Sri Lanka president suspends parliament: statement

Colombo (AFP) – Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena Thursday suspended parliament for nearly a month, an unexpected move that comes as a power struggle deepens between him and his unity government’s prime minister.

A decree released by the government quoted the president as stating that, under article 70 of the island’s constitution, he had discontinued parliament “with effect from midnight” of April 12. 

In recent weeks, Sirisena has reduced the responsibilities of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, removing from his control the central bank, the policy-making National Operations Room and several other institutions.