August 16, 2022

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Sri Lankan opposition has begun work on forming a new government

Sri Lankan opposition has begun work on forming a new government

Sri Lanka needs a new government after both President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe announced their resignations on Saturday. This came after several months of demonstrations against the authorities as a result of the economic crisis in the country.

On Sunday, several ministers in the government also chose to resign. The opposition’s goal is to form a broad coalition government.

On Saturday, the capital, Colombo, witnessed mass demonstrations and the storming of the presidential palace. On Sunday, protesters were still present at the palace, and photos show them relaxing and enjoying in its opulent surroundings.

blames Russia

Sri Lanka’s economic crisis is the country’s worst since independence in 1948. The United Nations has warned that the country is facing a serious humanitarian crisis, saying that more than three-quarters of the population have reduced their food intake due to food shortages in the country.

In June, the government halted all fuel sales in Sri Lanka, saying the country was about to run out of fuel.

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said on Sunday that the Russian blockade of Ukraine’s grain exports may have contributed to the situation in Sri Lanka.

We see the result of Russian aggression against Ukraine everywhere. It may have contributed to the situation in Sri Lanka, Blinken said, and we are concerned about the kind of repercussions it might have around the world.

Sleeping in the prime minister’s house

It is not known where President Rajapaksa was on Sunday. A statement from his office to begin immediate distribution of cooking gas indicates that he is still in business.

He is set to remain in office until Wednesday, to give the opposition time to find a sustainable solution to the political uproar.

In addition to the presidential palace, the demonstrators also took over the official residence of Prime Minister Wickremesinghe. There are pictures showing protesters cooking, playing board games and sleeping on large sofas.

Protesters set fire to Wickremesinghe’s private home on Saturday.

(© NTB)

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