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

Monthly archive

Gem Show

India’s non-parallel foreign policy interests

By P R Kumaraswamy - Exclusive to Asian Tribune

The ongoing debate in India over Iran’s suspected nuclear programme has one unintended benefit. It has clearly underscored the flip side of the zero-sum approach to foreign policy formulations. Driven by political correctness and ideological blindness a powerful segment of the Indian elite perceives the issue as a litmus test to prove India’s friendship with Iran. The impending confrontation between Iran and the UN Security Council is bound to accentuate the debate further. This either or approach to foreign policy is short-sighted because it ignores the inherent dilemma: non-parallel interests.

Sampoor: The resurgence of the spirit

By Dayan Jayatilleka

The liberation of Sampoor is not a violation by the government of the CFA. The occupation of Sampoor by the Tigers was a violation, which was corrected by neither the Colombo government of the day nor the international community. The Mahinda Rajapakse administration and the Sri Lankan armed forces have now reversed that violation, and by so doing, actually defended the CFA. However the CFA not only requires defending, it requires amending so as to make it more balanced. So far that idea has been rejected by the Tigers and if that remains the case, then the rectification of the CFA will have to be on the ground rather than at the negotiating table; in much the same way as it was defended in Sampoor.

Is Brain Drain Robbing Poor to Pay for the Rich?

By Thalif Deen - Inter Press Service

The continuous flow of skilled workers and talented professionals from developing to developed nations was once described by a U.N. official as the "Robin Hood syndrome in reverse" -- the rich robbing the poor. "The massive outflow of nurses, midwives and doctors from poorer to wealthier countries is one of the most difficult challenges posed by international migration," the U.N. Population Fund's (UNFPA) latest annual report said Wednesday

Palestinian Donors: What Mission?

By Nicola Nasser

The Palestinians have been too grateful and too helpless for too long to be critical of the political agenda of their donors who have practically nailed them down as political hostages to the donors’ money, which was promised initially to help build an independent Palestinian state, but ended as a political instrument effectively used by the Israeli occupying power. Donors have embroiled themselves in an internal Palestinian political crisis they themselves created when they withheld their aid as a collective punishment to squeeze out of power a political movement not of their liking, which ironically came to power in fairly and transparently democratic elections that were financed and monitored by none other than them.

Pakistan to intensify military aid to Sri Lanka

Munza Mushtaq - reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan

Pakistan's military ties with Sri Lanka are likely to see a major boost in the coming months with Pakistan declaring that the time was ripe to 'actively' enhance cooperation between both countries to counter terrorism. Pakistan's Interior Ministry Secretary Kamal Shah told a group of visiting Sri Lankan journalists last week that his country envisaged the need for 'enhanced and intensified' cooperation between the two nations with regard to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in September 2003, which is to counter terrorism, human trafficking and drug smuggling.

Norway provides financial support to produce fish silage in the Beruwala harbour

The Government of Norway has financed a pilot project to produce fish silage from fish waste in the Beruwala Harbour. The facility will be officially opened on September 8th by the Hon. Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Mr. Felix Perera. This was disclosed in a Press release of the Norwegian Embassy in Colombo. The Press release further said, "In a response to a request made by the Industrial Technology Institute in Sri Lanka, the Norwegian Government granted Rs. 50 million to conduct research and develop products from fish waste. From this grant, technical assistance was provided by the Norwegian Institute of Fisheries and Aquaculture Research.

Amparai Overran by Karuna Group, LTTE on the run

Latest reports reveal that cadres belonging to Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam are on the run, as Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal (TMVP) led by Colonel Karuna overran all their camps in the district. According to a press release by the TMVP, commanders and other leaders of the Prabah Group have fled the area. Early on Wednesday, TMVP launched an attack on the LTTE Camps in the Amparai district. T. Thuyvan, spokesperson of the TMVP said in a phone call to "Asian Tribune" that TMVP has launched an attack on all the LTTEE camps in the Amparai district simultaneously and their camps were falling like 'nine-pins' to the onslaught of their attack.

Sri Lanka: Whereabouts of LTTE massacred Muttur Muslims may never be known

By Munza Mushtaq - Reporting from Colombo for Asian Tribune

The whereabouts of the approximately 100 Muslims who were allegedly butchered by the LTTE after they were detained while fleeing Muttur may never be known with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) also reportedly giving up the search, highly-placed sources said. Taking into consideration that the incident happened 'quite some time ago', the ICRC has taken an unofficial decision to cease any further search into the fate of these Muslims who were allegedly killed by the LTTE for their alleged links to an Islamic organisation named Jihad.

Sri Lanka – Should future generations suffer the follies of the past?

As argued by the author previously, neither Federalism nor Asymmetrical devolution is considered an answer or a political solution to this conflict although a Federal structure might appear as one, for some. At best it may be a temporary solution to ease the pain caused by years of war, death and destruction. On the other hand, it could well be the beginning of another problem as discussed earlier. Federalism, unless it extends to redrawn provincial boundaries and it extends to the entire country, will tantamount to Asymmetrical devolution in one part of the country and that will not address the causes that Tamils have been fighting for politically and militarily for decades. It will only result in there being several groups of Tamils enjoying varying degrees of rights within the same country.

Lanka Bell reaches CDMA deadline nearly two years ahead of schedule

Sunil C. Perera - Reporting from Colombo

Lanka Bell, the first private fixed telecom operator to launch CDMA technology in Sri Lanka sold its 225,000th CDMA line early this week, 21 months ahead of the three- year deadline stipulated by the Telecommunication Regulatory Commission.(TRC). Managing Director Suren Goonewardene said that Lanka Bell which rolled out CDMA technology to Sri Lanka in May last year reached the target in record time, surpassing all expectations of both the TRC and the general public.

Inter-racial harmony through service, sports and music.

By Oscar E V Fernando

The Universal Peace Federation (UPF) is a world wide organization established to achieve peace through the promotion of inter-religious values. It is of special significance to Sri Lanka that inter-racial harmony can also be achieved through understanding of inter-religious values. UPF also had as one of its founding concepts, that today, national states have become too big for small things and too small for big things—hence the need for international cooperation and solidarity in all spheres of national development in this high tech global era.

Come September - Gem and jewellery exporters visits Facets 2006

Sunil C. Perera, Reporting from Colombo

Sri Lanka, the world's oldest source of the most spectacular gemstones are now displayed at the International Gems and Jewellery Show which is now in progress in the heart of the Sri Lankan capital. Sri Lankan gem merchants and exporters on Wednesday opened their annual gem and jewellery show –Facets 2006 at the BMICH, Colombo to grab new businesses and attract local and foreign visitors. Investment promotion Minister Rohitha Bogollagama inaugurated the Facets gem and jewellery show during his busy schedule.

China's oil diplomacy: Hugo Chavez makes high profile visit to Beijing

The state visit of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez to Beijing in late August highlighted China’s expanding relations in Latin America, which are heightening tensions with the US. For Chavez, closer ties with China are a counterweight against the open hostility of Washington. Venezuela is to expand oil exports to supply China’s rapidly growing energy needs in return for political backing and economic aid.

Blair - Brown

Gem Show 2

Knives out in the open as Labor Party rivalry heats up

Neville de Silva - Diplomatic Editor Asian Tribune

Blair - BrownIt was like another night of the long knives. Epithets were flying fast and furious as the Prime Minister Tony Blair and his Chancellor Gordon Brown, his heir apparent, confronted each other at two meetings yesterday to settle a simmering dispute that boiled over quickly. Blair’s aides are said to have accused Brown of having a hand in what they saw as a putsch as eight Labor MPs holding government jobs resigned because the prime minister has not set a date for the "orderly" transition of leadership he promised after the last election.