Category Archives: foreign policy

High Tea at Canberra as Lanka’s Tea Trade stimulates the World Palate

News Item from High Commission — Canberra, 7 July 2017

The Global Ceylon Tea Party celebrating the 150th anniversary of Ceylon Tea got underway on 6th July with the first party in the Pacific region being held in Canberra at the  Sri Lanka High Commission. Specially identified Tea businesses, Tea traders, travel writers & firms and selected academics, officials, diplomats were invited to this unique event.

The programme commenced with a video presentation on the symbol of quality that is Ceylon Tea, and High Commissioner S. Skandakumar addressing the gathering with an overview of the long traditions to ensure the quality and standard that are synonymous with Sri Lanka’s tea industry which has put the country on the world map.

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Tactical Push ‘n Shove on Sea and along Air in Asylum-Seeker ‘War’

Simon Benson,  in The Australian 29 June 2017, where the title is  “People-smugglers downsize to beat barricade”

Border protection officers intercept a people-smuggling boat, whose occupants were sent back to Sri Lanka on Monday
Border authorities are facing a new wave of people-smuggling operations described as “micro-ventures” designed to penetrate the naval barricade, with smaller, less detectable teams using more perilous sea routes.In what Border Protection ­officials claim is the emergence of a new model designed to test the Turnbull government’s resolve, four of the eight intercepts at sea since February last year have carried fewer than eight people.

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In Appreciation of Saman Kelegama

Shavindra Fernando. in Daily News, 29 June 2017. with the title reading as Last conversation with a beautiful mind”

My last conversation with Dr Saman Kelegama was about Oxford. It was a place that he was so fond of, and he always remembered his Oxford days with gratitude. He read Industrial Economics for his doctorate at St Catherine’s College. He was a St Cat’s man. Some of us Reuter Fellows, the first reporters to be sent to Oxford in the late 1980s got to know him at St Giles, where we were housed at Queen Elizabeth House.

The press was focused on Sri Lanka at that time, though the Sri Lanka fraternity was tiny as always. The Indian army had been asked to leave by the Sri Lanka government under siege by the JVP Marxist rebels. Kelegama’s views were of interest to us. He was a Sri Lankan who had studied Mathematics in India and was seen as someone who had insight into the psyche of both countries. Continue reading

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Travails at the Indo-Pak Border

Muralidhar Reddy, courtesy of  gfiles, June Issue, Vol 11 where the chosen title of this article is “Border Woes”

I was The Hindu Pakistan correspondent from July 5, 2000, to May 25, 2006. It was on May 25, 2006, that I took a flight from Islamabad to Lahore, returning to India at the end of nearly six-year-long meaningful, intense and a truly historic phase in the history of ever turbulent, religious and secular life in Pakistan.
The period was chaotic and terrific for Pakistan after the United States of America made a determination that it was the forces commanded by Osama Bin Laden, supposedly operating from Tora Bora caves inside Afghanistan, that were responsible for bringing down the twin towers in New York. Predictably, Washington stuck a military death blow to the Taliban and the faithful of Bin Laden.

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China’s Transcontinental Pathways … and Indian Ocean Issues for Lanka

Philips and Kurukulasuriya … and other items

I > Rajan Philips: “One Belt-One Road from China, but no Bridge to India: Lanka’s Development Dilemmas,” Island, 20 May 2017

Even as he bade farewell to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the end of his Vesak visit, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe was all but ready to take flight to China to attend the economic summit of the 21st Century. This was Beijing’s big splash on the world economic map, and one that India chose not to officially attend. Japan was another boycotter. A number of Indian business and think-tank figures went to Beijing as ‘unofficial delegates’, and they were critical of their government’s decision not to send at least an official delegation. 130 countries marked their presence at the two-day (May 14-15) event in Beijing, including 29 state and government leaders. Even the Trump Administration, despite its spiralling turmoil in Washington, was represented in Beijing.

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Aussie Duplicity: A Cartographic Veil for Kim Jong Un and His Nukes

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April 28, 2017 · 9:07 am

Amnesty International Agitation: Bowling Googlies for the LTTE?

Shamindra  Ferdinando, in The Island, 19 April 2017, where the title reads “AI’s longstanding ‘alliance’ with the LTTE”

Publicly declining to testify before the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) that has been tasked by the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa to inquire into war crimes allegations, London headquartered Amnesty International (AI) joined the International Crisis Group (ICG) and the Human Rights Watch (HRW) to flay Sri Lanka. The LLRC commenced sittings in Aug 2010.  In a joint statement issued on Oct 14, 2010, the three organizations called for a genuine, credible effort to pursue political reconciliation and accountability in Sri Lanka. Declaring that the LLRC had failed to meet what they called minimum international standards for commissions of inquiry, they said: “There is little to be gained by appearing before such a fundamentally flawed commission.”  “Accountability for war crimes in Sri Lanka demands an independent international investigation.”

 Francis Boyle Yolande Foster & ??

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