In a rather sensational turn of political events in Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa staged a dramatic political comeback , becoming the new prime minister after President Maithripala Sirisena in an unprecedented action sacked premier Ranil Wickremesinghe.
The ousted Prime Minister termed the move as ‘unconstitutional’ and vowed to prove his majority in Parliament.
Rajapaksa itmay be recalled had previously served as the sixth President of Sri Lanka from 19 November 2005 to 9 January 2015 and Prime Minister from 2004-2005.
In its first reaction to the unfolding situation in Sri Lanka, the US State Department said it is following the development in the island nation.
‘We call on all parties to act in accordance with SL’s Constitution, refrain from violence, and follow due process,’ the State Department said in a tweet.
‘We expect gov of SL to uphold its Geneva commitments to human rights, reform, accountability, justice, and reconciliation,’ the South and Central Asia Bureau of the State Department said.
The move that took Sri Lanka by surprise came amid growing tensions between Sirisena and Wickremesinghe on several policy matters even as the President remained critical of the Prime Minister and his policies, especially on economy and security.