Sri Lanka ruling party signs key deal with partners

Colombo, July 12 (IANS) Sri Lanka’s ruling United National Party (UNP) on Sunday signed a pact with its partners in a newly formed political alliance to contest parliamentary elections next month.

The UNP signed the accord with its new partners, formally creating the United National Front (UNF) for Good Governance.

UNP leader and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, UNP chairman Malik Samarawickreme and UNP general secretary Kabir Hasheem signed the agreement on behalf of the UNP.

The others who signed the accord included the National Heritage Party, also known as the Jathika Hela Urumaya, the opposition Sri Lanka Freedom Part breakaway faction and civil society members.

The UNP had on Saturday proposed and later agreed to register the United National Front after the Aug 17 election.

The UNP, at a special convention, agreed on the proposal to also contest the general election next month under the elephant symbol by including members from other political parties who have extended support to it.

Wickremesinghe will be the prime ministerial candidate.

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