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January 30, 2010

Jan 31 - Feb 6:

President Rajapakse’s second term: Advisory Opinion vs Judgment proper

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Some very interesting questions were raised by the reader Nalaka at comment #147 made in response to my article “The magic behind the Mahinda Rajapakse victory”. [DBSJ]

Voice of America editorial urges "dialogue with all parties, including Tamils inside and outside Sri Lanka"

Sri Lanka government should "promote justice and political reconciliation for all its citizens, and hold dialogue with all parties, including Tamils inside and outside Sri Lanka, on new mechanisms for devolving power," writes The Voice of America, in an editorial published on Sri Lanka's Independence Day on Feb 4, 2010: [TC]

New Delhi must now deal with a vastly Strengthened Rajapakse at the Pinnacle of his Political Career

by K.Bhadrakumar

The Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa’s victory in the election held on Jan 26 becomes a defining moment for regional security. [TC]

War displaced start to pick up the pieces

About a year ago, civil war raged around Vasanthi Kumari's house in northern Sri Lanka. "There was a loud sound and `Appa' [father] went out," Kumari, 21, told IRIN [TC]

Heartbreak in Post-War Jaffna

by Adele Barker

On a sandy street on the northern shore of the Jaffna Peninsula in Sri Lanka, an innocuous building surrounded by mango and palmyra trees houses a rehabilitation center run by a Catholic priest, who in January 2005 just days after the tsunami began to counsel survivors [TC]

India nervously watches post-election Sri Lanka

By Deepal Jayasekera

Since Mahinda Rajapakse won a second presidential term in Sri Lanka last week, India’s dilemma over how to pursue its interests in the island has only intensified. [TC]

Legal Limbo: The Uncertain Fate of Detained LTTE Suspects in Sri Lanka

Source: Human Rights Watch

The Sri Lankan government is currently detaining at least 11,000 people, including more than 550 children, in so-called "rehabilitation centers." These individuals, said to be associated with the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), were among the almost 300,000 displaced persons confined in detention camps in the final months of the armed conflict with the LTTE. [TC]

Sri Lankan SEP condemns EPDP thuggery on Kayts

The Socialist Equality Party (SEP) condemns the actions of Eelam People Democratic Party (EPDP) thugs on the northern island of Kayts last Thursday, following the January 26 presidential election. [TC]

Tamil American Peace Initiative Urges the New Government to Represent All Citizens of Sri Lanka

The Tamil American Peace Initiative (TAPI), a group of Tamil Americans dedicated to peaceful change in Sri Lanka, called on Sri Lanka's newly reelected President Mahinda Rajapaksa to a forge a new path and create the conditions to repair the deep divide between the people of the island. [TC]

Tamils and Sri Lanka: A wake-up call

By: Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

The results of the recent presidential elections are being analyzed and interpreted in clinical detail by many commentators from their respective vantage points, experiences and predilections.[TC]

Poll outcome @ Menik Farm: "We want an opportunity to rebuild our shattered lives"

by IRIN News

As the results of Sri Lanka's first post-war presidential election poured in, the mood at Menik Farm, in the main government-run camp for the ethnic Tamil internally displaced (IDPs), in the northern town of Vavuniya, was sober [TC]
 
‘Campaign of alleged secret agreement that could divide the country led to rousing of communal sentiments’

Full Text of Press Release - National Peace Council

Post Election Challenge for Country

President Mahinda Rajapaksa won a second term at the Presidential Election of Janumary 26 with an unexpectedly big majority although this election result has been called into question by the main opposition candidate, General Sarath Fonseka. [TC]

TNA parliamentarians must not mislead innocent Tamil speaking people

by Veerasingham Anandasangaree

I humbly appeal to the TNA Members of Parliament in general and to M/s. S.Senathirajah, R.M.Imam, Selvam Adaikalanathan, Vinotharalingam and Suresh Premachandran of the Federal Party, TELO and the EPRLF of the alliance, not to mislead the innocent Tamil speaking people who easily get swayed by sentiments [TC]

'President Rajapaksa has it in his power to reap a peace dividend'-Toronto Star [TC]

Back to Africa: A new Haitian homeland?

By Leo Hornak

If a proposal under consideration by the African Union this week were to bear fruit, Haitians made homeless by the earthquake could start afresh in a new homeland in Africa. [independent]

Sinhala "intellectuals" with "pariah" thoughts replace "mau-basa" with "mau-bima" and "kaduwa" with "traitor"

by Dushy Ranetunge

It's been hilarious reading the “pariah” thoughts of Sinhalese “intellectuals” over the past few weeks in a Sri Lankan newspaper, especially as the term was derogatorily used previously as “Para” demala. [TC]

A Scottish journalist's experience of voting in Scottish and Tamil referendums

Stuart Cosgrove, a Scottish journalist, broadcaster and television executive voted in a "Tamil referendum', held across the United Kingdom this weekend. [TC]

Rajapakse won election because majority of war euphoria infected Sinhalese wanted to keep the Tamils in their place

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

So begins the Rajapaksa era, heralded by a massive vote of confidence by the Sinhala majority, a resounding vote of no-confidence by the Tamil and Muslim minorities and armed soldiers surrounding the hotel in which the main contender was temporarily residing. [TC]

Rajapakse’s commitment of reconciliation with the Tamil minority remains as empty as his long promised devolution

by Dushy Ranetunge

It was indeed a stunning victory, as it surprised everyone, including many of those who are in power who displayed great anxiety and frustration in their campaign, expecting a close result. [TC]

Tamils must become stakeholders and partners of Rajapakse administration and not clients or competitors of Sinhala nationalism

by Dayan Jayatilleke

The (geographic) periphery proved to be (politically) peripheral, while the road to power lay through the paddy fields and the provinces of the Sinhala heartland. Mahinda Rajapakse gave the lie to the notion that the minorities, especially the Tamil minority, held the key to the outcome of the election.[TC]

President's mantra of "peace through development" has been resoundingly rejected by all ethnic minorities

by Dr.Muttukrishna Sarvananthan Ph.D.

On the morning after the election result was announced I woke up to a stale old day. The winning margin of the election was too big to believe. [TC]

What Now for the TNA, the Tamil Diaspora and their Supporters?

By Gus Mathews

The Eleam war has turned full circle as the political machinations of the race for the Sri Lankan Presidency has demonstrated. General (Retired) Sarath Fonseka the ‘hammer of the Tamil tigers’ became the de-facto saviour of the aspirations that the Tamil Diaspora, the remnants of the Tamil tigers, and their proxy the TNA ever wanted in the Presidential election. [TC]

Protecting Democracy Post-Election: An end to political violence and revenge

by The Centre for Policy Alternatives

A series of recent events connected to the presidential election last week give rise to extremely serious concerns about the state of democracy in Sri Lanka today. [TC]

Election Results Procedure Change Leads to Suspicion

By R.M.B. Senanayake

I have had first-hand experience as a Presiding Officer, Counting Officer (Assistant Registering Officer) and as Returning Officer in past elections in Vavuniya, Nuwara Eliya, Matara, etc. The procedure then was for the counting centers to be set apart for each electorate. [TC]

World's first successful software/paper rigging of election done by govt charges Mangala Samaraweera

An Interview with Mandana Ismail Abeywickrema

SLFP (M) Wing Leader and Co-media Spokesperson for General Sarath Fonseka, Mangala Samaraweera charged that software/paper rigging finally changed an approximately 1.5 million vote victory for General Sarath Fonseka into a 1.8 million majority for President Rajapaksa. [TC]
 
When does second term of re-elected President Rajapakse begin?

by Nihal Jayawickrama

When does the President’s second term commence? Divergent views are now being expressed on this constitutional issue. It is reported that the consultative jurisdiction of the Supreme Court may be invoked on this matter. [TC]

Those who did not vote for President voted for Greater Liberal Democratic Agenda

By Ranga Jayasuriya

President Mahinda Rajapaksa belied the projections of many an observer, including this correspondent who guessed that the election would be a close call. [TC]
 
Need of the hour is a national discussion without rancour

by Milinda Moragoda

The reelection of President Rajapaksa with a historic mandate accounting for nearly 58% of the total votes cast presents a unique moment for Sri Lanka to capture the many opportunities for economic development which we have missed since Independence. [TC]

Full Text: Verdict of the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal on Sri Lanka

Hosted by The Irish School of Ecumenics, Trinity College Dublin, The School of Law and Government, Dublin City University National College of Art and Design, Dublin [TC] 

The Magic behind the Mahinda Rajapakse Victory

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Presidential Stakes 2010 came to an official end when Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake announced the winner in Sri Lanka’s sixth Presidential election.

Incumbent Executive President Mahinda Rajapakse registered a stunning victory by polling 6,015,934 votes(57.88%).Former Army commander retired General Sarath Fonseka, his chief challenger got 4,173,185 or 40.15% of the votes. [dbsj]

What NYTimes.com did not include in '31 places to visit' [TC]

Will India gain with Rajapaksa's win?

by K Venkataramanan

No country's role is more discussed and less understood in Sri Lanka than India's. [TC]

Behind Sri Lanka’s political infighting: US-China rivalry

BY Peter Symonds

In the wake of Tuesday’s presidential election in Sri Lanka, Colombo has become a hotbed of rumour and intrigue as the two factions of the ruling elite backing the winner, Mahinda Rajapakse, and the loser, General Sarath Fonseka, manoeuvre and position themselves for open political warfare. [TC]

Thai Poosam and the Tamil Frontier Spirit

By Dharman Dharmaratnam

Thai Poosam is a significant day for ethnic Tamils living in Malaysia, Mauritius, Reunion and Singapore. This year, it falls on Saturday, January 30. The holiday denotes the full moon of the month of Thai and is dedicated to the God Murukan or Skanda, also known as Seyon in the Sangam-era of Tamil literature. [TW]

Sri Lankan Police Raid Defeated Opposition Candidate’s Office

by Rogene Fisher

Sri Lanka’s quarter-century-long civil war may have ended, but there is no peace between the two rivals in Tuesday’s presidential contest. Police raided opposition candidate Sarath Fonseka’s campaign headquarters on Friday, seizing computer equipment and arresting 15 members of his staff. [TC]

Disgraceful treatment of Fonseka and his security personnel after election

By Shanie

Mahinda Rajapakse has won re-election to the Presidency of Sri Lanka. The margin of 1.8 million votes over Rajapakse’s nearest rival was a decisive one. [TC]

Sri Lankan government cracks down on opposition

By Sarath Kumara

After winning Tuesday’s election, President Mahinda Rajapakse has begun his second term with a widening crackdown on his political opponents.[TC]

End Harassment, Attacks on Journalists-HRW

The Sri Lankan government should immediately end its post-election harassment of media outlets and ensure protection of journalists from attack, Human Rights Watch said today. [TC]

January 22, 2010

Jan 24 - 30:

Sri Lanka Presidential Poll: A resounding but fractured verdict 

By D.B.S.Jeyaraj

The electoral verdict, stunning and conclusive on the whole, has some cracks in parts. As the President of the whole country, Mahinda Rajapaksa must take the initiative and reach out to those sections of the people who have been alienated in terms of ethnicity, class, and the urban-rural divide. [dbsj]

Igbo and Thamizhar: Biafra in Nigeria and Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka

by a Concerned Tamil

Rudyard Kipling said that someone who knows only England doesn’t know England: in order to understand one place and situation, England, one must know other countries, other histories. With this attitude, I draw attention to the Biafran War.

Rajapaksa’s Victory & After: Answers to questions put by national and international media

by Col. R. hariharan

When Mrs Indira Gandhi was Prime Minister she reacted strongly to America’s planned foray into Sri Lanka. China has already made an entry into Sri Lanka. As Sri Lanka is in a 1987-like situation now, do you expect Rajapaksa to slowly marginalise Indian influence in the island to accommodate the Chinese? [TC]

Video: When does President Rajapakse's second term begin?

There have been a number of confusing media reports after the results of the Presidential Election were announced on 27 January 2010 as to when the second term of Mahinda Rakapakse begins. [TC]

Activist apprehended due to information given by LTTE sources

by D.B. S. Jeyaraj

Subramaniam Sivakumar alias Rajan a top LTTE activist abroad was "arrested" in a South-eastern country & brought to Sri Lanka today (Jan 28). [TC]

The "Swan" has been Shot along with Truth, Democracy and Conscience

by Chackravarthy

“It has to be stated with much reluctance that the co-operation received from some of the candidates and their supporters in ensuring a peaceful, free and fair election during the two months period of the election campaign was much less than desired. It became necessary to issue directives and guidelines to prevent misuse of State resources and the State media. [TC]

A principled approach Necessary for constitutional Reform

By Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha

One of the themes that the common opposition made much of during the election campaign was the need to implement the 17th amendment immediately. In fact many of those without a political agenda also see this as a panacea for all ills. [TC]

President Rajapakse suggests overwhelming mandate makes war crimes inquiry unnecessary

A VICTORIOUS Mahinda Rajapakse has vowed to put tensions with Western critics behind him and transform his war-ravaged nation into a development and tourism hub after his landslide win in Sri Lanka's first post-conflict presidential poll [TC]

Sri Lanka North-East settlements likened to Robert Mugabe policies

Damien Kingsbury, chair in the school of international and political studies at Deakin University of Australia sees parallels with Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe in the new enforced settlements in Sri Lanka North-Easy by Sri Lanka government. [TC]

"I should have been the president. I am the people's president."- Fonseka

Charging widespread irregularities took place in the counting process and 1.4 million of his votes were misappropriated, General Sarath Fonseka is quoted as saying , "I should have been the president. I am the people's president," in an AFP report. [TC]

What the president’s re-election means for his sorely divided country

from THE ECONOMIST

HAD Mahinda Rajapaksa, Sri Lanka’s war-winning leader, lost his island-state’s presidential election on January 26th, it would have been described as a Churchillian defeat.

U.S. Government Statement on the Presidential Election in Sri Lanka

The United States congratulates Sri Lanka for the first nationwide election in decades and President Rajapaksa on his victory. [TC]

Opposition allegations of counting process needs more proof

by Steve Herman

The United States and India are congratulating Sri Lanka for carrying out a successful presidential election this week. [TC]

'This year's International Holocaust Remembrance Day is of special significance to Tamils'

International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Jan 27, 2010

The United States Tamil Political Action Council (USTPAC) joins the world humanitarian community in remembering and paying tribute to the victims of the Holocaust at the hands of Nazi Germany, honoring survivors and supporting the recognition of this day internationally. [TW]

“Why should I get involved in all these petty matters”- President Rajapaksa on the situation of Fonseka

from the twitter pages of Lydia Polgreen in Colombo, The New York Times

Said he was not stung by Tamil votes against him, only wanted them to participate in elex as a start to reconciliation. [TC]

Abuse of power makes travesty of democracy in Sri Lanka elections

by Ralph Michael

Sri Lanka’s presidential election should have been cause for celebration — the first since the defeat of the Tamil Tiger rebels in May, and the first in peacetime in almost three decades. [TC]

Letter to Commissioner of Elections to urgently address concerns voiced by voters [TC]

Fonseka rejects results

from the twitter pages of Lydia Polgreen in Colombo, The New York Times

Fonseka rejects results. Looks like a standoff [TC]

Post-mortem on presidential elections 2010: Please have your say…..

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The Presidential Elections held on January 26th 2010 has concluded. Though the results are not yet officially released at the time this is being written “unofficially” it does seem very clear who has won. [dbsj]

Sri Lanka presidential challenger says fears arrest

By Ranga Sirilal and C. Bryson Hull

COLOMBO (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's top opposition candidate said troops had surrounded his hotel on Wednesday, after polling in Sri Lanka's first post-war presidential election ended with the revelation that he was not a registered voteR [TC]

Mp3 Audio: Interview with Asanga Welikala over Sarath Fonseka not having a vote

Interview with Asanga Welikala, Senior Researcher at the Centre for Policy Alternatives over the confusion arising from key presidential candidate Sarath Fonseka not having a vote, and the confusion significantly fueled by State media that he is ineligible to be elected as President as a consequence: [TC]

Government authorities fail to address voter rights of IDPs and other Northern residents

26 January 2010: CMEV was informed that approximately 24,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) presently living in government run camps and with host families were also registered on the 2008 electoral register. [TC]

Low turn out in North-East, Fonseka not registered to vote

Tweet bundle from the twitter pages of The Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) and Lydia Polgreen of New York Times in Colombo: [TC]

Disturbances in Jaffna and identity, transport issues at Manik Farm deter turnout

CMEV received reports of multiple explosions in Nallur, Uduppidy, Manipay, Vaddukottai, Chavakachcheri and Tellipallai. [TC]

Provincial-wide update on Election Day violence and law breaking

Batticaloa District: Kalkudah Electroate: SLMC supporter Mr. Mohamad Ismail was attacked by a group of UPFA supporters at around 10:55 am about 20m away from the Oddamavadi Central College Polling Station (Polling Centre 69). [TC]

2010 Presidential Poll: Oh! God! What a Free and Fair election? Part II

Common opposition candidate General Sarath Fonseka speaking to Daily Mirror Online a short while ago said that he was fully qualified to contest the Presidential Elections although he could not cast his vote at the elections today. [TC]

Different elections, different locations: Countdown in Colombo and a new Boston Tea Party

by Rajan Philips

As Sri Lankans are anxiously getting ready to cast their votes in Tuesday’s presidential election that is turning more violent than ever before, the voters in Massachusetts have peacefully sent a shockwave through the American political establishment. It is countdown time in Colombo for Mahinda Rajapakse and Sarath Fonseka. [TC]

Video: Lives of many of the Tamils in Sri Lanka's north remain difficult [TC]

Three poems for Sri Lanka on presidential elections day

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

January 26th 2010 is upon us!

It’s the Day of decision for Sri Lanka as it faces yet another election to either re-elect or elect the most powerful person in the Country. [DBSJ]

I tell Tamils, there is no problem - I too speak Tamil - Mahinda Rajapakse

President Mahinda Rajapaksa answered questions put to him by Rajpal Abeynayake on Tuesday’s elections and a host of related issues, at President’s House in Kandy this week. We publish below the transcripts from that exchange. [TC]

2010 Presidential Poll: Oh! What a Free and Fair election?

By Chakravarthy

**The Colombo Magistrates court today refused to grant a search warrant requested by the Criminal Investigations Department to search UNP leader Ranil Wickremesighe’s office and the Biyagama press of Wijeya Newspapers, publishers of Daily Mirror [TC]

Mahinda gave Rs. 180 million to the LTTE through Basil, charges Tiran Alles

National organizer of the SLFP Mahajana Wing Tiran Alles says Basil Rajapaksa personally handed over, at his office, Rs. 180 million to the then LTTE financial controller Emil Kanthan to ensure that the people of the north refrained from voting at the 2005 presidential election. [TC]

The voter in the North-East, election politics and promises

by Nimmi Gowrinathan

On May 19, 2009 the Government of Sri Lanka announced that it had defeated the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), ending one of the longest civil wars in South Asia. [TC]

Fonseka factor and the creeping politicization of military in Sri Lanka

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Last year when speculation was rife about former Army commander Sarath Fonseka announcing his candidacy for the Presidential elections this columnist was among those who warned of adverse consequences befalling the Country as a result of this unprecedented move. [dbsj]

Mahinda's insolent message to Tamil speaking people

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

"Lakbima News" editor Rajpal Abeynayake asks President Rajapakse a serious question "What is the message you give Tamil speaking people"?. [TC]

Exhibit: Unpacking the complexities and liminality of the Tamil Community

Shanaathanan Thamotharampillai, a Tamil artist from Sri Lanka who is currently completing his PhD in art history at Jawaharlal Nerhu University, New Delhi. [TC]

100,000 Tamils still limbo in camps, families forced to take refuge on the roadside

Excerpts from report by Wayne Hay of AlJazeera

A journey north along the severely bombed A9 road reveals hundreds of families forced to take refuge on the roadside, finding shelter in the remains of someone else's home. [TC]

Presidential Elections, The Sinhala Mindset And The Future Of Sri Lanka

Prof. A. R. M. Imtiyaz

It is likely that who ever wins the ethnic problem will not be solved. [TC]

“Gramarajya”: The Utopian vision of Ukku Banda Wijekoon

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Three days from today(23rd) the nation will be going to the polls to elect the most powerful person in the Country.

Twenty-Three potential candidates handed in their nominations on December 17th 2009but with the Commissioner of Elections rejecting one there were only twenty-two in the fray. [dbsj]

Once Considered Walk Over this Election Could Well be Nemesis of Rajapakse

By Kshama Ranawana

Deeply divided Sri Lankan citizens go to the polls on Jan. 26 to vote in a president in its first major post-war electoral exercise. [TC]

Why I am voting for Sarath Fonseka

By Samanmalee Unanthenna

When rumours started circulating some months ago of the possibility of Sarath Fonseka being a Presidential candidate, I was horrified. [TC]

Electing the general as president would be a decidedly a risky adventure

by Atticus

It is said that large sections of the country —-people from different communities, religions, classes, regions, occupations and gender —-are supporting the General at the Presidential elections. [TC]

Pre dawn attack causes severe damage to house and vehicle of Secretary, SLFP Mahajana Wing

At approximately 4.50am this morning, an explosive device was thrown at the home of the Secretary and National Organizer of the SLFP Mahajana Wing Mr. Tiran Alles, located at Galpoththa Road, Nawala, resulting in severe damage to his vehicle and house. [TC]

35 Muslim Organizations Appeal to Make 2010 The Year of Return of Expelled Northern Muslims

As Sri Lankan Muslims civil society groups we are deeply concerned by the lack of urgency and recognition of the Northern Muslims’ right to return. [TC]

January 16, 2010

Jan 17 - 23:

Early Presidential election and unexpected developments

By Dr. S. Narapalasingam

The general view on the motive behind the decision to hold the Presidential election two years earlier than the scheduled end of the 6-year term of the incumbent President is to exploit the delight of the majority of the citizens over the military victory achieved in May 2009 that annihilated the ferocious Tamil Tigers. [TC]

'Tamils have won the hearts and sympathy of Canadians for their cause'

By Siva Sivapragasam

In an emotionally inspired speech, Jack Layton, President of the National Democratic Party had nothing but full of praise to the Canadian Tamils and feelings for the Tamil cause when he addressed the International Conference for the Tamil Quest for Democracy & Peace in Sri Lanka:Problems & Prospects. [MJ]

Report on election monitors' visit to Jaffna, Kilinochchi & Vavuniya, Jan 17- 19

CMEV met with residents of the area including those who had recently returned, internally displaced person (IDPs), civil society groups, agencies and government officials. [TC]

The Two Elections in 2010: End of History for the NE Tamils or, A Fresh Beginning?

By Jolly Somasundram

"War does not determine who is right: it just determines who is left," wrote Bertrand Russel. The NE Tamils (who include those from this region living elsewhere in the island), never had it so bad. [TC]

Why do Tamils in India hurl slippers at Lokubandara but Tamils in  Sri Lanka  garland Rajapakse and Fonseka?

By Somapala Gunadheera

Two news items appearing in the Island of Monday, January 11, 2010 took me by surprise. [TC]

Rajapakse and Fonseka were treated as respected guests by Tamils in Jaffna

By S.Udhaya

Mr Somapala Gunadheera raised an interesting issue in his piece titled Exclusivity of the Sri Lankan Tamil Psyche dated January 19, as to why the Tamils were "mellow, forgiving, tolerant" in their treatment of the two 'Cup' claimers. I must credit Mr Gunadheera for having asked such a fascinating question [TC]

Tamil émigrés follow the election campaign with jaundiced eyes

From the print edition of THE ECONOMIST

IN THE dingy back office of a Sri Lankan grocery shop in Harrow, north-west London, sales assistants pore over a Tamil newspaper, while a customer says he is going home to follow events on the internet. [TC]

Basil Rajapakse allows LTTE leader's mother and mother-in-law to leave the country

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

LTTE leader Prabhakaran's mother Mrs. Parvathy Veluppillai is currently warded at the Oorani hospital in her hometown of Valvettithurai. [TC]

Presidential contender put in the fray by Rajapakse regime quacks on divided loyalties

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

It's an open secret that Former UNP national list MP Sarath Kongahage was put up to contest presidential elections by the Rajapakse regime. [TC]

Fonseka has put aside the General's "Thoppiya" to assail a political Thoppigala

by Nalin Swaris

Even you Brutus? Most famous last words in history, due to its inclusion in William Shakespeare’s tragedy ‘Julius Caesar’. Before turning to Shakespeare, a few historical facts about Gaius Julius Caesar (100 BCE- 44 BCE). Julius’ surname became the title of emperors after him. [TC]

Government plot to harass Sarath Fonseka relatives continue

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Govt continues "games"with Sarath Fonseka's son in law Danuna Tillekeratne by getting Police to postpone inquiry after summoning him for one. [TC]

Rajapakse regime gets ready to derive propaganda mileage by "fixing" Sarath Fonseka & his son-in-law

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Rajapakse regime gets ready to do anti-opposition propaganda by "fixing" Sarath Fonseka & his son-in-law on charges of alleged corruption [TC]

Canadian Tamil Community Donates for Haiti Disaster Relief

By Siva Sivapragasam

The funds collected will be channeled through Global Medic, an international organization of repute and recognition for medical assistance and healthcare services. [TC]

"No Blood for Panties," Boycott Sri Lanka Releases Second Video

Boycott Sri Lanka Releases Second Video in Series "No Blood for Panties"; innovative marketing strategy proves popular, effective: [TC]

"Day after the election there will no longer be any concern for the Tamil people"

"There is really no fundamental choice between General Fonseka and Rajapakse because both were instrumental in launching this military offensive against the Tamil community," says Tasha Manoranjan in a report by Shaun Tandon of AFP datelined from Washington on Jan 17, 2010: [TC]

YATV Video: Jaffna via the A9, election and minority votes

A 7.10 minute telecast featuring A9, IDPs seeking shelter along the road and interviews with few Jaffna residents at the market. [TC]

UNP activist beaten to death by supporters of government minister in Kurunegala

According to Mr. Manjula Bandara (son of Member of Parliament and UNP Organizer for Wariyapola Ms. Amara Piyaseeli), between 12.30am and 1.00am this morning, Mr. Dhammika Herath (also known as Manju) was beaten to death by supporters of Minister of Rural Industries & Self-Employment Promotion S.B. Navinne. [TC]

Short notes on a sojourn in Sri Lanka

by R.M.M

Mahinda Rajapakse maybe corrupt but a lot of the hearsay foolish talk here in Colombo is just that. [TC]

Experiences make regime change the critical question for the minorities

An Appeal by a Collective of Tamil Professionals

The vote is a valuable right and we call upon Tamils, Muslims and all minorities to exercise it without doubt or hesitation on the 26th of January.[TC]

Both Pirapaharan and Rajapakse are propaganda masters and cardboard heroes

by Dr.Muttukrishna Sarvananthan

The 30-year battle against terrorism has turned into a vicious battle for the spoils-of-war in recent times. This post-war phenomenon does not augur well for the people of Sri Lanka.[TC]

"Keep on Moving": In Remembrance of Dr. Martin Luther King

Masses around the globe fighting for freedom, liberty and / or human dignity liken Dr. Martin Luther King's message to their own struggles. And Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech is looked upon by many to identify with King's fight for equality. [TC]

AlJazeera Video: Military rule not new for Tamils

As campaigning heats up ahead of Sri Lanka's presidential elections, the two main candidates are competing for support from the Tamil community. [TC]

How "exceptionalism" relates to race, racism and racists

The following is apropos an interview with Mr A. Sivanandan, published in New Left Review (London, Nov-Dec 2009 issue, pages 79-98) under the caption ‘An Island Tragedy: Buddhist ethnic cleansing in Sri Lanka’. [TC]

Sri Lanka under Rajapakse regime becoming feudal kingdom with constitutional veneer

By Rohan Samarajiva Ph.D

The events of the past few months (and indeed the past few years) in Sri Lanka have puzzled me. The President and his coterie are flagrantly violating the Constitution and laws. That is shocking, but what is more shocking is the casual acceptance of this behaviour by all concerned [TC]

Did Sampanthan Tell Newspaper about Fonseka Agreeing to Re-merge North and East?

By Mandana Ismail Abeywickrema

The credibility of the controversial story on the ‘conditional support’ extended by the TNA to common presidential candidate General Sarath Fonseka quoting R. Sampanthan published in the Sunday Lankadeepa newspaper is now at stake with the sudden resignation of the journalist who wrote the story. [TC]

By ways and means of "rigging" the presidential election

by Kelley Senanayake

The common opposition candidate, General Sarath Fonseka has categorically stated at several recent election rallies that he will ensure that the election on January 26 will not be rigged by the government. [TC]
Douglas Devananda has shown it is possible to be both Tamil Nationalist and Integrationist

by Dayan Jayatilleka

Douglas Devananda once likened Tamil nationalism to cholesterol, saying just as there is good and bad cholesterol, there is good and bad Tamil nationalism, and just as you need good cholesterol, you need the good Tamil nationalism.[TC]

Ranil Wickremasinghe Speaks Out on Current Situation

An Interview by Rajpal Abeynayake

The General prepared his programmes approved by all the parties backing him at that time. Now the numbers have been added on. Subsequently General released it (the programme) in Jaffna. Then Mr. Sambanthan wanted to meet with him. [TC]

Voting for Fonseka:"When you are in the Frying Pan You have to Jump"

by Rohini Hensman

If we were to ask, ‘Is this a good time for a presidential election?’ the answer would have to be ‘No’. At a time when so many urgent tasks are pending - not least that of rebuilding the war-ravaged areas of the country and resettling lakhs of IDPs in proper homes with proper facilities - such colossal expenditure on a premature election could be seen as criminally irresponsible. [TC]

Dublin Tribunal finds against Sri Lanka on charges of War Crimes

In Dublin today, 16th January, at 2.00pm the Peoples' Tribunal Chairman Francois Houtart read the preliminary findings of the Peoples' Tribunal on the war in Sri Lanka and its aftermath. There were four findings: [TC]

Poll violence in Puttalam claims life of UPFA supporter

According to North Western Provincial Councilor Mr. Sanath Nishantha Perera (UPFA), at 3.50pm, UNP supporters had shot at UPFA supporters in front of the UNP party office located in front of the Minnas Private Hospital, Madurankuliya, Puttalam District, resulting in the death of UPFA supporter Mr. Saman Kumara of Thonigala, Anamaduwa. [TC]

The political fight between the President and the General

By Ranga Welaratne

I visited my beloved country during the recent festive season, the land of my forefathers, where due to my extended sojourn overseas, I no longer have the right to vote. [TC]

Philip Alston wants credible, independent investigation by Sri Lanka

An Interview with Namini Wijedasa

UN Special Rapporteur for Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions Philip Alston raised a hornet’s nest recently by resurrecting the controversial Channel 4 ‘execution’ video and deeming it to be authentic on the basis of a report produced by three independent experts. [TC]

Election related violence in North, East and Uva provinces

According to UNP District Secretary for Polonnaruwa Mr. S.A.M. Wickramasinghe, Captain R.D.A. Ranaweera of the 8th Vijayabha Regiment of the Sri Lanka Army, Palali, was arrested yesterday at 4.30pm by the Military Police (4th CCMP) for influencing voters in favour of General Sarath Fonseka. [TC]

In Pictures: Illegal cutout displays using State resources

Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV), Colombo has released few pictures showing misappropriation of State resources to display cutouts and banners in the run up to the Presidential Elections. [TC]

All Citizens must vote at Presidential Elections and influence result

By Dr.A.C.Visvalingam

Our Constitution makes it clear that the People are sovereign and that their sovereignty is inalienable. However, for practical reasons, the Constitution provides for the legislative power of the People to be exercised by Parliament, consisting mostly of elected representatives, and, in respect of certain specific situations, directly by the People at a Referendum. [TC]

Presidential Election is re-shaping political forces that existed before the war

By Dayapala Thiranagama

The Presidential election battle is gathering momentum with incredible speed. Defections and pledges of support to Sarath Fonseka (SF) have injected some nervousness for the Mahinda Rajapaksa (MR) campaign. [TC]

Sri Lanka east coast is best left to fishermen while the wounds of civil war heal

Gill Charlton of The Daily Telegraph UK sees that it is too soon for tourism in Sri Lanka's east coast: [TC]

Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga has given astonishing media interview

by Mangala Samaraweera

In a frankly scandalous turn of events, Secretary to the President and the country’s top public servant Lalith Weeratunge today made the astonishing proclamation in a newspaper interview that the Sri Lankan government ceased using heavy weapons against the LTTE in April 2009 at the request of the Indian government, in order to help the re-election bid of India’s ruling Congress Party. [TC]

January 08, 2010

Jan 10-16

Rajapakse Vs Fonseka: Not a one horse race, but a contest

By Rajan Philips

This election was supposed to be a one horse race for Mahinda Rajapakse. Now it is a contest. Nobody can yet say that Mahinda Rajapakse is going to lose; nor can anyone now say that Sarath Fonseka is not going to win. [TC]

Sri Lanka-Tamil Vote and the Presidential Elections

By Siva Sivapragasam 

A former Sri Lankan High Court Judge and a well-respected Tamil and Religious scholar Justice Wigneswaran in his interview to a leading Tamil Newspaper in Sri Lanka on the forthcoming Presidential Elections has stated that the Tamils should exercise their democratic right of voting and not boycott the elections as they did last time. [MJ]

Rajapakse and Fonseka election promises mean nothing to the Tamils

by Dushy Ranetunge

During a previous election many in Colombo and the affluent classes were overconfident of a UNP victory. At the time there was a massive disjoint between the perceptions in Colombo and those in the country. Rajapakse tapped into these rural aspirations, and Prabakaran assisted by excluding the Tamil vote. The rest was history. [TC]

Why the minority communities are rallying around Sarath Fonseka

by Leela Issac

The moment the TNA announced its support for the opposition presidential candidate, General Sarath Fonseka, the ruling party and the forces that back President Mahinda Rajapakse have begun to smell an international conspiracy with the help of the LTTE to destabilize and divide Sri Lanka.[TC]

Three distinguished Sri Lankans write to Rajapakse and Fonseka about conduct of elections

by Arjuna Aluwihare, Jayantha Dhanapala and Chandra Jayaratne

This Presidential election is taking place at a time when we are free of the scourge of armed conflict––thanks to you and the team of which you as President and also General Fonseka were vitally important members. The contents of this note are for the attention of both of you please [TC]

Dilemma facing the nation at presidential poll is how to choose the lesser of two evils

by Senerath Ambepitiya

After emerging victorious in a 30-year war Sri Lanka was heading for a bright new era. At least so the Sri Lankans thought. [TC]

Ven. Batharamulle Seelaratana Thera attains enlightenment under Araliya trees

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Lord Buddha was enlightened under the Bodhi tree. A Sri Lankan claiming to be his disciple has received enlightenment under Araliya trees! [TC]

How preference votes are counted in a Presidential Election

By Suriya Wickremasinghe

This briefing paper responds to questions received by CRM about the counting of preferences at the Presidential election A decision how to vote, or whether to vote at all, should be an informed decision. [TC]

Presidential Poll 2010: Breaking the Piper’s Charm

by Chinthaka Senaratne

Political commentators seem to have run out of superlatives when attempting to describe the leadership of President Mahinda Rajapakse. [TC]

The spiritual theme of Thai Pongal

By Gamini Jayasinghe

‘Thai’ is the first and auspicious month in the Tamil almanac and ‘Pongal’ is a dish of a sweet concoction of rice, dhal or a split pulse, jaggery and milk. Thai Pongal is therefore the feast in the month of Thai. [TC]

There is a minority question with multiple configurations that plagues our existence in every way

by Sivamohan Sumathy

Recently, I was stopped at this checkpoint just outside Colombo. It was about 8 pm and I was in a three wheeler. Perusing my identity document, the security person queried in Sinhala: ‘Are you Tamil?’ Taken aback by this query, I paused a little before saying ‘yes.’[TC]

Tissainayagam should be released unconditionally-Amnesty International

Maya's tweet to NY Times: "Get your priorities straight"

tweet bundle from the twitter pages of maya arulpragasam M.I.A

Here is the lush coastline they are talking about [TC]

The first murder of Presidential Election 2010 campaign

Interview with Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, Co-Convenor of the Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) over the murder of a political party supporter in Tangalla today and the lobbing of a hand grenade in Batticaloa. [TC]

Tissainayagam the First Journalist Convicted Under PTA Granted Bail by Appeal Court

by S.S. Selvanayagam

The Court of Appeal yesterday (11) granted bail to Senior Journalist J.S.Tissainayagam pending his appeal against his conviction and sentence by the High Court under Prevention of Terrorist Act. [TC]

Rift between two Sri Lanka contenders and the possibility of reforms

by Chris Patten

Pity the poor Sri Lankan voter. As presidential elections loom on Jan. 26, the public is faced with a choice between two candidates who openly accuse each other of war crimes. [TC]

Slow swing in favour of 'Swan' and the perturb at President's campaign

by Col. R. Hariharan

For President Mahinda Rajapaksa last week was not a happy one. Media predictions show a slow swing in favour of the common opposition candidate General Sarath Fonseka in the January 26 presidential poll. [TC]

Concern grows over IDP voting rights

by IRIN News

Tens of thousands of internally displaced people (IDPs) and new returnees in Sri Lanka may miss out on voting in this month's presidential election on 26 January. [TC]

Giving Sri Lanka green light to fight “war on terror” regrettable -International Crisis Group

International actors need to press for accountability for abuses by both sides during the war as well as challenge the government’s post-war policies. [TC]

In Pictures: Funeral of Thiruvengadam Veluppillai [TC]

Lasantha's wife Sonali writes to Mahinda about inquiry into husbands murder [TC]

Is TNA decision to support Sarath Fonseka revenge politics or separatist politics?

by Sumanasiri Liyanage

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) couple of days ago decided to back Sarath Fonseka at the forthcoming presidential election. Although it was said that the decision was unanimous it seems that the three-way split of the TNA remains unrepaired. [TC]

‘You are the proud owners of your beloved motherland,’ President tells in Jaffna

By Sandun A. Jayasekera

President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday reiterated in Jaffna that he would expedite the re-settlement process of the nearly 300,000 IDPs in the North and East and provide them with necessary facilities and resources so that they could stand on their own feet.

'Sarath Fonseka relying on "Triple A", Mahinda Govt resorts to communalism'

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Sarath Fonseka relying mostly on people from the "Triple A" for campaign. AAA stands for Army personnel, Ananda Collegians & Ambalangoda people [TC]

Family members of Mahindas cronies preparing to flee Country from Jan 20th

By Dushy Ranetunge

Travel agents in Colombo are reporting brisk trading and high demand for airline tickets from the 20th of January onwards for departures with peak demand on Election Day when not ”the battle of the blues”, but the battle of the “war hero’s” takes place. [TC]

Rajapakse to crack down on corruption

by Dushy Ranetunge

One would have thought that extortion was the domain of the LTTE, but incredibly it has been revealed that a notorious minister of the Rajapakse government has been engaging in extortion. [TC]

Tamils: A Heroic Nation That Has Sacrificed Enormously For National Survival

by Dr.Vickramabahu Karunaratne

On 16 April 2007 I asked the UNP MP Mano Ganesan whether he agreed with the statement made by UNP leader, Ranil Wickremesinge about Janaka Perera. [TC]

Tamils Being Wooed on the Basis of Elementary Liberties being fully Restored

by Namini Wijedasa

Free movement of all persons without being impeded by security and police; areas of civilian activity to be free of weapons; security forces to be stationed only at strategic locations; [TC]
Praba's siblings decline President's offer

by D.B.S, Jeyaraj

Prabhakaran's three siblings abroad guaranteed safety by President Rajapakse to attend their father's funeral in Valvettithurai [TC]

Prabhakaran, Veluppillai and the father-son relationship

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Veluppillai Prabhakaran’s father Thiruvengadam Veluppillai breathed his last on Wednesday January 6th night. The 86 year old retired government servant’s birthday was on January 10th. [dbsj]

Pictorial: A Sri Lankan Underdog Battles Global Tea Giants

by Vikas Bajaj

Merrill J. Fernando’s eyes lit up one recent morning when his son Dilhan handed him a box of Twinings Pure White Tea. He quickly ripped open a tea bag and spilled its contents onto a piece of paper. [TC]

January 02, 2010

Jan 3 - 9:

Focus on the multifaceted Rights issue

By Dr. S. Narapalasingam

In his Kanchana Abhayapala Memorial lecture, JC Weliamuna emphasized the fact, “human rights regime does not operate in a vacuum and one cannot draw an assumption that human rights will find its legitimate space in a society, because it is influenced by various other external factors such as corruption”. [TC

Lasantha: The Courageous Editor who Fearlessly spoke Truth to Power

Remembering “Lassieboy” on the first anniversary of his death

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

It was on January 8th last year that Lasantha Wickrematunga the Editor of “The Sunday Leader” in Colombo was killed by “unknown” assassins. He was my colleague, editor, friend and above all a kindred soul. [dbsj]

Unbowed and unafraid to the very end

By Marianne David

One year ago on this day, Editor-in-Chief of The Sunday Leader Lasantha Wickrematunge was gunned down in broad daylight, in a high security zone to boot.

Remembering Lasantha

By Dilrukshi Handunnetti

These are politically-charged weeks, with a presidential election just three weeks away. These politically intense days would have excited Lasantha to no end. [TC]

"Tamil Solidarity"wants Tamils to vote for Siritunge Jayasuriya in Presidential polls

The Tamil Solidarity (TS) steering committee met on Friday 18 December 2009 to discuss future plans. One of the most important items on the agenda was the question of what the TS position on the upcoming presidential election should be. [TC]

Media Organizations in Lanka Present Agenda to Presidential Candidates

The undersigned media organisations hereby present the following agenda of reform to the presidential candidates (2010) for their unequivocal commitment to implement the same; [TC]

Sri Lanka execution video 'authentic' - UN Envoy

Video apparently showing extra-judicial killings by Sri Lankan troops is most probably genuine, a UN envoy has said. [TC]

Media Organizations in Lanka Present Agenda to Presidential Candidates

The undersigned media organisations hereby present the following agenda of reform to the presidential candidates (2010) for their unequivocal commitment to implement the same; [TC]

Thiruvengadam Velupillai, LTTE leader Prabhakaran's father passes away

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

LTTE leader Prabhakaran's father Thiruvengadam Velupillai has passed away. He and his wife were being held under "special" military custody [TC]

Presidential Election 2010 - Shakespearan Drama with a Sri Lankan Flavour

By Jolly Somasundram

In the aftermath of the Mullaitivu triumph, the rewind button set to Shakespeare could draw attention to a collage of the Bard's relevant insights. [TC]

These  candidates are largely to blame for destroying our people

by Suren Surendran

As far as we Tamils are concerned, this is not the right time for any sort of election, regardless of who the candidates are.

Tamils throw weight behind general who crushed them

By Andrew Buncombe

Seven months after Sri Lanka's long and bitter civil war was brought to an end by a withering government assault, the political coalition that supported the Tamil Tigers has thrown its support behind the former army chief who crushed them. [TC]

'Sri Lanka may not be big enough for both President Rajapaksa and Gen. Sarath Fonseka'

by Catherine Philp

A few weeks ago Sri Lanka’s upcoming general election looked like a walk in the park for the incumbent, President Rajapaksa, who was riding high on the kudos of ending the country's long-running civil war. [TC]

Tamil National Alliance announces support for Sarath Fonseka

The Tamil National Alliance that has 22 members of Parliament officially stated that it would extend support to common opposition candidate Gen.Sarath Fonseka at the forthcoming Presidential elections. [TC]

Killing Rajiv Gandhi: Dhanu's sacrificial metamorphosis in death?

by Michael Roberts

Journals use Abstracts in order to provide readers with a distillation of the argument in an article. Where theoretical concepts are deployed, this presupposes that readers have some familiarity with the literature. [TC]

HRW urges Australia and Asian counties for compassion towards refugees

At the dawn of a new decade, Asian governments should commit themselves not only to the nonrefoulement principle, but also to the idea that granting asylum is a humanitarian act that should be entirely divorced from political relations between states, writes Bill Frelick, Refugee Policy director at Human Rights Watch, in an OPED article appearing in the New York Times of Jan 2, 2010: [TC]

Anniversary of terror attack on MTV-MBC Radio/TV Station

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Today January 6th is the first anniversary of a “terror” attack on the MTV-MBC Radio/TV station in suburban Colombo. None of the culprits responsible for the attack have been apprehended let alone prosecuted despite a whole year passing by. [dbsj]

Whenever Tamils boycott polls they end up worse than before

by Dr A.C.Visvalingam

Our Constitution makes it clear that the People are sovereign and that their sovereignty is inalienable. [TC]

Mahinda compelled to seek Tamil votes after Sarath entered fray

By Upul Joseph Fernando

Since the Sri Lanka (SL) war began in 1983 , SL’s political agendas have been dictated not according to the wishes of the politicians or the astrological calculations, but by the requirements of Velupillai Prabhakaran in the Wanni jungles. Not only the SL’s politics but even the election of a President of SL was determined by Prabhakaran. [TC]

Tamil - speaking people are 56% in Colombo but administration is Sinhala alone

by M.I. M. Mohideen

Soon after defeating LTTE terrorism in May 2009, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that there are no minority or majority communities in Sri Lanka today.[TC]

Entry of Gen.Fonseka will lead to militarization of politics and politicisation of Military

by Dew Gunasekara

It is with a sense of relief, emotion and pleasure that I am addressing the comrades and friends today after a lapse of almost 27 years since 1982 Presidential Election when I visited the North in support of Hector Kobbekaduwa, S.L.F.P. Presidential candidate. [TC]

Oppressive Govt is worse than a tiger said Confucius

by M.S.Shah Jahan

Liu Shihui, a human right activist and a lawyer with a law firm in China was suddenly grabbed by the neck from behind while he was hiking with friends on Baiyun Mountain last October.[TC]

Corruption charges raised against Fonseka in parliament

By Wijitha Nakkawita and Irangika Range

The JVP has now become the defender of corruption. The sacrosanct gentlemen of that party were carrying on their shoulders a Presidential Candidate who had used his position to award tenders for the purchase of equipment from a company owned by his son-in-law, JNP leader Wimal Weerawansa said in Parliament yesterday. [TC]

Negative Attributes of  Mahinda Rajapaksa: Candid assessment of Presidential Candidates – 1

By Rajpal Abeynayake

Yes, we have to talk about the Fonseka candidacy, but before that we have to get to grips with the Rajapaksa incumbency [TC]

Programme of Immediate Relief Measures for war affected persons & Areas for Peace

Full Text of "Programme of Immediate Relief Measures for War Affected Persons & Areas for Peace", handed over to Hon. R. Sampanthan, Leader of the TNA by General Sarath Fonseka common Presidential Candidate at his campaign headquarters on Jan 4, 2010: [TC]

Video: Sex Un-Sells: "No blood for Panties" video urges boycott of products made in Sri Lanka

Boycott Sri Lanka released a shockingly innovative No Blood For Panties video series today. No Blood For Panties is part of a campaign to boycott products made in Sri Lanka in an effort to end the suffering of Sri Lanka's Tamils. [TC]

Attention: Presidential Candidates! The Case for a 'Media Commission'

By Amrit Muttukumaru

In the final analysis, it is the media that can give true meaning to democratic values and ensure 'good governance' not withstanding the existence of even an enlightened constitution and a 'Right to Information' law (which we do not have!). [TC]

The Promises of Fonny: Ain't this all Funny and Phoney ?

by Kusal Perera

"Once normal civil administration is established, committees will be set up in each district. These committees will comprise representatives, including a nominee of the President, Divisional Secretaries, other officials, MPs and/or their representatives, representatives of local authorities, judicial officers, commanders of security forces, and police and civic representatives. [TC]

CMEV deeply concerned by escalation of violence and the violation of election laws

Since the gazette notification for the Presidential Election issued on 23rd November 2009 up to 01st January 2010, CMEV has recorded a confirmed cumulative total of 103 incidents of election related violence. [TC]

Sunday Leader’s editor defends controversial Fonseka interview

by B. Muralidhar Reddy

Editor of Sri Lanka’s English weekly, Sunday Leader, who carried the controversial December 13 interview with the commander turned politician Sarath Fonseka, added a new dimension today with her insistence that she had quoted the retired General `perfectly accurately’. [TC]

Why Mahinda Rajapakse and Sarath Silva Became Enemies An interview with the Former Chief Justice

By Namini Wijedasa

There is no serious flaw in the amendment as such. It was an amendment that everybody agreed with [TC]

Sri Lanka needs political solution and civil society reconciliation

by Chaminda Weerawardhana

These two are like rails of a rail-track - and the SL train cannot move forward unless the track is in order (its absence explains the 62-year stagnation, and especially the post May 2009 stagnation). [TC]

Feedback: Citizens speaking up on the polls from all over Sri Lanka

by Dushy Ranetunge

A Traffic Police officer near the Benthara River ; “The law must be applied to all equally. We stopped a container and found it full of Billboards in support of the President. [TC]

Gwynne Dyer holds up a mirror on Sri Lanka's future

by Dayan Jayatilleka

It usually takes an objective, empathetic outsider to hold up a mirror before us, reflecting our achievements and our failures. [TC]

Politics of election has exposed a giant black hole at the centre of Tamil politics

by Kumar David

The animation of election politics has exposed a giant black hole at the centre of Tamil politics. Understandably the destruction of the LTTE created a vacuum that will take time to repair.[TC]

Sri Lanka in 2010: An Assessment of trends in  politics, international affairs and human rights

By Col R Hariharan

How is the year 2010 going to be for Sri Lanka? What are the likely trends? [TC]

JR Jayewardene and the caste factor in Sinhala politics

by Nalin Fernando

On Royal-Thomian cricket match morning in March 1996 I got a telephone call from someone very close to President J.R. Jayewardene saying that the Old Man, who was suffering from a bad head cold, was insisting on going to the Big Match that day against medical advice. [TC]

Promises Galore by Gen. Fonseka  wooing Tamil voters in Jaffna

In an ironic twist of fate Sarath Fonseka the man who refused to dismantle high security zones in Jaffna during the Oslo -brokered ceasefire in 2002 performed a neat somersault in 2010 by promising to remove high - security zones in North if elected President [TC]

Sarath Fonseka makes assurances to voters in Jaffna

Presidential contender Sarath Fonseka has said Ariyalai, Muhamalai, Jaffna and Tanangkillappu High Security Zones (HSZs) will be taken off immediately and emergency rule abolished when elected, while speaking to the public in Jaffna today. [TC]

Student Victims of Embilipitiya and Trincomalee:How the State Obstructs Justice

by Dr.Rajan Hoole

Are we living under a State so crisis-prone that reordering it to represent all sections and provide justice for all, has become an insuperable task?[TC]

The Second Philippic: Presidential Election and Political Possibilities

by Rajan Philips

In a witty word play Dayan Jayatilleka has called my article last week, a philippic. So I offer a second Sri Lankan philippic – on the presidential election and political possibilities. [TC]

Pacha Gaha-The charge of the Rumour Brigade

By Lucien Rajakarunanayake

The Pacha Gaha providing abundant shelter at the Galle town was a landmark known for the mastery of the lie [TC]

Dayan’s Powerful Argument on Contemporary Relevance of Castro or Fidelismo [TC]