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Leading News from Sri Lanka::

* Sri Lanka ruling party claims victory at parliamentary polls
Fri, Apr 9, 2010, 11:45 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Apr 09, Colombo: Sri Lanka's governing party, United People's Freedom Alliance today claimed victory in the parliamentary polls held Thursday with a clear majority over the two main opposition parties.

Ruling party spokesman and transport minister Dullas Alahaperuma said the people have granted the UPFA an outstanding victory at the general election in a manner unanticipated even by the creator of the proportional voting system.

Speaking to the state-run radio, Minister Alahaperuma said judging by the results released so far the ruling party may gain over 136 parliamentary seats. However, the ruling party may not get the two-third majority they expected from the voters, the Minister acknowledged.

"The President requested a strong parliament from the people. In response voters have displayed their heartfelt agreement," the Minister said.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa urged the public to give the ruling party a two-third majority to bring the necessary constitutional reforms.

The Minister noted that this time the UPFA MPs got elected from Jaffna district for the first time.

Thursday's parliamentary polls were marked with a low voter turn-out of about 55%.

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