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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2557

Monthly archive

Will Sri Lanka Get The IMF Loan?

A comment by L. Jayasooriya

We understand that the government has asked for a loan of 1.9 billion dollars from the IMF and has proudly stated that it will be on no conditions attached. The party giving the loan always lays down conditions. I suppose what the government meant here was that conditions other than purely financial would not be acceptable. I wish the government had stated it explicitly because we soon expect explicit conditions to be implicitly understood. Does the government remember the days when a 4.5 billion dollar bait was being dangled in front of us like a pendulum and a government minister was actually promoting it on behalf of the so-called "donors"?

New supply route to Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu- CGES

By Ravi Ladduwahetty- Sri Lanka Editor- Asian Tribune

The Government has devised a new supply route to Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu by sea in the eyes of the mounting LTTE attacks on the Government’s food convoys while being transported by road. The food convoys which were sent to Kilinochchi and Mullativu via Oddusudan and Puliyankulam by road was stooped, following advice from the military and security perspectives by end of January, Commissioner General of Essential Services S.B. Divaratne told the post Cabinet news conference this morning. The present system is ship transport effective mid February, is from Trincomalee to Pudumattalam and from there, it is transported via the motor boats which are owned by the Fisheries Corporation Unions, he said.

LTTE has recruited 4700 children during CFA- Media Minister

By Ravi Ladduwahetty- Sri Lanka Editor- Asian Tribune

Sri Lankan Media Minister Anura Yapa this morning charged that the LTTE has forcibly abducted and recruited 4700 children between 2001 and 2004 and a majority of them had been during the period of the Cease Fire Agreement which it signed with the United National Front Government of Ranil Wickremesinghe. Addressing the weekly Cabinet news conference at the Government Information Department, the Government Spokesman and Media Minister also said that the LTTE had forcibly recruited 4700 children between 2001 and 2004 which has been published in a report published under the theme "Children in Armed Conflict" which was published by the former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan

The UN Debunks LTTE Canard of Leaked Documents

The LTTE websites are propagating a story of a leaked UN document giving a casualty figure of 2863. The UN Secretary General’s Spokesperson today clarified that the so-called leaked document was an estimation done locally and that it was not a verified and published document. Responding to a reporter’s question Secretary General’s Spokesperson suggested that it is not possible to verify these estimates given locally and nationally since the UN has no mechanism to count numbers themselves. She emphasized that there were no exact figures. Although the reporter claimed that it was a document of OCHA (Office of the Coordinator UN for Humanitarian Affairs) the websites published some other document.

Teerorist Outfit Chalenges Canadian Government

By Lenin Benedict from Toronto for Asian Tribune

In a show of strength, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), which is also known as Tamil Tigers in Canada organized a huge rally in Toronto on March 16th to show its might to the Canadian Government and challenged its ban on the organization. Thousands of LTTE cadres and its supporters gathered in down town Toronto to form a human chain carrying flags and placards of the banned organizations and pictures of the World’s ruthless terrorist leader, wearing T-shirts and caps with the LTTE logo and challenged the Government of Canada and its law enforcement agencies openly paving way for confrontations.

Militants threaten to kill Canadian woman journalist by March 30, if demands not met

By Farzana Shah- Asian Tribune correspondent in Pakistan

Kidnapped journalist"End of March….. and that basically, I don’t know 18 days or 16 days I am not quite sure how long that is but time is very short and my life is going to end so I need someone to help me Pakistani government or my own government somebody have to move now because my life is going to be over. I want to go home I been in captivity for too long now and "I am gonna be kill just like Polish engineer." These people are serious please help me do something to help me please. The responsibility of this will be on somebody’s shoulder. I haven’t done anything wrong and Taliban want their demands met so "I am pleading please save my life, spare me", pleads the kidnapped Canadian woman journalist in sobbing voice in a video released by her captors to the media on Wednesday.

Ranil stays: UNP Constitution to be amended to devolve power and create Senior Leader

By Ravi Ladduwahetty in Colombo

Ranil- not gone yetOpposition and UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe remained as UNP Leader at the end of the Party’s Working Committee meeting which went late into tonight but the Party decided to amend the Constitution top accommodate two positions as Senior Leader and Leader while also devolving powers. The United National Party Working Committee meeting also agreed to appoint a eight member Committee which is expected to nominate the names of the Senior Leader and Deputy Leader in a report that is expected to be filed by Monday.

China’s ratification of inter-governmental agreement on the Trans – Asian Railway Network triggers countdown

China, becomes the eighth country to ratify the intergovernmental agreement on the Trans – Asian Railway Network. China’s endorsement has triggered the countdown and it is expected the agreement to come into force by June 11, 2009. The Trans-Asian railway network comprises nearly 114,000 km of rail routes linking 28 countries in the Asian region. The Agreement was opened for signature by November 2006 during the Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference on Transport at Busan, Republic of Korea. It has now been signed by 22 countries.

why not outsource national games…?

By Ramu Sharma - Syndicate Features

News from Jharkhand on the progress of the proposed National Games infrastructure continues to cause anxiety. As per reports the state is not yet ready for the Games. In fact the Games have already been postponed thrice because of lack of infrastructure. But the President of the Indian Olympic Association, Suresh Kalmadi, has stuck his neck out and said that the Games would be held between June 1 and 14 this year. Consider these facts. The main stadium is still unfinished and the roads in and around it are yet to be laid. Further, there is neither drainage nor electricity in the area. Yet Kalmadi and the Jharkhand Olympic Association are confident that everything will be ready by June.

French attraction for 'Sri Lanka, the Great Escape'

French tour operators and travel writers are confident that a substantial increase in French tourist arrival could be expected with the opening of places of tourist attractions in the east and restoration of normalcy in the north. They pointed out that with the stabilization of the east and opening up of Nilaweli beach and other places in the eastern coast; the French tourist arrival has jumped up in the first two months of this year compared to 2008. These views were expressed by French journalists and tour operators who attended a press conference and a workshop organized by the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) in Paris on March 17 and in Lyon on March 18 in collaboration with Interface Tourism and the Sri Lankan Embassy in France.

U.S. Moment of Truth on Palestinian – Israeli Conflict

By *Nicola Nasser

In view of a world consensus on a two – state solution for the Arab – Israeli conflict, most political analysts and commentators have concluded that the Israeli Prime Minister – designate Benjamin Netanyahu, who still refuses to affirm his commitment thereto, was to come face to face with his "moment of truth" during his recent meetings earlier this month with visiting U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and her "presidential" envoy for peace in the Middle East, George Mitchell, but the outcome of Clinton’s first regional tour as secretary of state and Mitchell’s second tour in the region has proved vice versa.

Rise of Islamists and sea-piracy in Somalia

By Asif Haroon Raja

For the last 17 years Somalia is ripped apart by anarchy, violence and famine. Since the ouster of President Siad Barre in 1991, the country has not had a proper functioning democratic government. 14 transitional governments have come and gone but the situation remains abysmal. Peace was restored in the war-torn Somalia for the first time when Islamic Courts Union (ICU) led Islamists under Sheikh Sharif Ahmed defeated the warlords and took over the reins of power in June 2006. All Islamist factions were unified and the regime achieved commendable results.

In Canada

Kidnapped Canadian journalist

Lankan Human Rights Minister nails canard on medical supplies to the IDPs

By Ravi Ladduwahetty – Sri Lanka Editor- Asian Tribune

Mahinda SamarasingheMinister of Human Rights and Disaster Management Mahinda Samarasinghe nailed a canard by destructive elements which alleged that 300 patients who were Internally Displaced Persons had died in hospitals due to the lack of drugs in hospitals. The Minister told a news conference that a letter which was allegedly sent by the Director of Health Services in Mullativu Dr Vartharajah which claimed that 300 civilians had died which had been widely circulated in the local media was a damp squib.