Tamil votes crucial in Sri Lanka poll

Al Jazeera English

by Al Jazeera English

As campaigning heats up ahead of Sri Lanka's presidential elections, the two main candidates are competing for support from the Tamil community.

Mahinda Rajapaksa, the incumbent, and Sarath Fonseka, the former army chief, are both promising the Tamils swift integration into the Sri Lankan society.

The Tamils make up only 12 per cent of the population, but with the majority Sinhalese believed to be split between the two leading contenders, the Tamils could hold Sri Lanka's political future in their hands.

Al Jazeera's Wayne Hay reports from the capital, Colombo.