In a statement released to mark the resignation of Sri Lanka’s president Gotabaya Rajapaksa, his Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) party praised him for “ending terrorism” and blamed the COVID-19 pandemic for the current economic crisis.
In his role as defence secretary, Rajpaaksa oversaw the massacre of tens of thousands of Tamils in what is becoming increasingly recognised as a genocide. However, the statement released in Sinhala only earlier today said the accused war criminal had “played a crucial role in bringing peace to the motherland by ending the terrible terrorism of thirty years”.
“We salute you for your service as a war hero,” it added.
It went on to claim he had to face the “complex challenge” of the COVID-19 pandemic, which it blamed for creating the worst economic crisis in the country since independence.
The SLPP also lauded Rajapaksa for stepping down as president, stating that “the relinquishment of political power is rarer than anything else”.
“In the history of the country, no executive president has left office before the end of his term. It is indeed a difficult decision.”
See the full text of the letter in Sinhala, below.