Inside Story

Is Sri Lanka on the path to dictatorship?

Political crisis deepens in Sri Lanka as protests erupt after prime minister sacked and replaced by a former president.

Sri Lanka has plunged into a bitter power struggle after the surprise sacking of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe by President Maithripala Sirisena.

Wickremesinghe’s replacement, Mahinda Rajapaksa, is a former president appointed by his successor and ex-rival for the top job.

The political crisis in Sri Lanka is threatening to spiral out of control and undermine stability in South East Asia.

One person was killed and two others wounded when the bodyguard of a deposed minister opened fire into a crowd of protesters.

Parliament has been warned of a “bloodbath” if the constitutional crisis isn’t solved.

So, is it a constitutional coup?

And what are the implications both at home and in the region?


Presenter: Imran Khan


Dilanthe Withanage – former government adviser in Sri Lanka

Alan Keenan – Sri Lanka project director at International Crisis Group

Jehan Perera – executive director of the National Peace Council of Sri Lanka