July 27, 1989 |
The gruesome remains smoldered outside the tea shop for more than 12 hours before finally being removed by police. It was the body of a young man with a gasoline-soaked truck tire bound to his chest and set ablaze. The flaming body was dumped along Sri Lanka's main coastal road for all to see, as a message from the nation's security forces, the old man who runs the tea shop explained, adding that to give his name would be to risk his life. The message: Don't fight us, or you will be next.
November 18, 1987
Sri Lanka's finance minister, R. J. G. de Mel, proposed tax cuts on personal income and tea exports but set higher rates for liquor, beer and lipstick in a package of reforms presented to Parliament to rebuild the island's war-shattered economy. De Mel also proposed raising salaries of civil servants.
July 11, 1995 |
More than a mile above the Indian Ocean, where the mountainsides are covered by a soft green blanket of the bushes known as camellia sinensis , a revolution is brewing, stirred by consumers in far-off markets. Changing tastes and technology are shaking Sri Lanka's century-old tea industry, a business that provides work for more than a million Sri Lankans, more than any other economic sector on this ethnically and politically troubled island.
September 20, 2001 |
Hundreds of thousands of Sri Lankans took to the streets and joined hands Wednesday in demonstrations to urge their government to start peace talks with Tamil Tiger rebels. It was the largest display ever by Sri Lankans of all ethnic groups for an end to the separatist war launched by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam 18 years ago. The rebels say Sri Lanka's 3.2 million Tamils need a homeland to prosper away from domination by the Sinhalese, who make up 14 million of the country's 18.
August 4, 2006 |
Edging closer toward all-out war, Sri Lankan soldiers and Tamil Tiger rebels traded fierce gunfire and artillery strikes Thursday, killing 20 civilians and injuring dozens of others who had sought shelter inside a mosque and a school. The battle for the town of Mutur, in northeastern Sri Lanka, witnessed some of the fiercest clashes between government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam since ground fighting erupted last week.
December 6, 2001 |
Parliamentary elections plagued by violence ended Wednesday amid killings, ballot theft and an army blockade that prevented as many as 130,000 minority Tamils from reaching the polls. More than 70% of Sri Lanka's 12.4 million eligible voters cast ballots for the 225-seat Parliament, the national Election Commission reported. Results from three of the country's 22 districts showed the governing People's Alliance and the main opposition United National Party running neck and neck.