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Last Updated: Monday, 22 August 2005, 15:25 GMT 16:25 UK
FM chosen from Sri Lankan dynasty
Anura Bandaranaike
Anura Bandaranaike will remain minister for tourism
Sri Lanka has named the brother of President Chandrika Kumaratunga as the replacement for assassinated foreign minister Lakshman Kadirgamar.

Anura Bandaranaike is a member of a political dynasty going back 50 years and was already a cabinet minister.

The government blamed the 13 August assassination of Mr Kadirgamar on the Tamil Tiger rebels but they have denied any involvement.

The killing put a strain on an already tense peace process.


Mr Bandaranaike will also remain tourism minister but will hand his industry and investment posts to Finance Minister Sarath Amunugama.

Mr Bandaranaike has also previously served as parliament speaker.

The BBC's Dumeetha Luthra in Colombo says Mr Bandaranaike had been the frontrunner for the job and his appointment had been expected for days.

Lakshman Kadirgamar
Lakshman Kadirgamar was a staunch opponent of the Tigers

The Bandaranaike dynasty has played a leading role in the country's politics for half a century.

The president and her brother's parents both served as prime minister.

The killing of Mr Kadirgamar, an ethnic Tamil strongly opposed to the Tigers, has thrown into doubt the country's ceasefire - in effect since February 2002.

Norwegian peace monitors are trying to set up talks between the two sides - who have agreed that the terms of the truce need discussion.

In response to the killing, the government introduced emergency rule, allowing it to deploy troops throughout the country.

The Tigers have been fighting for a separate nation for the minority Tamils in the north and east since 1983.

Five rounds of peace talks were held between the government and Tamil Tigers since the ceasefire.

The Tigers withdrew in April 2003, saying the government had failed to honour pledges on autonomy.

More recently disputes over the administration of the tsunami relief effort and the sharing of international aid have caused tension.

More than 60,000 people have died as a result of the conflict in Sri Lanka since 1983.

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