Local authorities petition court to halt construction of Navatkuli stupa

The Chavakachcheri Pradeshiya Sabai has petitioned the Chavakachcheri court to halt the construction of a large-scale Buddhist stupa in Navatkuli. While a vihara already exists in the Navatkuli Sinhalese settlement, monks began laying foundations for a new large scale stupa, costing around 1 crore rupees, in the area last month. The vihara administration undertaking the construction were ordered to halt work by Chavakachcheri authorities, having failed to secure the appropriate permission. The order was ignored by the vihara, with monks continuing construction. The Chavakachcheri court judge...

TNPF protest for release of May 17 memorial organisers

The Tamil National People’s Front protested in Jaffna today calling for the release of Tamil Nadu activist Thirumurugan Gandhi, who was arrested by Tamil Nadu police for organising Mullivaikkaal memorialisation efforts.

Sri Lanka government and joint opposition preoccupied with covering up atrocities says Sumanthiran

The Sri Lankan government and joint opposition are preoccupied with covering up atrocities rather than working towards accountability, the TNA MP and spokesperson M. A. Sumanthiran said in Parliament on Tuesday. Referring to Tuesday’s adjournment debate as ‘reaching heights of absurdity and hypocrisy, Mr Sumanthiran said: ““the Government is bending backwards trying to say, “We are not going to allow anybody to be punished.” The Joint Opposition says, “You are trying to punish.” Nobody is talking about the crime. No one is talking about the victims. No one is talking about what is right and...

Sri Lanka's joint opposition accuses government of threatening sovereignty

Sri Lanka’s joint opposition submitted a motion accusing the government of threatening Sri Lanka’s sovereignty by sponsoring the United Nations Human Rights Council resolution on accountability and reconciliation. Submitting the motion in parliament, Dinesh Gunawardena said that parliament was taking action on military officers to appease the international community. See more here.

Muslim shop petrol bombed in Colombo

A Muslim-owned shop in Wikerama, Nugegoda was petrol bombed on Tuesday night. The latest arson attack is one of a series of escalating attacks on Muslim businesses in Sri Lanka. A member of the Muslim Council in Sri Lanka, speaking to Colombo Telegraph said, “While the President is talking about discussions among religious leaders to resolve ethnic conflicts, the Muslim economy is being set on fire on a daily basis. The president must immediately order the arrest of those arsonists or force the IGP to resign if he cannot do his job.” See below for a list of attacks against the Muslim...

‘Sri Lanka will not implement UN High Commissioner’s report’ – Mangala Samaraweera

Sri Lanka’s newly appointed Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera stated that his government would not implement recommendations from a report by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein. Mr Samaraweera, who held the post of foreign minister until a cabinet reshuffle last month, reiterated his government’s refusal of an international investigation into human rights abuses committed during the armed conflict, and said that he had instead lobbied for a domestic mechanism. He went on to state that his government would only implement a resolution which was passed by the UN...

British Tamils Forum urges UK Tamils to exercise voting right in upcoming election

The British Tamils Forum has urged all UK Tamils to vote in the upcoming general election. BTF encouraged British Tamils to support the candidate that: recognises the Tamil right to self-determination on the island of Sri Lanka; recognises the genocide committed against Tamils by then Sri Lankan state; and supports a time-bound plan for the full implementation of UN Human Rights Council resolutions on Sri Lanka. “Let us use our votes wisely to strengthen our voice in the UK parliament,” the forum said. The UK general election which will take place on Thursday was called in April by British...

World Bank predicts 5.1% GDP growth in Sri Lanka, notes concern on public debt

The World Bank predicted a 5.1% growth in Sri Lanka’s GDP in its Global Economic Prospects reforms report. The report, published on Monday, went on to outline concerns about high public debt in South Asia drawing on examples of Sri Lanka and Pakistan. The World Bank analysis noted unexplained rising levels Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Sri Lanka. Earlier this year Bloomberg ranked Sri Lanka among the world’s highest risk countries for investment based in 29 indicators which included political and economic factors. See full report here.

Trincomalee women's groups and children protest schoolgirl assaults

Women’s groups in Trincomalee protested in Muthur, calling for justice for the three young girls sexually assaulted in the district last week.

Pon. Sivakumaran remembered in Jaffna

Ponnuthurai Sivakumaran, the first Tamil to die in the liberation struggle was remembered in his hometown of Urumpirai, Jaffna today, on the 43rd anniversary of his death.