“Rabidly anti-Tamil and Islamophobic Gotabaya Rajapaksa, a man accused of war crimes comes to power in Sri Lanka
’70-year-old former wartime defence secretary, the younger brother of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, has swept the poll with over 60% margins in most Sinhala majority districts while his 52-year-old rival Premadasa has performed well in the minority Tamil-dominated north and east provinces.
Premadasa has garnered over 80% of the vote in Tamil areas, reducing Rajapaksa to less than 5% in some areas in the north….According to observers, with pro-China Rajapaksa in the fray, India is keeping a close watch on the election results as its outcome will have a bearing on the country’s presence in the Indian Ocean region where Beijing is increasingly making its inroads.’
via: The Wire
“Sri Lanka’s former strongman leader on Tuesday blamed unnamed conspirators for carrying out anti-Muslim attacks during his tenure as he tries to woo estranged minority communities in his comeback bid in next month’s parliamentary elections.”
“Sri Lanka is falsely framed as a country solely polarised by ethnic divisions between Sinhala Buddhists and Tamils, and that framing has been shattered by the alliances created with nominations for Presidential Elections one month ago. The election victory, which became possible with the overwhelming support of the minorities, including the Up-Country Tamils, Muslims and Tamils in the North and East, is testament to the potential for the ethnic minorities to work with sections of the majority Sinhala community, when the fate of the country is at stake.”
President Mahinda Rajapaksa lost at least three key Muslim politicians to the joint opposition just weeks ahead of Sri Lanka’s January 8 presidential election, but he may have lost a majority of Muslim votes long before.