Sri Lanka: Presidential Secretariat Begins Operations After 100 Days of Unrest

Anti-government protestors had blocked the entrance of the building on 9 April.
The Quint
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Colombo: Protestors outside Sri Lankas Presidential Secretariat amid worsening economic crisis, at Galle Face in Colombo, Saturday, July 9, 2022.

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(Photo: PTI)

)<div class="paragraphs"><p>Colombo: Protestors outside Sri Lankas Presidential Secretariat amid worsening economic crisis, at Galle Face in Colombo, Saturday, July 9, 2022.</p></div>

The Presidential Secretariat in the Sri Lankan capital of Colombo reopened and continued operations after seeing a hundred days of unrest on Monday, 25 July.

Anti-government protestors had blocked the entrance of the building on 9 April, subsequently storming and occupying it on 9 July.

On Monday, visuals showed the government office reopening amidst heavy police presence, with officials saying that the employees marked their presence in the building.

Sri Lankan soldiers and police personnels had raided the anti-government protest camp and started to pull down tents early on 22 July. The crackdown happened hours before the protestors were due to vacate the site, and a day after Ranil Wickremesinghe swore-in as the new president of Sri Lanka.

Some journalists were beaten by security forces and at least 50 protestors have been injured, they said.

Many demonstrators expressed their refusal to accept Wickremesinghe as the new president, holding him partly responsible for the country's unprecedented economic and political crisis.

The Ongoing Crisis & The Public Sentiment 

The country of 22 million people is going through the worst politico-economic crisis in seven decades. With food and fuel prices soaring, millions have been struggling to avail essential services in the country.

Amid the wave of anti-government sentiment gripping the island nation, the people have directed their ire towards the Rajapaksas, accusing them of rampant corruption and mishandling of the economy.

Former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled the country, and resigned earlier this month, after seeing weeks of popular uprising against him.

On 11 July, Wickremesinghe's private residence in Colombo was set on fire by protesters, hours after he announced that he will resign from his post of prime minister.

The island nation held a tripartite contest for the post of president, during which Parliamentarians cast their votes through a secret ballot.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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