Rajapaksa’s party wins key local election

April 26th, 2009 - 3:12 pm ICT by IANS  

Colombo, April 26 (DPA) President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s ruling party won a key local election in the capital city and its outskirts that was regarded as an endorsement of the Sri Lankan military successes against Tamil rebels in the northern region, vote tallies showed Sunday.
Rajapaksa’s United People’s Freedom Alliance took 68 seats in the 104-member provincial administration encompassing the capital district of Colombo and the adjoining districts of Kalutara and Gampaha.

Rajapaksa’s party campaigned on the success of its military offensive to defeat the rebels of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

Troops have reportedly confined the rebels to a narrow strip of 8 km on the north-eastern coast, as the army says it is in the final stage of destroying the rebel forces in the 25-year conflict.

Rajapaksa is expected to call new presidential elections later this year - two years ahead of schedule - as his party now controls six of the country’s nine provincial councils.

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