Sri Lankan Prime Minister's Office Taken Over by Protesters

Protesters were seen standing on the roof of the Sri Lankan prime minister’s office in Colombo after they stormed the building on Wednesday, July 13.

Footage posted by Sheron Nanayakkara showed protesters on the roof waving the Sri Lankan flag.

Earlier video from Nanayakkara shows two men carrying another on the road outside the building. One can be heard saying, “tear gas hit him in the head.” Two children are also seen having water poured into their eyes.

The latest protest came after Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled the country to the Maldives on a military jet with his wife and two security officials, News First reported.

On July 13, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe imposed an emergency law island-wide and ordered security forces to arrest those acting in a “riotous manner,” according to the Daily Mirror.

Rajapaksa had said he would step down on July 13 after weeks of protests sparked by economic turmoil.

The Daily Mirror reported that Wickremesinghe had been appointed as the country’s acting president by Rajapaksa.

On Saturday, Wickremesinghe had announced his resignation, saying he would leave office once a new government was in place. Credit: Sheron Nanayakkara via Storyful

Video transcript

[CHANTING]

- So we have taken over his-- prime minister's office. And so everyone's celebrating. But I must say that it's still extremely hard to breathe because you can see, like, pepper in-- in the air. It's literally, like-- oh my god. Thousands. There it is.

There are thousands, thousands of people. And we're [INAUDIBLE]. Oh my god. And we've taken over the national TV channels. That's [INAUDIBLE] as well.

[NON-ENGLISH SPEECH]

- Just asking everyone to be careful, especially when you're going up. Oh my god. This is not the time for me to be here. But screw that. Can you see it?

- He was hit by the tear gas. Tear gas [INAUDIBLE].

- OK, I need to get out of here. Oh, shit. Little kids.

[NON-ENGLISH SPEECH]

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