August 12, 2022

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President flees nation with Navy jet amidst financial disaster protests

Gotabaya Rajapaksa

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has fled Sri Lanka on a navy jet, amid mass protests over its financial disaster.

The nation’s air pressure confirmed the 73-year-old flew to the Maldives together with his spouse and two safety officers.

They arrived within the capital, Male, at round 03:00 native time (22:00 GMT), BBC Sinhala understands.

Mr Rajapaksa’s departure ends a household dynasty that has dominated Sri Lanka for many years.

The president had been in hiding after crowds stormed his residence on Saturday, and had pledged to resign on Wednesday 13 July.

A supply advised the BBC that Mr Rajapaksa won’t stay within the Maldives and intends to journey on to a 3rd nation.

His brother, former Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa, has additionally left Sri Lanka and is alleged to be heading to the US.

As Sri Lankans awoke to the information, hundreds of individuals took to the streets of the capital, Colombo. Many gathered at Galle Face Inexperienced, the town’s fundamental protest website. Some listened to fiery speeches at a makeshift stage arrange for strange folks to take the mic.

Punctuated by cries of “Victory to the wrestle”, the rallying cry of the protest motion, audio system railed in opposition to a authorities and the leaders they really feel have failed them.

Some demonstrators have been livid about Mr Rajapaksa’s departure, seeing an absence of accountability.

“We don’t prefer it. We wish to maintain him. We wish our a refund! And we wish to put all of the Rajapaksas in an open jail the place they’ll do farm work,” stated protester GP Nimal.

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However 23-year-old college pupil Reshani Samarakoon advised the BBC that the previous president’s exile supplied “hope that sooner or later we will ultimately turn into a developed nation, economically and socially”.

Sri Lankans blame President Rajapaksa’s administration for his or her worst financial disaster in a long time.

For months they’ve been fighting day by day energy cuts and shortages of fundamentals like gas, meals and medicines.

The chief, who enjoys immunity from prosecution whereas he’s president, is believed to have wished to flee overseas earlier than stepping all the way down to keep away from the opportunity of arrest by the brand new administration.