Peace for the World

Peace for the World
First democratic leader of Justice the Godfather of the Sri Lankan Tamil Struggle: Honourable Samuel James Veluppillai Chelvanayakam

Saturday, June 30, 2012


Published on Jun 29, 2012 by 
The International Criminal Court deals with the most serious criminal cases that national courts are either unable or unwilling to deal with. This month is it's tenth anniversary and this video looks at it's successes it's failures and the challenges it still faces in bringing to justice those accused of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Colombo Telegraph

By Donald Gnanakone -

Sri Lanka’s War Crimes: US Should Not Dance Around UN And UNHRC

Read More


Sri Lanka Can’t Deny: Colombo Telegraph Revelation Turns Sri Lanka’s War Crime In To A New Chapter

Friday, June 29, 2012

Offices of two websites raided by state intelligence apparatus; 7 Journalists and two staff arrested; 6 computers confiscated

NFR logo
This morning around 11.45 am around 25 offices from police intelligence arms, namely Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and Colombo Crime Division (CCD) raided two popular tri lingual news and opinion web site operated form Colombo. They are  and . Both Sri Lanka Mirror and SriLankaXnews are read by tens of thousands of readers daily.
Sri Lanka Mirror is registered with the information ministry and SriLankaXnews is the official web site of the opposition United National Party.  Both of offices  we located at 71, Ferry road, Athul Kotte, Kotte, a suburb of Colombo.
Police has obtained a court order to search the premises of both web sites.   But the acting police spokesperson Sanjeewa Madawatta has told Yukthiya web site that he dose not have any knowledge of the raid and reasons for it.
Police has surrounded the residence of Mr. Ruwan Ferdinanz, current editorial director of the Sri Lanka X news and former editorial director of the Sri Lanka Mirror and has demanded that he surrender his laptop computer to them. By the time he has left the residence.
The journalists arrested are being questioned at the notorious 4th floor of the Criminal Investigation Department. They are:
Mr.Kalum Shwantha Rodrigu – Editor SriLanka Mirror
Ms.Shiwanthi Manawadu 0 Weekend editor, SriLanka Mirror
Ms.Himashi Karunarathan, Features editor, SriLanka Mirror
Ms.Tarindu Rajapaksha, Feature writer, SriLanka Mirror
Mr.Ajith senavirathna, Photo journalist, SriLanka Mirror
Mr.Zidick Kariyappa, editor, Tamil section, Sri Lanka X news
Mr.J. Subash Jayawardana, Journalist , Feature writer, Sri Lanka X news
Mr.Asanaka Nimathna, Managing editor Sri Lanka Mirror
Ms. R.W. Premawathi, Offcie assistance, Sri Lanka Mirror
Mr. Sunil Jayasekara, secretary of the Free Media Movement of Sri Lanka told NfR Sri Lanka that this raid is another attempt to intimidate non state media in Sri Lanka and joint efforts need to face mounting intimidations and censorship.  He calls on all democratic forces in the country to rise against  this dangerous trend of media suppression.
Mr. Ruwan Ferdinanz told NfR Sri Lanka that at a time that three Provincial Councils dissolved and elections are to be held in two months time closure of opposition and independent media outlets and threats an intimidation directed against journalists and media should be considered as a great threat to rule of law and democracy in Sri Lanka.

Written by 

Sri Lanka Mirror Staffers Arrested And Taken To The Fourth Floor By CID

June 29, 2012

By Colombo Telegraph -
Colombo TelegraphNine staffers including several journalists were arrested and taken to the fourth floor for questioning after the Criminal Investigations Department raided the offices of the Sri Lanka Mirror and Sri Lanka X News websites earlier today.
Sri Lanka Mirror Editor Ruwan Ferdinands with Minister Basil
The CID which was conducting the raid based on a court order, raided the websites’ offices in Kotte this afternoon and seized seven computers from the premises, UNP MP Mangala Samaraweera told Colombo Telegraph.
Reports say the CID sealed the computers and checked mobile phone records during the raid.
Samaraweera said he had seen the court order authorizing the raid but could not provide further details.
Following the raid on the offices of the news websites, CID officers are now at the residence of Sri Lanka Mirror Editor Ruwan Ferdinands in Narahenpita, the opposition MP added.
Colombo Telegraph learns that several Sri Lanka Mirror staffers including Ferdinands have gone into hiding following the raid.
Update: Video and Picture added

Nine staffers including several journalists were arrested and taken to the fourth floor for questioning(Pix by Pradeep Dilrukshana / Daily mirror)

Satans hate saints : Clean AG too bad for sordid MaRa regime – to be replaced therefore

(Lanka-e-News-29.June.2012, 4.00PM) Since the first SL female Attorney General Ms. Eva Wanasundara is performing her duties with integrity and rectitude safeguarding the dignity of the lofty judicial position she holds (unlike many others now in the judiciary, and Mohan Peiris of the past ) , the MaRa regime which has an anathema to honesty , integrity , rectitude and dignity in a public official is making arrangements to rid her of her official position., by appointing her as a judge of the Supreme Court (SC) . This nomination had been presented to the select Committee for Parliamentary approval. Indeed , this prospective change is a demotion and not a promotion to Eva Wanasundara.

Former solicitor General ,Priyasad Dep and assist. Solicitor general Sathya Hettige who are far below her in the rank have already been appointed as SC judges. Hence this AG is going to become a SC judge as a much more junior judge. If an AG is to be appointed to the SC , he/she must take up a position of chief justice and nothing less( not a SC judge position ) as a practice.

It is very obvious why the MaRa regime is tumbling over to remove Eva Wanasundara from the AG post even when she has two more years to continue as AG and who had been discharging her duties scrupulously maintaining a clean career record. This is because MaRa is eager to appoint another unscrupulous lackey like ‘Mohan Peiris’ (her predecessor) who incurred the wrath of all by stooping disgracefully degrading even the long respected hallowed traditions of the judiciary to do the sordid biddings of MaRa regime.

The present Solicitor general, Sarath Palitha Fernando whom the MaRa regime is anxious to promote as AG , is a strong disdainful stooge of MaRa regime. This is the same Solicitor General who in the Baratha Lakshman murder case that is being heard in the courts , by enacting a spurious drama distorting the actual events , and without giving legal instructions that would incriminate Duminda Silva , the prime suspect, and in order to safeguard MaRa regime’s interests, descended to the lowest sordid levels instead of performing his duties duly as a Solicitor general. Due to this dereliction of duties abusing his official lofty position , Eva Wanasundara had bitterly castigated and berated this pro MaRa Solicitor General recently.

An Assist solicitor General who disgorged the factual episode , said , MaRa to whom this matter was reported had taken this step to remove Eva Wanasundara in order to teach her a lesson and close her gab.

According to this same Assist. Solicitor general, even now Palitha Fernando by ignoring and sidelining five most efficient Deputy solicitor generals , has made them get disgusted of their jobs. The main reason for this is , this solicitor general prefers contemptuous sycophancy to efficiency . As he hates those who do their duties accurately and efficiently so he prefers those who neglect official duties but stoop to contribute to Palitha Fernando’s shameless sordid activities aimed at pleasing MaRa and complying with all his illicit requests.
The assist . solicitor General also lamented that , the AG dept . is fast hurtling down towards that old disgraceful era of Mohan Peiris , and that degeneration in the AG’s dept . cannot be stalled under any circumstance when there are officers like Sarath Palitha Fernando who have no qualms about even luring a young female lawyer in the Dept . who is younger than his own daughter to be his paramour depriving that young lawyer of a happy married life. In other words he is prostituting his official position for immoral gains. Right now he is infamous as a political ‘pimp’, but going by his sex starved nature his becoming an actual pimp will be unsurprising , the assist solicitor General who knows the ins and outs of Palitha Fernando said.

WikiLeaks: Gota Angry With Editors Lalith Allahakkon And Iqbal Athas

June 29, 2012By Colombo Telegraph -
Colombo Telegraph“Balasuriya and Jayantha said the Defense Secretary had expressed anger at other journalists, including Nation editor Lalith Allahakoon and Defense columnist Iqbal Athas: ‘what he’s doing is very harmful.’ Athas told Pol chief that pressure on him had increased considerably since Noyhar’s abduction. He complained that the private radio station TNL (note: owned by the brother of opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe) had aired a talk show insulting Athas, which he said consisted of ‘an hour of vulgar vituperation.’ Athas linked this to the Defense Secretary’s “offensive” against the media.” the US Embassy Colombo informed Washington.
Iqbal Athas
Lalith Allahakkoon
Secretary to the ministry of Defence Gotabhaya Rajapaksa made above remarks with Sanath Balasooriya, the president  of Sri Lanka Working Journalists Association and it’s secretary Poddala Jayantha.
The Colombo Telegraph found the related leaked cable from the WikiLeaks database dated June 2, 2008. The cable is classified as “CONFIDENTIAL” and written by the US Ambassador to Colombo Robert Blake. The cable details the media suppression situation just after the abduction and beating of defense journalist Keith Noyahr. The cable also details a meeting Secretary to the ministry of Defence Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and two media workers Sanath Balasooriya and Poddala jayantha has had with.
The badly beaten Noyahr being rushed to Hospital - Chrisantha Cooray, the CEO of the company that publishes the Nation and its Sinhala-language sister newspaper Rivira, had fled to London
Under the subheading “Newspaper Executives fear for their lives, families” the US ambassador wrote “Allahakoon told DCM, Pol Chief and Public Affairs Counselor on May 29 that he had called President Rajapaksa immediately on the night of Noyahr’s disappearance and that the President had said he would ‘do everything’ to assure Noyahr’s return. Allahakoon credited the intensive campaign he and other friends of Noyahr mounted overnight with saving the journalist’s life. Allahakoon believed that the purpose of the abduction and beating of Noyahr was to try to determine which military commanders were leaking information to journalists. He reported that Noyahr had told him he had received threats that his family would be the next victims if he spoke about his abduction. Therefore, Noyahr would not make a statement to police about what happened to him. He told us that the Nation editorial offices and his home were under surveillance, and that he had received threats. Padmakumara had called him and told him to be very careful. He had moved his family from their home to a commercial district hotel as a precaution, but his children were afraid to leave the hotel to go to school. He was seeking to leave Sri Lanka temporarily until the current crisis subsided, he said.”
Unknown group had invaded the residence of the defense reporter Sirimevan Kasthuriarachchi of the Sinhala-language Divaina at 4 a.m. and threatened him
Frederica Jansz reported to police that someone had slashed the throat of a rooster and left the carcass outside her office
“Allahakoon said that Chrisantha Cooray, the CEO of the company that publishes the Nation and its Sinhala-language sister newspaper Rivira, had fled to London. Nation staff were afraid to report to work because of the heavy surveillance of its offices. He also feared the consequences of not publishing a paper on Sunday, since the government might regard this as an affront. He had therefore asked the editor of a small-circulation weekly to put out an innocuous, slimmed-down edition to avoid incurring the government’s displeasure. Sri Lankan media reported on June 1 that Cooray had resigned from the publishing company and that the London-Based Sena Yaddahige, 51% owner of the newspapers, was negotiating to sell his remaining stake to Sujit ‘Nissanka’ Rajapaksa. (Note: the relationship between Nissanka and the family of President Rajapaksa is not established.)” Blake further wrote.
Under the subheading “Further reports of harassment and intimidation” the ambassador wrote “There have been several other incidents of harassment and intimidation of journalists in recent days: — Another contributor to the Nation complained to the police that a white van was following her. When she confronted the occupants of the car, they began to question her about her work as a journalist.
Tamil journalist P. Devakumar, who worked for both Sirasa and MTV, was stabbed to death
On Thursday she reported to police that someone had slashed the throat of a rooster and left the carcass outside her office. A group of unidentified men in a jeep were surveilling her house. — The Free Media Movement issued a statement on May 31 that an unknown group had invaded the residence of the defense reporter of the Sinhala-language Divaina at 4 a.m. and threatened him. When he protested that he was a veteran and that his brother was missing in action against the Tamil Tigers, the group told him that regardless of who he was, reporting of matters related to defense was to stop immediately. — The Sri Lanka Press Institute reported that on May 27 armed men dressed in Army uniforms entered its offices and inquired about the identities of those working there. They refused to identify themselves but said they were with military intelligence. The Press Institute refused them access, or to provide such information. Military spokesman Nanayakkara later denied that the intruders could have been from the armed forces, stating that there was no authority for military intelligence to make such inquiries. — On May 28, Tamil journalist P. Devakumar, who worked for both Sirasa and MTV, was stabbed to death, along with a companion, on the way to his home near Jaffna. It appears unlikely, however, that this murder, one of several killings of journalists in Jaffna in the last two years, was closely related to the other recent cases in Colombo.”
Below we give the relevant part of the confidential cable;
Posts related to this cable;
Read More

Web censorship reaches new level: Five Tamil language web sites blocked

NfR - Net working for rights in Sri Lanka -Exile network for media and human rights in Sri Lanka
Press release/ 27 June 2012
LogoNfR Sri Lanka, a network of Sri Lankan journalists and human rights defenders condemns the blocking of five tamil language news websites which report on Sri Lanka. In a situation where print and electronic media is under severe self censorship, internet based media plays a critical role in providing information on Sri Lanka.
NfR sources in Sri Lanka have confirmed that five websites, namely,,, are not accessible through any of the Sri Lankan internet service providers. People in Sri Lanka can now visit those sites only trough proxy servers.
NfR believes that open discussion and freedom of information on issues that affect citizens is pivotal in the democratisation of post war Sri Lanka. NfR views this unhealthy development as a continuation of media censorship imposed by the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL). Although the GoSL has been accusing internet based media for unethical reporting the very same GoSL controlled media is well known for publishing politically motivated cooked up stories and many media monitoring reports has shown that state controlled media is the heavily biased in covering politically important issues.
In that context NfR views this ban as yet another politically motivated anti-democratic step towards creating a mind controlled society in Sri Lanka.
TamilNet, a popular news and opinion site on Tamil issues was the first site blocked by the GoSL. On June 19, 2007, on the orders of the GoSL all Internet Service Providers in Sri Lanka blocked the access to the TamilNet website. Since then GoSL has blocked dozens of news and opinion web sites reporting on Sri Lanka. Today major Sinhala language news and opinion websites operating from outside Sri Lanka, such as,, remain blocked.
In November 2011 the GoSL proclaimed that any website dealing with Sri Lankan affairs must register with the government or face legal action. At the same time number of websites was blocked by the GoSL. In May 2012 Supreme Court rejected the fundamental rights case filed against blocking of websites by press freedom watch dog, the Free Media Movement of Sri Lanka saying that there no basis to grant leave to proceed.
NfR calls on all media and democratic organizations to take note of this continuing media censorship in Sri Lanka and support and strengthen alternative Sri Lankan media, in defense of basic democratic rights of all people in Sri Lanka. At the same time NfR calls on internet based media in Sri Lanka to be ethical, balanced and fair in their reporting.
Steering Committee, NfR Sri Lanka
Steering committee : 
Kshama Ranawana ( Canada) 
Lionel Bopage ( Australia), 
Nadarasa Sarawanan (Norway),
Nadarajah Kuruparan(UK) 
Padmi Liyanage (Germany), 
Raveendran Pradeepan (France), 
Rudhramoorthy Cheran (Canada), 
Saman Wagaarachchi ( USA), 
Sunanda Deshapriya ( Switzerland)
C/O, 19447, Victory Blvd,#2, Reseda, CA 91335, USA,

Eurozone agrees on bank recapitalisation

29 June 2012 
Mr Rompuy hailed the deal as a “breakthrough”
EU leaders have agreed to use the eurozone’s planned bailout fund to directly support struggling banks, without adding to government debt.
After 13 hours of talks, they also agreed to set up a joint banking supervisory body for the eurozone.
Spain and Italy put pressure on Germany to allow the bailout fund to buy government debt in the markets - a measure to contain borrowing costs.
Eurozone leaders agreed to begin implementing the decisions by 9 July.
However, it could take until the end of the year before the new money becomes available.
Announcing the deal, EU Council President Herman Van Rompuy said it would break the “vicious circle” between banks and national governments.
The euro surged against the dollar in Asian trade after the news from Brussels. Stocks in Germany and London also rose sharply.
Financial control        Full Story»>
Gona–wardena’s bellowing worse than that of a bullock

(Lanka-e-News-28.June.2012, 11.55PM) Education Minister Bandula Gona–wardena said , if the Z score changes based on the calculations as per Supreme court (SC) decision , and thereby , if that student is deprived of a place in the University , that responsibility must be borne by the SC , and he will not hold himself responsible.

Gona wardena bellowed this answer when responding to questions asked by a journalist at a media discussion . When the journalists told him that all the students, parents and the entire country are blaming him on this , it is the duty of his to resign from his Education Ministry portfolio, Gona wardena without any sense of shame like a naked bullock in the street replied , the SC had not given such a decision that necessitates his tendering the resignation ; and therefore he would think of resigning only if he is wrong. But the question is , where on earth has there been a bull that can think and decide what is wrong ?

Gona wardena who was bombarded by questions from the media was so unnerved and discomposed that he must have thought why he untied himself from the Bullock cart ..A journalist asked whether the students are in the wrong when Gona wardena continued to blame the court and those who sought legal redress .

Meanwhile , at a UNP media briefing recently , the UNP Gen. secretary said both Ministers of education should resign forthwith for the egregious blunders they have committed in the field of children’s precious education.

The National freedom Front(NFF) , a Govt. ally , at a media briefing bitterly castigated the two Ministers ., and insisted that they must tender their resignations. Piyasiri Wijenaike of the NFF , said , because these two Ministers did not heed the criticisms leveled against them by the students and were indifferent , that the students had to seek court redress.
The Ministerial duo not only cheated the country, the people and the students, but even the President. Therefore the President must institute disciplinary action against them. 

There is a group of people in this country who stay for only seven days in a place after making a place where they can rest. They leave that place after seven days when garbage worms abound there . Now it is time for them to go because the garbage worms have started to swarm , Piyasiri Wijenaike observed .

NSA Menon in Sri Lanka for high-level talks

Rediff.comIssues like reconciliation with minority Tamils are expected to figure prominently in talks National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon will have with the Sri Lankan leadership during his ongoing visit in Colombo.

Menon, who arrived in Colombo by a special flight just after midnight on Thursday night, is scheduled to meet President Mahinda Rajapaksa [ Images ] and his younger brothers Basil Rajapaksa, Minister of Economic development; and Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, Defence Secretary, officials said.
The NSA, who had served in Colombo as India's [ Images ] High Commissioner, may also seek a meeting with main Tamil party TNA leader Rajavayothi Sampanthan, political sources said.
Menon's visit comes days after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [ Images ] met Rajapaksa on the margins of the Rio+20 Summit in Brazil [ Images ].
Although the Indian officials were tight-lipped about the purpose of the NSA's visit, Sri Lanka's [ Images ] commitment towards devolution in line with the 13th amendment to the Constitution is expected to figure at the high level-talks.
Sri Lankan officials on Thursday, however, denied speculation that Menon would press for de-escalation of the military presence in the war-ravaged north.

India has been urging the Rajapaksa regime to fully implement the 13th amendment as an urgent measure to achieve reconciliation with the Tamil minority.
Rajapaksa has been making varying statements on giving effect to the amendment. Indians are apparently unhappy that an action had failed to follow his words.
The Lankan government has been deferring the northern provincial polls despite calls from the global community.

Ahead of Menon's visit, the Lankan media had reported that he would raise concerns over the anti-Indian stance adopted by some Sri Lankan ministers, demilitarisation of the north and east and follow up action on the UNHRC resolution which India had backed against Sri Lanka.

Published by the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI)

By Sujeewa Amaranath and Wasantha Rupasinghe 
29 June 2012
Government-backed thugs gunned down two members of the opposition Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) at a political meeting on June 15. The murders are part of the ruthless, anti-democratic methods being used to stifle any opposition to the government’s imposition of austerity measures dictated by the International Monetary Fund.
A group of eight to ten thugs arrived on motorbikes, armed with T-56 weapons, and opened fire on a JVP campaign meeting at Katuwana in the Hambantota district. The gunmen killed Edirimannage Malani, 51, a mother of three, and Nimantha Heshan, 18, a carpenter, and injured more than a dozen others.
A JVP provincial councillor was addressing the local “pocket meeting” of about 80 people as part of the party’s 45-day national campaign against government measures that have led to sharply rising prices for essential items including food. It is a desperate attempt on the JVP’s part to boost its sagging base of support.
The JVP supported the election of President Mahinda Rajapakse in November 2005 and had previously been part of a ruling coalition with his Sri Lanka Freedom Party. The party, however, went into opposition and has since split twice—a group broke away and joined the Rajapakse government in 2008, and this year another faction split to form the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP).
Neither the JVP nor any of its breakaways represent socialism, but are based on a combination of Sinhala extremism and empty populist promises. All of them backed Rajapakse’s ruthless communal war against the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Both the JVP and FSP are seeking to exploit the widespread popular anger over deteriorating living standards and the government’s deepening attacks on democratic rights.
The Rajapakse government, however, cannot tolerate any, even limited, political opposition. The attack in Katuwana is particularly significant as it is President Rajapakse’s hometown.
As well as firing at the crowd, the thugs also severely beat up those in attendance, and destroyed their vehicles and property. The attack continued for almost half an hour, but the police did not intervene even though the local police station was less than three kilometres away. The police ignored phone calls from wounded victims and did not arrive on the scene for more than two hours.
The delay points to police connivance in the violence, allowing the criminals plenty of time to escape. The area is a designated High Security Zone in the president’s home town and is always heavily guarded by police, Special Task Force (STF) and army units. No one could flee the scene of such a crime without the backing of the security forces.
Within hours of the shootings, before any investigation had begun, the director general of the Media Centre for National Security, Lakshman Hulugalle, issued a statement asserting that the incident resulted from a clash between two JVP factions. This claim was flatly rejected by the JVP and the FSP. In all previous such attacks, the government has made similar claims, in a crude attempt to disguise its role.
Despite eyewitnesses identifying some of the gunmen, the inspector general of police told a press conference that he needed more evidence to make any arrests. When a journalist pointed out that one of those involved was the subject of several arrest warrants for previous crimes, he cynically asked the public to provide information on where the wanted man was hiding.
Fearing protests at the victims’ funerals, the police obtained a court order banning marches, the hoisting of black flags, the distribution of leaflets, the pasting of posters and the display of banners in the area. Undeterred, thousands of people attended the funerals, held amid tight security.
Widespread anger over the cold-blooded attack on a political gathering made it impossible for the police to ignore the crime. Normally in case of crimes by government-sponsored thugs, the police do nothing and simply declare that “investigations continue”.
This time, however, the police were forced to produce the main suspect, Gamage Amarasiri, who surrendered to the Thangalla High Court on June 19. According to media reports, Amarasiri is an underworld gangster with close political connections to some local government members.
In court, Judge Chandrasena Rajapaksha said more than 100 arrest warrants had been issued against Amarasiri, “but police never arrested him.” The mainstream media reported this as a “shocking disclosure”. Actually, this record illustrates how the so-called law enforcement agencies routinely protect the pro-government thugs.
The apparent use of such gangsters is just part of the police state apparatus built up by the government, with the backing of all the establishment parties, including the JVP, during the civil war against the LTTE. Now the government is using similar measures not only against opposition parties, but against working class opposition to its austerity program.
Last June, when Free Trade Zone (FTZ) workers agitated against the government’s desperate move to appropriate the Employees Provident Fund by investing it in the stock market, the police opened fire, killing Roshen Chanaka, a young FTZ worker, and injuring several others. No investigation was conducted to punish those responsible for the police violence.
In January this year, when the fishermen protested in Chilaw, on the west coast, against the government’s fuel price hikes, police shot dead a fisherman and maimed several others. These killings are just the sharpest expression of the government’s anti-democratic methods.
The brutal killing of JVP supporters at a public meeting must be condemned. But the JVP itself bears political responsibility for helping Rajapakse into power and supporting the build-up of the state apparatus and its crimes during Rajapakse’s renewed war against the LTTE that ended in May 2009.
The leader of the pseudo-radical Nava Sama Samaja Party, Wickramabahu Karunaratne, took part in a press conference with the FSP over the incident. He boasted to the audience that he was “forcing the government to bring the killers to courts.” Such claims serve only to foster the dangerous illusion that the Rajapakse government, which is implicated in the attack, can be pressured into respecting democratic rights.
The Socialist Equality Party warns workers, youth and the rural poor that their basic rights can be defended only in the struggle to oust this government, and overturn capitalist rule altogether. Even if, for tactical political reasons, the hired hands who executed the latest killings are brought before courts, the government’s underlying course will not alter, and its austerity agenda will require ever-more violent and anti-democratic methods of rule.

Sri Lanka meets all June-end IMF loan targets-cbank

COLOMBO, June 29 | Fri Jun 29, 2012 8:08am EDT
Reuters(Reuters) - Sri Lanka has met all June-end targets set by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for the last tranche of a $2.6 billion loan, Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal said on Friday.
"We have met all the targets. Net domestic financing, net internal reserves, and the reserve money targets have been met," Cabraal told Reuters.
After concluding a two-week assessment, an IMF mission on June 15 said Sri Lanka's policy measures including policy rate hikes, flexible exchange rate, and credit restrictions have been yielding results.
If satisfied, the global lender will disburse the last tranche of the $2.6 billion loan -- around $420 million -- by mid July.
Currency dealers in the last two weeks said the rupee currency, which hit a fresh record low on Thursday, has been under severe pressure as the central bank continuously bought dollars to meet the net internal reserves target.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

UN Stonewalls As Sri Lanka Alleged War Criminal Silva Skips Advisory Meeting

Inner City PressBy Matthew Russell Lee
UNITED NATIONS, June 28 -- Since UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon accepted an alleged war criminal onto his Senior Advisory Group on Peacekeeping Operations, his Secretariat has tried to make it difficult or impossible to cover the process.
  Inner City Press went to the SAG meeting at 380 Madison Avenue to see if Sri Lankan general Shavendra Silva, who is depicted in Ban's own report on Sri Lanka as engaged in war crimes, attended. He did, but called UN Security who ordered Inner City Press to leave the area by the elevators in a UN rented building.
  Then the meetings moved to another UN rented building, where Inner City Press was not allowed upstairs. The Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit had said ask them in advance and they would facilitate coverage. 
  But then they said it is not a UN meeting, and did not help. For the proposition that Inner City Press, even with just a pad and pen, could not stand outside the meeting, MALU cited its meeting with, and tacit agreement by, other correspondents.
  Still, for the SAG meetings of June 27 and June 28, Inner City Press has ascertained even from the sidewalk that Silva did not attend. Many of the SAG have said this is the right outcome, the alleged war criminal not coming. But Sri Lanka's Mission to the UN says it's only that "the General is out of town."
  So at the June 28 UN noon briefing, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky to confirm that Silva did not attend, and to state why. Nesirky said "I don't have any comment on that," saying that "evidently you spoke with the Sri Lankans." Video here, from Minute 13:18.
  Inner City Press followed up that Ban appointed SAG chairperson Frechette, who says she has no spokesperson, so the question was for Nesirky. (Top Peacekeeper Herve Ladsous had explitictly refused to answer Inner City Press questions, first about Silva as adviser, and now about any topic at all).
  Nesirky repeated that he had no comment, adding as a way of ending the exchange that if he got any information he would provide it. 
  But it is easy: Ban appointed Frechette to chair his Senior Advisory Group on Peacekeeping Operations. Did the alleged war criminal Ban accepted on the SAG attend or not, and if not, why not? Watch this site.

Sri Lanka suspends rice exports amid drought

Thu Jun 28, 2012
* Rice exports banned until March harvest

* An exception to be made for small amount of export-targeted varieties

(Reuters) - Sri Lanka banned rice exports on Thursday until its harvest season next March aiming to stabilise local prices as its major rice-producing area struggles with a prolonged drought.

Rice is the staple food in the island nation and any price increase could accelerate the $59 billion economy's inflation.

Its subgroup, cereals and bread, accounts for 7.9 percent of the total consumption basket used to compile inflation.

The country's major rice-producing areas are experiencing severe drought which could hit production in the second half of this year.

The Ministry of Finance and Planning on its website said the decision was taken to ensure adequate rice stocks at affordable prices until next March.

"The export ban of paddy and available rice will ensure more than required rice supply for the balance period at stable prices at (the) current level, stabilizing the cost of living as well," the Ministry said.

"This ban will ensure not only food security is guaranteed but also that the country will not require to import rice by spending foreign exchange."

Sri Lanka has implemented tough monetary and fiscal policy measures since February to reduce its trade deficit and avoid a balance-of-payments crisis.

The country produced 3.9 million metric tonnes of paddy last year and the Finance Ministry said the country has a rice stock of 1.26 million metric tonnes, including the private sector.

It exports around 10,000 tonnes of rice annually to countries in the Middle East where most of its expatriates work as well as to Kenya.

One exception to the ban will be a small amount of rice processed exclusively for export markets which will not be affected, the ministry said. (Reporting by Shihar Aneez; editing by Jason Neely)