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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2403

Monthly archive

Anura Priyadharshana Yapa

Two paramilitary men killed in suicide blast

By Farzana Shah - Reporting from Pakistan

A suicide bomber slammed his motor cycle into a paramilitary compound in Charbagh area of Landi Kotal tehsil in Khyber tribal agency on Thursday, killing two paramilitary troops and injuring another, local officials and witnesses say. Officials said the bomber has tried to enter the compound on an explosives-laden Toyota Corolla motorcycle of the Frontier Corps (FC) camp, but detonated his explosives at the gate when the guards confronted him. Meanwhile, in another incident, as many as fifteen shops were severely damaged in northwest Pakistan's Nowshera city, following a string of three blasts.

Establish private universities to prevent foreign exchange drain

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

A large amount of foreign exchange is drained to other countries as large number people emigrate to other countries to study and this could be prevented by opening up private universities in Sri Lanka was the suggestion of Kulatunga Rajapakse, Managing Director, DSI Group of Companies at the 26th LBR-LBO CEO Forum held at Cinnamon Grand Hotel with Dr Gamini Wickramasinge, Chairman, Bank of Ceylon as the main speaker. He said that the country’s educational base is not that sound as their should be a solid foundation at school level to teach English to make the attempt of the government of making English and IT to expand by 2010.

IMF Team Heading to Sri Lanka

Following a request for $1.9 billion by the Sri Lanka government, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is sending a team of officials to Colombo to negotiate the stand-by arrangement. Recent discussions between IMF and Sri Lankan representatives in Colombo centered mainly on a continuation of items left over from the previous consultation between the two sides. These have been described as part of the periodic consultations, according to IMF sources in Washington. Meanwhile, the Governor of the Central Bank has sough a standby agreement for disbursements totalling $1.9 billion from the IMF.

LTTE in a desperate end game is turning to international apologists to get it off the hook - Geoffrey Van Orden MEP

British Conservative MEP and Chairman of the ‘Friends of Sri Lanka Group’ Geoffrey Van Orden has said, "the LTTE is now in a desperate end game and, typically in such situations, is turning to international apologists to get it off the hook". Van Orden told members of the European Parliament "the greatest service all in this House can do is to call on the LTTE to lay down its arms and to release the civil population from its grip. Then much-needed humanitarian aid can be delivered, people can begin to look forward to better lives, and all Sri Lankans can get back on the path of democratic politics and building a fair and more prosperous society for all its citizens, free from terrorist oppression".

Political crisis deepens as Pakistan reeling under mass protest - Interior ministry fears Mumbai style attack in Karachi

By Farzana Shah- Asian Tribune correspondent in Pakistan

Political crisis is fast turning into a national security crisis in Pakistan as Zardari government continues crackdown unabated on main opposition parties and lawyers, who are determined to carry on the mass protest for restoration of deposed judges and against court decision baring main opposition leader Nawaz Sharif and his brother from contesting polls. Interior Minister Rehman Malik speaking at the parliament on Thursday expressed the fear that Mumbai style attack could take place in Karachi during mass protest launched by the opposition besides opposition leadership was also prone to target killing by miscreants, he added.

Near Miss Renews U.N. Interest in Asteroid Defence

By Thalif Deen, Inter Press Service

As the United Nations grapples with global problems related to collapsing economies, rising poverty and the devastating impact of climate change, there is apparently a new threat looming over Earth: plummeting asteroids. A small asteroid, estimated to be over 200 feet wide, zoomed past the planet last week, causing consternation among scientists and space watchers. "The asteroid that missed the Earth would have had a destructive capacity of between 600 and 1,000 Hiroshima atomic bombs," Walther Lichem, an Austrian diplomat and a member of the International Panel on Asteroid Threat Mitigation, told IPS.

India’s marginal parties float an alternative to Cong, and BJP

By M Rama Rao, India Editor, Asian Tribune

India’s nine marginal parties, most of them regional phenomenon, have come together to offer an alternative to the entrenched Congress and the challenger to the Delhi seat BJP. It is not the first such attempt though. Mayawati and Jayalaithaa Jayaram, two key regional satraps stayed away from the launch of the rally that was held at Dobbaspet, about 50 km from Bangalore on Thursday in the backyard of former Prime Minister Hardanahalli Doddegowda Devegowda, who heads his own faction of Janata Dal, styled as the Janata Dal- Secular. Both of them deputed their close aides signaling that they have not foreclosed their post-election options.

Washington Commentary: Moving Into A New Relationship With The Muslim World

By Ernest Corea

Some recent foreign policy moves by the Obama administration indicate that having talked the talk about seeking a "new way forward" toward the Muslim world "based on mutual interest and mutual respect" it is now ready to walk that walk. President Obama faces some risks in doing this. He will undoubtedly feed the political bloodlust of the lunatic fringe. They continue to flaunt his middle name, Hussein, on anti-Obama banners. Living in abysmal depths of ignorance as they do, they misspell it. He will also be showered with criticism by politicians and pundits for taking on too much, too soon. Obama, however, has never been a single-issue person, and the popular view is that a president must be able walk and chew gum at the same time.

No LTTE attack on Army’s Artillery positions- Military spokesman

By Ravi Ladduwahetty- Sri Lanka Editor- Asian Tribune

Sri Lanka’s Military Spokesman Brigadier Udaya Nanayakkara this morning, refuted a news report which recently appeared in the pro- LTTE website that the LTTE Black Tiger Commandos had attacked six Sri Lanka Army Artillery positions in the early hours of Tuesday and that over 50 Security Forces personnel were dead. "This is totally false, mischievous and misleading, the Military," Spokesman said. The report said that Six artillery weapons platforms in Thearaavil, located around 18 kilometres from Puthukkudiyiruppu junction, were completely destroyed in a "precise mission" carried out by the Black Tiger commandos and the Tiger artillery formation and Ammunition dumps were also destroyed.

US lobbying for continuation of Zardari rule? - How US perceives Pakistani political crisis?

By Farzana Shah- Asian Tribune correspondent in Pakistan

As the political mess is getting messier US has started worrying and to some extent exerting pressure on concerned Pakistani political players to defuse the tension. During last 24 hours Holbrooke spoke to Pakistani president and prime minister besides Ambassador Patterson is engaged in talks with Pakistani government and the opposition leader Nawaz Sharif. Today’s press briefing at State Department clearly indicates US intention for the time being which seems to be inclined towards sitting President Zardari’s camp.

LTTE prays for BJP victory in India

By Janaka Perera

The much vaunted international crusade against terrorism loudly proclaimed by big powers appears to be more rhetoric than action when it comes to their self interest. JHU (National Heritage Party) Parliamentarian Venerable Athureliye Ratana made this observation this week during a television debate on the attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Pakistan. His comments on the TNL channel came a day before a LTTE suicide bomber struck at the Jumma mosque at Godapitiya, Akurassa, in the Matara district during the national Milad-Un-Nabi celebration, on Tuesday March 10.

Sri Lankan Govt defends obtaining IMF aid

By Ravi Ladduwahetty - Sri Lanka Editor- Asian Tribune

Minister YapaThe Government has defended its decision in getting the US$ 1.9 billion International Monetary Fund package in the light of the current global context. "The decision of the Government to go to the IMF was inevitable as the financial crunch facing the country in the light of the global backdrop was too great," Media Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa told the weekly Cabinet news conference at the Information Department auditorium. There have been times that we have gone to the IMF in the light of the depleting Foreign Exchange Reserves and there is nothing wrong with that, he said.

Media Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa

Earnest Corea

Hillary Clinton

Mahinda Rajapaksa

Hillary Clinton

Mahinda Rajapaksa

Sri Lanka: UN denounces LTTE for the misuse of food destined for children

The UN has deplored the diversion of high-energy therapeutic food supplies intended for severely malnourished children to Liberation Tigers of Tamils Eelam (LTTE) fighters in combat zones in Sri Lanka’s north. A statement released on 11 March by the UN country office in Sri Lanka said that BP-100 high-energy biscuits found in the possession of a dead Tamil Tiger came from supplies targeted at severely malnourished children. "The UN deplores that such life-saving items, destined for severely malnourished children, were diverted from their intended purpose," the statement said. "The last shipment of BP-100 was sent with all due government authorisations by the UN Children’s Fund [UNICEF] to the Ministry of Health Regional Directors of Health Services in Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu in June 2007, for the treatment of severely malnourished children in those districts."


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