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Sri Lanka gas stations run dry

A woman searches for fuel after a station runs out of kerosene oil for cooking in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on Thursday. Associated Press/Photo by Eranga Jayawardena

Sri Lanka gas stations run dry

Authorities in Sri Lanka closed schools and asked nonessential workers to stay home Friday due to a severe fuel shortage. The government is implementing daily four-hour power cuts nationwide because there isn’t enough fuel for power stations. Thousands of people have waited in lines at gas stations across the country for days at a time. The island in the Indian Ocean is on the brink of bankruptcy due to rampant inflation, and is struggling to import basic necessities.

What caused the shortage? Critics accuse the powerful Rajapaksa family that has controlled the government of causing the crisis through corruption and mismanagement. Protesters across the country have blocked main roads over the fuel shortage and occupied the entrance to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s office, demanding his resignation. The new prime minister warned that food is running low after last year’s fertilizer bans resulted in low crop yields.  The World Bank approved a loan for emergency relief, but supplies have yet to arrive.

Dig deeper: Read Onize Ohikere’s report in World Tour on the protests across the country.

Mary Muncy

Mary Muncy is a breaking news reporter for WORLD. She graduated from World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College.


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