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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2835

Monthly archive

Pranab Mukherjee

Peshawar Base to station JF-17 Thunder Aircraft Squadron: Pak Air Chief

By Farzana Shah-Asian Tribune Correspondent in Pakistan

Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force, who is undertaking his inaugural visits to various PAF Bases after assuming the command of Pakistan Air Force, visited PAF Base, Peshawar on Friday. On his arrival at the Base, he was presented with guard of honor. He also reviewed the parade presented by the base personnel. Addressing the Airmen, Air Chief said, "The first ever Fighter Squadron of JF-17 Thunder aircraft will be raised and stationed at Pakistan Air Force Base, Peshawar. By the end of year 2009, full strength of JF-17 Thunder aircraft squadron, which will also be the first ever squadron in the world, will be operational at PAF Base, Peshawar".

UNP asks for Parliamentary Select Committee to probe dubious finance companies

By Ravi Ladduwahetty- Sri Lanka Editor- Asian Tribune

The main Opposition United National Party has requested the Secretary General of Parliament to appoint a Parliamentary Select Committee which will be empowered to probe the affairs of dubious finance companies which have been engaged in mass scale fraud of depositors’ funds. This request has been made on the sidelines of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee on Finance this morning. This proposal comes in the wake of the Rs. 26 billion scam of the Ceylinco Group’s Golden key Credit Card Co Ltd which also has resulted in the remanding of the Ceylinco Group Chairman Lalith Kotelawela and 15 other suspects in what is described as the single largest fraud to rock independent Sri Lanka along with other unregistered finance companies which attracted large scale deposits such as Okanda Finance, and other fraudsters such as Savithi Ranasinghe Danduwam Mudalali and Sri Lanka Human Resources Development Cooperative Bank Society Ltd who/ which pledged unusually high interest rates to depositors.

Pakistan faced 1,842 incidents of terrorism during last 15 months

By Farzana Shah-Asian Tribune Correspondent in Pakistan

During last 15 months Pakistan faced 1,842 incidents of terrorism from January 2008 to March 2009. The figures were presented by interior ministry during question and hour session of the National Assembly of Pakistan. According to the figures an average of five terrorist incidents took place in the country every day during the last fifteen months. The statistics showed 1,395 people were killed in these terror incidents happened in last 15 months.

Protest against federalism in Nepal

Kosh Raj Koirala – Asian Tribune Correspondent in Nepal

At a time when all other political parties have agreed in principle to embrace federal state structures in the country, one of the left parties in Constituent Assembly (CA) in Nepal has announced to launch nationwide agitation against the federalism starting April 18. The leftist party Rastriya Janamorcha Nepal (RJN) has directed its all district units to launch agitation to make the government yield to their demand.

Jaya getting ready for King Maker’s role in Delhi

By M Rama Rao, India Editor, Asian Tribune

Jayalalithaa With pollsters predicting a hung parliament, Jayalalithaa Jayaram, the AIADMK General Secretary is getting ready to position herself as the King maker in Delhi. The five-phase election to constitute the new Indian parliament would be over on May 16. She has asked the voters to send AIADMK front to Parliament in a big way to play ‘due’ role in government formation.

US pledge at the Tokyo Donors' Conference

By Wajid Ali Syed - Washington Correspondent

US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard C. Holbrooke announced the United States’ intent to provide support to the Government of Pakistan totaling $1 billion over a two year period (2009-2010) at the April 17, 2009 Donors Conference in Tokyo to support Pakistan’s International Monetary Fund (IMF) Stand-By Arrangement. The US assistance, which is subject to Congressional approval, will support development and social safety net spending to meet Pakistan’s short term needs, as identified by the IMF

Failure to understand the conflict by UN and the West has created a humanitarian Crisis – Prof. Rohan Gunaratna

By-Leel Pathirana - For Asian Tribune

Prof. Rohan Gunaratna"Sri Lanka has become a living laboratory on how to and how not to fight terrorism. Governments from around the world have started to study the Sri Lankan case. Western and other military, law enforcement security and intelligence services are today consulting the Sri Lankan government on how they reduced the LTTE power from a formidable to a mediocre organization. Sri Lanka provides the best case study of how to dismantle a terrorist group militarily. Sri Lanka still needs to develop its core competencies to fight LTTE's domestic and foreign support base politically, economically and diplomatically. Until then the conflict will subsist and may even revive, said Prof: Rohan Gunaratna

Young leaders and professionals from Sri Lanka conclude 3-week visit to U.S.

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent Asian Tribune

A group of 18 young entrepreneurs and professionals from Sri Lanka concluded a three-week working tour of the U.S. government in Washington, D.C. recently with a reception at the Sri Lankan embassy here. The group, selected from among young leaders and business people throughout Sri Lanka, visited U.S. government departments and institutions and spent four days at the University of Virginia in nearby Charlottesville, Va. The program was sponsored by the U.S. State Department.

Prabhakaran rebuked for not surrendering and holding Tamil civilians as human shield

By Ruwan Weerakoon in Colombo

Mahinda RajapaksaPresident Mahinda Rajapaksa rebukes Prabhakaran for not surrendering with his remaining armed cadres and for his failure to release the innocent Tamil civilians held by him as human shield. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa told Asian Tribune Friday evening that he gave the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) leader Velupillai Prabhakaran and his few remaining leaders 48 hours of respite to surrender to the military along with their cadres and also release the civilians held hostage as human shields in the thin sliver of l7 sq. kilometers of land at Puthumaathalan in the north-eastern coastal belt declared a ‘No Fire Zone’ for civilians caught in the conflict.

TNA delegation meets Indian officials, Pranab asks Colombo to extend the ‘pause’

By M Rama Rao, India Editor, Asian Tribune

Pranab MukherjeeA TNA delegation’s visit to Delhi has coincided with a forthright statement from External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee that no-fire zone should continue in Sri Lanka. He has ruled out any Indian mediation saying the ethnic Tamil imbroglio and the war in Vanni are the Island nation’s internal affairs. 'India is deeply concerned about the humanitarian situation in Sri Lanka. Continuing conflicts have been taking a heavy toll among Tamil civilians caught in the crossfire (between Sri Lankan troops and LTTE)’, Mukherjee, who is electioneering in West Bengal said in a prepared statement issued at a press conference in Kolkata. The press meet was called at short notice according to media dispatches.

Emergency response stepped up in Sri Lanka, new displacement at 63,000

UNHCR has stepped up its emergency response in Sri Lanka’s north, where displacement numbers are growing as a result of heavy fighting between the military and the Liberation Tamil Tigers of Eelam (LTTE). So far, more than 63,000 people have fled the conflict zone in the north-eastern coastal pocket and are being accommodated at several transit and internal displacement sites in the districts of Vavuniya, Jaffna and Mannar.

Jayalalithaa Jayaram

President Mahinda Rajapaksa

Vijay Nambiar

Link aid to political transformation of Sri Lanka’s North and East, ICG tells donors

By M Rama Rao, India Editor, Asian Tribune

The International Crisis Group in its latest report on Sri Lanka says the twin humanitarian crises facing the country require urgent and coordinated international action. It disputes the government claim that the Eastern Province is a model of democratisation and post-conflict reconstruction and asks the donors to force Colombo to take tangible steps for the democratic political transformation in both the North and the East. "Before committing any additional reconstruction and development assistance, donors must insist that the basic conditions for sustainable development are guaranteed and that the government has taken tangible steps towards democratic political transformation in both the north and the east", the report says.

WFP approves $64 mn for food assistance to IDPs in FATA, NWFP

By Farzana Shah-Asian Tribune Correspondent in Pakistan

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced to continue providing food assistance to Pakistan's internally displaced persons (IDPs) until November 2009 under its new emergency operation. With a total value of US$ 64.2 million, WFP will be able to provide over 97,000 tons of food to up to 600,000 beneficiaries who have fled from Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and some districts of North West Frontier Province (NWFP) because of insecurity.

The Worldwide LTTE Propaganda Organization

By Jay de Silva

The international community is slowly beginning to realize the extent to which the LTTE has been able to influence world opinion through its propaganda about the conflict in Sri Lanka. The facts are even more shocking than what they appear to be on the surface. In fact, even today, most analysts are unable to determine whether the propaganda organization has a single director or several. However, they are all agreed that Prabhakaran is not be the overall head of whatever the organization is, but is merely the leader of the terrorist group known as the LTTE, and the iconic figurehead displayed for public consumption.

Why 48 Hours Not Enough?

Commentry by L. Jayasooriya

Our army commander does not know where exactly Prabakaran is but those who want to rescue him know where exactly he will be at a stated time. Le me explain to our government why 48 hours are not sufficient. It is because that time is too short to arrange a warship carrying several fully armed helicopters to approach close enough to Sri Lanka for the helicopters to zero in from any direction to the exact location where Prabakaran is so that they could pluck him up and fly away.