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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2613

Monthly archive

UN Secretary General Bank Ki-moon

Sri Lanka President offered gold ornaments to Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi

Hilary Rajakarunanayake, Editor – Sri Lanka, Asian Tribune

Sri Lanka President paying reverence President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Sunday (May 24) paid homage to the sacred Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi in Anuradhapura and offered gold ornaments. The President also planted a Bo sapling at the ‘Pahala Maluwa’, a Cultural Ministry official confirmed. The Sacred Jaya Siri Maha Bodhi in Anuradhapura is reckoned as the oldest surviving historical tree in the world. It was brought to Sri Lanka by the Theri Sangamitta, daughter of Emperor Asoka and was planted in the Mahameghavana Park in Anuradhapura in 249 BC by King Devanampiyatissa. It is said to be the southern branch of the Jaya Siri Maha Bodhi at Buddha Gaya in India under which Lord Buddha attained enlightenment.

Prabhakaran is dead: LTTE

PrabhakaranThe Tamil Tigers officially acknowledged on Sunday "with heavy hearts" the death of their leader, Velupillai Prabhakaran, a week ago by Sri Lankan Government troops. This is according to a statement from the Tigers. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) said: "We announce today, with inexpressible sadness and heavy hearts, that our incomparable leader and supreme commander ... attained martyrdom fighting the military oppression." The LTTE's head of international relations, Selvarasa Pathmanathan, said that Prabhakaran, "was the heart and soul and the symbol of hope, pride and determination for the whole nation of people of Tamil Eelam."

Government demands BNP chief Khaleda to leave her cantonment house by June 30

M.A. Qader-Our Correspondent in Bangladesh

The government on Sunday served a third notice on main opposition BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia to leave her Dhaka Cantonment house by June 30. The military lands administrator sending the notice asked her to hand the home over to military lands and cantonments directorate by the stipulated time. Attorney general Mahbubey Alam said Khaleda was served with a (second) notice on May 7 and told to reply by 15 days why she should not leave the house. She did not respond by the deadline that ended on May 22.

China’s role vital for Sri Lanka’s security

By Janaka Perera

Writing in the Op-Ed page of the Daily Times (Islamabad) on May 22, on Pakistan’s war against the Taliban, Najmuddin A. Shah says: "This is a war for Pakistan’s survival. It must be fought without illusions and without yielding to the temptation to believe that one has credible and willing partners with whom a negotiated peace could be worked out." Needless to say Sri Lanka’s experience with the LTTE has been identical. It is in recognition of this that Pakistan felicitated the Sri Lankan Government on achieving a "great victory over terrorism". No doubt Islamabad will draw inspiration from Sri Lanka’s success though the background to terrorism in the two countries is vastly different. Pakistani troops have already made considerable gains in Swat valley.

DMK decides on names for ministerial berths; announcement today

Gopal Ethiraj from Chennai

Stalin, Dayanidhi Maran and AzhagiriThe DMK on Sunday decided to end its wrangling with the Congress and join the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government after settling for seven ministerial berths, including three of cabinet rank, sources said.
"The problem is resolved. We are joining (the UPA government)," Arcot Veeraswami, a senior DMK leader, said in Chennai. "They are working out the finer details. It is only the DMK supremo M. Karunanidhi who can take a final decision on the names of ministers," he added.

The Role of Media for Tobacco Control

By Manjari Peiris

"To deliver a health message effectively and in confidence it should consist of 3 significant factors, viz. authoritative, comprehensive and clear. The nature has gifted the human brain with science to be authoritative, religion to be ethical and art to address the wisdom with our feelings. If we use all these factors we may deliver a strong message to the society”, said Professor Carlo Fonseka, the Chairman of the National Alcohol and Tobacco Authority addressing the media on “How to deliver an effective health message to the public". Professor Fonseka said so addressing a workshop organized by Jeewaka Foundation for media personnel held in Colombo, to evaluate their contribution for tobacco control during the recent past.

Sri Lanka Tourism to focus on Iranian market : Minister Moragoda to lead private sector delegation to Tehran

Milinda MoragodaMinister of Tourism Milinda Moragoda left for Iran on Sunday, May 24, with a view to examining potential for increasing tourist arrivals from Iran to Sri Lanka and improving cooperation in the field of tourism. He was accompanied by a private sector delegation representing several leading Sri Lankan companies engaged in the hospitality industry, both travel and hotel sectors. The delegation will meet with their counterparts, discuss arrangements for increased tourist traffic from Iran to Sri Lanka, as well as examine the potential for Sri Lanka hoteliers to invest in Iran as well as to reach management agreements with Iranian hoteliers, where possible.

Sri Lanka NGO confirms the death of LTTE leader Prabhakaran and his entire family members

Sri Lanka’s leading NGO confirms the death of Prabhakaran and his family members. He said that he received the confirmation officially from Oslo. Sewalanka Foundation President Dr. Harsha Kumar Navaratne speaking to Asian Tribune said that he received the confirmation regarding the death of the leader of Tamil Tigers from Oslo. He disclosed the death was officially revealed by the Norwegians, through "a contact person who is actually the NGO consortium fellow in Oslo." Dr. Harsha Kumar Navaratne also disclosed about the negotiations American, Norwegian Ambassadors as well as NGOs had with the Sri Lanka Government to safeguard the Tamil Tiger leadership and the cadres belonging to the outfit. He revealed after working out a plan to safeguard by surrendering, suddenly the Tiger leadership as usual reneged and went on fighting.

IDPs in the welfare camps identify and inform Tiger cadres in their midst

Hilary Rajakarunanayake, Editor – Sri Lanka, Asian Tribune

Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in welfare camps have begun sneaking on several former Tigers hiding among the inmates and handing them over to the Army. This was disclosed by a high Army official today (25). In several instances, the civil inmates in camps have singled out and assaulted the former Tigers living among them for abducting their children and handing them to the LTTE. Several such former Tigers who have been beaten up by civilians have been hospitalized by the Army.

7259 Tigers who surrendered are in Rehabilitation camps

Hilary Rajakarunanayake, Editor – Sri Lanka, Asian Tribune

To rehabilitate the 7259 LTTE activists who have voluntarily surrendered to the Army, during the last six months, several new Rehabilitation camps are already set up in the North, said an Army official. Of these about 4000 have surrendered within the last two months, he told "Asian Tribune". Of those undergoing rehabilitation at present are 2214 at the Pampamadu Technical College, Vavuniya, 2171 at the Rambakulama Balika Vidyalaya, 1457 at Omantha Vidyalaya, 757 at the Pallakelle Welfare camp, 140 at Tellipilai camp in Jaffna, 120 at the Welikande camp, and 400 women at the Cooperative building in Punthottam, making up a total of 7259 persons.

Shattered dreams of Ms. Anita Pratap

By Leel Pathirana

Anita Pratap"I still hope I will return some day to do a biography of Pirabhakaran. That’s one of the few remaining unfulfilled dreams I have left in my life. I have no doubts that he is the most important guerilla leader of our times." Says former Indian South Asia Bureau Chief of CNN Ms. Anita Pratap when she was interviewed by a pro-LTTE website 10 months back (July, 15th 2008). She asserted that LTTE is still strong despite the current retreat and LTTE is a resilient group. They are recouping, reorganizing, preparing for a comeback. She exaggerated then the attack on President Rajapakse’s convoy of aircraft as serious. It shows the LTTE’s lethal capability to come close to the heart of the government apparatus.

"Now is the time to heal – for all Sri Lankans to unite for a just and lasting peace "– Bank Ki-moon

Bank Ki-moonSri Lanka government is doing its utmost. Government’s tremendous efforts are commendable. However Sri Lanka Government lacks resources. There is a wide gap between what is needed and what is available. UN Secretary General Bank Ki-moon spoke at a media conference after meeting Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Kandy on Saturday. He said, "That is why I am here." "The long conflict is over. Now is the time to heal – for all Sri Lankans to unite for a just and lasting peace. We must help seize this opportunity," added Bank Ki-moon

Anita Pratap

Anita Pratab with LTTE Leader Prabhakaran