The President of Sri Lanka again declares a state of emergency
President Rajapaksa’s spokesman said the leader activated the tough law to “ensure public order”, after shops and transport systems were closed and unions accused he caused an unprecedented economic crisis.
On the morning of May 6, police used tear gas and water cannon to disperse groups of student protesters who were trying to storm the parliament building demanding Rajapaksa’s resignation.
Declaring a state of emergency allows security forces to detain suspects for a longer period without a court order, and allows the deployment of the military to assist police in maintaining order.
Earlier, President Rajapaksa declared a state of emergency on April 1, after thousands of protesters tried to storm his residence in the capital. That emergency order lasts until April 14. After that, the protests continued to increase.
The state of emergency was declared this time as thousands of protesters were gathering outside the ocean-facing office of President Rajapaksa, while several small groups tried to break into the homes of several government officials.
About 85,000 police are being mobilized to protect all ruling party MPs, but they say the force is being stretched and are calling for an increase in numbers.
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