President assures domestic mechanism to probe rights violations during war

Published : 12:05 am  February 16, 2015  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  353 views  |  
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  President Maithripala Sirisena on Friday assured the diplomatic community that his Government will not hesitate to punish the offenders of human rights violations said to have taken place during the war after the conduct of a credible domestic inquiry through a judicial process into the allegations. Meeting with the diplomatic corps in Colombo, President Sirisena said foreign policy of the present Government is to strengthen the cooperation with all countries and international organisations that extend support to all communities. He said the policy of the new Government is to work in cooperation with international organisations. Soliciting the support of other countries for the development... 

Nutrition needs to the fore

Published : 12:02 am  February 16, 2015  |  Category: News  |  1 Comment  |  406 views  |  
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  State Minster on Child Affairs Rosy Senanayake last week met Beth Crawford, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) representative in Sri Lanka, and discussed ways and means of improving nutrition standards of children in Sri Lanka. Issues on developing an early childhood nutrition policy, launching a school-based nutrition program for children and advocacy programs on nutrition awareness were discussed at length. The Minister briefed the FAO representative on Rs. 20,000 nutritional package project under the 100-day program and sought assistance of the UN agency for its smooth implementation  Read More →

SLFP amends Party Constitution

Published : 12:00 am  February 16, 2015  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  378 views  |  

The Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Executive Committee, which met on Saturday, amended the Party Constitution and made changes to some positions in the party. Former Presidents Mahinda Rajapaksa and Chandrika Kumaratunga had been invited to attend the SLFP Executive Committee meeting but they had not turned up. SLFP General Secretary Anura Priyadharshana Yapa said that Rajapaksa and Kumaratunga had informed the party that they were unable to attend today’s meeting owing to some prior commitments. Yapa said that Rajapaksa had also assured, in a letter to the party that he will continue to be with the SLFP and support the new party leadership. At the SLFP Executive Committee meeting, the two... 

Sri Lanka, India release detained fishing boats ahead of Maithri’s visit

Published : 12:00 am  February 16, 2015  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  270 views  |  

Xinhua: Sri Lanka and India have decided to release fishing boats taken into custody from both countries ahead of the visit of Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena to India on Sunday, a Government Minister said here. State Minister of Fisheries Dilip Wedaarachchi said that the Sri Lankan Government has already taken measures to release 86 Indian boats in its custody. The boats were seized when Indian fishermen were arrested on several occasions in Sri Lankan waters. The fishermen had already been freed and Wedaarachchi said that the Government had now decided to free the boats as a goodwill measure to mark Sirisena’s first visit to India since taking oaths as President last month. He also... 

Report on Sri Lanka is up to UN Human Rights Chief: US

Published : 12:00 am  February 16, 2015  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  76 views  |  

Washington, DC: The United States says that the decision on the report on probe into Sri Lanka’s war it is up to the High Commissioner of United Nations Human Rights Council Prince Zeid Ra’ad Zeid Al-Hussein. US State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki Friday said the issue was discussed during meetings Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera had with the US Government this week. However, she has observed that it is a matter for the UN High Commissioner to determine and the US has absolute confidence in him and in the process. The Sri Lankan Minister met Secretary of State John Kerry Thursday to discuss the bilateral relationship and other regional issues, Psaki said. “The Secretary... 

Faizer, Azath want new commission to probe attacks against Muslims

Published : 12:00 am  February 16, 2015  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  99 views  |  

SLFP MP Faizer Mustapha and Central Provincial Council Member Azath Sally have asked President Maithripala Sirisena to appoint a commission to inquire into the “hate campaign and violence” against Muslims in the last four years and take appropriate measures to ensure that all Sri Lankans are protected, the New Indian Express reported. “Your Excellency is well aware that the instigators of the pogrom in Aluthgama and Beruwala have not been brought to justice as promised by former President Rajapaksa,” they said in a letter to Sirisena. Mustapha and Sally pointed out that several other promises made to the Muslims had not been kept and submitted a document giving details of “hundreds”... 

100,000 houses program to be completed by end 2016

Published : 1:21 am  February 14, 2015  |  Category: News  |  1 Comment  |  741 views  |  

By Channa Fernandopulle The new Government is to build 100,000 houses in two phases with the first by the end of this year and the second by 2016. Minister of Housing and Samurdhi, Sajith Premadasa said the aim of the project is to commence construction of 100,000 houses for the benefit of Sri Lanka’s homeless and poverty stricken within 100 days with 50,000 houses to be funded by the Government of Sri Lanka at a cost of Rs. 5 billion. He revealed these details at a forum with the construction industry. Premadasa went on to invite members of the Chamber of Construction Industry (CCI) to join other well-wishers and donors to help complete the second phase of his project. “Some may misconstrue... 

UN Chief stresses importance of credible mechanisms to ensure accountability

Published : 1:20 am  February 14, 2015  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  396 views  |  

New York: United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon continues to stress the importance of a credible mechanism of international standards to ensure accountability. Spokesperson for the Secretary-General, Stéphane Dujarric, responding to a question posed at a press briefing on Thursday said that the Secretary-General’s position on the human rights investigation is unchanged. “He’s obviously aware that the new administration is considering setting domestic accountability mechanisms and will be carefully assessing these developments,” the spokesperson said. “The Secretary General has stressed the importance of Sri Lanka establishing credible mechanisms that meet international standards.... 

Mangala underscores importance of shared common values, ideals between SL and US

Published : 1:14 am  February 14, 2015  |  Category: News  |  1 Comment  |  443 views  |  
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The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mangala Samara-weera, addressing the National Press Club in Washington DC on Thursday, highlighted the fact that Sri Lanka and the United States are two countries that shared “common values and ideals based on a commitment to democratic principles and governance.” The Minister pointed out that person to person contact between the two countries pre-dated diplomatic relations in 1948 by 150 years. Speaking on the Government’s commitment to broaden and strengthen ties between Washington and Colombo, Minister Samaraweera emphasised that the US remained the single largest export market for Sri Lanka and the second largest foreign direct investor in the country... 

Northerners to get their land back

Published : 12:06 am  February 13, 2015  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  858 views  |  
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Cabinet approves release of 1,000 acres of HSZ land 220 acres to be distributed under phase 1, pilot village for 1,022 displaced families Air Force land in east also to be released, buildings around President’s House and Temple Trees back to public Ahead of President Maithripala Sirisena’s visit to India, Cabinet has approved the release of 1,000 acres of land that had been controversially absorbed into High Security Zones (HSZ) in the north. Under phase one, 220 acres in J 284 Valalai Grama Niladhari Division of Valikamam East will be released to establish a pilot village where 1,022 families will be given 20 perches of land and financial assistance to build a house. Basic infrastructure... 

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