231 Reports

NPC welcomes Geneva agreement, requests space for civil society during talks

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 February 2006, 12:53 GMT]
The National Peace Council (NPC) congratulates the Sri Lanka government and LTTE delegations for reaching agreement to "uphold the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA), and thereby to ensure an end to all violence, and to meet again to take the peace process forward," and requests the parties "to provide space at future peace talks for civic groups to be observers of the formal peace talks."
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Donor Co-chairs welcome Geneva outcome

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 February 2006, 12:00 GMT]
Japan, Norway, the United States and the European Union welcomed the outcome of the meeting on the "implementation of the Ceasefire Agreement" and the "renewed commitment from the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE to respect and uphold the Ceasefire Agreement, as well as the reconfirmation of their commitment to cooperate fully with and respect the rulings of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM)," in a press release issued Tuesday.
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Paramilitary cadre reveals planned claymore attack prior to Geneva Talks

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 February 2006, 11:41 GMT]
A paramilitary cadre with instructions to eliminate a Brigade Commander of the Liberation Tigers and an Intelligence Wing official in Batticaloa before talks in Geneva, met the press Tuesday morning in LTTE controlled Kokkaddicholai. The 32-year-old paramilitary cadre, Vigneswaran, told media at Solayaham Conference Centre that he turned himself to the Tigers as he was unhappy to obey instructions issued by the Sri Lankan military.
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Ex-garrison town gets new school buildings

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 February 2006, 11:29 GMT]
German Technical Co-operation (GTZ) of the German Federal Government and the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) announced that new buildings to house a school and a pre-school in Thattuvankotti, a village in close proximity to Elephant Pass are to be opened Wednesday at 10 a.m., marking an important milestone in the development of the village after the residents were displaced 1996.
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JVP wants to win local councils before national elections

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 February 2006, 10:53 GMT]
"Mahinda Rajapakse Government has deviated from finding a solution to the conflict within the unitary constitution of Sri Lanka and our reasons for defeating the Ranil Wickremesinghe Government are not bearing any results. Mr Rajapakse has failed to fulfil the promises given to us before the Presidential elections," said Propaganda Secretary of Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP and parliamentarian Mr Wimal Weerawanse addressing a rally in Kataragama, southern area in Sri Lanka in support of local council candidates of JVP Monday, political sources in Colombo said.
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Lord Konesar procession begins in Trincomalee town

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 February 2006, 22:04 GMT]
Three-day procession of Lord Konesar with his consort Mathumai Ambal began Monday evening around 5 p.m. after the annual observance of Maha Sivarathiri day Sunday night in the historic Trincomalee Koneswaram Temple with heavy police security. The town was calm in contrast to the violence that plagued the town since the erection of Lord Buddha statue in the vicinity of the central bus stand, including the execution type killing of Tamil students on the second day of the New Year 2006.
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Diaspora Tamil Organizations welcome Geneva Joint Statement

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 February 2006, 12:21 GMT]
The International Federation of Tamils (IFT), a Geneva based consortium of Tamil diaspora organisations, in a press release issued Monday commended the facilitators Norway, Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse and the Liberation Tigers for bringing "relief to all peace loving people in the island." The press release also urged Mr Rajapakse to "use his power, influence and goodwill to prevail on those paramilitary cadres and get the seven TRO volunteers released immediately."
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Hartal in Kalmunai supports sixth day of protest

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 February 2006, 12:10 GMT]
Businesses, banks, Government establishments and common markets in Kalmunai, Santamarutu and Kalmunaikudi were closed Monday in support of the tsunami families protesting for the sixth day in front of Kalmunai District Secretariat (Muslim Division). The protesters began their campaign Wednesday morning demanding that they should be provided with permanent houses and other related relief and assistance. The families demand the Amparai Government Agent meet with them and provide assurances to attend to their difficulties, sources in Kalmunai said.
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Defence claims Tharsini case Cap belongs to Batticaloa SLA trooper

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 February 2006, 11:48 GMT]
When the murder case of Ilayathamby Tharsini, 20, who was raped and murdered on 18 December in Punguduthivu near Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) camp was taken up for hearing Monday, the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) claimed that the Military Cap which was found near the site of the well where Tharsini's body was found belonged to a Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldier currently assigned for duty at a SLA camp in Batticaloa, legal sources said.
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Balasingham rejects Sri Lanka’s "amendment" concept as absurd

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 February 2006, 10:42 GMT]
Anton Balasingham, the chief negotiator and political strategist of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), rejected outright the Sri Lanka government’s claim that the joint communiqué, issued after the Geneva talks, amounted to an amendment to the original Ceasefire Agreement. "This bizarre interpretation given by the President’s counsel, Mr H.L. De Silva is ridiculous and preposterous and totally unacceptable to the LTTE", Mr Balasingham told TamilNet when queried about the issue.
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Tamil man found dead with cut injuries in Kalmunai

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 February 2006, 09:24 GMT]
The body of a young Tamil man was found with cut injuries at Periyakulakkaddu, Paandiruppu in Kalmunai, 40 km. south of Batticoloa, around 8 a.m., Monday, police in the south eastern town said.
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ITAK appoints Chairman, deputy for Verugal PS

[TamilNet, Monday, 27 February 2006, 08:59 GMT]
The Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchchi (ITAK) has appointed Mr.Sabapathipillai Soundararajah as Chairman, and Mr.Vairan Nagendran as Vice Chairman of the Verugal Pradesiya Sabah in the Trincomalee district. ITAK was returned uncontested in the Verugal PS when the nomination closed on 16th February for the thirteen local authorities in the district. The ITAK is now contesting ten local councils excluding Padavi Siripura PS and Gomarankadawela PS, sources said.
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SLN seizes passes from Point Pedro fishermen

[TamilNet, Sunday, 26 February 2006, 20:05 GMT]
Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) soldiers from a patrol craft in the Northern seas seized fishing passes from eleven Point Pedro fishermen, destroyed their nets and fishing accessories and chased them back to the shores Saturday, the fishermen said in a complaint to the Vadamaradchy North Fisheries Consortium.
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ZOA funded computer centre opens in Muttur east

[TamilNet, Sunday, 26 February 2006, 18:14 GMT]
A Computer Training Centre built by the Thamileelam Students Organization with the funding of ZOA, an international non-governmental organization, was opened during the weekend in Sampoor, a village in the LTTE held Muttur east territory, sources said.
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EPDP cadres roam Jaffna islet armed

[TamilNet, Sunday, 26 February 2006, 14:40 GMT]
Alalasundaram Satheesh, a cadre of Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP), a paramilitary group working with Sri Lanka Government, armed with a hand gun and communications equipment belonging to the Sri Lanka Army (SLA), was patrolling residential areas of Jaffna islet of Delft Friday night around 8 p.m., sources in Delft said. Residents remained indoors without venturing out to get provisions in local shops, local residents said.
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Local elections in LTTE areas likely to be postponed

[TamilNet, Sunday, 26 February 2006, 14:28 GMT]
Commissioner of Elections is to decide on whether to hold local council elections in areas controlled by the Liberation Tigers in the NorthEast on March 30th only after holding two conferences, one with all the District Returning Officers who are the Government Agents of the province, and the other with the general secretaries of the registered political parties contesting the poll, sources said.
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Bus shortage plagues northern region transport system

[TamilNet, Sunday, 26 February 2006, 13:54 GMT]
Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) has sent only five buses to Northern Region Transport Board (NRTB) instead of fifty as promised. The SLTB made an order with a foreign firm to import two thousand buses to be distributed among various depots in the island. Only three hundred out of 2000 buses have arrived in Colombo, sources said..
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SL President expresses satisfaction over Geneva peace talks

[TamilNet, Sunday, 26 February 2006, 12:38 GMT]
Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse Sunday met with the government delegation, which attended the Geneva peace talks with Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) at Temple Trees in Colombo and discussed the outcome of talks in Geneva. Mr Rajapakse was satisfied with the decisions reached at the talks, Presidential Secretariat sources said, according government controlled Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) in its Sunday evening news bulletin.
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Regional Citizens Peace Committees to be established in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Sunday, 26 February 2006, 03:38 GMT]
Decision to form Citizen Peace Committees to monitor and report on human rights violations across Jaffna district was taken in a meeting among Secretaries of Jaffna district local councils, presided by Additional Government Agent (AGA), A. Sivasamy, held at the Jaffna district Secretariat Friday, civil society sources in Jaffna said. Head of the Sri Lanka Human Rights Commission, Rohitha Priyatharsana also participated in the meeting.
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Colombo accepts CFA in toto, Balasingham tells Sunday Leader

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 21:39 GMT]
LTTE's Chief Negotiator and Political Strategist, Anton Balasingham, in an exclusive interview with Sunday Leader, said that although the talks were difficult and tough, the Sri Lanka Government has "accepted the meaning and content of this document [Cease Fire Agreement]," and on the issue of paramilitaries he said: "we have told the government, you better start disarming these groups and put an end to their armed military operations so that we could send our cadres to the north and east.We are ready to do that.And if anything happens to them, it will constitue a very very serious violation of the joint statement issued by both the parties."
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LTTE leaders meet Swiss officials, attend expat event

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 20:02 GMT]
Swiss foreign ministry officials met with the Liberation Tigers delegation led by Chief Negotiator and Political Strategist, Anton Balasingham on Friday at Chataeu De Bossey, Geneva where talks between the LTTE and the Government of Sri Lanka was held. On Saturday the delegation attended a large gathering of Tamil-Swiss expatriates in the Convention Hall in Frieberg, Switzerland, sources in Geneva said.
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Mercy Corps Fair to boost Akkaraipattu food industry

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 17:37 GMT]
Two-day Food Processing Fair organized Mercy Corps, an international humanitarian organization which has its headquarters in the USA, UK and Hong Kong, began in Athaullah Auditorium at Akkaraipattu in Amparai district in the eastern province Saturday morning. Ms Jancie Yaden, Mercy Corps' Regional Programme Manager gave the inaugural address, sources said.
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SLA permits Sivarathri celebrations in Naguleswaram temple

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 17:36 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has given permission for devotees to spend day and night at historic Keerimalai Naguleswaram Temple to participate in religious observances on Maha Sivarathiri day, which falls on Sunday, according to Chief Priest and Trustee of the temple Sri K.Naguleswarakurukkal. The annual THER (Chariot) festival of the temple is also to be held Sunday coinciding with Maha Sivarathiri. The temple is located in the high security zone, sources said.
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Trincomalee Lord Konesar procession to be held Monday

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 17:34 GMT]
Three-day procession of Lord Konesar with his consort Mathumai Ambal annually held after Maha Sivarathiri Day is scheduled to begin on Monday afternoon city of Trincomalee. Devotees carry the chief deity from Koneswaram Temple from the Swami Rock inside the Fort Frederick to the entrance of the Fort. From there deities will be kept on a decorated chariot and will be taken in a procession.
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Kalmunai protest stretches to fourth day

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 17:33 GMT]
The sit-in-protest by several hundred tsunami- hit families in Kalmunai area entered fourth day Saturday in front of the office of the Kalmunai divisional secretariat (Muslim division). The protesters began their campaign Wednesday morning demanding that they should be provided with permanent houses and other related relief and assistance. However the affected families demand the Amparai Government Agent to meet with them and provide assurances to attend to their difficulties, sources in Kalmunai said.
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SLN attacks fishermen in Vadamaradchy seas

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 13:18 GMT]
Three fishermen from Sakkottai, Vadamaradchy were attacked and their fishing accessories including nets were damaged by Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) soldiers from a patrolling Dvora speed boat Point Pedro seas Friday 9.30 a.m., Sooriyakumaran, president of Vadamaradchy North fisheries consortium, told TamilNet. He added that even while the talks between Libertion Tigers and the Government of Sri Lanka are in progress, there are no indications that harassment of fishemen by SLN in the northern seas will decrease.
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Maha Sivarathiri to be observed in historic Sivan Temples

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 02:43 GMT]
Maha Sivarathiri Day religious observance is to be held in the historic Trincomalee Koneswaram Temple, Thiruketheeswaram Temple in Mannar and Kantalai Choleeswaram (Siva) Temple, about 20 km southwest off Trincomalee town on February 26th Sunday night . Arrangements are being made by the temple societies and Hindu Affairs Department , sources said.
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NEHRP provides carpentry, masonry training for NorthEast youths

[TamilNet, Saturday, 25 February 2006, 02:03 GMT]
The World Bank (WB) funded North East Housing Reconstruction Programme (NEHRP) has started a masonry and carpentry training project in the NorthEast to meet the acute shortage of masons and carpenters in the eight districts of the province. The project now being implemented in the districts of Jaffna, Mannar and Vavuniya are to be extended to other districts in the province from March, NEHRP sources said.
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Court grants interim relief on UNP CMC list case

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 February 2006, 18:55 GMT]
The Court of appeal Friday issued an interim order staying the operation of the order of the Returnting Officer rejecting the nomination list of the UNP for the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC), legal sources in Colombo said. The two member bench also issued another interim order restraining the Commisssioner of Elections and the Returning Officrs and other officials from conducting the election to Colombo Municipal Council.
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Muslims hold protest in Mannar, Akkaraipattu

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 February 2006, 18:52 GMT]
Several hundreds Muslims held demonstrations in Mannar town in the north and Akkaraipattu in the east Friday afternoon after Jumma prayers against the publication of a caricature by the newspaper in Denmark defaming Prophet Mohamed.
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Mysterious flu alarms Manipay school

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 February 2006, 12:15 GMT]
Seventy three girl students at Manipay Hindu College, Jaffna were taken to Jaffna Teaching Hospital Thursday after falling ill with fever and headache, education officials in Jaffna said. Although initially food poistioning was suspected as the cause of the illness, Regional Directional Health Service, Dr A Ketheeswaran, said it was likely to be a viral infection, health officials said.
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Swiss Government welcomes positive outcome of Geneva talks

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 February 2006, 11:33 GMT]
Welcoming the positive outcome of the talks in Geneva between the Liberation Tigers and the Government of Sri Lanka, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Government of Switzerland in a press release issued from Berne Thursday said, that it "voices the expectation that the parties to the conflict will respect the agreement they have concluded."
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Kalmunai protest enters third day

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 February 2006, 11:24 GMT]
The sit-in-protest campaign by several hundred tsunami affected families in front of the Kalmunai Divisional Secretariat (Muslim division) entered third day Friday and the DS office did not function as the Divisional Secretary and employees were prevented by protestors from entering the office, sources said.
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Tamil women given self-defense training

[TamilNet, Friday, 24 February 2006, 00:05 GMT]
Liberation Tigers have organized a self-defence training program for rural Tamil women in selected areas under their control in the east. Such training facility was recently inaugurated in Vakarai division in the Batticaloa district, sources said.
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GoSL to disarm armed groups

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 18:09 GMT]
Norwegian Minister of International Development released a statement on behalf of the parties to the Sri Lanka conflict, the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) Thursday evening in Geneva. The GOSL is committed to taking all necessary measures in accordance with the Ceasefire Agreement to ensure that no armed group or person other than Government security forces will carry arms or conduct armed operations. The LTTE is committed to taking all necessary measures to ensure that there will be no acts of violence against the Sri Lankan forces and the police. The parties are to meet again in Geneva on April 19th for a second round of talks.
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2000 war destroyed houses in Batticaloa to be reconstructed in 2006

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 16:35 GMT]


The World Bank (WB) funded North East Housing Reconstruction Project (NEHRP) has planned to reconstruct two thousand houses destroyed by war in the Batticaloa district during the year 2006. The beneficiaries will be selected from among the war affected families residing in eighty three villages in eleven divisional secretariat divisions in the Batticaloa district, NEHRP sources said.
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Kinniya division villages to be developed

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 16:34 GMT]
The North East Coastal Community Development Project (NECCDEP) funded by the World Bank (WB) has selected eleven Grama Niladhari units in the Kinniya divisional secretariat division in the Trincomalee district for development. As a first phase reconstruction of destroyed infrastructure facilities is to take place with the participation of the people, NECCDEP sources said.
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Avoid politicizing child rights issues - Thamilchelvan

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 12:38 GMT]
Speaking in the second session of the first day of the talks in Geneva between the Liberation Tigers and the Government of Sri Lanka on 22 February 2006, S P Thamilchelvan, the political head of the LTTE, said that the accusations directed at the Liberation Tigers on Under-age recruitment, although directly irrelevant to the Cease Fire Agreement, needs to be viewed in the context of two decades of war and the continued violation of the rights of children during this period.
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Tsunami affected families demand relief, protest continues

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 11:01 GMT]
The office of the Kalmunai Divisional Secretariat (Muslim division) is under siege for the second day, Thursday as several hundred tsunami affected families continued their sit-in-protest demanding that they should be provided with permanent houses and compensation, sources in Kalmunai said.
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Pirapaharan felicitates Charles Anthony Brigade fighters

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 06:40 GMT]
Leader of Liberation Tigers, V Pirapaharan Wednesday participated in a ceremony at the Roy Training Camp of the Charles Anthony special brigade and presented awards to cadres completing Mortar, Artillery training, LTTE media sources from Kilinochchi said.
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SLA fires artillery shell into LTTE territory

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 05:51 GMT]
An artillery shell fired from a Sri Lanka Army camp in Vadamaradchi fell inside the Liberation Tigers controlled area 1.5 km beyond the no-man zone border in Muhamalai Thursday morning around 4:50 a.m., officials at the LTTE Peace Secretariat in Kilinochchi said. The artillery, launched from Nagarkovil SLA camp, landed between Satha Nagar settlement, a displaced people's settlement and an LTTE camp in the area, peace secretariat officials said.
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Ex-LTTE cadre shot dead in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Thursday, 23 February 2006, 04:04 GMT]
Mr Navarasan, a former member of the Liberation Tigers, was shot dead in Valaichenai by gunmen suspected to be members of a paramilitary group at 9.45 p.m. Wednesday, sources in Batticaloa said. The incident took place along Vishnu Kovil Road in Kiran.
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JVP wants Norway out of peace facilitator role

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 21:37 GMT]
"Norway is an accomplice to the Liberation Tigers in the LTTE's Nationalist struggle and fight for secession. We demand the Sri Lanka Government to relieve Norway from facilitator role," said Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) the Sinhala nationalist ally of the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) of Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse, in a memorandum sent to Colombo press Wednesday, sources in Colombo said. The memorandum was written in Sinhala.
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Muslim UNP supporter shot dead in Eravur

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 15:17 GMT]
A Muslim supporter of the Sri Lanka’s main opposition United National Party (UNP) was shot dead around 8 p.m., Wednesday, allegedly by a Muslim armed group at Meerakerny in Eravur, about 14 km. north of Batticaloa, sources in Batticaloa said.
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Auxilliary force training camp opening ceremony held in Thalaiyadi

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 12:52 GMT]
Opening event of training camp for Sea Tigers' auxilliary force at the Lt.Col.Maravan camp in Thalaiyady, Vadamaradchy east was held at 8 a.m. Wednesday morning, sources from Vadamaradchy said. More than one hundred auxilliary forces cadres from Thalaiyadi area are enrolled in this phase of training, according to officials of the Sea Tigers.
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Sri Lanka Government's opening statement at Geneva

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 12:21 GMT]
"Ceasefire Agreement entered into between the then Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Mr. V. Prabhakaran, the leader of the LTTE on the 22nd February 2002 is contrary to our Constitution and law," declared Nimal Sripala De Silva, Head of the Sri Lankan delegation at the opening session of the talks between the Liberation Tigers and the Government of Sri Lanka.
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Armed men beat MAG staffers in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 11:49 GMT]
Armed men in civilian clothes claiming to be belonging to paramilitary Karuna Group entered the offices of MAG (Mines Advisory Group) in Batticaloa at 2.55 p.m. Wednesday and beat a local staffer working at the office, and threatened the British national heading the Batticaloa office of MAG, sources in Batticaloa said.
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Mannar fishermen woes spotlighted

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 11:15 GMT]
In a memorandum issued to the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), Wednesday, the Mannar District Fisheries Community highlighted the deprivation of their livelihood due to the ban and restriction imposed by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) on fishing, and urged human rights organizations to take efforts to improve the livelihood of fisher families, sources from Mannar said.
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Tsunami affected families protest in Kalmunai

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 10:46 GMT]
Hundreds of tsunami affected families in Kalmunai held a demonstration in front of the Kalmunai Muslim Divisional Secretariat (DS) Wednesday from morning demanding that they should be provided with permanent houses, compensation and other relief measures. Protestors cooked their food in front of the DS office while continuing the protest, sources said.
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Switzerland assures impartial support to resolve SL conflict

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 10:41 GMT]
Pointing out that the decision to hold talks itself has "substantially decreased" violence in Sri Lanka, Urs Ziswiler, Political Affairs Director, Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, said in his opening remarks that "Switzerland aims at providing impartial support for conflict transformation in Sri Lanka," and the crucial goal of the teams is to "jointly ensure the human security of ordinary Sinhalese, Tamil and Muslim people in Sri Lanka."
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Muted response to Amparai hartal call

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 10:38 GMT]
The general shut down call issued by an organization named as the Consortium of Southeast Muslims' Association on Wednesday in the Muslim areas in the Amparai district failed to receive enough response from the Muslim people, Muslim sources in Amparai district said.
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Grenade attack damages house in Pesalai

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 10:36 GMT]
Unidentified persons hurled a grenade at a house belonging to a Tamil civilian along Jude's Road in Ward No:01 of Pesalai town in Mannar district Wednesday afternoon 12.45 p.m. The front portion of the house was badly damaged due to explosion. No one was hurt in the incident, Talaimannar Police said.
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Ceasefire Agreement is foundation of peace and must be implemented - Balasingham

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 10:19 GMT]
Describing the February 2002 ceasefire agreement (CFA) as the “most constructive achievement” of the Norwegian peace process and “the foundation upon which the process has to be built,” the Liberation Tigers’ Chief Negotiator and Political Strategist, Anton Balasingham said Wednesday the CFA had been agreed upon by both the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE after “careful and meticulous scrutiny” and crafted with the skilled assistance of the Norwegian facilitators.
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LTTE Auxiliary Force cadre killed in East

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 05:44 GMT]
Six gunmen who entered the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) controlled area in Pulipaynthakal, 500 meters beyond the no-go zone from Kiran, 25 km north of Batticaloa, shot and killed an LTTE National Auxiliary Force cadre around 10:15 a.m. Wednesday, LTTE's Batticaloa Political Head Daya Mohan told media. The attackers, wearing military fatigues, had come from the Kiran SLA base, he added. The attack was reported three hours before the commencement of talks in Geneva aimed at implmenting the Cease Fire Agreement between the parties to the conflict, the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) and the LTTE.
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Judges' resignation demand response from SL President

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 01:10 GMT]
Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) said in a media release issued Tuesday that the resignation of two senior judges from the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) citing "matters of conscience" indicate that issues involved are serious, and that the most appropriate response is for the head of State is to request details from the judges and to take "corrective measures." AHRC points to the history and warns that societies that have the capacity to listen to such views and take action have benefitted in the long term, and those which do not, have brought further ruin upon themselves.
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Mercy Corps organizes Food Processing Fair in Akkaraipattu

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 16:45 GMT]
Two day Food Processing Fair is to be held in Akkaraipattu in Amparai district on 25th and 26th of February, with the aim of forging market linkages between national-level service and equipment providers and small scale food processors involved in curd production, milling, spice production, baking, fish drying, and cashew roasting, sources said. Mercy Corps, an international humanitarian organization with main offices in US, UK and Hong Kong is organizing the fair.
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Ashraff inclusion in Sri Lanka talks irks Southeastern Muslims

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 16:43 GMT]
The Consortium of South East Muslim Associations has called for a peaceful general shut down Wednesday condemning the Government of Sri Lanka for not allowing a separate Muslim delegation to participate in the two-day peace talk, which is to begin February 22nd in Geneva, Switzerland and for allowing Ms Ferial Ashraff as the sole spokesperson in the talks on behalf of NorthEast Muslims.
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Sri Lanka poultry farmers alerted on bird flu

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 16:41 GMT]
Animal Production and Health Department has issued instructions to poultry farmers not to allow any visitors to enter their farms. Meanwhile the Government of Sri Lanka has banned the importation of all poultry products from India. Banned products include feathers and skins which are used for sofas, jackets, and belts veterinary department sources said.
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Norway appoints Swedish Brigadier as Head of SLMM

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 13:54 GMT]
Norwegian Government Tuesday announced the appointment of Brigadier Ulf Henricsson, a Swede, as the Head of Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM). "It is very positive that another country in the SLMM has produced such an excellent candidate for this important post," said Mr. Erik Solheim, the Norwegian Minister for International Development, in a press release issued by Norway.
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Prayers for peace held in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 12:10 GMT]
"In the forthcoming Geneva talks the Sri Lanka Government should participate with a genuine desire to make compromises opening opportunities to arrive at a just and fair solution to the existential problems faced by the Tamil people," said Bishop of Jaffna Rev Fr Thomas Saundaranayagam speaking at one of the several events held in Jaffna today praying for peace, sources in Jaffna said.
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European Union welcomes Geneva talks

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 11:51 GMT]
European Commission Delegation in Sri Lanka in a press release issued Tuesday, welcomed the February 22- 23 discussions between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and described the talks as "an opportunity to restore confidence in the Ceasefire Agreement and move forward towards a peaceful future."
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Risk awareness training for NorthEast journalists held

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 11:31 GMT]
Two sessions of two-day risk awareness training for journalists, the first session for 25 Jaffna journalists in Colombo, and the second for journalists from the Batticaloa, Amparai and Vavuniya, at Sigiriya village in the North Central Province, organized by the International News Safety Institute (INSI), concluded Sunday, sources said.
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Revised A/L results discriminate Tamil students- CTTU

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 11:09 GMT]
Changes in the Advanced Level examination results announced by Sri Lanka's Department of Examinations have decreased the ranks obtained by Tamil medium candidates from the previously announced computerized results at national and district level thus depriving their chances of Tamil students to enter Medicine and Engineering, Mr.T.Mahasivam, president of the Ceylon Tamil Teachers Union (CTTU) said in a press release Tuesday. "Tamil medium students who have applied for university admission based on previous computerized results are now unable to apply under the revised results," the release said.
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Editor of Sunday Leader detained at Katunayake

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 10:40 GMT]
The Editor of The Sunday Leader Lasantha Wickrematunga was detained and harassed at the Katunayake International Airport for more than half an hour on Monday morning when he an arrived there to board a flight to Geneva, Switzerland to cover the peace talks, airport sources said.
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Save the Children assists NorthEast early childhood development

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 02:10 GMT]
Save the Children in Sri Lanka (SCI-SL) Monday handed over a consignment of materials which included a vehicle, motor bikes, computers, scanners, generators, digital cameras and video equipments and computer chairs and related items worth four million rupees to the North East Provincial Education Ministry to develop its Early Childhood Development (ECD) Unit, civil society sources said.
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Balasingham arrives in Geneva

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 21:27 GMT]
Chief Negotiator and Political Strategist of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) Mr. Anton Balasingham arrived in Geneva at 7:50 p.m. Monday from London. Mr. Balasingham who was accompanied by his wife Ms. Adele Balasingham, was received by Swiss officials at the airport. The LTTE delegation departed to talks venue in Bossey, 22 km northwest of Geneva from the Airport, sources in Geneva said.
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Mannar fisherman found dead

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 17:03 GMT]
The body Mr. James Julie Peiris, 34, a Tamil fisherman and a father of a child who failed to return from the sea on February 18th evening was found washed ashore in the Talaimannar Pier Monday morning. Fellow fishermen identified the body as of missing Mr. Peiris. His fiberglass boat was found anchored in the Pesalai Sea area, fisheries sources said.
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Lankan Deep Penetration Unit retreats leaving behind Claymore mine - LTTE

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 14:31 GMT]
A team of Sri Lanka Army soldiers who entered LTTE controlled Mahilankulam 25 km southeast of Mannar near Iluppaikulam withdrew from the site when intercepted by an LTTE patrol, Media Coordinator of the Liberation Tigers, Daya Master told media Monday evening. The Sri Lankan soldiers had left behind a claymore mine when they withdrew from the site, he added.
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SLN harassment on the rise, say Jaffna Fisheries Officials

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 12:48 GMT]
Fishing boats, nets and other accessories belonging to more than hundred fishermen from Vadamaradchy North coastal villages were damaged by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) soldiers Sunday, Fisheries Union officials in Jaffna said. Fisheries union officials Monday morning handed over memoranda to several organizations in Jaffna urging them to take action to stop SLN from harassing the fishermen.
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Minister to facilitate reopening of Jaffna campus

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 12:16 GMT]
Sri Lanka's Minister of Education, Mr.Susil Premajayanth, who met with a delegation of Deans of the Jaffna University led by its Vice Chancellor Professor Mr. C.Mohanathas during the weekend has assured the delegation that he will make every effort to bring normalcy to the areas surrounding the Jaffna Campus enabling the Jaffna Campus to reopen within two weeks, University sources said. The delegation also handed over a memorandum from the Jaffna University Students which outlined the problems faced by the students to the Minister.
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Local councils to be dissolved before polls

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 11:15 GMT]
Sri Lanka President Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse is expected to issue a gazette notification Monday midnight to dissolve all elected local authorities currently in power, political sources in Colombo said. This move will promote a fair and free election on March 30 when 329 local authorities including municipal councils and urban councils and pradesiya sabahs are scheduled to go to poll, election department sources said.
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Fatal bus accident triggers unrest in Vavuniya

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 09:36 GMT]
Ms Vjayaraj Patmalogini, 26, was killed on the spot and her daughter severely injured when a public bus heading to Okulankulam from Vavuniya town hit them at Vavuniya Good Shed road Monday 20th Feb. at 8.15 am, sources in Vavuniya said. Vavuniya police had to fire teargas and rubber bullets to disperse the angry youths who started attacking the conductor and confronted the Police who arrived at the scene of the accident.
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Rice mill worker shot in Vantharumoolai, seriously wounded

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 08:34 GMT]
A Tamil youth, Kailasapillai Raveendran, 21, was shot and seriously wounded by unidentified gunmen Monday around 6:30 a.m. at Vantharomoolai, 18 km north of Batticaloa town, Police said. Raveendran who is a rice mill worker, was rushed to Batticaloa hospital and later transferred to Colombo hospital, medical sources said. Meanwhile, colleagues of Raveendran alleged that the gunmen were associates of paramilitary operative Pillayan who operates a hunt-and-kill squad for the Sri Lankan Military intelligence from Batticaloa town. However, the reason behind the incident is yet to be established, the Police said.
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TRO staffers in third week of captivity

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 04:49 GMT]
Tamil Rehabilitation Organization, to mark the 20th day after the abduction of ten of TRO staffers, released documents detailing the activities of the TRO workers in the areas of Pre School development and Children Homes. Three of the staffers have been released while the seven still remain in captivity with no communication from the captors widely believed to be paramilitary cadres. TRO abduction matter is likely to figure prominantly at the 22-23rd talks between Liberation Tigers and the Government of Sri Lanka in Geneva, political sources from Colombo said.
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SLA strengthening security around key Jaffna bridges

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 03:33 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has increased its efforts in strengthening defences in several key positions around the main bridges connecting different regions, Vadamaradchy, Thenmaradchy, Valigamam and Jaffna Islets, with new bunkers, new sentry points and additional concertina wire fences, sources in Jaffna said. Security sources speculated that SLA is planning to declare many of the newly strengthened areas as small High Security Zones (HSZs).
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Kinniya Muslim, Tamil leaders meet Elilan

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 00:05 GMT]
Mr.Elilan, Trincomalee district political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) Saturday held a discussion with representatives of Muslim and Tamil communities in the Kinniya secretariat division in the Trincomalee district. The discussion was aimed at promoting better understanding between the two communities and to resolve problems they are currently facing in the division, sources said.
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Book traces Tamil history of Trinco village

[TamilNet, Monday, 20 February 2006, 00:01 GMT]
A compilation of thirty research articles on the history of centuries old Tamil village Thambalagamam in Trincomalee district written by Mr.K.Velautham, a nonagenarian journalist was released Sunday morning at Kulakottan Tamil Vidiyalayam in Thambalakamam, in Trincomalee district. Sri Lankan government has recently changed the name to the Sinhala version "Thambalagamuwa" and is using the new name in its all-official transactions, residents said.
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Parcel containing ammunitions found in Wattala

[TamilNet, Sunday, 19 February 2006, 11:35 GMT]
Municipal road clearing workers found a parcel containing ammunitions in a garbage bin in Wattala Colombo near the Hunupitty Railway station at 8 a.m. Sunday, sources in Colombo said.
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Limited press access to talks at Geneva Ecumenical Institute

[TamilNet, Sunday, 19 February 2006, 00:41 GMT]
Talks on Cease Fire Agreement (CFA) between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam scheduled for 22-23rd February are to be held at Conference center of Ecumenical Institute, Chateau de Bossey located 22 km northwest of Geneva. Press access to the talks are limited to the opening statements on Wednesday and to the media briefing immediately after the adjournment of the talks on Thursday, a press release from the Swiss officials said.
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Sarvodhaya holds Peace meditation campaign in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Saturday, 18 February 2006, 16:55 GMT]
Sarvodhaya Movement of Sri Lanka held a peace meditation campaign in the Trincomalee esplanade on the third day of the four-day workshop Saturday evening held for about six hundred youths from all the twenty administrative districts of Sri Lanka, civil society sources said. Dr.A.T.Ariyaratne, leader of the Sarvodhaya Movement said his organizationis planning to hold a mass prayer with peace meditation campaign in Anuradhapura soon.
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Japan Red Cross assists Trinco eye patients

[TamilNet, Saturday, 18 February 2006, 16:53 GMT]
The Japan Red Cross Society (JRCS) recently donated a 46 seater-airconditioned bus to the Trincomalee district branch of the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society (SLRCS) under the Sight Restoration and Vision Correction Project (SRVCP) to transport eye patients from Trincomalee district to Kandy general hospital for cataract operations. Trincomalee hospital has the facility to perform only 15 operations per week and cannot meet the current demand, JRCS sources said.
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Swiss officials welcome LTTE delegation in Geneva

[TamilNet, Saturday, 18 February 2006, 15:47 GMT]
The 12-member Liberation Tigers delegation arrived at the Geneva airport at 4.30 a.m. Saturday morning to attend the peace talks with the Government of Sri Lanka on 22-23rd February, and was met at the air port by the Swiss Foreign Ministry officials headed by Ms. Sidonia Gabriel (Programme officer, Peace Policy, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs), sources in Geneva said. Liberation Tigers Chief Negotiator and Political Strategist Mr. Anton Balasingham is expected to join the delegation on Monday afternoon, according to LTTE sources.
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ITAK fields Muslim candidates for Jaffna elections

[TamilNet, Saturday, 18 February 2006, 14:04 GMT]
"To show that Muslims and the Tamils have been living in harmony in the NorthEast and to further reinforce the amity between the two peoples we are competing on the Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK) ticket for the forthcoming Jaffna Municipal Council elections," said Moulavi S. M. Shahil and S. M .Suhair in a press meet held in Jaffna Saturday afternoon.
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LTTE releases second Sri Lanka policeman

[TamilNet, Saturday, 18 February 2006, 11:56 GMT]
Following the Sri Lanka Government facilitated release of four LTTE sea tiger cadres in Trincomalee, Liberation Tigers released a policeman held in custody for more than five months as a goodwill gesture ahead of Geneva Talks, Daya Master from the media section of the LTTE said from Kilinochchi Saturday.
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Grenade attack on Batticaloa TELO office

[TamilNet, Saturday, 18 February 2006, 11:37 GMT]
Unidentified attackers hurled grenades at the the Batticaloa Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO) offices located at the Sri Sabaratnam Road in Batticaloa town Friday night 9.30 p.m., sources said. Explosions destroyed a motorbike parked in front of the building and damaged the front entrance of the building. No one was reported injured.
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UPFA to contest three Jaffna local councils

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 16:26 GMT]
Ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) is contesting three local councils in Jaffna district, Chavakachcheri, Point Pedro and Valvettithurai urban councils, and has submitted nomination papers for these councils, election officials in Jaffna said. For the Jaffna Municipal Council only three political parties Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK), Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) and PLOTE-EPRLF (Varathar wing) have submitted nominations.
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Mannar civilian detained in Colombo

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 16:23 GMT]
The Mannar Citizens Committee (MCC) has appealed to the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) to take steps to obtain the release of a Tamil civilian Mr.Jesuthasan Kamalathasan of Pesalai who is being detained at the Terrorist Investigative Division (TID) of the Sri Lanka Police, sources said. The Police following a grenade attack at the army post located near Mannar hospital premises on January 16 took him into custody. An SLA soldier was killed in this incident.
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Trinco Muslims protest against Denmark

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 16:21 GMT]
Several hundred Muslims Friday afternoon held a protest rally in the Trincomalee esplanade after Jumma prayers against the publication of caricatures of Prophet Mohamed in newspapers in Denmark. Muslim businessmen closed their shops and other establishments in Trincomalee bazaar throughout the day, sources said.
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Verugal PS Chairman, Deputy to be appointed within 7 days

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 16:19 GMT]
Mr.M.M.S.K.Bandara Mapa, Trincomalee District Assistant Commissioner of Elections has written a letter to the General Secretary of the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchchi (ITAK) to nominate two candidates for the post of Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Verugal Pradesiya Sabah in the Trincomalee district within seven day's period, on or before February 23, sources said Friday. ITAK was elected unopposed to the Verugal PS when the final date of nomination closed on Thursday, election department sources said.
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Trinco court releases four LTTE cadres

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 12:37 GMT]
Mr.V.Ramakamalan, Trincomalee Magistrate Friday ordered the release of four LTTE cadres who were arrested in 2005 by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) when they were traveling in a boat in the Trincomalee Sea on bail. Four LTTE cadres, S.Shanmugaraj, Xavier Ranjit, S.Vijayakumar and Luxmanan Aravinthan were immediately taken to Wanni under the escort of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), legal sources said.
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Lt Col Ponnamman's 19th anniversary celebrated

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 12:28 GMT]
Leader of Liberation Tigers, V Pirapaharan, paid respects to LTTE's Senior Commander Lt Col Ponnamman at an undisclosed LTTE camp in Vanni Friday, at the ninteenth rememberance anniversary, sources in Kilinochchi said.
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NGOs in Kilinochchi demand release of TRO staffers

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 11:23 GMT]
The Kilinochchi Federation of NGOs staged a peace protest march Friday 17th in Kilinochchi at 10 am, demanding the release of the seven employees of the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), abducted at gun point and held captive for more than 20 days in the Wellikanda region by paramilitaries. The marchers condemned the abductors and demanded that the TRO staffers be released immediately.
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LTTE delegation leaves Kilinochchi for Geneva

[TamilNet, Friday, 17 February 2006, 11:21 GMT]
Liberation Tigers delegation left Kilinochchi Friday morning to participate in negotiations with Government of Sri Lanka(GOSL) facilitated by the Norwegian Government in Geneva, Switzerland scheduled to be held February 22-23. Head of LTTE Political Wing, Mr Thamilchelvan, told the media before leaving Kilinochchi that the talks will discuss ways to implement February 2002 Truce agreement between the parties who are meeting for direct talk after more than three years. The delegation departed Kilinochchi grounds in a Sri Lanka Air Force( SLAF) helicopter around 9:00 am Friday.
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Local Government polls on 30 March

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 February 2006, 18:21 GMT]
The Sri Lankan Elections Commissioner announced Thursday evening that elections to all local government bodies in the island will be held on 30 March.
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105 nominations accepted, 26 rejected in Amparai

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 February 2006, 16:37 GMT]
Twenty-six nomination lists out of 131 submitted by political parties and independent groups were rejected by the Amparai District Returning Officer Thursday for failing to furnish requirements as stated in the election law. Till noon Thursday 57 independent groups and fourteen registered political parties have submitted their nomination lists, election department sources said.
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Three suspects arrested for transporting explosives to Mannar

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 February 2006, 16:36 GMT]
Mannar Police Thursday arrested three persons, two Muslims and a Sinhalese, in two separate incidents when they were allegedly transporting dynamite sticks from outstations to Mannar Island. The Police recovered 125 dynamite sticks from one incident and about 100 in the other, police sources said.
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Health Center opened in Vakarai

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 February 2006, 14:14 GMT]
The opening of a Day-Care Center with Nutritious Park constructed by the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) at a cost of two million rupees and a Health Center with the funding of Tamil Cultural Society of Manitoba (Canada) and Hindu Society of Manitoba (Canada) and implemented by Trincomalee TRO took place Wednesday at Vakarai village in the Batticaloa district at two separate events.
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ITAK uncontested in Verugal local council

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 February 2006, 11:41 GMT]
Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchchi (ITAK) was elected uncontested in the Verugal Pradesiya Sabah in the Trincomalee district when submission of nomination lists for the thirteen local authorities closed Thursday at noon. Mr.Bandara Mapa, Assistant Commissioner of Elections said the Commissioner of Elections would take further steps regarding the appointment of chairman and vice chairman for the Verugal PS soon, election department sources said.
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UNP Colombo list rejected

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 February 2006, 09:09 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s election office has rejected the nomination list submitted by the main opposition United National Party (UNP) to contest Colombo Municipal Council. The nominations closed on Thursday noon at 12.
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Dissanayake released

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 15 February 2006, 18:26 GMT]
Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse, Wednesday, ordered the release of S.B.Dissanayake, a senior politician from United National Party (UNP), who was serving a two year jail term for his criticisms of Sri Lanka's Supreme Court, a media release from the President's office said.
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Remembrance day for slain students held in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 15 February 2006, 16:30 GMT]
Forty-fifth day remembrance of five Tamil students shot dead by State armed forces in execution style close to the Trincomalee beach on January 2nd this year was held at the same location Wednesday morning attended by large number of students, parents, teachers and members of public. The Trincomalee District Tamil Peoples' Forum and Students' Association organized the event, sources in Trincomalee said.
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TNA, UPFA, SLMC to contest Mannar local council elections

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 15 February 2006, 16:27 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) Wednesday submitted its nomination list to contest the Musali pradesiya Sabah in the Mannar district. Meanwhile the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) has decided to contest all the five local authorities in the Mannar district in the forthcoming local council election, sources said.
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JVP to contest in 11 local councils in Amparai

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 15 February 2006, 12:58 GMT]
Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), the marxist alliance of Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse, has filed nominations to contest in 11 local councils of Amparai district, political sources in Amparai said. Amparai district has one Municipal council, one Urban council and 16 Pradeshya Sabahs. 396453 voters will use 391 polling booths for voting for during the local council elections.
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TNA submits nominations for Trinco local poll

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 15 February 2006, 12:06 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Wednesday morning submitted nomination lists to contest eleven local authorities out of thirteen in the Trincomalee district in the forthcoming local elections. Mr.K.Thurairatnasingham, Trincomalee district parliamentarian handed over the nomination lists to the District returning Officer Mr.Bandara Mapa at the latter's office, sources said.
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Tigers respond to Rajapakse's statement

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 15 February 2006, 09:47 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, on Wednesday, responded to SL President Mahinda Rajapakse's recent interview where he rejected the Tamil call for self-rule. "Homeland, nationhood and self-rule are the three basic and cardinal principles," that have been guiding the LTTE in its struggle to find a peacefully negotiated political arrangement, a statement from the LTTE reiterated. If Colombo adopts a political stand ruling out the Tamil homeland concept and insists on a resolution to conflict within the "Sinhala" constitution, the LTTE would be left with "no alternative other than to endeavour hard to respond effectively to the Tamil call for self rule," the statement said.
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Major political parties to file nominations Wednesday

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 15:59 GMT]
Major political parties, the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA), main opposition United National Party (UNP), Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC), and Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) are to submit their nomination lists from Wednesday to contest the 330 local authorities, which include 18 municipal councils, 42 urban councils and 270 pradesiya sabahs, election department sources said.
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Peace delegation Muslim representative still to be appointed

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 15:57 GMT]
Muslim parliamentarians at a meeting held Tuesday in parliamentary complex decided to submit two proposals to President Mahinda Rajapakse on the question of including a Muslim representative in the government delegation, which is to participate in the Geneva talks with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on February 22 and 23 on strengthening the ceasefire agreement, sources said.
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JVP to contest alone in local council elections

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 15:56 GMT]
The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), the Sinhala Marxist party officially announced Tuesday that it has decided to contest alone in the forthcoming local authorities elections under its symbol 'Bell". The decision to contest alone was taken after the failure of the talks held between the JVP and the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) in the allocation of candidates under an election alliance, a JVP official said at a press briefing held Tuesday, sources said.
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State of Emergency extended till March 7

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 15:53 GMT]
Sri Lankan parliament Tuesday extended the State of Emergency for another month till March 7. Mr.Ratnasiri Wickremanayake, Prime Minister and the Deputy Defense Minister moved the extension motion when the parliament resumed its sitting Tuesday. The State of Emergency was declared last year on August 13, the day after Mr.Lakshman Kadirgamar, Foreign Minister was assassinated at his residence in Colombo. Since then the State of Emergency has been extended every month with the approval of the parliament, sources said.
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No Tamil Eelam, only devolution within Unitary State- Rajapakse

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 12:57 GMT]
Ruling out demands by the Liberation Tigers for a separate homeland in the NorthEast, Sri Lanka's President Rajapakse in an interview with Reuters ahead of Geneva talks said, "This is a small country, where you can't have two states. I won't allow the country to be divided," he added. "You have to give up the concept of having two nations, or two countries … There is no Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka. There cannot be an Eelam."
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Trincomalee fisher families suffer due to fishing ban

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 12:03 GMT]
Several hundred fishermen in the Trincomalee district are undergoing immense hardship to earn for their livelihood due to the fishing ban and other restrictions imposed by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) since second week of January, fisheries sources in Trincomalee said. SLN has banned fishing inside the inner harbor and the outer harbor between the Koneswaram rock and Fowl Point following an attack on naval gunboat.
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Judge orders Police to remove Road block in Kayts

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 11:36 GMT]
Jaffna Acting District Court Judge Ms Srinithi Nanthisekaran, Monday, directed Kayts Police to remove the road block built across the Hospital road that leads to Kayts Police station, civil society sources said.
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HSZ villagers face displacement due to SLA harassment

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 11:07 GMT]
Residents of villages located close to the Point Pedro harbor High Security Zone (HSZ) face imminent displacement due to increasing harassment by the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers of the 52-4 Brigade located in Point Pedro, said civil society organizations in complaints registered with the Human Rights Commission and the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission in Jaffna Monday, sources in Jaffna said.
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Civil society forum appeals for release of TRO workers

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 February 2006, 10:57 GMT]
A Civil Society Forum that included FORUT, Berghof Foundation, INFORM, Inpact, CHA (Consortium of Humanitarian Agencies), and Tamils Rehabilitation Organization (TRO), on 10 February passed a resolution appealing to the Sri Lanka government to fully investigate and secure the release of the seven remaining TRO personnel in the custody of the abductors. The group extended their support to the families of those abducted and expressed the wish that their loves ones be returned to them soon, sources said.
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Eastern volunteer teachers demand permanency

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 17:43 GMT]
Eastern Province Volunteer Teachers' Association has decided to launch a fast unto death campaign if the Ministry of Education fails to make all volunteer teachers permanent without delay before the forthcoming local authorities poll. The decision was taken at a special meeting of the association held in Ninthavur Al-Ashrak National School recently attended by seven hundred and twenty four volunteer teachers, sources said.
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Political parties prepare strategy for local council elections

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 17:43 GMT]
All main political parties are to submit nominations to contest the forthcoming elections to three hundred and thirty local authorities in the island from Tuesday. The final day to submit nomination lists has been fixed for Thursday February 16. Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), which worked for the victory of Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse at the last year presidential poll is to contest the local council election alone without forming an alliance with the ruling party, political sources said.
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Dissanayake loses appeal to retain parliamentary seat

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 17:42 GMT]
The appeal of Mr.S.B.Dissanayake, national organizer of the main opposition United National Party (UNP), seeking the court to order that the contempt of court charge under which he was jailed was not an offence under the Penal Code and that he is entitled to be a parliamentarian without losing his seat, was dismissed by the Supreme Court Monday after inquiry, legal sources said.
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Sri Lanka Muslims demand separate delegation in peace talks

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 17:41 GMT]
The Muslim Peace Secretariat (MPS) Tuesday made an appeal that a separate Muslim delegation should be allowed not only to participate in the Geneva peace talks between the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) scheduled to be held in February 22 and 23 but also in the future talks on resolving the national conflict, media sources said.
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Paramilitary grenades miss TELO leader

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 17:19 GMT]
Unidentified attackers lobbed grenades into Thamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO) Batticaloa office wounding a party official around 7:45 p.m. Monday Police said. TELO officials alleged paramilitary cadres had targeted Indrakumar Prasanna, who is the General Secretary of TELO, a party in the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) coalition. Mr. Indrakumar is the Chief Candidate representing the Tamil National Alliance in Batticaloa Municipal Council elections. TELO office is located on Sri Sabaratnam Road in Sri Lanka Army (SLA) High Security area in Batticaloa Town.
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Batticaloa Buddhist priest on fast to death campaign

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 12:52 GMT]
Ven. Ampitiya Sumanarathna Thero, the chief priest of the Batticaloa Sri Mangalaramaya Buddhist Vihara, has begun a fast unto death campaign Monday at 9.30 am, protesting against lack of interest by authorities in resolving hardships faced by Batticaloa residents and for not providing adequate security to his temple, sources in Batticaloa said.
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TNA to contest local council poll in Mannar district

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 12:01 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) is to contest all the five local authorities, one urban council ( UC ) four pradesiya sabahs (PS), in the Mannar administrative district in the forthcoming local election, Mr.S.Vinoharathalingam, Wanni district TNA parliamentarian said Monday.
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Judge orders SLN suspect to be produced in Tharsini murder case

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 11:56 GMT]
Acting Judge of Jaffna District Court, Ms Srinithi Nanthisekaran, Monday, directed the Kayts Police to produce the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) soldier whose Navy cap with legible identification number was found near the well where the body of Ilayathamby Tharsini (20) was found on 18 December in Punguduthivu, legal sources in Jaffna said.
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TNA MPs to boycott parliament proceedings

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 11:37 GMT]
Mavai Senathirajah, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian for Jaffna district, told TamilNet Monday that all TNA parliamentarians, as part of the on-going protest against escalating violence in NorthEast, will abstain from participating in parliamentatry proceedings this week.
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UNICEF welcomes sharp decline in under-age youths joining LTTE

[TamilNet, Monday, 13 February 2006, 00:46 GMT]
UNICEF representatives expressed satisfaction in the sharp decline of the number of under-age youths joining the ranks of the Liberation Tigers after the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE, during a meeting held with the LTTE's Child Protection Unit at the LTTE Peace Secretariat building Sunday, LTTE officials said.
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Harvard experts too pro-Tiger, too liberal, says Govt. paper

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 February 2006, 20:19 GMT]
"It [Sri Lanka Government Peace Team] learnt that two Harvard specialists who were coaching the peace team on some aspects of conflict resolution, for instance, were thought of as being too liberal and possibly too pro Tiger in their views," said Sri Lanka's state-run paper Sunday Observer in its latest edition. The paper also quoted a source close to the consultation process as saying, "Harvard and other institutions of repute, may wittingly or otherwise place Sri Lankan strategy in channels that could be available to the Tigers."
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Tamil educators honored in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 February 2006, 16:33 GMT]
Mr.E.J.Satkunarajah, former Secretary to the North East Provincial Education Ministry and who rendered valuable service for the development of the science education in the province and Mr.S.Kathirgamathamby, retired Principal of Chenaiyoor Central College in Muttur east who contributed his teaching career for the education development of rural students were honored at an event held Sunday evening at Trincomalee Vikneswara Maha Vidiyalayam. Trincomalee District Student Examination Centre organized the event, sources said.
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Red Cross constructs permanent houses for Trinco tsunami victims

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 February 2006, 16:30 GMT]
Mr.S.Nimalkumar, National Secretary of the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society (SLRCS) Sunday morning laid the foundation stone for a permanent housing project for tsunami affected Sinhalese families in the Trincomalee town and its suburbs at Sumedhankarapura, located at 5th Mile Post along Trincomalee-Kandy highway. The Japan Red Cross Society (JRCS) has been funding three permanent housing projects for tsunami affected families through the Trincomalee district SLRCS, SLRCS sources said.
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TNA to contest eleven local councils in Trinco district

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 February 2006, 16:27 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) is to contest eleven of thirteen local authorities in the Trincomalee administrative district in the forthcoming election to local councils. TNA will submit nomination lists for two urban councils (UC) and nine pradesiya sabahs (PS) under the election symbol, House, of the Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kadchchi (ITAK), TNA sources said.
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Swedish Tamils assist Muttur children's home

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 February 2006, 02:05 GMT]
Expatriate Tamils' Consortium in Sweden has provided financial assistance for the Mother Sarathathevi Girls Home in Mallikaitivu village in the Muttur division as part of an ongoing effort to support assist the administration in day to day running of the children's home. The Girls home was founded in 1994 to give shelter to children who lost their parents in the war. Sarathathevi Girls Home currently looks after 30 girls, sources said
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Kumarapuram massacre victims remembered

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 17:06 GMT]
People of Kumarapuram, a village in Killiveddy area, Saturday observed the 10th death anniversary of twenty four Tamil civilians, including children massacred by a group of soldiers of the Sri Lanka Army ( SLA ) on 11th February 1996. Thirty Tamil villagers were seriously injured in the incident. Kumarapuram, which lies about 32 km south of Trincomalee town by sea, comes under the administrative limit of the Muttur Divisional Secretariat.
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Boat explosion reported off Mannar, four feared killed

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 13:58 GMT]
At least four persons were feared killed in an explosion involving a boat off the seas of Pesalai in Mannar, Saturday afternoon Police said. Sri Lankan Police said those on board the suspect vessel set the explosion that destroyed the boat when a Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) vessel tried to intercept the boat. Meanwhile, fishermen in Pesalai, expressed fears that the victims could be civilians travelling in a boat with high horsepower engines, that came under RPG fire from the SLN vessel.
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Minister assures phased troop reduction near NorthEast schools

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 13:54 GMT]
Mr. Susil Premajayanth, Minister of Education, at a meeting with a Ceylon Tamil Teachers Union (CTTU) delegation held Thursday evening at his ministry office in Colombo, assured the CTTU officials that he would take action to reduce the presence of State armed forces and sentry points from the vicinity of schools in the North East in stages. He said that Sri Lanka government has to implement any changes regarding SLA troops without provoking the extreme elements in the South, CTTU officials attending the meeting said.
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Muttur Magistrate visits prison, addresses prisoners rights

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 13:45 GMT]
Mr.Manickavasagar Ganesharajah, Muttur Magistrate Thursday paid a surprise visit to Trincomalee prison and inquired from the prison authorities about the grievances of suspects in remand and the facilities provided to them to communicate with their relatives. The Magistrate then inspected section where underage boys and those committed minor offences are kept, legal sources said
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Batticaloa local elections to select 128 councilors

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 13:25 GMT]
318,728 registered voters in twelve local authorities will go to polls to elect 128 councilors in the forthcoming election in the Batticaloa district, said Mr.T.Krishnandalingam, Batticaloa District Returning Officer and District Assistant Commissioner of Elections. One municipal council and one urban council are among the twelve local authorities, election department sources said.
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Vidathaltivu war victims receive income generating aid

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 13:14 GMT]
Seven hundred thousand rupees were distributed to fifty beneficiaries from war affected families in the Vidathaltivu in Mannar district Thursday afternoon at an event presided by the Vidathaltivu Village Co-ordinator, Mr Palisu, sources in Mannar said. The income generating project was implemented by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) funded North East Community Restoration Development (NECORD).
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Kidnappers release businessman in Colombo

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 09:34 GMT]
The Tamil millionaire businessman Anandan Vadivel, who was kidnapped in Colombo on Wednesday, was left at a private hospital by the kidnappers Friday night, family members said.
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Building for NE special educational projects opened

[TamilNet, Saturday, 11 February 2006, 00:52 GMT]
Mr.S.Rangarajah, Chief Secretary of the North East Provincial Council (NEPC) Friday afternoon declared open a newly constructed three storied building at a cost of 11.6 million rupees by the Provincial Ministry of Education to house the offices of the five special educational projects now being implemented in the North East.
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Vavuniya youth reported missing

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 19:01 GMT]
Sithamparanathan Thamileesan, 24, from Vavuniya, has been reported missing since his departure to Colombo on December 15th, his relatives said in a complaint to the Vavuniya Human Rights Commission (HRC), officials of HRC said.
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Profiles of TRO abductees released

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 18:54 GMT]
Tamils Rehabilitation Organization (TRO), Friday, released the family background and employment details of the seven employees abducted during the week of January 30, allegedly by paramilitaries, and still being held in captivity.
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Ashraff wants Muslims to pray for Geneva talks success

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 18:33 GMT]
Ms Ferial Ashraff, leader of the National Unity Alliance and the Minister for Housing Friday appealed to Muslim to pray for the success of peace talks scheduled to be held in Geneva on February 22 and 23. She declared open of an office of the NUA Friday in Amparai. She is also the Amparai district parliamentarian, sources said.
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TRO expresses dismay, concern over Govt. allegations of non-cooperation

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 13:28 GMT]
Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) expressed "dismay and concern" over allegations made to the media by Sri Lanka's Foreign Minister, Mangala Samaraweera, and Cabinet spokesperson Priyadharsana Yapa, that TRO was not helping with ongoing investigations. TRO refuted these statements as politically motivated propaganda by the Sri Lanka Government aimed at discrediting the TRO, TRO officials told TamilNet. TRO said in a press release issued Friday from Colombo that it is fully cooperating with the investigations, and has provided detailed account of the actions taken by TRO from the time of abductions.
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Eastern Muslims protest against Prophet Mohamed cartoons

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 12:35 GMT]
Several hundred Muslims Friday held demonstrations after Jumma prayers in front of mosques in Sammanthurai, Maruthamunai and Ninthavur protesting against publication of caricatures of Prophet Mohamed, first published in newspapers of Denmark and later carried by newspapers in several European countries, sources in the east said.
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TNA MPs meet British Deputy High Commissioner

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 12:06 GMT]
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Members of Parliament, Mavai Senathirajah, Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam, S. Jeyanandamoorthy and Sithamparanathan Pathmini met the British deputy high commissioner Lesley Craig, at the British High Commission in Colomobo on Friday at 10:00 a.m. and discussed the current humanitarian situation following the abductions and the escalating number of assassinations in the NorthEast, TNA sources said.
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Five parties to contest in Jaffna Local Council elections

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 11:26 GMT]
Five political parties have expressed interest to contest in local elections in Jaffna district, Jaffna election officials said. Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP), Peoples Liberation Organization of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), and Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK- Federal party), are expected to contest in all regions in Jaffna district whereas All Ceylon Muslim Congress and Muslim Congress will compete only in Jaffna Municipal Council, sources said.
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Businessman's kidnappers demand 20 million rupees ransom

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 07:14 GMT]
The kidnappers of a Tamil businesman, Vadivel Anandan, who was abducted Wednesday night in Colombo, have demanded a 20 million Lankan rupees ransom for his release, family members told media Friday. The abductors, who allowed the businessman to call his family members for two minutes on Thursday, have threatened not to divulge any information to the Police.
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Muslim farmer shot, injured in Akkaraipattu

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 06:43 GMT]
Mr.W.L.Najeebdeen aged 44 of First Division in Akkaraipattu in the Amparai district was shot and injured Friday morning around 8.00 a.m. by unidentified person when he was going to see harvesting in his paddy field which is located in Aanaivilunthan in Alankulam area. He was immediately admitted to the Amparai general hospital, police sources said.
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Local elections will highlight Upcountry Tamils' unity- Chandrasekaran

[TamilNet, Friday, 10 February 2006, 01:40 GMT]
"In the forthcoming local elections, Hillcountry Tamils should unite to initiate a joint action program to increase their representation, and create the foundation for strengthening the political power and unity of Sri Lanka's Tamil people." said Thamilchelvan, leader of LTTE political wing, during the discussions he had with the Leader of Upcountry Peoples Front (UPF), Periyasamy Chandrasekaran, at the LTTE Peace Secretariat in Kilinochchi Wednesday morning, a media release from the UPF said.
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SLMM head meets Elilan in Sampoor

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 16:42 GMT]
Mr.Hagrup Haukland, Head of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission Thursday morning held a wide ranging discussion with Mr.S.Elilan, LTTE Trincomalee district political head at LTTE district political secretariat which is located at Sampoor in the LTTE held Muttur east territory in Trincomalee district, LTTE sources said.
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Batticaloa farmers discriminated in compensation payments-TNA MP

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 16:40 GMT]
Mr.T.Kanagasabai, Batticaloa district Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian, made an urgent appeal to the Minister of Agriculture not to show racial discrimination in paying compensation to farmers whose paddy crops had been destroyed due to flood by heavy rain during the end of last year, sources said.
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238,755 persons qualified to vote in Trinco local election

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 16:37 GMT]
Trincomalee Election Office has made arrangement to accept nominations lists from registered political parties and independent groups to contest thirteen local authorities including two Urban Councils (UC) and eleven Pradesiya Sabah (PS) from Thursday February 9 till 16th February. Till Thursday deposits were made on behalf of two Muslim independent groups, one for Kinniya UC and other for Kuchchaveli PS. Altogether 118 councilors will be elected for the thirteen local authorities, sources said.
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TRO opens first Sinhala pre-school in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 12:21 GMT]
The first pre-school constructed by the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) for Sinhalese children in the Trincomalee district with the funding of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) at a cost of one 150,000 rupees was declared open Thursday morning, in Vijithapura, a Sinhala suburb in the Trincomalee town. The institution has been named Sumathi Pre-School.
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Missing TRO worker asked to appear at Welikanda Police station

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 11:41 GMT]
In a letter addressed to the Gramasevaka Officer in Palugamam, Police in Kaluwangikudi has asked the one of the seven TRO staffers, abducted by unknown gunmen last week and still missing, to appear at the Welikande Police station on the 10th February 10 a.m., Friday, TRO sources in Colombo said.
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GoSL delegation announced for Geneva talks

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 11:14 GMT]
The Sri Lankan delegation to the talks in Geneva would comprise of SL Ministers Nimal Sripala De Silva, Jeyaraj Fernandopulle and Rohitha Bogollagama, said Sri Lanka's cabinet spokesman, Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, on Thursday, sources in Colombo said. Talks in Geneva between the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) are scheduled for 22-23rd February.
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Preparations ahead of Geneva talks should focus on people's plight - Thamilchelvan

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 07:58 GMT]
"One of the key issues in the February 2002 Cease Fire Agrement was ensuring a safe life to the civilians in Sri Lanka military controlled areas of the Tamil homeland," Liberation Tigers Political Head Mr. S. P. Thamilchelvan told media, following a preparatory meeting with the Ambassadors of Norway and Swtizerland, at the LTTE Peace Secretariat in Kilinochchi Thursday. "It is therefore vital that the team participating in the talks, study the ground situation prevailing in Sri Lanka Army (SLA) controlled areas," he added.
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Abuse of political power led to Judges resignations, says State Bar

[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 February 2006, 00:01 GMT]
The resignation of two Senior Judges of the three-member Judicial Commission (JSC) of Sri Lanka, has caused shock and alarm within the legal community, civil society and trade unions in Colombo. The resignations, reported on the eve of Sri Lanka's 58th anniversary of gaining Independence, were due to the "simmering state of discontent prevailing for some time within the Judicial Service Commission," said Desmond Fernando, President, Bar Association of Sri Lanka, addressing a press conference in Colombo Wednesday. The JSC which has authority over the appointment, transfer, dismissal and discipline of the judiciary, is rendered non functional with the resignations, he added.
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Tamil businessman abducted in Colombo

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 20:09 GMT]
A Tamil Jewellery shop owner was abducted by an unknown armed gang Wednesday night at 11.30 p.m. near his residence at Alexander Road in Wellawatte Colombo, sources said.
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Swedish Ambassador meets Jaffna NGOs, GA

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 18:57 GMT]
Mrs. Inga Eriksson Fogh, Swedish Ambassador to Sri Lanka, arrived in Jaffna Palaly airport Wednesday morning, sources in Jaffna said. The Ambassador spent the whole day Wednesday meeting civil leaders and representatives of relief organizations in Jaffna. [The Ambassador of Switzerland to Sri Lanka, Bernardino Regazzoni, did not travel to Jaffna. TamilNet regrets the error in the initial report.]
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Court dismisses writ application against holding local elections

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 18:18 GMT]
The Court of Appeal Wednesday afternoon dismissed the second Writ application filed by the main opposition United National Party (UNP) Tuesday afternoon against holding the local government elections. Mr.N.V.K.Weragoda, General Secretary of the UNP filed the second Writ of Prohibition seeking the Court of Appeal to prohibit the Commissioner of Elections from holding the local government elections until such time 2005 Voters Registers are prepared and published in terms of Local Authorities Election Ordinance. The petitioner cited the Commissioner of Elections as the respondent, legal sources said.
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Acceptance of nomination to local authority elections to begin

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 18:17 GMT]
Twenty five District Returning Officers will accept nomination lists from registered political parties and independent candidates from February 9 Thursday morning till noon on February 16 Thursday for forthcoming elections to three hundred and thirty local authorities in the island, Department of Elections announced.
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Mobile service to reissue tsunami destroyed student documents

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 18:16 GMT]
The Department of Examination has decided to conduct mobile service in schools in the coast areas affected by the tsunami with the objective of assisting students and teachers to obtain copies of their destroyed certificates and other documents needed for them to pursue their higher education or for employment purposes, sources said.
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Kandy UNP Local council members join SLFP

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 12:39 GMT]
United National Party (UNP) members of Urban Council and Pradeshya Sabah from Kandy district obtained membership in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) in a ceremony held at the Temple trees, office of the President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapakse, Tuesday, parliamentary sources in Colombo said.
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"Federal model, a durable solution to Sri Lanka's conflict"

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 12:20 GMT]
"A federal constitution offers a reasonable accommodation in a conflict where one side is committed to a unitary state and the other a separate state," a declaration passed at the National Symposium organised by the Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) on The Future of Sri Lanka and The Federal Idea held at the BMICH on 6th February 2006, said. Over a thousand participants agreed to the declaration, the organizers said.
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Colombo lacks will to resolve Tamil National question, says Banu

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 11:49 GMT]
"Disarming the paramilitaries, their expulsion and the creation of normalcy in people's daily life are the essential prerequisites for the continuation of peace talks. But Sri Lanka is unlikely to agree," said Colonel Banu, Batticaloa district military commander of Liberation Tigers, in the first memorial anniversary held in remembrance of Kowsalyan on Tuesday in Kowsalyan Education Centre at Ampilan in the Paduvankarai region of the Baticaloa district. Tamil National Alliance M.P for Batticaloa, S. Jeyanandamoorthy also participated and spoke at the event.
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Parents of abducted TRO staffers on protest journey to Welikanda

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 08 February 2006, 08:10 GMT]
Parents of five of the seven abducted humanitarian staffers of the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), on Wednesday, set off on a journey through Welikanda area in search of their sons and a daughter, relatives of the kidnapped humanitarian staffers in Batticaloa said. The families have decided to camp at a Hindu Temple in the Welikanda area until their family members are released, the sources added.
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Muslim council appeals for release of abducted TRO workers

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 17:29 GMT]
The Kinniya Jemiyathul Ulama Sabah (Islamic Theological Council) Tuesday appealed for the immediate release of the abducted workers of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO). The abduction would pose serious threat to take forward the peace process, a statement issued by the Kinniya Jemiyathul Ulama Sabah Tuesday said.
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Pesalai fishermen protest against Navy restriction

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 17:29 GMT]
Several hundreds of fishermen held a sit-in-protest blocking the Talaimannar-Mannar main road at Pesalai bazaar Tuesday morning from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. demanding the immediate withdrawal of restriction imposed by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) on day and night fishing. The SLN has directed the fishermen to obtain pass for them and their fishing crafts and other related equipments before leaving the shore for fishing daily morning. The SLN has banned night fishing, fisheries sources said.
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Trinco traders call off protest, open shops

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 17:28 GMT]
Traders in Trincomalee town called off their protest and opened their business establishments Tuesday following the arrest of three suspects, all of them from the majority community who were alleged to be involved in the assault of Muslim businessmen Sunday night. Muslim and Tamil traders in the Sinnakadai bazaar area closed their shops Monday in protest to the assault and went in procession to the Trincomalee Police Headquarters, sources said.
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TNA MP spotlights irregularities in teacher appointment

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 17:27 GMT]
Mr.S.Jeyananadamoorthy, Batticaloa District Tamil National Alliance parliamentarian has complained to the Minister of Education that several qualified volunteer teachers have been ignored when permanent appointments were given recently in the North East. He appealed to the Minister to take immediate steps to make them permanent, sources said.
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SLN arrests four Punguduthivu fishermen

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 15:12 GMT]
Four Punguduthivu fishermen who disappeared after going for deep sea fishing Sunday night were found to have been arrested by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) soldiers, sources from Jaffna said. The SLN has accused the fishermen of possessing explosive material in their boats.
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Japan provides boats, gear to tsunami affected fishermen

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 11:53 GMT]
In a ceremony held in Unawatuna, Galle on 27 January, the Government of Japan donated to 8 large fishing boats as part of a 40-boat gift program to tsunami affected fishermen from districts of Galle, Matara, Hambantota, Ampara, Batticaloa and Jaffna, a press release from the Embassy of Japan in Colombo, released 7 February said.
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Switzerland welcomes talks, Swiss Ambassador to visit Kilinochchi

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 11:16 GMT]
Government of Switzerland in a press release issued from Berne Monday welcomed the decision by the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers to hold talks on February 22-23 and called on "the parties to the conflict to do all within their powers to ensure that the talks can start in a constructive atmosphere." Mr. Hans Brattskar, Norwegian Ambassador to Sri Lanka and Mr. Bernadino Regazzoni, Switzerland Ambassador to Sri Lanka, will travel to Kilinochchi on Thursday to discuss preparatory arrangements for talks in Geneva with the LTTE Political Head Mr. S. P. Thamilchelvan, LTTE Peace Secretariat sources in Kilinochchi said.
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Jaffna SLA investigates public complaints

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 07 February 2006, 03:07 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) 51-2 brigade command has voluntarily set up an investigating committee to look into complaints against its own soldiers filed at the Human Rights Commission (HRC) by Jaffna district residents after December 2005, SLA sources in Jaffna said. As the first phase, HRC has provided a set of 23 complaints of harassment, torture and property thefts by the SLA soldiers from its files to the SLA commanders.
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Govt. rejects appeal to hold SLEAS examination in NorthEast

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 16:44 GMT]
Sri Lanka's Commissioner General of Examinations Monday rejected an appeal made by the Ceylon Tamil Teachers Union (CTTU) to postpone the Limited Competitive Examination of Sri Lanka Education Administrative Service Class III scheduled to be held only in Colombo on February 11 for a later date and also to take immediate steps to hold the examination in the northeast province to make it easy for the Tamil medium candidates to take the exams, sources said.
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Book on Baratha Natyam released in Mannar

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 16:44 GMT]
A research book on Baratha Natyam written by Miss Pavithra Edwin Christie of Mannar was released at an event held in Mannar Town Hall Monday evening. The author is a Fine Arts graduate passed out from Trichy Arts College in South India. Mr.Vithianantharasa, Principal of Mannar Siththivinayagar Hindu College presided.
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NCP Chief Minister appointed to lead Trincomalee development

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 16:43 GMT]
The President Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse has appointed Mr.Bertilal Dissanayake, Chief Minister of the North Central Province in charge of the development activities in the Trincomalee district. Mr.Dissanayake Monday presided over the conference held in Trincomalee district secretariat pertaining to the development of the district, district secretariat sources said.
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Truce talks in Geneva on February 22

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 15:34 GMT]
The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Monday evening informed the press that the parties to the conflict in Sri Lanka, the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, have asked Norway to facilitate talks in Geneva from 22 to 23 February. The announcement comes following the meeting between the Norwegian International Development Minister Mr. Erik Solheim and the Liberation Tigers Chief Negotiator and Political Strategist Mr. Anton Balasingham in London, and Mr. Solheim's consultations with the Government of Sri Lanka following his meeting with Mr. Balasingham.
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Colombo's bona fides on creating normalcy ahead of talks, questionable - paper

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 13:25 GMT]
Uthayan, the Jaffna based daily, in its Monday editorial warned of the potentially dangerous consequences of the attitude being displayed by the Sri Lankan Government insisting on its innocense and not taking urgent action to secure the release of the seven humanitarian workers of the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) in the east. Referring to the "strict adherence" by the Tamil side in living up to its pledge on the cessation of hostilities the last two weeks, since the meeting between Norwegian Peace Envoy and the LTTE leader commenced on January 25, the paper questioned whether Colombo has demonstrated its will to create a conducive environment in the run-up to the truce talks.
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Political parties finalize nomination lists for local polls

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 11:51 GMT]
The Writ Application filed by the Peoples Action for the Free and Fair Election (PAFFREL), a poll monitoring body in Sri Lanka, seeking the Court of Appeal to postpone the scheduled local government election for a period of six months is to be taken up for inquiry Monday (February 6) while the leaders of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), main constituent of the ruling party and its allies, Sri Lanka Communist Party, Lanka Sama Samaja Party and few small parties are to finalize their deal at a meeting scheduled to be held on the same day at Temple Trees presided by President Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse, political sources said.
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USAID, CPA hold symposium on federalism

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 11:23 GMT]
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), in partnership with the Center for Policy Alternatives (CPA), Monday held a symposium titled "The future of Sri Lanka and the federal idea," at Bandaranaike Memorial Center, Colombo, engaging more than 500 participants in a discussion on the history of the Sri Lanka's conflict, past attempts at negotiated settlements, and the basic facts about devolution of power and federalism, a press release issued by the US embassy in Colombo said Monday.
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Norwegian NGO condemns abduction of aid workers

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 11:12 GMT]
FORUT, a Norwegian non-Governmental Organizaton that works in Sri Lanka, said in a press release issued 2 February that it "condemned strongly the abduction of 10 workers from TRO in eastern Sri Lanka," and urged the "Government of Sri Lanka to give highest priority to the investigation of these abductions."
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Protest against kidnappings shuts down Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 09:12 GMT]
Entire Batticaloa district, on Monday, observed a shut down protest against the abductions of the seven humanitarian staffers of the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO). The protest, called by the employees of local and foreign NGOs, who abstained from work, also drew support from private businesses and public services. Shops and banks remained closed. Public offices and schools wore a deserted look. The fate of seven TRO staffers, who were abducted while travelling on the A11 Batticaloa - Polonnaruwa road, the Main Supply Route (MSR) of the Sri Lanka Army one week ago, is not yet known.
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Batticaloa Ramakrishna Mission head passes away

[TamilNet, Monday, 06 February 2006, 06:38 GMT]
Srimath Swami Geenavanandaji, Head of the Batticaloa Ramakrishna Mission passed away at the age of 82 on Saturday night in a private hospital in Batticaloa. His funeral is to be held Tuesday evening in the premises of Saratha Girls Home in Batticaloa. He was appointed head of the Batticaloa Ramakrishna Mission on 17th March 1967 and served the institution till his death. His body is now kept at the mission building in Kallady for paying last respects, mission sources said.
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Solheim to meet Balasingham Monday

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 16:36 GMT]
Norway's Minister of International Development, peace envoy, Erik Solheim, is scheduled to meet LTTE's Chief Negotiator and Political Strategist Mr. Anton Balasingham at Balasingham's London residence Monday, sources in London said. Norwegian Minister is expected to announce the date of the talks in Geneva between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers after the meeting, diplomatic sources in Colombo said.
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Ashraff demands regional education office in Amparai

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 15:56 GMT]
A regional office of the North East Education Ministry should be opened in Amparai without delay in order to facilitate teachers and principals of the district to fulfill their needs without traveling to Trincomalee and Colombo, said Minister Ms Ferial Ashraff at an event held in Amparai during the weekend, sources said.
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LTTE urges NGOs to expedite tsunami rehab in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 15:50 GMT]
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) appealed to non-governmental organizations working in the Batticaloa district to expedite their tsunami rehabilitation and reconstruction work as large number of affected families are living temporary structures fourteen months after the disaster. Mr.S.Elilan, Trincomalee district political head of the LTTE made this appeal at a conference held Friday in the office of the Vakarai Divisional Secretary attended by NGOs' representatives, sources said
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Ministry orders additional security to Power plants

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 15:47 GMT]
Sri Lanka's Power and Energy Ministry has issued a warning that the security of all power generating plants should be strengthened immediately, and to consider the surrounding areas of these plants as high security zones, ministry sources said.
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WorldBank, ADB to brief media on tsunami reconstruction

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 15:44 GMT]
The representatives of the World Bank (WB) and Asian Development Bank (ADB) are scheduled to meet the media Monday, February 6, in Colombo to discuss the current state of tsunami and post conflict reconstruction and rehabilitation work. The press conference is to be held in the World Bank office, media sources in Colombo said.
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Southern Journalists meet counterparts, NGOs in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 15:13 GMT]
Nearly 30 journalists representing different media organizations in the South, met with Journalists from Jaffna district at the University of Jaffna Campus in Thinnaively at 3.30 p.m. Sunday, sources said. Head of Jaffna Journalists Union, K Kathirgamathamby, presided over the meeting.
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Halo Trust employee missing in Jaffna

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 14:43 GMT]
An employee of Halo Trust, an NGO engaged in mine clearing operations in Jaffna, is reported missing from Saturday night, sources from Jaffna said. Gunaratnam Logithas, 23, from Kaithady in Jaffna district, was travellling to Chavakachcheri from his home in his motorbike when he was reported disappeared.
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Karunanidhi to apprise Delhi on Sri Lanka Tamil issues

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 06:31 GMT]
Leader of Upcountry Peoples Front (UPF), Periyasamy Chandrasekaran, said in a letter dated 1 February to Dr. Kalaignar M. Karunanithi, President of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhaham of Tamil Nadu, for his early attention to meet India's Prime Minister and Mrs Sonia Ghandi and to release a statement to the media on Sri Lanka Army (SLA) harassment of NorthEast Tamils, UPF media section said.
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Released TRO staffers to register complaint with HRC

[TamilNet, Sunday, 05 February 2006, 04:59 GMT]
Head of Tamils Rehabilitation Organization (TRO), K.P.Regi, told TamilNet Sunday, that his staff are making arrangements to get the three released TRO workers later Sunday to register complaint with the Human Rights Commission (HRC). "We feel that it is important that released staffers meet with an impartial group such as the Rights Commision, so that facts about the abduction, obtained without any coersion, can be presented to the public and to the International Community," said Mr Regi.
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Kattankudy teen injured in gunfire

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 20:00 GMT]
Nazar, 14, a muslim teenager, was seriously injured when he was accidently hit by gunfire from a muslim armed group during a drug related incident on Friday 8.30 p.m. at Apurahim road, Kattankudy in Batticaloa, source sin Batticaloa said.
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Vavuniya SLA trooper kills himself

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 19:41 GMT]
Premaratne Bandara, a Sri Lanka Army (SLA) trooper attached to the Kolluveli SLA camp, fatally shot himself at 4.30 p.m. Saturday, Vavuniya police said. Mr Bandara belongs to the armoured vehicle division of the SLA, military sources said.
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Court to hear FR petition from Kadirgamar-case detainee

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 18:01 GMT]
The Supreme Court Thursday granted leave to a suspect in the Kadirgamar assassination case to proceed with his Fundamental Rights (FR) application for the alleged infringement of his right to freedom from arbitrary arrest and detention. Mr.Sivarasan Sivaranjan, one of the suspects arrested and remanded in this case has filed this application seeking the court to order his immediate release and to order the State to pay compensation of Rs 500K to him, legal sources said.
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Rajapakse's Independence address avoids Geneva talks, Norway facilitation

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 16:24 GMT]
Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse, in his address at Galle Face on Sri Lanka's 58th Independence Day on Saturday, avoided mentioning Norwegian peace efforts and the critical talks in Geneva on strengthening implementation of Cease Fire Agreement. The Sri Lankan President, who promised "honorable peace" to the people of Northeast at his address, said the independence achieved 58 years ago from the British, was at stake. Meanwhile, districts of NorthEast observed widespread shutdown.
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"Sri Lanka, an Asian Gaza strip"

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 15:58 GMT]
Describing Sri Lanka's people as "talented, educated and ready for the globalization experience," and extolling Sri Lanka's virtues as a country that "could mature into a gem like Switzerland or Singapore, that it could offer the rest of the world an exemplary measure of hope," Prof Tom Plate of University of California, Los Angeles, says that two decades of conflict has converted the tourist postcard island into an Asian Gaza strip and that "things are getting worse. Its new, recently elected President, Mahinda Rajapakse, is demonstrating astonishing ineptitude," in an article that appeared on a UCLA Asia Media news journal, 3rd February.
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SLA mines injure Mannar elephants

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 15:37 GMT]
Three wild elephants which have sustained injuries from landmines buried in Ganshapuram along Sri Lanka Government controlled Mannar-Vavuniya Road Wednesday morning have crossed over into the jungles at the Madhu side. Wild Department officials and veterinary surgeons are reported to have refused to enter the forest located in the Liberation Tigers controlled area to treat the elephants, sources said.
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Uduthurai residents' long wait for tsunami help

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 15:01 GMT]
Tsunami affected families in Uduthurai village in Vadamarachchi east in Jaffna district Friday complained to the Government Agent that they are neglected by the government authorities in providing permanent houses even one year after the disaster. Uduthurai Rural Development Forum in a memorandum said that the people of Uduthurai have suffered immensely in war and tsunami losing their lives and properties compared to other areas in the Jaffna district, sources said.
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Valaichenai school principal returns

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 14:15 GMT]
Mr. M. Thavarajah, the principal of Valaichenai Hindu College, has returned home Saturday morning around 9:00 a.m. Denying that any kidnapping was involved in his temporary time away from his family, the principal said: "There is no truth in the reports that I was abducted," he told reporters when contacted over phone.
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TRO abductions, GoSL response may stall Geneva talks - TNA

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 14:10 GMT]
"We are concerned that the continued deterioration of ground situation in the NorthEast and the abduction of TRO staff members by paramilitaries can potentially prevent Liberation Tigers' participation in Geneva talks," said Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians after a meeting with Head of the LTTE Political Wing, S.P Thamilchelvan at the LTTE Peace Secretariat in Kilinochchi at 11 a.m. Saturday. "Colombo has openly attempted to discredit the LTTE by making misleading statements to the International Community on the recent abductions of TRO staff by the paramilitary cadres," they added. The meeting lasted for more than three hours sources in Kilinochchi said.
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Abductions, threat to peace, say US Congressmen

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 12:48 GMT]
United States Congressmen Sherrod Brown and Patrick Tiberi, in a letter to the Assistant Secretary of State for South Asian Affairs, Ms Christina Rocca said that the "situation surrounding the remaining abductees [seven TRO staffers] greatly threatens any peace negotiations that are in process unless the matter can be resolved quickly."
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Hartal observed in Trincomalee, Mannar

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 11:56 GMT]
Tamil residents in the districts of Trincomalee and Mannar observed a general shut down on the Independence Day to protest against the harassment by the State armed forces. Towns of Trincomalee and Mannar came to a standstill as normalcy was disrupted due to the stoppage of state and private sector bus services, sources said.
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Sri Lanka pardons prisoners on Independence Day

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 10:59 GMT]
None of those arrested under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and the Emergency Regulations (ER) were among the 2042 prisoners who were released on Presidential pardon on Sri Lanka's "Independence Day," Saturday. However, it was the first time some prisoners from the Northeast were released from the Sri Lankan prisons in Jaffna and Batticaloa. Meanwhile, the much-awaited release of Mr.S.B.Dissanayake, a political prisoner of the opposition UNP, did not take place.
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Reconstruction of 13,000 houses in NorthEast to begin

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 February 2006, 03:13 GMT]
The World Bank funded North East Housing Reconstruction Programme (NEHRP) has commenced the second phase reconstruction of 13000 houses for the war victim families in the NorthEast. NEHRP officials started distributing forms to collect necessary data to select qualified beneficiaries affected by the two decade-old war in the province to be included in the second phase, a press release of the NEHRP said.
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Court begins inquiry into Jaffna students FR application

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 17:55 GMT]
Sri Lanka's Supreme Court Thursday listed the Fundamental Rights (FR) application filed by fifteen Tamil students from the Jaffna district alleging discrimination in university admission for further hearing. The FR application came up for inquiry before a three member Bench of the Supreme Court comprising Justices Shiranee Bandaranaike, Raja Fernando and N.G.Amaratunge, legal sources said.
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Another TRO staffer released

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 13:53 GMT]
Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) Friday said in a press release that one of the abudcted TRO officials, Ms. S. Dosini, has returned to her relatives in Chenkalady. "Word has reached TRO through the Non-Violent Peace Force (NVPF) office in Batticaloa that Ms. S. Dosini, PSEDC Divisional Coordinator Mamunai North Division, has returned to the home of her relatives in Chenkalady, a Government of Sri Lanka controlled area of the Batticaloa District," the press release said. The fate of the remaining seven humanitarian workers is not yet known.
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Red Cross hands over fishing boats to tsunami affected

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 12:34 GMT]
One hundred and twenty five fishermen affected by tsunami from Colombo, Matara, Puttalam, Trincomalee and Kalutara districts received fishing boats from through a boat manufacturing project funded by the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society (SLRCS). The handing over of boats to beneficiaries took place in Ratmalana, Colombo Thursday, SLRCS sources said.
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Protest against Batticaloa abductions held in Mannar

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 12:26 GMT]
A protest demonstration attended by residents of Mannar and workers of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) was held Thursday in Mannar demanding the immediate release of abducted TRO workers in the Batticaloa district. At the conclusion of the demonstration Mr.S.Jesuthasan, Mannar District Director of the TRO handed over memorandum to the district head of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), District Government Agent, district heads of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka, UNHCR, and the Bishop of Mannar Diocese, sources said.
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Valaichenai school principal missing, school shuts down in protest

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 12:15 GMT]
Valaichenani Hindu College was shut down by the students and fellow teachers on Friday in protest against the alleged kidnapping of their principal Thursday. "The family of the principal is probably under threat and confusion. The truth is no one knows the fate of Mr. Thavarasa," a school teacher who did not wished to be named told TamilNet. The family is yet to file a complaint of their missing father, sources added.
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Underage paramilitary recruit attests to SLA-Karuna link

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 11:05 GMT]
A 15-year-old boy, recruited by the paramilitary cadres of Karuna Group, later sent on vacation, and who managed to move with his family into the Liberation Tigers held area in Ayithiyamalai, addressed a press meet at Solayaham in LTTE controlled Kokkaddicholai Friday. The underage youth, Arulraj, has revealed details on how he was abducted, transported to Thivuchenai and trained at the training camp of the paramilitary group at Thivuchenai in Welikande. Arularj, who was on leave, managed to escape as his "guardian", an EPDP cadre Rama Ranjan, who accompanied him to Batticaloa from Welikande, was gunned down by unidentified gunmen in mid-January.
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STF opens fire at hartal observers in Akkaraipattu

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 05:45 GMT]
Several civilians sustained minor injuries when Special Task Force (STF) soldiers opened fire at civilians observing hartal in Thirukovil area in Akkaraipattu Friday morning. The incident took place near Akkaraipattu-Pottuvil highway, sources said.
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Released TRO abductees detained at Batticaloa Police Station

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 04:55 GMT]
The two female staff of Tamils Rehabilitation Organization (TRO), who were released on Monday by the abductors, are being held at Batticaloa Police station from 2.00 p.m. Thursday, TRO officials in Colombo said. When the two women, against threats to their safety, went to file a police report at the insistence of Government authorities, they were detained at the Batticaloa Police Station overnight against their wishes, and they are to be held at the Police station until officials of Sri Lanka Criminal Investigation Division (CID) arrive from Colombo, said TRO in a press release issued Friday.
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Anbu Illam student wins poetry prize

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 01:27 GMT]
A student from Anbu Illam, a children's home in Trincomalee, won the first prize of ten thousand rupees in an island wide-open poetry competition conducted by a Norway Tamil group. Miss Pakiyaluxmy, an GCE A/L Bio-Science student, received her prize money and savings book from Mr.S.Kumaraguruparan, Trincomalee District Deputy Director of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organization. in a ceremony held at the children's home Thursday.
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UNP opposes parliament adjournment

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 19:50 GMT]
No bomb was recovered in the chamber of the parliament and the bomb scare was a ploy of the government to adjourn the parliament with a hidden agenda, said Mr.Tissa Attanayake, Deputy General Secretary of the main opposition United National Party (UNP) at a press briefing held Thursday evening.
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Trinco district local bodies increased to thirteen

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 19:49 GMT]
Two more local government bodies, Kinniya Urban Council (UC) and Verugal Pradesiya Sabah (PS), have been carved out in the Trincomalee district bringing the number of such institutions to thirteen, election department sources said.
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Vavuniya traders face intimidation by armed groups- TNA MP

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 19:48 GMT]
"Traders of Vavuniya have brought to my notice that they have become the target of intimidation by unidentified armed groups. The anonymous callers have demanded ransom of cash over the telephone. I am also informed that these men are using mobile phone for this purpose," said Mr.Selvam Adaikalanathan, Wanni district Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian in an urgent letter to the Sri Lanka President Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse.
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SLMC blames police partiality for Dharga Nagar violence

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 19:48 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) has requested the President Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse to appoint a Presidential Commission to inquire into the conduct of the Sri Lanka Police in the violence that took place in Dharga Nagar in Southern district Aluthgama. Mr.Rauff Hakim, SLMC leader alleged that the partiality of the Police had contributed to the escalation of the violence against the Muslim people in the area, sources said.
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SLA ransacks, destroys LTTE Vadamaradchy political offices

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 16:35 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers cordoned off and searched central Vadamaradchy villages of Alvai, Vathiry and Karaveddy Thursday morning, sources from Jaffna said. During the house-to-house search operations SLA also ransacked and caused damages to the Liberation Tigers' Political office located in Vathiry area, sources added.
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School principal not kidnapped, says son

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 15:45 GMT]
Mr. Arunkumar, son of Mr. M. Thavarasa, the principal of Valaichenai Hindu College, who was reported kidnapped Thursday noon, denied the reports that his father was kidnapped.
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SLA abduction of Kokuvil student averted

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 12:35 GMT]
Members of the Human Rights Commission (HRC) in Jaffna, Thursday morning were successful in forcing the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers from the 51-2 brigade in Jaffna to handover a student from Kokuvil who was illegally abducted while he was travelling with his sister in a motorbike along the Jaffna-Point Pedro Road near Jaffna town, sources in Jaffna said.
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Sri Lankan Parliament adjourned till February 14

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 07:54 GMT]
Sri Lankan parliament sessions were brought to an abrupt end Thursday morning following a bomb scare within the Chambers of the House. The drama began ealry Thursday when sniffing dogs stopped near one of the benches and started sniffing there. Security officials found a parcel with some gum on the carpet and the Government Analyst's Department was called into examine the substance. Sittings beagn around 9.55 am after a dealy of about 25 minutes but were ended within less than a minute by Speaker W.J.M.Lokubandara. However, the sittings were adjoured till February 14th, after Tamil National Alliance MPs walked to the Well of the House in protest against the abductions in the east.
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Sri Lanka, India discuss bilateral issues on Palk Bay fishing

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 04:11 GMT]
The second meeting of the Sri Lanka-India Joint Working Group on fisheries held Tuesday in Colombo explored ways to improve bilateral co-operation in the fisheries sector and to implement mechanisms to resolve fishing disputes that may arise between fishermen of both countries, diplomatic sources said. The discussions took place in a friendly atmosphere in keeping with the close ties of friendship and co-operation between the two countries, said a press release of the Sri Lanka Foreign Ministry issued Thursday.
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SLA violates detainees rights- HRC

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 04:05 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers in Jaffna has grossly violated the fundamental rights of arrested Tamil youths by sending them to the Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) in Colombo for interrogation without adhering to proper judicial procedures, said Human Rights Commission (HRC) in Jaffna Wednesday. In the past 45 days five Jaffna youths, presumed disappeared after arrests by the SLA, have been sent to the TID unit in Colombo, according to Jaffna Police.
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Pattalipuram tsunami hit families receive livelihood assistance

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 February 2006, 02:42 GMT]
Save the Children, a non-Governmental Organization, has provided financial support to 232 families affected by tsunami in Pattalipuram in Muttur under an income generation project formulated by the Pattalipuram Poonchcholai Peoples' Development Organization (PPPDO), sources in Trincomalee said. The last phase of the project concluded on Monday with the disbursement of about 4.9 million rupees to the beneficiaries.
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Tamil diaspora consortium welcomes US statement, calls for urgent action

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 February 2006, 13:13 GMT]
The International Federation of Tamils (IFT), a Geneva based consortium of Tamil diaspora organisations, in a renewed SOS call to the International Community on Wednesday, has warned that Colombo's denial of "any knowledge" of the abudctions of the humanitarian workers in the east, increased the risk of danger to the lives of the victims. The organisation has welcomed the statement issued by the US Embassy in Sri Lanka.
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UN agencies call for immediate release of kidnapped TRO staff

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 February 2006, 12:48 GMT]
UN Humanitarian Co-ordinator’s Office in Sri Lanka, on Wednesday, has called for the immediate release of the abducted humanitarian aid workers employed by the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO). Deploring the reported abuduction, the UN office in Colombo said that the humanitarian aid workers who devote their professional lives to serving those in need, have the right to respect and protection from harm.
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Paramilitaries release two TRO workers

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 February 2006, 11:54 GMT]
Two of the five pre-school teachers who were abducted by paramilitaries working with the assistance of Sri Lanka Army (SLA) on Sunday 8.00 p.m. were released unharmed and returned to their families in Batticaloa on Wednesday, TRO representatives in Batticaloa said. The fate of the remaining 8 persons abducted by the paramilitaries is not yet known.
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Traders call for hartal in Vavuniya Thursday

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 February 2006, 11:39 GMT]
Vavuniya Traders Union has called for a complete shutdown (hartal) of all businesses, private and Government offices in Vavuniya on Thursday as a protest against the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) for the escalating incidents of arrests, harassement and disappearances in the NorthEast, spokesperson for the Union said.
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NGO Consortium urges immediate action to release kidnapped TRO staff

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 February 2006, 08:08 GMT]
The Consortium of Non Governmental Organisation in Vavuniya, representing 43 NGOs in Vavuniya District, on Tuesday, appealed to the Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse, the representative of the International Committee for Red Cross in Colombo (ICRC), the Head of Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) and the chairperson of the Consortium of Humanitarian Agencies in Colombo, to take immediate action to safeguard the lives and to ensure the safe return of NGO workers who have been kidnapped.
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TNA MPs walk out of parliament in protest of killings, abduction

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 February 2006, 06:07 GMT]
If Colombo continued to allow provocative incidents take place in Sri Lanka Army (SLA) controlled areas of the NorthEast, the peace talks planned between the Government and the LTTE would be in jeopardy, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has warned the Sri Lankan Parliament Wednesday. "This is a calculated move to disturb the talks to be held in Geneva between the Government and the LTTE. We demand that the Government to act urgently in this matter and take appropriate action to save the dialogue," Mavai Senathirajah, TNA MP for Jaffna District told a press conference after walking out of the Sri Lankan Parliament.
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Sexual assault at Kopay SLA camp suspected, says TNA MP

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 February 2006, 02:25 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Jaffna district parliamentarian S Gajendran brought to the attention of Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapakse that residents in Kopay strongly suspect sexual assaults on women are taking place inside a Kopay Sri Lanka Army (SLA) camp, the parliamentarian told the local media, Tuesday. Several residents of the area had complained to the parliamentarian that they had heard a woman screaming for several minutes inside the camp at 5 p.m. Tuesday.
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