Japan defence minister’s Sri Lanka visit to keep China in check

Japan’s defense minister has begun a 5-day tour of India and Sri Lanka on Sunday. He hopes to boost defense cooperation with the countries and secure freedom of navigation in the Indian Ocean, where China is trying... More

Rise of Imran spurs similar demands in Sri Lanka

Sparked by Imran Khan’s ascent to the Prime Minister’s chair in Pakistan, sporting fans in Sri Lanka have been quick to pitch their own cricket stars as prospective leaders. And going by social media endorsements, Kumar Sangakkara... More

Japanese defense minister to visit Sri Lanka amid China links

Japan's defence minister Itsunori Onodera will visit Sri Lanka for the first time in history from August 20 to 22. The embassy of Japan said he will meet Sri Lanka's leaders also have talks with the State Minister... More

Iran to use SL rupee for fuel trade

Sri Lanka cabinet was told Tuesday that Iran had agreed to use the Sri Lankan rupee as the medium of exchange to carry out its fuel trade transactions with Sri Lanka because of problems in using the... More

Sri Lanka gets US military funding as China vies for influence

The United States announced Monday (Aug 13) it would grant Sri Lanka US$39 million to boost maritime security as China develops its strategic hold on the Indian Ocean island. The State Department will provide the funds as "foreign... More

Possibilities of Presidential pardon for sentenced Buddhist monk

In delivering the sentence of 19 years rigorous imprisonment against the General Secretary of the ultra-Buddhist nationalist Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) outfit, Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thera on charges of Contempt of Court, the Court of Appeal in Sri... More

India, China and courting for the hand of Lanka

The ebb and flow of time has seen Lanka in the midst of two key main suitors, one – India, who got involved in the island’s ethnic conflict in the 1980s, first to train the LTTE and... More

Closer defence ties with Russia, training for Lankan troops

Russia will become the latest partner to train Sri Lankan troops and extend defence co-operation. For this purpose, the Government has reached accord with a top level visiting delegation from Moscow. This is under a Joint Russia-Sri... More

Pacific Angel 2018 kicks off in Sri Lanka

The United States and Sri Lanka will conduct humanitarian assistance engagements during Pacific Angel 2018 (PAC ANGEL), from August 13-18, 2018. PAC ANGEL is an annual joint and combined humanitarian assistance and disaster relief engagement that includes general... More

Anti Muslim Monk get 19 years RI, but lobbying afoot for Presidential...

General Secretary of the Lankan Ultra nationalist outfit, the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS), Galagoda Athhe Gnanasara Thero, was Wednesday sentenced to 19 years of rigorous imprisonment by the Appeals Court in Sri Lanka on four Contempt of... More

Japan diplomats, defence officials, visit Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port

A delegation of senior Japanese diplomats and military officials had visited Sri Lanka's Hambantota port, which is now operated by joint venture company with China. The delegation had met key officials of Hambantota International Port Group (HIPG) the... More

Chinese Naval ship arrives in Lanka on goodwill visit

A Chinese Naval ship has arrived at the port of Colombo on a four-day goodwill visit, the Sri Lankan Navy said. 'Qian Weichang', the ship of the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) of China, was ceremonially welcomed by... More

Sri Lanka to host 2-day defence seminar in August end

Sri Lanka will host a two-day defence seminar which will focus on a wide spectrum of global and regional issues including the political changes in Pakistan, according to the Lankan Army chief. Addressing the media on the 8th... More

Sri Lanka keen to invest more in Bangladesh

Sri Lankan entrepreneurs have expressed their interest to invest more in different sectors of Bangladesh since there is an investment-friendly environment. They came up with their interest while a business delegation of the Sri Lanka Bangladesh Chamber of... More

EU extends LTTE ban for 6 months as Lanka tightens grip to...

Heavy lobbying by Sri Lanka has succeeded in the European Union deciding to continue the ban of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) as a terrorist organization, amidst fears of pro LTTE sentiments being revived in... More

Sri Lanka may allow visa-free entry for Indian tourists soon

Indian tourists visiting Sri Lanka may soon be exempted from visa requirement as the government is mulling granting visa -free entry to visitors from countries like India and China, Sri Lanka’s tourism minister John Amaratunga said today.... More

China’s base in Sri Lanka part of its dominant Indian Ocean presence

Sri Lanka recently announced it was shifting its naval base from Galle to Hambantota Port – considered “China-controlled” with a major role in China’s Belt and Road initiative. Sri Lanka has informed China that Hambantota cannot be... More

Sri Lankan gov’t reworking MoU on Hambantota airport deal with India

The Sri Lankan government is reworking on the draft of a memorandum of understanding to hand over the management of Mattala Rajapaksha International Airport at Hambantota to Indian airport operator, according to a media report today. Built... More

Germany arrests ex-LTTE suspect over alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka

German authorities have arrested a Sri Lankan man suspected of involvement in killing captured government soldiers as a member of the Tamil Tigers rebel group a decade ago. Federal prosecutors said a judge ordered Thursday the 36-year-old, identified... More

Sri Lanka awards Antonov aircraft overhaul contract to Russian firm

The Sri Lankan Air Force (SLAF) has awarded a contract to a Russia firm, MFG to overhaul three Ukrainian-origin Antonov AN-32B aircraft in Russia. According to a recommendation of the SLAF, the tender was won by a Russian... More

India concerned over China’s rising investments in Sri Lankan port projects

As China rushes to invest in more ports in Sri Lanka, India views with concern the Asian neighbour’s bid to increase its footprint in the Indo-Pacific region. China also recently gifted a naval frigate to the island... More


India’s multi alignment challenge 

This is clearly the big diplomatic season for India and its travel-driven Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Chinese defence minister Wei Fenghe's visit to India (Aug 21-24) is a hugely important event, coming as it does after PM Modi and Chinese president Xi Jinping defused the long military stand-off at Doklam through informal summits and after... More

To forge their peace, Afghan Taliban wage their war

While the latest Taliban attack on the city of Ghazni in Afghanistan has led many in the West, especially the mainstream media, to conclude that no peace talks with the Taliban can bring peace, these analysis seem to have completely missed the whole points of talks as they are going on: the Taliban are... More

Has digital media changed politics in Bangladesh?

Political nostalgia in Bangladesh centres around public and street agitations. It begins with the language movement of 1952 which defined the basic parameters of national aspiration. The next station of political memory is the 1962 student’s movement against Gen. Ayub Khan’s martial law regime imposed in 1958. It ended in 1969 with the most glorified... More

Accountability begins at home

A democratic form of government being accountable to the people, the elected representatives are accountable to the people who elect them. Our enduring constant crisis in governance stems from our inept and corrupt rulers trampling the essential pillars of good governance, rule of law and accountability. This gives rise to unbridled and widespread corruption,... More

Bangladesh: A social media driven state?

It’s not easy to have a calm conversation in Bangladesh. Everyone is rushing to make a comment, observe and abuse. Or make a counter to all that. Anything that requires critical thought is discarded and the instant reaction is the most common form of response. In a society not unduly famous for pondering, Bangladesh... More


Bleak times for freedom of expression, whether emergency or not

Its time to stop the nitpicking. All that hair-splitting about whether what we are witnessing in India today is classical fascism or not – stop it. The argument that this is not like the Emergency of 1975 – completely irrelevant. Those bookish notions belong to seminar rooms and academic discussions, where high-minded... More

India’s social-media ‘lynch mobs’ pose growing threat

Social-media platforms are often criticized for their susceptibility to toxic dialogue and vicious attacks. It is a problem that India knows well. Just ask External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, whose recent vilification by members and supporters of her own ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is a case in point. Swaraj has developed a... More

The new trade order

Since the start of the year, U.S. President Donald Trump has lashed out at allies and adversaries alike on trade. Often, as with India, the U.S. has pushed for enhanced security cooperation at the same time it declared trade relations a national security threat. The belligerence has left many baffled. Some pointers A first... More

One day does not an election make

The much-awaited Gazipur city election is over, the “we-knew-it-from-before” polls results are upon us, the “impartiality” of the police and the “neutrality” of the civil administration have once again been demonstrated, the never-too-late-to-follow “certificate” of the Election Commission has been delivered and, of course, our democracy now stands “strengthened”. As some would have... More



Gorkhaland, Mamata and the Chinese factor

Just a few days ago I warned two young student leaders in Darjeeling of West Bengal, against the violent movement which has started there for a separate Gorkhaland. I told them in no way should they support this demand. This has multifarious geo-political risks. If a Gorkhaland state is formed, this will... More