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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2557

Monthly archive

Burma Prayers

Bush in Asia next week to attend Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent for Asian Tribune

George BushPresident Bush’s trip to the Vietnam capital Hanoi to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings scheduled for November 18 and 19 and his plans to work with other world leaders is to “advance the core APEC goals of economic growth, trade liberalization and trade-related security”, according to National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley. Hadley told reporters here that the first day of APEC meetings will concentrate on “advancing trade and investment in a changing global context” and the second day will focus on “human security, economic and technical cooperation and APEC reform,” among other issues he further said.

Spring in the Americas

By Dayan Jayatilleka

Winds of change are blowing through the Americas, North and South; the USA and Latin America. These winds are blowing with varying intensity but in the same direction. In North America the shift is from the neo-conservative Republican Right to the moderate centre. In Latin America the shift is to the moderate Left or centre left, from the Right. In both cases the shift is away from the Right and in a comparatively leftward direction. The Democrats have won control of both Houses in the USA; Daniel Ortega the leader of the Sandinistas has been elected president of Nicaragua; Luis Inacio da Silva, better known as Lula, was handsomely re-elected president of Brazil on October 29 (having been forced into a run-off weeks earlier), and it is widely expected that on December 3rd, Hugo Chavez will win the presidential election in Venezuela.

International Aid Work a Deadly Profession

By Thalif Deen - Inter Press Service

The United Nations says that international aid work is one of the world's most hazardous professions, in which humanitarian workers are constantly threatened with -- or victims of -- kidnappings, harassment, detention and deadly violence. A U.N. study, currently before the 192-member General Assembly, points out that hundreds of aid workers and U.N. humanitarian personnel continue to face risks in some of the world's major trouble spots, including Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Israel and Haiti.

Maldivian government and opposition battle continues

By Munza Mushtaq – Reporting from Colombo

The Maldivian Government has called on the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) to honour their stated intention to call off the illegal events planned for 10 November. the MDP on Thursday decided to call off its Friday (November 10) assembly to accelerate constitutional reform, on grounds that the government was to impose an extreme crackdown on demonstrators. While the Government has always sought the path of dialogue, it is dismayed by the failure of MDP to demonstrate a public commitment to co-operation rather than confrontation.

UN’s top political officer discusses political process and aid in Myanmar

Ibrahim Gambari arrived in Myanmar yesterday and met with Government ministers for talks in which he emphasized the need for progress, including the release of political prisoners who are languishing in the notorious Myanmar’s prisons. Gambari, the top United Nations political officer, who arrived in Myanmar on 09 November, is continuing with four day official visit. He discussed yesterday transparency and the need to open up the political process to all the country's people, in meetings with representatives from various ethnic and other groups taking part in the National Convention.

New organisation claims responsibility for killingRaviraj – second "Tamil traitor," and warns other Tamil MPs to leave Tigers

Seerum Padai (Aggressive Force) a new organization has claimed responsibility for the killing of the Tamil National Alliance Member of Parliament Nadarajah Raviraj, according to a Tamil Website. This previously unknown organization claims in a statement sent to a Tamil News website that they were also responsible for the killing of Joseph Pararajasingham. Seerum Padai has issued a warning to the other MPs urging them to quit the Tigers if they do not want to be included in their list of Tamil traitors. Earlier on 27 December 2005, another organization called Sennan Padai (Force of Sennan) claimed responsibility for the killing of Joseph Pararajasingham.

Killing Of Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Parliamentarian Nadarajah Raviraj – A Voice In Protest

By Aruna Kulatunga Cartagena, Spain

I had known Ravi since the time he was appointed Mayor of Jaffna, introduced by British diplomat who had a good sense of the pulse of Sri Lankan politics, almost ten years now. While I had occasions to disagree with his views, I also appreciated the keen sense of political righteousness that made him, first, a successful Human rights lawyer and second, a legislator in an embattled and bitter legislature where rational discourse, like Ravi’s, tended to rise above the general malaise.

PAIM and Pakistan

By Dr Shabir Choudhry

That country is unfortunate citizens of which feel shy to speak its national language, and associate themselves with that country. I have noticed that nationals of many countries take pride in associating themselves with their country, and always speak their national language when they meet each other, especially when they are outside their own country. There was time when people from State of Jammu and Kashmir, known as Kashmiris felt shy to call themselves Kashmiris because of stigma attached to this name. They used to call themselves Pakistanis or Indians; and many of them didn't feel comfortable in telling people which was their home town. For example a person belonging to Mirpur or Kotli cities would proudly say he was from Islamabad or Lahore.

JVP condemns the killing of Parliamentarian Nadarajah Raviraj

Munza Mushtaq – Reporting from Colombo

The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna has expressed its condolences regarding the deaths of Parliamentarian Nadarajah Raviraj and his security officer. Mr. Nadarajah Raviraj, Parliamentarian of TNA has been
assassinated by unknown persons on Friday morning. The security officer assigned for his security too was killed in the shooting. "We don't agree with the political views followed by Mr. Raviraj. However, we respect the democratic right he has to follow such a view. It is the political heritage of murderous separatist tiger terrorists to savagely murder their political enemies. This murderous political culture that should be defeated need not be followed by any other party in Sri Lankan society. It need not be the common tradition of this society," the JVP said.

Journalist’s Death Penalty Trial Begins Monday

By Richard Benkin – Asian Tribune -

Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury, the Editor of the "Weekly Blitz" and a practicing Muslim, goes on trial for his life on Monday, November 13, on counts of sedition, treason and blasphemy. Since 2003, he has been beaten, tortured and imprisoned for his work in fostering peace and opposing radical Islamists in his country. In an election night phone call Rep. Mark Kirk (R-IL) promised Choudhury that he would continue fighting for the journalist in the new Congress. Of late, Kirk has been joined by a bi-partisan group of Senators and House Members, and he intimated to Choudhury that he will propose specific action when Congress re-convenes. Kirk was instrumental in forcing the Bangladesh government to free Choudhury from prison in 2005.

Sri Lanka Police conducts a massive investigation to arrest Raviraj’s killers

Sunil C. Perera - Reporting from Colombo

Police conducts massive investigations to uncover killers of the Tamil Parliamentarian Late Nardarajah Raviraj. He was shot dead in Sri Lanka's capital on Friday morning as he drove to work, officials said. His police bodyguard was also killed. Raviraj, 44, was rushed to hospital but later died of his wounds, hospital a spokeswoman said. His bodyguard, identified as Lakshman, was dead on arrival, she said.

U.S. deplores murder of Sri Lankan Parliamentarian N. Raviraj

Munza Mushtaq – Reporting from Colombo

The United States deplores the assassination of Mr. Nadarajah Raviraj, member of the Sri Lankan Parliament. "We express our deepest sympathy for this loss to the family of Mr. Raviraj, to his parliamentary colleagues, and to the people of Sri Lanka, who have been unjustly robbed of his energy and talent," the US embassy in Colombo stated in a news release.

Sri Lankan military bombards refugee camp, killing dozens

Dozens of displaced civilians were killed yesterday when the Sri Lankan military unleashed an artillery barrage on a refugee camp at Kathiraveli near Vakarai in the eastern Batticaloa district. Among the dead and injured were women, children and elderly. The killing of Tamil refugees is the latest atrocity carried out by the army this year as it escalates its war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The LTTE announced that 45 people were killed in the attack and another 125 injured. Several others later died of their wounds. Medical staff in the Batticaloa and Valachchenai hospitals told the media that about 70 people had been admitted, including 17 children. The camp, which had been recently established at the Kathiraveli Vikneswara School, held about 3,000 refugees, many of whom fled army offensives to the north in Muttur and Sampur in August and September.



George Bush

R. Sampanthan leader of Tamil National Alliance blames the Sri Lanka Government for the killing of Raviraj

By Walter Jayawardhana
R.SampanthanR. Sampanthan, the Leader of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), the proxy party of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) blamed the Sri Lanka Government for the Killing of the Jaffna District Member of Parliament Nadaraja Raviraj near his home in the heart of the capital on Friday morning, Colombo. Without substantiating his charges with any evidence the TNA parliamentary leader charged unnamed elements "inside" the Government or elements "close" to the government of having committed the murder of Nadaraja Raviraj.