WorldTOKYO (Reuters) - Japan’s Emperor Akihito is likely to abdicate at the end of March 2019 and Crown Prince Naruhito is expected to ascend the throne in April, the first abdication by a Japanese monarch in nearly two centuries, the Asahi newspaper reported on Friday. The government is in the final stage of formalizing the schedule, said the Asahi, citing several sources. In June, Japan’s parliament passed a law allowing Emperor Akihito to abdicate and the government needs to hammer out the details including the timing. Japan’s top government spokesman denied the Asahi report. Asahi said the expected 2019 abdication schedule would minimize the impact on people in changing to a new imperial reign from the current Heisei Era, which started in 1989 after the death of Akihito’s father Hirohito, according to the Asahi.
October 20, 2017 11:26 UTC
NewsA General Amnesty which will be effective from October 23 to November 15 is to be offered to Army absentees enabling them to receive legal discharge from the Army, Defence Ministry said. According to the Army, this opportunity offered to Army deserters, coinciding with the 68th Army anniversary, will enable them to report to their respective Regimental Headquarters and receive legal discharge. However, absentees in the Sri Lanka Army Medical Corps would not receive discharge under this amnesty. The Defence Ministry had offered two General Amnesty periods last year (2016) for tri forces deserters to seek legal discharge. The media briefing was attended by senior military officers including Director General, Personnel Administration, Major General Sudath Perera and Military Spokesman and Director General, Directorate of Media at Army Headquarters, Major General Roshan Seneviratne.
October 20, 2017 10:07 UTC
NewsTransport Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva warned of stern action against Railway Department unions today saying commuters were being inconvenienced by their actions. The Minister said in Parliament said that the previous time the railway unions were on strike, people were on the verge of attacking them. The Minister said that he would be compelled to take sterner action against the strikers as the government could not allow commuters to suffer because of disruption of train services.
October 20, 2017 09:45 UTC
opinionPollution has been linked to nine million deaths worldwide in 2015, a report in The Lancet has found. Almost all of these deaths occurred in low- and middle-income countries, where pollution could account for up to a quarter of deaths. Air pollution had the biggest impact, accounting for two-thirds of deaths from pollution. Most of these deaths were caused by non-infectious diseases linked to pollution, such as heart disease, stroke and lung cancer. The next largest risk factor, water pollution, accounted for 1.8 million deaths, while pollution in the workplace was linked to 800,000 deaths globally.
October 20, 2017 09:22 UTC
For years, the growth of the Economy of Sri Lanka was heavily reliant on huge public investments in infrastructure. Our traditional approaches to debt management will have to change to cope with new risks and structural and regulatory changes. Under the medium – term debt management strategy, the detailed strategies of government borrowings will be known in advance to the domestic and foreign debt portfolios. The present situation in the private sector on maternity benefits and access to tertiary and vocational education facilities will be improved. This is an effort to make Sri Lanka again, the economy and trade hub of the Indian Ocean.
October 20, 2017 09:00 UTC
NewsThe governments of Sri Lanka and the United States launched the YouLead! Ambassador Atul Keshap and Minister Chandima Weerakkody joined for the inauguration ceremony at the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce in Colombo. program, and International Executive Service Corps (IESC) will implement the program. IESC is an organization that has worked with hundreds of private enterprises in Sri Lanka since 1965. Under YouLead!, IESC will partner with the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, the American Chamber of Commerce, Arizona State University, Global Communities, Skills for Life, and Verité Research.
October 20, 2017 08:26 UTC
WorldBEIJING (Reuters) - China has summoned a British official in Beijing and lodged “stern representations” about recent comments from London expressing concern about a British rights activist being denied entry to Hong Kong, it said on Friday. He was denied entry to Hong Kong on Oct. 11. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang reiterated that Hong Kong is part of China, and the central government handles Hong Kong’s foreign affairs and Beijing and Hong Kong decide who to let in or not as a matter of Chinese sovereignty. “I must to stress here that Hong Kong matters are purely an internal affair of China‘s. Last week, British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said London needed an explanation from Hong Kong and Beijing about the treatment of Rogers.
October 20, 2017 08:15 UTC
NewsA 25 year old tree located in the Gas Works street in Pettah, Colombo collapsed early today morning causing damage to a small lorry, Police said. Police said the tree collapsed around 2.30 a.m., but no persons were hurt. Wasantha Gunasena, a person aware of the background of the tree said that the particular tree was planted in 1992 under a tree planting campaign by former President Ranasinghe Premadasa. 'The tree provided shelter to many including the vendors who sold their items under the tree', he said. Pix and text by Amila Pramodha Gamage
October 20, 2017 07:30 UTC
NewsHuman Rights Watch (HRW) has made a submission to the 77th Working Group of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) focusing on Sri Lanka's use of educational facilities for military purposes during the war. The submission relates to Articles 28 and 38 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and focuses on the protection of students, teachers, and schools during armed conflict. With the end of the war, in 2010, the CRC called upon Sri Lanka to immediately discontinue military occupation and use of the schools and strictly ensure compliance with humanitarian law and the principle of distinction and to cease utilizing the primary section of V/Tamil MV school and the Omanthai Central College in Vavuniya and ensure that school infrastructures damaged as a result of military occupation are promptly and fully restored. While HRW also asks the CRC to congratulate Sri Lanka on its attendance at the Buenos Aires Safe Schools Conference in March 2017 it called upon the government of Sri Lanka to endorse the Safe Schools Declaration, and take concrete measures to deter the military use of schools. Read the full statement
October 20, 2017 07:07 UTC
NewsThe government is to take a final decision on the issue of South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) by next week, President Maithripala Sirisena said. Speaking at Annual Convocation of the Aquinas University College yesterday, President said that although the Government had taken many steps to resolve the SAITM issue during the past period, various ideas were presented regarding those solutions. However, President Sirisena said that he thought that the final decision, which will be announced by the Government next week, will be sufficient for many people who were against the SAITM including the students protesting against the medical institution. This was the 8th graduation of the Aquinas University College, where graduates were awarded with degrees of Bachelor of Science in Psychology & Counselling (B.Sc. The Chancellor of the Aquinas University College, Archbishop of Colombo His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith, Rectors including the Vice Chancellor Rev.
October 20, 2017 06:11 UTC
NewsAnother suspect allegedly involved in the hacking and theft from the Far Eastern International Bank in Taiwan has surrendered to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) along with Rs 3 million of the funds that were stolen. The suspect turned himself over to the CID last night. He is the fourth person to be arrested in connection with the crime. Earlier, former Litro Gas Chairman Shalila Moonesinghe and another individual, J.C. Nammuni, were arrested by the CID after USD 1.1 million allegedly stolen from the bank by hackers was found in a personal bank account of Mr Moonesinghe in Sri Lanka. One of Mr Moonesinghe.s relatives, Chulapala De Silva was also arrested later for alleged involvement in the theft.
October 20, 2017 06:00 UTC
Sisira Kumara gave Sri Lanka much to be proud of when he built a comfortable lead of 4 Up at the halfway mark after 18 holes in an epic 36 hole final. The 16th was halved and Dhruv squared the match to go down the final 36th hole with Sisira under pressure. Sisira Kumara and Dhruv had excellent drives to set up the finale. Sisira was just off the green and Dhruv cast his second shot in to the right hand greenside bunker. Dhruv’s brilliant bunker shot under pressure sealed the match with another Birdie while Sisira Kumara was unable to 2 putt and let slip the Championship Cup with it.
October 20, 2017 05:03 UTC
The government is to take a final decision on the issue of South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) by next week, President M... Features & AnalysisMahatma Gandhi Oration to be delivered by Nirupama RaoSri Lanka India Society in association with the Indian Cultural Centre, in Colombo and Bandaranaike Centre...CentreStage Productions gearing up for 'Rag - The Musical'‘Rag - The Musical’ will take to the stage from November 2-5 at the Lionel Wendt Theatre...Pakistan Alumni Society of Sri Lanka launchedPakistan’s Foreign Secretary Ms. Tehmina Janjua on an official visit to the country recently launched the Pakis...Loving Vincent : Feature film made entirely of oil paintings“I saw 50 or 60 painters painting, and someone told me: ‘Oh it’s you! I’ve been painting you ...
October 20, 2017 04:54 UTC
NewsThe Indonesian Naval Ship Kri Bung Tomo arrived at the port of Colombo on a goodwill visit today, Navy said. The ship was welcome by the Sri Lanka Navy in accordance with naval customs, upon her arrival. A group of officials from the Embassy of Indonesia in Colombo was also present on the occasion. The ship’s crew which includes 107 members is scheduled to take part in a number of friendly sporting events and other programmes organized by the Sri Lanka Navy, during their 3 day official visit in Sri Lanka. The ship Kri Bung Tomo is due to set sail for its next port of call from the Colombo harbour on 21st of this month.
October 19, 2017 11:26 UTC
Features‘Rag - The Musical’ will take to the stage from November 2-5 at the Lionel Wendt Theatre. The musical, which is filled with melodies and meaningful lyrics, presents a positive message of non-violence and unity which is relevant to students in all educational institutions. Orginally performed in 2012, ‘Rag’ received standing ovations and rave reviews. The cast and production team are excited to present a brand new version of this musical to audiences. CentreStage Productions always promotes new talent in the lead roles, rather than relying on a star system of regular leads.
October 19, 2017 11:15 UTC