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US: Protest erupts outside Sri Lankan President’s son’s house in Los Angeles

News Agencies | Updated on: 17 July 2022, 11:08 IST
Sri Lanka Crisis.

A small group of Sri Lankan protestors in the US had gathered outside the residence of Manoj Rajapaksa, son of ex-President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, in Los Angeles, shouting slogans to ask his father to return home, who fled to Singapore.

The protest took place ahead of the resignation of Rajapaksa on July 13, reported The Sunday Morning.

The protester said that President Gotabaya had to step down from the president's position and the money which he is owning is the money of the Sri Lankans which has to be returned.

"We are in the Los Angeles Sunland neighborhood. We are in front of the house of Gotabaya Rakapaksa's son, Manoj Rajapaksa. He has stolen money from the people of Sri Lanka and bought this luxury property. This is our money. This is our property. There are only a few of us here today but if your father will not leave his office, we will come here in the thousands," the protestors had said.

However, Sri Lankan Twitter users criticized the protest saying Manoj Rajapaksa has not been political and his life in the US is not linked to his father's politics.

Protestors claimed that Manoj Rajapaksa had no place to stay when he first arrived in the US, but now he owns several houses within the US itself, reported The Sunday Morning.

"How is it possible to buy such properties that value so much within a very small time period? This is a peaceful protest and the son has to tell the father to step down as soon as possible."

The protestors also wanted Manoj Rajapaksa to declare his assets and threatened to bring legal action against him if it was not done.

Rajapaksa, 73, had gone into hiding after protesters stormed his residence on July 9 and he had announced that he will hand over his resignation letter on Wednesday (July 13).

Earlier, Rajapaksa along with his wife escaped to the Maldives and from there they went to Singapore.

Rajapaksa's resignation came after thousands of people stormed into the President's House in Fort on Saturday.

Sri Lanka's multiple crises have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic which saw the collapse of the crucial tourism industry, which provides foreign currency for imported fuel and medical supplies, and rocked by the supply chain crisis precipitated by the Ukraine war.

Some 22 per cent of the population are food insecure and in need of assistance said the World Food Programme last month, and the UN has launched a joint Humanitarian Needs and Priorities Plan, requesting more than USD 47 million to aid around 1.7 million of the worst impacted.


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First published: 17 July 2022, 11:08 IST