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Sri Lanka: President announces his resignation to Parliament by email

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He leaves room. Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa resigned on Thursday July 14 from Singapore, where he had just arrived. The resignation letter, emailed to the Speaker of Parliament, was forwarded to the country’s Attorney General to review the legal aspects before being formally accepted, according to the parliamentary official’s spokesman, Indunil Yapa.

The head of state had fled his residence on Saturday, stormed by demonstrators who blame him for his mismanagement at a time when the country is going through the most serious economic crisis in its history. He had managed to leave the country on Wednesday in the direction of the Maldives, from where he took a plane to Singapore on Thursday.

In Colombo, the demonstrators ended the occupation of public buildings while promising to continue to put pressure on power. Witnesses saw dozens of people leave the Prime Minister’s offices as armed security forces entered. Armored personnel carriers patrolled parts of the capital under curfew.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa had promised to resign on Wednesday but no announcement had been made so far. After a day’s stopover in the Maldives, he flew to Singapore with his wife and two bodyguards on a Saudia commercial flight. They were escorted onto the plane a few minutes before takeoff.

Singapore will not be his final destination. The city-state clarified that the resigning president was on a private visit. “He did not apply for asylum and no asylum was granted to him. Singapore does not generally accept asylum applications”said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a press release.

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