for
National Security, giving himself leadership to this
organisation functioned as its media spokesman and
heroically exercised his talents and capabilities for the
liberation of the motherland.
Using his talent of handling the language, the capability of
deliberations and the firmness in responding to questions he
reined in the local and international media personnel. He
gave wide and due publicity to our heroic security forces
personnel and pioneered in raising their morale. He proved
with facts and figures to the local as well as the
international arena, the pragmatism of the humanitarian
operation being carried out by the government and its
Rambukwella was a successful businessman owning many
business ventures before he entered politics. The experience
he gained on navigating his businesses he used in a new mode
to safeguard the unitary status of the country. Some persons
even ridiculed the national service being done by him with
great personal risk as “washing government’s dirty linen”
and described him as a person “marketing the war”.
But at all times he worked only for safeguarding the unitary
status of the country. War victories were given due
publicity for the freedom of the people of the motherland.
Keheliya’s brave arguments succeeded in shattering the
misinformation network of the terrorists and wash out all
their false claims.
People are now happily enjoying the fruits of its results.
The visionary astuteness of President Mahinda Rajapaksa to
use the correct person when it is required for the sake of
the country should be profusely commended. The great service
rendered by Deshamamaka Janaprasadana Lankaputra Keheliya
Rambukwella, will never be forgotten by the people.
Sarath Dananjaya Bandara Dambawinna
Former Provincial Council Member - Central Province
|Jaliya brings business
delegation from USA
An enthusiastic group of
top United States corporations visited Sri Lanka earlier
this week accompanied by Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the U S
Jaliya Wickramasuriya to pursue business opportunities.
The delegation, which included such notable companies as
Boeing, John Deere, Coca Cola, AECOM, Transinnova, AGL
Partners and Venture Global Partners, was welcomed in Sri
Lanka by a number of members of the Government, including
ministers and secretaries.
The delegation paid a courtesy call on President Mahinda
Rajapaksa on March 30, 2011.
During the meeting with President Rajapaksa, the business
executives pledged their commitment to share findings on the
island’s emerging trade and investment prospects with their
fellow entrepreneurs and the law makers in the US.
The delegates commended the President for his sincere
dedication to peace and ethnic reconciliation as well as
restoring normalcy at a rapid pace following the conflict,
which ended in May 2009. They were also highly impressed
with the numerous advances Sri Lanka has been making on both
the political and economic fronts under his leadership.
The President thanked the delegation for selecting Sri Lanka
as a business destination and noted the importance of
American companies coming to Sri Lanka. He told the group
that the Sri Lankan government will assist these companies
to every possible extent.
Sri Lanka’s economy has been thriving in the midst of a
world-wide recession, returning an 8 percent gross domestic
product in 2010. Growth in 2011 is expected to exceed that
amount and foreign investment is set to reach $1 billion,
according to forecasts by Sri Lanka’s Central Bank.
The U.S. is a $1.74 billion trade market for Sri Lanka, and
the Sri Lankan government hopes to expand US investment
further, including expansion in the tourism, manufacturing,
aviation, construction and IT sectors. During the last two
years the Office of the US Trade Representative has
co-sponsored two investment conferences in Sri Lanka with
the Embassy of Sri Lanka, Washington, D.C., to boost US
investment in the island nation.
Ranjith Canagasabey next Bishop of Colombo
The Venerable Dhiloraj Ranjit Canagasabey was elected as the
15th Bishop of Colombo by the Diocesan Council of the
Diocese of Colombo of the Anglican Church, on Saturday,
March 5, 2011. At a special session of the Diocese of
Colombo held at the Cathedral of Christ the Living Saviour
at Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Ven. Canagasabey was elected without
contest, obtaining more than the constitutionally required
majority from both the Houses of Clergy as well as Laity.
Bishop-elect Dhiloraj Canagasabey is presently Archdeacon of
Nuwara Eliya and resides in Bandarawela, serving as Chaplain
of St Thomas’ College, Bandarawela, where he was also the
Headmaster for a short period. He is an old boy of St
Michael’s College, Batticaloa, and had his education and
formation under the Jesuits of the Roman Catholic Church.
Ven. Canagasabey followed his theological training at the
Theological College of Lanka, Pilimatalawa, obtaining his
Bachelor’s degrees in Theology and later Divinity, from the
University of Serampore. He was ordained a Deacon in 1983
and a Priest one year later. He served in several parishes
before appointment as Archdeacon of Nuwara Eliya in 1997.
Prior to entering the ministry, he was in the hospitality
industry and worked at the former Hotel Lanka Oberoi. He is
married to Harshini and has a daughter, Dhilukshini, and a
The role of the Bishop in the Anglican Church is a unique
one in that he is the focus of unity, carrying all people
together and giving them the spiritual inspiration to live
out their baptismal lives, which demands transference from a
‘self-centred’ life to an ‘other-centred’ life. He also
plays the role of Under Shepherd to the Chief Shepherd, the
Lord Jesus Christ, and exercises pastoral care over his
Bishop-elect Dhiloraj Canagasabey’s episcopal ordination and
installation as the next Bishop of Colombo is scheduled to
be held on Saturday, May 14, 2011 at the Cathedral of Christ
the Living Saviour, Colombo.
|Pakistan envoy meets
The High Commissioner of the
Islamic Republic of Pakistan in Colombo Mrs. Seema Ilahi
Baloch paid a courtesy call on the Acting Minister of
External Affairs Neomal Perera on Friday at the Ministry of
External Affairs. The Acting Minister thanked the High
Commissioner for the Government of Pakistan’s timely relief
measures extended to help the people affected by the floods
in Sri Lanka. He also inquired about the progress in the
recovery efforts after the floods in Pakistan last year.
Further, they discussed matters related to the bilateral
cooperation between the countries and multilateral issues.
The High Commissioner was accompanied by her Third Secretary
Bilal Akram Shah.
|People’s Bank Annual
Report presented to President
The People’s Bank Annual Report 2010 was presented to
President Mahinda Rajapaksa last week by the People’s Bank
General Manager /CEO N. Vasanthakumar at Temple Trees. The
People’s Bank Chairman W. Karunajeewa, Treasury Secretary Dr
P. B. Jayasundara, Head of Marketing and Public Affairs
Deepal Abeysekera, Deputy General Manager (Human Resources)
Lionel Chandrasiri and Head of Finance Yohan Soza were also
for senior citizens
Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa headed an
awareness programme for senior citizens and government
servants in the Anuradhapura District on Friday under Divi
Neguma programme, aimed at uplifting the living standards of
one million families in the country. The main meeting was
held at the Indoor Stadium in Anuradhapura
(Pic by Sujith Kodithuwakku)