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Former Sri Lankan President Blames Pandemic for Economic Disaster That Led to His Resignation

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Sri Lanka’s former president, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, said he did “the best” to avoid the economic disaster that affects his country, but that the pandemic nullified his efforts, according to his resignation letter read this Saturday in Parliament.

“The confinements of 2020 and 2021 eroded foreign exchange reserves. I did the most for the country,” he said in a letter read by the secretary general of Parliament, Dhammika Dasanayake, and sent from Singapore, where this woman fled. week amid strong protests.

Rajapaksa maintained in his brief letter that foreign exchange reserves were already low when he took office in November 2019, and that the pandemic ultimately devastated the economy on this south Indian island of 22 million.

Official figures show that Sri Lanka had a reserve of 7.5 billion dollars in 2019, and it was barely 1 million at the time of its departure from the country. The country defaulted on its foreign debt of 51 billion dollars in April.

Sri Lankan MPs are due to meet on Wednesday to elect a successor to Rajapaksa, who fled after protesters stormed his residence on July 9.

Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was sworn in as interim president on Friday and is listed as the favorite candidate, although he is also the target of protesters’ anger.

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