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Author: edgeinvest   |   Latest post: Tue, 27 Sep 2022, 8:56 AM

 

Singapore Confirms Former Sri Lanka Leader Rajapaksa Has Left

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(Aug 11): Former Sri Lankan president Gotabaya Rajapaksa has left Singapore on Thursday, the city-state’s Immigration & Checkpoints Authority said in a statement. Rajapaksa had fled to the Southeast Asian country after months of anti-government protests.

The statement gave no other details on the ousted leader’s travel plans. However, Thailand’s government confirmed Wednesday that Rajapaksa is expected to visit the country and does not intend to seek political asylum there.

The Sri Lankan government supports the visit, Thailand’s Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai told local media Wednesday in response to a question about whether Rajapaksa’s presence could cause tension with Sri Lanka’s government. “His allies and many of his colleagues are in the government.”

The former president holds a diplomatic passport, which allows him entry without a visa for 90 days, Thailand’s foreign ministry spokesman Tanee Sangrat had said in a statement.

Rajapaksa fled to Singapore via the Maldives shortly after angry protesters stormed his official residence in the Sri Lankan capital Colombo on July 9. He formally resigned as president after arriving in Singapore on July 14.

Officials in Sri Lanka have said the ousted leader is expected to return but have given few details on when that will happen.

“Former presidents are entitled to certain facilities from Sri Lanka’s government,” cabinet spokesman Bandula Gunewardana said Thursday. He had no information about Rajapaksa’s travel plans or the promises made to the former leader by the government.

Veteran lawmaker Ranil Wickremesinghe, who was elected as the new president by the country’s parliament, is seen as a Rajapaksa ally. He won the election for the top job with the support of lawmakers from the former leader’s political party.

Source: TheEdge - 12 Aug 2022

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