International

Pakistan sacks provincial minister for anti-Hindu comments

Views - 7 Wednesday, 6 March 2019 00:00

Islamabad (Reuters): Pakistan’s government sacked a provincial minister on Tuesday for making offensive comments about Hindus, amid easing tensions with India after the two nuclear-armed neighbours came to the brink of war last month. Punjab provin


Queen marks 50th anniversary of investiture of son Charles as Prince of Wales

Views - 8 Wednesday, 6 March 2019 00:00

London (Reuters): Britain’s Queen Elizabeth held a reception at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday to mark the 50th anniversary of the investiture of her oldest son Charles as Prince of Wales. Senior royals including Charles’s own sons William and Harr


British PM May’s top lawyer heads to Brussels in last-ditch Brexit bid

Views - 9 Wednesday, 6 March 2019 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): Prime Minister Theresa May’s top government lawyer heads to Brussels on Tuesday, a last-ditch bid to secure changes to a Brexit deal needed to get the agreement through parliament and smooth Britain’s departure from the European


British PM urges Pakistan PM action on terrorist groups

Views - 4 Tuesday, 5 March 2019 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): British Prime Minister Theresa May emphasised the importance of Pakistan taking action against all terrorist groups in a call with Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday, May’s office said. India and Pakistan came to the brink of war


US Trade Representative issues notice on delay of China tariff increase

Views - 1 Tuesday, 5 March 2019 00:00

REUTERS: The United States Trade Representative’s office (USTR) has released language to delay a scheduled hike in tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, due to be published in the Federal Register next week. The notice is scheduled to be


US and China said to appear close to deal to roll back tariffs

Views - 1 Tuesday, 5 March 2019 00:00

WASHINGTON (Reuters): The United States and China appear close to a deal that would roll back US tariffs on at least $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, as Beijing makes pledges on structural economic changes and eliminates retaliatory tariffs on US


UK firms report weakest growth since April 2013: CBI

Views - 11 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): British businesses reported their weakest growth in nearly six years during the past three months due to fears of a no-deal Brexit and rising global trade barriers, the Confederation of British Industry said yesterday. The CBI’s i


IMF’S Lagarde says messy Brexit could have ‘significant consequences’

Views - 15 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

LISBON (Reuters): A messy Brexit could have “significant consequences” and represents the biggest short-term risk to the British economy, although all Brexit outcomes imply costs, IMF chief Christine Lagarde told Portugal’s state council on Fri


US consumer spending, factory data point to weak first quarter GDP growth

Views - 14 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

WASHINGTON (Reuters): US personal income fell for the first time in more than three years in January and consumer spending dropped by the most since 2009 in December, putting the economy on a weak growth path early in the first quarter. The economic


Trump says strong dollar hurting US competitiveness

Views - 14 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

OXON HILL, Md. (Reuters): President Donald Trump on Saturday renewed criticism of the Federal Reserve and said the US Central Bank’s tight monetary policy was contributing to a strong dollar and hurting the United States’ competitiveness. “We h


US-backed force expects “decisive battle” against Islamic State

Views - 4 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

NEAR BAGHOUZ, Syria (Reuters): The US-backed Syrian force closing in on Islamic State’s last territorial bastion near the Iraqi border expects a “decisive battle” yesterday after advancing slowly, a spokesman said overnight. Capturing Baghouz,


Iran warns US allies of ‘humiliated citizens’ uprising

Views - 4 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

TEHRAN, AFP: US allies in the Middle East risk an uprising by their “humiliated citizens” if they continue to rely on Washington, a top Iranian security official warned Sunday in comments carried by State media. “(US President) Trump and even


Malaysia’s ruling coalition loses seat in state by-election

Views - 3 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters): Malaysia’s ruling coalition lost a state constituency in a by-election on Saturday, in a sign of waning popularity of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad’s alliance. Mahathir’s Pakatan Harapan coalition, or Alliance of Hope,


Trump slams Mueller, mocks critics in fiery two-hour speech

Views - 4 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

OXON HILL, MARYLAND (Reuters): President Donald Trump on Saturday attacked US Special Counsel Robert Mueller ahead of his report on alleged Russia collusion by the Trump campaign in 2016 and said his political opponents were “trying to take me out


Pakistan to lodge UN complaint against India for ‘eco-terrorism’ forest bombing

Views - 2 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

ISLAMABAD (Reuters): Pakistan plans to lodge a complaint against India at the UN, accusing it of “eco-terrorism” over airstrikes that damaged pine trees and brought the nuclear-armed nations to blows, a Government minister said on Friday. India a


Chinese President Xi Jinping

Views - 4 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang arrive for the opening session of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, 3 March – Reuters


70 Labour lawmakers oppose second Brexit referendum

Views - 3 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

LONDON (REUTERS): As many as 70 of Britain’s opposition Labour lawmakers oppose holding a second Brexit referendum, Labour lawmaker Caroline Flint said on Sunday. Earlier this week Labour said it would back a second referendum in order to try to pr


India refuses to share proof of strikes in Pakistan amid doubts of militant deaths

Views - 3 Monday, 4 March 2019 00:00

MUZAFFARABAD, Pakistan/SRINAGAR, India (Reuters): A top Indian minister said on Saturday the Government would not share proof that “a very large number” of militants were killed in air strikes inside Pakistan this week, after doubts were raised t


Pompeo says world should have eyes wide open about Chinese tech risks

Views - 3 Saturday, 2 March 2019 00:10

MANILA (Reuters): US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday that the world should be “eyes wide open” about the risks of using Chinese technology, and that there could be problems for American firms operating in certain places where Huawei


Israeli Attorney-General plans to charge Netanyahu in corruption cases

Views - 1 Saturday, 2 March 2019 00:00

JERUSALEM (Reuters): Israel’s Attorney-General announced on Thursday he intends to indict Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on corruption charges, a decision coming just six weeks before a closely contested national election. It was the first time


Bangladesh tells UN Security Council cannot take more Myanmar refugees

Views - 1 Saturday, 2 March 2019 00:00

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters): Bangladesh told the United Nations Security Council on Thursday that it cannot take any more refugees from Myanmar, some 18 months after more than 700,000 mainly Rohingya Muslims started pouring across the border fleeing a m


New Zealand arms some police after shootouts

Views - 1 Saturday, 2 March 2019 00:00

WELLINGTON (Reuters): Frontline police in New Zealand’s Canterbury District on the southern island will be armed until further notice following three shooting incidents that sparked a debate on whether all police should carry fire arms. New Zealand


Asian shares up after MSCI announces China weighting boost

Views - 3 Saturday, 2 March 2019 00:00

SHANGHAI (Reuters): Asian shares rose on Friday, driven by a rally in Chinese markets after index publisher MSCI announced it would boost the proportion of mainland shares in its global benchmarks, while strong US economic data helped the dollar high


Oil slides as US crude production hits record, Asia factory output weakens

Views - 0 Friday, 1 March 2019 00:00

SINGAPORE (Reuters): Oil prices dipped on Thursday, dragged down by weakening factory output in China and Japan and record US crude output, although markets remained relatively well supported by supply cuts led by producer club OPEC. International Br


Donald Trump Jr. signed checks for hush money related to affair: Cohen

Views - 0 Friday, 1 March 2019 00:00

WASHINGTON (Reuters): President Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen testified to Congress on Wednesday that some reimbursement checks issued to him for hush-money payments to an adult film star were signed by Donald Trump Jr. and the Trump O


Trump walks away from deal with North Korea’s Kim over sanctions demand

Views - 3 Friday, 1 March 2019 00:00

HANOI (Reuters): US President Donald Trump said on Thursday he had walked away from a nuclear deal at his summit with Kim Jong Un because of unacceptable demands from the North Korean leader to lift punishing US-led sanctions. Trump said two days of


US, UK, France ask UN to blacklist militant leader behind Kashmir attack

Views - 0 Friday, 1 March 2019 00:00

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters): The United States, Britain and France proposed on Wednesday that the United Nations Security Council blacklist the head of Pakistan-based militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad, which said it attacked an Indian paramilitary convoy


Trump hints at de-escalation between India and Pakistan as US mediates

Views - 3 Friday, 1 March 2019 00:00

New Delhi/Srinagar (Reuters): United States President Donald Trump said on Thursday there would be some “reasonably decent news” on the ongoing conflict between India and Pakistan, a day after the two nuclear powers both downed enemy jets and Pak


China expresses ‘deep concern’ over India-Pakistan conflict

Views - 3 Friday, 1 March 2019 00:00

SHANGHAI (Reuters): A senior Chinese diplomat expressed “deep concern” over the escalation of tensions between India and Pakistan on Wednesday, after the two countries said they shot down each other’s fighter jets. State Councillor Wang Yi, the


Pakistan announces release of Indian pilot as ’peace gesture’

Views - 1 Friday, 1 March 2019 00:00

Islamabad (APP): Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday announced the release of the captive Indian Air Force pilot as a peace gesture. “As a peace gesture, we are going to release the Indian pilot tomorrow,” the Prime Minister said at the floor


Today's Columnists

Playing with history

Friday, 22 March 2019

First of all, I was delighted to note a counter criticism ‘A reply to Victor Ivan’s ‘What went wrong with Sri Lanka?’ published in the Financial Times on 11 March in response to my article which appeared in the same newspaper on 22 February.


Sathyodaya for salvation

Friday, 22 March 2019

Professor Ven. Walpola Rahula (1907-1997), a Buddhist rationalist and free-thinker of international repute, was a unique intellectual, teacher and writer who never minced his words when speaking truth to power, a rare quality fast disappearing in a w


Ceylon Tea or Sri Lanka Tourism the stronger category brand?

Thursday, 21 March 2019

The Central Bank officially reported last week that Sri Lanka exports have grown to $ 11.9 billion, recording a growth of 4.7%, which means that the country has not performed up to expectation in 2018. The export volume index has grown by 0.5% in 201


Lip service to AML requirements: Are Sri Lankan designated institutions skating on thin ice?

Thursday, 21 March 2019

The recent announcement by the European Union (EU) blacklisting 20 odd jurisdictions for their failure to adhere to anti money laundering requirements (AML) comes as no surprise as all these jurisdictions have been forewarned by the EU, Financial Act


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