Sri Lanka's acting president Ranil Wickremesinghe on Monday declared a state of emergency in the country with immediate effect, ahead of the July 20 election for the post of the president which fell vacant after Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s resignation following the popular public uprising against him.
The government gazette number 2288/30 dated Jul 17 was issued Monday morning. The 225-member Parliament is expected to elect the new president on July 20.
The president is empowered to impose emergency regulations part 2 of the public security ordinance which says “(a) if the president is of the opinion that the police are inadequate to deal with a situation he may gazette an order calling out the armed forces to maintain public order”.
This means that security forces gain the power to search, arrest seize and remove weapons and explosives, and enter and search premises or persons.