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International relations

India dragged into Sri Lanka's leadership crisis

Sirisena's move to fire PM partly seen as pushback against New Delhi

A poster in Colombo shows Sri Lanka's newly appointed Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, left, with President Maithripala Sirisena on Oct. 28.   © Reuters

BANGKOK -- Sri Lanka is on a knife edge after President Maithripala Sirisena abruptly sacked Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Friday, a move seen partly as a reaction to India's behind-the-scenes maneuvering.

Sirisena engineered what some experts have called a "coup" and installed former political foe Mahinda Rajapaksa as the new prime minister. Back in January 2015, Sirisena defeated the incumbent Rajapaksa in a presidential election, after which the latter claimed that India had helped to oust him.

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