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0712 flag pakistanSectarian violence in Karachi is just another chapter in Pakistan’s long history of violence against minorities, has afflicted Pakistan virtually from its moment of birth...


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SRI LANKA: News Briefs

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TNA agrees to accept a unitary state in Sri Lanka: Tamil National Alliance (TNA) on July 15 agreed to denounce separatism and accept a united Sri Lanka for all communities. The TNA agreed to submit an affidavit to the Supreme Court, stating that Sri Lanka is a unitary State. Lawyers appearing for the Secretary of TNA and its main constituent Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (ITAK), Parliamentarian Mavai Senathirajah and leader of TNA R. Sampanthan agreed to submit the affidavit to the Supreme Court that Sri Lanka is a unitary state when six petitions filed by representatives of Sinhala majority nationalist organizations were taken for hearing. Colombo Page, July 18, 2014.

President appoints international expert panel to advise Missing Persons Commission: President Mahinda Rajapaksa has broadened the scope of the mandate of the Presidential Commission to Investigate into Complaints Regarding Missing Persons and appointed a three-member international panel of experts to advise the Commission. A Government press statement said that the enhanced mandate of the Commission, issued by a Presidential Proclamation and published under Gazette Notification 1871/18 dated July 15, seeks to, inter alia, inquire into and report on several matters contained under paragraph 4.359 of the Report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), which the Commission has deemed as requiring further inquiry. Colombo Page, July 18, 2014.

NGOs gave weapons to terrorists, says PM D M Jayaratna: Prime Minister (PM) D. M. Jayaratna said in Parliament on July 11 that it is a well known fact that several Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) have exceeded their remits even to the extent of procuring weapons for terrorists. He made these observations in Parliament in response to a special statement made by Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe under Standing Orders querying if the letter dated July 1, 2014, issued by the National Secretariat to NGOs, was to control the NGOs. Daily News, July 12, 2014.

Sri Lankan Government reiterates its stance on UN investigation: The Sri Lankan Government on July 3 reiterated its stance on the United Nations (UN) investigation that it is not ready to accept an investigation mandated by the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC). Government spokesman and Media Minister, Keheliya Rambukwella said Sri Lanka is ready to hold discussions at acceptable conditions but the Government which has been ascended to power by the people is not ready to be made equal with a terrorist organization. The Government has refused to cooperate with the UNHRC mandated international investigation despite the calls from the UN, US, United Kingdom and European Union to do so. Colombo Page, July 4, 2014.

Investigations show that jihadist groups targeting India were using Sri Lanka as a transit point, says report: Sri Lanka banned visas on arrival for Pakistanis after investigations showed that jihadist groups targeting India were using Sri Lanka as a transit point. A bomb blast in a train stationed at Chennai Railway Station train on May 1 revealed new plots against India by Pakistan-based jihadist groups using Sri Lanka and Maldives as transit points.

Meanwhile, Sri Lankan Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa on July 1 ruled out any possibility that its soil could be used for terror attacks against India, after the recent discovery of an alleged terrorist plot to attack foreign missions in south India. He said, "The Indian intelligence agencies have told me that there is a possibility of Islamic terrorism being based in Sri Lanka to act against India. However, we investigated these concerns and found that there is no merit in these concerns or claims.". Times of India, June 30, 2014; Network 24, July 2, 2014.

[Source: SATP]

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