Finding a Cure

Sri Lankas president was in hectic talks to resolve a dispute with her main ally a day ahead of her minority governments first test in parliament, officials said.
President Chandrika Kumaratunga had expected her junior coalition partner, the Marxist JVP, or Peoples Liberation Front, to accept four portfolios in the cabinet by Monday, but they were insisting on more powers, officials said Tuesday. rn

rn”We expected the issue to be resolved by Monday, but so far the negotiations remain deadlocked,” a source close to Kumaratunga told AFP. “But the president is still very hopeful that it can be resolved.” rn

rnThe JVP holds 39 out of the 105 seats in the Freedom Alliance, whose minority government faces its first test in the 225-member legislature with a vote Thursday for speaker. rn

rnThe JVP boycotted Kumaratungas induction of a 31-member cabinet on April 10 and refused to take up the four portfolios allocated to it until it was given control over river basin development. rn

rnKumaratungas Sri La