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  4. Sri Lankan army chief denies shoot-at-sight orders; assures of 'no disgraceful acts' by armed forces

Sri Lankan army chief denies shoot-at-sight orders; assures of 'no disgraceful acts' by armed forces

According to local media reports, the Sri Lankan tri forces were ordered to shoot all those who plunder public property or cause personal harm, as large-scale protests continued across the island nation.

Vani Mehrotra Edited by: Vani Mehrotra @vani_mehrotra
New Delhi Updated on: May 11, 2022 10:56 IST
Sri Lanka protests, Sri Lanka crisis
Image Source : AP

Sri Lankan soldiers stand guard next to burnt buses a day after clashes between government supporters and anti-government protesters in Colombo

 

Highlights

  • The allegations were levelled by Duminda Nagamuwa of the Frontline Socialist Party
  • It was reported in the media that the army chief owes his position to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa
  • The Chief of Defence Staff may use the army against the people, it was reported

Sri Lankan Chief of Defence Staff and Commander of the Army, General Shavendra Silva on Tuesday refuted allegations that the armed forces are poised to shoot at the general public to provoke them.

The allegations were levelled by Duminda Nagamuwa of the Frontline Socialist Party, reported Daily Mirror Online.

Gen Shavendra Silva, while rejecting the statement, assured that the members of the armed forces would not resort to any such disgraceful acts under any circumstances.

It was reported in the media that Silva owes his position to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and he might use the army against the people.

According to local media reports, the Sri Lankan tri forces were ordered to shoot all those who plunder public property or cause personal harm, as large-scale protests continued across the island nation.

This comes after nationwide protests against the government intensified over the past few days, resulting in clashes with the security forces deployed at protest sites.

"The Ministry of Defence has ordered the tri-forces to open fire on anyone looting public property or causing harm to others," Army Spokesman told Daily Mirror.

Protesters, who have resorted to burning houses of Minsters and MP, have been identified.

Anti-government protesters also set on fire the official residences of Sri Lanka's Moratuwa Mayor Saman Lal Fernando and the MPs Sanath Nishantha, Ramesh Pathirana, Mahipala Herath, Thissa Kuttiarachchi and Nimal Lanza.

A large number of protesters were out on the streets and attacked the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna MPs. Even some Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) offices were set ablaze, the report stated.

Meanwhile, former Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and some of his family members have been shifted to Trincomalee Naval Base, a day after he resigned following violent protests that led to a nationwide curfew.

Helicopters were seen leaving the capital city with VVIPs and some speculated that they were members of the Rajapaksa family, Colombo Gazette reported. 

(With inputs from ANI)

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