The Web Sri Lanka In Focus

Friday, 7 March 2008

Clashes kill 42 in northern Sri Lanka

The military in Sri Lanka said Friday 38 Tamil Tiger rebels and four soldiers were killed while 20 soldiers were wounded in separated clashes in the north on Thursday.

Officials from the Media Center for National Security said 16 LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) rebels and four soldiers were killed while 15 soldiers were injured in three battles in the Welioya district.

In the Mannar district, government troops killed 12 rebels in Parappakandal area while three soldiers were injured in Adampan area.

In Vavuniya, seven rebels were killed and one soldier was wounded in several battles.

In the Jaffna peninsula, three LTTE rebels were killed and one soldier was injured in two separated clashes.

The Sri Lankan government said Wednesday that 104 soldiers and police officers were killed while 822 were wounded in February during the conflicts between government troops and the LTTE.

It also said 80 civilians were killed while 201 were injured in the conflicts.

The military said 871 LTTE rebels were killed in February, in addition to about 500 rebels killed in January.

Sri Lanka's security forces are currently engaging the rebels in the Northern Province with heavy artillery and mortar duels being reported regularly.

Having taken over the control of the Eastern Province last July, government leaders now vow to crush the Tamil Tigers from their last Northern Province bastion.

The LTTE has been fighting the troops since the mid-1980s to carve out a separate homeland for the Tamil minority in the north and east, resulting in the death of more than 70,000 people.


IPTV finds Cable TV a threat to competition

By Ravindu Peiris

Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) introduced to Sri Lanka by Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) is threatened by the competition offered by Cable TV and Satellite TV providers.

SLT Head of IP and Broadband Networks Division Priyankar Udugodage said that although they can offer IPTV for low prices the Cable TV providers such as Dialog TV are already providing such for low prices. "That is where the issue is, the Cable TV competitors" he said at the Cisco Media Offsite 2008. SLT which has already obtained the license for IPTV can offer it wherever DSL is offered.

A significant feature of IPTV according to Udugodage is that in IPTV the customers decide when to watch the programmes and not the broadcasters. "The copper lines which have been placed can bring high speed internet to your computers as well as DVD quality TV" he affirmed.

Udugodage moreover revealed that if it was not IPTV they could portray higher prices but because it is IPTV they can talk about offering it to customers at a very reasonable cost. He revealed that SLT Broadband is experiencing a 100 percent growth with 60,000 households opting for broadband in the island.

"Although we laid the fibre up to Jaffna it was disconnected but it has been spread even to Vavuniya and they are able to enjoy ADSL" he said.

He confirmed that in the next few years the networking and communication system will be imperative to the Sri Lankans like water and electricity as the network in this country is evolving to an IP standard. "In the future there would be one converged network for broadband be it wired or wireless. Now we have separate lines and fees for everything but in the future it would be only the IP Wide Area Network Broadband" he said.

He pointed out that in those days it was a mere public communication network with just the voice being broadcast.

However now it has transformed in the last 15 years going beyond voice and now offering various multimedia services. He noted that it was Cisco who pioneered the IP routers in Sri Lanka and also supported the SLT to enhance and develop the company's networks.

Source: Daily Mirror