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Sri Lanka's political chaos persists as crisis talks go on

Posted at 4:37 PM, Jul 11, 2022

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — A political vacuum continues in Sri Lanka, with opposition leaders yet to agree on who should replace its roundly rejected leaders, whose residences are occupied by protesters angry over the country's deep economic woes.

Embattled President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has agreed to resign, according to the speaker of parliament.

Rajapaksa will reportedly step down on Wednesday.

Opposition leaders are in talks to form an all-party government, an urgent requirement of the bankrupt nation to continue discussions with the International Monetary Fund.

One lawmaker says main opposition leader Sajith Premadasa and a former minister have been proposed for president and prime minister.

In a video statement Monday, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe reiterated that he would stay on until a new government is in place.

On Sunday, protesters were pictured swimming in a pool in the president's official residence a day after it was stormed in Colombo.

Sri Lanka’s opposition political parties met Sunday to work on an agreement for a new government.

This is considered to be the country’s most chaotic day in months of political turmoil.

On Saturday, protesters stormed both officials’ homes and set fire to one of the buildings in a rage over the nation’s economic crisis.

Rajapaksa hasn’t been seen or heard from since Saturday and his current location is unknown.

However, on Sunday, his office said that Rajapaksa ordered the public distribution of a cooking gas consignment immediately.