As tear gas is used on the crowds, protesters stormed the office for Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister.
The prime minister’s office has declared a nationwide emergency and has imposed a curfew in the Western Province of Sri Lanka.
After months of turmoil that culminated in demonstrators converging at the presidential palace, Sri Lanka’s president Gotabayarajapaksa fled the country. He has agreed to resign.
Protesters have taken over several government buildings in recent days to demand that their top leaders resign, expressing their anger at the three-month-old economic crisis.
People have been flocking to the presidential palace to admire the paintings and lie on the pillows-stuffed beds.
Wednesday saw groups of people climbing the wall to enter the office. The crowds cheered them on and waved the Sri Lankan flag.
The police used tear gas to disperse the crowd, but it was unsuccessful and more people marched towards the office.
Bhasura Wickremesinghe (24-year-old student in maritime electrical engineering) said that the president’s escape was a “timid” act.
Continue reading: What’s happening in Sri Lanka?
“I am not celebrating. It’s not worth celebrating. “We have nothing in this country right now.”
With his wife and two guards, Mr Rajapaksa flew out of the country on a military plane bound for the Maldives.
The Sri Lankan parliamentary speaker stated that Ranil Wickremesinghe, president Rajapaksa, has appointed Ranil Wickremesinghe, prime minister, as acting president. This allows him to fulfill his presidential responsibilities.
Protesters have pledged to occupy official buildings until top leaders are removed.
The Sri Lankan parliament agreed to elect a president next week, but they have not been able to agree on the composition of a government that will lift the country from economic and political decline.
The term of Mr Rajapaksa ends in 2024. A new president could be appointed to serve the remainder.
The crisis has not ended with the resignations promised.
Protesters set fire to the private residence of the prime minister at one point.
People are queueing up for hours just to get supplies after the economic crisis in Sri Lanka.