As anti-government protests in Colombo continue, senior US officials from the State Department and US Treasury met with embattled Sri Lankan president Gotabaya Rajapaksa today, to discuss the island’s worsening economic crisis.
Robert Kaproth, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Asia, and Kelly Keiderling, South and Central Asian Affairs Bureau Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Diplomacy, joined US Ambassador Julie Chung to meet with Rajapaksa in Colombo.
“It’s a challenging time, but we continue to deliver assistance & long-term partnership to help SL achieve a prosperous, secure & democratic future,” tweeted Chung after the meeting.
The discussion comes as an International Monetary Fund (IMF) team visited the island, with Sri Lanka looking to the global body for a bailout.
A devastating economic crisis has left the country with shortages of a range of essential goods from fuel to medicine.
Rajapaksa, who has been the target of anti-government protests has refused to step down from his post as president, which he was elected to with an overwhelming majority from the Sinhala south in 2019. He stands accused of overseeing war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.