Sirisena suspends Parliament

Sri Lanka’s President Maithripala Sirisena on Saturday suspended Parliament, a day after he sacked Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and replaced him with former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, plunging the island nation into political turmoil. Through an extraordinary gazette, President Sirisena said Parliament was prorogued until November 16. The announcement came just as Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe declared he had the majority in Parliament. “Reconvene parliament immediately so that I can prove my majority,” Mr. Wickremesinghe said at a press conference, flanked by Muslim and Malayaha (hill country) Tamil leaders, who are part of his United National Front. “Let us get this controversy out of the way,” he added. Meanwhile, members of the Sirisena-Rajapaksa combine said they too had a majority of “120 plus” in the 225-member House. While a confidence vote in parliament might have put their competing claims to test, Mr. Sirisena’s decision has now deferred the possibility by about two weeks, fanning rumours of cross-overs between the two camps. Beijing’s gesture The Chinese Ambassador in Colombo met Mr. Rajapaksa and conveyed the wishes of his leadership and government, according to Mr. Rajapaksa’s office. Local media reports said the Chinese envoy also met Mr. Wickremesinghe. India is yet to comment on the recent changes in the neighbouring nation.

Source :  https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/sirisena-suspends-parliament/article25350444.ece

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