Defector threatens Sri Lankan president’s bid for third term

November 22, 2014 1:47 AM

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COLOMBO // Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa faced a serious setback in his quest for a third term on Friday as his health minister quit to challenge him in upcoming elections.

The defection of Maithripala Sirisena, who is also No 2 in the ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party, poses the biggest threat to Mr Rajapaksa since he came to power nine years go. He is still popular after leading a military campaign to end a 25-year civil war against Tamil Tiger rebels, but the erosion o...

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