Sri Lanka: PM Rajapaksa’s residence set ablaze by protestors

Soon after Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned on May 9, the country has been placed under curfew.

In a major development the residence of the PM in Hambantota, around 350kms from Colombo, was set on fire by the protestors. Clashes broke out between Rajapaksa loyalists and anti-government protestors on Sunday.

This is one of the biggest clashes ever since the economic crisis hit the island country. The protestors set ablaze the memorial for the parents of President Gotabaya Rajapaksha. The houses of three former ministers and two MPs were also torched.

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MP Amarakeerthi Athukorala opened fire at the protestors when his car was blocked in Nittambuwa. He was later found dead, officers said.

Background

Sri Lanka has been facing the worst economic crisis since its independence. The country suffered major blackouts, shortage of food, fuel, and medicines. Months of protests by citizens on the streets finally led to the resignation of its PM as well as the cabinet dissolution.

“I am resigning with immediate effect so that you will be able to appoint an all-party government to guide the country out of the current economic crisis,” the Prime Minister said in the letter, reported news agency Agence France-Presse (AFP).

On Monday the country’s leading liquefied petroleum gas supplier Litro Gas Lanka Limited said that they were unable to supply gas to domestic suppliers until new stocks arrive. There were the only industrial stocks available at the moment.

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