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HomeWorldViolent clashes erupt as Sri Lanka plunges into crisis after PM Mahinda Rajapaksa resigns...

Violent clashes erupt as Sri Lanka plunges into crisis after PM Mahinda Rajapaksa resigns amid economic crisis

As per reports, Rajapaksa sent his resignation to his younger brother President Gotabaya Rajapaksa. While the government has appealed to its citizens to help in the crisis, many Sri Lankans also want the President to resign.

Violence has erupted in parts of Sri Lanka after Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned amid economic crisis. Soon, his supporters and those who were protesting against him broke into violent clashes in Colombo. As of now at least 78 people have been injured in the violence. There have been increasing protests over increase in prices and power cuts since past few weeks.

As per reports, Rajapaksa sent his resignation to his younger brother President Gotabaya Rajapaksa. While the government has appealed to its citizens to help in the crisis, many Sri Lankans also want the President to resign.

Protestors have been sitting outside President Rajapaksa’s house since April this year which were attacked by Rajapaksa’s supporters. Police fired tear gas and water cannon on pro-government supporters who breached barricades to attack the protestors.

Mahinda Rajapaksa has appealed to public to exercise restraint and not take to violence. On Friday, a state of emergency was imposed in Sri Lanka which gave tremendous power to the military to arrest and detain anyone. The Defence Ministry on Sunday alleged that the anti-government protestors were behaving in threatening manner and disrupting essential services.

Sri Lanka crisis

Sri Lanka is facing its worst economic crisis since its independence from Britain in 1948 with inflation reaching record high of 17.5% in February 2022. The residents of the island nation are struggling with an acute shortage of food, and cooking gas. Power cuts are frequent and people are seen standing in long queues in the National Capital for buying diesel fuel.

The government, headed by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, has been seeking credit lines from countries such as India, China and even Bangladesh for purchasing milk powder and diesel. The situation is so grim that the central bank is forced to buy oil from Iran by bartering tea leaves.

Crisis worsened after the coronavirus pandemic when the country started struggling after tourism, the prime industry, was badly hit on the island nation. Since government did not have enough foreign reserves, import of many goods was banned. This led to long power cuts and blackouts. In April, Sri Lankan government announced it was defaulting on USD 51 billion of foreign debt.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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