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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2783

Monthly archive

Striking Workers1

Half a million Sri Lankan plantation workers continue strike for higher pay

A strike by half a million Sri Lankan tea and rubber plantation employees for higher pay has entered its second week. The workers have demonstrated their determination to continue the stoppage indefinitely but the trade unions, the government and employers are desperate to find a means to shut down the campaign, which threatens to trigger similar demands by other sections of the working class. The strike began on December 5 for an increase in the daily wage to 300 rupees, or less than $US3

LTTE warned a shop keeper of dire consequences, for selling "Thina Murasu" despite the ban

A Tamil shopkeeper in La Chapelle, 7510 Paris has been threatened and severely reprimanded by Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam for openly selling "Thina Murasu," the Tamil weekly edited, printed and published in Colombo, Sri Lanka by Eelam Peoples Democratic party led by Minsiter Douglas Devananda. According to a report received by "Asian Tribune," a Tamil grocery shop, which sells groceries, as well as newspapers and magazine called "Asian Traders" located at Rue-du Fabourg, in La Chapelle was found fault by the LTTE leadership in Paris for selling "Thina Murasu" in his shop against the ban order of 10 December, imposed by the LTTE in France. Earlier, the sale of "Thina Murasu," has been banned in France by Parithi, the Head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in France.

Sri Lanka: A new concept driving license to be issued from 2007

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

A novel driving license in the form of a smartcard is to be introduced in Sri Lanka by the Department of Motor Traffic and the project estimated to cost around US $ 30 million, spread over a period of seven years with private sector collaboration. The new licenses would be issued next year. The Department of Motor Traffic will also implement a user-friendly driving license management system to streamline the process of personalization, production and issuing of the new smart driving licenses based on a build, operate and transfer basis for the convenience of Sri Lankan motorists.

UNHCR steps up support to fishermen in the north and east affected by the upsurge of violence

With the view to provide alternate method of livelihood to the unemployed fisher-folks in the North and Eastern provinces the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has come with several ‘cash for work’ schemes. The UNHCR has stepped in to support a number of projects to assist fishermen in the North and East to undertake normal livelihood activities. To begin with the Refugee Agency has come with ‘cash for work projects’ in the Trincomalee district to fishermen who are affected by the recent upsurge in violence. The Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources estimates that over 9,000 fisher families in the North and East are unable to engage in livelihood activities. 1,308 of these families are in the Trincomalee district, the Eastern Province of the country.

Awami League, allies may boycott Bangladesh elections

By M Rama Rao in New Delhi

Major parties barring the BNP in Bangaldesh may boycott the elections slated for January 23. Though the Awami League has not yet firmed up its position, the thrust of discussions at its presidium meetings is in favour of poll boycott. Only a very insignificant minority in Awami League is advocating participation in the elections. The Awami League and its 14-party alliance are also firming up an all out campaign to force President Prof Iajuddin Ahmed to step down as caretaker government' head.

INGOs and INGOs plan to support Batticaloa tsunami livelihood development projects

Sunil C. Perera- Reporting from Batticaloa, Sri Lanka

Local NGOs and INGOs have pledged to initiate a number of livelihood development projects in the tsunami affected areas at the Batticaloa district. According to the Reconstruction and Development Agency [RADA] sources, all projects would need over five hundred million rupees for implementation.The Government of Sri Lanka launched its Batticoalo Divisional Livelihood Development Plan [DLDP] on last Tuesday to uplift living conditions of the tsunami-affected community and bring back them into their normal life.

Emma Nicholson and EU Kashmir report

Dr Shabir Choudhry

Baroness Emma Nicholson is under fire. A few weeks back not many Pakistanis and Kashmiris were even aware of her name; and now she is the talking point in all Pakistani and Kashmiri political circles around the world. One wonders what she has done to deserve this treatment. As a Member of European Parliament, the EU rapporteur and vice chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, she has presented a draft report on Kashmir and has requested the EU to endorse it. This report has obviously annoyed the government of Pakistan.

Novel furniture retailing at Don Carolis

By Quintus Perera - Asian Tribune

H Don Carolis & Sons from its inception since the year 1860 as a manufacturer of exquisitely hand crafted, solid wood furniture, under the guidance of Don Carolis Hwavitarana have achieved many accolades locally and internationally With this solid experience and expertise of 150 years service to the nation Don Carolis - the pioneers in the furniture industry in Sri Lanka, through ‘Store of Inspired Living’ introduced a novel concept in the furniture retailing, which allows 35,000 sq ft to accommodate 20,000 furniture items to be displayed, at 190 Vauxhall Street.

Japanese prime minister faces sharp fall in opinion polls

After just three months in power, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is confronting a sharp drop in his approval ratings. Questions are already being raised in ruling circles about Abe’s ability to push ahead with the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s (LDP) agenda of militarism and free-market economic reforms. A poll in the Asahi Shimbun showed Abe suffered a 10 percent fall in support during November. The downward trend was particularly sharp among people in their 20s—dropping from 53 percent in early November to 42 percent.

Musharraf’s Kashmir ‘Concessions’

By Allabaksh - Syndicate Features

Pakistan president, Gen Pervez Musharraf, likes to conduct dialogue with India on an issue as vexatious as Kashmir through the media. He has never felt the need to talk to anyone in his own country before making his periodic announcements of what one of the Jihadists said ‘unilateral concessions’ to India.

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Striking Workers 2

LTTE, with an ISI mark

As the proverb goes, your enemy's enemy is your friend. Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Sri Lanka's Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), both of which don't see India as a friend, have now reportedly joined hands to target the coastal zone in Gujarat. This bourgeoning co-operation among forces inimical to Indian interests is not a new development. The Nepali Maoists are reported to have had links with Indian Maoist extremists, and following the disarming of the former, there are fears that the weapons may find their way to the latter.