23 September, 2017

Sri Lanka Blocks Freedom Of Movement During CHOGM

Two days ahead of the Commonwealth Summit where Sri Lanka will assume the chair of an organisation that holds as its core values democracy, human rights and good governance, the military has stopped busloads of families of the disappeared from travelling to Colombo from the Northern Province.

Commander Daya Ratnayake

Commander Daya Ratnayake

Families from Mannar, Vavuniya, Mullaitivu, Kilinochchi and Jaffna were travelling to the capital Colombo to attend the Samagi Human Rights Festival, also known as the alternate Peoples Forum to stress Commonwealth Values.

Military personnel stopped the buses and turned the families back to their home districts at Madawachchiya and Madhu. Families from Mannar decided to hold a demonstration near Madhu Church while families from further north staged a demonstration at Vavuniya. However, the military and police have now dispersed those protests and sent the families home.

The Government previously stopped protesters from entering the capital during this year’s UN Human Rights Council session in March, when families of the disappeared attempted to reach Colombo in order to hand over a petition to the UN Headquarters in Colombo.

Sri Lanka is cracking down hard on anti-Government demonstrations and movements, including the Human Rights Festival organised by the Samagi Movement, ahead of CHOGM in the full glare of the world’s media who have descended on the island to cover the summit.

The Government on Monday grounded all private airlines flying to Jaffna until November 18. This morning a Sri Lanka Railways train carrying No Fire Zone Director Callum Macrae and the Channel 4 crew was besieged by demonstrators who stormed the railway track at Anuradhapura. The Train has been unable to proceed beyond that point so far. With bus loads turned back from entering the capital Colombo and media personnel harassed at the Omanthai Check Point – which the Government claimed months ago had been dismantled – Sri Lanka has managed to completely curtail the freedom of movement within its borders in the run up to CHOGM.

At a press briefing yesterday however, Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma said he was confident Sri Lanka would register progress on the human rights front and that the people of Sri Lanka would soon feel the change.

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    The streets of central Colombo are empty of people today – except for an overwhelming police and military presence – two days before the CHOGM circus.
    Civilians are staying off the roads having been informed of various road closures, while schools and universities were shut down for the CHOGM circus that promises DEMOCRACY and the Rule of Law. There is a ban on protests. What we see is the STATE OF EXCEPTION (AGAMBEN) of the SOVEREIGN DICTATOR instead!
    It seems the Commonwealth Heads of State despite the claim that its core values are Democracy and Human Rights, fear the PEOPLE and CIVILIANS of Sri Lanka. Yesterday, I took my little grand daughter to Galle Face where we go to watch sunset and eat ice cream. The usually vibrant green – full of kids, youth and adults and vendors and kite flyers, a space for CIVIL SOCIETY was closed and guarded by the police – no cars could park. But we heard of lip service being payed to “civil society” at a Forum far away in Hikkaduwa where statements and reams of recommendations were generated for the CHOGM People’s Forum!

    The deserted streets of Central Colombo is far more telling evidence that CHOGM and the Commonwealth of Clowns only serves to further reduce DEMOCRATIC space and VOICE in this Banana Republic military dictatorship of Mahinda Rajapakse and his brothers who have spent billions on a useless show. While Jaffna will protest when Prince Charles visists, Sinhalaya Modayas are scared and follow their dictator’s orders in the absence of any political opposition that has been killed by the other DICTATOR – Ranil Wickramasinghe of the UNP.
    Voila the Debacle of Asia!

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      Time has come to hold Kamlesh Sharma and the Commonwealth ACCOUNTABLE.
      We the people of Sri Lanka, which is suppose to head this corrupt circus called the Commonwealth, DEMAND a comprehensive, measured and results-based EVALUATION of the organizations performance in the past 2 decades.
      We also demand that Mahinda Rajapakse demonstrate progress in restoring the proper Chief Justice, the 17 Amendment to the Constitutions, return of lands and demilitarization of north before being made head of Commonwealth Circus.

      No organization is above MONITORING, EVALUATION and results measurement. Given its track record a TRANSPARENT EVALUATION of the organization and its RESULTS is required and should be the HIGHEST PRIORITY. It is time to hold Kamlesh Sharma ACCOUNTABLE to the common citizens and peoples he claims to benefit by the CHOGM circus.

      If it is proved as it no doubt will be, that this British Colonial old boys club for third world Dictators really promotes the “Common Poverty of Nations” and inequality and leaves a massive CARBON FOOTPRINT with NO measurable benefits to the peoples of these countries with regard to promoting EQUITABLE growth, development and democracy this WHITE ELEPHANT British Colonial Outfit should be SHUT DOWN.
      All Sri Lankans know that the CHOGM circus to celebrate Prince Charles 65th Birthday party in his post-colony, for which the Rajapakse military dictatorship has purchased fleets of Mercedes Benz cars and super luxury buses with massive kick backs will further beggar and indebt this already highly indebted country. The CHOGM circus will also boost the Rajapakse DEEP STATE and military dictatorship with its FACADE OF DEMOCRACY and further damage democracy and the Rule of Law in Sri Lanka.
      It is also clear to Sri Lankans that the Common Poverty of Nations is the more appropriate name for the Commonwealth Circus – a British Colonial relic. At this time in Sri Lanka it is clear that the Commonwealth is not just irrelevant and obsolete, it is positively DANGEROUS to the PUBLIC GOOD in the Global South. DEMOCRACY, GOOD GOVERNANCE AND RULE OF LAW which it claims to be its “core values” are constantly and consistently violated and undermined by this British colonial outfit’s support for third world dictators.
      The Common Poverty of Nations is an organization that promotes MILITARIZATION covertly, while boosting Asian and African Military Dictators (like Mahinda Rajapakse whose regime is accused of war crimes), to whom Britain sells arms and intelligence technologies during CHOGM Business Forums, while preaching human rights and rule of law!
      2. The fact is, all the SPIN generated at the Common Poverty of Nations (CHOGM) will not fool foreign investors – as indicated by the miniscule FDI figures for Sri Lanka. Foreign investors look for good governance, honest regulators and regulatory institutions and economic stability to invest in the REAL ECONOMY that produces real as opposed to fictional growth. Foreign investors except for Casino Kings are not even looking at Sri Lanka because the CORRUPT and UNEDUCATED Rajapakese brothers are a bunch of looters of public and private wealth.

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        President Rajapaksha is a hero. While you and the diaspora after so much hard work could achieve nothing. President Rajapaksha brought excellence and pride to our nation. You cannot stop him or Sri Lanka. Just talkers.

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      ” The Government on Monday grounded all private airlines flying to Jaffna until November 18.

      This morning a Sri Lanka Railways train carrying No Fire Zone Director Callum Macrae and the Channel 4 crew was besieged by demonstrators who stormed the railway track at Anuradhapura. The Train has been unable to proceed beyond that point so far.

      With bus loads turned back from entering the capital Colombo and media personnel harassed at the Omanthai Check Point – which the Government claimed months ago had been dismantled – Sri Lanka has managed to completely curtail the freedom of movement within its borders in the run up to CHOGM.”

      DON’T TELL ME THOSE DEMONSTRATORS WERE ALL CIVILIANS……. DELIVER ME FROM THAT TRIPE…PLEASE.

      ANY WAY, THERE’S THE PICTURE..THE CT HAS GIVEN US A PANORAMIC VIEW..SO MAY I ASK THIS :

      IS CHOGM UPHOLDING DEMOCRATIC VALUES OR HAVE THESE WEAK-KNEED C’WEALTH LEADERS COME HERE TO SANCTION THE TOTAL EROSION OF THOSE VALUES BY THE RAJAPAKSA BROTHERS? !

      IN TRUTH, RAJAPAKSA HAS GOT THE COMMONWEALTH DOWN TO COLOMBO AND IS OPENLY DEFAECATING ON EVERY SINGLE COMMONWEALTH PRINCIPLE AND ITS CORE VALUES AND USING THE CONSTITUTION TO WIPE HIMSELF OFF WITH IT WITH UNPRECEDENTED ARROGANCE. AND THESE BUFFOONS KEEP MUM ON IT ALL.

      HE MIGHT AS WELL USE CHARLES’ COAT AND TIE TO COMPLETE THE JOB!

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        Winston , Remember how the President was not allowed to deliver his speech at the Oxford Union in the UK . ? That protest was for a head of state . Did the UK government do anything about that ? How come this protest to block these cheque book journalists be different ??? Or is this not allowed because this is SL where foreign journalists could do what they like ? Their visa was for covering CHOGM .ONLY Were they travelling for A CHOGM MEETING IN VAUNIYA???

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          Sarojani

          Good one no further words are needed.

          For Peelamists – there is only one way. That is their own way.

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    International sponsors of Sri Lanka want to white wash the Sri Lankan regime.
    It appears the white washing is not sticking: It is beyond rehabilitation or redemption.

    The regime’s collective minds are stretched to the limit of war crimes, crimes against humanity and gross violations of human rights, refuse to go back to the original dimensions.

    It is a cancer in the terminal stage needing palliative care before demise.

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    These are signs of fear of a dictator. He will continue to violate further because he understands that he did the wrong and he cannot escape for what he did? Every one now understands why he is doing it: it is simply he is hiding the truth coming out. It is good because the whole world know the truth about this rule. If you have freedom of movement after 5 years of end of war and at the center of a International conference with international leaders and journalists, imagine the time when there was a war.

    I am now confident that he will be punished very soon and the people of Sri Lanka will be free from this dictatorship.

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    Remember! British police couldn’t guarantee the security for the President of Sri Lanka to travel from his hotel in London to Oxford University on Dec 1st, 2010 to give a lecture there.

    Now that the protesters have blocked the Kilinochchi bound train that carry Macrae and his crew, police have advised him not to travel further but to return to Colombo for security reasons.

    What is good for gander is good for goose. Fair enough. eh

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      Appu,

      Everything happens for a reason – imagine the embarrassment to the nation if he had gone ahead with the Oxford Union speech ? The performance on Al Jazeera was a class act !

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        Well said Point of View. This Appuwa will not be able to fathom what you have said.

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        We ain’t talking about the would be speech idiot. We are talking about British police couldn’t guarantee the Presidents security to and from Oxford and while in the University.

        If British wasn’t embarrassed about their incapability or incapacity why should we bother about it. Same answer goes for you basement man.

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          Oxford Union cancelled the speech – unable to provide security was the most idiotic response, Appu.

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          Banda

          Have you done your home work that I told you to do few days ago on the history of Irrigation.

          Don’t waste your time on defending the clan and their achievements rather I want you to read on the authentic and scientifically proven history of this island.

          I have already given you the titles of a few research papers and would like you to finish reading all of them within the next few days.

          Go read before you start typing garbage.

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        ha ha ha ! Brilliant by point of view ! Rajagodayas come to town !

      • 0
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        Well said PoW.

        God, one cringing performance, in NY, was murder and then Al Jaz. The youth of the commonwealth were mimicking him as they sipped their nightcaps.

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      Actually our Horana Banda is correct. Entire world lost the opportunity to hear that great speech due to Tamil Diaspora protest. It was well rehearsed Speech just like Al Jazeera Saga.

      Actually D.A.L.U Bando, Our King should have given a chance for Tamil people to protest like Sarath Gunaratna’s “Maha Janathawa” protested at the Katunayaka Air port against Channel 4 team. I think you also participated in that protest with a placard as you claimed in another post.

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      The so called protesters are nothing but GOSL stooges and or security personnel in civilian attire.

      Since when did BritisH allow their locals to genuinely threaten a foreign official; this so called ‘protest’ has all the hallmarks of collusion by the GOSL.

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        Haven’t you seen the protests against SL on British soil??? Are you justifying those acts because it was in the so called civilised side of the world????

        This government is corrupt but glad that its giving these goons a taste of their own medicine!! The sentiments regarding CH4 are pretty low but still they are here…

        We just want this circus to end so that we could get back to our road blocks and rising cost of living! among many other things….

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          You are making a strawman argument here because I never said anything about not allowing protesters.

          Protesting is fine and should be allowed in any country that calls itself a democrasy. This case with the C4 team wasn’t mere protests, it was people blocking the path of the train. This is akin to protesters in Britain blocking traffic and the GOSL’s movement and the police doing nothing about it. In Britain the authorities did not tacitly approve and support the protesters by allowing them to go beyon protesting to physically blocking traffic and GOSL’s movement.

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    ‘Families from Mannar, Vavuniya, Mullaitivu, Kilinochchi and Jaffna who wanted to attend ‘Human Rights Festival’ in Colombo should have known that it is not allowed and therefore bought a ticket and fly to rump LTTE organised festival in London.

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      [Edited out]

    • 0
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      “It is now allowed”
      So you admit the GOSL opposses any and all avenues for justice .

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        This is looking for no justice. This is your new art of finding a new road map for Eelam.

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          You are just making excuses to coverup the gross human rights violations of the GOSL. Anytime Tamils ask for some measure of self determination, you lot trot out all the tired cliches , like Tamil Eelam.

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    Will the military stop David Cameron from visiting Jaffna? If not perhaps the services of the thugs and BBS can be enlisted. Where are Gandasara, Akmeemana and Modawanse? Please show your colours to the delegates.

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      If the LTTE lobby in UK could stop attending to a conference & deny president of Sri Lanka’s freedom of expression, People living in Sri Lanka has the same right…

      I think People living in Sri Lanka can do it, Military is not required..

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    Of course the people of Sri lanka very soon, see the change in their day to day lives. less of democrazy, less of their rights to move, talk, expression, lives.

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      We are fine here in Sri Lanka. Mind your business.

  • 0
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    How dare people live out their daily lives this week, people please put up the national flag in every home and say jayaweewa.. We are so blessed with everything and everything is just fucking dandy.. We are going places and our kids are going to even fly higher.. What a joke from the people of Sri Fucking Lanka… Hip.. Hip.. fucking Hooray CHOGM and the rest of the world!!!

    Here’s a little freedom of speech for you guys, listen to the content and if you are allergic to swearing, please bring your parents in to listen and give guidance to you. And all the Grandpas please dismiss the swearing and listen to the lyrics.

    Back in the 80s the problem was still there…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2T6eJEJZHzo

    This shit has been going on for a very very long time, it’s time for people to wake up, it’s not just about Sri Lanka, it is much much bigger than that. Anyway just keep learning and realising the truth. And I am doing the same..

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    I believe that it is unfair to label the stoppage of their action as a violation of freedom of movement, because the govt claims that they were stopped for a good reason and for their own good.

    It is learned that they were on their way for a ‘service’ to a AIDs infested brothel and the govt forces had prevented them from reaching there for their own good.

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    Freedom of Movement in Sri Lanka resulted in many claymore blasts in the past.

    The government is very careful about this “freedoms”!

    UK is one of the SUPER POWER and was unable to provide security to Prez.Mahinda in London. Sri Lanka is not a super power or resourceful country to provide security to every white idiots!

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    UK PM and foreign minister has blocked some of its MPs from attending CHOGM in Sri Lanka because they happened to hold views contrary to UK MP and his FM.

    So if its OK for UK to block freedom of movement why are people so concerned when GOSL blocks freedom of moment?

    They say the MP who were going to attend CHOGM were paid by GOSL. The reality is however, both the MPs and PM/FM pair all have being paid by different parties to do their bidding!

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      Get your facts right Navin! It is not the UK government that blocked their attendance but the Conservative Party Whip. Do some research and understand as to why they did this. It is because the trip was fully funded by the Sri Lankan government for lobbying purposes!

      Why does the GOSL waste vast sums of money on funding the UK MPs’ lavish attendance of the Commonwealth Conference?

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        Oh how convenient! Conservative Party Whip blocked them not UK gov. Are you forgetting that Conservative Party is governing UK?

        Furthermore, so what if they had being paid? If they were doing something illegal the MPs should be sued under the law. Why did this “Conservative Party Whip” not do that?

        Even then, haven’t you heard that justice must not just be done but appear to be done as well? Now don’t tell me those UK MPs who wanted that cut throat Tamil Chelvam to address UK house of commons on plight of civilians in Wanni were not paid or “facilitated” to do so by “someone”?

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          Please do not flatter yourself; what you have manifested amply is your ignorance! To start with, currently, the UK has a coalition government; the Conservative party is the principle party. Even if one party were to solely form a government, the party whip is not the government. The party Whip is not answerable to the government nor he/she is accountable to the government. First you need to under stand this distinction.

          One of many duties of a party whip is to be vigilance such that, he/she will act to minimise bad press as a result of conducts of the party members including the MPs. In this case, he felt that, Sri Lankan regime is contentious and accepting lavish gifts would deem questionable in the current context.

          You have a blinkered outlook to the national question. One thing I can tell you is that the TNA have successfully endeavoured a position of moral high ground while the MR regime has gone the opposite way. Interesting times ahead….

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    Well people, will your litany of woes get corrected if the CHOGM carnival did not come to Lanka town.

    Use your own logic and compare Sri Lanka to North Korea. Do you want us to close our borders to all comers and conduct business in utter secrecy?

    I for one think it is better to engage Sri Lanka than to isolate. Even the slightest efforts by MR and Co to win praise from the CHOGM power brokers will translate to a great benefit for the rank and file in Sri Lanka.

    Road closures and keeping civil disturbances to a minimum during hosting an international event is common to all nations, including the best of democracies. The security of large numbers of international guests cannot be compromised.

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    This news team is in someone else’s country irritating the authorities deliberately. If foreigners arriving in London airport do the same, they will be locked up. Egging on the authorities to mishandle them, and then crying foul is not much of journalism. It is seeking gutter publicity and creating scenes for the effects. Prabhakaran did the same at Nandikadal and got his balls blown off. Macrae is also trying to do the same, and if does get blown up, I would not drop any tears for this punk. Quite honestly, I am disgusted by the journalists that purpot to represent Channel 4. I think Channel 4 must be desperate to create news of themselves to be broadcasted this way. It just shows what a waste of public money is this outfit.

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    CHOGM was a debacle foretold.

    Keheliya confirmed that invitees should stick to the agenda (and the script) set by the GOSL who are after all hosting the event. Who does David Cameron or anyone else for that matter think they are?

    Now perhaps, the members of the Commonwealth could reflect on the wisdom of our Indian and Canadian friends who had the courage to ‘stay isolated’. As grandma (bless her) said to us children ‘it’s better to be seen alone than be seen in bad company’.

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    “The Government on Monday grounded all private airlines flying to Jaffna until November 18” ??? How is this consistent with Gota’s
    and Rambukwella’s great boast the foreign media is welcome to “visit
    any place they want in Sri Lanka. We have nothing to hide”
    The Rajapakse brothers can play ducks and drakes with the local media
    and have nothing to worry. But the global media is a different cup of tea. Frustrating Channel-4 carrying out their legitimate business will have a price to be paid soon. Cameron will have to eat his words.

    F. N. Stein

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    CHOGM is nothing more than a load of hot air or a loud fart. That having been said the money our modayas have spent on it is going to come back and bite. But even then they will probably not realize that they have been deceived. The mind set of Sinhala modayas supporting our fuhrer is mind boggling.

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    WEEL PRIOR TO THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION THE GOVERNMENT AIRED OVER THE TV CHANNELS UNDER THEIR MANIPULTATN FILMS ON ADOLF HITLER AND IDI AMIN EQUALLING THE BEST GENERAL IN THE WORLD HIS EXCELLENCY GENERAL SARATH FONSEKA TO BOTH HITLER AND IDI AMIN AND TRIED TO CREATE FEAR IN THE MINDS OF THE CITIZENS OF SRI LANKA SAYING THAT HE WOULD BE A DICTATOR.

    H.E. GEN. SARATH FONSEKA DID WIN THE ELECTION BUT DUE TO THE MANIPULATION OF THE RAJAPAKSE REGIME AND THE KIDNAPPING OF THE ELECTIONS COMMISSION RAJAPAKSE ASSUMED PRESIDENCY.

    IT IS NOW EVIDENT WHO IS ADOLF HITLER AND IDI AMIN….. THE DICTATORIAL REGIME, THE MURDEROUSD REGIME, A REGIME CORRUPT AND WITH VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS……

    THE EVENTS IN THE PAST COUPLE OF DAY CLEARLY SHOWS THE GROSS VIOLATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS…… THE BLOCKING OF THE RAIL TRACK AT ANURADHAPURA, THE CANCELLATION OF ALL FLIGHTS TO JAFFNA, THE DEMONSTRATION AT THE BANDARANAIKE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT WHEN THE CHANNEL 4 PERSONNEL ARRIVED WHEN ALL PROTESTS HAD BEEN BANNED DURING THE RUN-UP TO THE CHOGM AND THE PERIOD OF THE CHOGM……. THESE ARE JUST TO NAME A FEW IN THE LAST COUPLE OF DAYS……

    I WONDER WHAT THE GOVERNMENT OF SRI LANKA HAS TO SAY……

    QUITE RIGHT THE HEADS OF STATE SHOULD NOT ATTEND THE OPENING OF THE CHOGM TO SHOW THEIR PROTEST AND A VOTE SHOULD BE TAKEN NOT TO HAVE A DICTATOR TO CHAIR THE SO CALLED COMMONWEALTH.

    FURTHER A RESOLUTION SHOULD BE PASSED TO REMOVE THE SECRETARY GENERAL KAMALESH SHARMA FOR PLAYING INTO THE HANDS OF THE RAJAPAKSES AND SUPPORTING A MURDEROUS REGIME.

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    You guys are off your minds.. We have infrastructure, this leads to diversing people around the other cities.. This is why our government is looking after you and making sure we build higways for you to make the daily work trip to Colombo.. All you guys do is say how bad this is and how bad that is.. You guys need to wake up and see that truth is that we as a country are economicaly developing, look at the infrastructre we put in place!!! No one before could and ever did these projects, this government is the bestest because they are making sure the poorest and village folks get a big slice of the pie..

    People like you on CT are just talking jibberish.. just like different strokes, what u talking about willis???

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