8:09 AM

Sri Lankan Envoy Barred from Israeli-Occupied Territories

Ambassador Prasad Kariyawasam, Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN and chairman of the UN's Special Committee on Israeli Practices, was barred once again from entering the occupied Palestinian territories, including the West Bank and Gaza.

He said the Israeli authorities prevented him and his three-member committee "from seeing the reality." As a result, he said, the Special Committee had to rely on consultations with witnesses to the "human symptoms developing among many of Gaza's children."

"Children see their fathers humiliated everyday and they are losing hope, it can lead to them turning to extremism," he told reporters at a press conference in Cairo. The other members of the committee are the UN ambassadors from Malaysia and Senegal.

While he warned of the immediate and long-term consequences of rising unemployment and poverty levels, fuel and electricity cuts, restrictions on the import of essential goods and restrictions on freedom of movement to and from Gaza, Kariyawasam was especially concerned about the children of Gaza.

7:07 AM

Three Special Police Teams For Investigation

Media representatives have alerted the British Government and multilateral organisations here to the latest physical attack on a Sri Lanka journalist by still unidentified assailants which also saw a local official of the British High Commission in Colombo injured.

It is understood that questions are to be raised with the British authorities about what the government expects to do about the violence which has now targeted, inadvertently or not, a Sri Lankan attached to the high commission in Colombo.

Meanwhile three special police teams have been directed to track down the assailants of the journalist and a local officer of the British High Commission in Colombo, presidential secretariat sources in Colombo said yesteeday

6:07 AM

Karuna deported back to Sri Lanka

Vinayagamoorthy alias Karuna Amman, Leader of the Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal was deported back to Sri Lanka yesterday. He arrived at the Katunayake International Airport on 03 July, around 3 PM.

His arrival to Colombo was confirmed by Azad Moulana, Coordinating Secretary to the Chief Minister of East Provincial Council, who revealed to press that Karuna contacted him over the telephone from the Katunayake airport.

Defence Spokesman and Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion, Keheliya Rambukwella, earlier said if Karuna returned the authorities would deal with him according to the law.