Fonseka quits, gears up for poll battle | world | Hindustan Times
Today in New Delhi, India
Aug 24, 2017-Thursday
-°C
New Delhi
  • Humidity
    -
  • Wind
    -

Fonseka quits, gears up for poll battle

Sri Lanka's top general, who engineered the defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam after a 25-year war, submitted his resignation on Thursday amid speculation he will run for president.

world Updated: Nov 13, 2009 02:18 IST
Ranga Sirilal

Sri Lanka's top general, who engineered the defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam after a 25-year war, submitted his resignation on Thursday amid speculation he will run for president.

General Sarath Fonseka, the chief of defence staff, is expected to challenge his commander-in-chief, President Mahinda Rajapaksa, in an election which may be held by April.

If Fonseka enters the race, he is expected to weaken Rajapaksa's core voter base and erode the incumbent's present monopoly on claiming political capital from the war victory.

“I gave my retirement papers,” Fonseka told reporters. “I have been serving my country in the past and I will serve the country in future as well.”

When asked whether he planned to run in the election, Fonseka said: “I can’t comment as I am still in uniform. I will decide my future once my retirement comes into effect at the end of this month. I have the same basic right as anybody else.”