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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 103

Bishop condemns Virgin Mary rape documentary

London, Dec. 23: A Catholic bishop today criticised a British television documentary that suggests the Virgin Mary may have been raped by a Roman soldier.

Abducted EPRLF man found dead

By Sunil Jayasiri & S.S.Selvanayagam

Daily Mirror:The body of a senior member of the EPRLF(Varatharajah Perumal group), Poopalapillai Alaguthurai (35) abducted allegedly by the LTTE on December 16 was found on Saturday in the Mandoor River with injuries supposedly sustained due to torture.

Police raid LTTE court in Kalmunai

Daily Mirror:The Kalmunai headquarters police arrested a 65-year-old pensioner allegedly serving as an LTTE judge when the police surrounded a house at Marie Amman Road in Pandiruppu on a tip-off,police sources said.

Afghanistan: Seven German Soldiers Killed In Crash

Kabul, 21 Dec., (RFE/RL): Seven German soldiers serving with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan were killed today when their helicopter crashed near Kabul.

Ne Win relatives continue to languish in Insein jail, as courts keep them waiting

Yangon, Dec.21: The fate of four relatives of former Burmese strongman Ne Win, who were sentenced to death for plotting a coup, continues to hang in the balance with their patriarch.

PM:Govt to do the best in 2003

Bangkok, Dec 22 (TNA): – The government will continue to perform its best in the year 2003, no matter whatever external factors will be, according to Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra.

Government should build confidence in financial sector – Ajith Cabraal

Colombo, (PRIU) Dec. 20:What the Government should do now is step-in to manage carefully the steps in building confidence in the overall financial sector,” Ajith Nivard Cabraal, Management Consultant and the former Chairman of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (ICASL) told the PRIU today. Cabraal’s comments were in response to the Central Bank announcement regarding the liquidation of Pramuka Savings & Development Bank Ltd (PSDB).

Burmese opposition groups to brace critical period shortly.

Bangkok Dec. 22: The Democratic forces that are outside Burma and are in Sanglaburi, in Thailand are bracing for a harder time in the near future. All those offices of Burmese various organizations are asked to shut down and the persons connected with such office to leave forthwith.

Govt. - LTTE to discuss HSZ issue

The Sunday Leader:Elaborate plans are being made by both the government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to find out how best the High Security Zone (HSZ) could be used for human settlement without causing harm or fear to the civilians, government sources said.

Call for “Independent” Muslim representation

By Dilrukshi Handunnetti

Sunday Leader: The eastern based Muslim politicians are demanding the inclusion of “distinct and independent” Muslim representation at the next round of peace talks if the government intends retaining Ports Development Minister Rauf Hakeem as a permanent member of the government peace negotiating team.

Interview with Lankadeepa: President refutes anti-peace charges

By Gunasinghe Herath

Sunday Times: President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga has declared that she was doubtful about the motives of the LTTE and as the head of the State she was only pointing out the deficiencies of the current peace process.

Westborg leaves for Oslo

Sunday Times:Norwegian Ambassador Jon Westborg left for Oslo yesterday for urgent consultation in the face of the breaking scandal on the import of radio equipment for the LTTE by the Norwegian embassy in Colombo as diplomatic cargo.

Powerful satellite equipment for LTTE in VOT cargo

Sunday Times:Amid the raging controversy over broadcasting equipment the LTTE has acquired duty free through the Norwegian Embassy in Colombo, another serious irregularity has now surfaced.

Myanmar: Trade ties Expanded with China

The bilateral trade between China and Myanmar has kept growing this year, and China has become the third largest trade partner of Myanmar, after Singapore and Thailand, according to the statistics of Myanmar.

Cloned Babies Arriving Soon?

New York, (AP): -- The race to produce the first birth of a human clone is nearing the finish line -- if you believe the public pronouncements.

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