President Sirisena’s centre-left Sri Lanka Freedom Party and Prime Minister Wickremesinghe’s centre-right United National Party were routed by a political party backed by former President Rajapaksa at the local polls – plunging the government into political crisis.
The national election is not due until 2020 and under the constitution President Maithripala Sirisena can bring the vote forward only after two-thirds of parliament endorses it.
The unexpectedly strong showing could lead to defections away from the centre-left party led by President Maithripala Sirisena.
Much of the process has been delayed by Sri Lankan government amid worries it will lose popularity among Sinhala Buddhists, Sri Lanka’s majority community.
In terms of geo-political strategy, Sri Lanka’s economic dependency on China and the precedent it has set, Indian experts are apprehensive of the growing Sri Lanka-China relationship.
The UN and rights groups have accused the Sri Lankan military of killing thousands of civilians, mostly Tamils, during the final weeks of the civil war.
Colombo’s plans to acquire land for the industrial zone have run into stiff domestic opposition, backed by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Hundreds of Sri Lankans clashed with police at the opening last month of the industrial zone in the south, saying they would not be moved from their land.
The new investment would give the Chinese control of Magampura port and a proposed investment zone – an attempt by Sri Lanka to revive their own economy.
A round-up of the most important stories from the South Asian region.
In the fourth of a five part interview centred around his book, Choices, India’s former national security advisor Shivshankar Menon discusses India’s Sri Lanka policy.
Sirisena had cancelled the gazette notice issued by then governor of Sri Lanka Robert Brownrigg in 1818 naming the Sinhalese leaders as traitors.
In January 2009, the journalist wrote an editorial saying that if he were killed, the government would be responsible.
The Sri Lankan government has acknowledged that there could be as many as 65,000 people missing following three decades of civil war.
The previous government of Mahinda Rajapaksa, in office for nine years until January 2015, borrowed heavily on commercial terms to fund infrastructure projects after a 26-year war ended in 2009.
Basil Rajapaksa has been arrested over allegations of misappropriation of state funds during his tenure as economic development minister.
Washington could make it clear that increased military cooperation is off the table indefinitely and that bilateral ties are directly related to progress pertaining to the UN Human Rights Council resolution.
Umar Naseer, who resigned as home minister over differences with President Abdulla Yameen, has announced he will run for president.
The government’s external policy strength lies in the position of equidistance it is now maintaining with regional, continental and global powers.
The Office of Missing Persons (OMP) will have investigative powers and will probe people who went missing in the conflict and political unrest, including “enforced” disappearances.
New Delhi’s policy of hustling its smaller neighbour comes at a time when the Wickremesinghe government’s mismanagement of the economy is apparent and will end up helping the xenophobic political forces in the country.
Despite the final defeat of Rajapaksa—prime mover of closer ties with Beijing—Colombo is buried under billions of dollars of Chinese debt and has little option but to go along, albeit at a pace slower than earlier.
The possibility of the Rajapaksa-led opposition using Sinhalese communalism to unsettle and undermine the new government of moderates is actually very real
For the second time in eight months, Sri Lankan voters have thwarted former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s quest for power. And that clearly is the biggest story of the just concluded parliamentary elections. The United National Front for Good Governance (UNFGG), contesting under the banner of the United National […]
As per the final tally, the Ranil Wickremesinghe-led United National Party (UNP) secured 93 seats, ten more than the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) which Rajapaksa is part of.
The final tally of Sri Lanka’s parliamentary elections is expected to emerge Tuesday evening, but neither of the main parties has secured a simple majority in the 225-member parliament.
Rajapaksa forced himself into the UPFA reckoning to contest the parliamentary poll, an action unprecedented for a former president of the country.
The fate of the ‘silent revolution’ of January 8, 2015, which saw the autocratic regime of Mahinda Rajapaksa being replaced, is in the balance.