COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) _ President Chandrika Kumaratunga dissolved the Sri Lankan Parliament on Friday, six days before the end of its six-year term, and scheduled general elections for October, an official spokesman said.

Government spokesman Ariya Rubasinghe gave no reason for the early end of the 225-member assembly. New elections will be held Oct. 10, he said.

Kumaratunga's People's Alliance Party is likely to face a tough challenge from the main opposition United National Party on the issues of ending the Tamil separatist war, inflation and economic hardship that the country's 18.6 million people face due to massive war spending.