Home News Centre calls all-party meeting on Tuesday, Jaishankar and Sitharaman to brief

Centre calls all-party meeting on Tuesday, Jaishankar and Sitharaman to brief

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Centre calls all-party meeting on Tuesday, Jaishankar and Sitharaman to brief

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The Centre has called an all-party meeting on Tuesday over the ongoing political and economic crisis in Sri Lanka, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said today. 

The meeting will be briefed by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Joshi said after the all-party meeting today ahead of the Parliament’s Monsoon Session which begins from Monday.

Joshi also said that the government was open for discussion on all issues under rules and procedures. 

This comes as the neighbouring country’s Parliament held a special session on Saturday to start the process of electing a new president on July 20 following the resignation of Gotabaya Rajapaksa, with four contenders, including acting President Ranil Wickremesinghe joining the race to head the next government that has the arduous task to revive the country’s bankrupt economy.

Rajapaksa, who fled to the Maldives on Wednesday and then landed in Singapore on Thursday, formally resigned on Friday, capping off a chaotic 72 hours in the crisis-hit nation that saw protesters storm many iconic buildings, including the President and the Prime Minister’s residences.

The ruling SLPP has officially announced its backing for Wickremesinghe. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was sworn in as acting President. The 73-year-old politician is currently is the frontrunner though his United National Party (UNP) was routed in the 2020 parliamentary election.

Wickremesinghe has ordered the military and the police to do whatever it takes to ensure order, and defence officials said additional troops and police will be poured to the capital on Monday to bolster security around parliament ahead of the vote.

Sri Lanka is facing its worst economic crisis in seven decades, with a severe foreign exchange shortage hampering the import of essentials including food, fuel and medicines.

The economic crisis also sparked a political crisis in the country after a popular uprising against the government forced Rajapaksa to flee the country and resign as president.

The island nation off the tip of southeast India needs about USD 5 billion in the next six months to cover basic necessities for its 22 million people, who have been struggling with long queues, worsening shortages and power cuts.

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