Sri Lankan forces raid protest camp, make arrests

STORY: Media footage showed soldiers in riot gear and armed with assault rifles tearing down the camp, set up in April by protesters enraged with the country's economic collapse that has caused severe shortages of fuel, food and medicines.

"A joint operation involving the military, police and police special forces was launched in the early hours to recover the presidential secretariat from the protesters as they have no legal right to hold it," police spokesperson Nalin Thalduwa told Reuters.

"Nine people, including two injured, have been arrested."

Protesters had feared a crackdown was imminent under new President Ranil Wickremesinghe, who was seen as an ally of his ousted predecessor, Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Protest organizers said hundreds of security personnel surrounded the "Gota Go Gama" protest camp, mockingly named after Rajapaksa, after midnight and then took apart a section of it.

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