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Sri Lanka author attacked ahead of key polls

Sri Lanka author attacked ahead of key polls

Colombo: Armed men stabbed and injured a writer in Sri Lanka on Thursday, a week after he published a book criticising the main opposition candidate at Saturday's presidential polls, police said.

The attackers stormed the home of Lasantha Wijeratne, who released his book "Wasteful Development and Corruption" last week and gave a copy to ruling party candidate Sajith Premadasa.

"Four men broke into the house and stabbed him in the arm after holding a pistol to his wife's head,"Wijeratne's lawyer Tharaka Nanayakkara told AFP by telephone.

"They smashed furniture before escaping." Nanayakkara said the attackers accused Wijeratne of harming the campaign of Gotabaya Rajapaksa who is believed to be in a close race with Premadasa for the top job.

Gotabaya is the brother of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, during whose decade in power until 2015 at least 14 journalists were killed according to Reporters Without Borders (RSF).

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