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Sri Lankan prime minister Mahinda Rajapaksa (77) is at the helm of the current economic crisis in the island nation. In his long political career, he served as President of Sri Lanka from 2005 to 2015, as Leader of the Opposition from 2002 to 2004 and 2018 to 2019, and as Minister of Finance from 2005 to 2015 and 2019 to 2021.
Early life and Education
Born in 1945 in Weeraketiya, a town in southern Sri Lanka, Rajapaksa is the second among six brothers (three of whom are also in the national politics) and three sisters. He was first elected as a member of parliament from the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) in 1970 from the Hambantota district. He is an alumnus of Colombo Law College and practised law in the southern town of Tangalle from 1977 to 1994.
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