221 Reports

Security strengthened in Colombo for May Day

[TamilNet, Friday, 30 April 2004, 19:38 GMT]
Sri Lanka's capital Colombo has been put on red alert and more police and army personnel have been deployed at strategic places to ensure a violence-free May Day celebrations Saturday. Several roads have been prohibited for traffic within certain periods on the May Day to avoid traffic jam and to ensure security for processions and rallies, police said
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Assault, detention of LTTE cadres sparks protest

[TamilNet, Friday, 30 April 2004, 18:36 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Police severely assaulted and detained two members of the Liberation Tigers’ sports division Friday at Puthur Junction in Jaffna. Several civilians and a journalist were also assaulted and manhandled by the Police when the two Tigers were taken away in a truck. Hundreds of people gathered in front of the Atchuvely Police station where the two LTTE cadres were detained Friday night, protesting against the assault and demanding their immediate release.
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Kandapola killings create suspicions on UPFA’s complicity - EPRLF

[TamilNet, Friday, 30 April 2004, 15:48 GMT]
“The ethnic violence directed against the Tamil people in Kandapola, in the Nuwara Eliya district, by thugs and Sri Lanka Police resulting in the killing of Tamils, has created suspicions in the minds of the Tamil people that the violence was instigated and by the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government of Sri Lanka, in retaliation for its failure to win the support of the major Tamil parties in the election of the Speaker," charged Mr. S. Premachandran, the Secretary General of the Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF-Suresh Wing) Thursday.
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NPC holds workshop on de-mining in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Friday, 30 April 2004, 14:16 GMT]
"De-mining work in the northeast province has been severely hampered as the international aid agencies show reluctance to provide funds for such work due to the failure to sign the Ottawa convention that prohibits the use of landmines and other related explosives by the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)," said a Director of the National Peace Council (NPC), Mr.S. Balakrishnan, addressing a de-mining workshop in Jaffna Friday.
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Women's equality stressed in May Day Message

[TamilNet, Friday, 30 April 2004, 11:37 GMT]
"Tamil Nationalism has embraced equality of women as a fundamental tenet. On this May Day we call upon everyone to join hands and work towards eradicating the remaining hurdles faced by women so that our social progress can reach still higher levels," said the Mullaithivu branch of the Centre for Women's Development and Rehabilitation (CWDR) in its May Day message released Friday.
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SLA restricts night traffic through entry points in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Friday, 30 April 2004, 02:38 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Army on Thursday introduced new rules to restrict traffic at night between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. through the eight entry points in the Batticaloa district through which the public can pass between the Liberation Tigers-controlled areas and the SLA-controlled areas in the district, Tamil media sources in the East said Thursday.
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LTTE, trade unions to hold May Day in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 April 2004, 20:37 GMT]
Trade unions, public organizations and the Liberation Tigers in the Batticaloa district will jointly hold the May Day at 4:00 p.m. Saturday at the Kaluthavalai public sports grounds, 22 km south of Batticaloa town, sources said.
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UPFA will not accept JHU as an ally - Anura Bandaranaike

[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 April 2004, 18:23 GMT]
Mr.Anura Bandaranaike, Minister of Investment Promotion and Tourism in the United People's Freedom Alliance government of Sri Lanka, said Thursday that the UPFA would not form a coalition with the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), saying that his party could not accept the JHU's policies, according to media sources.
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U.S.-based Sri Lankan cardiologist develops new artificial heart valve

[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 April 2004, 17:13 GMT]
Dr. Rohan Jayasinghe, an interventional cardiologist of Sri Lankan origin based in New York, U.S., on Wednesday presented what is said to be the world’s first artificial mitral heart valve that can be delivered to and implanted in the heart through a catheter inserted through a blood vessel in the groin, thus precluding the need for open heart surgery in heart valve replacement, at Columbia University in New York, medical sources said.
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Suspects in Analaitivu EPDP camp fire allowed bail

[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 April 2004, 14:42 GMT]
The Kayts Magistrate, Mr.A.Premashankar, Thursday released 22 residents of Analaitivu in the Jaffna district, arrested by the police in connection with the torching of a camp of the paramilitary Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP) in the village on April 11th, on cash bail with two sureties, legal sources said.
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‘Need to know Colombo’s stand on resuming talks’ – Thamilchelvan

[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 April 2004, 09:20 GMT]
Mr. S. P Thamilchelvan, the head of the LTTE’ political division, said Thursday that the Tigers would state their stand on for resuming the island’s stalled peace process only after Norwegians peace facilitators first find out and apprise them of Colombo’s position regarding the basis for restarting negotiations. He was speaking to the local press after meeting head of Sri Lanka’s truce monitoring mission, Maj. Gen. (ret) Trond Furuhovde in Kilinochchi.
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UNHCR IG calls for renewed focus on Sri Lanka's IDPs

[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 April 2004, 08:17 GMT]
UNHCR Inspector General Dennis McNamara Thursday called for renewed attention to the plight of Sri Lanka's hundreds of thousands of displaced persons. "It also requires greater investment to ensure that conditions in return areas are conducive to a safe and dignified return – that families are able to earn a living, send their children to school, access health facilities and live in safety”, he said in Colombo Thursday.
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Curfew in hill town, three Tamils shot dead

[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 April 2004, 07:30 GMT]
Three Tamils were killed and four were wounded when Police opened fire on crowds in Kandapola, 16 kilomtres from Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka's main hill country town and holiday resort, on Wednesday night. Curfew has been declared in the area following clashes between Tamils and Sinhalese which flared up late Wednesday afternoon over a vehicle accident in Kandapola. A senior Tamil MP of the Ceylon Workers' Congress slammed the Police for precipitating the communal violence. "The Police acted in a very partial manner", he said. Fourteen Tamil shops in Kandapola were smashed up and ransacked.
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Workshop on HIV/AIDS for Trinco media persons

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 April 2004, 20:53 GMT]
North East Provincial Ministry of Health Tuesday held a one-day workshop for media personnel in the Trincomalee district, soliciting their co-operation to create awareness among the masses in the prevention and control of HIV AIDS in the northeast. Provincial health regional epidemiologist Dr.T.Thavakodirajah addressing the workshop said northeast province has gained second place with 43 positive AIDS cases in the island.
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School uniforms not supplied to Jaffna students

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 April 2004, 19:01 GMT]
Students in the Jaffna district government schools have not received their free uniforms supplied by the line Ministry of Education even after the second term of academic year has begun. According to the Education Ministry in Colombo, all students should get their uniforms in the beginning of the year, education sources said.
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Analaitivu villagers complain of police harassment

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 April 2004, 18:07 GMT]
The Kayts Police in Jaffna district has up to now sent notices to about 35 residents of Analaitivu village to appear in the police station in regard to the alleged torching of a camp of the paramilitary Eelam People's Democratic party (EPDP) on April 11. However, five civilians who went to the Kayts Police station Wednesday morning on receipt of such notice have not returned to Analaitivu till late in the night, civil sources said.
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‘Only self-government can help safeguard NE fisheries’

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 April 2004, 16:42 GMT]
“Only when we have self-government will we be able to safeguard our fisheries resources and the lives of our fishermen,” said Dr. A. Soosai Ananthan, the Head of the Fisheries Department at the University of Jaffna, speaking at a seminar on the problems faced by fisheries workers, held at the Urumpirai Hindu College in Jaffna Sunday, the Jaffna-based Tamil language daily, Uthayan, reported Wednesday.
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JVP ministers sworn in, attend first cabinet meeting

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 April 2004, 10:46 GMT]
Eight parliamentarians of the Sinhala nationalist, Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), one of the two major constituents of the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) were sworn in before Sri Lanka's President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge as cabinet rank ministers and deputy ministers Wednesday morning around 9.30. Later they attended their first cabinet meeting at about 10 .30 a.m, political sources said.
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US Ambassador inaugurates BRAVA mission in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 April 2004, 09:05 GMT]
Mr.Jeffry J.Lunstead, US Ambassador to Sri Lanka, wednesday inaugurated the US military humanitarian medical mission in Jaffna teaching hospital. " We are able to visit Jaffna because of peace in this country. US government will continue to support the peace process in Sri Lanka," Mr.Jeffry Lunstead said at the inaugural event held on wednesday morning.
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Kalmunai Tamils prepare to welcome Amparai TNA MP

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 April 2004, 03:05 GMT]
The Tamil residents of Kalmunai are making arrangements to honor and welcome the newly elected Tamil National Alliance MP from Amparai (Digamadulla), Mr. Kanagasabai Pathmanathan, on May 5, according to Mr. E. Sivanandanayagam, a retired teacher who is the organizer for the event, sources said.
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“Sinhalese political leadership lacks maturity” - Sampanthan

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 21:20 GMT]
“The late Tamil leader, Mr.S.J.V.Chelvanayakam, laid the path for the freedom struggle, advocating Tamils should be recognized as a distinct nationality with their traditional homeland and right of self determination,” said the Tamil National Alliance parliamentary group leader, Mr.R.Sampanthan, addressing a meeting to mark the 27th death anniversary of the late Tamil leader in Trincomalee town Monday evening.
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JVP ministers, deputies to take oaths Wednesday

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 18:06 GMT]
Four cabinet rank ministers and four deputy ministers of the Sinhala nationalist cum Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), one of the two major constituents of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA), are to be sworn-in by Sri Lanka's President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, Wednesday morning at the President's House, government sources said.
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SLA prevents Muslims from resettling in Chavakachcheri

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 16:51 GMT]
The Sri Lanka army has prevented Muslim refugees who came back recently to Chavakachcheri, the second largest town of the northern peninsula, from repairing and resettling in their war-destroyed homes, a spokesman for the returnees told TamilNet Tuesday. “We have been living in refugee camps in Puttalam for many years. I arrived with my family today, hoping to restart my life here in my hometown. But the military says that it won’t vacate my house. Where do I go?” asks Mr. Ismail Sultan, 38, a businessman.
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Tyronne Fernando resigns from UNP to join UPFA

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 16:35 GMT]
Mr.Tyronne Fernando, who was a parliamentarian of the United National Party from the Moratuwa electorate and Foreign Minister in the former United National Front government, Tuesday sent in his resignation letter to the leader of the UNP, Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe. Leaders of United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) are reported to have approached Mr. Fernando to nominate him for the post of Chief Minister of the Western Provincial Council, political sources said.
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13 civilians remanded for allegedly torching EPDP camp

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 15:50 GMT]
The Kayts Magistrate, Mr.A.Premshankar, Tuesday ordered remand for thirteen suspects who were produced by the police in connection with the alleged burning down of a camp of the paramilitary Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) in Analaitivu following the April 2 general election, legal sources said.
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Nimalarajan murder inquiry report handed over to AG

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 15:31 GMT]
Mr.Ranjith de Silva, Officer-in-charge of the Special Investigation Unit of the Jaffna Police, Tuesday told Jaffna Magistrate Mr. R.T.Viknaraja that he had submitted the dossier of his inquiry into the murder of Jaffna based journalist Mr.Mylvaganam Nimalarajan to the Attorney General, legal sources said.
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Escapee details 18-year detention, torture in STF camp

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 15:17 GMT]
A Tamil youth arrested in 1986 by the Special Task Force of the Sri Lanka Army at Kaluwanchikudy in the Batticaloa district, and assumed dead, has escaped last week from an STF camp where he was held incommunicado for 18 years, and has detailed the torture and killings by the STF that took place in the camp and elsewhere to Sri Lanka’s Human Rights Commission and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), sources in Batticaloa told TamilNet.
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SLA's complicity claimed in Batticaloa murders

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 10:50 GMT]
Head of the Political Wing of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), S.P.Thamilchelvan, in a letter to the Head of Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), Major General (retd.) Trond Furuhovde, said that the murder of seven LTTE cadres including four disabled Sunday night was a violation of the Cease Fire Agreement (CFA) and that the LTTE had "credible evidence that the attackers came from the Vavunathivu SLA [Sri Lanka Army] camp direction," according to the LTTE's Peace Secretariat website.
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Batticaloa youth shot dead in Colombo

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 09:51 GMT]
Unidentified gunmen shot dead a youth and wounded another in Maligawatte, a congested suburb near downtown Colombo, Monday night around 10 p.m. Police said. The youth are from Batticaloa, according to Police sources. The gunmen who shot the youth while they were negotiating an apartment for rent in Maligawatte got away. No arrests have been made in connection with the killing, the sources said.
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UNCHR’s help sought for resettling Kevuliyamadu IDPs

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 03:56 GMT]
The people who were rendered refugees and were displaced during the war in 1985 from Kevuliyamadu in the Batticaloa district have demanded that they be allowed to resettle in their village, sources said.
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SLFP-JVP ministerial dispute resolved

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 27 April 2004, 03:28 GMT]
The politburo of the Sinhala nationalist cum Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), one of the major constituents of the ruling United Peoples' Freedom Alliance (UPFA), Monday night decided to accept one of the two proposals submitted by Sri Lanka's President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, and to bring the three week old dispute over ministerial and deputy ministerial posts to an end, political sources said.
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SL Government assistance to IDPs nil - Sampanthan

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 20:15 GMT]
"I dare say that the [Sri Lankan] government has no right to rule our people as it has failed to provide assistance to hundreds of thousands internally displaced who have been languishing in refugee camps and welfare centres to return to their lands and resettle," said the Tamil National Alliance parliamentary group leader, Mr.R.Sampanthan, addressing a meeting in Kanniya village Monday morning.
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NECORD funded development projects launched in Kanniya

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 19:35 GMT]
Foundation stones were laid Monday morning for the construction of a pre-school and a multi purpose hall in the resettled Kanniya village, located on the Trincomalee- Anuradhapura road about 8 km north of Trincomalee town. The Asian Development Bank(ADB) funded North East Community Organization for Restoration Development (NECORD) under the Community Rehabilitation Development Project (CRDP) has allocated a sum of 6.8 million rupees for these development works, and the implementing agency is the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) of Trincomalee district, sources said.
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JVP politburo meets to decide on ministerial dispute

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 16:26 GMT]
The politburo of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) began its crucial discussion Monday evening on the alternative suggestions submitted by Sri Lanka's President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, in regard to the allocation of Mahaveli Development Ministry to JVP, political sources said.
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Sri Lanka Buddhist monks’ party slams Marxists

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 16:22 GMT]
Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), the party of ultra Sinhala nationalist Buddhist monks, Monday charged that the Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga’s chief coalition partner, is planning to eliminate its leaders. Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thero, General Secretary of the JHU, told a press conference at the party’s headquarters in a plush Colombo suburb that leading monks of his party had received death threats again on Sunday night. Meanwhile thousands of posters lambasting the JHU monks appeared in Colombo during the weekend.
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Tamil youth killed in explosion in Kurunagala

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 15:49 GMT]
Mr. Kanagasabai Thurairajasingham was killed in an explosion early morning at about 3 a.m. Monday at Polathapitiya near Kurunagala town in the northwestern province. He was later identified as a member of a Tamil group, probably a supporter of the renegade Karuna group, police said Monday.
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Hidden hand behind murder of disabled cadres- LTTE

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 14:11 GMT]
“The murder of our disabled cadres is clearly the work of criminal elements that are working with the Sri Lanka army. I have requested the SLMM to arrange an early meeting with the SLA to discuss this matter. I hope this would be the last incident of this sort. No one could have gone in a van with arms at midnight in the direction of Vavunathivu without the SLA’s knowledge. There are no jungles in these parts to hide a van and armed men”, said Mr. Kousalyan, head of the political division of the Liberation Tigers for the Batticaloa-Amparai district.
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Seven Tigers killed in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 08:44 GMT]
Seven Liberation Tigers were killed by an unidentified armed group in Batticaloa Sunday night around 11.30 p.m. Four of the murdered LTTE cadres were invalids, sources said. They were killed at Ponnaankaanichenai, about 1.5 kilometres from the Sri Lanka army's point northwest of Batticaloa town. Mr. E. Kousalyan, the head of the LTTE's political division in Batticaloa told truce monitors from the eastern town that the group that killed the seven Tiger cadres had come from the direction of the Sri Lanka army camp in Vavunathivu.
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LTTE releases Sinhalese worker arrested with T-56

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 03:40 GMT]
The Tamil Eelam Police Service (TEPS) has released a Sinhalese contract worker arrested last year for carrying a concealed T-56 rifle in Paranthan to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), sources said.
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UPFA wins NWPC as Central, Uva PCs await elections

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 03:15 GMT]
The United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) won the provincial elections held Saturday for the North West Provincial Council. According to the Elections Department, the UPFA obtained 59.10% of the votes cast, winning 31 seats, and the United National Party (UNP) won 19 seats, obtaining 37.53% of the votes.
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Quiz competition to improve general knowledge of NE students

[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 02:26 GMT]
The North East Provincial Education, Cultural Affairs, Sports and Youth Affairs Ministry has organised a Science and Mathematics Quiz Competition for students from Grade 1 to Grade 11 in all twenty four-education zones in the province, in a bid to enhance the knowledge of the students in science and mathematics, provincial education sources said.
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Muttur school dropouts re-admitted with UNICEF assistance

[TamilNet, Sunday, 25 April 2004, 19:02 GMT]
The first batch of thirty seven students identified by the Child Welfare Unit of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) in Trincomalee district as school dropouts in Sinnakulam, Pallikudiruppu, Thangapuram, Santhanaveddai, Chenaiyoor, Santhosapuram and Kadatkaraichcenai in the Muttur east were re-enrolled for studies and were distributed with learning equipment and clothes for uniforms with the assistance of the UNICEF at an event held at Chenaiyoor Central College Friday to mark the World Education Awareness Day.
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US ambassador to visit Jaffna

[TamilNet, Sunday, 25 April 2004, 18:29 GMT]
Mr.Jeffry Lunstead, the United States Ambassador in Sri Lanka, is to make an official visit to Jaffna Wednesday to open the free surgical unit in the Jaffna Teaching Hospital, which is to be conducted by the US army medical service, sources said.
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Violence against JHU monks increases

[TamilNet, Sunday, 25 April 2004, 18:25 GMT]
The attack on Buddhist shrines and intimidation against monks of the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) is on the increase in the southern part of the country since the election of new Speaker of Sri Lanka's parliament. JHU leadership has accused the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) activists are encouraging such incidents for voting for the opposition candidate in the Speaker's election, sources said.
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UPFA minister visits Jaffna district

[TamilNet, Sunday, 25 April 2004, 18:23 GMT]
Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government Mr. Janaka Bandara Tennekon Sunday paid a visit to Jaffna district. He was the first minister of the newly formed United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government to visit Jaffna, sources said.
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LTTE to await official word from Norway on peace process

[TamilNet, Sunday, 25 April 2004, 03:37 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers will inform their stand on resuming the peace process if the Norwegian government officially informs the LTTE about the Sri Lankan government's stand, Mr. Daya Master, the media coordinator of the LTTE, told the Tamil media on Saturday. Meanwhile, sources quoting the Norwegian Embassy in Colombo say a high level delegation of the Norwegian government will visit Colombo in the first week of May to hold discussions with the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE.
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Thuraineelavani GCE (O/L) students honored

[TamilNet, Sunday, 25 April 2004, 03:03 GMT]
Students from Thuraineelavani, 29 km south of Batticaloa town, who sat for the GCE (Ordinary Level) Exams in 2003 and obtained excellent grades will be honored Sunday at the Thuraineelavanai Maha Vidiyalayam, sources said.
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USAID funds Non-violent skills training for Trinco youths

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 April 2004, 18:07 GMT]
A training programme on Non-violent Communication Skills for Youths was inaugurated Saturday in the Trincomalee campus of the Eastern University with the financial support of the USAID. Ms Brenda Barret, Regional Programme Officer of the USAID in Trincomalee district was the chief guest at the occasion, sources said.
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SLFP, JVP to meet Sunday over ministerial dispute

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 April 2004, 17:10 GMT]
Senior leaders of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), two major constituents of the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) are scheduled to meet Sunday in the President's House to take a final decision on the dispute over the allocation of ministries to the JVP, government sources said. The dispute marked a tumultous beginning to UPFA government and has raised questions on the ability of the Alliance to focus on governance.
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Conference against war held in Colombo

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 April 2004, 14:20 GMT]
Members of National Anti-War Front, a coalition of more than one hundred Sinhala peace movements across Sri Lanka, in a conference held in Colombo yesterday, expressed their opposition to war and resolved to raise public awareness against a return to a state of war, a popular Canadian radio broadcast said.
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JHU parliamentarian complains of intimidation by unidentified group

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 April 2004, 10:22 GMT]
Venerable Omalpe Sobitha Thera, Deputy Leader of the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) parliamentary group Saturday lodged a complaint with the Embilipitya Police, down south of the country that a group unidentified persons covering their faces came to his Bodhirajarama Dharmajaye Vihare, tied black flags in the temple premises and intimidated the inmates, police said.
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Youth arrested with grenade in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 April 2004, 04:49 GMT]
A youth carrying a hand grenade and live ammunition in a fertilizer bag was arrested Thursday by Sri Lanka Army and Police personnel in Main Road at Mavadivembu, about 22 km northwest of Baticaloa town, sources said.
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Crisis within UPFA deepens over Mahaveli Ministry

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 18:04 GMT]
The crisis within the United People’s Freedom Alliance over the allocation of ministries to the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) deepened Friday, with the General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party, Mr.Maithiripala Sirisena, asserting that the allocation of four ministries to the JVP was consistent with a pre-poll agreement between the leaders of the SLFP and the JVP in forming the alliance.
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UPFA accuses JHU of joining hands with TNA

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 16:52 GMT]
The leaders of Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), the main constituents of the ruling United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA), jointly addressing a press conference Friday, said that the "true form" of the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) has been revealed in parliament when its two parliamentarians voted in the Speaker's election with the main opposition United National Front, thereby "joining hands" with the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), media sources said.
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Anandasangaree case goes to Supreme Court

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 16:12 GMT]
Mr.R.Sampanthan and Mr. Joseph Pararajasingham, the Secretary General and the Senior Vice President of the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) respectively, Friday filed an application in Sri Lanka’s Supreme Court, seeking an order to suspend the interim injunction issued by the District Court of Colombo preventing them from holding the central working committee or any other meeting of the TULF without the approval of Mr. V.Anandasangaree, President of the party, legal sources said.
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NEP Basic Sector Education cell opened in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 14:54 GMT]
A cell has been opened in the North East Provincial Ministry of Education, Cultural Affairs, Sports and Youth Affairs to co-ordinate the activities of the Basic Education Sector Programme (BESP), which is a joint venture of both the Sri Lankan Ministry of Education and the German Technical Co-operation (GTZ). NEPC Chief Secretary Mr.S.Rangarajah, who declared open the cell, said the cell should become a Provincial Institute of Education (PIE) in the future, education sources said.
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Sri Lanka's President betrayed renegade commander - JHU

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 10:31 GMT]
The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) blasted the Sri Lanka Government for the pandemonium caused in Parliament on Friday, and asked Ms.Kumaratunge's government to take responsibility for its defeat. Although the JHU assured Ms.Kumaratunge of their votes, her betrayal of renegade Eastern Commander forced them to decide against supporting her, JHU said in a press conference held in Colombo today. JHU further said that its members would willingly sacrifice their lives to prevent the creation of Tamil Eelam.
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Kumaratunga requests Norway to resume facilitation

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 08:37 GMT]
Sri Lanka's President Chandrika Kumaratunga phoned Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik Thursday evening and requested Norway to resume its role as a third party facilitator in the peace process between the government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), said a press release issued by the Norwegian Prime Ministers Office in Oslo Friday. Norway, however, said it would resume its role as facilitator if the LTTE also made a similar request to Oslo. Norway said it was temporarily withdrawing from Sri Lanka's peace process in November last year.
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LTTE attends to problems of residents in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 00:49 GMT]
The Batticaloa district has returned to normal after the renegade Karuna group’s activities in the district were brought to an end, and the LTTE is asking the public to contact them over any problems the residents may have, sources said.
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Unidentified persons torch TNA MP’s office in Amparai

[TamilNet, Friday, 23 April 2004, 00:01 GMT]
The Karaitivu office of the Amparai district Tamil National Alliance parliamentarian, Mr. M. Pathmanatahn, was set fire by unidentified persons on Wednesday night, sources in Amparai said.
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Procedure prevents TNA MP from attending parliament

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 20:18 GMT]
Mr. Pakiaselvam Ariyanethiran, who will be replacing Mr. Kingsley Rajanayakam, the TNA MP elected from the Batticaloa district who resigned his seat last week, did not attend Sri Lanka’s parliament when it opened on Thursday, as the Elections Commissioner will have to officially gazette his name, sources said.
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LTTE hands over 6 cadres to parents in Vavuniya

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 17:29 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers in Vavuniya on Wednesday handed over six youths, who had joined the LTTE a few months back on their own, to their parents, sources said.
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Uproar in parliament follows election of Speaker

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 14:49 GMT]
Pandemonium reigned in Sri Lanka’s parliament Thursday night after the election of the new Speaker and when the leaders of Tamil National Alliance (TNA) and the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) made speeches congratulating the new Speaker, Mr.W.J.M.Lokkubandara.
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Opposition candidate Lokubandara elected Speaker

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 13:34 GMT]
Mr.W.J.M.Lokkubandara of the main opposition United National Front was elected Speaker of Sri Lanka's thirteenth parliament Thursday in the final round of re-poll by a one-vote margin. He polled 110 votes and his rival Mr.D.E.W.Gunasekara of the ruling party United People's Freedom Alliance polled 109 votes, Secretary General of the Parliament, Ms. Priyani Wijesekara, announced Thursday at about 7:25 p.m.
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Fourth poll to select SL Parliament Speaker finally begins

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 11:11 GMT]
Fourth poll (3rd re-poll) to elect sixteenth Speaker of the Sri Lanka's thirteenth parliament finally began Thursday around five p.m. with the arrival of fresh stock of ballot papers from the Government printer as the earlier stocks held by parliamentary officials were exhausted in holding three unsuccessful polls due to crisis between the ruling and the main opposition party, parliamentary media sources said.
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Sri Lanka's Speaker's election delayed due to shortage of ballot papers

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 10:50 GMT]
Ms Priyani Wijesekara, Secretary General of Sri Lanka parliament Thursday afternoon ordered the Government Printer to send two sets of ballot papers to parliament to replenish her stocks so that fourth round of poll to the post of Speaker can be conducted. Meanwhile Ms.Wijesekara, Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse and the leader of the opposition Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe are locked in serious discussion to resolve the crisis in conducting Speaker's election, parliamentary media sources said.
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Youth attacked in Vavuniya

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 10:36 GMT]
Rajendrakumar (26), a resident of Marambaikulam in Vavuniya district, was severely beaten by unknown assailants at his home yesterday, sources in Vavuniya said. He has been admitted to the Anuradhapura hospital and is receiving treatment for his injuries, hospital sources said.
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Pandemonium reigns in SL parliament, UPFA MPs grab ballot box

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 09:04 GMT]
Pandemonium reigns in Sri Lanka's thirteenth parliament in electing its sixteenth Speaker when the re-poll commenced around 2.20 p.m. Thursday as ordered by the Secretary General Ms Priyani Wijesekara. As the UPFA parliamentarians seated surrounding the Speaker's Chamber keeping the ballot box with them and some sitting on the ballot box they earlier grabbed from the parliamentary staff the Secretary General of the parliament is still struggling to bring the tense situation under control, sources said.
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Sri Lanka's parliament Speaker contest ends in tie

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 07:48 GMT]
Second round of voting to elect the sixteenth Speaker of Sri Lanka's Parliament is expected to be held Thursday afternoon as the two candidates contesting for the post of Speaker received 108 votes each in the first round of voting with seven parliamentarians abstaining and with one vote being rejected, parliamentary sources said.
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Missing Bhikku parliamentarians attend new Parliament opening

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 04:50 GMT]
The first session of the thirteenth Parliament of Sri Lanka began Thursday morning around 10 am in a tense atmosphere to elect its sixteenth Speaker since independence.
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TNA MP responds to the needs of Batticaloa village

[TamilNet, Thursday, 22 April 2004, 02:50 GMT]
Mr. S. Jeyanandamoorthy, the Tamil National Alliance member of parliament from the Batticaloa district, on Sunday visited Thuraineelavani, a village 29 km south of Batticaloa town, in the Manmunai division, to thank the constituents for electing him and to listen to the needs of the village, sources said.
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Two JHU Bhikku parliamentarians said missing

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 20:16 GMT]
The mystery over two missing Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) parliamentarians took a dramatic turn Wednesday when the leadership of the JHU threatened the ruling United Peoples' Freedom Alliance that it would not support the UPFA government even if it brought progressive pieces of legislation in the new parliament, political sources said.
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UPFA's first cabinet meeting held without JVP ministers

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 19:01 GMT]
The optimism expressed by some senior leaders of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) that row over the allocation to the Mahaveli Development Ministry was close to a settlement evaporated Wednesday evening as the leaderships of Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) and Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) failed to accept the compromise, political sources said.
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SLA bars Muslim IDP families from resettling in Chavakachcheri

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 18:17 GMT]
Five internally displaced Muslim families with about twenty-five members who returned to Jaffna from Puttalam recently for resettlement have been staying in the damaged Jumma Mosque in the Chavakachcheri town in Thenmaradchchi division as the Sri Lanka Army has refused permission to them to occupy their houses. Their houses are located in the high security zones of the army, civil sources said.
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LTTE criticizes UNICEF over recent statements

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 16:57 GMT]
Mr. S.P. Thamilchelvan, the political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, has expressed disappointment with the UNICEF in a letter on Monday to the resident representative of the organization in Sri Lanka, Mr. Ted Chaiban, over the UNICEF's ‘vocal’ criticism of the LTTE on the issue of child soldiers, arguing that the UNICEF, while being vocal on the issue, has failed in its obligations under an Action Plan agreed upon by both parties in addressing the community needs and to support the released underaged cadres.
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"No cross-over from UNP to UPFA" - Ranil

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 15:39 GMT]
Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe, former Prime Minister and the leader of the United National Party (UNP) Wednesday dismissed media reports that few parliamentarians of the main opposition United National Front (UNF) are to cross over to the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) as baseless and untrue.
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TNA MPs to attend parliament in traditional attire

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 13:32 GMT]
The 22 Tamil National Alliance members of parliament are planning to attend the first sitting of Sri Lanka’s parliament on Thursday in traditional Tamil attire, sources in the Vanni said.
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New surgical unit commissioned in Trinco general hospital

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 09:57 GMT]
A modern surgical unit installed with central air-conditioning plant constructed at a cost 7.7 million rupees in the Trincomalee General Hospital was commissioned Tuesday by the NEPC Health Ministry Mr.R.M.S.Ratnayake. This was the first time in the northeast province a hospital that comes under the provincial ministry of health was provided with such facility, provincial health officials said.
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SLFP-JVP close to resolving Mahaveli Ministry row

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 21 April 2004, 07:50 GMT]
Senior leaders of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance Wednesday expressed optimism that the three week old quarrel between the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) and Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) regarding the allocation of Mahaweli Development ministry to the JVP minister designate for Agriculture is likely to be resolved this evening, political sources said.
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Resettlers in Thenmaradchchi HSZ to get livelihood assistance

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 20 April 2004, 21:55 GMT]
The Jaffna District Secretary and Government Agent, Mr.S.Pathmanathan, Tuesday directed his officials to expedite the payment of livelihood assistance to resettled internally displaced families in the high security zones in Thenmaradchi division in Jaffna district, authoritative sources said.
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Countdown begins for election of Sri Lanka’s Speaker

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 20 April 2004, 18:19 GMT]
The first meeting of the Sri Lanka’s thirteenth parliament is to be held on Thursday morning with the election of a new Speaker as the first item in the agenda The two major political parties, the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) and the United National Party (UNP), are actively engaged in garnering the support of small parties to prove their majority in the election of new Speaker, parliamentary sources said.
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‘No force can destroy Tamil unity’ -Ramanan

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 20 April 2004, 15:01 GMT]
“Our national leader has deep love for our people and land, and our people, likewise, are committed to Tamil unity and remain loyal to the national leader. The people of Batticaloa-Amparai have shown that no force can destroy Tamil unity now,” said a senior commander of the Liberation Tigers, Mr. Ramanan, speaking at the 16th year death anniversary of Annai (Mother) Poopathy, held Monday at the Navalady memorial for the late Tamil activist mother in Batticaloa town, sources said.
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TNA MPs, Pirapaharan discuss peace talks, ISGA

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 20 April 2004, 10:33 GMT]
“The Tamil people voted for you on the basis of the principles of Tamil nationalism. You should understand their feelings and work to realise their aspirations. Love for one’s country comes from one’s love for home, family, village and region. In this sense I encouraged love for one’s region, as it is necessary to strengthen a liberation struggle. But it is dangerous when the affection for one's region is exploited for selfish motives”, said Mr. Velupillai Pirapaharan, speaking to 22 MPs of the Tamil National Alliance at the LTTE’s political division headquarters in Kilinochchi Tuesday.
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TNA MPs meet Pirapaharan

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 20 April 2004, 05:26 GMT]
Newly elected MPs of the Tamil National Alliance met the leader of the Liberation Tigers for discussions Tuesday in Kilinochchi. The TNA twenty two MPs will hold a press conference Tuesday afternoon to explain the policies and plans of the alliance, LTTE officials said.
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NECORD strengthens northeast rural banking system

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 20 April 2004, 02:24 GMT]
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) funded North East Community Restoration Development (NECORD) Project Director Mr.T.Lankaneson Monday signed agreements with the Presidents of nine district multi purpose co-operative societies to strengthen the co-operative rural banking system in the NorthEast. NECORD officials hope to revive the rural economy of the war torn province, sources said.
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Tamil NGOs aid rehabilitation of homeland - LTTE

[TamilNet, Monday, 19 April 2004, 22:40 GMT]
Three organizations registered as legal Non-Governmental Organizations in Sri Lanka and in the North-East are contributing in a major way to the rehabilitation, reconstruction and humanitarian work in the Tamil homeland, the Liberation Tigers said in a statement Monday.
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Annai Poopathi remembered in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Monday, 19 April 2004, 21:12 GMT]
Annai Poopathi sacrificed her life for the emancipation of Tamil people in the northeast province, said the Tamil National Alliance national list parliamentarian, Mr.M.K.Eelaventhan, addressing the death anniversary celebration of Annai Poopathi held Monday at the Colonel Kittu mausoleum, located at Muththirai Santhi in Jaffna town.
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EPDP activist remanded in Kayts murder incident

[TamilNet, Monday, 19 April 2004, 19:16 GMT]
The Kayts Magistrate, Mr. A.Premashankar, Saturday remanded Mr. Thirugnanam Sivakumar alias Velu, a key member of the paramilitary Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP), till May 1st, in connection with the murder last year of a young woman, legal sources said Monday.
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'Peace process has not helped the war-affected' - Thamilchelvan

[TamilNet, Monday, 19 April 2004, 19:10 GMT]
Despite the two and a half years of ceasefire, the people affected by the war in the Tamil homeland have not been able to return to their normal lives, and the Liberation Tigers consider this a setback in the peace process, said Mr. S.P. Thamilchelvan, the political head of the LTTE, speaking as a special guest at the North-East Economic Advisory Council’s conference in the Vanni Monday, sources said.
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Batticaloa-Amparai TNA MPs to meet Thamilchelvan

[TamilNet, Monday, 19 April 2004, 10:36 GMT]
Batticaloa-Amparai Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Members of Parliament (MPs) are travelling to Vanni today to meet with LTTE Head of the Political Section, S.P.Thamilchelvan, Tuesday, sources in Batticaloa said.
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Constituent Assembly illegal - Don

[TamilNet, Monday, 19 April 2004, 01:20 GMT]
"There is no legal basis for establishing a constituent assembly. In fact, Article 76(1) of the Constitution states that parliament shall not abdicate or alienate its legislative power, and shall not set up any authority with any legislative power. It is, therefore, expressly prohibited to set up a constituent assembly for the purpose of making law," said Professor emeritus Nihal Jayawickrama in an interview with Sunday Leader, a popular Colombo weekly.
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SLMM head meets Trinco SLN, SLA Commanders

[TamilNet, Sunday, 18 April 2004, 13:01 GMT]
Major General (retd) Trond Furuhovde Saturday paid a visit to Trincomalee to assess the ground situation in the east port district following recent military operation by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) ousting its renegade commander from the eastern region, sources said. He met with Sri Lanka Army (SLA) and Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) commanders during his visit, according to security sources.
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NorthEast to observe Annai Poopathi anniversary

[TamilNet, Sunday, 18 April 2004, 11:01 GMT]
Arrangements have been made in several parts of NorthEast to celebrate the 16th death anniversary of Annai Poopathi on Monday (April 19). She died after fasting for 31 days from 19 March 1988 demanding that the Indian government should stop the war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and initiate talks with the LTTE.
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Pannalai resettled complain of SLA harassment

[TamilNet, Sunday, 18 April 2004, 09:55 GMT]
Eight Internally Displaced (IDP) families now resettled in no man zones located beyond 600 meter of the High Security Zones (HSZs) in Pannalai, Valigamam north in the Jaffna district Sunday complained that the soldiers of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) manning checkpoints and camps in the area have started harassing them with an intention of ousting them from their dwellings, civil society sources in Jaffna said.
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40 underaged Trinco LTTE cadres released to UNICEF

[TamilNet, Saturday, 17 April 2004, 14:17 GMT]
40 under-aged cadres of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were released to UNICEF at the LTTE political office in Sampoor, Trincomalee today, UNICEF officials said. Special committee appointed by the LTTE to review an under-age list submitted to them by the UNICEF made the determination that the released 31 girls and 9 boys joined the LTTE using false documentation saying that they were 18 or older.
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Col.Bhanu, Col.Sornam meet with Batticaloa residents

[TamilNet, Saturday, 17 April 2004, 12:24 GMT]
Senior military Commanders of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, Col.Bhanu and Col.Sornam, who played leading roles in the ouster of renegade commander Karuna from Batticaloa, visited several areas in Batticaloa and met with local residents Friday, reports from Batticaloa said.
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NECORD to revive rural bank system in northeast

[TamilNet, Saturday, 17 April 2004, 00:01 GMT]
The Asian Development Bank (ADB)-funded North East Community Organization for Restoration and Development (NECORD) has formulated a scheme at a cost 10.4 million rupees in collaboration with North East Provincial Department of Co-operatives to strengthen the co-operative rural banks in the war-torn province, thus reviving the rural economy devastated in the two-decade-old war, sources said.
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Ban deprives fishermen of livelihood in Thenmaradchi

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 18:31 GMT]
The continuous ban by the Sri Lanka Army on fishing using mechanized boats from the Kilali Sea in Thenmaradchi area in the Jaffna district to the Jaffna lagoon near Colombagam area, which comes under the Jaffna municipal limit, has left more than five hundred fisher families in abject poverty, fisheries society sources complained Friday.
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Two highly decomposed bodies recovered in Jaffna town

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 17:42 GMT]
The Jaffna Police Friday evening recovered highly decomposed bodies of two men from the drainage located behind the Windsor Theater in the heart of Jaffna town. One body was identified as that of a jeweler, Nadarajah Sathiyalingam,43, of Vannarponnai; the other body was not identified till Friday night, sources said.
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‘Karuna’s colleagues are returning’- Col. Ramesh

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 16:15 GMT]
“We will not punish or victimise or persecute anyone who has been associated with Karuna in his traitorous activities. Our leader has instructed us to take a strictly humanitarian approach in dealing with this issue. Karuna’s colleagues who fled the district four days ago are contacting us now. They are all coming back. We would soon restore the law and order system and the judiciary”, said Col. Thambirajah Ramesh, LTTE’s special commander for the Batticaloa-Amparai district speaking to TamilNet at the ‘Meenaham’ military base Friday.
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Karuna and associates escorted by SLA - Thamil Alai

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 15:29 GMT]
The fleeing renegade Eastern commander Mr. Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan (alias Karuna) and his associates were seen running into the Mavadivembu camp of the Sri Lanka Army, and from there were escorted in the direction of Polanaruwa, the Thamil Alai newspaper published from the East said Friday, quoting eyewitnesses among the public.
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TNA censures SL President over ministerial post to EPDP

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 14:55 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance parliamentary group Friday censured the action of Sri Lanka's President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, in appointing a person rejected by the Tamil people in the April 2nd poll in charge of a ministry important to Tamils, disregarding the overwhelming mandate obtained by the TNA for the establishment of the Interim Self Governing Authority in the Northeast, TNA sources said.
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'Don't re-recruit released underage LTTE cadres' -UNICEF

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 13:19 GMT]
UNICEF Friday called on the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to ensure that released underage cadres are not re-recruited. “The LTTE must commit itself to not re-recruiting any of the children that have left the organization in the wake of last week’s fighting,” the UNICEF said in a press release.
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TNA MPs to meet Thamilchelvan Tuesday

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 12:58 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians will meet Mr.S.P.Thamilchelvan, political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, in Kilinochchi on Tuesday, April 20th, at 10 a.m., TNA sources said. A decision to this effect was taken at the TNA parliamentary group meeting held Friday at the parliamentary complex.
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Amparai Tamils praised for rejecting regionalism

[TamilNet, Friday, 16 April 2004, 09:30 GMT]
Kanagasabai Pathmanathan, the Tamil National Alliance MP for Digamadulla (Amparai) district, in a memorandum released to the Tamil people of his district, praised the Amparai Tamil people for rejecting regionalism and showing the international community that Liberation Tigers are the undisputed leaders of the Tamil people, local daily Thamil Alai reported.
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UPFA MPs to hold first group meeting on April 17

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 April 2004, 17:53 GMT]
The first parliamentary group meeting of the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) is scheduled to be held on April 17, coinciding with the birthday of the late Prime Minister of Sri lanka, Ms.Srimavo Bandaranaike, the mother of the President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, sources said.
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Protest in Thampalakamam over lack of medical officers

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 April 2004, 16:50 GMT]
Hundreds of residents, men and women, Thursday held a picketing campaign in front of the district government hospital in Thampalakamam, an agricultural village located about 27 km southwest of Trincomalee town, protesting against the failure of the health administration to fill several vacancies for medical officers, sources said
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SL Police attack IDPs at Vavuniya Welfare Center

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 April 2004, 16:06 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s police and home guards on Tuesday intervened in a private family quarrel and attacked a father and son with knives and an axe at the Sithamaparapuram Welfare center for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Vavuniya, and the victims were admitted at the Vavuniya hospital, sources in Vavuniya said.
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"International community accepts LTTE as Tamils’ saviour”-Gajendran

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 April 2004, 15:24 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian from the Jaffna district, Mr.S.Gajendran, said Thursday that the international community has accepted that the Liberation Tigers’ military wing safeguards and protects the Tamil people. "Because of this," said the TNA MP, "the international community remained silent, watching the events that took place when the LTTE launched its military operation to retrieve the areas from its renegade commander ('Karuna')."
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SLA denies giving protection to fleeing renegade

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 April 2004, 14:03 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Army (SLA) Thursday denied reports in the Colombo-based media that SLA forces provided escort to the renegade commander Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan known as Karuna to a destination in Colombo when he fled from his hideouts in the eastern province following a military operation by the Liberation Tigers against him, sources said.
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LTTE, SLA agree to restore relations in Batticaloa-Amparai

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 April 2004, 12:24 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers and the Sri Lanka army held discussions Wednesday afternoon on restoring relations in the Batticaloa and Amparai districts in Vavunathivu, 5 kilometres northwest of the Batticaloa town. Col. Thambirajah Ramesh, the Special Commander for the Batticaloa-Amparai District, led the LTTE delegation. Head of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission, Maj. Gen. (ret) Tronde Furuhovde chaired the meeting. Asked whether the issue of renegade LTTE commander Karuna’s whereabouts was raised at the meeting, Col. Ramesh and Maj. Gen. (ret) Furuhovde replied in the negative.
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Araiyampathy mourns native son Lt. Col. Neelan

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 April 2004, 04:17 GMT]
The body of the deputy head of intelligence of the Liberation Tigers for the Batticaloa district, Lt. Col. Neelan, who was killed by the fleeing renegade Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan (‘Karuna’), was brought to his home village, Araiyampathy, Wednesday, and kept at the Ramakrishna Mission school hall where the public paid its respects in large numbers, sources said.
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LTTE says no more underage cadres in Batti-Amparai

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 16:46 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers said Wednesday that they have released all underage (under 18) cadres in the Batticaloa-Amparai districts to their parents, including all those the UNICEF had reported in its list as under-aged recruits.
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Post election violence continues in Jaffna islets

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 16:15 GMT]
Violence is on the increase in the islets of Jaffna district after the general election held on April 2. Several people were injured in clashes that took place on the Tamil-Sinhala New Year Day (April 13) at Thambatti area in Kayts between members of public and the paramilitary Eelam People's Democratic party (EPDP), police said
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JVP ministers likely to be sworn in this week

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 15:43 GMT]
The four Cabinet rank ministers and other four deputy ministers of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) are likely to be sworn in on Thursday or Friday as all disputes between the JVP and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), regarding the allocation of subjects under the ministries designated for them have been patched up for now, political sources said.
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All TNA parliamentarians to visit Kilinochchi Friday

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 15:01 GMT]
All the twenty-two Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians are expected to meet the political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Mr.S.P.Thamilchelvan, Friday in Kilinochchi, sources in the Vanni said Wednesday.
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Karuna's associate returns to LTTE

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 14:51 GMT]
Mr.Visu (Sinnathamby Gopalan), who was appointed as the political head of the Karuna group in Batticaloa and Amparai districts by the renegade commander Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan when he broke away from the Liberation Tigers, rejoined the LTTE Wednesday afternoon in Batticaloa town, sources said.
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LTTE mourns cadres killed by fleeing renegade

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 13:59 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam Wednesday officially announced that their deputy head of the Batticaloa intelligence unit, Lt.Colonel Neelan (Sinnathamby), was shot dead by the "traitorous" Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan alias Karuna on April 12 before he fled his jungle hideouts in the Batticaloa district, sources said.
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Four Karuna group cadres further remanded

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 13:23 GMT]
The Batticalo Magistrate, Mr. H.H.M. Ajmeer, on Wednesday ordered further remand until April 27 to the four cadres of the renegade Karuna group who were arrested by Sri Lanka police on March 31 with weapons on the Kalmunai-Batticaloa road, sources in Batticaloa said.
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Trinco Lions Club donates mosquito nets to students

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 14 April 2004, 00:01 GMT]
The Thirukoneswaram (Trinco) Lions Club has donated a consignment of mosquito nets to Tamil students who come from poor families and are being assisted by the Trincomalee Students Welfare Fund to pursue their education from Grade one to university level. The distribution of mosquito nets took place at a function held in the Trincomalee Vigneswara Maha Vidiyalayam recently under the auspices of Trincomalee Students Welfare Fund, sources said.
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Kausalyan explains retrieval with minimal bloodshed

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 16:36 GMT]
The political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam for the Batticaloa-Amparai region, Mr. Kausalyan, speaking to press persons in Vakarai Tuesday, said that the retrieval of the region from the renegade Karuna group was made according to the plans of the LTTE leader, Mr. V. Pirapaharan, and executed with care and humanitarian concern by commanders led by the Special Commander for the region, Mr. T. Ramesh.
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Batticaloa residents express happiness over end of tensions

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 15:58 GMT]
The residents of the Batticaloa-Amparai district have expressed happiness over the end of the tensions caused by the renegade Karuna group in the region. The people are celebrating the Tamil New Year with relief, sources in Batticaloa said.
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LTTE hands over 269 cadres to their parents in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 14:53 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) said Tuesday that it has handed over 269 of its cadres, including 168 who are less than eighteen years old, to their parents when they rejoined the LTTE following the LTTE's recovery of the Batticaloa-Amparai areas from the breakaway faction led by Mr. Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan (Karuna), Vanni sources said.
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‘No trace of ‘Karuna’ in Batticaloa’s interior’ – LTTE commanders

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 14:23 GMT]
Special Forces commanders of the Liberation Tigers in Batticaloa told TamilNet Tuesday that all the LTTE military camps in the district’s interior have been completely checked and cleared. “We have recovered the Batticaloa-Amparai district armoury fully, except for a heavy mortar and some rifles. The ammunition stores are intact”, one of them said. He said that they found several vehicles set on fire in ‘Meenaham’, the LTTE’s largest military base in the east.
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Kathiraveli battle dead named

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 10:23 GMT]
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam yesterday named its three fighters who were killed in the 9th April Kathiravelli battle against cadres loyal to Renegade LTTE commander ‘Karuna,' Mr. Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan, Jaffna daily Uthayan reported.
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SLA manufactured 'BUFFEL' to be used in NorthEast

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 09:40 GMT]
Five armored personnel vehicles (APV) manufactured locally by the Sri Lanka Army's Regiment of Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Unit in Sri Lanka are to be handed over to the Special Task Force (STF) fleet of the Sri Lanka Police Thursday. These APVs known as Buffel are to be utilized in the northeast province for the use of government troops, the State controlled English daily the Daily News reported in its Tuesday issue.
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Hindu Council appeals for Peace in New Year message

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 09:28 GMT]
The All Ceylon Hindu Congress (ACHC) Tuesday in its New Year Day message appealed to the Sri Lanka Government and the opposition to evolve a lasting political solution that would satisfy the aspirations of the Tamil-speaking people to work towards a ensuring permanent peace in Sri Lanka.
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"Early election if UNP, UPFA failed to reach consensus" - Buddhist prelate warns

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 07:57 GMT]
The Mahanayake Thera of Asgiriya Chapter the Most Venerable Buddharakita said Tuesday that the country is at risk facing another general election within a short time if the leaders of the two major political parties which have not obtained majority in the recent poll failed to arrive at a consensus to find solutions to burning problems of the country.
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Election to six provincial councils on one day

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 07:35 GMT]
Sri Lankaís President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge is seriously considering a proposal to hold elections to six provincial councils (excluding northwest) in the south of the country on one day. She is to begin talks next week with leaders and secretaries of various political parties in this regard. Already the election to northwestern provincial council has been fixed for April 24th, political sources said.
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Attempts to avert major showdown between JVP-SLFP

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 13 April 2004, 07:33 GMT]
Sri Lanka's President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge has appointed a five-member committee with the Prime Minister Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse at the helm in a bid to resolve the crisis within the recently formed United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government following differences between the major constituents, the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), political sources said.
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Tamil New Year Day to be held in Vavuniya

[TamilNet, Monday, 12 April 2004, 17:13 GMT]
A provincial level Tamil New Year Day celebration organized by the North East Provincial Education and Cultural Ministry in collaboration with the Vavuniya Suththananda Hindu Young Men Association, called in Tamil as " SITHIRAPAVAI," is to be held in Vavuniya on April 16th, sources said. The Tamil-Sinhala New Year Day dawns on Tuesday (April 13th).
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Arjuna Ranatunge resigns from all posts in SLFP

[TamilNet, Monday, 12 April 2004, 14:07 GMT]
Parliamentarian Mr.Arjuna Ranatunge, former captain of the Sri Lanka cricket team when it won the World Cup in the year 1996, Sunday said he has resigned from all posts in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party, main constituent of the United People's Freedom Alliance. He has been holding the post of party organizer for Kotte electorate and the leader of the SLFP youth wing. His decision to quit from these posts came as a protest for not getting the sports ministry portfolio in the new UPFA government, political sources said.
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JVP on warpath with SLFP over ministerial portfolios

[TamilNet, Monday, 12 April 2004, 13:39 GMT]
The General Secretary of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), Mr.Tilvin Silva has written to Sri Lanka's President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, to summon the executive committee of the the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA), of which the JVP is a major constituent, immediately to sort out all problems that have arisen over the appointment of Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse as Prime Minister and the nonallocation of "vital subjects" for ministries offered to JVP parliamentarians, political sources said.
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Renegade LTTE Commander flees jungle base

[TamilNet, Monday, 12 April 2004, 10:42 GMT]
Renegade LTTE commander ‘Karuna,' Mr. Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan, has fled his jungle base north west of Batticaloa accompanied by a small number of his closest supporters and bodyguards, Sivagnanam Karikalan, a senior leader of the Liberation Tigers from the east, who is currently visiting Switzerland, told TamilNet. According to unconfirmed reports, Mr. Muraleetharan has sought refuge in a Sri Lankan military camp in the adjacent district of Polonnaruwa. Military sources in Colombo declined to confirm the reports.
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LTTE forces move into Batticaloa's hinterland

[TamilNet, Monday, 12 April 2004, 06:37 GMT]
Liberation Tigers moved into the entire areas south west of Batticaloa town Monday. Several military units of the LTTE, which moved from different directions, took control of Kokkadichcholai around Monday noon. Karuna Group's propaganda organ, Tamil Alai office and the Press were taken over by members of the LTTE's political division who also moved into the area. Meanwhile hundreds of male and female cadres from Renegade LTTE Commander Karuna's main base, Meenakam, began arriving in their villages from Monday morning.
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SLN harasses civilians travelling to Jaffna islets

[TamilNet, Sunday, 11 April 2004, 16:36 GMT]
Residents of islets in the Jaffna district Sunday made complaints to the authorities concerned that Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) personnel manning entry check points at Allaipitty and Kayts Kannagai Amman jetty have started harassing civilians following the general election held last week, sources said.
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US Congress team arrives in Colombo

[TamilNet, Sunday, 11 April 2004, 15:31 GMT]
A bipartisan delegation from the House of Representatives of the United States of America arrived in Colombo Sunday and held discussions with Sri Lanka's new Prime Minister, Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse, Sri Lankan government sources said.
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Battle lines drawn for election of Sri Lanka's Speaker

[TamilNet, Sunday, 11 April 2004, 15:10 GMT]
Battle lines are drawn by the two major political parties, the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) and the United National Party (UNP), which have failed to obtain absolute majority in the general election on April 2, to show their strength when the thirteenth parliament is scheduled to meet on April 22 to elect the Speaker, political sources said.
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LTTE recovers arms, cadres from Karuna group

[TamilNet, Sunday, 11 April 2004, 14:31 GMT]
In commando style attacks on the Karuna group in Vakarai, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam have recovered large quantities of arms and a large number of cadres, the ThamilAlai.com website (a shadow edition from the East of the Karuna group's TamilAlai) said.
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JHU rejects Peace Process, Norway Facilitation

[TamilNet, Sunday, 11 April 2004, 13:31 GMT]
"We totally reject the present peace process as we believe it will only lead to the division of this country. We also reject the facilitation of Norway because it is partial towards the LTTE," said Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) Propaganda Secretary Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thera while outlining the basis of his party's position in backing the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government, in an interview that appeared in today's weekly Sunday Times in Colombo.
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LTTE forces move into Amparai, Batticaloa south

[TamilNet, Sunday, 11 April 2004, 04:44 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers took control of the areas held by the Karuna Group in the Amparai District on Saturday night. Troops led by the LTTE's Amparai district military commander, 'Janarthan', moved into the main base areas in Kanjikudichcha Aaru region, about 96 kilometres south of Batticaloa, from Saturday evening, sources said. Meanwhile, advance commando teams of the LTTE moved into the southwestern sector of the Batticaloa district and began consolidating strategic positions there since Saturday morning.
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UNICEF, Japan strengthen Jaffna health services

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 19:31 GMT]
UNICEF Jaffna Field Office head Ms.Judith Bruno and Jaffna District Assistant Director of Planning Mr.S. Sivapatham Saturday handed over 39 motorcycles to public health inspectors in the Jaffna district to facilitate community actions that promote a safe and healthy environment for women and children, sources in Jaffna said.T he donation of motorcycles was made possible under the grant of 250 million rupees provided by the Government of Japan.
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TRO, Red Cross care for displaced in East

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 18:00 GMT]
About two hundred families, who fled to Muttur to escape from the fighting between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and cadres loyal to renegade commander Karuna in Verugal and Kathiraveli villages, are given shelter and food in schools in Eachilampathu division in the Muttur south held by the LTTE, sources said.
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Operation to expel Karuna from Tamil homeland begun- LTTE

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 16:46 GMT]
The political section of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in a press release said that the LTTE has started co-ordinated operations to expel renegade LTTE commander ‘Karuna,' Mr. Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan, from the Tamil Homeland, Daya Master, media coordinator for LTTE, said from Vanni.
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LTTE forces move into Vakarai

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 16:22 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers took control of Vakarai, the main village south of the Verugal River, Saturday afternoon. There was no resistance from the Karuna Group when troops of the LTTE’s Jeyanthan Brigade entered the village, 62 kilometres north of Batticaloa, sources in the area said. LTTE infantry units are consolidating positions in Vakarai and its southern environs close to the Panichchankerni Causeway.
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JVP boycotts UPFA cabinet swearing in ceremony

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 13:41 GMT]
The first cabinet of the United Peoples’ Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government was sworn in Saturday evening in the President’s House with no live coverage by the State electronic media. The leaders and ministers designate of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), major constituent of the UPFA, boycotted the event due to differences of opinion over the allocation of subjects to ministries designated for them, informed political sources in Colombo said.
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Jaffna posters urge boycott of SLA sponsored sports programs

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 11:43 GMT]
Posters appeared in public places in the Jaffna district Saturday appealing to members of the public not to participate in any sports festivals and programmes conducted by the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) to mark the Tamil Sinhala new year celebrations. These anonymous posters are seen pasted in public places in important junctions in the peninsula, residents said.
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UNP nominates national list parliamentarians

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 10:24 GMT]
The main opposition in the thirteenth parliament United National Party Saturday submitted its national list of parliamentarians to the Commissioner of Elections. The list included three Tamils and four Muslims. The three former ministers of the then UNF government Mr.Tilak Marapone (Defense), Mr.Tyronne Fernando (Foreign Affairs) and Mr.A.H.M.Azwer (Parliamentary Affairs) have been excluded in the national list though their names were included in it at the time of submitting nominations for the general elections held last week, party sources said.
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Nitharsanam film "Amma Nalama" released in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Saturday, 10 April 2004, 06:34 GMT]
Mr.Ratha, Head of the Thamileelam Film Distribution Unit released the first copy of the "Amma Nalama?" a film produced by the Nitharsanam Television Unit of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam last Thursday evening at the Trincomalee Town Hall. The Chief Priest of the Trincomalee Pathirakali Ambal Temple Bramasiri S.Ravichchandrakurukkal received the first copy. Mr.N.Kesavarajan directed the film, sources said.
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LTTE’s ‘Jeyanthan Brigade’ units lead Vakarai offensive

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 19:46 GMT]
Special units of the Jeyanthan Brigade, the most feared infantry formation of the Liberation Tigers, led the multi pronged offensive towards Vakarai Friday, according to LTTE sources in the east. Two counter attacks on the forward defence localities which the Tigers have consolidated at Kandalady, 64 kilometres north of Batticaloa, led by ‘Jim Kelly Thaaththa’ and ‘Robert’, deputies of renegade LTTE commander ‘Karuna’ (Mr. Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan), were beaten back Friday evening, according to the sources.
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Mystery armed men attack TNA supporters in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 17:56 GMT]
Mystery gangs comprising armed men are allegedly assaulting and intimidating active supporters of the Tamil National Alliance in the Jaffna district, especially in the Vadamarachchi north division, following the victory of the TNA at the last general election, civil sources complained Friday.
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Northern Muslims for Norwegian facilitation

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 17:27 GMT]
The United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA), which was voted to power at the general elections on April 2, should continue the peace process with the facilitation of the Norwegian government, said the Forum for Northern Muslim Rights (FNMR) in a statement released Friday.
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Civilians flee fighting in Vakarai

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 17:05 GMT]
A large number of civilians are fleeing their homes as a result of the fighting between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and the renegade Karuna group in Vakarai, sources said.
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TNA nominates two national list MPs

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 16:38 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance Thursday nominated Mr.Jospeh Pararajasingham of Batticaloa and Mr.M.K.Eelaventhan of Jaffna for the posts of two national list parliamentarians through the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchchi (ITAK), political sources said.
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JHU to support UPFA to form a government

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 16:17 GMT]
The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) said Friday that it would support the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) to form a government without depending on other minority parties who call themselves as "kingmakers" in the country's politics. JHU has nine parliamentarians, all Buddhist monks, including two national list members in the new parliament. The current parliamentary strength of the UPFA is 105. The UPFA needs the support of eight parliamentarians to prove its simple majority in the 225 member-new parliament, political sources said.
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A few families allowed to resettle in Thenmaradchi HSZ

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 14:39 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Army has allowed resettlement of a few internally displaced families in the high security zones in Thenmaradchchi south division in Jaffna district on a staggered basis. The first batch of IDPs would be allowed to resettle in areas close to Thoppu Pillaiyair Kovil in Maravanpulo village on the Tamil-Sinhala New Year Day, civil sources said.
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Key Karuna Group commander wounded

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 13:48 GMT]
A key commander of the Karuna Group was seriously wounded when troops of the Liberation Tigers advanced on Vakarai, 62 kilometres north of Batticaloa, in the early hours of Friday morning. ‘Barathithaasan’, commander of the Karuna Group’s Vinothan Unit, wounded in the abdomen, was admitted to the Batticaloa Teaching Hospital. “We will face problems if casualties rise in the coming days because most of our consultants and many medical officers and interns from the north have left”, said a doctor who works there. The Karuna Group forced Tamils of Jaffna to leave Batticaloa last month.
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Japanese aid to improve Jaffna heath services

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 11:12 GMT]
39 motorcycles will be handed over to the Jaffna provincial health department for the use of public health inspectors in the peninsula under the 250 million rupee-grant of the Japanese government through the UNICEF to support the project for the improvement of Maternal and Child Care in the conflicted affected areas in the northeast and the neighbouring districts, sources said.
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LTTE infantry formations advance on Vakarai

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 April 2004, 04:29 GMT]
Infantry formations of the Liberation Tigers crossed the Verugal River, about 78 kilometres north of Batticaloa, in the early hours of the morning Friday and advanced towards Vakarai, residents from the area who arrived in Valaichenai said. The infantry formations of the LTTE were spearheaded by crack commando units of the LTTE and were backed by heavy artillery fire. Karuna Group commander for the Vakarai region, ‘Jeyam’ was wounded. LTTE infantry and mortar units are consolidating their position in Paalchenai, about 6 kilometres north of Vakarai, according to residents of the area.
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Indian Navy's tall ship to make call in Colombo

[TamilNet, Thursday, 08 April 2004, 18:04 GMT]
The Indian Navy's Sailing Ship, Tarangini, will be visiting Colombo on the last leg of her circumnavigation voyage from 16th April to 20th April 2004. This is the first Port Call in Sri Lanka for an Indian Navy's Ship since 1983, Indian High Commission (IHC) said in a press release.
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32 member UPFA Cabinet to be sworn in on Saturday

[TamilNet, Thursday, 08 April 2004, 17:41 GMT]
A thirty-two member cabinet of the United People's Freedom Alliance is likely to be sworn in Saturday, sources in Colombo said. A conference of leaders of constituent parties of the UPFA was held Thursday with President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge in the chair and the allocation of ministries has been finalized, government sources said Thursday.
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JHU opposes SL President's proposed talks with LTTE

[TamilNet, Thursday, 08 April 2004, 15:58 GMT]
The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), which has emerged as the third force in Sri Lanka's southern politics by winning nine parliamentary seats in the last week's general election, Thursday said it would oppose any move to hold direct talks only with the LTTE to come to an agreement to find a political solution to the ethnic crisis.
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Unidentified youth found shot dead in Valaichenai

[TamilNet, Thursday, 08 April 2004, 13:18 GMT]
An unidentified youth was found dead with gunshot injuries on his head in the Karuvakerny area of Valaichenai in the Batticaloa district, Valaichenai police said Thursday.
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All 20 TNA Parliamentarians issue joint statement

[TamilNet, Thursday, 08 April 2004, 04:42 GMT]
"In view of the speculative reports in the media, all Members of Parliament elected from the North-Eastern region in the name of Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchchi emphatically state that we are unequivocally and irrevocably committed to the political aspirations of the Tamil people for over the past fifty years for self rule in a unified north-eastern region, which has been the acknowledged as the area of historical habitation of the Tamil speaking people," said 20 Tamil National Alliance parliamentarians in a joint statement issued Wednesday night after two days of discussions held in Colombo.
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Sri Lanka’s PM says executive presidency will be abolished

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 07 April 2004, 21:19 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s newly appointed Prime Minister, Mr. Mahinda Rajapakse, said Wednesday that he would work to change the constitution and abolish the executive presidency within four months as promised in his party’s election manifesto, and that he would bring the President under parliament, sources in Colombo said.
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General election in Jaffna was clean and fair - GA

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 07 April 2004, 20:19 GMT]
The general election held on April 2 was conducted in the Jaffna district without any irregularities, said Mr. S. Pathmanathan, the Government Agent for Jaffna and Returning Officer for the elections, according to Wednesday’s edition of the Uthayan, a Tamil newspaper published in Jaffna.
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Sri Lanka's President meets outgoing PM

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 07 April 2004, 16:15 GMT]
Sri Lanka's President, Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunge, and former Prime Minister, Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe, held talks Wednesday that lasted for about two hours at the President's House. The talks centred on various subjects including the resumption of peace talks with the Liberation Tigers (LTTE), informed sources said.
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BASL honours senior human rights lawyers

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 07 April 2004, 14:38 GMT]
The Legal Aid Foundation (LAF) of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has honoured seven senior lawyers, Mr.K.Sivapalan of Trincomalee, Ms. Shantha Abimannasingham of Jaffna, Ms C.M.Balalle of Maho, Mr.M.Sittampalam of Vavuniya, and Mr.A.L.M. Hashim of Kegalle, Mr. Ashoka Mahadiulweve of Anuradhapura and Mr. Marshal Perera of Badulla, with the honorary title " Senior Legal Aid Counsel."
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Sri Lanka's PM delays naming cabinet

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 07 April 2004, 10:17 GMT]
Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse, Sri Lanka's new Prime Minister of the minority government postponed the naming of his new cabinet to either Thursday or Friday, foreign news agencies reported from Colombo. The cabinet was earlier expected to be sworn in on Wednesday.
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TNA MPs from Vanni pay homage to LTTE martyrs

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 21:01 GMT]
The newly elected Tamil National Alliance MPs from the Vanni district Monday visited the martyr’s cemetery of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in Eachankulam in Vavuniya and paid their respects to the LTTE cadres who died fighting for the Tamil people, vowing "to work hard for the ideals for which the martyrs have sacrificed their lives," sources in Vavuniya said.
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‘TNA should speak up for upcountry Tamils’ – UPF

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 19:49 GMT]
The leader of the Upcountry People’s Front (UPF), Mr. Periyannan Chandrasekaran, speaking to the Press after he met with the political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, Mr. S. P. Thamilchelvan, on Tuesday, said that on behalf of the UPF, he would request the 22 Tamil National Alliance MPs to speak up about the problems of the Upcountry Tamil people, and that he would come to an understanding with the TNA in Sri Lanka's parliament without supporting any Southern parties, sources said.
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Western province Tamil leader meets Thamilchelvan

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 19:09 GMT]
The leader of the Western Province People’s Front (WPPF), Mr. Mano Ganesan, who has been elected MP in the general elections held on April 2, met with the political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam at the latter’s secretariat in Kilinochchi at 5:00 pm on Tuesday and held discussions on wide ranging issues, including the Southern political situation in the aftermath of the elections and on taking forward the peace process, sources said.
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All TNA MPs attend parliamentary group meeting

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 15:36 GMT]
Dismissing reports carried by the Sri Lankan State-controlled electronic and print media that they had decided to function as a separate group, the 5 Tamil National Alliance MPs from the Batticaloa and Amparai districts participated at the first TNA parliamentary group meeting held Tuesday evening in Colombo along with the 15 TNA MPs elected from other districts of the Northeast, and Mr.Rajavarothiam Sampanthan, the senior TNA leader, was unanimously elected as the leader of the TNA parliamentary group at this meeting, TNA sources said.
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Four arrested for attacking TNA activist in Thenmaradchchi

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 14:29 GMT]
The Chavakachcheri Magistrate, Mr.B.Balasubramaniam, Tuesday ordered remand for four persons on a report by the Police that they had attacked a Tamil National Alliance (TNA) activist with sword, causing grievous hurt to him, legal sources said.
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JVP to get Land, Fisheries, Culture, Rural Economy Development ministries

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 14:05 GMT]
Thirty-five-member cabinet of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government is to be sworn in on Thursday or Friday. UPFA leaders have decided to limit the number of cabinet ministers to thirty-five, government sources said Tuesday.
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"First priority is to obtain majority in parliament"- PM

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 10:40 GMT]
"My first priority is to secure a majority for my government in the parliament," said Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse soon after he assumed office as Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Tuesday morning. When he met the press after swearing in, he declined to reveal the details of which minority parties he is likely to woo to join the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) to obtain a majority in the parliament.
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Sri Lanka's 14th Prime Minister Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 05:20 GMT]
Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse Tuesday morning was sworn in as the Sri Lanka's fourteenth Prime Minister. President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge administered the oath of secrecy to the new Prime Minister at an event held in the Presidential Secretariat, Presidential secretariat sources said.
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Chariot festival concludes at historic Trinco temple

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 06 April 2004, 00:01 GMT]
The annual festival of the centuries old historic Pathirakali Ambal Temple in Trincomalee concluded Sunday with the water-cutting ceremony held in the Back Bay Sea, which is known locally in Tamil as "Theertha Kadatkarai." The Chariot ("THER") festival was held Saturday. A large number of devotees thronged the temple grounds to witness the festivals on Saturday and Sunday.
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UPFA said divided over selection of new Prime Minister

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 16:08 GMT]
Sri Lanka President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge Monday put off the naming of a new Prime Minister of the thirteenth parliament for Tuesday due to the differences of opinion prevailing among the leaders of constituent parties of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA). The meeting of the UPFA leaders held Monday concluded without coming to a unanimous decision on the Prime Minister nominee, political sources said. Wire reports said later, however, that Mr. Mahinda Rajapakse, the opposition leader in the previous parliament, had been chosen as the new PM.
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SLA agrees to relax restrictions on fishing in northern seas

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 16:03 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Army has allowed fishermen of the Vadamarachchi division in the Jaffna district to use fishing boats with 40 horse power (hp) outboard engines for fishing in the northern seas. A decision to this effect was made at a conference held Saturday at the Point Pedro Sri Lanka army camp attended by officials of the SLA and fisheries societies, fisheries sources said.
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Pongu Thamil calls on UN to recognize Tamil aspirations

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 15:27 GMT]
At the Pongu Thamil event held Monday in front of the United Nations' Offices in Geneva, Switzerland, the participants from the Tamil Diaspora pointed out the Tamil aspirations endorsed by the Tamil people in the General Elections on April 2 by an overwhelming majority, and called on the U.N. and the international community to recognize the aspirations in finding a lastintg solution to the Tamil question in Sri Lanka.
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EPDP cadres threaten LTTE political activists in Naranthanai

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 13:44 GMT]
The Jaffna office of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) Sunday received a complaint that the paramilitary Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) activists at gunpoint had intimidated the political head of the Liberation Tigers in the Islands, Mr.C.Arunthavam, and his associates, sources said.
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EPDP Pungudutivu office burnt down by residents

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 13:37 GMT]
A political office of the para military Eelam Peoples' Democratic Party (EPDP) located in Perunkattu junction in the Pungudutivu village was burnt down on Saturday night allegedly by residents of the area. The office was functioning in the area with the security provided by the Sri Lanka Army and the Police, sources said.
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Massive Pongu Thamil Convergence of European Tamils

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 12:39 GMT]
The Pongu Thamil event started at 14:40 European time on Monday at the Central Railway station in Geneva, Switzerland, with a speech by Mr. V. Rudrakumaran, the legal advisor of the Liberation Tigers, and the number of participants exceeded the organizers' expectations, sources said.
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Geneva Pongu Thamil expects more than 10,000 participants

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 11:08 GMT]
In a press conference held at Hotel Warwich in Geneva at 11.15am today, the organizers of Pongu Thamil (Tamil uprising) said that they expect around 12000 participants in the rally set towards UN Buildings in Geneva from the Railway station of Geneva. Because of the tightened security due to the recent terror-attacks in Europe, the organizers expect delays for participants from various parts of Europe arriving at the venue, sources in Geneva said.
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Wickremesinghe says minority government danger to peace process

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 10:57 GMT]
The outgoing Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday told a news conference in Colombo that the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) appears to be trying to form a minority government and such a minority government will be a danger to the continuity of the peace process with the LTTE.
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Thennamaravadi voters return back to Vanni

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 02:16 GMT]
About five hundred displaced Tamil voters of Thennamaravadi village, seventy-three km off north of Trincomalee town Sunday returned to their temporary residence Ponnagar in the Mullaitivu district in the LTTE held Vanni region, after voting in the Friday poll, sources said. The villagers were denied their right to vote for the last two decades.
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Election results, major political victory for freedom struggle- LTTE

[TamilNet, Monday, 05 April 2004, 00:17 GMT]
The Tamil people have delivered a clear message that the "concept of the Tamil Homeland, Tamil Nationalism and the right for Tamil self rule should be accepted as the basic aspirations of the Tamil people and that the Tamil national problem should be politically resolved on that basis, failing which the Tamil people will fight to establish the Tamil sovereignty in their homeland on the principle of self determination," said the Political division of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in an official communique released in the peace secretariat website.
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Sri Lanka’s new PM, Cabinet to be appointed Monday

[TamilNet, Sunday, 04 April 2004, 17:44 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s new Prime Minister of the thirteenth parliament is to be sworn in on Monday. The new cabinet of ministers is also expected to take oaths on the same day. Sri Lanka's President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge is expected to invite the leader of the political party that has got highest number of seats in the Friday poll, the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA), to form the government, Presidential secretariat sources said.
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TNA becomes third largest party in Sri Lanka’s 13th parliament

[TamilNet, Sunday, 04 April 2004, 15:17 GMT]
The United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) Sunday evening emerged as the single largest party in the Sri Lanka’s thirteenth 225-member parliament with 105 seats and United National Party (UNP) with 82 seats. The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) which won four electoral districts, Jaffna, Vanni, Trincomalee and Batticaloa in the northeast province except Amparai became the third largest party in the new parliament with twenty two seats.
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Commissioner declares no re-vote as candidates claim electoral fraud

[TamilNet, Sunday, 04 April 2004, 13:54 GMT]
While there were voting irregularities observed in two districts in the South and speculation was rife that there will be revoting, the defeated V. Ananthasangaree, the controversial Leader of Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF), whose Independent group in Jaffna district garnered less than 2% of the votes and the Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) which managed to get a single seat, claimed widespread voter fraud by the Liberation Tigers in Jaffna district, media reports said. But the Election Commissioner Sunday decided against a re-vote.
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"TNA solidly stands behind ISGA"-Sampanthan tells UNF

[TamilNet, Sunday, 04 April 2004, 11:19 GMT]
"We have been closely watching the current political situation," Tamil National Alliance leader and the re-elected Trincomalee district parliamentarian Mr.R.Sampanthan told Mr.Bradman Weerakoon, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe in a telephonic conversation initiated by the latter Sunday morning, political sources said.
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Trinco GA, Police commended for violence free elections

[TamilNet, Sunday, 04 April 2004, 02:35 GMT]
The Trincomalee District Returning Officer Mr. Gamini Rodrigo Saturday evening declared at the Trincomalee district secretariat that Messrs R.Sampanthan and K.Thurairetnasingham of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Najeeb Mohamed Abdul Majeed of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and N.W.M.Jayantha Wijesekara of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) have been elected parliamentarians for the Trincomalee Electoral District No: 14.
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Vanni election results released

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 17:56 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance scored 90834 votes in the Vanni electoral district, according to results released by its chief returning officer, Mr. K. Ganesh, Saturday evening. The total number of valid votes polled in the district is 140377. The TNA got five of the six Parliamentary seats of Vanni. The United National Front got the sixth seat by polling 33540 votes.
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Observers criticize State media, commend Commissioner, Police

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 17:41 GMT]
While criticising the State media as biased and its absence of balance "during the campaign cast a long shadow over this election process," Hon Margaret Reid, chair of the Commonwealth Observer Group (COG), Saturday issued an interim statement on Sri Lanka General Election 2004 commended the Election Commissioner, his staff and the Police "for their preparations and their performance on the day."
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TamilNet Batticaloa correspondent elected TNA MP

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 14:21 GMT]
Mr. Senathirajah Jeyanandamoorthy, TamilNet’s correspondent for Batticaloa has been elected as a Tamil National Alliance Member of Parliament for the eastern district, election officials said Saturday. He received 44457 personal preference votes. The Tamil National Alliance won a landslide victory in Batticaloa and got four of the district’s five seats.
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Jaffna student leader gets most preferential votes

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 14:07 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) candidate, Selvarajah Gajendran, who is also the president of International Student Organization, obtained the most preferential votes, 112,077, in Jaffna, according to unofficial counts revealed by the election counting offices in Jaffna.
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TNA to get five seats in Vanni

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 12:52 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance is poised to capture five seats in Vanni electorate obtaining a majority of the 126,000 votes cast, according to unofficial reports reaching from the vote counting offices, TNA sources from Vanni said.
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TNA scores ninety percent of votes polled in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 07:43 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance got ninety percent of the total votes polled in Jaffna and secured eight of the district’s nine seats, election officials said Saturday. The landslide victory is unprecedented. The total votes polled in the district was 303259, of which 21233 (6.96 percent) were rejected as spoilt. The paramilitary group EPDP managed to get a single seat by polling 18612 votes (6.2 percent). Independent Group No. 1, led by Mr. Veerasingham Anandasangaree was wiped out from the count as it got only 1.82 percent (5156) of the total votes polled in Jaffna.
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TNA wins two parliamentary seats in Trincomalee district

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 01:57 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) obtained two seats in Trincomalee obtaining 69,087 votes, nearly 4,000 votes more than its nearest rival Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC). The counting of preferential votes in the Trincomalee electoral district commenced Saturday morning in the counting centres located in the Trincomalee district secretariat.
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TNA scores high in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 00:30 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) is leading by a massive majority in the Batticaloa district, sources at the elections secretariat in the eastern town said. In the 16 counting centres at the secretariat where votes have been sorted, the TNA has polled 121000 votes. Although voter turnout in Tamil areas of Batticaloa was reported low until early afternoon Friday, it surged later in the day to average at 83.58 percent, the highest polling rate in the northeast in this election.
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TNA said leading in Trincomalee electoral district

[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 April 2004, 00:19 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) is reported to be leading by more than two thousand votes in the Trincomalee electoral district in the final count which is in progress Saturday early morning. TNA is now expected to capture two parliamentary seats for the first time under the district proportionate system, Tamil sources said.
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TNA leads by massive majorities in Jaffna electorates

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 23:45 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) is leading all the electorates of the Jaffna District by vast majorities, elections officials in the north said in the early hours of Saturday morning. In the Udupiddy electorate of Jaffna, for which results were made available, the TNA (contesting as Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi) got 24176 votes. The paramilitary group EPDP polled 874 votes and the Independent Group No. 1 led by Mr. V. Anandasangaree got only 362 votes in the Udupiddy electorate in Jaffna.
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TNA gets 80% Jaffna Postal Votes, comes second in Trinco

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 19:20 GMT]
Of the 3985 total postal votes cast in Jaffna, Tamil National Alliance obtained 3175 votes (80.1%). EPDP obtained 420 votes (10.6%) and Independent (Anandasangaree) group got 340 (8.6%). In Trincomalee, TNA (1892) came second behind UPFA (3269) in postal votes cast. UNP (1698) and SLMC (1441) followed the leaders.
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UPFA takes lead in Postal Votes

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 18:10 GMT]
The United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) took the most number of votes in postal voting in three districts in the South, Election Department announced Friday night. The main constituent parties of the UPFA are the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP). United National Party (UNP) came second and the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) third.
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80% vote in Trinco clustered booths

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 18:00 GMT]
About ninety percent voters in the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam controlled areas in the Trincomalee district exercised their votes in the general election that concluded Friday evening 4 p.m. "Across Trincomalee seventy two percent voters exercised their franchise," said the Trincomalee District Returning Officer Mr. Gamini Rodrigo said Friday evening.
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Kilinochchi, Vadamaradchi east voters throng Muhamalai

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 13:56 GMT]
Elections officials in Jaffna said Friday that thousands of voters from Kilinochchi walked a kilometre in scorching sun across the line of control between the areas controlled by the LTTE and the Sri Lanka army in the southern part of peninsula to cast their ballot. Polling was higher than sixty percent in the clustered booths in Sri Lanka army’s clearing zone for commercial vehicles, according to them. People voted with unprecedented enthusiasm in the Sri Lanka military controlled parts of Jaffna.
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Jaffna reports high turnout, Erlalai booths close early

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 11:14 GMT]
Civil society sources in Jaffna said that there was high voter turnout in Chunnakam and Mallakam area. However, reports from Erlalai said that the booths at Erlalai Saiva Shanmarga Vidiyalayam were suddenly closed around 3.55pm and the gates were locked preventing further voting. Further details are not known.
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High polling in clustered booths for Killinochchi voters

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 11:08 GMT]
High polling was recorded in the clustered polling stations located in the Muhamalai area for voters residing in the LTTE controlled Killinochchi district and villages in the Vadamaradchchi east division in the Jaffna district. Around noon, sixty percent of the voters have voted in the sixty two polling stations, 30 for Killinochchi district voters and 32 for Vadamaradchchi east division voters in the LTTE held areas, election department sources said.
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Batticaloa polling, high in Muslim areas, low in Tamil areas

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 08:34 GMT]
Brisk polling is reported in Muslim areas such as Kattankudy, Oddamavadi and Eravur in Batticaloa district and low polling in Tamil areas till one p.m. Friday, Batticaloa District Returning Officer Mr.S.Punnyamoorthy said
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Thousands from Vanni vote in Omanthai, Uyilankulam, Madhu

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 07:50 GMT]
Thousands of enthusiastic voters from the Mullaithivu district and the northern parts of the Vavuniya district which are controlled by the Liberation Tigers swarmed to polling stations in Omanthai Friday morning to cast their ballots. More than thirty percent of the fifty two thousand voters in Mullaithivu had cast their votes by 10 a.m. according to the chief returning officer for the district, Ms. Imelda Sukumar. Omanthai, a dilapidated town surrounded by Sri Lankan military garrisons is eighteen kilometres north of Vavuniya town.
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Brisk polling reported in Trincomalee district

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 07:24 GMT]
Brisk polling is reported from the clustered polling stations, which are located in Kattaiparichchan, and Mahindapura for voters residing the LTTE controlled Muttur east villages and Eachilampathu division in the Trincomalee district. Trincomalee District Returning Officer Mr. Gamini Rodrigo Friday noon said about seventy five percent of the uncleared area voters have exercised their franchise, sources said.
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TRO-assisted disabled students achieve academic success

[TamilNet, Friday, 02 April 2004, 00:01 GMT]
Eyesight-impaired students from Iniya Valvu Illam have shown themselves to be competitive with other students in their schools in the last GCE (OL) exam for which results were released recently. One such student, Mr. Alagu Chandrakumar, received the best results in Vallipunam Junior High School, receiving 3 As, 2 Bs and 4 Cs. Two other students from Iniya Valvu Illam received 1 A, 2 Bs, 5 Cs and 1 S; and 1A, 1 B, 5 Cs and 1 S respectively.
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Pre-school Committees to be elected in the North-East

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 23:15 GMT]
Elections of 13-member executive committees of the Pre-school Education Development Centre (PSEDC) are being held throughout North-East, and Committee members will be elected from General Councils comprising parents, administrators, teachers and government officers from Education and Health Departments, Pradeshiya Sabahs (regional councils) and Non-Governmental Organisations, the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) said in a statement Thursday.
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Voters in LTTE-held Vanni arrive in Puliyankulam

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 17:33 GMT]
Twenty thousand voters in remote areas in the Mullaithivu district have been brought to the Liberation Tigers’ checkpoint in Puliyankulam until Thursday evening for voting in the general elections on Friday at the clustered polling stations in Omanthai, about 10 k.m. south of Puliyankulam, said Mr. S. Elilan, the political head of the LTTE in Vavuniya.
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Elections Commissioner says ready for polls on Friday

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 16:56 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s Elections Commissioner, Mr.Dayananda Dissanayake, said Thursday that all arrangements have been made to hold the country’s thirteenth parliamentary election since it gained independence on Friday. Mr. Dissanayake will use the powers vested in him as Commissioner through the 17th Amendment to the constitution to ensure a free and fair general election, election department sources said.
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NPC condemns election violence and expulsion of people in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 15:03 GMT]
In a press release Thursday, the National Peace Council has condemned the election-related violence, intimidations and assassinations in the North-East, and the “effort to expel people of Jaffna-origin living in Batticaloa,” saying that “factional rivalries should not be solved at the expense of the people.”
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UN agencies condemn forced displacement of Jaffna Tamils

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 12:55 GMT]
The Resident Representatives of UNDP, UNHCR, UNICEF and WFP in Sri Lanka Thursday “expressed their joint concern over recent reports of the displacement of northern Tamils from Batticaloa District, either as a result of fear of persecution, or as a result of threats”. In a statement issued Thursday they strongly condemned the forced displacement and the violation of the basic rights of northern Tamils in Batticaloa. The UN agencies urged the authorities to ensure protection and to maintain law and order.
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Batticaloa doctors protest against Karuna Group

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 12:21 GMT]
Doctors at the Batticaloa teaching hospital protested Thursday against the Karuna Group for forcing Jaffna Tamils to leave the troubled eastern district. Eleven doctors from Jaffna, including six consultants who were working in the Batticaloa teaching hospital, left the district in the early hours of Thursday with Police escort. Hundreds of Jaffna Tamils fled the eastern town after armed cadres of the Karuna Group threatened and ordered them to leave Batticaloa on Tuesday night.
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Omanthai SLA checkpoint gets electricity

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 06:02 GMT]
Transport arrangements for the more than 100,000 voters in the Liberation Tigers controlled areas in the Vanni and Jaffna districts for the elections to be held on Friday are being completed, with a resting place in Puliyankualm and voting booths close to Omanthai and Muhamalai check points of the Sri Lanka Army, officials from the Elections Department said. As part of these arrangements, electricity supply was ceremonially inaugurated to the Omanthai checkpoint complex of the SLA on Wednesday.
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CMEV sends all Sinhala monitors to Jaffna district

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 00:35 GMT]
A thirteen member-team of the Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) arrived in Jaffna Wednesday to monitor the April 2nd general election in the Jaffna electoral district. All monitors are from the major community and would be staying in Jaffna until the election is concluded, civil society sources said.
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