Monitoring group fears military presence may lower voter turnout Thursday in Sri Lankan north

January 6, 2015 12:45 PM

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Monitoring group fears military presence may lower voter turnout Thursday in Sri Lankan north

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa laughs during his final public rally for the presidential elections in Kesbewa, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) southeast of Colombo, Sri Lanka, Monday, Jan. 5, 2015. A confident Rajapaksa had called the election two years ahead of schedule, hoping to win a third six-year term before voters' memories faded of the defeat of the Tamil Tiger rebels. But an internal revolt now threatens his hold on power with Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena, a close Rajapaksa aide and No. 2 in the president's Freedom Party, defecting and announcing he would run as an opposition candidate in Thursday's election. Poster reads "Leader of the common.” (AP Photo/Sanka Gayashan) (The Associated Press)

Sri Lanka's main opposition presidential candidate Maithripala Sirisena greets his supporters as he arrives for the final day of the election campaign rally in Kalutara, on the outskirts of Colombo, Sri Lanka, Monday, Jan. 5, 2015. President Mahinda Rajapaksa is seeking a third term in office in Jan...

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