SRI LANKA: Following violent protests in the nation’s capital on Saturday, the country’s parliamentary speaker said that Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the country’s president, would stand down on July 13.
On Saturday in Colombo, protesters broke into the president’s official palace and set fire to the prime minister’s house.
The statement came following months of anti-government demonstrations in the island nation due to the economic crisis.
In a statement released by his office on Saturday night, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe also expressed his willingness to step down to make room for an all-party government.
General Shavendra Silva, the head of the Sri Lankan Army, stated that there is now a chance to address the current political issue peacefully and he asked for cooperation from the populace to keep the country’s peace.
According to Silva, a chance has presented itself to end the current issue amicably. According to the Colombo Gazette news outlet, he pleaded with all Sri Lankans to aid the police and armed forces in maintaining the nation’s peace.
In other news, the IMF stated that it was keeping a close eye on the unfolding events in Sri Lanka and hoped that the political situation would be addressed quickly to allow for the start of negotiations on an IMF-supported programme in the cash-strapped nation.
There were some financial concerns that needed to be resolved during a round of policy-level discussions that the IMF had with Prime Minister Wickremesinghe, who is also the Finance Minister.
The monetary programme aims, according to Central Bank Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe, were completed at the same time.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa also notified Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardene that he will step down from his position on July 13 hours after Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe made the announcement.
The same was what the anti-government demonstrators had been calling for as the nation struggled with the worst economic crisis in its history.