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* Sri Lanka Police arrest 28 Joint Opposition protesters for damaging public property in Hambantota
Fri, Oct 6, 2017, 07:47 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Oct 06, Colombo: Sri Lanka Police Friday arrested 28 protesters including six women for damaging public property during a protest led by the Joint Opposition demonstrating against the government's plans to privatize the idling Mattala International airport.

The Police clashed with hundreds of supporters of the Joint Opposition firing tear gas and water cannon to disperse them. Four police officers also received injuries during the melee when the demonstrators pelted stones.

Hambantota Magistrate Court yesterday issued an injunction restricting the MPs Namal Rajapaksa and D.V. Upul entering the vicinity of the Hambantota Port, Indian Consulate and the roads leading to the Hambantota Port during the protests today The suspects are to be produced before Hambantota Magistrate Court today.

The JO protests the handing over of Hambantota Port to China and the alleged sale of Mahinda Rajapaksa International Airport in Mattala to India.

The protest was led by MP Namal Rajapaksa former president Mahinda Rajapaksa's son, against privatizing his father's namesake airport which only serves one flight a day.

The government is planning to hand over its operations to an Indian investor.

The government in July signed a US$ 1.2 billion deal with a state-owned Chinese company to lease the Hambanthota Port in order to pay the debt taken by the Rajapaksa administration from China to build the Port.


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