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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2644

Monthly archive

Salwa Judum activists

Dialog 3G Introduces IDD Video Calls

Sunil C. Perera in Colombo

Dialog 3G, the first commercial third generation service in the South Asian region, which was launched by Dialog Telekom in 2006, is revolutionizing the mobile telephony landscape in Sri Lanka with yet another ground breaking Dialog 3G service - IDD Video Calling. The service enables Dialog 3G subscribers to call family, friends or business associates in 25 countries for rates starting at just Rs.35/- per minute. Dialog 3G Roamers can also access the service when travelling to countries on the list, which includes the USA, Canada, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and the United Kingdom and enjoy speaking ‘face-to-face’ via their handsets.

Indo-Bangladesh Relations and Coup in August 1975 –Part-V

By Rabindranath Trivedi - for Asian Tribune from Dhaka

Chiao Kuan-Hua, chairman of the delegation of the People’s Republic of China, made a speech at the Plenary meeting of the 28th session of the UN General Assembly on October 2, 1973. Mr. Chiao Kuan-Hua mentioned in his speech Para 6 'The Question on Bangladesh' : In the 26th session of the General Assembly in 1971, the Soviet Union supported India in dismembering Pakistan by armed force. The General Assembly, and then the Security Council, adopted resolutions by overwhelming majorities calling for cease-fire, troop withdrawal and repatriation of prisoners of war by India and Pakistan. At its 27th Session in 1972, the General Assembly further adopted two interdependent resolutions calling for the repatriation of Pakistan prisoners of war and expressing the desire for the admission of Bangladesh to the United Nations. It was not until August 28, 1973 that an agreement on the repatriation of prisoners of war and civilians was reached between India and Pakistan.

Lanka's independent think-tank CPA admitted to membership of IACL

By Joseph Thavaraja

An independent think tank in Colombo, the Centre for Policy Alternatives, has been confirmed as a member of the International Association for Constitutional Law (IACL) today. The IACL took the decision to confirm CPA at its recent Executive Committee meeting and World Congress held in Athens, Greece, reports said. IACL was established over twenty-five years ago, and is a worldwide association of constitutional scholars, national chapters and national organizations with a proven record in promoting constitutionalism and the rule of law.

India: Chhattisgarh Government asks Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) to stop providing health services to indigenous people

By Subash Mohapatra

Salwa Judum activistsThe Chhattisgarh Government asked Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) to stop its humanitarian and medical aid in the conflict hit rural villages of Chhattisgarh, a central tribal state of India. There are allegations that MSF is providing health services to Maoists rebels. MSF (Doctors without borders) is an international, medical, humanitarian aid movement. The organization provides urgently needed medical assistance without discrimination. By stopping the MSF to work in the remote villages affected by the Maoist insurgency, the government denies the right to life to thousands of indigenous people. The government itself is not present in these villages and is not providing any medical health services.

India's Left opposes the civilian nuke deal with the US

By M Rama Rao - Reporting from India for Asian Tribune

The Four Left parties have rejected the Indo-US civil nuclear agreement, known as the 123 agreement, and asked the government not to operationalise it. They also decided to paint the Coramandal coast from Kolkata to Chennai into red by taking out two 'Long Marches' to Vizag from these metros to oppose the India-America joint naval exercises in the Bay of Bengal off Vizag next month. "We (Left parties) don't want the government to further proceed with operationalise this agreement ( on nuclear cooperation with the US)", Prakash Karat, the CPI (M) general secretary told reporters here after a meeting of senior leaders of Left parties at the A K Gopalan, the Marxist headquarters.

Shady Tiger Gnanakone behind Ranil’s move to topple government

H. L. D. Mahindapala

Melbourne-based Charles Gnanakone, the old school-mate and friend of Ranil Wickremesinghe, has offered $1 million (Rs. 110 million) to win back the UNP dissidents who crossed over to join the Mahinda Rajapakse government, according Karu Jayasuriya, the leader of the UNP dissident group. UNP parliamentarians were highly agitated yesterday when Jayasuriya, who is the Minister for Public Administration, raised this as a privilege issue in Parliament. Jayasuriya told Parliament that Gnanakone had sent messages offering S1 million each to the dissident UNP MPs who crossed over.

Peace Secretariat questions objectivity of Human Rights Watch

Pointing out contradictions, selective targeting and the less than objective criticisms in the latest Human Rights Watch report on Sri Lanka Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha, Secretary General, Secretariat for Co-ordinating the Peace Process, has asked Brad Adams, the Asia Division Director, of HRW, why he should continue to work together with HRW to improve the Human Rights situation in Sri Lanka. He adds: “I can and should work together with organizations that are concerned with human beings, but not with those who have an agenda of their own which eschews objectivity.”

ADB recipe to check growth disparities

From M. Rama Rao - Reporting for Asian Tribune from New Delhi.

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has come up with its own recipe for checking disparities, which, it says, in its flagship annual statistical publication, ‘Key Indicators, 2077,' are ‘widening’ and can ‘threaten’ the very growth process in India and other Asian countries. The flipside of ‘growth story’, the Manila based regional lender says, is ‘unevenness in growth in incomes’ across urban and rural areas. That is not something unexpected during growth process, according to it.

Ranil’s call for foreign intervention

By S. Akurugoda

The opposition leader Ranil Wickramasinghe’s call for foreign intervention at his most recent meeting with the so-called Civil Monitoring Commission amidst former Australian Foreign Minister Gareth Evans's declaration that any attack on the LTTE-held areas in the Wanni can be a "potential case for international intervention”, is more than a coincident. The United National Party is fast moving towards its pre 1956 era, reminding us the UNP under the leadership of Sir John Kotalawala. Sir John insulted the Buddhist monks, suggesting that their (Monk’s) buttock should be painted with “thara’ (tar).

CCC formalizes Sri Lanka Japan Business Committee

By Quintus Perera - Asian Tribune

Ceylon Chamber of Commerce formalized the functions of the Sri Lanka Japan Business Cooperation Committee (SLJBCC) adopting a set of rules in their process to strengthen the links with its affiliated Business Councils. The first bilateral business Council - SLJBCC was set up in 1979 by the CCC following a MOU with SLJBCC set up by the Japan Chamber of Commerce & Industry (JCCI). Since then, 14 joint meetings have been held in Sri Lanka and Japan, the most recent in Tokyo, Japan in 2006. The next meeting is scheduled for 2008 in Sri Lanka.

Hut of a relief camp

Project model

Inspection of the Power Plant Project site 1

Inspection of the Power Plant Project site 2

Inspection of the Power Plant Project site 3

Inspection of the Power Plant Project site4

Red Cross confirms Bush administration, CIA used torture in interrogations

A confidential report by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) suggests that Bush administration officials may have committed war crimes in the operation of CIA “secret prisons” overseas, according to a lengthy analysis published on the web site of the New Yorker magazine Sunday. The Red Cross report concluded that the methods used in the CIA interrogation of alleged 9/11 terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and other Al Qaeda prisoners were “tantamount to torture” and that Bush administration officials had likely committed “grave breaches” of the Geneva Conventions.

Towards a culture of peace

By Eduardo Faleiro - Syndicate Features

The last three decades have witnessed unprecedented conflict within and among nations, and religion has often been misused and invoked to justify sectarian strife. The United Nations which was created “to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war” sees inter-faith dialogue and cooperation as an important step towards global harmony. The U.N. General Assembly adopted last year a resolution on “Promotion of Inter-religious and Inter-cultural Understanding and Cooperation for Peace”. The resolution emphasizes the importance of promoting understanding, tolerance and friendship among people in all their diversity of religion and belief and calls upon the Secretary General to bring the promotion of interfaith dialogue to the attention of all Governments.

Sri Lanka President Rajapaksa anounced, Government would not delay development due to obstacles

By Walter Jayawardhana

Project modelPresident Mahinda Rajapaksa held a reception for the engineers and bankers of the People’s Republic of China who are investing in 455 million US Dollars to build the island nations first coal fired power plant at Norochcholai in the North West District of Puttalam. “I really appreciate the hard work put in by the Chinese engineers and other workers so far and hope they would be able to finish it even before schedule,” said President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Temple Trees reception, where he hosted the Chinese team for a dinner.