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Sri Lanka Crisis: Enraged Protesters Set Rajapaksa Family's Ancestral Home On Fire; 5 Dead So Far

Clashes across the country left at least four dead and over 200 injured as Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa tenders his resignation. There have also been calls for President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to step down.

The island nation of Sri Lanka witnessed its most violent days in the last few weeks as the clashes rendered at least five people dead and over 200 injured. As Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa submitted his resignation to his brother and President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Party loyalists clashed with anti-government protestors.

A ruling party MP died, and several others were injured. By evening, the protestors retaliated and set fire to public transport and destroyed the memorial built for the parents of Mahinda and Gotabaya Rajapaksa, and torched their family home in Hambantota, about 250 km from Colombo.

Skyrocketing Prices Of Essential Commodities

MP Amarakeerthi Athukorala opened fire on the protesting crowd and injured two people blocking his car in Nittambuwa. He was later found dead after trying to take refuge in a nearby building. Mahindra Rajapaksa tweeted that he had tendered his resignation as the Prime Minister to the President, thus paving the way for a new unified government to take charge.

In the last few months, Sri Lanka has witnessed an economic breakdown as the prices of essential goods like milk and fuel skyrocketed, thus making dire food shortages and power outages the triggering points of the turmoil, Hindustan Times reported. . The country's famous cricketers came out in support of the public.

International Concern Over Worsening Situation

As the citizens of the country demand the President's immediate resignation, reports claim that Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who initially blamed international factors for the state of turmoil, is said to remain more isolated lately. Moreover, he also issued a statement inviting all parties in the Parliament to form a United National Front to form the government.

Following the violence in the last 48 hours, the US Secretary of State tweeted that it was closely monitoring the situation in the island nation. Further, the tweet read, "We're deeply concerned by the violence against peaceful protesters & innocent bystanders are urging all Sri Lankans to focus on finding and enabling long-term solutions to the country's economic & political challenges".

While the Sri Lankan government blamed the pandemic for halting its tourism sector, which contributes significantly to the GDP, experts believe economic mismanagement became the trigger point for the current crisis.

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