Sri Lanka’s ex-army chief joins ruling political party

Colombo, Feb 3 (IANS) Sri Lanka’s former army commander Sarath Fonseka joined hands with the ruling United National Party (UNP) on Wednesday.

Fonseka, leader of a local political front – the Democratic Party – signed a collective agreement with UNP leader and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe at a ceremony here, Xinhua reported.

Political sources said Fonseka, who failed to secure a parliamentary seat in last year’s parliamentary elections, was now tipped to receive a ministerial portfolio and would join the government in parliament through a national list seat in the coming weeks.

Fonseka was appointed the country’s first Field Marshal last year by President Maithripala Sirisena.

He was army commander when government troops defeated Tamil Tiger rebels in May 2009, ending a 30-year civil conflict in the island nation.

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