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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 81

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Sri Lanka Police Special Task Force overrun Tamil Tiger child soldier training base in Amparai in the East

By Walter Jayawardhana

The elite commando unit of the Sri Lanka Police, the Special Task Force, (STF) in its twenty-first victory inside the dense jungles of Kanjikudichcha Aru successfully overran a training base of Child soldiers after some resistance from the rebels of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), on Thursday February 1. Military spokesman said the abominable camp, named ‘Jeevananda Base’ was a military garrison, where the LTTE kidnapped and hid hundreds of Eastern Province teenagers secretly, giving them a crash military course before sending them to battle fields.

Tamil Tigers kill social worker distributing food to Jaffna people

S. T. Gananathan, 64, President of the Jaffna Multi Pupose Co-Operative Society (MPCS) in Ariyalai, a suburb of Jaffna, was shot dead early monring on Thursday (February 1, 2007) near Mampalam junction by "two unidentified armed men", said TamilNet, the pro-Tiger website using the usual phrase to cover-up the killings of the Tamil Tigers. Sri Lanka's Ministry of Defence reported that Gananathan had been very active in distributing the food supplied to Jaffna by the Government. The Tamil Tigers have been very active in sabotaging the supply of food, including attacking ships that carry food to the people of Jaffna. The Tiger objective has been to exploit the shortages to blame the Sri Lankan government and win international sympathy. Tamils participating in the distribution of food are seen as collaborators with the government

Australian Parliamentarians to visit Sri Lanka

By Sumane Liyanaarachchi - Sydney Australia

Australian Parliamentarians Don Randal and Senator Steve Hutchins are due to to visit Sri Lanka on a fact finding mission. They have been invited by the High Commissioner K.Balapatabandi. Don Randall a Liberal MP is the Chair of the Australia - Sri Lanka Friendship Group in the Federal Parliament . Steve Hutchins, a Labor Senator is the Deputy Chair of the same group.

Israel Killed Three Palestinians in the West Bank: The non-violent resistance of Martin Luther King in Hebron

By Mohammed Mar'i*

Amid a tense ceasefire between the Palestinian rivals Fatah and Hamas and an accusation to the US of promoting civil war among the Palestinians by transferring $86 million to strengthen security forces loyal to Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) killed three Palestinians in the West Bank on Thursday. The IOF troops killed Taha Mohammed, from the old city in Jerusalem, who tried to infiltrate into Israel through the Separation Wall near the Kalandiya refugee camp, north of Jerusalem, on Thursday morning.

Historic MIcrosoft Windows 2007 to be launched in Sri Lanka

By Quintus Perera - Asian Tribune

Sri Lanka will usher in Windows Vista, Microsoft 2007 Office System and Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 at BMICH in Colombo on the 15th February 2007 .This would be seen as the Software Industry’s biggest launch in recent history. The industry experts’ would be seen ushering in Microsoft’s latest version of its flagship operating system, opening windows to hitherto untapped vistas of opportunity and productivity, ease of use, security, stability and connectedness.

Britain braced for Iraqi-style killings as police hunt Jihadists

Neville de Silva - Diplomatic Editor Asian Tribune

Will Iraqi-style kidnappings and on-line beheading of victims next invade British homes as locally- grown terrorists plan new attacks? Will Baghdad come to London as it came to Birmingham, is what is worrying the security services as they warn of Britain's vulnerability to al-Qaeda attacks. This is the troubling question now being asked here after the combined forces- MI5, Scotland Yard and local police- arrested 09 suspected terrorists in dawn raids and later in Birmingham on Wednesday for allegedly plotting to kidnap and behead a Muslim member of the British armed forces.

First Non – MP sworn in as Cabinet Minister: Ministerial score-card - Cabinet Ministers 53; Non Cabinet 34 & Deputies 20

Patali Champika Ranawaka, the lay member of the National Heritage Party – Jathika Hela Urumiya is the 53rd member of the Sri Lanka Cabinet of Ministers. He was sworn in as the Minister of Environment & Natural Resources yesterday morning at the Temple Trees, the official residence of the President of Sri Lanka. It is learnt that for the first time, in recent years in Sri Lanka, Patali Champika Ranawaka will be first non-MP to be sworn in as a Minister. He is expected to replace in the Parliament, JHU National List parliamentarian monk Ven. Omalpe Sobhita Thero, who resigned recently his parliamentary membership and submitted his resignation.

Desperate maneuvers give Sri Lankan government a thin majority

Two dozen opposition MPs joined the Sri Lankan government of President Mahinda Rajapakse last weekend. Superficially, the move has strengthened the government’s hand giving it a bare parliamentary majority for the first time. In reality, the unwieldy coalition and huge cabinet are signs of deep political crisis as Rajapakse escalates the unpopular civil war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The “cross-overs”—18 from the United National Party (UNP) and 6 from the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC)—followed weeks of behind-the-scenes haggling. All 18 of the UNP members have been given a post in the government—10 as cabinet ministers and the remainder as non-cabinet and deputy ministers. SLMC leader Rauf Hakim was given a cabinet post and other SLMC members were appointed as deputy ministers.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Proposes Fee Hikes

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent Asian Tribune

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is proposing the first major adjustment in its fee structure since 1998, which could mean higher costs as early as mid-2007 for those who apply for green cards, adjust their residency status or want to bring their relatives to the United States, says U.S. Department of State in a press release. The proposal does not by itself raise fees but rather is part of a regulatory process that requires a U.S. government agency to explain what it proposes to do and why, and then to allow the public to comment, it adds.