Protests and Pressure Mounts on Sri Lanka President to Resign

Thousands of Sri Lankans marched in the capital calling on the debt-ridden nation’s president to resign over economic paralysis.

The protest included a large number of youngsters who had organized themselves through social media and refuse to accept any political leadership. Many carried signs, saying “You messed with the wrong generation!”, “Go home Rajapaksas” and “We need responsible leadership,” read the placards.

Protesters carrying national flags and placards, with chants and songs, blamed President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and his administration for mismanaging the crisis. He has refused to step down even after most of his Cabinet quit and loyal lawmakers rebelled, while his team prepares to negotiate with international lending institutions.

Sri Lanka faces bankruptcy, with $25 billion foreign debt over the next five years _ nearly $7 billion of which is due this year alone. Talks with the International Monetary Fund are expected later this month, and the government had turned to China and India for emergency loans to buy food and fuel.5/5
For months, Sri Lankans have lined up to buy fuel, cooking gas, food and medicines, most of which come from abroad and are paid for in hard currency. The fuel shortage has caused rolling power cuts lasting several hours a day.

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