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[Last Updated = Sat, May 30, 2015, 11:43 pm SL Time]
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Sri Lanka's judiciary is no longer politically influenced - President

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena says the country's judicial system is now free and no longer under the political influence from the executive. Addressing an event at the court complex in Hulftsdorp, the President said the judiciary no longer receives telephone calls from the President's House or Temple Trees giving it directions on how to deliver judgments. The President made these remarks at a ceremony held Friday at the Bar Association Headquarters in Hulftsdorp...
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LEGAL - SITUATION

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka on Friday held a wreath-laying ceremony to honor the memory of six fallen soldiers who lost their lives while serving as peacekeepers in the United Nations Peacekeeping forces in conflict-affected corners of the world.

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka police deployed Special Task Force (STF) of police to the restive village of Kotakethana in Kahawatta as the residents area commenced another protest. The police arrested a protester after residents of Kotakethana in the gem mining town staged another protest this morning against a recent court ruling to acquit three suspects charged with the July 2012 murders of a mother and a daughter in the village.

May 30 (Island) Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe PC have categorically denied that people are being held in secret detention camps. The PM recently denied the existence of secret detention camps in the country while asserting those who had been categorised as missing were either dead due to the conflict or living overseas.

May 30 (DM) In an apparent bid to defuse potential future public unrest, in the wake of Thursday's commotion in Kahawatte following the Colombo High Court verdict on the Kotakethana double murder suspects, police said it would file an appeal in the coming days.

May 30 (IPS) UNITED NATIONS, May 29 2015 (IPS) - In many ways, Jayakumari Balendran epitomizes the plight of the Tamil people in Sri Lanka's northern and eastern provinces, both during and after the island nation's 26-year-long civil conflict.

May 30 (DN) Urban Development Water Supply and Drainage Deputy Minister Dunesh Gankanda has urged the government to conduct an immediate investigation into the mysterious murders of several women in Kotakethana, Kahawatte during the last few years.

May 30 (Hindu) With uncertainty looming large after the Sri Lankan government warned that Indian fishermen from Tamil Nadu would not be allowed to fish in their waters "even for a single day", the fishing community here is keeping its fingers crossed.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- The Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of Sri Lanka police has begun a comprehensive investigation into a financial fraud occurred at a commercial bank, according to the Police Media Spokesperson ASP Ruwan Gunasekara.

May 29 (CP) Nagapattinam- The Indian Coast Guard has arrested 5 Sri Lankan fishermen along with their boats on Thursday night for allegedly crossing the International Maritime Boundary Line and poaching in the Indian waters.

May 29 (Hindu) Notwithstanding the four-month-old Sirisena government's repeated assertions of attaching priority to ethnic reconciliation in the country, the regime has been found to be "reluctant" in demilitiarising the Northern and Eastern Provinces, where Tamils live in large numbers, according to a study of Oakland Institute, a U.S.-based policy think tank.

More : LEGAL - SITUATION
* Sri Lankan refugee found guilty of stabbing murder of Adelaide neighbour after victim called him 'lady boy' (29 - ABC)
* Kotakethana villagers run riot over High Court acquittal of murder accused (29 - Island)
* MSD provides security for LG politicians (29 - DM)
* Kotakethana double murder: All accused acquitted (29 - DN)
* Sri Lankan arrested with 1kg gold at airport (29 - TOI)
More : LEGAL - SITUATION

NEWS - HIGHLIGHTS

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said today that the government will not halt investigations into the corruption and malpractices occurred during the former regime, especially in the road construction projects.

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is hopeful of a political comeback, has expressed fears about the possibility of a revival of the defunct Tamil Tiger terrorist organization, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), in the country. (File Photo)

May 30 (CP) Singapore- Defense cooperation between Sri Lanka and China was the main focus when Sri Lanka's State Minister of Defense Ruwan Wijewardene met with the Deputy Chief of General Staff of the People's Liberation Army Admiral Sun Jianguo Friday (29) in Singapore.


FINANCE

May 30 (Now) If you are bored of bed and breakfasting in a normal hotel and happen to be holidaying in Sri Lanka, you need to ensure your itinerary contains a stop at this magical former Tea Factory and here’s six reasons why:

May 30 (Island) DFCC Bank won three awards at the Outstanding Development Project Awards 2015, organized by the Association of Development Financing Institutions in Asia and the Pacific (ADFIAP).

May 30 (DN) The Finance Company has been placed on a vigorous recovery platform and set to breakeven in the second quarter of 2016. The company within one year has achieved a 300 % growth,

May 29 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Ceylon Hotels Corporation (CHC) has rejected a media report which said that the company failed to remit Employee's Provident Fund (EPF) to its employees since 31 December 2013.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan government has taken measures to cut the debt and plans to increase the foreign reserves, Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake said.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's inflation, as measured by the change in the Colombo Consumers' Price Index (CCPI), increased marginally to 0.2 percent on a year-on-year basis in May 2015 from 0.1 percent recorded for the previous month, the Central Bank reported on Friday.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka Thursday signed a loan agreement with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to obtain US$ 107 million of a US$ 800 million assistance package to rehabilitate and improve the island's road network.

** Related Story ::

May 29 (CP) Colombo- The Central Bank of Sri Lanka on behalf of the Sri Lankan government has launched a US$ 650 million 10-year International Sovereign Bond issue at a yield of 6.125 percent per year, the Central Bank said Thursday in a release.

May 29 (Xinhua) COLOMBO- India's flag carrier Air India will start daily flights from capital New Delhi to Sri Lankan capital Colombo from June 15, a local media report said on Friday.

More : FINANCE
* Sri Lankan shares fall to near 3-week low (29 - Reuters)
* NSB records an impressive profit growth during First Quarter 2015 (29 - Island)
* Cable Solutions main production facility at the Flinth Industrial Park (29 - DN)
* Sri Lanka to host international marine life conference in 2016 (29 - LBO)
More : FINANCE

POLITICS - GENERAL

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's nationalist party, Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) yesterday challenged the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) for a debate on the 20th Amendment to the Constitution.

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Families of deceased Sri Lankan migrant workers employed overseas have received compensation and salary dues from the Foreign Affairs Ministry. In a ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday (May 28), Minister Mangala Samaraweera handed over compensation and salary dues totaling Rs. 50 million

May 30 (CP) Colombo- Chief Minister of Northern Province, C.V. Wigneswaran has accused the Sri Lankan government of lacking the will to help Tamils or minorities. Speaking to an international tele-press conference on Thursday night Wigneswaran has said that this "lack of will" had been the "characteristic" of what had been taking place in the country, according to a report in the Indian daily The Hindu.

May 30 (Xinhua) COLOMBO- The Sri Lankan government on Saturday said that it is in talks with China to extend a highway linking the capital and the deep south.

May 30 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday said that Ven. Maduluwawe Sobhitha had been instrumental effecting a regime change in the country at the risk of life and limb in the name of democracy.

May 30 (DM) Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP) Leader Dinesh Gunawardane said yesterday that no agreement had been reached among the constituent parties of the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) on the proposed electoral reforms though it had been claimed otherwise in various quarters.

May 30 (DN) Buddha's visit to Sri Lanka transformed it into a dhammadveepa. The Buddha who visited Mahiyangana Nagadeepa and Kelaniya inculcated the values of love, compassion, devotion and loyalty among the people and created a worthy society, said Most Ven Galagama Sri Aththadassi Mahanayake Thera of the Asgiriya Chapter issuing his Poson message.

May 30 (NIE) COLOMBO:In an bid to mount pressure on the United States, India and other countries to take up the issue of war crimes and human rights violations in Sri Lanka at the September session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva, the California-based Oakland Institute has put out a research study which says that the Maithripala Sirisena government in Sri Lanka lacks the necessary political commitment to bring about ethnic reconciliation.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan government has taken measures to ensure that voters with disabilities can access the polling places to cast their vote at elections, Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya said.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- Observing that the construction industry is a significant component in the country's national growth, Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today promised to sort out the problems and strengthen the construction sector in order to provide the people a quality service.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- One Cabinet Minister, three State Ministers and one Deputy Minister were sworn in before President Maithripala Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat today (29). Former Minister of Investment Promotion, United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) MP Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena was sworn in as the Cabinet Minister of Parliamentary Affairs.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- The Government of Japan has agreed to provide a Rs. 49 billion loan under the Japan International Cooperation Institution (JICA) to Sri Lanka to develop the infrastructure facilities of the country's main international airport at Katunayake.

May 29 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan government plans to establish an investigation unit in the field of highways to probe whether there was any corruption that would cause losses to the government.

** Related Story ::Fraud and corruption in highway projects will be revealed, says Sri Lankan minister

More : POLITICS - GENERAL
* Mahinda will loose privileges if he contests General Election - Rajitha (29 - Island)
* MS rules out nomination for MR (29 - DM)
* CB Governor speaks up 'I am ready to go before FCID' (29 - DN)
More : POLITICS - GENERAL

SPORTS

May 30 (ESPNCI) The third and final ODI between Zimbabwe and Pakistan in Lahore will go ahead as scheduled after the visiting team had a meeting with PCB and security officials following what federal information minister Pervaiz Rashid said was a suicide attack near Gaddafi Stadium during the second match. Zimbabwe have, however, cancelled their plans to go shopping in the city, even as the security cover around the team has been beefed up.

More : SPORTS

May 30 (SMH) Former Australian cricket captain Steve Waugh said the NSW hierarchy would be well advised to talk to the outgoing Trevor Bayliss about who he believed is the best person to replace him as the state team's head coach. Bayliss, who has previously coached Sri Lanka, was appointed as coach of England during the week. While the 52-year-old doesn't start his role until the end of next month, he has already made his presence felt by demanding a youthful England squad for the one day and T20 matches against New Zealand.

May 29 (ESPNCI) Several club cricket administrators have voiced opposition to the changes to domestic structure proposed by Sri Lanka Cricket. The Sidath Wettimuny-led interim committee has sought to revive provincial tournaments that would serve as Sri Lanka's top domestic competition, but some within the cricket establishment have said provincial tournaments are a drain on resources. "To my mind, Sri Lanka is way too small to have a provincial set-up," Tamil Union cricket chairman Suresh Murugaser said.

May 29 (PO) Mumbai—Two officials of the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) board will travel to Pakistan and watch their final ODI against Zimbabwe on Sunday. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has invited officials from the ICC and several cricket boards including Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh to oversee the security arrangements they have made for the visiting Zimbabwe team.


WORLD

May 29 (BBC) A volcano has erupted on an island in Japan, spewing black clouds of ash up to 9km (5.6 miles) into the sky and forcing the evacuation of inhabitants. One person was reported to have suffered minor facial burns from falling debris as Mount Shindake erupted on Friday morning. Most of the 137 residents of Kuchinoerabu island were evacuated by boat.

More : WORLD

May 29 (BBC) Everest Sherpas say they have seen potentially dangerous changes in their landscape after Nepal's 7.8-magnitude earthquake and aftershocks. They say they are living in fear of flooding and tumbling rock and ice because they have witnessed cracks in the ground and in glaciers.

May 29 (BBC) India's economy grew 7.5% in the three months ending in March, higher than the previous quarter and above expectations. It means the country has outpaced China's economic expansion for two quarters out of the last three. Forecasts were for growth of about 7.3% for the period compared with a year earlier.

May 29 (BBC) Asian countries have agreed to work together to try to stem the region's migrant crisis, as Myanmar brought to shore another boat full of migrants. Countries agreed to intensify search-and-rescue operations as well as address root causes of migration at a regional conference in Bangkok.


About Sri Lanka ::-
Introduction to Sri Lanka ::-

Sri Lanka is a beautiful island paradise in the Indian Ocean with white sandy beaches lush greenery, exciting adventures, amazing wildlife, cascading waterfalls and a rich heritage. The island of Sri Lanka is roughly pear-shaped. The total area of Sri Lanka is 65,610 sq km. Sri Lanka’s coastline is about 1,340 km (about 833 mi) around.

The people in Sri Lanka are warm and friendly. Sri Lankans are known for hospitality in all over the world. People in Sri Lanka ethnically fall into four main categories. The population of Sri Lanka is about 20 million. Sri Lanka has a tropical climate. Sri Lanka has a democratic government. Sri Lanka is mainly an agricultural country. Colombo is the commercial capital of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka gained independence in 1948. Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon.

In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Sri Lanka became a plantation economy, famous for its production and export of cinnamon, rubber and Ceylon tea, which remains a trademark national export. By 1996 plantation crops made up only 20% of export, and further declined to 16.8% in 2005 (compared with 93% in 1970), while textiles and garments have reached 63%. The GDP grew at an average annual rate of 5.5% during the early 1990s, until a drought and a deteriorating security situation lowered growth to 3.8% in 1996. The economy rebounded in 1997-2000, with average growth of 5.3%.

Sri Lanka, with an income per head of $1,350, still lags behind some of its neighbors including Maldives and Mauritius but is ahead of its giant neighbor India. Its economy grew by an average of 5% during the 1990s during the 'War for Peace' era. According to the Sri Lankan central bank statistics, the economy was estimated to have grown by 7% last year, although inflation had reached 20%.

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