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[Last Updated = Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 12:30 am SL Time]
Sri Lanka must confront and defeat demons of past - UN Rights Chief

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka must seize the great opportunity it currently has to provide all its people with truth, justice, security and prosperity and the United Nations will fully support its efforts, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein said today. Issuing a media statement on Tuesday in Colombo at the conclusion of his four-day visit to Sri Lanka, High Commissioner AL Hussein said Sri Lanka must confront and defeat demons of past by creating institutions that work, and ensuring accountability.
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Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- A group of artistes along with several representatives of some civil organizations visited the Welikada Prison to inquire into the wellbeing of former president's second son, Yoshitha Rajapaksa who is in remand prison.

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- A Sri Lankan court has remanded the General Secretary of the Bodu Bala Sena Organization, Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thera again after releasing him earlier on bail. Homagama Magistrate's Court ordered to remand Gnanasara Thera until tomorrow on charges of threatening Journalist Prageeth Ekneligoda's wife Sandhya Ekneligoda.

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- Indian fishermen have accused that the Sri Lankan Navy had damaged their fishing nets and chased them back till Indian territorial waters while they were fishing near the Katchatheevu islet today. A fishermen association official in Rameswaram has told PTI that the nets of 30 fishermen boats were damaged allegedly by Sri Lankan naval personnel near Katchatheevu islet.

Feb 09 (Reuters) The United Nations will not force Sri Lanka to accept a role for international judges in investigating possible war crimes during the 26-year Tamil insurgency but any process must be impartial and independent, the U.N. human rights chief said on Tuesday.

Feb 09 (AP) U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Raad al-Hussein says families are distressed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s statement that most of those reported missing are probably dead.

Feb 09 (IRIN) YANGON- Sri Lanka's president is unlikely to cave in any time soon to pressure for international participation in a war crimes tribunal, as the United Nations rights chief urged today.

Feb 09 (DM) Three individuals died after they were hit by trains in three separate incidents in Peliyagoda, Wellawatta and Ambanpola yesterday, Police said. A 64 year-old cyclist was hit by a train, travelling from Colombo to Kankasanthurei, when he crossed a closed railway crossing near the Kelani fly over.

Feb 09 (Island) A high ranking police officer yesterday said the pyramid scam that had financially destroyed many was raising its ugly head again and the police were not allowed a free hand to bust the racket carried out by some influential persons with political connections.

Feb 09 (DN) Prison Reforms, Reconstruction, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs Minister D.M. Swaminathan instructed the Prisons Commissioner General to submit a report whether Yoshitha Rajapaksa had a mobile phone in his possession.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- The Criminal Investigations Department of police on Monday informed the court that the private hospital where Cecil Kotelawala is receiving treatment had no objections to admitting her to the Colombo National Hospital for further treatment.

** Related Story ::Court orders medical report on Cecile Kotelawala

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has recommended the names of three persons to the Constitutional Council for the post of Attorney General. JVP Parliamentarian and a member of the Constitutional Council Vijitha Herath told media that the Council has extensively held discussions on President's recommendations and a final decision will be reached during the council meeting on Wednesday.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lanka Navy Monday said it has arrested five local fishermen for allegedly engaged in illegal fishing practices. Naval personnel attached to SLNS Vijaya in Kalpitiya arrested five local fishermen with 2 Fiber Glass Dinghies (FGDs) engaged in illegal fishing in the seas between Udappuwa and Manpuri sea areas on 06th February 2016.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, who is in Sri Lanka on a four-day visit, met with Sri Lanka's top defense officials today.

Feb 08 (CP) Kandy- An officer of Sri Lanka Army and a civilian were killed in the pre-dawn hours of Sunday at Getambe in Peradeniya when their car collided with a tractor trailer, police said. Major Buwaneka Jayasundera (41) and R. S. S. Gunasekara (41) of Yatiwawala Katugastota had succumbed to their injuries sustained in the accident while two others who were injured are receiving treatment at the Peradeniya Teaching Hospital.

* Businessman arrested with €30,000 in rectum (8 - DM)
* Pro-FCID protest prevented from reaching Devale (8 - Island)
* Lorry driver flees after abandoning body (8 - DN)


Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake has appealed to the public to keep the government informed of any attempts to exert undue political influence at a time the government is attempting to create an ethical society.

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, who is on a four-day official visit to Sri Lanka at the invitation of the government, called on the Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today.

Feb 09 (CP) Islamabad- Sri Lanka's College of Information Management and Sciences and Sri Lanka-Pakistan Friendship, Trade and Investment Association have signed MoU with Preston University for collaboration in a variety of fields. The MoU was signed on behalf of their respective organizations at the Pakistan High Commission in Colombo, Sri Lanka


Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- The Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC won another accolade on the international stage recently when its 2014 Annual Report was adjudged 'Asia's Best Integrated Report' at the Asia Sustainability Reporting Awards in Singapore.

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- A eight-member business delegation of leading Finnish enterprises and banks has visited Sri Lanka's investment promotion agency, Board of Investment (BOI), to study the island nation's Business climate and examine the potential for investment by Finnish enterprises in the country.

Feb 09 (ECONOMYNEXT) Total S.A., of France, one of six 'super major' oil and gas firms, will sign an agreement next week with the Sri Lankan Government to explore for offshore oil and gas, an official said.

Feb 09 (Xinhua) COLOMBO- China has been a key partner and friend of Sri Lanka since ancient times and with bilateral ties never better and with a large Chinese community now living in Sri Lanka, Sri Lankans have embraced Chinese culture including the cuisine.

Feb 09 (Reuters) Sri Lankan shares fell for the second straight session on Tuesday, hitting a more than one-week low in thin trade, as global stock markets came under pressure and on investor concern over rising domestic interest rates, analysts said.

Feb 09 (DM) Sri Lanka’s Finance Ministry will be reviving two advisory committees to look into customs tariffs and tax-related issues, top officials said. “We will set up two committees: the Tax Advisory Committee and the Customs Advisory Committee, and we will try to resolve the tariff and tax-related issues,”

Feb 09 (Island) Ease of Doing Business Forum held in Colombo last week undoubtedly reflected the fact that government officials working to facilitate private sector business are between the devil and the deep blue sea.

Feb 09 (DN) Lanka Hydraulic Institute Ltd (LHI), has completed another coastal engineering project in Algeria. A 2.5km long coastal segment in Mostaganem, in west Algeria has been studied to develop sufficient beach fronts

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- Captain of the visiting cruise liner MS Rotterdam Marco Carsjens says that the Hambantota port in southern Sri Lanka is a springboard for the growth of the island's tourism industry. Captain Carsjens says the Hambantota harbor has won the admiration of the tourists as a green harbor.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's tourist arrivals rose 24.3 percent in January this year compared to the same period last year, the data released today by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) showed. The month recorded 194,280 tourists arriving in the country compared to the 156,246 arrived in January 2015.

* Sri Lankan shares end weaker in dull trade (8 - Reuters)
* Sri Lanka chamber of commerce presents seminar on promoting sustainable biomass energy production (8 - CP)
* ‘SL should opt for MFTAs to enter global value chain’ (8 - Island)
* China's J. J. Construction building five star hotel in Panadura (8 - DN)
* Labour cost not critical to attract multinationals: economist (8 - LBO)
* Sri Lanka should enable global production sharing, not 'high value added' exports: economist (8 - EN)


Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, as the leader of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), will take stern legal action against those who breach the party discipline, a senior party member said.

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- A group of Sri Lankan parliamentarians, who called themselves a 'joint opposition' staged a protest in the parliament today demanding that they be recognized as independent MPs in Parliament. The group loyal to former president Mahinda Rajapaksa disrupted the parliamentary proceedings after the Speaker Karu Jayasuriya refused their request to identify the joint opposition as an independent group in Parliament.

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- Former commander of Sri Lanka Army and leader of Democratic Party, field Marshal Sarath Fonseka took oaths as a member of Sri Lanka's eighth parliament today. He was sworn in parliament before Speaker Karu Jayasuriya.

Feb 09 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's 'joint opposition' will form a new political party under the leadership of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, according to the local media reports. Reportedly a meeting of a large number of parliamentarians loyal to the former president has taken place at his residence in Mirihana last night to discuss the final details of the new party.

Feb 09 (Daily Mail) At just six-weeks-old, Roshani Priddis was adopted by Australian couple Bruce and Narelle Priddis after her Sri Lankan mother and father were unable to care for her due to extreme poverty.

Feb 09 (Independent) For victims of alleged war crimes, it was a hopeful moment when the United Nations' human rights chief, Jordanian Prince Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, visited the northern districts of Sri Lanka at the weekend.

Feb 09 (DM) “If Nishantha Malli was in the company of good guys, he (Nishantha) would not have to face to such a scenario. The law should be equal to everyone. No interferences from me. However, I will be with my Malli,” Ports and Shipping Minister Arjuna Ranatunga yesterday said referring to the arrest of his younger brother Nishantha Ranatunga over the CSN case.

Feb 09 (Island) SLFP/UPFA dissidents who met at former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s residence in Mirihana last night decided to form a new political party. A large number of MPs belonging to the joint opposition and former parliamentarians had taken part in the successful talks, according to sources.

Feb 09 (DN) The singing of the National Anthem in Tamil at the Independence Day celebrations was a step in the right direction to foster national reconciliation, Galle district UPFA Parliamentarian Ramesh Pathirana said.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Minister Duminda Dissanayake has stressed that the party will take stern disciplinary action against members who contravene the Party Constitution.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- The Central Environment Authority of Sri Lanka has informed the Appeals Court that the pH value of water samples secured from wells within the environs of the Rathupaswala Factory are not within the stipulated limits.

** Related Story ::Water samples in the vicinity of Sri Lanka's glove manufacturer tested acidic

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- Member of Western Province Council, Sumith Lal Mendis, has been appointed as the Minister of Health, Indigenous Medicine, Social Welfare, Probationary, Child Protection and Women Affairs of the Western Province.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's 'joint opposition', the group of parliamentarians loyal to the former president Mahinda Rajapaksa has threatened to disrupt parliamentary proceedings if the Speaker Karu Jayasuriya does not recognize the group as a separate entity.

Feb 08 (CP) Colombo- A group of 43 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees, who were living in refugee camps in Tamil Nadu state of India, will arrive in the island Tuesday, February 09th under the UNHCR voluntary repatriation program, the Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs Ministry said in a release yesterday.

Feb 08 (Asia Times) COLOMBO- A law against money laundering brought in by Sri Lanka’s former president Mahinda Rajapaksa during his almost decade-long rule has boomeranged on his second son, Lieutenant Yoshitha Rajapaksa.

* Key decisions on new party led by MR finalised (9 - DM)
* President Ghani receives diplomatic credentials of new Sri Lankan Ambassador (8 - KP)
* Ruling party in Sri Lanka nominates former Army Commander to parliament (8 - CP)
* PM sees brighter side of Opposition dashing coconuts (8 - Island)
* UNP Working Committee to be reorganized (8 - DM)
* Cardinal denounces ‘Sinha le’ campaign (8 - DN)
* Cycling encouraged in Sri Lanka Megapolis transport plan (8 - LBO)


Feb 09 (ESPNCI) Kasun Rajitha, Dushmantha Chameera and Dasun Shanaka - Sri Lanka's lanky seam-bowling labour force - came upon a thoroughly surprising green Pune deck, and wound up delivering their team a surprisingly thorough victory. The three quicks took eight wickets for 59 between them, to blow India away for 101. Sri Lanka's inexperienced batsmen were rarely at ease in pursuit, but did well enough to get to the target with five wickets in hand and two overs to spare.


India 101 (18.5/20 ov) Sri Lanka 6/1 (0.5/20 ov)

Feb 09 (ESPNCI) Sri Lanka won the toss and opted to bowl first on a green-tinged surface in Pune. Dinesh Chandimal felt there may be some seam movement early in the game. Seamer Kasun Rajitha and batsman Niroshan Dickwella debut for Sri Lanka. Dasun Shanaka is likely to bat in the top order and 24-year old Dushmantha Chameera takes over the lead fast bowler's role.

Feb 09 (ESPNCI) Shashikala Siriwardene will lead Sri Lanka Women in the Women's World Twenty20 and the preceding T20I series against India, which starts from February 24. Siriwardene has recovered from a thumb injury she suffered during the side's tour of New Zealand in November last year, which ruled her out of two ODIs and the following T20I series. The squad for India includes uncapped allrounders Hansima Karunaratne and Harshitha Madavi,

India Under-19s 267/9 (50.0 ov) Sri Lanka Under-19s 170 (42.4 ov)

Feb 09 (ESPNCI) India soared to the final of the Under-19 World Cup, for the fifth time, after their dominating 97-run win against Sri Lanka in the first semi-final in Mirpur. India were tested by Sri Lanka's pacers on a pitch with a tinge of green, but Anmolpreet Singh and Sarfaraz Khan added 96 together, and from thereon there was no stopping India,


Feb 09 (BBC) A satellite sent into space by North Korea is in orbit but it is not yet clear whether it is working, South Korea's defence ministry has said. The North has said the Kwangmyongsong-4 is a communications satellite and that Sunday's launch was a complete success.

More : WORLD

Feb 09 (BBC) An Indian soldier who was buried in an avalanche that struck the Siachen glacier in Indian-administered Kashmir six days ago has been found alive. Lance Naik (Corporal) Hanamanthappa Koppad was tapped under 8m of snow at a height of nearly 6,000m along with nine other soldiers who all died. Their bodies have now been recovered.

Feb 08 (BBC) India's economy grew at an average rate of 7.5% in 2015, faster than the 6.9% growth in China, official figures show. In recent history it has been unusual, but not unprecedented, for India to grow faster than China.

Feb 08 (BBC) A male leopard which entered a school in the Indian city of Bangalore injured six people trying to capture it. A scientist and a forestry employee were among those mauled during the near 10-hour long effort to corner the dangerous animal on Sunday.

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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