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[Last Updated = Sun, Jan 25, 2015, 11:19 am SL Time]
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Sri Lanka terminates military leadership training in education sector

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- The new government of Sri Lanka has decided to terminate a mandatory military style leadership training program initiated by the previous government for school principals and university entrants. Sri Lanka's new Education Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said the government is ending the program that was compulsory for the students entering the country's universities under the former president Mahinda Rajapaksa's administration. Similarly the government will call-off the leadership training for the school principals and awarding brevet military titles to them.
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SECURITY - SITUATION

Jan 25 (CP) Colombo- The Court of Appeal in Sri Lanka Tuesday (27) will take up a Writ Application filed by the Marxist party, Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) seeking an order to arrest and prosecute former LTTE leader Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP.

** Related Story ::Sri Lanka Marxist party files petition in court seeking former LTTE leader's arrest

Jan 25 (CP) Colombo- United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Prince Zeid Ra'ad Zeid Al-Hussein has referred to the investigation on Sri Lanka in the High Commissioner's annual report.

Jan 25 (Island) Sinhala Buddhist extremism had led to the defeat of Mahinda Rajapaksa at the last Presidential Election, one of his former Ministers said yesterday.

Jan 25 (ST) Battling a “really powerful” drug ring, the newly-appointed Minister of Public Order, Disaster Management and Christian Affairs, John Amaratunga said a special taskforce will be appointed to tackle the escalating flow of drugs into the country.

Jan 25 (SO) Secretary to the Ministry B.M.U.D. Basnayake said that without any solid study of the true situation of the current position in the defence sector, the Government will not take drastic changes.

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- A police officer, who tendered his resignation citing constant political pressure from the previous government, has been reinstated in his duties as the officer-in-charge (OIC).

** Related Story :: Police OIC in Sri Lanka resigns due to political pressure

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- The Chairman of the Presidential Commission Investigating Cases of Missing Persons in Sri Lanka, Maxwell Paranagama has sought a time with the new President Maithripala Sirisena to discuss the future proceedings of the Commission.

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Sri Lanka police has questioned the country's Chief Justice Mohan Peiris over an alleged coup attempt hatched by the former president Mahinda Rajapaksa and his loyalists on the night of the presidential election on January 8.

More : SECURITY - SITUATION
* CID probes Shashi’s two IDs and passports (24 - Island)
* Ex-deputy minister, two others re-remanded (24 - DN)
More : SECURITY - SITUATION

NEWS - HIGHLIGHTS

Jan 25 (CP) Colombo- Foreign Affairs Minister of Sri Lanka Mangala Samaraweera is scheduled to leave for Brussels Monday to negotiate the European Commission's ban on fish exports from Sri Lanka.

** Related Story ::Sri Lanka faces EU fish export ban

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- A top European trade delegation has arrived in Sri Lanka to formulate a trade-related capacity building project, which will enhance the overall performance of the export sector of Sri Lanka.

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said that a final decision will be taken within the next two weeks on whether to continue the Colombo Port City Project launched by the previous government in partnership with China.

** Related Story ::Sri Lanka PM says previous regime played China against India

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- The government of Sri Lanka is currently in the process of drafting legislation to amend a key piece of legislation, Article 14 of the Constitution. Secretary to the Ministry of Mass Media & Information Karunaratne Paranavithana said that the Article 14 of the Constitution will be amended to include the right to information as a basic human right.


FINANCE

Jan 25 (Island)With  around 50 percent of the  companies participating in the ongoing Jaffna International Trade Fair(JITF), being Indian affiliated, India says that  more of its industrialists and entrepreneurs  would participate  at next  years edition of the exhibition.

Jan 25 (ST) Access Engineering (AEL), with major exposure in highways and building construction, has decided to hold an investor forum to explain a back-up plan after its share price crashed owing to uncertainty over public infrastructure projects that it has been involved in, company officials said.

Jan 25 (SO) Sri Lanka’s apparel industry has shown continuous growth over the years, Joint Apparel Association Forum, General Secretary Tuly Cooray told Sunday Observer Business.

Jan 24, Colombo: An apparel industry expert and a leading businessman, Ajith Dias has been appointed to head Sri Lanka's national carrier SriLankan Airlines, sources said. Ajith Dias was the Chairman of the Joint Apparel Associations Forum (JAAF) which is the apex body of all Textile and Apparel Associations before being appointed to head the national carrier.

More : FINANCE
* MTD Walkers denies water pollution allegation (24 - Island)
* Leading gem firms showcase at Japan's IJT Fair (24 - DN)
More : FINANCE

POLITICS - GENERAL

Jan 25 (CP) Colombo- State media institutions in Sri Lanka and a private television channel believed to have been operated by members of the former First Family are currently being probed for alleged irregularities in the past few years.

Jan 25 (CP) Colombo- An ally of Sri Lanka's National Unity government , the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) has called on the authorities to reveal the name of the Colombo District parliamentarian who is said to have maintained links with alleged drug king pin, Samantha Kumara alias Wele Sudha.

Jan 25 (Island) The Joint Trade Alliance of the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) yesterday decided to take up the injustice faced by most employees to the Bribery and Corruption and the Special Committee Against Corruption headed Janatha Vimuthi Peramuna (JVP) leader, Anura Kumara Dissanayake.

Jan 25 (ST) Chief Justice 44 Mohan Peiris is refusing to relinquish office and now demanding a plum diplomatic posting in return for vacating his post despite a demand by the country’s lawyers that he step down.

Jan 25 (SO) Justice and Labour Relations Minister Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, PC said that there is no witchhunt against anybody and the Government will not act with vengeance. “We are a democratic Government. Our pledge to the people was that we wouldn’t follow the policy of the previous regime.

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's new Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe, in a message condoling death of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah, recalled the significant role played by the late King to enhance bilateral relations between the two countries for the "mutual benefit of our peoples."

Jan 24, Colombo: Former Governor of Sri Lanka Central Bank Ajith Nivard Cabraal said he is "deeply disappointed" at the wide publicity that has been generated by the allegations contained in the complaints to the bribery commission.

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- Media Minister of Sri Lanka Gayantha Karunathilaka says that there will not be any restrictions on state sector officials from speaking to the media. Speaking to a group of representatives from several media organizations, Karunathilaka said the Media Ministry upholds the right to freedom of expression.

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- The Elections Department of Sri Lanka is yet to receive official communication of the appointment of President Maithripala Sirisena as the leader of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP).

Jan 24 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Marxist party, the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) has decided to contest on its own at the next general election under its bell symbol. JVP politburo member, K.D. Lalkantha said the party has decided to contest on its own at the elections.

Jan 24 (NIE) The new Maithripala Sirisena government in Sri Lanka is to reduce China’s involvement in the island nation’s economy to cut corruption which had attained gargantuan proportions in the Mahinda Rajapaksa era, the Minister of Finance, Ravi Karunanayake has said.

More : POLITICS - GENERAL
* Bus fare reduction likely next week (24 - DM)
* Polls Chief denies pressure on him to suspend results ... ready for general election (24 - Island)
* Electoral system should be changed - Malwatte Prelate (24 - DN)
More : POLITICS - GENERAL

SPORTS

New Zealand 315/8 (50.0 ov) Sri Lanka 195 (40.3 ov)

Jan 25 (ESPNCI) Brendon McCullum chose to bat first on a Dunedin track expected to be full of runs, as both teams made two changes to the sides that played on Friday. New Zealand need just one win from the remaining two matches to seal the series.

More : SPORTS

Jan 24 (CB) Sri Lanka will hope to be third time lucky after disappointments in the 2007 and 2011 ICC Cricket World Cups, where they finished runners-up to Australia and India respectively. Going into the 2015 edition, they have one of the more balanced teams and the most experienced one as well. Mahela Jayawardne, Kumar Sangakkara, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Lasith Malinga have been part of the two heartbreaks before and this could be their year to lift the trophy which they first won way back in 1996.

Jan 24 (ESPNCI) If it is true that you learn more in defeat than in victory, Sri Lanka must have now earned a doctorate in how not to win matches, in their time in New Zealand. The fielders have majored in shelling important catches. The bowlers have refined the science of making top-order breakthroughs, then allowing the lower-middle order to blow them away.

Jan 24 (IBN) In modern day cricket, ODIs have become a batsman's game. With scores over 300 being chased down easily and batsmen breaking records for fastest 50s and 100s and scoring double-centuries in ODIs, it looks like this World Cup may also follow the trend, though bowlers will surely disagree with that.


WORLD

Jan 25 (Telegraph) Begum Khaleda Zia's self-exiled younger son Arafat Rahman Koko died today after a cardiac arrest, further convulsing Bangladesh where a stand-off between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the Zia-led Opposition has led to the death of over 30 people. Koko, 45, died in Malaysia, where he was living for the past several years, said the former Prime Minister's media secretary, Maruf Kamal Sohel.

More : WORLD

Jan 25 (BBC) US President Barack Obama has arrived in India for a three-day visit, where he will be protected by an unprecedented security operation. Thousands of security personnel have been deployed in Delhi along with some 15,000 security cameras, roadblocks and protective sandbag walls

Jan 24 (BBC) Salvage teams have begun an operation to raise the fuselage of AirAsia flight QZ8501, which crashed into the Java Sea last month killing all 162 on board. However, the initial attempt was unsuccessful as ropes around the fuselage snapped.

Jan 24 (Xinhua) KATHMANDU- Nepal's Prime Minister Sushil Koirala on Friday expressed the regrets for failing to promulgate a new constitution within the deadline. A day after the scheduled date, Koirala accused the opposition parties for the failure, saying the drafting was hampered by the " undemocratic culture" of some parties. Political parties have earlier promised to deliver the new constitution before January 22.


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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