Ensure peaceful and constitutional transfer of power in Sri Lanka, urges UN Resident Coordinator |

In statement released on Friday on behalf of the UN in Sri Lanka, Resident Coordinator Hanaa Singersay it was “It is imperative that the transition of power be accompanied by broad and inclusive consultation within and outside Parliament.”

According to news reports, Mr Rajapaksa has offered to resign after leaving the country and arriving in Singapore, his first flight to the Maldives on Wednesday after tens of thousands of protesters stormed his official residence in the capital. Colombo earlier this week.

The former president and his family have been blamed by protesters for failing to avert a major economic crisis that has caused severe shortages of food, fuel and medical supplies and has left the country alone. is on the verge of economic devastation. Monetary Fund (IMF) over an emergency relief package.

Rajapaksa’s resignation led to jubilant celebrations on the streets of the capital and marked the end of nearly 20 years of rule by the powerful family.

Despite being relatively calm on Friday morning, there were long lines supposedly once again to buy gas.

Address the root causes

In her statement, Ms. Singer reiterated that the Secretary-General António Guterres highlighted the importance of addressing the root causes of current unrest and people’s grievances.

Dialogue with all stakeholders is the best way to address concerns about fulfilling the aspirations of all Sri Lankans,” she said.

Refrain from demonstrations

She added that authorities now need to “ensure that in maintaining law and order, security forces exercise restraint and operate in strict compliance with human rights principles and standards.”

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe – who has held that post a total of six times – was sworn in as interim president on Friday, and Sri Lankan MPs will begin the process of choosing a new president on Saturday. , before the official vote on July 20.

Mr Wickremesinghe’s residence was also occupied by protesters earlier in the week and then his office, but he is said to have pledged to act quickly to restore the presidency in line with the Constitution. law, and the protesters dispersed peacefully, with businesses reopening in the capital. The overnight curfew was lifted, although soldiers took control of checkpoints around the city.

Long-term and short-term support

Singer said the United Nations stands ready “to support the Government and people of Sri Lanka, to address immediate and long-term needs”.

Many of Sri Lanka’s crises have been exacerbated by COVID-19 The pandemic saw the collapse of the vital tourism industry, which provides foreign currency for imported fuel and medical supplies, and rocked a supply chain crisis caused by the Ukraine war.

Last month, the World Food Program and the United Nations launched a Joint Humanitarian Needs and Priorities Plan, asking for more than $47 million to assist the roughly 1.7 million people worst affected. .

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