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[Last Updated = Sun, Feb 7, 2016, 12:49 am SL Time]
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India fully supports Sri Lankan government policies - Minister Swaraj

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj says the government of India is fully satisfied with the program of the new government of Sri Lanka and will extend the fullest cooperation to the President Maithripala Sirisena's program for reconciliation and development. Meeting with President Sirisena this morning at the President's House, Minister Swaraj said India admires the speech recently delivered by President Maithripala Sirisena in the Parliament, stating that he would take the country towards development while bringing about the peace and reconciliation among every community.
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LEGAL - SITUATION

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- The National Freedom Front (NFF), Sri Lanka's opposition political party led by MP Wimal Weerawansa, organized a protest in the capital Colombo on Saturday against the visit of the United Nations human rights chief.

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Police Chief N.K. Illangakoon today defended his force saying that a majority of police officers dutifully carry out their responsibilities, even sacrificing their lives and he is bound to protect those police officers.

Feb 06 (BBC) The UN's top human rights official has arrived in Sri Lanka amid concerns that the country's president is backtracking on promises to investigate war crimes. Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, will spend four days in the country.

Feb 06 (Nation) The Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID)’s current investigation into former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s son Yoshitha Rajapaksa’s suspected involvement in money laundering will have no immediate bearing on his career in the Navy as a Lieutenant.

Feb 06 (CT) Additional Colombo Magistrate, Nishantha Peiris, on Wednesday issued summons to the wife of former DIG Vaas Gunawardene, Shyamali Priyadarshani Perera,who is an accused in a Case pertaining to possession of harmful weapons, to be present in Court on 17 February.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- The Colombo Chief Magistrate has called for a medical report on Cecile Kotelawala, who was arrested yesterday when she returned to the country after absconding for eight years, as to why she was admitted to a private hospital after her arrest.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan government has received approval from the Cabinet of Ministers to implement a five-year plan to monitor and combat human trafficking. Sri Lanka has ratified the UN protocol to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking in persons, especially women and children (Palermo Protocol) in 2015.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- The five member committee appointed on the orders of Minister of Health, Dr. Rajitha Senaratne to probe the alleged kidney racket involving Sri Lankan doctors, has handed over their report to the Minister Friday.

Feb 05 (CP) Pudukkottai- Indian Fishermen from Tamil Nadu have alleged that their Sri Lankan counterparts have attacked their boat when they were fishing near the Delft island off Jaffna peninsula. A PTI report said a fisherman from a coastal hamlet in the Pudukkottai district suffered an eye injury when Sri Lankan Tamil fishermen in the North allegedly pelted stones at his mechanized boat at Nedunatheevu (Delft) for violating the International Maritime Boundary Line.

More : LEGAL - SITUATION
* Rehabilitated LTTE Cadres Sing National Anthem In Sinhalese (5 - AM)
More : LEGAL - SITUATION

NEWS - HIGHLIGHTS

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- During the 9th Session of the India-Sri Lanka Joint Commission held Friday in Colombo, the two sides discussed the preparations to begin negotiations on the Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement that is expected to be signed by mid-2016.

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj called on Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today at the President's House in Colombo. Minister Swaraj, who arrived in Sri Lanka on Friday for a two-day visit, briefed President Sirisena on the outcomes of the 9th India-Sri Lanka Joint Commission Meeting.

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- Commander of Sri Lanka Navy Vice Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne is representing Sri Lanka at the International Fleet Review (IFR) 2016 being held in India from 4th to 8th February 2016.

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein arrived in Sri Lanka this morning on a four-day official visit at the invitation of the Sri Lankan government.

Feb 05 (CP) Washington,DC- The United States has reaffirmed its commitment to help Sri Lanka to achieve worthy goals set out by the President, Prime Minister, and Opposition Leader to end the "ill-will, hatred, and strife", a top ranking U.S. official said.


FINANCE - TRAVEL

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- Flagship of Holland America Line, MS Rotterdam is scheduled to call port at Hambanthota on Sunday, Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) said. The largest passenger cruise liner carrying 1,176 persons and a crew of 600 on board, and arriving from Cochin Port in India will dock at the Hambantota Port on Sunday at 8:00 a.m. The ship will depart at 10:00 p.m. Sunday to Yangon, Myanmar.

Feb 06 (AFP) COLOMBO- Sri Lanka has made a formal request for an IMF bailout package to aid its struggling economy after a sharp slowdown in growth and with its budget deficit widening, officials said Saturday.

FEB 6 (Hindu BL) BHUBANESWAR- India is keen to establish refinery and bunkering operations in Sri Lanka, Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said on Saturday and hoped the country will once again be in a position to export petroleum products to Bangladesh with the commissioning of Paradip refinery.

Feb 06 (DM) Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) recently signed agreements with six major ICT equipment suppliers to enhance the experience of its valued customers. The company partnered with Softlogic Retail (Pvt) Ltd., SALA Enterprises, Esquire Telecom (Pvt) Ltd., Sense Foreign Trade, Siyol International Pvt Ltd. and Solutioncity (Pvt) Ltd. for the period 2016/2017.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- An International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff mission, concluding a five-day visit to Sri Lanka today, has advised the Sri Lankan government to urgently make a stronger effort to narrow the fiscal deficit and put the public finances on a sustainable path although recent economic performance has been positive in a number of respects.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- The Footwear and Leather Fair 2016, the eighth in its successful series, opened this morning at the BMICH in Colombo. It will end on Sunday 7th. It has been attracting more and more global exhibitors since its start in 2007.

Feb 05 (ECONOMYNEXT) Global production sharing networks in East Asia are expanding with the World Trade Organization's Information Technology Agreement which has made it easy to ship components and products across borders, economists said.

More : FINANCE - TRAVEL
* Indo-Ceylon Economic Dialogue held at B2B meet in Kochi (5 - BL)
* Sri Lankan shares steady in dull trade (5 - Reuters)
* Megapolis plan aims for flexible working hours (5 - LBO)
* EESoc holds panel discussion on power quality and reliability (5 - DM)
* Sri Lanka Central Bank liberalizes foreign currency accounts (5 - CP)
More : FINANCE - TRAVEL

POLITICS - GENERAL

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, who arrived in Sri Lanka this morning on a four-day official visit at the invitation of the Sri Lankan government said he will listen to everyone.

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- The Government of South Korea is willing to extend fully-pledged support to promote the Fisheries Industry in Sri Lanka, the State Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Dilip Wedaarachchi said. The State Minister at a media briefing Friday has disclosed that two Korean companies have agreed to set up fishing harbors and maintain them for five years.

Feb 06 (BBC) Much of the Hindu epic, the Ramayana, is set in Sri Lanka. But the island has seen something of a modern epic in the past year or so, with the crashing fall from grace of the family which once appeared to run most aspects of life there.

Feb 06 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan government plans to grant dual citizenship to nearly 10,000 expatriates, Minister of Internal Affairs S.B. Nawinna said. Minister Nawinna made this disclosure at a ceremony held for the presentation of dual citizenship to 1,000 Sri Lankans expatriates at the BMICH in Colombo.

Feb 06 (Xinhua) COLOMBO- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has sent his greeting to the Chinese government and its people for the Chinese New Year which falls on Feb. 8.

Feb 06 (DM) Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said the UNP and the SLFP were on the same wave length with regard to the Geneva resolution on Sri Lanka. He said the Government was confident that Sri Lanka could convince UNHR High Commissioner Zeid Ra-ad Al Hussein that Sri Lanka was on the right track

Feb 05 (DH) India and Sri Lanka today agreed to find an "innovative and lasting solution" to the fishermen issue, a major irritant in the bilateral ties, as the foreign ministers of the two countries reviewed the progress made in various sectors like defence, aviation and trade.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- India today signed agreements to build a hospital in Eastern Sri Lanka and renovate schools in the Northern Province, India's Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Vikas Swarup said in a series of Twitter messages.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today said that he would implement a special program to broaden the opportunities in the market for the innovations by strengthening the inventors.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- Visiting External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj called on Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe at the Temple Trees on Friday, the first day of her two-day visit to the island.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- The Committee on Public Representations on the Constitution (CPRC) appointed by Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe to seek public opinion on the proposed constitutional reforms will seek input from people in Kalutara and Vavuniya districts today and tomorrow respectively. The sittings will take place at the district secretariats of the two districts.

Feb 05 (CP) Colombo- India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has left for Colombo today commencing her two-day visit to Sri Lanka, local news agency Asian News International (ANI) reported. Minister Swaraj will be visiting Sri Lanka from February 5-6 to participate in the 9th session of the India-Sri Lanka Joint Commission, External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Vikas Swarup said at the media briefing Thursday.

Feb 05 (PTI) Chennai- DMK and MDMK today expressed concern over Sri Lankan President Maithiripala Sirisena's reported statement that his country's new constitution will not have the concept of 'Federation,' saying it will affect the ethnic Tamils.

Feb 05 (BNA) His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa yesterday sent a cable of congratulations and good wishes to Sri Lanka's President Maithripala Sirisena on his country's Independence day.

More : POLITICS - GENERAL
* Neville F'do Hospital offered to Govt. by chairman (5 - DM)
More : POLITICS - GENERAL

SPORTS

Feb 06 (EXPNCI) Wicketkeeper-batsman Niroshan Dickwella has been added to Sri Lanka's squad as cover for Tillakaratne Dilshan, who was ruled out of the first T20 against India with a hand injury. Dilshan did not travel with the team to India on Saturday. He will instead spend a few days recovering from injury at home, before joining the side mid-series. He is expected to be available for the second match, in Ranchi, on January 12.

More : SPORTS

Feb 06 (CP) New Delhi- Sri Lanka bagged four gold medals on the first day of the competition at the 12th South Asian Games that is simultaneously underway in Guwahati and Shillong. Sri Lanka's Matthew Abeysinghe continuing his dominance in Swimming bagged the first gold medal in the Men's 200m Freestyle Swimming and the second gold in the 100m Butterfly Swimming.Sri Lanka won its third gold medal in the 100m men's freestyle relay.

Feb 06 (Goal) The Indian colts consist of squad members from the SAFF championship win this year and they will look to erase a disappointing 2010 South Asian games for India.... The Indian U23 team will take on Sri Lanka in the opening football tie of the 12th South Asian Games (SAG), hosted in Guwahati, Assam, on Saturday, 6th February, 2016. India have been paired into group A, alongside Sri Lanka and the Maldives, in a three team group.

Feb 05 (ICC) New Zealand and South Africa put aside the disappointment of not qualifying for the Super League of the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup by making winning starts in the Plate Championship which decides the 9-16 positions. New Zealand bounced back from its defeats to India and Nepal in Group D to brush aside Scotland by seven wickets in Cox's Bazar on Thursday. South Africa, the defending champion who failed to finish among the top two in Group A, breezed past Ireland by eight wickets in another quarter-final in Cox's Bazar.


WORLD

Feb 06 (Dawn) UNITED NATIONS: Decrying the rise of Islamophobia worldwide, Pakistan called on Thursday for action to combat the forces of xenophobia and warned that if timely steps were not taken to check this disturbing trend, it could threaten regional and global peace and security. Speaking at an event organised at the UN by Pakistan Mission and the OIC on “Countering Xenophobia through Interfaith Cooperation”,

More : WORLD

Feb 06 (BBC) An earthquake has toppled buildings in the south Taiwanese city of Tainan, killing at least seven people. Rescue teams have been trying to reach people trapped in rubble since the magnitude 6.4 quake struck just before 04:00 (20:00 GMT Friday).A baby was among at least four people killed when a high-rise block collapsed.

Feb 05 (BBC) Thailand has launched a campaign ahead of Valentine's Day urging teenagers not to be ashamed to carry condoms. The tone appears to have shifted from previous campaigns, where teenagers were encouraged to visit temples and go home after dates instead of having sex.

Feb 05 (News.com) BRITISH police have insisted WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will be arrested if he steps outside the Ecuadorian embassy, where he has been holed up for more than three years. A United Nations panel stated that Mr Assange has been “arbitrarily detained” in the embassy, which he entered in 2012 to avoid being extradited to Sweden over sexual assault allegations.


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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