Feb 27 - Mar 5:

US Senate Resolution calling for an Independent International Investigation in Sri Lanka passes unopposed

The US Senate on March 1, 2011 unanimously passed Senate Resolution 84, calling for an "independent international accountability mechanism to look into reports of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other human rights violations committed by both sides during and after the war in Sri Lanka and to make recommendations regarding accountability." [TC]

Opening of American Corner Builds on Hope and Tradition in Jaffna

by Melissa Coulter and Jeffrey Anderson

 

We recently traveled to Jaffna with Ambassador Patricia Butenis, USAID Director Jim Bednar, and other Embassy staff for the opening of our new American Corner on January 24. [TC]

'Government not paying enough attention to facilitate the return process of Muslim IDPs'

by IRIN News

COLOMBO, 3 March 2011 (IRIN) - The government of Sri Lanka has renewed its pledge to resettle Muslims evicted more than two decades ago from the war-affected north. [TC]

'Sivarathri--the spiritual night of Lord Shiva

by Dushiyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai

Mahasivarathri (“great night of Lord Shiva”) is celebrated on March 2nd this year - 2011; it always falls on the fourteenth day of the lunar fortnight. Mahasivarathri is considered the most important day for the devotees of Lord Shiva, and there are special celebrations at Sivan temples. [HA- Pictorial on Sivarathri ~ first published in March 2008]

The Need to Address Persistent Impunity for Violations and Abuses of International Human Rights and Humanitarian Laws - Amnesty Int'l

Amnesty International written statement to the sixteenth session of the Human Rights Council (28 February – 25 March 2011) [TC]

Achieving national reconciliation essential to truly realize all the promise and positive things going for Sri Lanka - Asst. Sec. Robert Blake

Full Text of Interview: AFP - Amb. Robert Blake, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs via DVC with Washington, DC

February 28, 2011

QUESTION: Basically what I was seeing if we can discuss with you is essentially after the end of the conflict in Sri Lanka how you kind of place U.S.-Sri Lankan relations now, particularly in the post-war, but not necessarily post-conflict? But how do you sort of see the situation since you left Colombo? [TC]

Attacks on fishermen has given ordinary Indians glimpse of the lack of accountability of Sri Lanka security forces - HRW

Sri Lanka attacks on fishermen are a wake-up call to India

by Meenakshi Ganguly

ON JANUARY 22, the Sri Lankan Navy intercepted an Indian fishing boat from Tamil Nadu. Two fishermen jumped into the sea, but 28year-old Jayakumar stayed on his boat. [TC]

Intrusion of Indian fishermen in SL waters is a "Fishy sort of tale"

by V.Sudarshan

Every night the radar systems in Sri Lanka pick up the presence of Indian trawlers off its coastline. Sometimes our boats go as far south as Trincomalee. [TC]

President Rajapaksa's love for  the children of Sri Lanka

by Bandula Jayasekara

President Mahinda Rajapaksa starts his day very early. All his days are very busy and his meetings and other engagements go on till late. [TC]

Non-violent direct action campaign begins in Jaffna

50th Anniversary of 1961 Tamil Satyagraha-2

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The Throne Speech outlining the policies and plans of the new Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Government of Prime Minister Sirima Bandaranaike was delivered on August 12th 1960. [DBSJ]

Accountability for Violations of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) in Counterinsurgency: The Case of Sri Lanka 

By The Program on Humanitarian Policy and Conflict Research (HPCR) at Harvard University

This Live Seminar examined mechanisms and strategies to promote accountability for IHL violations committed during counterinsurgencies, focusing on the case of Sri Lanka. [TC]

Is dual citizenship being discontinued for all to avoid war crimes chages for some?

by Ranga Jayasuriya

Some key positions of this government have been filled by dual citizens. Gotabaya Rajapaksa - the powerful Defence Secretary is a dual citizen of Sri Lanka and the USA. [TC]

Don't continue to scratch a wound that Sri Lanka is desperately trying to heal

by Palitha Kohona

(Text of a recent speech at Harvard University,USA by Ambassador Dr. Palitha T.B. Kohona, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, New York ) [TC]

Parallels between the Gaddafis of Libya and the Rajapaksas of Medamulana

By Mangala Samaraweera, M.P.

It is with great alarm that the peace loving people of the civilised world witness the despotic regime of Muammar Gaddafi killing his own people, using heavy weapons and even fighter aircraft to bomb civilian targets in a desperate attempt to retain power. [TC]

Tyrants and Their Families: Gaddafis and Rajapaksas.

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

“Muammar is leader of the revolution until the end of time…. When they (the protestors) are caught they will beg for mercy, but we will not be merciful.” — Muammar Gaddafi (Address to the Nation – 22.2.2011) [TC]

Sri Lankan Muslims: between ethno-nationalism and the global ummah

by DENNIS B. MCGILVRAY

In addition, during the past decade a sharp internal conflict has arisen within the Sri Lankan Muslim community between locally popular Sufi sheiks and the followers of hostile Islamic reformist movements energised by ideas and resources from the global ummah, or world community of Muslims. [TC]

Why The Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi (TNA) could not expel Amparai district MP Piyasena

By Ruana Rajepakse

For the past eighteen years parliamentary political parties have had a zero success rate in expelling from their parties Members of Parliament who cross over or fail to obey the party whip when voting in Parliament. [TC]

Colombo cannot be made "Garden City of Asia" without gardens

by Gamini Weerakoon

A recent report of the Economist Intelligence Unit of the 168-year-old Economist magazine would have rudely shattered the dreams of those visionaries of making Sri Lanka the ‘Asian Miracle’ with its capital, Colombo, as the ‘Garden City of Asia’ [TC]

Sri Lankan Foreign Service: Beating the “Deer Skin” at Home?

By Bandu de Silva

It looks as if all Pundits have spoken their mind on the recent performance of the Foreign Service and there is nothing more left to be said. [TC]

'Cast a VOTE for a WOMAN' - Seeking Increased representation of women through upcoming local polls

By Dushiyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai

We will destroy the idiocy
Of denigrating womanhood!”
~ Mahakavi Subramaniya Bharathiyaar, (11 December 1882 ~11 September 1921), (Tamil Poet, Reformer and Freedom Fighter who supported the women and their rights) [TC]