Sri Lankan government supporters clashed with opposition activists protesting the arrest of their defeated presidential candidate Sarath Fonseka.

Thousands of opposition demonstrators gathered in front of the Supreme Court in Colombo Wednesday, when they were confronted by ruling-party activists who pelted them with stones.

Police stepped in to break up the clashes.  Witnesses say several people were wounded.

Opposition supporters are demanding the release of Fonseka, the former chief of the armed forces, who was arrested Monday on charges of conspiring against the government.

Fonseka lost last month's election to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, but the retired general and his allies allege the polls were rigged.  The Sri Lankan election commissioner said there is no evidence of any tampering.

On Tuesday, Mr. Rajapaksa dissolved parliament to clear the way for parliamentary elections to be held in early April.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and AP.