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Dinesh Gunawardena is Sri Lanka's new Prime Minister

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oi-Prakash KL

| Updated: Friday, July 22, 2022, 13:23 [IST]

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Colombo, July 22: Senior politician Dinesh Gunawardena has been appointed as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka on Friday.

Mahajana Eksath Peramuna's Gunawardena took oath as the new Prime Minister at the Prime Minister's Office on Flower Road, Colombo today, ANI said in a tweet. The new Prime Minister, son of late Philip Gunawardena, known as the father of socialism in Sri Lanka, is a close confidante of former Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Dinesh Gunawardena Dinesh Gunawardena. Image courtesy: ANI

Meanwhile, President Ranil Wickremesinghe is also slated to appoint his new cabinet on Friday, a day after he was sworn into Sri Lanka's highest office following mass protests that forced predecessor Gotabaya Rajapaksa to flee the country and resign, according to a report on Reuters.

Dinesh Gunawardena appointed as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka.

He took oath as the new Prime Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office on Flower Road, Colombo today.

(Photo source: NewsWire) pic.twitter.com/V6LnrpBQgj

— ANI (@ANI) July 22, 2022

73-year-old Wickremesinghe was on Wednesday elected as Sri Lanka's President by lawmakers and sworn in on Thursday as the 8th president, days after former president Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled the country and then resigned. The anti-government protesters, who succeeded in forcing the powerful Rajapaksa family to leave their official positions amidst the unprecedented economic crisis, are also demanding Wickremesinghe's resignation as he is seen as close to Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Meanwhile, anti-government protesters returned to Colombo after Parliament voted in six-time Prime Minister Wickremesinghe as the country's new president.

They refused to accept Wickremesinghe as the new president, holding him partly responsible for the country's unprecedented economic and political crisis. Police and special task force personnel forced them out on Friday when less than 100 of them were present.

The new president said he would extend support to the peaceful protesters but would be tough on those who try to promote violence under the guise of protests.

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