September 27, 2022

Sri Lanka issues ‘shoot-on-sight’ order to troops as chaos continues

2 min read

The Defense Ministry said on Tuesday that after the attack on the senior deputy inspector general of police, its troops had been ordered to shoot anyone who damaged government property or attacked personnel.

The order came after violent protests in the capital, Colombo, in which at least eight people were killed, although it was unclear whether all of the deaths were directly linked to the protests. More than 200 people have been injured in the violence since Monday.

The 22-million-dollar island nation is facing its worst economic crisis since independence in 1948. Prices of daily necessities are rising and there has been a massive power shortage for weeks. Thousands have taken to the streets to protest the government’s alleged mismanagement of the economy.

Of The army had to be saved Outgoing Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned in a pre-dawn operation on Tuesday, just hours after resigning after clashes between pro- and anti-government protesters. A senior security source told CNN that the army was called in after protesters tried to break into the prime minister’s private temple premises twice a night.

His resignation was shown on live television footage on Monday, with government supporters armed with sticks, beating protesters in several places across the capital and tearing down and burning their tents. According to eyewitnesses, speaking to CNN, dozens of homes across the country were set on fire during the violence.

According to the CNN team, armed forces were deployed to disperse the protesters, while video footage showed police firing tear gas and water cannons.

A nationwide curfew has been imposed till Thursday.

However, it is unclear whether the curfew and the resignation of the Prime Minister will be enough to cover up the growing instability in the country.

Many protesters say their ultimate goal is to force President Gotabaya Raja Pakse – the prime minister’s brother – to resign, something he has so far shown no signs of doing.

In a statement issued Tuesday, the European Union and its 27 member states condemned the “recent vicious attack on peaceful protesters” and called on authorities to investigate.

Anti-government protesters protest near the president's office in Colombo on May 10.

“The European Union regrets the large number of casualties, including that of a Member of Parliament,” the statement said. “The European Union recognizes the importance of protecting the democratic rights of all citizens, and focuses on solutions that will address the major challenges facing Sri Lanka at this time.”

Sri Lanka’s neighbor India has also added weight.

“As Sri Lanka’s closest neighbor, with its historic ties, India is a staunch supporter of its democracy, stability and economic recovery,” a Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Tuesday.

“In keeping with our neighbor’s first policy, India has provided over $ 3.5 billion in aid to the people of Sri Lanka this year to help them overcome their current difficulties. India has always been in the best interests of the people of Sri Lanka. Will continue to guide. Through the democratic process. “

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