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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 945

Monthly archive

China courts Africa

By Chandra Mohan - Syndicate Features

China has just played host to an African summit which was attended by 35 heads of state and top representatives from 15 other nations from the 53-nation continent. It was certainly a historic gathering, being the first of the kind. It was also a manifestation of how the Chinese follow their agenda, showing contempt for the criticism that some of their foreign policy pursuits arouse in the rest of the world. The assembled guests in Beijing had reasons to be pleased. President, Hu Jintao, told them that Beijing would double the aid level to the ‘dark continent’ in another three years with a $3 billion preferential loan package and another $2 billion in export credit. China would also create a $5 billion fund to encourage investment (Chinese) in Africa. In addition, he also announced that loans (Chinese) given to the poorest countries in the continent would be written off and the list of (African) goods that can be imported by China would be enlarged further.

Norwegian special envoy skips New Delhi, while Erik Solheim was by the bedside of ailing Anton Balasingham in London.

Norwegian Special Envoy Jon Hanssen-Bauer's left back to Oslo empty handed on Friday from Colombo. Normally it was the practice of the Norwegian peace envoys to leave for New Delhi after visiting Colombo to debrief the India’s Secretary for External Affairs with details of talks they had with the Sri Lanka Government leaders, as well as with the leaders of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. According to diplomatic sources in Colombo, this time Hanssen-Bauer's flew straight to Oslo without going to New Delhi.

LTTE banned the sale of "Thina Murasu" in Paris

The sale of "Thina Murasu," a most popular Tamil weekly paper has been banned in Paris by Parithi, the head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in France. LTTE continues with its barbaric act of throttling the freedom of expression and human rights, not only in North and East of Sri Lanka, but also in France, a country that championed the cause of human values and human rights, by choosing to impose ban on the sale of "Thina Murasu," - on the World Human Right day. The Tamil Language weekly "Thina Murasu" is a tabloid size political weekly printed and published in Colombo, Sri Lanka by Eelam Peoples Democratic Party led by Douglas Devananda.

Bangladesh president summons army, plunges country into a new crisis

By M Rama Rao - in Delhi

Bangladesh President Iajuddin Ahmed Sunday plunged the country into a constitutional and political crisis. True to his maverick style, he ignored the counsel of his advisors who have worked out a 'package' to end the stand off with the Awami League led 14 party alliance but also deployed army across the country to maintain law and order. Combat troops in war like fashion are seen stationed at key centres according to reports from Dhaka. Any rapprochement with Awami League led alliance now appears nearly impossible. The opposition will gun for the President.

Tigers grab Tamil TV and radio stations in France

By our Correspondents in Europe

The Tamil Tiger leadership in France is presently taking frantic moves to shift the Tamil Television Network (TTN), the TV station out of Paris to Geneva in Switzerland. It is learnt that the Sri Lanka’s separatist Tamil rebel outfit has got cold feet after French authorities moved to examine closely the activities of the banned Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and their other businesses. The new location is expected to be the Swedish Tamil Forum office in Geneva, Switzerland, another proxy organization of LTTE.

PC House becomes a Microsoft OEM partner

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

Appointment of the PC House as a Microsoft Original Equipment Manufacturer Partner (OEM) by the world’s leading IT giant Microsoft, is an endorsement of the commitment and dedication to providing customers a total solution in this mission critical industry by the PC House, said SH M Rishan, Managing director, PC House at the occasion of signing of the agreement in this regard at the Colombo Hotel Hilton, last week. MC OEM Partner status represents the highest level of competence and expertise with Microsoft technologies.

On America’s opposition to Sri Lanka invoking Prevention of Terrorism Act

By Asoka Weerasinghe

The Americans are being just Americans when they show their opposition to Sri Lanka’s Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA). This is solely to prevent human rights abuse of Tamil minority, they say. This is a pure bully boy tactic on a vulnerable little island which is coping with the assault on its sovereignty by a gang of terrorists - the Tamil Tigers, initially trained by Indira Gandhi’s India, and now banned by the United States and 30 other countries including Canada. So what is their problem? I suppose October 16, 1970 is too far gone and fuzzy for the Americans to recall their neighbor to the north, Canada, invoking the War Measures Act, suspending the civil liberties of all Canadians to deal with what was known as the FLQ (Front de liberation du Quebec) crisis. The FLQ was seeking a separate French Quebec, like the Tamil Tigers seeking a racist Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka.

Identity, Conflict and National Reconciliation in Burma

By Nehginpao Kipgen

In sociology and political science, the notion of social identity is individuals' identifying themselves as members of a particular group - such as nation, social class, subculture, ethnicity, and so forth. It is in this context that sociologists and historians speak of a national identity of a particular country. The Union of Burma is comprised of more than 100 different ethnic groups and sub-groups, making her one of the most ethnically diverse countries in Southeast Asia. According to the State Peace and Development Council, Burma’s military government, ministry of foreign affairs website, there are 135 "ethnic races" in Burma.

John Keells Office Automation reaffirms connections with Toshiba Singapore

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

Chandima Perera, CEO John Keells Office Automation (JKOA) said that the close collaboration of JKOA – a subsidiary of John Keells Holdings, with a technological global giant – Computer Systems Division (CSD) of Toshiba Singapore for the last 14 years enabled JKOA to avail the Sri Lankan market with most technologically advanced, innovative computer related products at affordable prices. He was speaking at the press briefing to announce the introduction of a new service "Talk-2-Toshiba" held the Colombo Hotel Cinnamon Grand. "Talk-2-Toshiba" is a unique after sales service arrangement which is a toll-free call-back available world-wide for users to quickly link up for warranty and technical support services. The service is available 24 hours, 365 days a year, contact through internet to discharge repair work expeditiously.

Pinochet, Chile’s former US-backed dictator, dead at 91

News of the death of Chile’s former military dictator Augusto Pinochet sparked spontaneous demonstrations in Santiago and other Chilean cities Sunday. Thousands poured into the streets or drove in horn-honking caravans to celebrate the death of the 91-year-old retired army general, who came to power in a 1973 CIA-backed coup against the elected government of Socialist Party President Salvador Allende.


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