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Former Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapakse rallied tens of thousands of supporters in a show of strength on Monday even as the parliament's speaker refused to recognise his controversial appointment as prime minister.

A majority in parliament has requested that all changes made have been anti-constitutional and against the traditions.

I wish to emphasize that I am compelled to accept the status that existed previously until such time that the new political alliance prove their majority in Parliament, he added.

Until that vote takes place, a majority of parliamentarians have said they believe the current situation, in which Rajapaksa is acting as prime minister, is illegal, the speaker said.

The Sri lankan parliament was prorogued on Oct 27 and start of the next session was scheduled for November 16 in a political maneuvering by President Maithripala Sirisena that likely to deepened the constitutional and economic crisis in the island nation already reeling under debt payments. On Sunday, Sirisena said parliament would be recalled on November 14.

Therefore, President Sirisena said the United National Party should not worry about that and he through the new government would strengthen Parliament.

He said he fired the prime minister because Wickremesinghe was trying to implement "a new, extreme liberal political concept by giving more priority for foreign policies and neglecting the local people's sentiment".

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According to latest counts, Wickremesinghe has 103 MPs from the 225-seat assembly while Rajapakse and Sirisena have 101. The prime minister can only be dismissed if the Cabinet of ministers is dismissed, the prime minister resigns or the prime minister ceases to be a member of parliament.

Rajapaksa claims he has enough numbers to prove his majority and at least six of Wickremasinghe's men have defected to his side.

On Saturday, the Tamil National Alliance - an ethnic minority Tamil party - said it will support a no-confidence motion to be brought against Rajapaksa, after one lawmaker from their party joined Rajapaksa's government.

Meanwhile, both parties organised public protests on Monday.

The political crisis in Sri Lanka began after Sirisena's broader front United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) announced that it has chose to quit the unity government with Wickremesinghe's UNP. Sirisena has also accused Wickremesinghe's government of not taking seriously an alleged assassination plot against him.

"People praised President Maithripala Sirisena for appointing me as the Prime Minister endorsing the real mandate received at the last Local Government polls", Prime Minister Rajapaksa said.


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