The Lanka Academic

 
JANUARY 26, 2010 EST, USA
 
QUAERE VERUM
 
VOL. 10, NO. 295

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Rajapaksa Set to Win Re-Election in Sri Lanka, Spokesman Says
Bloomberg, jan 27. Jan. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa is heading for a sweeping victory in the country’s first peacetime election in three decades, his spokesman said.

“Based on results so far, we are forecasting a 1.8 million- vote majority,” Chandrapala Liyanage, head of the president’s media unit, said in a telephone interview today.

With about a quarter of the projected 10 million votes counted, Rajapaksa, 64, had captured almost 60 percent compared with 39 percent for challenger Sarath Fonseka, according to official results on state-run Rupavahini television. Fonseka’s campaign officials were not immediately available for comment.

Rajapaksa and Fonseka, his former army chief, spearheaded a victory last May over a 26-year Tamil Tiger conflict that killed 100,000 people. They fell out after the president moved Fonseka, 59, to a ceremonial post and accused him of plotting a coup.

The new administration must build on an economic recovery in the South Asian nation led by increased construction and farm production in the war-ravaged north. Sri Lanka’s stocks are Asia’s second-best performing this year after the benchmark index more than doubled in 2009. Markets are closed today. More...Discuss this story
Published: Tue Jan 26 22:42:07 EST 2010


Lanka polls: Rajapakse takes big lead, violence expected
afp, jan 27. COLOMBO: Incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa took a strong lead in counting on Wednesday in Sri Lanka's bitterly disputed presidential election,Election officials said Rajapaksa who is being challenged by his estranged former army chief Sarath Fonseka, had won 60 percent of the vote with about a fifth of the ballots counted.The winner of the island's first election since last year's defeat of a three-decade insurgency by ethnic Tamil rebels was set to be announced around midday (0630 GMT).Tensions were acute in the capital Colombo, where up to 80 armed soldiers ringed the deluxe hotel where Fonseka was staying with several other opposition leaders."We have surrounded the hotel," a military spokesman told AFP. "We have information that there are 400 people including army deserters inside. We have sent word for them to surrender," he said. More...Discuss this story
Published: Tue Jan 26 23:38:24 EST 2010 Back to the top

Rajapaksa Leads Sri Lanka Vote as Fonseka Candidacy Challenged
Bloomberg, Jan. 27. Jan. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa leads in early returns from yesterday’s election as officials defended the candidacy of challenger Sarath Fonseka, who isn’t registered to vote.

Rajapaksa, 64, led with about 688,000 votes compared with 441,000 for Fonseka, according to official results published by the Daily Mirror newspaper. The South Asian nation has 14.1 million eligible voters, with turnout projected at about 70 percent. Initial returns in the South Asian country included postal ballots from state employees who favored the incumbent.

Rajapaksa and Fonseka, his former army chief, spearheaded a victory last May in a 26-year civil war with Tamil Tiger rebels that killed 100,000 people. They fell out after the president moved Fonseka, 59, to a ceremonial post and accused him of plotting a coup. More...Discuss this story
Published: Tue Jan 26 20:05:01 EST 2010 Back to the top


Sri Lanka presidential challenger says fears arrest
Reuters, Jan 27. COLOMBO, Jan 27 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's top opposition candidate said troops had surrounded his hotel on Wednesday, after polling in Sri Lanka's first post-war presidential election ended with the revelation that he was not a registered voter... Back to the top

Fears military will intervene in Sri Lanka election
Herald, Jan 27. Fears that the Sri Lankan military might intervene in a crucial presidential election were stoked overnight when a large contingent of troops surrounded the hotel where contender, Sarath Fonseka, was staying in Colombo... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Election Officials Defend Fonseka’s Presidency Bid
Bloomberg, jan 27. Jan. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lankan election officials defended the right of opposition presidential candidate Sarath Fonseka to stand in yesterday’s ballot amid reports of a government challenge. Fonseka, the former army chief, was not registered for the election because he was in “the battlefield” when voter lists were drawn up, his spokesman, Anura Kumara Dissanayake told reporters in Colombo, the capital... Back to the top

Top S.Lankan challenger 'ineligible': govt
afp, jan 26. Sri Lanka's government said on Tuesday it would challenge the legitimacy of leading opposition candidate Sarath Fonseka, who contested the country's first post-war presidential election... Back to the top

70 pc turnout in Sri Lanka's presidential polls
sifynews, Jan. 26, 2010. Colombo: Polling in Sri Lanka's presidential election ended on Tuesday with a turnout of more than 70 per cent as heavy security was deployed to prevent violence... Back to the top

Sri Lanka’s 1st Postwar Vote Passes Peacefully; Economy Figures
Bloomberg, Jan. 26. Jan. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lanka’s first peacetime presidential election in three decades passed off with few reports of violence as voters urged the two frontrunners to improve living standards. The candidates in today’s ballot are led by incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa, 64, and his former army chief Sarath Fonseka... Back to the top

Troops Patrol as Sri Lanka Votes for Peacetime Leader (Update3)
Bloomberg, Jan. 26. Jan. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lankans cast ballots at polling stations guarded by 105,000 troops and police in the first peacetime presidential election in three decades, choosing between the politician and general who ended a bloody insurgency. President Mahinda Rajapaksa, 64, and his former army chief Sarath Fonseka both claim credit for ending a civil war last May with Tamil Tiger rebels that killed 100,000 people and polarized the South Asian nation of 20 million... Back to the top

Bomb blasts marr Sri Lanka elections as polls open
Times, Jan 26. Voting has begun in a tense Sri Lanka amid heightened fears of election violence... Back to the top

Polling in presidential election opens in Sri Lanka
DPA, Jan 26. Colombo Polling in Sri Lanka's presidential elections opened on Tuesday morning in the first national election to be held in the country since the defeat of the Tamil rebels of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in May... Back to the top

Sri Lanka ‘Stability’ to Help Stocks Extend Rally, NDB Says
Bloomberg, Jan. 26. Jan. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lankan stocks are poised to extend last year’s record gain no matter who wins today’s election, as the end of the 26-year civil war and rising corporate profits bolster the economy, according to the nation’s largest non-government investment fund. NDB Aviva Wealth Management Ltd... Back to the top

No matter who wins, India's stake in Lanka will go up
TOI, Jan 26. NEW DELHI: A closely fought election in Sri Lanka on Tuesday will be watched closely in India, but notwithstanding the result, India's investment in its island neighbour will only increase... Back to the top

Canadians sentenced for attempting to buy, sell arms to Sri Lankan Tamils
Canada.com, jan 25. TORONTO — Two Canadians were sentenced to 25 years in prison Monday for attempting to buy heat-seeking missiles and military assault rifles for Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers rebels... Back to the top

Sri Lanka Tense on Eve of Presidential Election
VOA, 25 January 2010. Sri Lanka's government and the political opposition are trading accusations their respective rivals are preparing to use force to overturn the results of Tuesday's presidential election... Back to the top

Sri Lanka president urges fair vote on poll eve
afp, Jan 25. COLOMBO (AFP) - Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse vowed Monday to ensure the first post-war nationwide election goes off peacefully, as he prepared to face his former army chief after an acrimonious campaign... Back to the top

Election observers condemn violence on eve of Sri Lanka elections
DPA, Jan 25. Colombo – Election monitoring groups reported widespread political violence and coercion ahead of Tuesday's presidential elections in Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Election offices ready for Sri Lanka poll
Xinhua, Jan 25. Sri Lanka's Elections Department commenced initial arrangements ahead of Tuesday's presidential election, officials said on Monday... Back to the top

">Video: Lives of many of the Tamils in Sri Lanka's north remain difficult
Al Jazeera, Jan 25. Mahinda Rajapaksa and Sarath Fonseka led the campaign that finally defeated the separatist Tamil Tigers that ended a quarter-century of war... Back to the top

President pledges fair poll amid accusations of coup
RFI, Jan 25. "The Sri Lanka government calls for a peaceful election, and stands committed to taking whatever steps deemed necessary to ensure the same," said a statement released by Rajapakse's office on the eve of the election... Back to the top

Jaffna reels in the changes under the shadow of war
smh, Jan 25. THE Tamil Tigers called it the Martyrs' Sleeping House - a place to bury the thousands of young cadres who died fighting for a separate Tamil homeland in Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Coup claims cloud Sri Lanka poll
Australian, Jan 25. SRI Lanka's main presidential challenger, Sarath Fonseka, has a force of up to 800 army deserters at his disposal for today's election, the government claimed yesterday amid mounting accusations that both sides were planning poll violence... Back to the top

Sri Lankans caught by election fatigue
xinhua, jan 25. Elections happen far too often in Sri Lanka leading to almost election fatigue... Back to the top

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