Posts By Dinesha de Silva
August 26, 2015
After a hotly contested campaign, Parliamentary elections in Sri Lanka concluded peacefully last week in a vote hailed by local and international observers as one of the most free, fair, and peaceful in Sri Lanka’s recent history. The 70 percent turnout fell short of last January’s 82 percent, possibly due to the monsoon rain that arrived two hours before polls closed on Monday, August 17.
January 14, 2015
This past week the citizens of Sri Lanka demonstrated their extraordinary resilience by voting overwhelmingly for a new president. Belying all fears of large-scale violence on election day, the voting process was exceptionally smooth, with a record turnout of 81.5 percent at the polling centers. Just one month ago, it seemed that incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa would coast to an easy victory and retain his authoritarian hold on Sri Lanka’s electorate once again. But his electoral calculations went awry with the emergence of a worthy rival from his own camp, former Minister of Health, Maithripala Sirisena, who was put forward in November as the “common candidate” by a suddenly rejuvenated opposition.
August 6, 2014
In June 2014, almost five years after the end of the longstanding civil war in Sri Lanka, violent clashes broke out in several small towns in the south, including Aluthgama, Beruwela, and Dharga Town. The tensions were fueled by reports that a Muslim man had allegedly attacked…