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Sri Lankan police block students heading towards president’s home

Sri Lankan police block students heading towards president’s home

dpa
Colombo
Sri Lankan police used water cannons and tear gas to disperse a student demonstration trying to make its way towards the president’s house in the capital on Thursday.
Sri Lanka has been hit by an unprecedented economic crisis over the past few months resulting in severe fuel, gas and medicine shortages and leading to widespread calls for President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to step down.
Police obtained a court order preventing the more than 1,000 students from entering the area, but the demonstrators ignored the ruling.
The students eventually dispersed after tear gas and water cannons were used, police spokesman Nihal Thalduwa said. The president has been confined to his official residence for the past eight weeks due to the unrest.
Mahinda Rajapaksa, the brother of the president, quit as prime minister on May 9 after a wave of protests and sometimes violence.
The new Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has vowed to boost the economy and end fuel, gas and medicine shortages. He has initiated discussions with donor agencies and foreign governments.

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