97 Reports

PA-JVP talks continue

[TamilNet, Friday, 31 August 2001, 18:22 GMT]
The first round of crucial talks between President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge and senior leaders of the Marxist-Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) which began Friday around 3 p.m. concluded late in the evening. JVP's Propaganda Secretary and Parliamentarian Mr.Wimal Weerawansa said another round of talks between them and the President is now being held at President's House.
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TULF says ceasefire offer a "ploy"

[TamilNet, Thursday, 30 August 2001, 14:26 GMT]
The Tamil United Liberation Front Thursday said that the Sri Lankan Government's offer of a truce with Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam is a ploy to deceive the Tamil people. Mr.Joseph Pararajasingham, TULF parliamentarian Thursday said the ceasefire offer made by the Sri Lankan Government soon after the breakdown of the talks between two main parties is an attempt to hoodwink Tamil political parties and the Tamil people.
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UNP for General Election

[TamilNet, Thursday, 30 August 2001, 14:24 GMT]
"Following the failure of talks between PA and UNP, now it seems the only way to get out from the present political crisis is to hold a general election to elect a new parliament," said Sri Lanka's opposition leader Mr.Ranil Wickremesinghe, addressing a gathering of business magnates, politicians and academics at Hotel Taj Samudra in Colombo, Wednesday night.
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LTTE rejects government offer as 'calculated ploy'

[TamilNet, Thursday, 30 August 2001, 09:06 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers Thursday rejected the Sri Lankan government's offer of a "mutually agreed ceasefire" as "a calculated political duplicity to divert the attention of the people and the world from the deepening crisis in Colombo." Mr. Anton Balasingham, the chief negotiator and political advisor of the LTTE told TamilNet Thursday that "the LTTE is not prepared to enter into negotiation with a corrupt, inefficient, unstable government which does not have a majority in Parliament."
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Blast kills three, injures seven

[TamilNet, Thursday, 30 August 2001, 06:21 GMT]
Two policemen and a civilian were killed in an explosjon near Kalmunai police station, 35 km. south of Batticaloa, around 8.30 a.m. Thursday morning. Seven civilians were wounded in the blast, accoring to police sources in Kalmunai.
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Speaker invites opposition parties to unity conference

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 29 August 2001, 15:24 GMT]
The Speaker Mr.Anura Bandaranaike has invited leaders of all political parties represented in parliament for a crucial conference Monday, 3 September. "This is to ensure that the request to re-summon parliament is backed by a majority of parliamentarians - at least 115 MPs -if the government prorogues parliament again on 7 September" authoritative sources said.
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PA-UNP talks end in failure

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 August 2001, 20:50 GMT]
The final round of talks between the ruling People's Alliance and the main opposition United National Party, which commenced Tuesday afternoon around 3 p.m. continued till late in the night. The talks which centered on forming a national reconciliation government, have finally failed to reach an agreement as both parties were adamant in their stand about sharing power in the proposed national or caretaker government, party sources said.
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Parliamentarian Challenges expulsion from NUA

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 August 2001, 20:49 GMT]
A Muslim Parliamentarian Tuesday filed a petition in the Supreme Court challenging his expulsion from the National Unity Alliance. Mr.Mohideen Abdul Cader said in his petition "NUA leader Ms Ferial Ashraff has no right to expel him from the party."
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SC orders compensation to Tamil youth under detention

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 August 2001, 20:46 GMT]
The Supreme Court Tuesday ordered the State to pay Rupees Twenty five thousand as compensation to a Tamil youth, upholding his fundamental rights application that his arrest and detention by the police was unlawful. The Jaffna Police arrested the petitioner last December, saying they had information that he underwent arms training from the LTTE.
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Five SLA soldiers killed

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 August 2001, 06:09 GMT]
Five Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers were killed when the tractor in which they were travelling was hit by a powerful claymore mine blast in the Kalmadhu area, about 25 km. west of Vavuniya, around 8.30 a.m Tuesday morning, army sources in the northern town said.
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PA-UNP talks conclude Tuesday

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 August 2001, 00:27 GMT]
The final round of talks between the ruling People's Alliance and the Main opposition United National Party would take place Tuesday, said a joint communiqué released after the second round of talks lasting four hours that ended Monday. Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar of the PA and Parliamentarian Mr.K.N.Choksy of UNP signed the joint communiqué.
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TULF urges main parties to be "realistic"

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 August 2001, 00:25 GMT]
Mr.R.Sampanthan, Secretary General of the Tamil United Liberation Front in a statement issued Monday reminded the two main political parties-ruling People's Alliance and main opposition United National Party that it would be "unrealistic" to think of "partial constitutional reforms in certain areas to ensure political, economic and social stability of the country until a just and durable solution is found to the Tamil national question."
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LTTE denies warning to Tamil MPs

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 August 2001, 18:09 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers Monday denied issuing a note circulating in the Jaffna peninsula warning Tamil MPs to quit the Sri Lankan Parliament and purported to originate from an organisation which the government says is a front of the LTTE. A notice issued by the ‘Sangiliyan Padai’ (Sangiliyan Army) on Saturday said those who refused “would not have an opportunity to regret their action.”
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SLMC Urges Govt. to hold General Election

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 August 2001, 11:56 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) Monday cautioned the Government that it would have to face dire consequences if Parliament is prorogued for second time. Mr.Rauff Hakeem, Leader of the SLMC and Kandy District Parliamentarian Monday said that the ruling People's Alliance was now holding talks with the main opposition United National Party and Janata Vimukthi Peramuna not to solve the present political crisis, but to continue in power for the rest of the period.
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UNP seeks general elections by December

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 August 2001, 01:07 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s main opposition United National Party (UNP) favours a caretaker government for a maximum of 12 weeks followed by general elections in December a means to end the ongoing political crisis, press reports said Sunday. “The UNP leader has indicated he will not go into a national government with the [ruling] People’s Alliance,” the independent Sunday Leader said.
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Fighting in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 August 2001, 00:46 GMT]
Heavy fighting erupted in the Muhamalai area, in the southern sector of the Jaffna peninsula when Sri Lanka Army (SLA) troops backed by tanks, artillery and air cover launched an operation along A-9 main road. The SLA offensive that began at around 5.30 a.m. Sunday was repulsed, the Voice of Tigers radio said.
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JVP ultimatum to Kumaratunga

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 August 2001, 00:42 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) Saturday evening issued an ultimatum to President Chandrika Kumaratunge to decide on their proposal for a 'probationary government' to resolve the present political crisis. "The delegation of the JVP told President Chandrika at a discussion held Saturday evening that they should arrive at a decision regarding the formation of a probationary government on or before August 31 Friday", party spokesman said.
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JVP studies President’s reply

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 August 2001, 11:16 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s President Chandrika Kumaratunge Friday replied to the Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) regarding her position in forming a probationary government as suggested by the latter during their two rounds of talks held earlier this month. However, the state-run Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), which reported the news did not reveal the contents of the President’s communication.
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PA names team for UNP talks

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 August 2001, 11:04 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s ruling People's Alliance (PA) Friday named its representatives to have political talks with the main opposition United National Party (UNP). The delegation included Ministers D.M.Jayaretna, Mahinda Rajapakse, Mangala Samaraweera, Anuruddha Ratwatte, Nimal Sripala de Silva and Lakshman Kadirgamar.
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UNP digs in over parliament

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 August 2001, 19:36 GMT]
Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe, Leader of the Opposition said Thursday that the fate of the present government will be decided on September 7 when parliament is reconvened. Addressing the protest rally organized by the Alliance for Democracy at the Town Hall in Colombo, Mr.Wickremasinghe said, "my party is not prepared to give a new lease of life to the People's Alliance government which is now on the verge of collapse due to its bad governance."
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UNP ready for conditional talks with PA

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 August 2001, 11:21 GMT]
The leader of Sri Lanka’s main opposition party said Thursday that his United National Party (UNP) was prepared to hold discussions with the ruling People's Alliance government to find a solution to the country’s political and economic crises. "However, these discussions should be based on the acceptance of the democratic policies and the concepts of parliamentary majority," Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe stressed in a letter to Sri Lanka’s Prime Minster, Ratnasiri Wickremanayake. The UNP leader has said that proposed talks could commence Friday.
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Anti-government demonstration in Colombo

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 August 2001, 09:45 GMT]
Thousands of demonstrators Thursday afternoon around 2 p.m. started marching towards Colombo Town Hall to attend a mass rally organised by the People's Alliance for Democracy, demanding President Chandrika Kumaratunge to reconvene the Parliament and cancel the proposed referendum for a new constitution.
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Tigers attack SLA at Kokkuthoduvaai

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 August 2001, 06:32 GMT]
Thirteen Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers were killed and 24 wounded when the Liberation Tigers attacked forward defence lines of the Kokkuthoduvaai camp south of Mullaithivu, in the north-eastern coast, around 3 a.m Thursday. Ten SLA soldiers have been reported 'missing' in the attack, army sources said. Six LTTE members were killed in the fighting, the sources added.
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Court stays PA’s expulsion of SLMC MPs

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 August 2001, 21:48 GMT]
The Colombo District Judge Wednesday issued an enjoining order restraining the ruling People's Alliance PA) General Secretary and his disciplinary committee from taking steps to expel three Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) MPs from parliament.
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Tamil detainees said mistreated in Kalutara

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 August 2001, 21:47 GMT]
The Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO) has protested to the Department of Prisons about “the inhuman treatment meted out to Tamil prisoners in Kalutara prison by prison authorities”. Mr.A.Selvam Adaikalanathan, Vanni district Parliamentarian and leader of the TELO stated in a letter to the Commissioner of Prisons that “fifty Tamil prisoners are locked up in a ward of 20 feet by 40 feet while 23 Sinhala prisoners are kept in a ward which could accommodate more than hundred persons. This act clearly indicates the discrimination meted out to Tamil prisoners at Kalutara prisons by the authorities concerned.”
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Supreme Court orders student examined

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 August 2001, 21:46 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s Supreme Court Wednesday ordered that Jaffna University Student Krishnasamy Thiviyan should be subjected to medical examination by the Colombo Judicial Medical Officer (JMO). A three member bench presided by Chief Justice Sarath N.Silva and comprising Justice Shiranee A.Bandaranaike and Justice P.Edussuriya issued the order when a fundamental rights application filed on behalf of Thiviyan was taken up for inquiry. Sri Lanka’s Attorney General and the General Officer Commanding of the Sri Lanka Army, Jaffna district have been cited as the respondents in the application.
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"National govt. won't solve problems" -Hakeem

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 August 2001, 15:45 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress has appealed to the main opposition United National Party to formulate and implement a strategy that would compel the government to call a new general election early. Mr.Rauff Hakeem, leader of the SLMC and Kandy District Parliamentarian Wednesday said, "some political parties joining in the name of forming a national government of reconciliation will not solve the burning problems of the country."
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Mine blast injures 18

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 August 2001, 15:38 GMT]
Eighteen people were wounded when the bus in which they were travelling was hit by a mine blast at Periyakulam, about 10 km. north of Trincomalee on Uppuveli-Kuchchaveli road around 12.30 p.m. Wednesday noon, police sources said. The incident occurred between Chittor and Nilaveli.
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Attack said to mark Koneswary rape and murder

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 August 2001, 04:22 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers in Batticaloa said that Tuesday's attack on the Sri Lanka Police detachement in the island's eastern province was carried out to mark the death of Koneswary Murugesapillai, a thirty five year old mother of three who was gang raped and murdered in front of her family allegedly by a group of Policemen from the Central Camp Police station on 21 August 1997. Koneswary was killed, according to her family, when the Policemenmen exploded a grenade on her lower abdomen to destroy evidence of the rape. None of the perpetrators of the woman's rape and murder have been brought to book so far.
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"Government has ignored LTTE's Peace efforts" -Thmail Chelvan

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 August 2001, 23:03 GMT]
"The Liberation Tigers observed a four-month ceasefire with the intention of bringing an end to the war, but the Sri Lankan government ignored our ceasefire. It is unfortunate that our efforts to bring peace did not succeed," Mr. S.P.Thamil Chelvan, political wing leader of the LTTE, has told Mr. A.P.Nanayakkara, leader of the Association of Families of Servicemen Missing in Action (AFSMA), who spoke at a news conference in Colombo on Tuesday.
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President says Dissanayake "dishonest"

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 August 2001, 17:30 GMT]
A senior minister and General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party, Mr.S.B.Dissanayake, is likely to make a decision shortly whether to continue in the government or to leave, following a letter sent to him by President Chandrika Kumaratunge, ruling party sources said. The President stated in her letter that she has lost confidence in Mr.Dissanayake as he had violated financial regulations and government's directives in running the ministry of Samurdhi (Poverty Alleviation).
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PM seeks talks with Opposition Leader

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 August 2001, 17:25 GMT]
The Prime Minister Tuesday invited the main opposition United National Party for official talks for the formation of a national reconciliation government, in a fresh bid to bring the present political crisis to an end. "Early talks could be held if the United National Party agreed to the proposals of the People's Alliance Government," said Prime Minister Mr.Ratnasiri Wickremanayake, in a letter to Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe, the Leader of the Opposition.
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Tigers overrun Police camp

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 August 2001, 03:20 GMT]
At least twenty military trained policemen were killed and 20 wounded when the Liberation Tigers attacked and destroyed the main Police station at Central Camp, Monday night, police sources in Ampara said. Seven others were reported missing in the attack, the sources said. Central Camp is a Sinhala settlement, about 35 kilometers south west of Batticaloa near the district's border with Ampara.
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Senior Minister admits differences with President

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 August 2001, 18:50 GMT]
The General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party, Mr.S.B.Dissanayake Monday said "difference of opinion has arisen between him and President Chandrika Kumaratunge over fulfilling the aspirations of people". Mr.Dissanayake, the Minister of Samurdhi (Poverty Alleviation), Human Development and Parliamentary Affairs added "however these differences could be sorted out through negotiations." Ms.Chandrika Kumaratunge holds the post of President of Sri Lanka Freedom Party. The SLFP is the major constituent party of the ruling People's Alliance.
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Furore over chemical warheads continues

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 August 2001, 18:30 GMT]
(News Feature) The furore over the Sri Lanka Army's purchase of a thousand units of the RPO-A Shmel infantry flamethrower continued this week as the Sunday Leader published further details of a corruption scandal in which the paper claims Army commander Lt. Gen. Lionel Balagalle is involved. Last week the SLA initially defended its purchase of the chemical warheads which are said to be internationally banned but then reversed its position, asserting that the Shmel was in fact not a chemical weapon and hence was not banned.
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Marxists and Buddhist monks join for protest

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 August 2001, 18:13 GMT]
Sri Lanka's politically powerful Buddhist clergy aligned with the island's radical and 'moderate' Marxists Monday to demand that the Sri Lankan government should reconvene the Parliament and call off the proposed referendum on a referendum for a new constitution. The People's Centre for Democracy and the Freedom of the Country held a demonstration Monday around 2.30 p.m. at the Lipton Circus, a busy intersection in downtown Colombo. Thousands of protestors held placards and shouted slogans against the People's Alliance regime.
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Opposition plans massive rally, urges president's resignation

[TamilNet, Sunday, 19 August 2001, 19:36 GMT]
The main opposition United National Party has launched a campaign to mobilize support of the people for its massive protest rally scheduled to be held in Colombo on August 23 Thursday, opposition party source said. Senior leaders of the UNP have been attending awareness meetings in several towns in the country to get more people to Colombo to attend the proposed rally, organised by The Alliance for Democracy organizes the rally, the sources said.
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Jaffna students urge Colombo to stop bombing

[TamilNet, Sunday, 19 August 2001, 16:11 GMT]
The Jaffna University Students Union (JUSU) appealed to international community "to intervene and safeguard the lives of Tamil students and civilians in the northeastern province from the continuing reprisal aerial attacks by the Sri Lanka Air Force". The JUSU in a statement issued Sunday said "aerial attacks targeting civilian positions such as schools and residential areas in northeast, particularly in Vanni and other Tigers controlled region are taking place almost daily. These indiscriminate aerial attacks have caused deaths and destruction to lives and properties of Tamil civilians".
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No portfolios after handing in resignations -UNP

[TamilNet, Sunday, 19 August 2001, 16:07 GMT]
The United National Party said Sunday that deputy ministers who have submitted undated resignation letters to President Chandrika Kumaratunga cannot hold on to their portfolios and enjoy privileges and other facilities they enjoyed earlier. A UNP spokesman said that his party is contemplating legal action if the government ministers who submitted undated resignation letters to the President, purportedly as a reiteration of their confidence in her, do not relinquish their portfolios forthwith. "They have no moral right now to stay on," said an opposition spokesman. Government sources, however, dismissed the UNP's call, saying that the letters of resignation are undated.
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'Mole' kills leader of SLA penetration team

[TamilNet, Sunday, 19 August 2001, 00:35 GMT]
A soldier of a Sri Lanka army deep penetration group was killed in the early hours of the morning Saturday when he was shot by another trooper of the unit that was lying in ambush at Kurinjamunai junction inside the area held by the Liberation Tigers west of Batticaloa town. The trooper got away with the weapons of his dead team leader. Both men are from the SLA's National Guard. Military sources in Batticaloa said that the trooper who got away was an LTTE 'mole'.
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UNP calls for dissolution of parliament

[TamilNet, Sunday, 19 August 2001, 00:20 GMT]
The United National Party has called for "the immediate dissolution of the parliament and a general election held thereafter if there is no possibility of debating the no-confidence motion". Mr.Gamini Atukorale, Deputy Leader of the main opposition United National Party made this call addressing meeting at Kandy Friday evening.
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SLAF Mig 27 crashes

[TamilNet, Saturday, 18 August 2001, 06:30 GMT]
A Sri Lanka Air Force Mig 27 aircraft crashed near the Katunayaka international airport Saturday around 11.18 a.m. The Russian built Mig 27 fell over the town of Seeduwa, two kilometres north of the airport. The aircraft was completely destroyed and the Russian pilot was killed in the crash.
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Controversial weapon meant for genocide alleges MP

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 August 2001, 14:26 GMT]
"The Sri Lankan government is going to deploy chemical weapons against the Tamils in the island's north and east. The aim is to annihilate them totally. The use of this dangerous chemical weapon against the Tamil people should be strongly condemned," said Mr. Joseph Pararajasingham, Tamil United Liberation Front MP for Batticaloa, addressing legislators who gathered Friday in the Sri Lankan Parliament and decided to press ahead with the no confidence motion against President Kumaratunga's government.
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SL crisis deepens as majority legislators stake claim

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 August 2001, 12:17 GMT]
The majority of the members of the Sri Lankan Parliamentarian met in the legislature Friday and unanimously resolved to go ahead with the no confidence motion against President Chandrika Kumaratunga's government and defy any attempt by her to suspend Parliament again.
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"Economy in shambles, law and order breakdown"- opposition

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 August 2001, 19:58 GMT]
"The economy is in shambles. There is no law and order. The government has no majority in parliament. The government is not in a position to present the budget," said Dr.Karunasena Kodituwakku, Media Spokesman and parliamentarian of the United National Party (UNP), addressing opposition demonstrators at Kolonnawa, an outer suburb of Colombo, Thursday. The Marxist Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) demonstrated against President Kumaratunga's government Thursday in front of the island's central railway station in downtown Colombo, despite reports that the party might help her stay in power.
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Hakeem castigates PA for "injustices" to minorities

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 August 2001, 16:38 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (Hakeem wing) has blamed the People's Alliance (PA) government for racial violence perpetrated on Muslims and other minority communities in the island since 1994. "The Muslim community in the country has witnessed more than seventy incidents of racial violence against it under the present government," said Mr.Rauff Hakeem, the Leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress, addressing a public meeting at Panduwasnwara in the Kandy district Thursday evening.
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Search operation in Tamil suburb

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 August 2001, 13:28 GMT]
All private boarding houses and lodges in the Wellawatte police area were searched by special police teams Wednesday night. All inmates were closely questioned and documents in their possession were thoroughly examined. The search operation, which commenced around 9 p.m. ended by midnight, Wellawatte police sources said. Wellawatte is a Tamil dominated suburb in the southern sector of Colombo city.
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LTTE condemns Sri Lankas purchase of chemical weapons

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 August 2001, 09:17 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), in a statement issued from its headquarters in Vanni, northern Sri Lanka today, warned the Kumaratunga government of disastrous consequences if it inducted the recently acquired weapons with chemical warheads into the north-eastern theatre of war.
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Tigers, SLN clashes in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 August 2001, 07:56 GMT]
Three Sri Lanka Navy personnel were killed and two wounded in an ambush by the Liberation Tigers at Kallarawa in Kuchchaveli police area, 36 km. north of Trincomalee town, around 8 a.m. Thursday. Four LTTE members were killed in the ensuing gun battle, naval sources said.
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LTTE denies talks with Sri Lankan minister

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 15 August 2001, 09:58 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers Wednesday denied claims by the Sri Lankan government that the organisation had met and held talks with a Sri Lankan cabinet Minister during his visit Monday to the Roman Catholic shrine in Madhu, a town held by the LTTE. When contacted by telephone, the LTTE’s chief negotiator, Anton Balasingham, told TamilNet Wednesday that Aviation Minister Jeyaraj Fernandopulle had merely met with the LTTE’s border security guards.
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STF sets up camp in Thuraineelavanai library

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 August 2001, 20:12 GMT]
Commandos of the elite Special Task Force (STF) of the Sri Lankan security forces set up camp in a library 29 kilometres south of Batticaloa on Monday, sources said. Residents of the village of Thuraineelavanai said that the STF had moved into their village Monday evening and had occupied the local library.
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Student killed, houses destroyed in SLAF bombing

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 August 2001, 19:19 GMT]
A student was killed and a girl was seriously injured in a heavy bombing raid by the Sri Lanka Air Force on villages in Kilinochchi south Monday, the night news broadcast of the Voice of Tigers said. Tharmakulasingham Jegathees, 22, was blown to pieces when his village was hit by the air strike, the radio said. The student was killed when the SLAF’s Kfir fighter jet bombers bombed the village of Puthiya Punnaineeraavi, Monday, according to the radio. The SLAF has stepped up heavy bombing raids in the north and east of the island.
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Ferial Ashraff's convoy stoned

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 August 2001, 17:06 GMT]
A convoy in which the National Unity Alliance (NUA) leader and Sri Lankan cabinet minister Ms. Ferial Ashraff was travelling, was stoned at Oddamavadi in Batticaloa district Tuesday afternoon around 1 p.m., the police said. The Minister was travelling in a convoy of ten cars from Kattankudy to Colombo after holding special delegates' conference in the eastern province last week.
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Violations increasing in Trincomalee -HRC

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 August 2001, 12:21 GMT]
Complaints against armed forces, police and state institutions received by the Trincomalee regional office of the Human Rights Commission (HRC) of Sri Lanka this year up to June has increased by eight fold compared to last year, states a report to the Head Office of the HRC in Colombo. "In last year 28.5 percent complaints were against the Police, 21 percent against the three armed forces and the rest against the state institutions in the Trincomalee district " said the report filed by the Trincomalee regional office of the HRC.
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Anti-Govt. demonstrations in 70 towns

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 August 2001, 19:04 GMT]
Demonstrations were held in seventy towns throughout the island Monday demanding the resignation of the People's Alliance government and "the installation of an interim government to bring in democratic reforms." The People's Movement for Democracy organized these demonstrations at Galle, Kandy, Ratnapura, Matale, Polonnaruwa, Kurunagala, Kadawatte, and other important towns.
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Power struggle for SLMC leadership takes new turn

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 August 2001, 19:03 GMT]
The power struggle in the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress took a dramatic turn Monday when the Colombo District Judge Mr.Sunil Rajapakse issued an enjoining order restraining Mr.M.L.A.M. Hisbullah from representing or acting as the President of the SLMC. The District Judge issued the order according to the plaint by the General Secretary of the SLMC (Hakeem wing), Mr.A.L.M.Haffrath.
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Sri Lanka acquires ‘banned’ weapons

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 August 2001, 16:19 GMT]
(NEWS FEATURE) The Sri Lanka Army has acquired an infantry weapon with a chemical warhead whose use has been shunned internationally except by Russia due to the risk to civilians, press reports said this weekend. In an expose, the Sunday Leader said that the SLA had spent several million dollars to acquire 1000 units of the shoulder-fired RPO-A Shmel Rocket Launcher, but that amidst bribes sought by the SLA commander, Lt. General Lionel Ballagalle, the weapons delivered were of old stock and may have exceeded their shelf life. The US Defence Intelligence Agency says the weapon’s chemical warhead is toxic and hence dangerous even if it fails to detonate.
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Kumaratunga impervious to power sharing -legal expert

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 August 2001, 15:41 GMT]
"The prorogation of the Parliament was legal but it was used to foist an unconstitutional action on the people," said Dr.Rohan Edirisingha, a legal and constitutional expert with the Centre for Policy Alternatives in Colombo, speaking at seminar for Tamil journalists Monday. Responding to a question on the prospects of a national government Dr.Edirisingha said: "President Chandrika Kumaratunga is totally unaware of the implications of power sharing." The two-day seminar Media Freedom and Human Rights was organised by the Tamil Media Alliance and the Home for Human Rights in Colombo.
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Search operation in Dehiwala

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 August 2001, 15:18 GMT]
More than five hundred Tamils were arrested during a house-to-house search operation by Sri Lanka Army and Police personnel in Colombo's suburb of Dehiwala, in the early hours of Sunday. About one hundred of them were taken to local police station for interrogation, the Police said.
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JVP re-iterates conditional support to PA

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 August 2001, 18:56 GMT]
The Marxist-Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) Saturday said that it would support a probation government while continuing to be in opposition, without accepting positions in government. Mr.Wimal Weerawanse, Propaganda Secretary and a Parliamentarian, said in an interview with the State-run Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation that his party's proposal to form a probation government has been made to President Chandrika Kumaratunge, to "save the country from economic disaster and political anarchy."
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Detainees transferred to Kalutara

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 August 2001, 18:55 GMT]
More than thirty Tamil youths detained at the Batticaloa prison were transferred this month to the Kalutara prison, south of Colombo, according to the Up-country People's Front (UPF), which has brought this matter to the notice of the Human Rights Commission (HRC).
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France refutes visa denial claim

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 August 2001, 20:48 GMT]
The French Foreign Ministry Friday denied claims by the Sri Lankan information department and state media that it had denied entry to the Liberation Tigers‚ chief negotiator Anton Balasingham and other individuals alleged by Sri Lanka to be linked to the LTTE. A spokesman for the French government, quoted the Foreign Minister Hubert Verdrine, said "We have not banned any particular persons or members of any particular organisations from entering France."
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President receptive to JVP's proposals

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 August 2001, 17:10 GMT]
President Chandrika Kumaratunge Friday agreed to discuss the Marxist Janata Vimukthi Peramuna's political proposals with the leaders of constituent parties in the ruling People's Alliance. The JVP's parliamentary group leader Wimal Weerawanse said, "the President has agreed to a number of proposals in our program. She wanted more time to discuss with her political allies about the proposal to form a probation government."
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TULF appeals against Army offensive

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 August 2001, 10:22 GMT]
The Tamil United Liberation Front Friday urged President Chandrika Kumaratunge to instruct the Sri Lanka Army to stop launching a major operation in eastern province. "The intended military operation will cause mass destruction and loss of life among civilians. I wish to point out that this type of operation will not be tolerated by any right thinking people, in particular by the international community" said Mr.V.Anandasangaree, Senior Vice President of the TULF in a letter faxed tothe President.
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Army warns of assault on LTTE in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 August 2001, 20:02 GMT]
Sri Lankan security forces in Batticaloa Thursday issued a press note warning about a major offensive assault in the eastern district, and urged civilians to move 4 km. away from the camps of the Liberation Tigers.
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Over 100 arrested in combined search

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 August 2001, 17:18 GMT]
More than one hundred Tamils were arrested during a major cordon and search operation in Kochchikade, about 50 km. north of Colombo Thursday morning. More than one thousand Army and Police personnel were deployed during the operation, police said.
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President-JVP to have crucial talks on Friday

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 August 2001, 14:15 GMT]
The Marxist-Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) said Thursday that it would have talks with President Chandrika Kumaratunge Friday afternoon about the formation of "a probation government".
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TULF urges President to start talks with LTTE

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 August 2001, 07:00 GMT]
The Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) Wednesday urged Sri Lanka's President Chandrika Kumaratunge to pursue the Norwegian peace initiative and commence negotiations with the Liberation Tigers before framing a new constitution. A press statement issued by the TULF, after meeting the President on Wednesday, said that the party had urged the President to "reconvene Parliament and also not to proceed with the referendum."
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Trincomalee Cadets win Championship

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 August 2001, 06:51 GMT]
The Trincomalee district Cadet group emerged champions in the island in the 2001 National Cadet Camp organized by the St.John Ambulance Association and Brigade of Sri Lanka held at Labuduwa, a village in the deep south of the country.
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JVP wants "probation" government

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 August 2001, 16:02 GMT]
The Marxist-Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) Wednesday called for what they described as a "probationary" government. A party spokesman said that the JVP has submitted a proposal to the Sri Lankan government for the purpose. "The government should have cancelled the referendum instead of postponing it. If the parliament is reconvened it would be possible to consider the governmentÌs proposal for setting up of a constitution planning council," Mr. Wimal Weerawanse, Propaganda Secretary of the JVP, said.
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Joint opposition demands parliament reopens

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 August 2001, 11:05 GMT]
The joint opposition Wednesday asked the Government to reconvene parliament immediately and to cancel the referendum. Leaders of united National Party, Janata Vimukthi Peramuna, Sihala Urumaya, Tamil United Liberation Front, Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (Hakeem group) and All Ceylon Tamil Congress met this morning under the leadership of Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe, Leader of the Opposition and reviewed the President's decision to postpone the referendum for October 18.
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Buddhist monks protest in Colombo

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 August 2001, 19:47 GMT]
More than two thousand Buddhist monks demonstrated at the old Town Hall in Colombo Tuesday demanding that the government cancel the referendum. The monks are opposed to granting regional autonomy to the Tamils in Sri Lanka. Buddhist organisations say that referendum would pave the way for Tamil self rule and separation.
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Referendum postponed

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 August 2001, 15:21 GMT]
Sri Lanka's President Chandrika Kumaratunge in a proclamation issued Tuesday evening postponed for October 18 the referendum which has been scheduled to be held on August 21.
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SLAF bombs eastern villages

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 August 2001, 14:53 GMT]
Seven houses were destroyed and at least ten cattle were killed due to heavy aerial bombing by two Sri Lanka Airforce Kifir jets on residential areas in the villages of Pendukalchenai and Thoppigala, about 34 km north-west of Batticaloa town around 10.30 a.m. Tuesday morning, residents said.
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Opposition urges checks on referendum rigging

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 August 2001, 21:16 GMT]
Opposition parties Monday urged the Sri Lanka's Commissioner of Elections to take steps to stop rigging at the referendum on 21 August. Leaders of the United National Party, the Marxist Janata Vimukthi Peramuna, the Tamil United Liberation Front and the Sihala Urumaya met the Coomissioner of elections Monday morning for discussions about conducting the referendum in a free and fair manner.
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Referendum cancellation reports dismissed

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 August 2001, 18:35 GMT]
Sri Lankan government sources Monday dismissed reports that the President might cancel the referendum on 21 August in the face of mounting opposition to it. "Postal voting will begin as scheduled in three days. The Commissioner of Elections has made most of the arrangement for holding the referendum", a government spokesman said.
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Army, Police search TELO office

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 August 2001, 18:32 GMT]
The offices of the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO) in Vavuniya was searched by the Sri Lanka army and Police Monday, ahead of the public meeting by the Alliance of Eleven Tamil parties Wednesday in the border town. Soldiers and Policemen dug the floor of the office in several places, a local TELO official said.
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Tamil coalition to campaign against referendum

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 August 2001, 17:22 GMT]
A coalition of 11 Tamil and Muslim political parties Monday decided to campaign against the August 21 referendum for a new constitution. The Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF), All Ceylon Tamil Congress (ACTC), Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO), Democratic Workers Congress Party, Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF), People's Liberation Organisation Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), Muslim United Liberation Front (MULF), Democratic Worker's Congress were among the parties that participated in the meeting held in Colombo Tuesday.
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Base may displace thousands

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 August 2001, 16:38 GMT]
Following the establishment of a new Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) camp in the village of Varothiar Nagar, about six km north of Trincomalee town Sunday, about two thousand Tamil people living there face imminent displacement for the third time in their life.
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UNP leader predicts "new govt." after referendum

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 August 2001, 14:57 GMT]
The leader of the United National Party, Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe, Sunday night said that all opposition political parties would form a new government soon after the referendum. He was speaking at an anti-referendum meeting held at Ambalantota, a town in the deep south of the country, amidst speculation that the main opposition party and the ruling People's Alliance are moving slowly toward forming a national government.
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SLMC power struggle before Elections Commissioner

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 August 2001, 16:17 GMT]
The leadership crisis in the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress is to be taken to the Commissioner of Elections for a final decision. This is sequel to the power struggle as Mr.Rauff Hakeem and Mr.M.L.A.M.Hisbullah are claiming the leadership of the SLMC.
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TELO-EPRLF clashes lead to SLA's search of camps

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 August 2001, 16:15 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers Sunday searched eight camps of the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO) in Vavuniya town and its suburbs, said Suthan, local leader of TELO in Vavuniya. He said that no reason was given for the search. The troops also searched two camps of the Eelam People's Revolutionary Front (Perumal's faction) (EPRLF).
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TULF calls for cancellation of referendum

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 August 2001, 14:51 GMT]
The Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) has appealed to the President Chandrika Kumaratunge to cancel the August 21 referendum and reconvene the prorogued parliament. "In the event of the proclamation calling for the referendum not being revoked the TULF has decided unanimously to vote against the referendum", said in a statement issued Sunday evening by the Secretary General and the Senior Vice President of the party Messrs R.Sampanthan and V.Anandasangaree respectively.
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PA to expel SLMC rebel MPs

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 August 2001, 07:44 GMT]
The ruling People's Alliance has initiated disciplinary inquiry against three Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) parliamentarians for joining the opposition in parliament. The Secretary General of the People's Alliance Mr.D.M.Jayaratne has issued show cause notices on Mr.A.L.A.Athuallah, Mr.M.S.M.Thouweek and Mr.Risvie Sinnalebbe "why they should not be expelled from parliament for the defection from government group."
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"Stop arms, promote peace", MP tells US officials

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 August 2001, 23:09 GMT]
"The war in Sri Lanka is escalating because countries that say that there should be a political solution to the island's ethnic conflict are providing arms and money to the government here. Some are even training the Sri Lankan army troops. These governments should stop giving military aid to Sri Lanka and exert pressure on it to seek a negotiated settlement to the problem", said Selvam Adaikalanathan, MP for the Vanni and the leader of the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation, speaking to US embassy officials who called on him Friday at his official in Colombo.
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Three civilians hospitalized after assault

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 August 2001, 22:55 GMT]
Three civilians severely injured in an indiscriminate attack by Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers in Navanthurai, Jaffna, on Thursday were admitted to the Jaffna Teaching Hospital. The victims were Anthonithas Pedropillai (37), Sebastian Ivan (22), and Saminathan Gunaseelan (32), hospital sources said.
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PA in fix over ally's demands

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 August 2001, 17:30 GMT]
The Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC), a major constituent party of the Peoples' Alliance, told Tamilnet Friday it is awaiting the President's response to its two demands that "that Sri Lankan citizenship be granted to four hundred thousand Tamils in the island's plantation sector and that sixteen electorates should be carved out for them". The party's leader Mr. Arumugam Thondaman said that the CWC would not support the referendum if the PA does not meet its demands.
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TULF branches call on Tamils to oppose referendum

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 August 2001, 16:01 GMT]
The Batticaloa District Branch of the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) Friday decided to request the Tamil people to vote against the August 21 referendum "to register their protest to the People's Government as it has failed to solve the ethnic problem during its seven year rule". A resolution to this effect was unanimously adopted at the committee meeting of the TULF district branch Friday with Batticaloa parliamentarian Mr.Joseph Pararajasingham in the chair.
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Sinhala nationalist party to support referendum

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 August 2001, 15:33 GMT]
The Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP), a constituent party of the ruling People's Alliance, decided to extend its "fullest support" to the government for the 21 August referendum following a pledge by the Sri Lankan President that the draft constitution withdrawn last year will not be reintroduced. A unanimous decision to this effect was taken at a meeting attended by MEP parliamentarians, provincial councillors and members of local authorities held Friday.
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Sihala Urumaya brokers 'truce' between PA-UNP

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 August 2001, 06:58 GMT]
The Sihala Urumaya (SU), the hardline Sinhala Buddhist nationalist party has appealed to the main opposition, United National Party to drop the no-confidence and impeachment motions against the People's Alliance government to end the present political crisis. The General Secretary of the SU Mr.Tilak Karunaratne made this request to the leader of the UNP when he met the latter Thursday.
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Judgement on referendum set for Aug. 10

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 August 2001, 22:43 GMT]
The arguments for and against the cancellation of the referendum were heard by for the third day by the Sri Lanka's Appeal Court Thursday. The court said that judgment will be given on 10 August.
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Four SLA soldiers killed

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 August 2001, 19:18 GMT]
Three Sri Lanka Army soldiers were killed and three others were wounded in a claymore mine attack in the Omanthai area, about 14 km. north of Vavuniya Thursday morning, military sources said. They said the claymore was placed on a tree near a sentry post.
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Soldiers in murder case remanded

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 August 2001, 19:16 GMT]
Six Sri Lanka Army soldiers allegedly involved in the murder of a young farmer, Arunasalam Chandramohan at Sithaandy, 24 kilometers north of Batticaloa were remanded till 7 August, when they were produced in court by the Eravur Police.
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JVP to support PA if referendum is called off

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 August 2001, 15:28 GMT]
The Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) Thursday said that it was prepared to extend conditional support to the People's Alliance (PA) government for one year, if the PA called off the August 21 referendum. Mr.Tilvin Silva, General Secretary of the JVP told a press conference Thursday morning that they would give a year for the PA government to implement democratic reforms.
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Major search operation in Mannar

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 August 2001, 11:14 GMT]
A large number of Sri Lanka Army troops along with Navy and police personnel were deployed in a joint search operation in Mannar town Thursday morning. Residents said troops sealed off the town from 5 a.m. till 11 a.m. and conducted house-to-house searches. All shops in the town were also searched, they added.
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Batticaloa workers said vulnerable to arrest, detention

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 August 2001, 15:50 GMT]
Ninety-three civilians in Batticaloa district arrested by the Sri Lankan security forces from January to 31 July this year are still in detention, according to Human Rights Commission officials in the eastern town Wednesday. Sixty-nine were arrested in Batticloa and twenty-four in other districts; the whereabouts of three persons arrested in Batticaloa is still not known, they said. Relatives said that the three have been presumed missing. Meanwhile Police sources in Colombo said that the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has arrested 20 Tamils so far in connection with the attack on the Katunayaka Sri Lanka Air Force base and international airport on 24 July.
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World Teachers urge President to expedite peace talks

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 August 2001, 15:16 GMT]
The World Teachers' Conference held under the auspices of the Education International (EI) at Jimstil City in Thailand, unanimously adopted a resolution requesting the Sri Lankan President to "expedite the Norwegian brokered peace process to find a lasting political solution to the ethnic problem." Over 2000 delegates from 150 countries representing 310 teachers' trade unions in the world attended the conference, according to Mr.T.Mahasivam, General Secretary of the Ceylon Tamil Teachers' Union (CTTU) who returned home from Thailand Tuesday evening.
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