Category Archives: Rajapaksa regime

Gamage reveals USA’s Strategic Goals in the Indian Ocean and Sri Lanka’s Place via 2007 Robert Blake Cables

Daya Gamage in Asian Tribune, 12 February 2019, where the title is

The Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA) signed between the Governments of Sri Lanka and the United States in March 2007 which allowed both countries to transfer and exchange logistics supplies, support, and re-fueling services clearly benefitted the United States in its military operation in the Asia-Pacific region – specifically US Pacific Command (USPACOM) which is now US Indo-Pacific Command (USINDOPACOM) – but left Sri Lanka with absolutely no benefit from the U.S. at a time Sri Lanka was in an intense military battle with the separatist Tamil Tigers.

 Sri Lanka’s Defense Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa (2005-2015) and U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka (2006-2009) Robert Blake in a conversation in Colombo during the time the 2007 military agreement was signed Continue reading

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The House of Lords Debate on Sri Lanka and the UNHCR resolution

FROM An Eye in the Ceiling: “Sri Lanka’s UNHRC Resolution”

Lord Naseby

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, following the resignation of the government of the United States from the United Nations Human Rights Council where they co-sponsored with the United Kingdom Resolution 30/1 in 2015 and Resolution 34/1 in 2017, in regard to Sri Lanka, and given the progress made towards many aspects highlighted in the resolutions, what assessment they have made of whether to annul or withdraw those resolutions.

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Simple Blundering Simon: Gideon Haigh’s Venture into Sri Lankan Political History

Michael Roberts

Gideon Haigh is an incisive and formidable researcher. He is a whiz-kid on the financial underpinnings of the business of cricket in India and even more adept in analysing the processes surrounding cricket matches in Australia, India and beyond. But in his recent excursion into Sri Lankan politics, he has dived into a morass he is not familiar with.[1]

He has seized on the standard interpretations in the western media world and, willy-nilly, become an agent of US-UK-EU imperialist designs. Take note of this summary survey on his part.”In noting that 2018 was a bad year for Sri Lankan cricket, we should note also that it was a very bad year for Sri Lankan democracy, rocked by President Maithripala Sirisena’s attempts to install his notoriously authoritarian predecessor Mahinda Rajapaksa as prime minister over the head of incumbent Ranil Wickremesinghe……. by the estimate of The Economist Intelligence Unit, in no country did the cause of democracy retreat so far as Sri Lanka last year.”

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Pathos. Comedy. Revelation. President Sirisena’s Sermon to a ‘Captive’ Cabinet

Michael Roberts

Having been forced to accept an UNP government by a Supreme Court decision in December 2018 after he had attempted to ditch them in a coup from above in late October, President Maithripala Sirisena utilised the opportunity provided by the swearing in of a new UNP Cabinet under Ranil Wickremasinghe on 16th December 2018 to deliver a sermon to a captive audience of ‘enemies’ who were, ironically, about to enjoy the fruits of victory and destined to assume state power.[1] Sirisena’s Address was delivered in Sinhala and is marked by pathos, recrimination and selective biographical tales from the past that illuminate aspects of Sri Lankan politics.

 

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Prejudiced and Infantile Readings of Sri Lanka at Chatham House in 2019

Introductory Note from Michael Roberts

 The public event organised by Chatham House to discuss recent events in Sri Lanka on 17th January was chaired by a University Lecturer at University College London whose specialty is “human rights,” rather than any one of the Sri Lankan specialists teaching at British Universities (for e.g. Rajesh Venugopal, Asanga Welikala, Sujit Suvisundaram, Zoltan Beidermann and Alan Strathern).  The combination of ignorance, distortion and prejudice that guided the organisation and direction of the debate was exposed in the opening lines of this Chairperson, one Kate Cronin-Furman. “[We are meeting today some ten years after the “final push” of the Sri Lankan Army in a war that ended in May 2009 – “a final phase where the UN estimates said that more than 40,000 civilians were killed by that military [action].”

aaa -kate cronin

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The Divided Island debated by Chatham House in London, 17th January 2018

Chatham House Public Notice: “A Divided Island: Sri Lanka’s Constitutional Crisis” … 17 January 2019  1:00pm to 2:00pm ……………….Chatham House | 10 St James’s Square | London | SW1Y 4LE ….. NB: “Chatham House” is The Royal Institute of International Affairs

Overview: …… A decade since the end of Sri Lanka’s 25-year civil war, the country has recently been plunged back into turmoil. A constitutional crisis created by the sacking of Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe by President Maithripala Sirisena, and a plan to replace him with former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, paralysed the country’s legislative and executive branches as both Wickramasinghe and Rajapaksa claimed the office of prime minister. Against this background, the panel considers how Sri Lanka’s opaque domestic politics is reflected by the government’s slow progress toward its pledges to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to address accountability and political reconciliation emerging from the country’s 26-year civil war. Looking forward, will Wickramasinghe pursue reconciliation, and accountability for past abuses? And what will Rajapaksa’s disputed return to frontline politics mean for a nation still reconciling the violence of its recent history?

LONDON, UK – Apr 19, 2017: Metropolitan police officers on duty at 10 St James’s Square The Royal Institute of International Affairs Chatham House

 

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A Rajapaksa Cloud looming over Lanka’s Democracy

Sam Samarasinghe aka SWR de A Samarasinghe of Tulane University, in Sunday Observer, 27 January 2019, where the title isGotabaya’s alternative vision challenges Sri Lanka’s democracy” …. with highlighting emphases in different colurs imposed by The Editor, Thuppahi

Gotabaya Rajapaksa recently announced at a meeting of Viyath Maga, of which he is president that he was ready to contest the next Presidential Election that must be held this year.In his speech to the assembled professionals and business people he asserted that Sri Lanka must have national unity (jaathikathwaya) and rejected sectarian division (jaathiwaadaya). The Viyath Maga website makes all the right statements on good governance such as “steer the country in the correct path with accountability; inculcate democratic values…”, and so on. Rajapaksa also stressed the importance of solving ‘social problems’ focusing on poverty reduction. All of the above are desirable political goals for the country. They are also not new. The UNF in 2015, and earlier leaders, made similar promises that were largely ignored once in office.

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