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Sri Lankan minority party pledges not to topple government
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07:48, August 07, 2007

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A Tamil minority political party said Monday that they would not engineer the downfall of the government led by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse despite a decision last week to quit the ministerial positions held by them.

Muttu Sivalingam, a senior member of the Ceylon Workers' Congress (CWC) said "we will not topple the government and we will continue to support the president."

The CWC's five ministers quit Rajapakse's government on Thursday, leaving the government with just 113 seats in the 225- member parliament.

The CWC resignation triggered speculation that the president's 3-year-old government might fall with more defections coming from the government.

The CWC, a trade union and political party for the Tamils of Indian origin in the island's tea plantations, has traditionally supported the main opposition United National Party (UNP).

Having supported the UNP in the 2005 presidential election, they joined the Rajapakse government in 2006.

Sivalingam said that the decision to quit ministerial positions was based on a heated argument with the president's brother Basil Rajapakse, who is a senior presidential adviser.

However, the CWC would continue to sit in the government back benches and extend support.

Source: Xinhua

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