10:33 PM

Tamil Tigers are open to restarting peace talks

Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers are open to restarting peace talks with the government, a senior official with the separatists has said.

Balasingham Nadesan, the Tigers political chief, made the statement to the Associated Press news agency as the army continued an offensive in the north aimed at crushing the group.

"We have always been ready for peace talks, but the Sri Lankan government has been always insisting on a military solution," he said.

The two sides have been battling for more than 25 years over the Tamil Tigers' demand for an independent state for minority Tamils in the north and east of the Indian Ocean island nation.

The military push deep into the separatists' heartland in recent months has forced the Tamil Tigers to retreat from vast areas they once controlled, and the government has said it expects to finish off the group in the coming months.

However, Balasingham Nadesan said the group did not believe it was facing imminent defeat.

"We have made several strategic withdrawals in order to save the lives of our people and maintain the strength of our forces. When the time and place is conducive, we will regain the land we have lost," he said.

--- aljazeera ---

8:55 PM

LTTE retaliated to the loss of Kilinochchi by a suicide bomb explosion

LTTE after its ignominious defeat in Kilinochchi has carried out a desperate suicide blast in front of the Air Force camp , Slave Island down the C.A. Gardiner road at 5.15 this evening (Jan 2).
Primary investigations have revealed that the suicide bomber had tried to enter the Air Force camp but prevented by the Airmen at the entrance. The explosion has caused damages to a public transport bus playing from Moratuwa to Pettah. Two people have been killed and 22 others suffered injuries in the explosion. The injured have been admitted to the National Hospital, Colombo.
Meanwhile, a person suspected to have accompanied the suicide bomber has been arrested by the air men.
Defence observers call the latest bomb blast of the LTTE a desperate reaction to its nearing defeat. On Sunday (Dec 28) LTTE carried out simillar suicide blast close to a Roman Catholic Church at Wattala killing 6 people and wounding 29 others.

11:05 AM

Kilinochchi in Army control?

Uncomfermed source say kilinochchi town in Army control. militery source said that the troops are poised to capture Kilinochchi, the LTTE political and military epicenter in a few hours time.

10:05 AM

Ilamperiyan dead

The Electronic Warfare (EW) sources confirmed that an LTTE's support group commander, known as Ilamperiyan, who commanded the Paranthan battle was killed in fierce fighting ensued on 31 December. He was later given the self-styled 'Lt. Colonel' rank, EW sources further confirmed citing LTTE communication channels.

5:25 AM

Ceylinco Insurance Traded

The Colombo stock market closed the year with a bang yesterday with turnover reaching Rs.208.5, up from the previous day’s Rs.97.4 million with both indices too moving up – the All Share Price Index by 18.48 points (1.25) while the Milanka gained 19.31 points (1.20).

Ceylinco Insurance opened trading yesterday with a big parcel of 263,000 shares traded at Rs.150, down Rs.25 from the previous close with two more parcels of 90,000 and 60,000 done in early afternoon trading at Rs.175.
The share hit Rs.200 shortly thereafter and some biggish parcels, two of over 11,000 shares each, one of 31,500 and one of 44,200 were traded at this price before market closed for the day and the year.
A total of over 0.5 million Ceylinco, trading between Rs.150 and Rs.200, closed at Rs.200 gaining Rs.12 and generating a turnover of Rs.110.6 million. Other Ceylinco companies that traded in some quantity yesterday included non-voting shares of Ceylinco Insurance which traded between Rs.120 and Rs.145 gaining Rs.32.50 to close at Rs.145 on 21,400 shares traded.

Ceylinco Seylan Development saw 0.4 million of its one-0rupee shares traded between Rs.4 and Rs.4.60 gaining 70 cents to close at Rs.4.40. Ceylinco Housing and The Finance confirmed yesterday that Mr. Lalith Kotelawala continues to be the Chairman of these two companies.