Frank Jack's Feed
Nov 26, 2013

As WTO deal teeters, some blame Indian electioneering

GENEVA/NEW DELHI, Nov 26 (Reuters) – India may hold the key
to the credibility of the World Trade Organization and to a
trillion-dollar trade deal that apparently was derailed this
week, diplomats in Geneva said on Tuesday.

WTO chief Roberto Azevedo said negotiations by ambassadors
in Geneva had gone as far as they could. Specific difficulties
and last-minute backtracking now can only be overcome by trade
ministers at a biennial meeting on Dec 3-6, he said.

Nov 17, 2013

Sri Lanka escapes Commonwealth censure after fractious summit

COLOMBO (Reuters) – Sri Lanka’s human rights record was glaringly absent from a communiqué issued by Commonwealth leaders on Sunday at the end of a fractious summit dominated by allegations of war crimes during the bloody climax of the island’s 26-year civil war.

The normally sedate two-yearly meeting of mostly former British colonies ran into controversy this year before it had even begun after some members objected to it being hosted by a government accused of shelling civilians just four years ago.

Nov 15, 2013

Britain’s Cameron faces protests in former Sri Lanka war zone

COLOMBO/JAFFNA, Sri Lanka (Reuters) – Crowds of protesters met British Prime Minister David Cameron in the north of Sri Lanka on Friday, some surging towards his vehicle brandishing photos of relatives lost in the country’s long civil war that ended four years ago.

Cameron visited the city of Jaffna in the ethnic Tamil- dominated region of the island after attending the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth summit in the capital Colombo. The biennial meeting of mainly former British colonies has this year brought intense scrutiny of Sri Lanka’s human rights record.

Nov 15, 2013

Sri Lanka rights under scrutiny as Commonwealth leaders meet

COLOMBO/JAFFNA, Sri Lanka, Nov 15 (Reuters) – Leaders of the
Commonwealth of mostly former British colonies met in Colombo on
Friday for a biennial summit that has brought with it intense
scrutiny of Sri Lanka’s human rights record four years after the
civil war ended.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa had hoped the Nov. 15-17
meeting, which two heads of state have boycotted, would prove an
advertisement for progress and economic growth in the island
state of 21 million off India’s southern tip.

Nov 15, 2013

Clothes, suitcases on Sri Lanka beach recall war’s bloody endgame

PUTHUMATHALAN, Sri Lanka (Reuters) – Scraps of clothes, rusting cooking pots and broken medicine bottles are scattered across Puthumathalan beach, the litter of 300,000 civilians who crowded into the hamlet in the final days of Sri Lanka’s civil war.

Ethnic minority Tamil rebels made their last stand on the beach in 2009, after 26 years of fighting to set up a separate Tamil state in Sri Lanka’s north and east.

Nov 15, 2013

Commonwealth leaders meet, Sri Lanka human rights under scrutiny

COLOMBO/JAFFNA, Sri Lanka (Reuters) – Leaders of the Commonwealth of mostly former British colonies gathered in Colombo on Friday for a biennial summit that has brought with it intense scrutiny of Sri Lanka’s human rights record four years after the civil war ended.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa had hoped the November 15-17 meeting, which two heads of state have boycotted, would prove an advertisement for progress and economic growth in the island state of 21 million off India’s southern tip.

Nov 14, 2013

Army occupation angers Sri Lankan Tamils four years after war ends

JAFFNA, Sri Lanka (Reuters) – The threats came by text message, a phone call and a delivery of two cow skulls. The message was clear: stop protesting against the army’s occupation of your land or you will be killed.

Four years after Sri Lanka’s army crushed the Tamil Tiger guerrilla army and ended a civil war that had lasted nearly three decades, Tamils say they are blatantly repressed in Jaffna, the capital of this Indian Ocean island’s northern peninsula.

Nov 12, 2013

Torture claims cast shadow over Sri Lanka’s Commonwealth summit

COLOMBO (Reuters) – Allegations that ethnic minority Tamils in Sri Lanka are being subjected to abuses four years after the army won a civil war against separatist rebels have put pressure on the government as it prepares to host a Commonwealth summit.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said weeks ago he was skipping the meeting because of concern about a deterioration in human rights and his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, has also pulled out.

Nov 5, 2013

Jairam likens Modi’s rise to that of Nazi Germany

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – The government stepped up its criticism of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) prime-ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on Tuesday, painting him as a dangerous extremist and comparing his rise to the birth of Nazi Germany in the 1930s.

Modi’s critics have long sought to associate the Hindu nationalist leader with fascism and blame him for anti-Muslim riots in 2002 that killed at least 1,000 people. He denies any wrongdoing in the riots and a Supreme Court investigation found no evidence to prosecute him.

Nov 5, 2013

Indian minister likens rise of PM candidate Modi to Third Reich

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – The Indian government stepped up its criticism of leading opposition prime-ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on Tuesday, painting him as a dangerous extremist and comparing his rise to the birth of Nazi Germany in the 1930s.

Modi’s critics have long sought to associate the Hindu nationalist leader with fascism and blame him for anti-Muslim riots in 2002 that killed at least 1,000 people. He denies any wrongdoing in the riots and a Supreme Court investigation found no evidence to prosecute him.