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

Monthly archive


NGOs selling the nation and their souls to foreigners

H. L. D. Mahindapala

In an incredible twist of events, leading members of the Sri Lankan civil society went all out to suppress the publication of Dr. Susantha Goonatilake's book "Recolonisation, Foreign Funded NGOs in Sri Lanka," without even sighting or reading the contents. They jointly petitioned SAGE, India's outstanding publishers of academic titles, shortly after they read a pre-publication advertisement in SAGE's catalogue. That brief ad was enough for the members of "the civil society"(they are inseparable from NGOs) who are supposed to be the champions of freedom, liberty, democracy, to launch a concerted campaign to suppress Dr. Goonatilake's book.

Radhika Coomaraswamy & Allan Rock urges Security Council Working Group to recommend targeted sanctions against LTTE

Radhika Coomaraswamy the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict and her Special Adviser on Sri Lanka Ambassador Allan Rock appealed to the UN Security Council Working Group to impose targeted sanctions against LTTE. Ambassador Rock also highlighted that going by UNICEF estimates, since 2001, the LTTE appeared to have recruited over 18,000 children as combatants. He also expressed regret that the commitment made to him by the LTTE leadership to cease child recruitment by 1st January, 2007 had not been honored. Sri Lanka’s Ambassador Prasad Kariywasam joined in the appeal and urged the UN Working Group to recommend to the Security Council, the adoption of targeted measures against the LTTE.

The Second Front

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

It is a declaration of war. Ministers Anura Bandaranaike, Mangala Samaraweera and Sripathy Sooriarachchi were beginning to function as a group of dissidents within the government and Mr Rajapakse has responded with a pre-emptive strike of disproportionate force. The dismissed ministers will probably limit themselves to verbal barrages against the President (and his coterie) for now, reserving their counterattack for a more favourable time. The dismissals will not destroy dissent in the SLFP; the dissidents will go underground, waiting for better times to surface.

Canada to welcome 2,000 more Karen refugees

Canada’s Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Diane Finley announced that Canada will welcome an additional 2,000 Karen refugees from Burma (also known as Myanmar) over the next two years. Diane Finley told on 09 February , “Canada’s New Government is pleased to open our doors to an additional 2,000 Karen refugees, who have been living under terrible conditions for many years.”

Time for Shalit Deal

By Mohammed Mar'i

The Palestinian prisoners hope that a prisoner's exchange deal with abducted Israel soldier Gilad Shalit will be realized after the formation of a Palestinian national unity government on the basis of Mecca Agreement. Fathi Hammad, A Hamas member in the Palestinian Legislative council, said that "a prisoner exchange deal is closer than ever, and we can say that our prisoners will be released (from Israeli jails) soon".

Countdown begins for Indian railway budget amidst high expectations

By M Rama Rao - Reporting for Asian Tribune

'Management Guru' Lalu Prasad Yadav will be presenting his new railway budget later this month with emphasis on revenue generation. He will once again play to the galleries and spare the low and middle income groups but target the upper end- the AC travellers, who are also lured by the budget carriers. Most AC travellers are either government employees or business people. For them the hike in the fare means little. In fact, given the reliability of the train travel, the AC class passengers will be ready to pay the extra rupee. They have been chastened by their experience with low cost airlines which have taken the air travellers to the bullock cart age.

Under the Sahadow of Lakegala : Their festivals and entertainments

By Sudath Gunasekara

This village celebrates two main annual festivals, the Sinhala New Year and the Vesak. New year is a cultural celebration and the Vesak is a religious festivity.The Sinhala New Year is held in the month of April as it is done in all other parts of the Island. They follow the same auspicious times as given in the almanac but there are slight local variations in customs and practices. During the month of April the entire environment takes a festive mood. There is greenery all around and the trees and creepers are full of flowers as if they are also getting ready for the season of national festivities. The Eramudu tree with its flamboyant bunches of vibrant red flowers takes a special place during this season.

Momentum continues in the Stock Market

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

In their weekly review the HNB Stockbrokers indicated that the positive momentum which started off last week continued through this week, even amid trading being shortened due to a special CSE holiday which fell on Monday. Activity improved in the market on healthy volumes this week, as both indices gained for the week. The All Share Price Index (ASPI)) rose by a noteworthy 26.1 points to close the week at 2973.6 points, though in percentage terms the growth was modest amounting to a mere 0.89 percent. A similar 23.9 point increase was witnessed in the Milanka Price Index (MPI) this week with the index closing at 4121.2 points.

Christianity in India today

By Eduardo Faleiro - Syndicate Features

During my last term in Parliament (1999-2005), I travelled extensively throughout the country to understand Christianity in India today. I met our Cardinals, Bishops and theologians and visited several of our religious organisations including Jesuit organisations such as the Vidya Jyoti Theological Seminary in New Delhi, the Sameeksha Ashram in Kalady, Kerala and the Xavier Centre of Historical Research in Goa. The theme at these meetings was usually the need for inter religious harmony and dialogue in India and the need for greater inculturation.

Scientists conclude global warming is "unequivocal"

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released the “Summary for Policy Makers” from its fourth assessment report on science of global warming and climate change February 2. The new report concludes that global warming is “unequivocal” and strengthens the previous assessment that most warming in the last 50 years is due to human activity. The IPCC report predicts a greater frequency of heat waves, more intense tropical cyclones (typhoons and hurricanes), the possible disappearance of summer Arctic sea ice, increasing acidification of the ocean, and changing patterns of precipitation that will cause an increasing number of draughts for some portions of the world. Depending on the scenario, global temperatures will rise between 1.8 and 4 degrees Celsius and sea levels will rise between 18 and 59 centimeters before the next century.

UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayaka forewarns of an impending crisis in the government leading to its collapse

By Walter Jayawardhana

Partly infuriated by the exit of 18 parliamentarians from his party and partly elated by the fact that the entry of the those parliamentarians in to the government has caused the events of things that led to the sacking of three Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) ministers the General Secretary of the United National Party (UNP) Tissa Attanayaka said the government has been hoisted by its own petard. He said today the government has been injured by its own trick intended for the UNP and predicted that the crisis started by the sacking of the ministers would spread and finally lead to the collapse of this government.