UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres welcomes resolution of political crisis in Sri Lanka

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Updated: December 21, 2018 10:02:32 AM

UN chief Antonio Guterres has welcomed the resolution of the political crisis in Sri Lanka and called on all the political actors to resolve all outstanding differences in the interest of people of the country.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres (File)

UN chief Antonio Guterres has welcomed the resolution of the political crisis in Sri Lanka and called on all the political actors to resolve all outstanding differences in the interest of people of the country. He welcomed the resolution of the political crisis in the island nation through peaceful and constitutional means. “The Secretary-General welcomes the resolution of the political crisis in Sri Lanka through peaceful, constitutional means, and applauds the resilience of the country’s democratic institutions,” Guterres’ spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters at his press briefing here on Thursday.

He said the Secretary-General calls on all political actors to seize the opportunity of the appointment of the new cabinet to resolve outstanding political differences in the same spirit of respect for democracy and in the interest of the people of Sri Lanka.

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena Thursday named a 30-member Cabinet while rejecting some of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s nominees and retained control over the security forces and police.

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The new Cabinet was appointed after an unexpected delay of three days since Wickremesinghe was sworn in as Prime Minister on December 16 following weeks of political crisis that led to government dysfunction.

Sirisena rejected Wickremesinghe’s nominees for Cabinet positions from those who had defected from his Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP).  At least three senior SLFP leaders had defected to Wickremesinghe’s United National Party (UNP) during the political crisis.

On October 26, Sirisena sacked prime minister Wickremesinghe and installed Rajapaksa in his place, triggering an unprecedented constitutional crisis. Sirisena also dissolved the 225-member Parliament and called for a snap election on January 5. He publicly vowed not to reinstate Wickremesinghe. However, Wickremesinghe was re-appointed as prime minister by Sirisena following a Supreme Court order, ending the 51-day political standoff in the country.

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