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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2619

Monthly archive

Hindu American Foundation Expresses Shock and Dismay at Attack on Trinidad Hindu Temple

On August 5, 2007, the landmark Siewdass Sadhu Shiva Mandir, also known as the Temple-in-the-Sea for its dramatic location just off the coast of the island nation of Trinidad and Tobago, was the site of a break-in, vandalism and attempted arson. Out of Trinidad & Tobago's total population of 1.3 million, some 25 percent are Hindus, and there are over 300 Hindu temples scattered across the country. The Temple-By-The Sea is also called Sewdass Sadhu temple. The Hindu American Foundation (HAF), that highlighted growing religious tensions in the country in its third annual Hindu human rights report released last month, strongly condemned this latest incident in a press release issued on August 9.

Human Rights Watch has published a complete fabrication of a shouting incident says Sri Lanka

By Walter Jayawardhana

Information Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said that an incident reported in the New York based Human Rights Watch about a purported shouting incident by the country’s President at a newspaper editor is a complete fabrication. “I was present at this meeting and no such incident has ever taken place and this is a complete fabrication,” said the minister whose statement was carried by a national television channels. Minister Yapa said in chapter 8 entitled ‘Freedom of Expression and Association’ of the Human Rights Watch it is said that Mr. N. Vithyadaran of the newspaper Sudar Oli was shouted at by the country’s President Mahinda Rajapaksa at a breakfast meeting in August last year.

Sri Lanka Government to disarm para-military group operating in the east

Mahinda Rajapakse with Johon HolmesSri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapakse disclosed the Government’s intention of disarming the para-military group operating in the Eastern Sri Lanka as it could significantly improve the protection of returning internally displaced persons and other conflict-affected communities. John Holmes, the UN undersecretary general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator welcomed the assurance by the President about the planned disarmament of paramilitary groups operating in eastern Sri Lanka. This was a positive response by Sri Lanka President to the United Nations which on Thursday urged Sri Lanka to disarm a pro-government paramilitary group operating in the east of the island to ensure safety and security for aid workers and residents.

Pope tricked into believing Tiger propaganda on bombing of Tamil Church

By Glen Jenvey

In the offensive to recapture Jaffna the Sri Lankan Air Force (SLAF) dropped leaflets urging the people to move to places of worship for safety. By July 9, 1995 St. Peter’s Church and the adjacent St. Peter’s School in Navaly were packed with hundred of civilians seeking shelter. On the day after the attack, 56 bodies were retrieved from the debris, many of whom were women and children. The death toll in this incident later increased. Rescue workers reported torn limbs and pieces of human flesh strewn over the area. Predictably, the SLAF was accused of attacking places of worship where Tamil civilians had sought refuge. How did the SLAF make this mistake?

Have resplendent scenic beauty of Sri Lanka a preferred location for future film projects - P. M. Amza

Sri Lanka Film FestivalHave the resplendent scenic beauty of Sri Lanka as a preferred location for the future film projects. The Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai appealed to the South Indian film makers and said that many Tamil movies have been filmed on locations in Sri Lanka. The Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai in association with the International Cine Appreciation Forum and the National film Cooperation of Sri Lankae organized a Sri Lankan Film Festival at the South Indian Film Chamber Theatre in Chennai.

Holmes urges Sri Lanka to disarm the Karuna group in the eastern province for protection of civilians

By Walter Jayawardhana

The United Nations under Secretary General for humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes urged Sri Lanka to disarm the Karuna Group after a tour in the Eastern Province in Sri Lanka. He said it was important to demilitarize the Eastern Province as soon as possible. "It is important that the disarmament of the Karuna faction should happen as soon as possible," he told reporters at a Colombo press conference . There have been serious allegations of recruiting child soldiers both against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and the breakaway Karuna faction in the Eastern Province.

Joint Coastal Zone Waste Management Project Opened in Hikkaduwa

Sunil C. Perera in Colombo

The Minister of Water Supply and Drainage, Al – Haj A. L. M. Athaulla, and Australian High Commissioner Dr Greg French jointly commissioned a wastewater treatment plant in Hikkaduwa . The plant was constructed as part of the Hikkaduwa Coastal Zone Waste Management Project and was a collaborative effort between the National Water Supply and Drainage Board and Hikkaduwa Urban Council and the Australian Government, which contributed $A4 million (about Rs. 360 million) towards this project.

Sri Lanka: Restrictions on Big onion imports

Sri Lanka Government has decided restrict the import of Big Onions and to impose accustom Duty/ Surcharge of Rs. 15.00 per kilo of big onions from September 1 to December 31, 2007. The Cabinet has granted its approval to a Memorandum submitted by Agricultural Development and Agrarian Services Minister Maithripala Sirisena on the production of big-onions during Yala season. Although it has been planned to cultivate big onions in 5381 hectares during the Yala season, this year, the land area under production is approximately 4905 hectares. Production cost per a kilogram of big onion by the local farmers is about Rs. 18.00 to Rs.20.00, and for receiving a normal profit to the farmer, it is necessary to maintain a minimum price of Rs.30.00.

Indo-Bangladesh relations and coup in august 1975 –part- VII

By Rabindranath Trivedi - for Asian Tribune from Dhaka

In his speech in Parliament on 25 January 1975, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman said: "I have to report with heavy heart that four members of this Assembly have been assassinated. Earlier, members of the Constituent Assembly were murdered. Among the murdered are Gazi Fazlur Rahman, Nurul Huq and Motahar Master. One man was even shot to death when he was offering his prayers at the Eid congregation --- an event which we have never heard of in our country. Thousands of party workers have been killed.”

Julius Streicher and his relevance in today’s Burma

By Dr. Habib Siddiqui

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines Xenophobia as - fear and hatred of strangers or foreigners or of anything that is strange or foreign. As can be seen, for xenophobia there are two main objects of the phobia (fear). The first is a population group present within a society, which is not considered part of that society. Often they are recent immigrants, but xenophobia may be directed against a group which has been present for centuries. This form of xenophobia can draw out or facilitate hostile and violent reactions, such as mass expulsion of immigrants, or in the worst case, genocide. The second form of xenophobia is primarily cultural, and the objects of the phobia are cultural elements which are considered alien or foreign.

Gagging the media in house

By Vinod Vedi - Syndicate Features

From quite some time now the government has been trying to scare the media by declaring its intention to bring a bill to regulate certain types of content in television broadly described as ‘obscene’ (largely in advertisements) and objectionable. Since the media in a democracy does not get scared easily, chances are that the information minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi will be denied the pleasure of piloting a gag bill in the monsoon session of parliament, which, like the previous sessions, may well be dominated by a non-stop display of BJP tantrums designed to derail proceedings.

Sri Lanka: JVP student leader physically threatens ISSE campus team

In an act of political thuggery, members of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) broke up an International Students for Social Equality (ISSE) campaign at the Peradeniya University in Sri Lanka on Tuesday with threats of physical violence. The JVP’s actions are a desperate attempt to suppress discussion and opposition among students to the Sri Lankan government’s resumption of communal war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and its savage attacks on living standards. Members of the ISSE and Socialist Equality Party (SEP) had set up a book stall in the Arts Faculty and were campaigning against the US-led occupation of Iraq and the renewed civil war in Sri Lanka. The team was distributing a leaflet in Tamil and Sinhala and displaying a range of Marxist literature, including translations of the works of Leon Trotsky and "World Socialist Web Site" journals.

Chennai Sri Lanka Film Festival

President with UN Assistant Secretary

President with Holmes

Mahinda Rajapakse with Johon Holmes

Sri Lanka Government rejected Sir John Holmes’ vituperation

The Government of Sri Lanka, in no uncertain terms, rejected Sir John Holmes’ vituperation that Sri Lanka is not safe for humanitarian workers. Sri Lanka Government has taken exception to Sir John Holmes’ double tongued version said to be made in an interview with Reuter’s news agency. Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayake in a statement made today in the floor of the Parliament of Sri Lanka has categorically rejected the said vituperative statement found in the Reuters news report and emphasized the Government’s total commitment to the safety of humanitarian workers during his talks with Sir John Holmes, United Nations Under Secretary General for the Office for the coordination of Humanitarian Affaires (OCHA). He pointed out that Sir John Holmes has acknowledged and expressed appreciation for the steps taken by the Government with regard to the security of the humanitarian workers engaged in the North and East.