Sri Lanka: Protesters storm President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s residence

Source: BBC

Thousands of protesters have stormed President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s residence in the capital of Sri Lanka.

Demonstrators from all over the country marched to Colombo demanding his resignation after months of protests over mismanagement of the country’s economic crisis.

Reports say he has already been moved to a safer location.

The country is suffering rampant inflation and is struggling to import food, fuel and medicine.

Thousands of anti-government protesters travelled in cars, vans and buses to the capital, with officials telling AFP news agency that some had even “commandeered” trains to get there.

They swarmed into Colombo’s government district, shouting slogans against the president and breaking through several police barricades to reach President Rajapaska’s house, a witness told Reuters.

Police fired shots in the air to try and prevent angry crowds from overrunning the residence, but were unable to stop some of the crowd from entering.

Authorities had attempted to stop the demonstration from taking place by imposing a curfew on Friday night. But protesters were undeterred, and the curfew was lifted after civil society groups and opposition parties strongly objected to it.

Sri Lanka has run out of foreign currency reserves and is struggling to import essential goods. Many blame the country’s dire economic situation on President Rajapaksa, and demonstrations have been taking place since March demanding he quit.

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