Monday 23rd of May 2022

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Sri Lankan President names new PM amid unrest

 COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's embattled President Gotabaya Rajapaksa replaced his brother as prime minister after he resigned following a series of violent confrontations between his supporters, and anti-government protesters.

The new premier, Ranil Wickremesinghe, has already served in the office five times. Wickremesinghe, who has never completed a full term in office, took his oath before the president at a ceremony in the president’s office on Thursday.

"A cabinet is likely to be appointed today," Sudewa Hettiarachchi, a spokesman for the president said.

The 73-year-old premier will be tasked with navigating Sri Lanka through the worst economic downturn in its history.



 Mahinda Rajapaksa, the president's brother, resigned as prime minister on Monday after his supporters attacked anti-government demonstrators.

At least nine people were killed and over 200 injured in chaos in past few days.

Sporadic violence and arson attacks continue in the country. Mobs have set alight dozens of homes belonging to ruling-party politicians around the country in recent days.

But security forces patrolling in armored personnel carriers with orders to shoot looters on sight have largely restored order.

A curfew was lifted Thursday morning -- only to be reimposed after a six-hour break allowing people to stock up on essentials.

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