Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa flees to Maldives as protests escalate | Top score

Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has fled to the Maldives as massive protests over the island nation’s economic crisis continue to escalate.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa

Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on Wednesday flew out of the country and landed in the Maldives. Gotabaya Rajapaksa had previously hinted that he would not step down until his family had a safe way out of the country.

His brother, former Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa, is also said to have tried to flee the country to Dubai but was stopped at the airport.

ALSO READ | Sri Lanka’s economic crisis: President Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled as protesters took shelter from the storm

Gotabaya Rajapaksa boarded a military plane late at night and landed at the airport in the Maldivian capital Male. The president fled his country along with 5 family members and 3 staff members.

He had previously delivered a message to the Speaker of Parliament and the Prime Minister to submit his resignation on Wednesday. According to protocol, he needs to submit his resignation letter to the chief justice of Sri Lanka and send a copy to the Prime Minister and Speaker of the National Assembly.

ALSO READ | Sri Lanka Crisis: As Gotabaya flees, protesters swim in President’s pool, flex at his gym | Video

The president has not been seen in public since Friday. Congress will elect his replacement on July 20.

The Rajapaksa family, including former Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, have dominated the politics of the country of 22 million people for years and most Sri Lankans blame them for the current problems.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled his official residence in Colombo on July 9, just before thousands of protesters broke through police barricades and stormed the compound.

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