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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 75

Monthly archive

Rohan De Silva

Rohan de Silva Performs at New York's Avery Fisher Hall

Rohan De SilvaThe internationally-renowned Sri Lankan pianist Rohan De Silva collaborated once again with violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman in a superlative performance at New York's Avery Fisher Hall last week. Both performers, who had earlier appeared at the White House East Room during Queen Elizabeth's visit to Washington DC last month, were given standing ovations by the New York audience. De Silva’s partnerships with other violin virtuosos Cho-Liang Lin, Midori, Joshua Bell, Benny Kim, Kyoko Takezawa, Vadim Repin, Gil Shaham, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, and Julian Rachlin have led to highly acclaimed performances at recital venues all over the world.

Sri Lanka Jointly Celebrates Vesak at the United Nations

Sri Lanka, together with several other UN Member States participated in the annual International Day of Vesak at the UN Headquarters in New York on Tuesday. The Ceremony consisted of religious observances from the Vajrayana and Theravada sects and colourful cultural performances from Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Laos, Mongolia, Myanmar, Thailand and Sri Lanka, in veneration of the Buddha. The Theravada observances were led by the Chief Priest of the New York Buddhist Vihara, Ven. Kurunegoda Piyatissa Thero. In a message, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recalled the timelessness of the principles of compassion, understanding and peace preached by Gautama the Buddha more than 2500 years ago.

Sri Lanka inflation shoots up by a massive three percentage points

Stalling a three month long fall in prices, Sri Lanka's inflation has reversed and shot up by a massive three percentage points in May 2007, the Government Statistics Department (GSD) said today. According to the GSD the Colombo Consumer Price Index increased by 151 index points in April to a high of 5176. The "seasonally adjusted moving average" remained the same at 17.4 percent, indicating that "it may have peaked." The Price Index increase has resulted despite the Central Bank of Sri Lanka pushing for lower inflation by suspending money printing (to bridge the budget deficit)temporarily.

German Alumni Association of Sri Lanka inaugurated

Recently 65 life members have formed an Alumni Association of Sri Lanka with the aim to promote and foster good relations and cultural ties between Sri Lanka and Germany. Sri Lankans qualified in the Federal Republic of Germany formed alumni association at the German Cultural Institute, Colombo. Mr Richard Lang, the Director of the Goethe Institute, the Counselor Mr Wolfgang Erdmanndoerfer of the German Embassy in Sri Lanka and Dr J A J Perera (president of the interim body) were present at the inaugural session.

Lothas look Wokha, Longsa as fatherly figures: Dr Lotha

Oken Jeet Sandham – Asian Tribune

State Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr TM Lotha said the recent incident at Wokha Town where mob went berserk forcing the district administration to impose curfew in the town was not an issue either with the Longsa Village or Wokha Village. He explained that the incident that happened on the fateful day of May 24 last was due to the traffic rule violation by one Ajanbemo. "It is not an issue between the Longsa Village and the Wokha Village," he stated.

Sri Lanka: Foreign donors pledge to uphold international standards in aid delivery

Foreign aid donors and international agencies in Sri Lanka yesterday released a set of “guiding principles” and pledged to work with transparency and impartiality to provide humanitarian assistance. The commitment comes amidst heightened criticism of the humanitarian community by some government authorities and local media. The USA, the UK, Japan, Germany, the European Union and the UN were among 14 bilateral donors who recently signed the 10-point memorandum setting out internationally accepted standards for delivering aid.

U.N. Peacekeeping Budget Continues to Soar Sky High

By Thalif Deen - Inter Press Service

The United Nations is commemorating its annual "International Day of U.N. Peacekeepers" to mixed reviews, its successes being tainted by increasing accusations of sexual abuse and misconduct by its troops, and more recently, charges of illegal arms trafficking in return for gold in resource-rich Democratic Republic of Congo. As the cost of peacekeeping has hit a staggering 5.4 billion dollars each both in 2006-2007 and 2007-2008, the current budget is projected to rise to 6.7 billion to 7 billion dollars when the United Nations decides to deploy new peacekeeping missions to Darfur, Chad and the Central African Republic later this year.

World Academy Fellow Patrick Mendis' Book Signing Helps Sri Lanka's Children Hospital

Sunil C.Perera - Asian Tribune

The Embassy of Sri Lanka held a book signing reception for Dr. Patrick Mendis, a fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science. He titled his third book, "Globalization: The Human Side of Globalization as If the Washington Consensus Mattered." A portion of the proceeds of the book sales is donated to the rebuilding of the pediatric hospital in Matara, which had been severely damaged by the tsunami. The Bush-Clinton Tsunami Fund has already donated US$ 400,000 for the children hospital.

Injections to check population boom

By R.K. Bhatnagar - Syndicate Features

What is wrong with our population control programme? May be it is proper to ask what is happening to the family planning campaign? It was nearly 54 years back, in 1952 to be precise, India launched a national programme for fertility regulation for reducing birth rate and to stabilise the population growth. Much water has flown under the bridge since then. Family Planning (FP) became a political ‘victim’. And FP has become FWP- Family Welfare Programme. The Census puts India’s population at 1027 million, nearly 17 per cent of world population. Government claims population growth rate has dropped to 1.93 from 2.20 three decades back. Has it really? There is no reality check and no ‘independent’ audit. Any how overcrowding everywhere contributes to scepticism whether we like it or not even as FP graduated to monthly injectable contraceptive stage.

Bush decrees new sanctions against Sudan

President Bush Tuesday announced that his administration is imposing a fresh set of economic sanctions on Sudan, claiming the measures are designed to pressure the government in Khartoum to halt the bloodshed in the country’s western-most province of Darfur. The sanctions target 30 Sudanese government-owned companies along with a company that Washington accuses of trafficking arms to Sudan, barring them from any financial relations with the US and making it a crime for American corporations or individuals to do business with them.


India against Lanka buying arms from Pakistan and China : M K Naryanan tells Colombo to shop in Delhi

By M Rama Rao in New Delhi

NarayananIn an uncharacteristic blunt speak, the National Security Advisor M K Narayanan Thursday has put Sri Lanka on notice saying that Delhi will not like Colombo going to Beijing or Islamabad for arms to fight LTTE. “Sri Lanka should come to India and we will give whatever we think is necessary”. This warning is a response to Sri Lanka moves to tap China and Pakistan for arms in a big way to take on the rebel Tamil Tigers. Mr Narayanan ruled out any offensive weapons and promised only weapons of defensive capability.