Sri Lanka's parliament has voted to extend its tough state of emergency laws for
Government officials say the extension is needed to
eradicate any remnants of Tamil Tiger militants, following the rebel group's
defeat in the civil war last month.
The state of emergency gives law
enforcement authorities wide-ranging powers to arrest and detain suspects. It
has been in place for most of the past 25 years as the government battled Tamil
Meanwhile, Sri Lanka has turned back a foreign ship
carrying humanitarian aid that was paid for by Tamil expatriates. A military
official says the Syrian-registered "Captain Ali" had entered Sri Lankan waters
without following "proper procedure."
Last week, a military spokesman
said Sri Lankan authorities intercepted the vessel about 160 kilometers off of
the country's west coast.
In May, Sri Lanka
carried out a final assault that ended a 25-year civil war with Tamil Tiger
rebels. The rebel group had been fighting for a separate homeland for the ethnic
The United Nations estimates as many as 100,000 people
died in the conflict.