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

Monthly archive


Prabhakaran Always For Personal Fiefdom

Liam Fox with President MahindaIt was evident all along that the LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran was not interested in a political solution to the issues in Sri Lanka and the Tamil people, but in establishing a personal fiefdom for himself, said the British Shadow Defence Secretary Liam Fox is discussions with President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees today. He was appreciative of the leadership of President Rajapaksa and his ability to muster a powerful coalition that brought in divergent political positions; and by this to proceed with his initiative to free the country of terrorism.

Architects to "Do more with Less"

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

The Sri Lanka Institute of Architects (SLIA) held its 27th annual sessions with the inauguration of Architect 2009 Trade Exhibition at the BMICH. At the inaugural ceremony Prof Mohan Munasinghe, co-winner of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize making key-note address spoke on climate change, sustainable development and the role of the Architects. The welcome address was made by Jayantha Perera, President SLIA and Dinesh Gunawardena, Minister of Urban Development and Sacred Area Development; Dr Rajitha Senaratne, Minister of Construction and Engineering Services and Ms Ferial Ashraff, Minister of Housing and Common Amenities also spoke.

PACE Human Rights Prize to be awarded to British Irish Rights Watch for 'outstanding' action to defend human rights

British Irish Rights Watch has been selected as the winner of the first ever Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) Human Rights Prize, which honors "outstanding civil society action in the defence of human rights in Europe". The independent non-governmental organization - which has been monitoring the human rights dimension of the conflict in Northern Ireland, and latterly the peace process, since 1990 - was unanimously selected from among fourteen individuals and NGOs nominated for the prize by a distinguished panel including leading figures from the world of human rights.

Actions By Sri Lankan Government Forces, Rebels Possible War Crimes

The top United Nations human rights official has deplored the mounting deaths and injuries of civilians due to the “bitter” conflict in northern Sri Lanka between Government forces and a rebel group, pointing out that some moves by both sides could amount to war crimes. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said that certain actions undertaken by the Sri Lankan military and by the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) could constitute violations of international human rights and humanitarian law.

BOI To Facilitate Establishment Of ‘Knowledge City’

BOI is in the process of establishing a ‘Knowledge City’ in Henegama, in the Gampaha District to cater to the growing demand in the tertiary education sector on public-private partnership basis. With the limited no of vacancies in the State Universities the no of students opting to go abroad or enrolling in privately run tertiary education institutes who offer degrees/diplomas with the collaboration of foreign educational Institutes is in the rise.

Who will win free judiciary or political jugglers?

By Farzana Shah – Asian Tribune correspondent in Pakistan

Those advocating and protesting for free judiciary since Musharraf rule up till now during Zardari rule are wondering will Nawaz Sharif put his personal interests before cause for free judiciary in the wake of Zardari’s willingness for reconciliation with Nawaz. Important decisions are expected in the next 24 hours regarding prevailing political crisis in Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari agreed to reconciliation with Nawaz Sharif.

Did BOI Approve Equipment For LTTE Arms Manufacture?

By Ruwan Weerakoon in Sri Lanka

Using facilities and equipment approved by the government-run Board of Investments (BOI), the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had imported lathe machines and other equipment for the manufacture of its military hardware, according to military sources. The then head of the BoI, Arjunna Mahendran had approved the imports and facilitated their transport to the Vanni which was under LTTE control. Military sources say there is documentary evidence of these transactions involving the BoI..

First consignment of Jaffna produce arrives in Colombo

By Ravi Ladduwahetty – Sri Lanka Editor- Asian Tribune

The first consignment of Jaffna produce was transported to Colombo via the A- 9 highway and reached Colombo yesterday. The consignments comprised red onions, beet roots, dry shrimps and delicious crabs and prawns, famed for their quality have found their way to Colombo markets once again after the first convoy of 22 lorries reached Colombo along the Jaffna – Colombo A-9 road Thursday (12) evening. The Colombo-bound convoy after its ceremonial start from the Government Food Store in Navatkuli in Jaffna Thursday (12) morning after an absence of two decades, reached Elephant Pass at about 10 a.m. Leading Jaffna businessmen according to Hindu traditions, garlanded the lorries carrying their inaugural harvest to Colombo before the fleet left the Navatkuli store.

U.S. now wants Political Solutions to address legitimate aspirations of all communities in Sri Lanka

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent Asian Tribune

Hillary ClintonThe United States which continually reiterated that a political solution to Sri Lanka conflict is viable and durable only when addressed the aspirations of the 12% minority Tamils is now officially states that this South Asian nation needs to bring a political solution that addresses the legitimate aspirations of all Sri Lanka’s communities. Gordon Duguin, acting deputy spokesman for the United States Department of State stated what Secretary Hillary Clinton told in a telephone conversation to Sri Lanka president Mahinda Rajapaksa Thursday evening. Mr. Duguin said at the State Department press briefing in Washington that "Secretary Clinton called on President Rajapaksa to devise a political solution to the ongoing conflict.

If Unbigoted, Pakistan Can Survive

By J. N. Raina - Syndicate Features

Soothsayers’ prophecy about Pakistan has started coming true. Former U S President George W Bush had once warned Pakistan to be ‘either with us’ on war against terror, ‘or else’ it would be reduced to a ‘Stone Age’. In the face of dire consequences, the then Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf, after being snubbed, became an instant ally of the Americans, in the wage ‘jihad’ against global terror and its epicenter in Pakistan. Amazingly, while Bush had failed in his ‘mission’ to contain terrorism, Taliban has succeeded in pushing Pakistan back to the ‘Stone Age’. Bush was perhaps oblivious of the fact that there are different ways of chiselling stones.

Minister Yapa inspects BOI Kandy Industrial Park and holds interactive meeting with investors

Anura Priyadarshna Yapa, Minister of Enterprise Development Investment Promotion and Information and Minister of Mass Media and Communications recently visited the Board of Investment’s Kandy Industrial Park. Minister Yapa chaired a meeting where many of the leading entrepreneurs in the Kandy Industrial Park participated. This was an interactive meeting with investors at the zone and discussed some of the challenges they face. These included issues relating to exchange rates, Labor flexibility, telecommunications, power supply, transporting goods and ground rents. Minister Yapa expressed his satisfaction in being able to hold this interactive meeting between the BOI with enterprise representatives as it provided an excellent platform to resolve issues.

LTTE blocks evacuation of civilians from uncleared area in the Mullaitivu district

The LTTE poses the most serious obstacle preventing the evacuation of civilians, who are confined to the safe zone in the narrow coastal strip in the Mullaitivu district. Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama, referring to the dialogue with India and the US in this regard, explained that the Government of Sri Lanka is at present unable to avail itself of the offers of assistance to evacuate the civilians, made by these countries due to the LTTE’s fierce resistance in releasing the people, since the civilians have been forcibly held against their will as human shields to protect key LTTE terrorist leaders and their families.


Liam Fox with President Mahinda

Hillary Clinton

EU, ASEAN and the UN should call for concerted efforts to foster a meaningful dialogue in Burma

By - Zin Linn

The EU's policy on Myanmar has not produced the results. It neither facilitated a national reconciliation or nor ushered in badly needed political reform. EU's sanctions have not produced miracles because they are targeted ones and lack of support from neighboring countries, especially China. It was in October 1996 that EU had defined a 'Common Position' towards Myanmar. The position has been reassessed, and in some cases modified, every six months since then. Amongst the measures included in the Common Position are an arms embargo, an export ban from the EU of any equipment that might be used for internal repression, a visa ban and a freeze on funds held abroad by leaders of the regime and their families, a prohibition for EU companies to invest in state-owned enterprises as well as the suspension of high-level governmental visits to Burma.