On Thursday night, members of the security forces cleared the protesters from government offices in the capital, Colombo. Sri Lanka’s new Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardene was sworn in on Friday in such a chaotic situation. News from BBC, Reuters and AFP
Security forces raided the presidential office occupied by protesters at night.
Budhika Aberatne, a 34-year-old protester, said, “They (security forces) beat us brutally. This is not democracy. President Ranil doesn’t know what democracy is.
The protestors have announced to continue the movement even in such circumstances.
Vasant Summersinghe, a businessman and trade union leader who participated in the protest, said that people want a change in the entire political system.
Sri Lankan police spokesman Nalin Thaladua told Reuters about the operation that the protesters had no legal right to occupy the president’s office. Members of the army, police and special branches of the police took part in the joint operation to evacuate them from there.
Sri Lankan opposition leaders and Western countries have criticized Ranil’s government for its crackdown on protesters. Leader of the opposition Sajith Premadasa tweeted, “This is a manifestation of the arrogance of the government.
U.S. Ambassador to Colombo Julie Chung tweeted, “The United States is concerned about the midnight raid.”
British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Sarah Halton said on Twitter, “We are concerned about the use of force.” Everyone should realize the right to peaceful protest.’
Various countries and organizations including the Canadian government, the European Union (EU), Amnesty International, and the Bar Association of Sri Lanka have condemned the use of force on the protesters. At that time, the country’s President Ranil, senior army officers, legislators and government officials were present.
Ranil and Dinesh were schoolmates. He advocated state control over the economy.
They continued their agitation demanding Gotabaya’s resignation. Gotabaya fled the country and resigned this month in the face of the protesters’ intransigence.
After taking over as President and Prime Minister, Ranil-Dinesh now has to work to take care of Sri Lanka which is in shambles. I am a friend of the people.