News Features

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Proposed KDU Bill will only govern KDU : Maj. Gen. Milinda Peiris

With a vision to educate males and females to be commissioned officers in the armed forces the General Sir John Kotelawala Defence Academy was established in October 1980. In 1988 the educational establishment achieved university status thereby being able to confer degrees to its students. Renamed as the General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University in 2007, the University has kept its doors opened for civil students (day scholars) since 2012 with the objective of enhancing the civil-military relationship. However the proposed General Sir John Kotelawala National Defence University (Special Provisions) Bill has been heavily criticised as many claim that it would bring about militarisation within the higher education sector. “The General Sir John Kotelawala National Defence University Bill is only for KDU. With that you cannot govern any other institution in the country,” said Kotelawala Defence University Vice Chancellor Maj. Gen. Milinda Peiris (RWP RSP VSV USP ndc psc MPhil (Ind)) in an interview with the . Following are excerpts of an interview done with Maj. Gen. Peiris: 


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SLNS Sindurala: A Tight Ship

Sri Lanka is a resplendent island blessed with natural resources.


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The Magnificent iron giants of the blue skies

In our continuing series on the flying formations of the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF), today we journey into the realm of the heavy military transporters. The No. 2 Squadron located at the SLAF Base in Katunayake is the home of the pilots and formidable aircraft that give the Air Force its heavy lift capability.


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"100 years of international cooperation in hydrography" - Sri Lanka Navy Hydrographic Service celebrates World Hydrographic Day

A need for a navigational chart aroused as man started to navigate through waters and the importance of hydrography came into play since then. Hydrography involves a process, from collecting data in the field to the preparation of the chart in accordance with the highest international standards and contributes immensely to the economic development of a country. The International Hydrographic Organization (IHO), which has 94 member countries including Sri Lanka, coordinates hydrographic activities worldwide through 15 Regional Hydrographic Commissions (RHCs). The IHO was founded in Monaco on 21st June 1921.


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A Resilient Army That Rises Above Challenges

A pandemic of this scale needs a quick response. Undoubtedly the military has the capacity of furnishing the manpower as well as the resources needed to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has halted the people’s ordinary lives since March 2020.


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SLNS Parakramabahu : Pride of the naval fleet

The location of Sri Lanka gives this nation strategic importance on maritime maps. Over the past decade,   the Sri Lanka Navy has steadily enhanced its fleet with 'blue water' capability. I was honoured to go onboard the magnificent frigate class Advanced Offshore Patrol Vessel SLNS Parakramabahu (P-625).


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Navy dogs Assist in daring missions

The Navy is synonymous with the ocean and ships. Interestingly the Sri Lanka Navy has a fully combat-capable ground force component for various duties. Among these shore establishments a special section of sailors are stationed at SLNS Gemunu in Welisara. These sailors are the proud handlers of the robust Navy dogs.


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SLNS Gajabahu guarding our ocean’s domain

Strategically located on the maritime map, Sri Lanka commands an important segment of the majestic Indian Ocean. Maritime security is a vital part of our overall national security objective. The Sri Lanka Navy has faithfully guarded our island for seven decades, and continues to augment its deep sea capacity. Cruising majestically at a speed of 28 knots is the formidable addition to the naval fleet, the SLNS Gajabahu. I went onboard this amazing vessel which has nine floors and two masts. As she cut through the waves, she unleashed a ripple on the waterline and the spray covered her pennant number P-626. This vessel once belonged to the American Coast Guard and was named USCGC Sherman.


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Navy ushers hope for rural children

Education is a right of every child. Students everywhere must have the right atmosphere conducive for learning. Unfortunately some rural schools face various challenges.


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Empowering ground operations

Aircraft are synonymous with a nation’s Air Force. However there are many other sections which work behind the scenes to augment the overall role and task of the Air Force. Today we discover the great but silent contribution of the SLAF Regiment (also referred to as the Rock Apes) the largest component of the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF). Operating under the Directorate of Ground Operations, this command has 31 specialized regiment wings that have consistently enhanced the SLAF’s mission in achieving the overall national security objective.


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The elite naval commandos

For seven decades the Sri Lanka Navy has secured our maritime domain. Apart from its ocean-going fleet the Navy has augmented its combat capability on land with elite Special Forces personnel.


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Sandahiru Seya sacred treasures ceremonially deposited

Around 29,000 Army, Navy, Air Force, Police and CSD soldiers sacrificed their lives to liberate the country from the crutches of terrorism. Over 60,000 soldiers were injured during the war and even today, over 14,000 are confined to a wheelchair or bed having been critically injured and rendered disabled. That is how they will have to spend the rest of their lives, but they are proud of what they have done for the liberation of the country. Hence, the President and Prime Minister embarked on a project to erect the ‘Sandahiru Seya’ in memory of all these valiant war heroes who gave their all for the country.


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Trusted wings of hope and combat support

The Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) proudly celebrated its 70th anniversary recently amidst much grandeur. In this backdrop, today we discover one of the squadrons whose pilots and crews have done a tremendous task to augment the combat operations of the SLAF.


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Walking amidst the Splendour of Nature

It is an eye-catching scene especially in the dawn and dusk along the route that leads from the Environment Authority to the Army Headquarters in Battaramulla; young and old citizens of Sri Lanka clad in sports attire jogging and engaging in physical exercises for a healthy physique. Developing the concept of the contemporary leaders of the country to build a healthy nation, the Army-maintained jogging path under the shade of indigenous herbal trees is open for the people from all strata.


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Squadron, the cradle of fighter piloting

It is two days prior to the 73rd independence of Sri Lanka, No. 5 Jet Squadron, the cradle of fighter piloting in the Sri Lanka Airforce celebrates its 30th anniversary on February 1.


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SLAF AOW repairs aircraft in SL

The Aircraft Overhaul Wing (AOW) at the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) Base in Katunayake, which celebrates its fifth anniversary this year, has already been able to secure a large amount of foreign revenue by repairing Chinese made aircraft in Sri Lanka. 


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Dare with danger

Militaries around the world are being challenged with new threats. The theater of aviation and airport security is also being influenced by various nontraditional threats. The guardians of our skies, the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF), have been gearing up to mitigate these new challenges thrust upon them. Over the past decade, the term CBRNE has gained much attention within the international military arena. CBRNE stands for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive. The latter can be purposely combined with one of the first four dangerous elements to magnify the outcome of a calculated terrorist attack. It is in this backdrop that the Air Force initially trained a small batch of men way back in 2008. By 2016 there was a paradigm shift and the CBRNE Wing blossomed as a fully-trained and response-ready squadron with its headquarters at the Katunayake Air Force Base.


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Twin Major Generals to enter Guinness Book

Two identical twins - Major General Pooraka Seneviratne and Major General Jayantha Seneviratne signed to include their names to keep a record in Guinness Book of World Records, yesterday.


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‘Beyond call of duty’; True marvels around us

On June 26, four persons who had demonstrated and acted beyond their call of duty were felicitated and awarded with cash prizes by Defence Secretary Maj. Gen. (Retd) Kamal Gunaratne.


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Bombshell revelation of distant terrorists

The former cadre of the now defunct LTTE, who succumbed to his injuries early this week due to burn injuries in an explosion, has revealed that he was financed by LTTE supporters which want to revamp LTTE in the North.


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Mission accomplished

Constructing a 238-meter-long and four feet wide strong embankment across a river to retain water for a swathe of thousands of acres to prevent flood within few days, is no easy.


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Defence Services College opens after COVID-19 lockdown

The Defence Services College at Malay Street, Colombo, was reopened, today, after a 115-day closure as the government had decided to shut down schools and educational institutions to contain the spread of coronavirus outbreak in the country.


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Creating wonders in depths

Underwater is fascinating due to the mystery that it entails and the historical context. The water that lies beneath the surface is often the reminder of a human tragedy - the ending of a journey and a loss of human lives.


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Remembering victims of terror ; Kebithigollewa massacre

June 15, 2020 marks the 14th year remembrance of the LTTE attack on Kebithigollewa bus, one of the barbaric massacres perpetrated by the LTTE terrorists targeting civilians.


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Delivering hope in the raging sea

The strong winds hissed violently as the Ampan cyclone unleashed its fury in the Indian Ocean. The waves tossed with increasing momentum. The gusty wind coupled with heavy rain caused fear among coastal communities.