The civil unrest in Sri Lanka has reached historic proportions in recent days, as protests against the country’s administration over the economic crisis continue. Mahinda Rajapaksa (76), the Sri Lankan Prime Minister who resigned on Monday, is facing arrest for instigating violence that caused at least eight lives.
Here’s a short rundown of what’s going on in Sri Lanka:
1. Supporters of Mahinda Rajapaksa battled with anti-government protestors, who demanded his departure over Sri Lanka’s greatest economic crisis, which has resulted in acute food, fuel, and medical shortages, as well as protracted power outages.
2. Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned on Monday, but unrest erupted on the island country shortly thereafter. Protesters set fire to the ancestral house of the politically powerful Rajapaksa family in Hambantota soon after his resignation. Several ministers’ and ex-ministers’ residences were also assaulted and set ablaze.
3. On Tuesday, the Sri Lankan Ministry of Defence directed the Army, Air Force, and Navy to open fire on anybody plundering public property or causing injury to others. Almost 250 people have been injured in Colombo and other regions of the nation as a result of the violence.
4. Protesters set fire to Prime Minister Mahinda’s house in Kurunegala, while a crowd also burned the D A Rajapaksa Memorial in Medamulana, Hambantota, which was built in commemoration of Mahinda and Gotabaya’s father.
5. The Sri Lankan government has imposed a statewide curfew and has deployed troops in Colombo, the country’s capital.
6. Following the attack on Rajapaksa’s and other politicians’ residences, suspicion arose that they had fled to India. The Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka dismissed such rumors as ‘fake and plainly untrue’ on Tuesday. On Tuesday, Mahinda Rajapaksa and his family were said to have evacuated their official house and sought refuge at a military installation in Trincomalee.
7. According to reports, anti-government protestors have built up a checkpoint on the road leading to Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport to prevent the Rajapaksa family and its allies from departing the country.
8. The Speaker of the Sri Lankan Parliament requested on Tuesday that embattled President Gotabaya Rajapaksa reconvene the House this week to discuss the current situation, which is characterized by unprecedented violence and widespread protest against the government over the country’s worst economic crisis in decades.
9. On Tuesday, Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa asked people to refrain from ‘violence and deeds of vengeance’ against fellow residents and committed to solving the country’s political and economic crises.
10. Due to settlement issues, the Colombo Stock Exchange has declared Tuesday a trading holiday, nearly a month after remaining closed for a week during Sri Lanka’s worst economic crisis.