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Yukthiya with added vigour from today – Minister

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The event was presided over by Public Security Minister Tiran Alles with the participation of the Inspector General Deshabandu Tennakoon.

During the first six months of Yukthiya operation a total of 152, 672 raids have been carried out across the country with the total value amounting to Rs.19,075 million out of heroin, Ice, cannabis, cannabis plants, cocaine, hashish, mawa, thul, kush, madana modaka and narcotic pills seized. The number of recorded crimes decreased since the launch of Yukthiya operation compared with 2,055 crimes in the first six months of 2023 and 1,562 crimes reported in the first six months of 2024, a difference of 493 with a percentage of 24 in the decrease in crimes.

Rehabilitations conducted through the Police Suwasara Kadalla programme within the first six months of Yukthiya operation have been carried out in 602 Police zones in 256 community based centres with 12,800 drug addicts in line for rehabilitation and 1,302 of them already rehabilitated by now.

The Pawura Sansadaya conducted by the Yukthiya operation with the aim of protecting areas surrounding schools from drugs by installing drug committees have been established in 45 Police Divisions in each province and the number of schools identified to establish Pawura Sansadaya drug committees are 5,227.

Speaking to the media reporters gathered at the event Public Security Minister Tiran Alles said that no matter what threats may continue to come upon his life from external forces to stop the Yukthiya operation in the country, he will ensure that with the gigantic re-launch of Yukthiya special operation from July 4 with the leadership and support provided by IGP Deshabandu Tennakoon with the Police force, underworld and drug trafficking will be controlled and eradicated with a new approach where the people in the country will strongly feel the positive impact out of it.

Speaking to the media reporters at the event the IGP Deshabandu Tennakoon said that the country’s people have mostly praised the positive results achieved within the first six months since the launch of “Yukthiya” Operation to eradicate the underworld and drugs from the nation even though there have been threats from both overseas and local groups pressurising to stop the operation from the time of launching the special operation countrywide.

The IGP said that since 1982 when the first arrest was made on charges of possessing heroin, for 40 years until 2022 at least 1 to 2 generations of people surmounting to 5,979 have been identified by the Police Intelligence Unit and Police Narcotics Bureau as those who have been selling and conducting drug trafficking in the country freely as their main business and livelihood living extremely comfortable and luxury lives from the earnings buying properties, vehicles and other highly expensive assets.

He said that two groups have been identified involved in drug trafficking, those who send drugs to the country and those who bring down transporting drugs to the country from overseas. Through the special operation, with the information gathered by the intelligence unit, those who bring down and transport narcotics via sea routes have been mostly arrested. Fishermen have been mainly identified as those who bring in drugs sent from overseas hidden inside their vessels. Drugs brought into the land via the sea from Galle, Matara, Mannar or Puttalam are being distributed across the country by a network of drug traffickers.

The IGP said that he and Public Security Minister Alles decided to attack the drug distribution network in the country by arresting them while using sharp intelligence tactics and work towards capturing those who send drugs living overseas, which is how the Yukthiya special operation was launched. Out of the 5,979 identified drug traffickers in the country that was listed, 5,449 have been arrested within the first six months of Yukthiya operation which is a 91 percent progress of eradicating drug trafficking in the country both in urban and remote areas. A total of 1,788 have recommenced drug trafficking operations after release from Court detentions together with new arrivals in the drug distribution business within the first six months. A total of 3,765 drug addicts have been rehabilitated during the first six months. 837 cases of asset inquiries have been opened and Rs. 1,425 million worth illegally earned assets have been seized during the six month period. He said that even though these 1,788 drug traffickers will be arrested within the next three months, the drug trafficking network in the country cannot be easily eradicated within a short time as those involved in the trade have made it their lifestyle and culture.

Explaining the new approach of how the Yukthiya operation will commence going forward, the IGP said that a list has been made based on all provinces of all the drug traffickers and 80 percent of them have been already arrested and only another 20 percent are yet to be captured. Those engaged in the drug business will be captured using the Anti-Money Laundering law and the Narcotics law in order to seize all assets possessed by the drug traffickers through the money earned from distributing and selling narcotics. Asset inquiries will begin from July 4 to seize all assets gained by those involved in the drug trafficking network who have been arrested. The second new approach will be to free the drug addicts from their addiction into all types of narcotics they use as the majority of crimes happen in the country due to drugs.

The vision of Yukthiya operation is to create a country free of crimes where people can live without fear and the biggest obstacle to achieve this is drugs. Police launched its own countrywide community based drug rehabilitation centres with 286 of them already operating named “Suwasara Kadalla” and will rehabilitate 12,580 drug addicts within the next two months. Tennakoon said that by end December 2024 he will ensure that 50 percent of crimes committed by drug addicts will be reduced in comparison with last year (2023) by sending them to Police drug rehabilitation centres with another 256 centres that will be opened countrywide.

The IGP emphasised that from 04 July, the Yukthiya special operation will be re-launched with a fresh and novel approach to eradicate drugs and underworld from the country that will be strongly felt by everybody. He stressed that all firearms including T 56 weapons possessed by those illegally to commit crime in the country will be seized completely with the re-launch of Yukthiya from 04 July.

(dailynews.lk)

(This story, originally published by dailynews.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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NEC authorized to announce Prez polls after midnight today

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The Election Commission will receive the authority to announce the date of the presidential election after midnight tonight.

According to the Chairman of the election commission R.M.A.L. Ratnayake, the date will be revealed before the end of this month.

A special news conference will also be held this morning under his chairmanship.

Meanwhile, officials from the Ministry of Finance have been summoned to the Election Commission tomorrow.

Chairman of the election commission said that matters such as obtaining funds for the presidential election and other related matters will be discussed with these officials.

He further announced that future activities related to the presidential election are already taking place.

The Ministry of Finance previously announced that Rs. 10 billion had been allocated for the presidential election.

A senior spokesperson of the finance ministry confirmed that funds could be released whenever necessary for election expenses.

(News1st)

(Except for the headline, this story, originally published by News1st has not been edited by SLM staff)

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Trump nominated Republican presidential candidate

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Donald Trump won formal nomination Monday as the Republican presidential candidate and picked a right-wing loyalist for running mate, kicking off a triumphalist party convention in the wake of last weekend’s failed assassination attempt.

Trump announced 39-year-old Ohio Senator J.D. Vance as his vice presidential pick, rewarding a one-time harsh critic who became one of his most reliable — and uncompromising — supporters in Congress.

Trump, 78, is guaranteed a hero’s welcome at the convention in Milwaukee, where delegates delivered their formal nomination two days after the scandal-plagued former president survived an assassination attempt at a rally.

“As Vice President, J.D. will continue to fight for our Constitution, stand with our Troops, and will do everything he can to help me MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN,” Trump posted on Truth Social.

While Trump is increasingly confident of a shock return to the White House — despite multiple legal problems and two impeachments during his first term — President Joe Biden is reeling from weak polls and Democratic concerns over his health.

In the delegates count in Milwaukee, Eric Trump put his father over the threshold on behalf of the Florida delegation, calling him “the greatest president that ever lived.”

Vance had been widely expected as Trump’s pick. He will bolster the ticket on the right wing, but with less chance of expanding appeal to more moderate voters and women.

The standard-bearer for a new kind of populism that has come to the fore under Trump, Vance is also one of the least experienced VP picks in modern history.

But he embraces the ex-president’s isolationist, anti-immigration America First movement. Vance is further to the right than his new boss on many issues including abortion, where he embraces calls for federal legislation.

He initially made his name with the 2016 memoir “Hillbilly Elegy,” a best-selling account of his Appalachian family and modest Rust Belt upbringing, which gave a voice to rural, working-class resentment in left-behind America.

Turning his back on previous opposition to Trump, whom he once said might be “America’s Hitler,” Vance reinvented himself and ultimately won the ex-president’s key endorsement in the 2022 Ohio Senate race, launching his meteoric rise.

Trump’s convention comes as the country is still reeling from a botched attempt by a gunman to kill Trump at a rally in Pennsylvania Saturday.

Some 50,000 Republicans descended on the shores of Lake Michigan for the four-day gathering, four months before election day.

The attempted assassination — in which one bystander was killed, two more wounded and Trump received a light wound in his ear — was expected to dominate proceedings.

The Secret Service, which is battling criticism it failed to protect Trump from the shooter, said it was “fully prepared” to ensure security at the convention.

Leading in multiple polls, despite being convicted at his hush-money criminal case in New York, Trump is exuding confidence.

At 81, Biden is facing calls from his own side to quit the race over concerns around his age.

His campaign released a statement saying the Trump-Vance agenda would “take away Americans’ rights, hurt the middle class, and make life more expensive — all while benefiting the ultra-rich and greedy corporations.”

Trump scored another victory Monday as a judge dismissed the criminal case against him over accusations he endangered national security by holding on to top secret documents after leaving the White House.

He immediately took to Truth Social to call for the dismissal of all legal cases against him, insisting again that he was being targeted for political reasons.

Trump told the New York Post he had “prepared an extremely tough speech” about Biden’s “horrible administration” to deliver at the convention.

As some Republicans — including Vance — sought to blame Democrats’ anti-Trump rhetoric for the attack, Trump also said he hopes to “unite our country.”

Still, that would see him have to rein in the instinct to settle scores — demonstrated by his cry for supporters to “fight” in the seconds after Saturday’s attack.

The Milwaukee gathering is largely designed in Trump’s image, with digital banners beaming out a message in the cavernous convention arena: “Make America Great Once Again.”

The branding reflects his takeover of the party.

A diminished figure after his 2020 election loss and a subsequent riot at the Capitol by his supporters, Trump has spent much of the last four years reshaping Republican politics.

Installing loyalists including his daughter-in-law Lara Trump atop the Republican National Committee, the billionaire has effectively crushed dissent.

Source: Agencies

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Ceylon tea exports offset $60M of Sri Lanka’s fuel debt to Iran

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The Sri Lanka Tea Board announced yesterday that exports of Ceylon Tea have successfully offset a substantial portion of the country’s fuel bill owed to Iran, amounting to US $ 60 million.

Since 2011, Sri Lanka has accumulated an arrears of US $ 251 million for fuel imports from Iran.

Sri Lanka Tea Board Chairman Niraj De Mel said that the settlement was achieved, as exports of tea to Iran tripled during this period.

Facing financial challenges exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic and domestic economic downturn, Sri Lanka struggled to meet its financial obligations to Iran, due to the foreign exchange shortages.

To resolve this issue, an agreement was reached between the two nations, focusing on settling outstanding debts through tea exports.

De Mel reported that tea exports to Iran from January to May 2024 totalled 4.98 million kilogrammes, a significant increase compared to 1.85 million kilogrammes exported during the same period in 2023.

(dailymirror.lk)
(Except for the headline, this story, originally published by dailymirror.lk has not been edited by SLM staff) 

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