Sri Lanka Brief


  • ‘complete destruction’ seen by Moon

    The UN Secretary General had told the diplomats that he saw a scene of “complete destruction”, when he flew over the former “no-fire zone” in Sri Lanka. He described the conditions of Manik Farm refugee camp as worse than anything he had ever seen before, reveals a US diplomatic cable released by Wikileaks. Sataellite images […]

  • Int’l dispute: Private sector expresses concern

    Dianne SilvaThe private sector is concerned that the dispute on accountability issues between the government and the international community would lead to grave consequences for Sri Lanka’s industrial sector.These fears are expressed in the ‘Sri Lanka Private Sector Assessment of the Panel of Experts Advisory Report to the UN Secretary General’. “The Sri Lankan private […]

  • President shown photos of shelling civilians Read more >

    President shown photos of shelling civilians

    President shown photos of shelling civilians  ‘The Foreign Minister insisted that satellite images did not provide information needed to determine the source of fire,’ says the US embassy cable  US diplomats in Sri Lanka have shown satellite images of damage by shelling in “safe zone” even after the government announced ending heavy artillery and aerial […]

  • In the assassin’s mind

    ‘Satanic Force’ contained over 1,000 names of women raped, men butchered by IPKF Jaya Menon, Material Objects (MO) 124 and 125 are now just piles of paper gathering dust in a court vault. But they helped enlist an army of fighters, and assassins, for the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. ‘Satanic Force’, two large volumes […]

  • Rajapaksa comes down heavily on those demanding accountability

    Some countries are providing a “safe haven” to “theoreticians of terror in Sri Lanka”Coming down heavily on countries that demanded accountability for the civilian deaths in the last stages of the Eelam war IV in early 2009, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that for most of those who demand accountability, it was only a […]

  • Donors knew of shelling civilians

    International donors were aware of artillery attacks on Tamil civilians by the Sri Lanka military in the last stages of the war against Tamil Tigers, according to recent Wikileaks revelations. However, donor nations have stopped short of making their knowledge public. The international co-chairs in a meeting held on 05 March 2009 was told by […]

  • Most allegations against Sri Lankan Army ‘nonsense’

    Rajapaksa adviser says majority of the soldiers behaved impeccably. Sri Lanka can initiate inquiries into allegations that have been levelled against its Army of war crimes in the final stages of the war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in 2009 only if it is provided specific instances with prima facie evidence, a parliamentarian from […]

  • Sri Lanka Ends State of Emergency, Introduces New ‘Anti-Terror’ Law

    The Sri Lankan government lifted strict wartime emergency laws Tuesday night, but introduced new regulations under the Prevention of Terrorism Act allowing it to continue holding suspects detained during the state of emergency.Justice Minister Rauf Hakeem said Wednesday that about 1,200 people detained under the emergency laws will likely be freed soon. But hours later, […]

  • Minister Samarasinghe on UNHRC, HR action plan and LLRC

    Manjula FERNANDOPlantation Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe who also oversees the subject of human rights, in an interview with the Sunday Observer says the lifting of the Emergency is a commitment the Government has fulfilled to ensure that the right conditions exist on the ground for national reconciliation.“There are certain points of view now being expressed that […]

  • US welcomes ER move but warns Lanka again

    The United States while welcoming Thursday’s announcement of the lifting of emergency regulations in Sri Lanka, said yesterday if the government failed to meet international humanitarian obligations, then the international community would have to step in. “We continue to urge the Sri Lankan government to comply with international humanitarian laws and obligations, and we continue […]

  • Parliamentary team from India may visit Lanka

     A team of parliament members from India may soon visit Sri Lanka to see the condition of Tamil-speaking people there, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna informed the Rajya Sabha Thursday. ‘During a recent meeting with Tamil Nadu chief minister in Chennai, the Sri Lankan high commissioner to New Delhi has conveyed the Sri Lankan president’s […]

  • Book festival interview: Gordon Weiss on Sri Lanka’s civil war

    Margaret NeighbourUN spokesman during the bloody end of Sri Lanka’s civil war, Gordon Weiss says the organisation ‘should have pushed harder’ to save lives, especially those of trapped civilians…GORDON Weiss is driving across Sydney when I call. “Don’t worry, I’ve got a hands-free doo-da,” he says. “The police here will arrest me and do terrible […]

  • int’l pressure on sl unreasonable: Govt

    Dianne Silva The government said yesterday it was “unreasonable” for the international community to expect it to complete processes in a post-conflict situation, which have taken other countries in similar situations, many years to accomplish.“For example Spain, Cambodia and Bangladesh took many years and in some cases almost half a century to achieve standards that […]

  • Sri Lanka Ducks International Probe

    Amantha Perera Although the Sri Lankan government has evaded calls for an international probe into alleged excesses while militarily defeating Tamil separatism in 2009, it may yet be called to account at the September session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).The United States has asked Sri Lanka to place its own internal investigation under […]

  • Taming UNP’s ‘wild elephants’ – Editorial Sunday Observer

    ”If the UNP is to maintain discipline and take the party forward, its ‘wild elephants’ should be tamed. Despite the high drama enacted by the Reformist rebels, Wickremesinghe stood his ground.” The United National Party (UNP) is embroiled in crisis, the worst since its inception some 65 years ago. The UNP, one of the foremost […]

  • Darusman Report not admissible at UNHCR – Min. G L Peiris

    Dangerous results if entertained ;UNSG sole authority in such decision  Disna MUDALIGE The Darusman Report prepared by the advisory panel to the United Nations Secretary General (UNSG) cannot be submitted to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) since it is neither an official document by any means nor has it any kind of legitimate […]

  • Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa responds to criticism over his conduct. Read more >

    Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa responds to criticism over his conduct.

    Gota responds to ‘a brother out of control’ assertion Shamindra FerdinandoDefence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa yesterday expressed concern over The Hindu unfailingly targeting him on the basis of a recent interview he did with Indian TV channel, Headlines Today, in Colombo.Addressing a symposium on post-war challenges at the BMICH, to coincide with the launch of, […]

  • Engage more with Sri Lanka

    Sri Lanka’s Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s remarks that the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister’s call for economic sanctions against Sri Lanka were politically motivated, has once again brought the question of sanctions back into public consciousness — unfortunately. Tamil Nadu’s politicians, — the likes of Vaiko, who, though shrewd, are not famous for their economic reasoning […]

  • UN expects ‘something further’ on SL Read more >

    UN expects ‘something further’ on SL

    Expert Panel with UNSG Says panel report could still go to UNHRCSunil JayasiriClaiming that the Expert Panel report on Sri Lanka known as the Darusman report has not been formally submitted to the Human Rights Council yet, the UN said it expected to see that concerned Member States would “take it up and push for […]

  • Sri Lankan minister criticises SM Krishna Read more >

    Sri Lankan minister criticises SM Krishna

    Weerawansa A Sri Lankan minister on Tuesday criticised the External Affairs Minister SM Krishna’s suggestion for investigation into alleged human rights abuses in the island during the final battle with the LTTE.“The Indian foreign minister has said that human rights abuses in Sri Lanka need investigation. I would like to tell him that investigation must […]

  • Truth and Accountability: The Last Stages of the War in Sri Lanka Read more >

    Truth and Accountability: The Last Stages of the War in Sri Lanka

    Doyen of Sri Lanka ’s civil society intellectuals sharply criticizes the Darusman Report  Godfrey Gunatilleke, one of Sri Lanka’s and South Asia’s most respected intellectuals, a distinguished former civil servant, and founder of the country’s oldest independent think-tank, the MARGA Institute, made a sharply critical evaluation of the UNSG’s advisory Panel Report in an extended […]

  • United Nations: weak leaders wanted Read more >

    United Nations: weak leaders wanted

    ”In its last annual report, Human Rights Watch wrote “far from condemning repression, Ban sometimes went out of his way to portray oppressive governments in a positive light”. China, Burma, Sri Lanka have benefited from Mr Ban’s lax hand. To save his legacy he must refresh his top team with people who understand the UN’s […]

  • Cardinal warns of ‘isolation’ Read more >

    Cardinal warns of ‘isolation’

    The leader of the Catholic church in Sri Lanka has warned that the country risks being isolated in the face of international criticism. In his sermon to hundreds of thousands of Catholics on their annual pilgrimage to Madhu church, Mannar, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith called upon the authorities to come up with a “learned response” to […]

  • UK, Netherlands join fight against Koppe’s EU Court filing Read more >

    UK, Netherlands join fight against Koppe’s EU Court filing

    United Kingdom applied to the General Court of the European Union (CVRIA) for leave to intervene in the case (T 208/11) against the ban on the Liberation Tigers filed by Victor Koppe, attorney from Amsterdam-based Bohler Advocaten representing the LTTE, legal sources in Amsterdam said. The case is against the Council of the European Union’s […]

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