Rajapaksa Govt Declares Emergency for the Second Time

Story Highlights
  • Rajapaksa declared emergency amidst rising street protests.
  • Trade unions staged strike on Friday.
  • This is the second time the Rajapaksa govt declared emergency.

Colombia: Sri Lankan president Rajapaksa on Friday declared an emergency for the second time giving security forces sweeping charges to deal with escalating anti-govt protests. A spokesperson from the Sri Lanka govt said that the orders were invoked to ensure public order after the trade unions staged a nationwide strike a day ago demanding his ouster.

Earlier during the day, the police fired tear gas and water cannons on students who tried to storm the parliament as the country was halted by a trade union strike. Private buses were off the street. Millions of workers stayed off the job and stood in solidarity with the trade unions.

Months of blackouts and shortages of food and fuel have been reported in the island nation as the govt failed to clear its debts. Public anger has sparked sustained protests demanding the government’s dissolution over its mismanagment of the crisis, the worst since its Independence in 1948.

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