Sri Lanka's new parliament convenes

2010-04-23 09:01 BJT

Sri Lanka's first elected parliament since the end of its decades long civil war, has held its inaugural session.

Chamal Rajapaksa, the elder brother of President Rajapaksa, was sworn in as the speaker of the country's 7th parliament on Thursday morning. 225 newly elected lawmakers were also sworn in.

Speaker of the Sri Lankan Parliament and President Mahinda Rajapaksa's elder brother Chamal Rajapaksa presides over the house as ruling party members, background, and opposition party members, foreground, sit during the commencement of Parliament in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Thursday, April 22, 2010. Sri Lanka's former army chief Sarath Fonseka on Thursday used his first opportunity to address Parliament as a newly elected lawmaker to demand his release from detention.(AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena)
Speaker of the Sri Lankan Parliament and President Mahinda Rajapaksa's 
elder brother Chamal Rajapaksa presides over the house as ruling party
members, background, and opposition party members, foreground, sit 
during the commencement of Parliament in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Thursday, 
April 22, 2010. (AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena)

Meanwhile, former Army Commander General Fonseka, who had been in military custody since February 8th, was escorted by military police, to make his maiden parliamentary appearance. Fonseka is accused of interfering in politics while still being in the military.

The government has also alleged that Fonseka mishandled funds for the Army, as Chairman of the Tender Board. The former general has denied the charges and used the occasion to demand his freedom.

Editor: Du Xiaodan | Source: