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Wickremesinghe challenges Rajapaksa to topple government

Press Trust of India  |  Colombo 

Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe today challenged to topple the current government, days after the former president expressed his intent to make a political comeback by bringing down the this year.

"I will be going next week to for one week giving Mahinda time to bring the down," Wickremesinghe told reporters here.

Rajapaksa last week has warned that the unity headed by the President Maithripala Sirisena and Wickremesinghe could be toppled in 2017 through a roll of the head count in the national parliament.

Wickremesinghe said that the from today was launching its development drive with opening up factories and announcing its new development strategies.

Initially, an agreement is to be finalised with for setting up of a special economic zone (SEZ) in Hambantota, deep southern district.

"We have signed the frame work agreement and finished. Now we are doing the concessionary agreement. It will be signed soon. Both sides are now arguing about the tax concessions," Wickremesinghe said.

"On the Hambantota port we will get 1 billion (dollars) , the whole loan can be written off," he said.

Rajapaksa leads the local protests to the move to lease the port's 80 per cent stake to for a USD 1.3 billion settlement.

He said he was not opposed to the setting up of the industrial park but opposes the move to give 15,000 acres of lands of the locals to the Chinese.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, January 02 2017. 15:07 IST