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Ranil Wickremesinghe to be new PM of crisis-hit Sri Lanka: Party

Ranil Wickremesinghe is set to be appointed Sri Lanka’s prime minister, a position he has held five times in the past, in an effort to bring stability to the crisis-ridden island nation, a party official and local media reports say.

“He is being sworn in as prime minister this evening because a number of members of parliament have asked him to take over and solve the country’s problems,” Vajira Abeywardena, an official of the United National Party (UNP) which Wickremesinghe heads, said on Thursday.

Abeywardena said more than 160 legislators in the 225-member parliament support Wickremesinghe’s selection, but this could not be verified independently.

There was no immediate comment from President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who has the power to appoint the prime minister.

If Rajapaksa selects Wickremesinghe, it would be seen as an attempt to end violence triggered by the crisis and restore international credibility as his government negotiates a bailout package

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