Sri Lanka Fuel Starts Trickling Back After Mass Protests

Limited fuel and gas supplies have started to trickle back in parts of Sri Lanka after another tumultuous anti-government mass protest over the weekend amid the deepening economic crisis with months of shortages of fuel, food, water, and medicine, among others.

On Monday, reports showed hundreds of Sri Lankans forming long queues at filling stations and community centers across the capital Colombo after a shipment of liquid petroleum gas arrived on Sunday.

Among those in the queue was banker Kanishka De Silva, who had taken time off work to get fuel.

“I work nearby, so it’s fine. But lots of people live on the outskirts, and it’s been hard to come to work. People have been cycling or walking for hours to come in. And those whose livelihoods depend on having petrol, they are the ones suffering,” Da Silva said.

“It’s been getting worse and worse. Here we have doctors, bankers, but also tuk-tuk drivers. It’s been a common battle that is why the protests have been so strong,” Da Silva added.

According to reports on Saturday, tens of thousands of angry and frustrated protesters stormed President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s official residence in Colombo and burned down the private house of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

In May, the president’s older brother, Mahinda Rajapaksa, was forced to resign as prime minister.

This week, President Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Wickremesinghe said they were ready to resign, while protesters said they would not leave the presidential palace until the president resigned.

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