Saturday, May 16, 2009

Over 10,000 hostages being rescued by 59 Div troops - Wadduvakal

(defence.lk)Over an estimated number of 10,000 hostages are now being rescued by the 59 Division troops at the Wadduvakal causeway. According to military, the hostages have breached through the LTTE inner cordon leaving terrorists in total disarray.

The rescue operation is continuing amidst indiscriminate LTTE small arms attack at the hostages, security sources said adding that injured are also being shifted for immediate medical attention.

More information will follow. Full text

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Jaathiye Para Ballo...Scum bags of the nation !!!

Prabha to commit suicide

(DW)Prabhakaran and a few of his cohorts are now completely surrounded and are expected to commit suicide within the next 24hrs, thus ending a 30 year-old bloody conflict once and for all.

There is no heavy fighting at this moment as regular troops engage in clearing operations removing civilians from the area. The LTTE has given up the fight! Full text
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Swarnam, Shashikumar master killed in confrontation - Military Spokesperson

(defence.lk)Swarnam and Shasikumar master, two senior LTTE terrorists were killed during confrontations ensued with security forces at Vellamullivaikkal, today (May 16), said Military Spokesperson Brigadier Udaya Nanayakkara exclusively reporting to media.

More information will follow.

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When I return my country is free from LTTE terrorism: President


(infolanka)Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing the G-11 Summit in Dead Sea,Jordon today proudly announced that he would be returning to a country that has been totally freed from the barbaric acts of LTTE terrorism and added that such freedom came to his country after 30 long years."The defeat of the LTTE on the ground heralds a new era in Sri Lanka", the President jubilantly added. Full text
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Sri Lanka army 'defeats rebels'

(BBC)The Sri Lankan president has declared a military victory over the Tamil Tigers after 26 years of bloody civil war.

Speaking on a visit to Jordan, Mahinda Rajapakse said he would return home to a nation totally free from the "barbaric acts" of the rebel group. Full text

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Brown warns Sri Lanka over conflict

LONDON (AFP) — Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Saturday warned Sri Lanka there would be "consequences for its actions" if Colombo did not allow humanitarian agencies access to civilians and end the conflict with Tamil Tiger rebels.

Brown also called for the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to lay down its arms and allow trapped civilians to leave, and said he was backing United Nations efforts to end the conflict. Full text

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Pro-LTTE parties routed in Tamil Nadu

(EB)CHENNAI: In a dramatic coincidence, Tamil Nadu's political parties sympathetic to the Tamil Tigers were routed in the Lok Sabha elections Saturday as the Sri Lankan military dealt a crippling blow to the rebels, taking control of their last coastal belt.As the Sri Lankan army announced "the total liberation of the island's coastline from three decades of terror", vote count in Puducherry and Tamil Nadu showed that all seven candidates of the PMK and three of the four MDMK candidates had lost. Full text
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Sri Lanka president declares victory in civil war

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka – Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa said Saturday that his country had defeated the Tamil Tiger rebels on the battlefield and emerged victorious from its quarter century civil war.

"My government, with the total commitment of our armed forces, has in an unprecedented humanitarian operation finally defeated the LTTE militarily," he said referring to the rebels by their formal name, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Full text

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Ruling Congress sweeps to India election victory

NEW DELHI (AFP) – India's ruling Congress-led alliance surged to a commanding election victory Saturday, crushing its Hindu nationalist rivals and setting up a second term for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

With results still coming in from the Election Commission, the Congress grouping was on track to win as many as 260 seats against 160 for the main opposition bloc headed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

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Troops take coast as rebels face defeat: Sri Lanka

COLOMBO (AFP) – Sri Lanka said Saturday it had smashed the Tamil Tigers' maritime capability as Colombo pressed on with an offensive to crush the rebels amid growing international pressure over its tactics.

A military official said two troop divisions had linked up to grab the last piece of coastline held by the Tigers and they would soon be stripped of the remaining land they controlled. Full text

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Scarborough fire related to Sri Lankan conflict, monk says


Staff Reporter

(thestar)A Buddhist monk believes a suspected arson at a temple in Scarborough is related to the ongoing conflict in Sri Lanka.

The fire sent three monks running for safety from the building on Kingston Rd. just south of Military Trail Rd., at about 4:30 a.m. after its east emergency entrance was found burning. Police and the Ontario Fire Marshal's Office are investigating. Full text

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Tamil protests a test of our tolerance


(thestar)The global has never been more local than now. The prospect of an end to the civil war in Sri Lanka by tomorrow, as promised yesterday by Colombo, raises hopes for a truce in the rhetorical war in Canada – Toronto, in particular.

This past week we've had a cacophony of competing Canadian voices, about the Sri Lankan crisis itself and, more vociferously, about what may constitute the limits of multiculturalism. Full text

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Escape from no-fire zone

Ravi Kumar, seen here with his injured son, is one of thousands who have fled the fighting in Sri Lanka.

Stewart Bell / National PostRavi Kumar, seen here with his injured son, is one of thousands who have fled the fighting in Sri Lanka.

(NP)Ravi Kumar ran a small grocery store until the Sri Lankan army overtook the town and the Tamil rebels told him and his family to run.

They made it to the no-fire zone, an area that had been demarcated for civilians but there was so much fighting, he had to dig a bunker for his wife and two children. Full text

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War may not quash Tamil aspirations

The President of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapaksa may be on the verge of winning the war against the Tamil Tigers but he must now contend with the long-standing grievances of his country's Tamils.

Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty ImagesThe President of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapaksa may be on the verge of winning the war against the Tamil Tigers but he must now contend with the long-standing grievances of his country's Tamils.

(NP)COLOMBO -- Billboards celebrating President Mahinda Rajapaksa are everywhere in Sri Lanka's busy capital. Typically, they show him with soldiers, fighter jets or beside the army commander. Full text

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Tamil Romeo and Sinhalese Juliet

(NP)My departmental secretary was a Sinhalese woman, except we called her Ceylonese, because this was 47 years ago. No, I wasn't a high-powered executive, but back then even drones had secretaries, and my department had three, one for each drone. Mine was very pretty, wore multicoloured saris most of the time and when something amused her she moved her neck from side to side like a cobra. I called her Juliet, not because it was her name, but because it was her story. Full text
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Taking tolerance too far

(NP)The earnest people of Toronto, supported by their politicians and some of the media, are trying desperately to believe that the Tamil protesters are doing nothing wrong. True, they produce chaos on the city's roads, inconveniencing many thousands of drivers. For seven hours last weekend they closed down an east-west expressway, endangering the many children they brought with them, as well as strangers trapped like hostages in their cars and police officers scrambling to avoid disaster. Worse, they generate an air of chaos and menace. Full text
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Lanka's mission in The Hague attacked again

(CT)The Sri Lankan embassy at The Hague in the Netherlands has come under attack again for the second time within a week. Full text
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Exit of terror, advent of compassion

(news.lk)The Jetavana Stupa, considered the largest stupa in the world, will be unveiled for public worship on June 4. President Mahinda Rajapaksa will commission the newly reconstructed stupa by switching on the lighting system at the auspicious time. “This customarily calls for a moment of religious and cultural revival, and, SL Air Force will sprinkle jasmine flowers from the air in reverence,” said Cultural Affairs and National Heritage Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeyawardhana.

The renovation and conservation work of the Jetavana Stupa commenced in 1981, totally sponsored by the Central Cultural Fund. According to the ‘Mahawamsa’ King Mahasena (276-303 BC) is credited with the creation of the Jetavana Stupa comprising a diameter of 367 feet (112m) at the base. Full text

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‘Uthuru Mithuru’ '(Northern Friends)art exhibition: expressions of war displaced children

(news.lk)Encouraging the creative potential of every child is part of any government’s responsibility. “And, children, especially the war displaced, must be given the pride of place to engage in interactive spheres that encompass a vibrant program of artist-run workshops as it fan them the fun of enlightening their lives,” Deputy Minister of Social Services and Social Welfare Lionel Premasiri said at the opening ceremony of the “Uthuru Mithuru” children art exihibition. Full text
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Winning the peace in Sri Lanka

By Ravi Nair

(May 16, Chennai, Sri Lanka Guardian) This weekend or early next week will see the Sri Lankan army hoping to deliver the knockout punch to the remnants of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). But President Obama’s timely intervention is a signal to Colombo that its brazen disregard of international humanitarian law – even as it still claims to be mopping up the tenacious LTTE cadres – can no longer be ignored in diplomatic corridors. Full text
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The British making the World unliveable

By Helasingha Bandara

(May 16, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Throughout modern history Britain has created everlasting conflicts, just for their survival, in the so called developing regions of the world, particularly in Asia and Africa. A monumental example is the creation of rivalry, animosity and the hatred between India and Pakistan. It is a unanimous view of the Asians and the Africans that Britain has contributed to make the world a chaotic an unliveable place more than any other nation. They continue to do so. The invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan are recent examples. The British are again about to make a similar blunder by interfering in the Sri Lanka war against terrorism in the guise of saving Tamil civilians, influenced by the sleaziest member of the British Parliament Keith Vaz. The British media has exposed Keith vaz’s sleazy deals many a times that his integrity is in tatters if he had any at all to begin with. Read “Britain warns Sri Lankan government- BBC Sinhala, 15 May 2009”. Full text
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58 Div seize 152 artillery gun: LTTE to face humiliating defeat - Vellaimullivaikkal

58 Division troops while consolidating defences after linking-up with the 59 Div at the coast of Vellaimullivaikkal have sized a 152mm LTTE artillery gun along with a few other military hardware today (May 16).

The LTTE artillery piece was found damaged alongside a 140mm heavy mortar gun (mon-gun) by the 9th Gemunu Watch(9 GW) infantrymen, ground military sources said. Troops have also uncovered 73 x T-56 assault riffles, 05 x sub-machine guns, 11 x rocket propeller guns (RPGs), 03 x 60mm mortar guns, 02x 40mm grenade launchers, 02x 14.5mm gun barrels, 01x 81mm mortar barrel, 09 x PRC 1077 communication equipment and 03x I-com sets, according to military. (defence.lk)

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Terror proxies disturbed over LTTE defeat, torch Buddhist temple - Canada

(defence.lk)Proxy LTTE fronts and separatist pressure groups irked over LTTE's imminent defeat have taken onto vicious mob attacks with the latest reported at the venerated Mahavihara Temple in Scarborough, Toronto in Canada today (May 16).

According to independent observers, the LTTE pressure groups are probably shifting their lost momentum in the island nation to the west intended, continuing with efforts of carving out the lost utopian, 'Eelam'. Full text

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LTTE prepare for mass suicide; key terror leaders trapped

(defence.lk)LTTE terrorists are preparing for a mass suicide after being effectively cut-off of escape routes, both land and sea and now encircled in a mere 3.5sq.km of land West of Vellamullivaikkal, Wanni military sources said citing intercepted LTTE communication.

According to defence observers, the LTTE senior ranks are expecting to prolong its imminent defeat resorting to such futile terror tactics using civilian hostages, new recruits and black tigers as weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). "The terrorists have no way to go and the only way out is to surrender with the security forces or to be crushed in the military advance" a military official said. Terrorists are blowing off large explosive and ammunition dumps also using stocks of white phosphorous with improvised barrel bombs to create large destruction within the hostage makeshift camps.Full text

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Over 17,000 hostages rescued from LTTE tyranny

(defence.lk)A total of 4,568 people have sought protection with the security forces according to reports received by this afternoon (May 16).

According to military, the people were rescued amidst indiscriminate LTTE shelling and small arms attacks. 2,500 people were rescued by the 53 Div troops, 1488 by the 58 Div troops and 580 others by the 59 Division troops, MCNS sources said. Full text

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UN and Obama in sync against LTTE terror

(DN)Last Thursday could be considered the apogee of the strategy worked out by the pro-LTTE pressure and lobby groups in their efforts to throw a life line to Velupillai Prabhakaran and his coterie of terror gasping for humanitarian relief in the final days of their record of inhuman brutality that has little comparison in today's world. Full text

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Civilians desert LTTE: Final influx massive

(DN)A huge influx of civilians once again started to flow into the military controlled areas as Security Forces were ready laying siege on the remaining Tiger controlled areas yesterday whilst ground troops uncovered huge stocks of arms and ammunition of the LTTE from the areas they captured, military officials told the Daily News yesterday.

As of yesterday evening more than 15,000 civilians have arrived in military controlled areas from Friday morning. Full text

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SLA restrict LTTE to area less than 2 sq km

The LTTE have been restricted to an area less than 2 sq km; Nearly 5000 civilians were rescued by the military so far today according to a Military spokesman. (daily mirror)
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Sri Lanka issue failed in Tamil Nadu, says DMK leader

(DM)New Delhi, (IANS) DMK leader Dayanidhi Maran said Saturday that the victory of his party in the Lok Sabha elections in Tamil Nadu showed that the Sri Lankan issue had failed to sway voters in the state.

As the DMK proved pollsters wrong with a strong performance in a majority of Tamil Nadu’s 39 Lok Sabha seats, Maran told NDTV TV: “People (of Tamil Nadu) have given a clear mandate.” Full text

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GOVERNMENT CLEARS THE WAY TO HAMMER THE ‘SIXER’

(DM)Many Sri Lankans nowadays are not concerned even if their houses are on fire; rather they are interested in what is possibly going on in the relatively remote fishing village of Puthumatalan on the war front. Almost all anti-LTTE people are anxious and impatient to hear from the Government leaders (probably they won’t hear it from the military leaders) that the whole country is “liberated” from the LTTE grip. Full text
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WARRIORS VS WORRIERS

(DM)The pacifists have once again risen with recharged spirits for a massive onslaught on the eve of the declaration of a united Sri Lanka.

A US suggestion that Sri Lanka should not be given the USD 2 billion IMF loan, a British Foreign Ministry push to hold Sri Lanka for war crimes, a UN move to send Ban Ki- Moon’s envoy Vijay Nambiar to Sri Lanka, you name it, we have it all. An overdose of international politicking, on the eve of the unification of the country. Full text

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Colonel arrested in raid over LTTE links

By Ananda Weerasuriya.

(DM)The Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) and the Colombo Crime Division (CCD) in a raid conducted jointly with the assistance of the Wellawatte Police arrested a Colonel of the Army who possessed a micro pistol that belonged to a LTTE cadre.

The Police made this arrest sequel to the information revealed by an LTTE cadre and recovered the 9mm micro gun from the custody of the Colonel. The Police investigations had revealed that the Colonel was attached to an Army camp at Ratmalana. Full text

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T'nayagam case; Ranil / Prabha MoU not found

By Susitha R.Fernando

(DM)An Assistant Secretary of the Prime Minister's Office, who was summoned to give evidence in the trial of journalist J. S. Tissainayagam, said the original copy of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe and LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran was not found in the Premiers office.

Witness Subash Chaminda Roshan, an Assistant Secretary attached to the Prime Minister's Office, who was summoned to give evidence, said that he had searched for the original of the MoU signed in 2002 but could not find it in the Prime Minister's Office.Full text

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TISSANAYAGAM’S DETENTION NOT ILLEGAL SAYS SC

By S.S. Selvanayagam

(DM)The Supreme Court has refused to declare the detention of senior journalist J.S. Tissainayagam at the Terrorist Investigation Division as illegal, arbitrary and contrary to the Provisions of the Emergency Regulations.

Justice K. Sripavan with Justices Jagath Balapatabendi and Asoka de Silva held that the court was unable to rule that the petitioner had been kept in detention beyond 90 days without being produced before a court of competent jurisdiction. Full text

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Navy Commander inspects defence line

Navy Commander Wasantha Karannagoda yesterday inspected the navy’s defence line off the seas of Mullaitivu. A navy spokesman said that the Commander accompanied by senior naval officers had spent several hours in the sea close to the ‘new safe zone’ and the deep in the sea, where the off-shore patrol vessel were patrolling. (daily mirror)
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Suspect in bomb blast remanded

By Leary Beekmeyer

(DM)Additional Magistrate Colombo Gihan Pilapitiya further remanded the suspects involved in the bombing of a bus carrying disabled army personnel for medical treatment.

The bomb was placed in a flowerpot on the Kumaran Ratnam Road at the Nippon Hotel. Full text

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C-4 explosives found in Ratmalana

By Ananda Weerasuriya

(DM)Following a lead provided by an LTTE activist in custody, police unearthed 5 kg C-4 explosives from an isolated garden down St. Rita’s Road in Ratmalana.

Police believe the explosives were brought to carry out an attack in the Mt. Lavinia area, but is suspected that the explosives were brought to the location for an attack in the Mt. Lavinia area, recent search operations in the locality had prevented the plan being implemented. Full text

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Remanded for allegedly damaging image of armed forces

By T. Farook Thajudeen

(DM)On Wednesday the Colombo Chief Magistrate Nishantha Hapuarachchi remanded till May 27, five suspects involved in the telecasting of programmes allegedly causing damage to the image of the Government and the armed forces.

The Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) filing a report informed the Magistrate that the investigations were not yet concluded and sought to further detain the suspects, -Anthony Pillai Mariyasalam, Sabamalai Emmanuel alias Wilson, Emelyn Benedict, Joseph Punyamoorthy Jeyakumaran and Anthony Fernando Jegadesan. Full text

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COURT TAKES UP RIGHTS PETITION

By S.S. Selvanayagam

(DM)A petition challenging the requirements imposed on Tamils in the north to obtain clearance from the army together with a letter of permission from a person in Colombo to travel to Colombo is to be taken up in Court on the 6th June.

The petition was taken up before a Supreme Court Bench comprising Justices N.G. Amaratunga, Saleem Marsoof and S.I. Imam. Full text

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Wellawatta suicide victim identified as a student

By Kurulu Kariyakarawana and Senaka De Silva

(DM)The person who committed suicide by jumping off the seventh storey of a condominium in Wellawatta on Thursday night following a police ambush was reportedly belonging to the secondary support group of LTTE’s Colombo network.

Twenty two-year-old Thimoderm Pillai Suchindran a resident of Jaffna was reportedly an Engineering Faculty student of the University of Moratuwa. Full text

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Armed forces sacrificed their lives for country: Gotabhaya

By M. W. Somarathne

(DM)Defence Ministry Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa paying tribute to the war heroes said that around 21,500 members of the armed forces had sacrificed their lives protecting the territorial integrity and the unity of the country during the last three decades.

He added that if the country did not go to war even at this late stage it would have resulted in grave consequences. He noted that military commanders in the battlefield had told him this. Full text

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“Human Chain” calls for protection of religious places and Lankans in France

By Yohan Perera

(DM)“The Human Chain’ a non government organization (NGO) which held protests against the attacks on the Sri Lankan Diplomatic missions abroad and religious places yesterday called on the French government to ensure the safety and security of the Sri Lankan expatriates in France.

They made this request particularly on the recent attack on the Buddhist Temple in France while protesting against all the other recent attacks in UK, Netherlands and other countries as well. Full text

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TAMILS WILL BE SAVED FROM THE THREAT OF TERRORISM: PRESIDENT

(DM)President Mahinda Rajapaksa, during his official visit to Jordan to attend the G-11 Summit addressing Sri Lankan migrant workers employed at the 'Casual Wear' garment factory in the Kingdom of Jordon assured that the Tamil civilians held hostage by the LTTE in a small area of land in the North would be rescued and the Tamils would be saved from the threat of LTTE terrorism.

Speaking further President Rajapaksa greatly valued and appreciated the contribution by all Sri Lankans employed in Jordon and the Middle East towards the nation’s economy and pointed out that steps implemented by him as a minister during 1994 and 2000 enabled to attend to the welfare, and find resolutions to the problems faced by Sri Lankan migrant workers. “Because of such meaningful measures we decided to offer training to many of them who sought employment overseas”, the President noted. Full text

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Delay of loan: Amunugama displeased

By Sandun A Jayasekera

(DM)The government expressed its disappointment and displeasure yesterday over the delay to approve the US$ 1.9 billion IMF loan consequent on the negative

political comments made by the US and UK on the suitability of releasing the loan. Public Administration and Home Affairs and Deputy Finance Minister Dr. Sarath Amnugama told Daily Mirror yesterday that the board of the IMF had put in place all the basics for approving the loan the when the UK and US had cast doubts on Sri Lanka’s utilising the loan for the agreed purposes. Full text

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MILITARY SAYS V-DAY AT HAND

Sri Lanka needs IMF loan: Strauss-Kahn

May 15, 2009 (LBO) - International Monetary Fund Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn said Sri Lanka needs the help of the multilateral lending agency and talks were still underway on the IMF loan. He told a news conference Friday that Sri Lanka, which has asked for a 1.9 billion dollar IMF loan, was a "special situation". Full text

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Terence Corcoran: Tamil protests mean anyone can now stop the traffic, for any reason, at any time

Comment by Terence Corcoran

(NP)Let it be known that a new pro-capitalist organization plans to take to the streets of Toronto to protest the threat of Obamaism to Canada’s market economy. To get our message across, Canadians Harnessed Against Obama Socialism (CHAOS) will soon stage a mass rally at King and Bay. Full text
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How to handle the Tigers

(NP)'I wake up, and hear that the village from where my family came has been eliminated. Family and friends are dead or displaced. The world is merely watching, allowing the slaughter of civilians. We are not all terrorists." These are the thoughts of a Tamil here in Toronto. He is not a member -- or even a supporter -- of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (the LTTE). But he will not speak against them, even off the record. It wouldn't be smart, he says. The Tigers, even here in Canada, are reported to use tactics of coercion and intimidation to keep the Tamil community quiet and on side. Many Tamils still have family back in Sri Lanka, and they are concerned for their safety should they cross the LTTE. Full text
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Manoranjan’s interview to Canadian Radio on last week end protests

(inflanka)The pro-LTTE protesters in Toronto blocked a busy expressway going through downtown Toronto last Sunday, putting thousand of lives at risk, especialy those of young children. The Canadian public got outraged by this criminal activity, and are begining to call officials to put an end to illegal protests. Even the Toronto Police admitted that they were caught off-guard by the sudden move by the protestors to block the Gardiner Expressway. Full text
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Tamil protesters abusing our laws: PCs

By ANTONELLA ARTUSO, QUEEN'S PARK BUREAU CHIEF
The Toronto Sun

TORONTO -- The obstruction of a major Toronto highway by Tamil protesters was an abuse of the country's rights and freedoms, Ontario Conservative Leader Bob Runciman says.

"The blockade of the Gardiner was without doubt counterproductive," Runciman said during a statement to the Ontario legislature yesterday. "Ontarians are generous and understanding people and undoubtedly concerned over the loss of innocent life, be it in Darfur, the Congo or Sri Lanka. Full text

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Sri Lanka to buy military helicopters from Russia

Sri Lanka to buy military helicopters from Russia

COLOMBO, May 15 (RIA Novosti) - Sri Lanka has ordered a number of military transport helicopters and other weaponry from Russia, the country's defense secretary said in an exclusive interview with RIA Novosti.

"I have managed to reach an agreement with Russia on a loan to purchase military equipment, primarily helicopters for the air force, and other weaponry," Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said, adding that the helicopters had been already ordered. Full text

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Sri Lankan prez: War to be finished in 48 hours

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka – Sri Lanka's president vowed to end the decades-old war against the Tamil Tiger rebels within 48 hours as the military battled Friday to take complete control of the country's coastline.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa said thousands of civilians still in the war zone will be quickly freed from a tiny slice of land still controlled by the guerrillas, formally known as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Full text

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ri Lanka Navy captures Soosai's family members

(TH)Colombo (PTI) Family members of LTTE's naval wing chief Soosai, including his wife, were on Friday captured by the Sri Lankan Navy as they tried to flee the island in a boat and huge sums of money were recovered from them.

Soosai, the chief of 'Sea Tigers', is a close confidant of Velupillai Prabhakaran and said to be the senior most leader in the military wing after the LTTE supremo. Full text

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Sri Lanka vows to beat Tamil rebels within 48 hours

COLOMBO (AFP) – The Sri Lankan government vowed Friday to capture all Tamil Tiger-held territory within 48 hours, despite international calls for a truce and accounts of a "humanitarian catastrophe."

The signal that the final push against the beleaguered separatist guerrillas was in full swing came as United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's chief of staff was rushing to the island in a fresh effort to stop the carnage. Full text

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Pressure grows for Sri Lanka human rights inquiry

VERY SOON ALL OF THESE "SEEMS TO BE CONCERNED" PARTIES WILL HAVE ACCESS TO THESE AREAS

* U.N. rights chief backs inquiry into Sri Lanka war crimes

* Conflict zone may already have become a "killing field"

* Human Rights Council considers emergency session

* Aid groups appeal for war zone access and scrutiny

(Adds new U.N. spokesman quotes)

By Jonathan Lynn and Stephanie Nebehay

GENEVA, May 15 (Reuters) - U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay backs calls for an inquiry into possible war crimes in Sri Lanka's closed-off conflict zone that may have already become a "killing field," her spokesman said on Friday. Full text
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Sri Lanka military says rebels 'giving up' fight

COLOMBO (AFP) – Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers are "slowly giving up" their fight against advancing government troops, the island's military said Friday as it appeared poised to capture the last tiny strip of rebel territory.

A military spokesman told AFP around 10,000 civilians had managed to flee to government areas, and that there was now "hardly anybody left" in the rebel zone on the northeast coast. Full text

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ANALYSIS-Sri Lanka IMF war row shows geopolitics matters

By Peter Apps, Political Risk Correspondent

LONDON, May 15 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's apparent difficulty securing a $1.9 billion IMF loan -- with its conduct in its civil war becoming a key sticking point -- is a rare glimpse into how geopolitical importance can influence multilateral aid.

While fellow troubled emerging economies Ukraine and Pakistan have also had their disputes with the International Monetary Fund, many investors feel they are simply too geopolitically crucial to be allowed to default. Full text

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Sri Lanka: UN expert on genocide prevention calls for end to conflict

(UN)15 May 2009 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Adviser on the prevention of genocide today said that “it is not too late” for Sri Lanka’s Government forces and rebels to end their brutal conflict, underscoring the toll the clashes are taking on civilians.

There is still time for the Government and the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to halt their fighting and “pursue a reconciliatory and peaceful path with the ethnic Tamil population,” Francis Deng said in a statement. Full text

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IMF loan 'in progress'

Ajith Nivard Cabraal

(BBC)The Central Bank of Sri Lanka says the 1.9 billion US Dollar loan sought by the IMF is progressing without hindrance.

Central Bank Governor, Ajith Nivard Cabraal told BBC Sandeshaya that the technical stage of the loan is already completed and the IMF directors are soon expected to approve the loan. Full text

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Analysis: China arms may have secured Sri Lanka rout of Tigers

Government soldiers on a beach inside the 'No Fire Zone' where they have surrounded the Tamil Tiger rebels

(timesonline)With Sri Lanka’s military claiming to be on the verge of at last crushing the Tamil Tigers, many are asking if that victory has come thanks only to a life-saving injection of Chinese weaponry. Full text

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India should take steps for political solution in Sri Lanka, asks Karunanidhi

(TH)Chennai (PTI): Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi on Saturday said ensuring peace in Sri Lanka should be India's priority and asked the Centre to initiate immediate steps to bring about a political solution to end the ethnic strife there.

In an early morning appeal to the Centre, he said that after his April 27 fast, Sri Lankan Government, due to the efforts of the Indian Government, announced the "stoppage of hostilities". Full text

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SRI LANKA: Trade Partners Considering Economic Pressure

By Nuwan Perera

COLOMBO, May 16 (IPS) - The United States, joined by the UK, France and other EU states, are stepping up economic pressure on Sri Lanka to stop killing of civilians during ongoing battles with Tamil guerrillas in the North. The countries are planning on using a proposed IMF bailout package and trade concessions as bargaining tools.

"I think the international community is putting economic pressure on the government as nothing else has worked [in relation to international appeals to stop fighting and avoid civilian casualties]," said Jehan Perera, political commentator and executive director at the National Peace Council (NPC) here. Full text
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EU against Sri Lankan 'final assault' on Tamil rebels

(eubusiness)(BRUSSELS) - EU foreign ministers will urge the Sri Lankan government to hold back from a "final assault" against Tamil Tiger rebels, according to a draft text which expressed new concern at the civilian death toll.

"The EU calls on the government of Sri Lanka to refrain from a final assault which will result in further loss of life and to take, without delay, all necessary steps to facilitate the evacuation of the civilians trapped in the conflict zone," according to a draft statement drawn up ahead of the EU foreign ministers' meeting in Brussels on Monday. Full text

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Tamil protest clashes briefly with police

By Matthew Coutts

(NP)Tamil protesters briefly clashed with police during a demonstration on University Avenue Friday evening, after a barricade between them and a chain
of officers collapsed under pressure. Full text
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Civilian suffering cannot be justified: CommonWealth

(TH)London (PTI): Expressing deep concern at the escalating humanitarian crisis in Sri Lanka, the Commonwealth on Friday asked all sides to abide by the principles of international humanitarian law and urgently ensure safety of civilians trapped in the violent conflict.

Kamalesh Sharma, the Commonwealth Secretary General, said the LTTE must immediately stop the deplorable use of civilians as human shields and the Sri Lankan Government should maintain its stated commitment not to engage in combat operations involving heavy weaponry in the conflict zone. Full text

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Sri Lanka military cuts off rebel sea escape

(yahoo-AP)COLOMBO, Sri Lanka – Sri Lankan forces took control of the entire island's coastline Saturday, trapping the Tamil Tigers in a tiny pocket of territory and cutting off any sea escape for the rebels' top leaders, the military said.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa vowed to defeat the remaining rebel fighters and end the 25-year-old civil war by Saturday night. Full text

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Sri Lanka's coast free of terror; Army 58 Div links up with the 59 Div

(defence.lk)Sri Lankan soldiers of the Army 58 Division have linked up with the 59 Division soldiers freeing the last remaining coastal stretch under LTTE clutches. The link up marks the total liberation of the Island's coastline(3560.4sq.km) from three decades of terror.

According to the battlefield reports, infantrymen of Army 58 Division completed their three-day southbound march along the coast this morning (May 16) when they linked up with their comrades of 59 Division on the Mullaittivu frontage. Full text

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'After the war' - Island Editorial

(defence.lk)All indications are that the decapitation of the LTTE is imminent. Ink on this comment may still be wet when the final offensive draws to a successful conclusion.

It is not just a civil strife that Sri Lanka has quelled; it has won a 'world war', given the backing the LTTE received from the leading nations on a flimsy pretext. It is a miracle that a small country could withstand such unbearable international pressure without buckling and accomplish a military mission against a ruthless terrorist outfit with tentacles spread all over the world. Some world powers stand unmasked! By having made an abortive attempt to scuttle the war against the LTTE, they have forfeited whatever moral right they may have had to crusade against global terrorism. Ful text

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Sri Lankan 'refugees' in Aceh claim to be LTTE

The 55 Sri Lankans stranded in Aceh waters on Thursday (May 14) have claimed to be members of the internationally proscribed terrorist outfit LTTE, fleeing in fear of post-war trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity to seek political asylum in Australia.

According to Jakarta Globe, a local of the Alue Bilie village in Darul Makmur subdistrict, Nagan Raya district, on Friday(15), have confirmed that some of the 'refugees', have confessed that they were LTTE combatants.

Indonesians security officials are conducting further investigations.(defence.lk)

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Japan sends aid to Sri Lanka

(insidejapantours)Hundreds of tents are among the humanitarian assistance being delivered to Sri Lanka by the Japanese government, it has emerged.

The move has come in response to an appeal from the United Nations Agencies and the Sri Lankan government, which called for help to be provided for those displaced by fighting between the army and Tamil Tiger rebels. Full text
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10,000 escape from LTTE-held area: Army

B. Muralidhar Reddy
Tigers are now confined to approximately 1.5 sq km

(TH)FROM INSIDE WAR ZONE: At least 10,000 civilians trapped in and around the New Safety Zone (NSZ) under the occupation of the LTTE walked to freedom on Friday as the military after opening an escape route pushed the Tigers to an enclave of approximately 1.5 sq km along the Mullaithivu coast.

What began as a trickle on Wednesday night turned into a flood as civilians rushed into the government-controlled territory. The military is hopeful of overwhelming the remaining cadre and leaders of the Tigers in 24 to 36 hours and pave way for escape of the remaining civilians stranded in the war zone. Full text

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It’s a no-holds-barred battle in Sri Lanka

B. Muralidhar Reddy
PHOTO: AFP

FLight TO SAFETY: Tamil civilians who escaped from the clutches of the LTTE arrive in the government-held zone in Mullaithivu, in this photo released by the Sri Lankan Army on Friday. Colombo has vowed to finish off the Tamil Tigers in 48 hours.

(TH)FROM INSIDE WAR ZONE: It is a continuous buzz of explosions in and around the New-Safety Zone (NSZ) as the military and the Tigers engage in a no-holds-barred battle. The former is engaged in the combat in its declared pursuit to rescue the civilians and the latter to save the top brass of the LTTE at any cost. Full text

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Careless talk warning issued in Sri Lanka

(guardian)International staff working in Sri Lanka have been warned to avoid careless talk amid concern that the government in Colombo is going to extraordinary lengths to suppress dissent.

Staff received a notice from the European Union this week telling them to be careful when discussing the country's conflict because the government had set up a hotline for the public to call if they heard people criticising the government or the security forces. Full text

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SRI LANKA: Military Conflict vs. Propaganda War?

By Thalif Deen

UNITED NATIONS, May 15 (IPS) - The Sri Lankan government, which has come under heavy fire for the massive humanitarian crisis in the country's war zone, is winning the 25-year-old military conflict but is on the verge of losing the propaganda war overseas.

"It is a very stressful time here," says Sri Lanka's Foreign Secretary Palitha Kohona, a former chief of the U.N. Treaty Section. Full text
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Airdrop food for Tamils in Sri Lanka: Jayalalithaa

Special Correspondent
“Sri Lankan Army continuing attack on Tamils”


Jayalalithaa

(TH)CHENNAI: AIADMK general secretary Jayalalithaa on Friday urged the Centre to arrange for airdropping food in camps occupied by Tamils in Sri Lanka. Full text

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Tamils should consider course correction

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Toronto is home to the largest concentration of Sri Lankan Tamils (250,000 plus) outside that Island.

Thousands of Tamil Canadians, mainly youths, have participated in rallies, processions, vigils, picketing, street demonstrations, sit-ins, fasts, slogan-shouting and the blocking of traffic at peak hours. Full text

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When the camera lies for terror

(defenfce.lk)In the past few days the international media has been full of alleged pictorial evidence, mainly through video footage, of what they claim to be scenes of the "massive humanitarian crisis" said to be occurring in the north of Sri Lanka, where the LTTE is holding thousands of Tamil civilians hostage.

Viewers have been shown harrowing details of alleged bombings of hospitals and of many persons killed and injured, in what are said to be indiscriminate shelling by government forces, in the No Fire Zone. All of such pictorial material is attributed to pro-Tamil pressure groups abroad, especially in the West. Most of these pictures and video clips are also carried on the cyber voice of the LTTE - the Tamil Net. Very rarely are the exact locations and the dates and times when these pictures were obtained stated. Full text

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Army 58 Div links up with the 59 Div; Sri Lanka's coastline liberated

Sri Lankan soldiers of Army 58 Division have linked up with the 59 Division soldiers freeing the last remaining coastal stretch under LTTE clutches. The link up marks the total liberation of the coastline of the Island nation.(defence.lk)
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Tamil IDP's are very grateful to Sri Lanka Army for helping them to escape - British MP

(By Walter Jayawardhana)

(defence.lk)Speaking among extremely agitated pro-Tamil Tiger members in the House of Commons, Liberal Democratic MP Malcom Bruce, who visited Sri Lanka IDP camps last week said the Internally Displaced people in the camps are very grateful to the Sri Lanka Army for giving them the opportunity escape.

Malcom Bruce MP said, "I can and should report what people said. They were grateful to the Sri Lankan army for giving them the opportunity to escape and were glad to be out of the conflict zone. In response to direct questions, they said they had not left earlier because the LTTE had basically said, "If you try to leave, you will be shot." They had evidence of people who had tried and who had been shot at. That is an objective fact." Full text

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Prabha's last night

(DW)By the time this report is being compiled, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam are preparing for its last attack. A meeting was called a few hours ago by Soosei who literally handed-over his family to the Navy (appears to the public as a capture by the Navy) calling on Black Sea Tigers to launch a series of attacks targeting the 58 and the 59 Divisions.

The two Divisions are expected to link-up shortly thus sealing shut the coastal zone and completely land locking the Tigers. The 59 Division faced stiff resistance as they approached the area closest to Prabhakaran's known location. Full text

Friday, May 15, 2009

War Nerd: The Tamil Tigers Shoulda Listened to Yo’ Mao-Mao

By Gary Brecher

prabhakaran

Velupillai Prabhakaran: LTTE’s Guerrilla Generalissimo

(theexiled)One thing you have to give the doomed Tamil rebels in Sri Lanka credit for: their supporters sitting in comfortable first-world cities have no shame when it comes to begging for help. Militarily the Sri Lankan Tamils are o-vuh, but when it comes to demanding favors from people who have every reason to hate their guts, these guys are world-class. For some hilarious examples of propaganda from a doomed army, check out the LTTE’s glossy but totally insane website, Tamilnet. Full text

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Sea Tiger chief's family found among fleeing IDPs

Sri Lanka navy sea units have identified the family members of LTTE's Sea Tiger wing leader Soosai this morning (May 15) when they rescued a boat consisting 11 civilians.

According to the sources, the sailors have found 5 members of Soosai's family , including Soosai's wife, son, daughter, sister in law and her son. The suspects have been identified Sathyadevi (Soosai's wife), Suresh (16 year old Soosai's son), and Madhi (17 year old Soosai's daughter).

The sources further added that a large sum of money has been found in the possession of the Soosai's family members. More information will follow..(defence.lk)

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The rescue mission speeds up; Kariyalamullaivaikkal Tsunami Village liberated

Sri Lankan soldiers now engaged in the final phase of their humanitarian operation in the Island's northeast, have liberated the inhabitants of the Kariyalamullai Tsunami relief village.

According to the defence sources, over 1590 civilians held at hostage in this area by the LTTE have sought refuge with the 58 Division soldiers by the time of filing this report. The sources add that thousands more civilians are arriving at the rescue points manned by troops.

More information will follow...(defence.lk)

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To the West, Sri Lanka is Exhibit A

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent Asian Tribune

Washington, D.C. 14 May (Asiantribune.com): We produce here three statements made about the situation in Sri Lanka. When one goes through these statements one may arrive at the conclusion that to the West, Sri Lanka has become ‘Exhibit A’.

The following statement was made by the U.S. State Department spokesman Ian Kelly Tuesday, 12 May at the daily press briefing. Full text

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Ban discusses protection of civilians with Sri Lankan leader, dispatches top aide

(UN)14 May 2009 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has once again expressed his concerns about the protection of civilians caught up in the conflict in Sri Lanka to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, and has dispatched one of his top advisers to the South Asian nation.

During his telephone conversation yesterday with the Sri Lankan leader, Mr. Ban reiterated his concerns about the protection of civilians as fighting continues between Government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), UN spokesperson Marie Okabe told reporters in New York. Full text

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LTTE preparing for slaughter: Colombo

B. Muralidhar Reddy

FROM INSIDE THE WAR ZONE: The Defence Ministry said the LTTE is preparing for the worst slaughter of civilians with the systematic use of hostages as a weapon of mass destruction.

“Substantial evidence has surfaced from the battlefront that LTTE terrorists are using white phosphorous as a weapon in reprehensible attacks at both advancing security forces and hostages fleeing from the LTTE,” it said. “According to reliable ground information received, [the] terrorists are reportedly laying large quantities of white phosphorus surrounding makeshift camps of hostages within the narrow strip of land it still holds, and are burying improvised bombs that would ultimately result in a humanitarian catastrophe, with the bomb explosions leading to phosphorous burns on both civilians and advancing troops,” the Ministry said. Full text

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Suffering in Sri Lanka

The defeat of the Tamil Tigers will bring a terrible episode in Sri Lanka to a close.

(telegraph)The long agony of civilians trapped inside the inferno of Sri Lanka's northern war zone may, at last, be easing. Some 2,000 are reported to have escaped this ruined enclave, ironically named a "no-fire zone", where a devastating bombardment has claimed hundreds of lives and struck the only working hospital in the last week alone.

If this terrible episode is drawing to a close, with the final defeat of the Tamil Tiger rebels, that is wholeheartedly to be welcomed. The Tigers have cynically maximised human suffering by trapping innocent people inside the only territory still under their control. Full text

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IMF loan for Sri Lanka not appropriate right now: Clinton

WASHINGTON (AFP) — US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said here Thursday it "is not an appropriate time" to consider a massive International Monetary Fund loan for Sri Lanka.

Clinton told reporters that the United States has been "trying to convince both sides," the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tiger guerrillas, to stop fighting. Full text

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U.S. Navy had prepared options to assist Sri Lanka

Special Correspondent

(TH)NEW DELHI: The United States Navy had prepared a set of options to evacuate or provide humanitarian assistance to civilians trapped in the war zone of Sri Lanka.

Disclosing this, the U.S. Pacific Command chief, Admiral Timothy J. Keating, said here that an assessment team had visited Sri Lanka some two-three months ago for an assessment and had subsequently submitted a list of options to the U.S. government. Full text

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Bravo SLYC & SLUNA!

(sandeshaya-canada)Armed with a 50 foot banner, placards and posters created by Sandeshaya-Canada, 50-60 group of brave Sri Lanka Youth of Canada along with Sri Lanka United National association (SLUNA) yesterday achieved something many Torontonians have been wishfully thinking, should be done. THEY PROTESTED THE PROTESTORS! Not only did they stood over the DVP catching the attention of all the evening rush hour traffic, but they also got the attention of the "fake" demonstrators at Queen's Park, who were bewildered to find a small Air Plane circling above their heads with a banner clearly giving a message to the Toronto citizens. PROTECT CANADA, STOP THE TAMIL TIGERS. Full text

Sri Lankan embassy calls for support against Tamil rebels

BY VICTOR IKOLI

(the peninsula)DOHA: The Sri Lankan Embassy has called upon the international community to support its government in its fight against the rebel group, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

The Sri Lankan government has given paramount priority to ensuring the safety of civilians trapped in the war zone in the north of the country, where the military is in the final stages of a battle to crush the rebels, the embassy said. The security forces were engaged in rescue missions and would continue to do so since the LTTE has not made any attempt to release the civilians it was holding hostage, it said. Full text
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