Arms dumping case fixed
The case against three LTTE cadres who were arrested within the high security zone of the Trincomalee harbour after they had allegedly dumped in the sea the military hardware they had been carrying, has been fixed for March 31.

Police said that investigations into the three LTTE cadres were still continuing.
The three cadres arrested over the last weekend were released on bail on Monday by Trincomalee District Judge Anton Balasingham.

Police claimed that the Navy men who arrested the three cadres had said that the cadres had failed to obey their orders and had thrown some of the items from their trawler into the sea. Police said that during investigations it had been revealed that they had been carrying military hardware.

US-Lanka trade talks on Tuesday
The second meeting of the Joint Council established under the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) will be held in Washington on Tuesday. The Sri Lanka delegation for the talks will be co-chaired by Minsiters G.L.Peiris, and Ravi Karunanayake, while US Deputy Trade Representative Jon Hunstman will lead the US delegation.

Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the US Devinda R. Subasinghe said the meeting would review the progress made in the recently-concluded peace talks as well as the status of trade and investment relations between Sri Lanka and the US and explore proposals for increased trade and foreign investment.

Trade between the two countries currently stands at about 2.5 billion dollars and heavily favours Sri Lanka.

A black page in world history, says Iraq envoy
By Chris Kamalendran
Wajdi A.M.Abbas, Charge 'd' Affaires of the Iraqi Embassy in Colombo has been a busy man since Thursday after his country came under attack by US led forces.
With his Television tuned into CNN, the Iraqi envoy has been busy keeping in touch with officials and relatives in Iraq for information of the latest developments back home.

With just three hours of sleep Mr. Abbas was back at his desk on Friday morning.
"March 20 is a black page in world history,” the Ambassador said keeping his eyes glued to the CNN coverage. He regretted that he was unable to access the independent Arab satellite Network Al-Jazeera.

"The coverage I am watching is biased. They are only giving one side of the story. But I am also getting information on the telephone as well," he said. "It is not only Iraq that will be affected by the war, but the whole world will face the impact. There will be mass displacements, recession, and unrest," he lamented.

Coming from a family of six sisters and four brothers Mr. Abbas said he was concerned about his other family members as well as the citizens of his country.
He says that Sri Lanka could be seriously affected by the war as Iraq is one of the largest buyers of its tea. He said nearly 800,000 kilograms of tea to be shipped from Colombo to Iraq had been held up and that there could be a further repercussions in the coming days.

"More than 1.5 million Sri Lankans are employed in the Gulf region and the war will affect almost all of them," he warned. Sounding an ominous note, Mr. Abbas said he did not see a quick end to the war and believed that intense fighting would breakout when allied troops reached the populated areas.

He believed the war would go on for about six months. He said he believed the Iraqis would teach the American-led troops a 'good lesson' and said that tens of thousands of his countrymen were willing to sacrifice their lives.

On Thursday evening Mr. Abbas was busy briefing officials in his country about the statement issued by the Foreign Ministry in Colombo where concern had been expressed over the UN's inability to avert war. The Embassy manned by about 10 staff members had no additional guards, except for the lone policeman who was on his routine shift.

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