A crowd took over the residence of the Sri Lankan president to demand his resignation

A crowd took over the residence of the Sri Lankan president to demand his resignation

The crowd took over the presidential residence and other public buildings. AFP photo.

thousands of protesters entered this Saturday official residence of the president of Sri Lanka for demand his resignationa request joined by the main opposition party, accusing him of being responsible for the economic crisis and product shortages plaguing the South Asian country.

The private channel Sirasa TV showed images of a huge crowd breaking into the presidential palace in the capital Colombo, while videos of the protesters already inside the place circulate on social networks.

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled earlier and was ‘escorted to a secret location’ by the army, indicated a Defense source that for security reasons did not reveal the location

After taking the presidential residence, another group of protesters entered the president’s offices, also in the capital, and a third concentration is right outside the country’s Central Bank, the Europa Press news agency reported.

sri lanka traverses the worst economic crisis since independence from the UK in 1948 and it suffers from shortages of fuel, food and medicine due to the lack of foreign currency, which is compounded by high inflation.

This island country of 22 million people, located to the south of India, has been experiencing months of power cuts, long queues to buy fuel and record price hikes, prompting frequent demonstrations and mass riots.

The government declared a moratorium on its external debt for 51,000 million dollars and, according to its authorities, needs about 6,000 million dollars in aid from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and countries such as India and China to get ahead during the next six months.

In the streets of Colombo, hundreds of thousands of people today participate in the protests that were initially led by the country’s Buddhist monks and supported by civil associations, artists, teachers, writers and other professionals.

The country’s prime minister and former rival of the president, Ranil Wickremesinghe, called an emergency meeting to discuss the situation.

The main opposition party, United People’s Power (SJB), which does not recognize the prime minister either, announced that it will not participate in the meeting and demanded the resignation of the authorities.

The association of the Sri Lanka Bar Association, one of the most prominent civil organizations in the country, also asked the president to resign

Likewise, the executive committee of the association demanded the prime minister, as well as his Council of Ministers and the Parliament, to take immediate measures to guarantee the political stability of the country.

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