Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the president of Sri Lanka, resigns after leaving for Singapore

Conflict in Sri Lanka: Rajapaksa, who had pledged to step down on Wednesday, instead nominated Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe as acting president hours after leaving for the Maldives, exacerbating the political crisis and sparking new demonstrations.

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State media reported on Thursday that Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the president of Sri Lanka, has resigned by email to the speaker. The President and his wife had already flown into Singapore. In response to popular outcry over his government’s poor handling of the economy, Rajapaksa fled the country and entered Singapore on a “private visit,” according to Singapore. He did not ask for refuge in Singapore.

In response to a backlash from the populace over his administration’s handling of the nation’s economy, the 73-year-old President escaped to the Maldives on a military jet early on Wednesday along with his wife and two security personnel.

Rajapaksa, who had pledged to step down on Wednesday, instead named Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe as acting president hours after leaving for the Maldives. This escalated the political crisis and set off a new round of protests on the island nation.

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Thousands of protestors stormed Rajapaksa’s official mansion on Saturday, accusing him of causing the nation’s crippling economic crisis and demanding that he leave office on Wednesday. Rajapaksa, who is immune from prosecution while serving as president, left the nation without quitting in order to avoid being detained by the new administration.

The Speaker was instructed to name a prime minister who is acceptable to both the government and the opposition on Wednesday by Prime Minister Wickremesinghe, who is now serving as Acting President.

The brothers of President Rajapaksa, ex-prime minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and ex-finance minister Basil Rajapaksa, promised the Supreme Court on Thursday through their attorneys that they would remain inside the nation until the Fundamental Rights petition brought against them is heard on Friday, according to the Daily Mirror.

The 22 million-strong nation of Sri Lanka is experiencing the worst economic crisis in seven decades, leaving millions of people unable to afford basic necessities like food, medicine, and fuel.