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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2399

Monthly archive

An attack on democratic rights: New Zealand man jailed for sedition

A man involved in an axe attack on the electorate office of New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark was sentenced to two months jail on July 18 for committing an act of sedition. This is the first time in 64 years that anyone in New Zealand has faced a sedition charge. The successful prosecution and jail sentence underlines the assault on basic democratic rights now being carried out by the Clark Labor government. Timothy Selwyn, 32, was jailed for two months for publishing a “seditious” document and conspiring to commit willful damage. The maximum penalty for sedition is two years jail. Selwyn said his actions were in protest against a decision by the Labor government in late 2004 to annul Maori claims over the foreshore and seabed.

ASEAN opens it doors to Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka's international status got another leg up with Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) opening its doors for admission into Asia's largest security conference. This was announced by the Malaysian Foreign Minister Syed Hamid Albar yesterday who added that it was subject to consensus approval from ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) members.

LTTE sinks deeper into crimes against humanity by cutting off water supplies to the Tamils

The latest move of the LTTE to close the Verugal anicut (irrigation channel) at Mavil aru area in Trincomalee has backfired with farmers staging protests and the Peace Secretariat branding it as a war crime and crime against humanity. This arbitrary act has cut off water supplies to about 1,500 Tamil, Muslim and Sinhalese farmers. The closing of the sluice gates on last Thursday (June 20) will deprive the flow of water to around 30,000 acres of paddy, according to irrigation engineers. Residents in Selvanagar, in Seunuwara, Muttur, Uylankulam, Vilanapattu, Kiliveddy, Kallaru, Dehiwatta, and Neelapola will also be affected by this LTTE move to deprive water to civilians, most of whom are Tamils.

Despite Secret Poll, Race for UN Chief Is Wide Open

By Thalif Deen - Inter Press Service

A "straw poll" conducted in strict secrecy behind closed doors -- no stenographers, no Secretariat staff -- in the 15-member Security Council has left the race still wide open for a new U.N. secretary-general, who is due to take office next January. The informal poll Monday did not produce a single clear winner because none of the four candidates was able to muster 15 positive votes: a high water mark in Security Council voting.

Sinhalese fund the welfare of the Tamils and Tamils fund the LTTE killing machine targeting Sinhalese

By H. L. D. Mahindapala

In one calculated statistical blow the Sri Lankan Peace Secretariat, headed by Dr. Palitha Kohona, has blown apart the myth of the LTTE running a state of its own for the good of the Tamil people in the north and the east. Statistics revealed by the Peace Secretariat confirm that the LTTE has not only failed to provide the Tamil people their essentials for survival and well-being but also steal 10 - 20 % of the public funds allocated by the Sri Lankan government to run its one-man regime.

Sri Lanka's estate workers to demand for cost of living allowance

By Munza Mushtaq -- Reporting from Colombo for Asian Tribune

A likely wage hike, in accordance to the ever surging cost of living will be on the cards, when the Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) renegotiates the collective agreement signed with the employers' federation of Ceylon (EFC) later this month. The collective agreement signed between the CWC and the employers federation will expire on July 30th, 2006. At present the daily all inclusive wage of an estate worker is Rs. 205/-. This is applicable for both men and women. However the sources said that the CWC will push for a wage hike on grounds that the present pay is insufficient for estate workers whose families are often large.

British Police ignore UK's own anti-terrorism laws

By a Special Correspondent

British police became the laughing stock of passers-by at London's famous Speakers Corner at Hyde Park where a large cut-out of LTTE leader Velupillai Pirihaparan adorned a temporarily erected stage for meeting to commemorate "Black July" in Sri Lanka. Under the UK Terrorism Act 2000 the LTTE is a proscribed organisation and being a member of the organisation, displaying any symbols, signs or insignia or publicly endorsing its actions are offences under the law.

SLIM measures Brand Excellence and Performance

By Quintus Perera - Asian Tribune

In the global scenario Brands are powerful than Nations, in fact more powerful than many nations, said Wasantha Mallikarachchi, President, Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM) during a press briefing held at the Trans Asia Hotel, Tuesday to announce the SLIM Brand Excellence 2006 Competition, the premier awards ceremony in Sri Lanka which is scheduled to be held on 5 October at the Water’s Edge Hotel.

Deputy High Commissioner commends Tamil Nadu Government’s welfare assistance to Sri Lankan refugees.

Karunanidi with AnbazhaganP.M. Amza, Deputy High Commissioner for Sri Lanka in Chennai, thanked the Tamil Nadu Government for its generous assistance to the Sri Lankan refugees. “We welcome efforts by the Tamil Nadu State Government to improve the quality of the life of the refugees,” he emphasized. Amza thanked the Tamil Nadu Government for increasing the welfare benefits of Sri Lankan refugees to a monthly allowance of Rs.400 for head of the family, adults Rs.288 and children below 12 years Rs.180. At present Sri Lankan refugees are paid Rs.200 for the head of the family, adults Rs.144 and children below the age of 12 years Rs. 90. The increase in the monthly allowance for the Sri Lankan Refugees was announced in the last budget of Tamil Nadu Government presented by the State’s Finance Minister Professor K. Anbazhagan

Sti Lanka vegetable and fruit growers decided to reduce imports

Sunil C. Perera - Reporting from Colombo

Local Fruit and Vegetable growers and exporters have assured to reduce the imports of fruits, grains and vegetable before year 2010. Mr.Sarath Silva Chairman of the association said after 2010, the country can save over two billion rupees from these imports. Addressing after their Annual General Meeting held at Colombo on Monday, Mr.Silva noted a number of foreign scientists agreed to provide their technical assistance to improve local vegetable and fruit cultivation in the country using modern technology.

Bangladesh FM Accuses Israel of Terrorism

By Dr. Richard L. Benkin

In a statement to the Overseas Correspondents Association of Bangladesh last week, Foreign Minister M. Morshed Khan said, “We are deeply concerned over the current situation in the Middle East. We feel the world community should come forward to restrain the state terrorism of Israeli aggression on Lebanon and the people of Palestine.” Khan also referred to Israeli action as “fundamentalism and religious terrorism.” Khan also mockingly referred to the United States as the “guardian of democracy,” then accused it of holding a “double standard” favoring Israel and of sponsoring the Israeli action.

Forcible conscription of children: The most abominable crimes of our day - Ambassador Prasad Kariyawasam

Ambassador KariyawasamDetestable crimes have been committed against young children, particularly against Tamil children living in the Northern and Eastern parts of Sri Lanka by a rebel group known as the LTTE or the Tamil Tigers for over two decades. It is no secret that the situation has scarcely seen any improvement, as well-documented by none other than UNICEF, which has taken a lead role in bringing this sad state of affairs to public attention. These children have been forcibly conscripted for battle against the Sri Lanka Army and civilian villagers. Some of them have been programmed into suicide bombers.

Southern Sri Lanka's political leaders demand for the demerger of Northern and Eastern provinces.

An outfit claiming itself as an “Organization to Defend Rights of People in the East” met on Monday Mahinda Rajapakse, President of Sri Lanka at his official residence - Temple Trees in Colombo and handed over a letter demanding that the North and the East should be separated and administered by two separate provincial councils. The newly formed ‘Organization to Defend Rights of People in the East’ consisting predominantly of Sinhalese political leaders and a few claiming themselves as representatives of the Muslims in the East, pointed out that North and the East which were temporarily merged in 1987 are administered as one council on a gazette notification issued by the President annually.

Proof for "coalition against terror"

By Rama –Vinod - Syndicate Features

There was a time when the US practiced a policy of “public support and private pressure” to make Pakistan act against the terrorists. But the latest Richard Boucher taunt to India to show proof of Pak involvement in Mumbai blasts shows sophistry of a very high order. It is just such attitude that has encouraged Pakistan in its intransigence and wily duplicity, say the authors and advocate caution in India’s dealings with Washington.

Ranil paralyzed by "Mama syndrome": Milinda quits Political Affairs

RanilRanil Wickremesinghe, the failed leader of the UNP, faced another body blow yesterday when his closest ally, Milinda Moragoda, attacked the Poltiburo and pulled out of the Political Affairs Committee declaring that "the committee to become dysfunctional, and detrimental to the party's interests." "The Committee," he added, "has become the means by which the public is made aware of divisions and discontentment within the party, exacerbating problems, and leading many including myself, to question its usefulness. I had hoped that, in time, a more constructive atmosphere would evolve and enable me to make a modest contribution to its work."