NextSharkNextShark.com
Latest Newsletter🍵 No progress seen from Biden AAPI billRead

Article

Sri Lanka president captured on video fleeing as protestors storm Colombo residence

  • President Rajapaksa is seen running and rolling his luggage onto a large navy ship in a recent video.

  • The now-resigned president's escape comes after the storming of his official Colombo residence and the burning of Prime Minister Wickremesinghe’s home.

  • Following a mass resignation of the cabinet, the prime minister and president also resigned within the week.

  • The large-scale takeover by the demonstrators and resignation comes after months of protests on the streets of Sri Lanka and its worst economic crisis in history.

Asian America Daily - in under 5 minutes

Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories, to your inbox daily, for free!

Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive

Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa was captured on video escaping via ship on the day protesters stormed his official Colombo residence. 

In the video, President Rajapaksa is seen running and rolling his luggage onto a large navy ship. His escape comes after the storming of his official Colombo residence and the burning of Prime Minister Wickremesinghe’s home, which occurred on Saturday — now deemed D-Day. The large viral demonstrations took place despite the president’s attempts at a 36-hour state of emergency and ban of social media.

Upon the storming of the residence, Sri Lanka’s 26-member cabinet resigned en masse at midnight. Initially, the exceptions were President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. 

However, Wickremesinghe resigned soon after, stating on Twitter, “to ensure the continuation of the government including the safety of all citizens I accept the best recommendation for the Party Leaders today, to make way for an All-Party Government. To facilitate this I will resign as Prime Minister.”

Following the example, President Rajapaksa confirmed his previous announcement of resignation through Wickremesinghe’s office on Monday. As of this writing, Rajapaksa has yet to appear or speak in public. 

The large-scale takeover by the demonstrators comes after months of protests on the streets of Sri Lanka and its worst economic crisis in history. Inflation in Sri Lanka has risen to above 50 percent, leading to crushing food and energy shortages. It led the country to run their foreign currency reserves into the ground and significantly increase foreign debt. 

Although the government has been in difficult talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a $3 billion bailout – in addition to receiving aid from the World Bank, India and the G7 – the government’s foreign debts total to $51 billion. 

In addition, Sri Lanka police and military have been accused of using violence to push back demonstrations. With at least 55 people injured during protests, there have also been accusations of torture, tear gas use and the application of an “illegal” police curfew. 

 

Feature Image via Public MeterGlobal News

Support our Journalism with a Contribution

Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.

Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.

However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.

We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way.  Thank you for everyone's support. We love you all and can't appreciate you guys enough.

Support NextShark

Mastercard, Visa, Amex, Discover, Paypal