Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has declared a state of national emergency. The reason is the widespread protest against the deep economic crisis in his country.
The state of emergency gives the president, police and military expanded powers, for example to arrest protesters.
Rajapaksa declared a state of emergency following a demonstration outside his private residence, 14 kilometers south of the capital, Colombo. It started on Thursday night and quickly turned violent. The demonstrators threw stones at the police and set five cars on fire, after which the police fired tear gas. More than 30 protesters and at least 24 police officers were injured and 53 people were arrested.
Several demonstrations are planned across the country this weekend. Sri Lanka is facing a deep economic crisis, accompanied by high inflation and shortages of food and fuel. The island nation enlisted the help of China, India and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
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