The U.S. today dismissed Sri Lanka’s charge that it had provided financial support to Sarath Fonseka during the January 26 presidential polls and asked Colombo to ensure safety of those who had supported the defeated opposition presidential candidate.

“There is no truth to the Sri Lankan Defence Secretary’s claims that the U.S. provided financial support to the opposition candidate in Sri Lanka’s presidential election,” a U.S. Embassy statement said here.

“As noted in previous Embassy statements, the U.S. backed no candidate but strongly supported a free, fair, and credible democratic process,” the statement said.

“In that spirit, we now urge the Sri Lankan Government to protect the rights of those who supported the opposition or other candidates in the election and to ensure the safety and security of representatives of the press. The free expression of opinion and peaceful participation in the political process are fundamental democratic rights, which all citizens of Sri Lanka should enjoy,” it said.

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