Colombo: Former Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapakse on Friday denied allegations that he had siphoned off state funds during his decade-long presidency and held assets worth $18 billion overseas.
Rajapakse’s response came a day after Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said that according to intelligence reports, Rajapaksa had stashed away billions of dollars in foreign countries and was involved in mass corruption, reports Xinhua.
The minister also revealed that Sri Lanka had the backing of four nations to trace these illegal funds and assets owned by Rajapaksa.
Rajapaksa, however, denied the allegations, saying that neither he nor his family held any secret offshore accounts or had any assets overseas.
“In making the statement about my family’s supposed $18 billion fortune, Samaraweera took the precaution of adding that he does not know whether this information is correct or not. By covering himself in that manner, fiction can be passed off as fact,” he said. The ex-president and his brothers were under a corruption probe in the country after his surprise loss in the January presidential election.
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