After the prime minister agreed to resign, protestors in Sri Lanka set fire to his home.

COLOMBO (Sri Lanka) aEUR" On Saturday, protesters stormed the residence of the Sri Lankan prime Minister and set it ablaze.

NewsEditor
NewsEditor
09 July 2022 Saturday 15:18
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After the prime minister agreed to resign, protestors in Sri Lanka set fire to his home.

COLOMBO (Sri Lanka) aEUR" On Saturday, protesters stormed the residence of the Sri Lankan prime Minister and set it ablaze. This was just hours after he announced that he would resign when a government is formed.

Ranil Wickremesinghe's office stated that the protesters entered his Colombo residence on Saturday evening. It was not immediately clear if he was present at the time.

Wickremesinghe stated earlier that he would resign only if all parties have agreed to a new government.

After tens of thousands of protestors marched to the capital, demanding that President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and he resign, a number of leaders from political parties in Parliament called for him and President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to quit.

"Today, in this country, we have a fuel shortage, a food scarcity, and the head of World Food Program is coming here. We have many matters to discuss with IMF. Wickremesinghe stated in a voice message that if the government leaves, there should be another one.

He made it clear that he would not resign before a new government was formed. This angered crowds who moved in close to his home to force him out of office.

Wickremesinghe stated that he suggested to President Rajapaksa to form an all-party government but did not mention Rajapaksa's whereabouts. The formation of a new government was being discussed by the opposition parties in Parliament.

Rajapaksa named Wickremesinghe prime minister in May, in the hope that Wickremesinghe would use his contacts and diplomacy to revive a crumbling economy. As oil prices dropped and fuel and medicine shortages increased, people lost patience.

Many protesters accused Wickremesinghe, of trying to save Rajapaksa from pressure when he had to resign. Every other member of his powerful political family quit the Cabinet.

Sirasa Television, a private company, reported that at most six of its staff members, including four reporters had been hospitalized following beatings by police during a protest near Wickremesinghe.

The Sri Lanka Medical Council is the country's most prestigious professional body. It warned that hospitals in the country were operating with very limited resources and would not be able handle unrest-related mass casualties.

According to the association, the prime minister, president and government will be held accountable for deaths or injuries. It demanded that leaders heed the people's cry and resign to allow an all-party government to take over.

On Saturday, the crowds broke into Rajapaksa's fortified residence. Footage captured people enjoying a swim in the residence's garden pool in a joyful mood. Many people sat on the beds and others drank tea. Rajapaksa, Wickremesinghe had to leave immediately.

It wasn't clear whether Rajapaksa was in his home when the storm erupted. Mohan Samaranayake (government spokesperson) said that he did not have any information on Rajapaksa's movements.

Later, leaders of political parties in Parliament met and decided to ask Rajapaksa to resign. Rauff Hakeem, an opposition lawmaker, said via Twitter that Rajapaksa had resigned and Wickremesinghe had resigned. He stated that a consensus had been reached and that the temporary president of Parliament should be taken over by the speaker of the parliamentary assembly.

As Sri Lanka's leaders attempt to negotiate a bailout deal with the International Monetary Fund, their economy is in serious trouble. People are left without food, fuel, and other essentials due to the economic collapse.

Protests have erupted for months, almost threatening to dismantle the Rajapaksa political family that has ruled Sri Lanka for the majority of the past 20 years.

After violent protests, the president's elder brother was forced to resign as prime minister and he sought safety at a naval base. Protesters blame the Rajapaksa family for creating chaos in Sri Lanka through poor management and corruption allegations.

Security personnel attempted to stop protestors who ran across the lawns of the presidential's seaside office and into the colonial-era building by putting up barriers.

At least 34 people, including two police officers, were injured in the scuffles that occurred when protesters attempted to enter the residence. According to a Colombo National Hospital official, two of the injured are in critical condition and others have minor injuries. He spoke under anonymity because he wasn't authorized to talk to the media.

After an overnight curfew was lifted by police, thousands of protestors flooded the capital. Fuel supplies being scarce, many protesters crowded onto trains and buses to get to the capital, while others rode bicycles or walked.

Rajapaksa was urged to resign by protestors and religious leaders, claiming he had lost the mandate of the people.

Ven said that Ven's claim that he was elected by Sinhala Buddhists is untrue. Omalpe Sobitha is a prominent Buddhist leader. He called on Parliament to immediately convene to elect an interim president, but he said Wickremesinghe didn't have the support of the people.

Wickremesinghe stated last month that the country's economy had collapsed. Wickremesinghe stated that negotiations with IMF were difficult because Sri Lanka is now bankrupt.

Sri Lanka announced in April that it would suspend repayments of foreign loans because of a shortage of foreign currency. The country's foreign debt totals $51 billion, of which $28 billion must be repaid by 2027.

The police had placed a curfew on Colombo and other major urban areas Friday night, but it was lifted Saturday morning after opposition from lawyers and politicians who claimed it was illegal.

U.S. U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka Julie Chung asked for peaceful protests and called on the military and police to give peaceful protestors the space and security they need.

Chung tweeted that "Chaos and force will not fix Sri Lanka's economy or bring the political stability that Sri Lankans require right now."

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