For months, this small South Asian country has been grappling with acute shortages of food, fuel and medicine.
prime minister of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned on Monday, his spokesman said, soon after violent clashes between his supporters and anti-government protesters left 78 injured.
Spokesman Rohan Velivita said the 76-year-old official sent his resignation to his younger brother, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, paving the way for a “new unity government”.
Sri Lankan police imposed curfew in the capital Colombo following the clashes. Government supporters attended a meeting that included the intervention of the Prime Minister and the brother of the current President, before a crowd decided to walk towards the cantonments near the Prime Minister’s official residence and the President’s Secretariat, where for a month. Thousands of people ask about the resignation of the executive.
Two witnesses, who requested anonymity, said supporters of Rajapaksa armed with sticks and iron bars attacked dozens of protesters and then broke down several tents in the camp.
“They attacked with sticks, shouting objectionable words,” one of the protesters told reporters.
Sri Lankan police used water cannons and tear gas to disperse the crowd and tightened security in the presidential area to prevent further violence.
Independent since 1948, this tiny island country of 22 million inhabitants in South Asia has been grappling with severe shortages of food, fuel and medicine for months.
After the corona virus epidemic, there was a feeling of economic slowdown Cut in tourism revenue and remittances. Protesters have been demanding the president’s resignation for weeks on charges of causing the crisis.
The country declared a state of emergency last Friday aimed at quelling protests, which, however, intensified over the weekend due to a lack of basic cooking supplies and gas.
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