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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2787

Monthly archive

Evidence surfaces that Indonesian military executed "Balibo Five" Australian newsmen in 1975

The Howard government is trying to block the release of vital intelligence reports showing that the Indonesian military regime ordered the execution of five Australian-based newsmen in the lead up to the 1975 invasion of East Timor. Federal Attorney-General Philip Ruddock said on December 10 that the classified material was unlikely to be made available to a belated coronial inquiry into the killings at Balibo, East Timor, on October 16, 1975. The Defence Department and its electronic surveillance agency, the Defence Signals Directorate (DSD), are refusing to hand over the documents to the inquest, claiming "public interest immunity."

President Bush Signs Indo-US Civil Nuclear Agreement

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent Asian Tribune

Despite India a non signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and criticism from certain quarters that it gives a bad signal to nuclear hopefuls like Iran and North Korea, on the strength of the congressional ratification of the treaty last month, President Bush took a major step toward building a new strategic partnership with the world’s largest democracy by signing a new law expanding U.S. civil nuclear cooperation with India. The agreement reverses U.S. policy to restrict nuclear cooperation with India because of its refusal to sign the NPT and its testing of nuclear weapons in 1974 and 1998.

Radhika Coomaraswamy clarifies on sending Ambassador Allan Rock to Sri Lanka for investigation

Radhika Coomaraswamy, the UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, has replied denying the statement made by World Alliance of Peace in Sri Lanka, SPUR and Sri Lankans Expatriates Organization in America. The statements of these organizations were published in the "Asain Tribune" of 18 December. In her denial she says that she did not go to Sri Lanka for investigation, because of the conflict of interests as she is a Sri Lankan national. She added that she sent Ambassador Allan Rock with the approval of Kofi Annan UN Secretary General and by the Sri Lanka’s President himself.

Anton Balasingham body to be viewed in a 40,000 Sterling Pounds hall

LTTE has hired Alexandra Palace hall for 40,000 sterling pounds for the public to view the body demised Anton Balasingham tomorrow from 8.30 AM to 3.30 PM - London time, for just 7 hours. (1 Sterling Pound = Sri Lanka Rs. 209.689). Alexandra Palace hall is coming under the jurisdiction of the Harringey London Borough Council and it is learnt according to the LTTE funeral directors, if in case Balasingham body is cremated, his ashes are to be sprinkled in the Alexandra Palace Garden. LTTE sources revealed, as of yesterday, they have not decided on a final resting place of Late Balasingham as burial spaces in London are not available.

A Realist Critique Of The Lankan Crisis

By Dayan Jayatilleka

What the political, policy and intellectual responses to the Sri Lankan crisis lack is a Realist reading. A Realist reading would be distinct from those of idealists of liberal-left persuasion and ideologues of narrowly nationalist inclination. A realist would advocate devolution not so much because of its intrinsic desirability and merits, but as a strategic imperative. This would be completely distinct from those who see devolution or autonomy as something to be offered (except as a diplomatic ploy) to the LTTE; a product whose consumer would be Prabhakaran. That is a mistaken notion shared by both idealists and ideologues.

Delightful experience at Coca-Cola Fun Island

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

Those lucky winners who participated in the Coca-Cola Fun Island promotion were treated to unforgettable experience when they were offered a trip to Meedhupparu Island Resort recently. The lucky winners were further treated to a night at the Browns Beach Hotel, Negombo. After spending the night at Browns Beach, they were given all the travel documents and on arrival at the airport the following morning; two special counters were opened for the one-hundred winners to clear the travel documents. When the arrived at Male airport all the winners were treated to their first Maldivian experience, which was a speed boat ride through the various atolls to this year’s Fun Island – Meedhupparu Island Resort.

A Counterproductive U.S. Advice to Palestinians

By Nicola Nasser

Regardless of good will or bad faith, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ decision to go without national consensus to early presidential and parliamentary elections was divisive, counterproductive and conforms to U.S.-Israeli plans to remove the Islamic Resistance Movement "Hamas" from power or pressure it into accepting what its rival Fatah had accepted: A peace process on their dictated terms and conditions. "I have decided to call for early presidential and parliamentary elections," Abbas said in a televised 90-minute speech on Saturday, in an effort to break a political nine-month deadlocked dialogue mainly bilateral between Fatah, the former ruling movement, and the incumbent Hamas. "Let’s return to the people to have their say, and let them be the judge."

Sri Lanka plans to build yachts and recreational boats

Sunil C. Perera - Reporting from Colombo

Goverment of Sri Lanka and the Regional Resources Development Authority [RRDA] of the North Western Provincial Council will train local boat builders to build new boat varieties assistance with the Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit – GTZ At present local boat manufacturers make a number of fishing boats, but they do not have ways to build other boat varieties, like non-fishing boats, owerboats, pontoon boats, jet boats, wave runners, sailboats, motor yacht vehicles and luxury boats , said Managing Director of the RRDA, Mr.Pradeep Aruna Dissanayaka.

Huawei on High Speed

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

Huawei introduces High Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) data cards (E620) that reaches speeds up to 1.8Mbps, compatible with 3G, EDGE, and GSM networks. It has the possibility of dialing or receiving a voice call through the Laptop and users could SMS through the Notebook computer using the Data card. HSDPA has been changing the telecommunication world by opening the door for high speed downloading up to 1.8 Mbps in comparison to 3G which produces data transfers up to 384Kbps.

Fiji keeps date with coup again

By Tukoji R Pandit - Syndicate Features

This is one coup that did not come as a surprise. The military strongman in Fiji, Cdr Frank Bainimarama, had been at odds with the prime minister, Laisenia Qarase for a long time. He had been pressing the prime minister to drop altogether the idea of offering amnesty to the participants of the 2000 coup and was constantly asking him not to bring in legislation designed to favour the indigenous Fijians in land and sea rights over the minority ethnic Indians. The prime minister did not listen even as the military leader dropped some very clear hints that he would take over the control of the country if Qarase remained adamant.

Estate Unions and the Employers’ Federation signed a new cooperative agreement

Sunil C. Perera - Reporting from Colombo

Estate Unions and the Employers’ Federation signed a new cooperative agreement in Colombo, on Tuesday, pertaining to salaries of estate workers, despite a half a million Sri Lankan plantation workers have entered the third week of their strike for higher pay. President Mahinda Rajapakse presided while Chairman of the Employers’ Federation Gotabhaya Dasanayake and its member Lalith Obeysekara signed the deal.