Once Ranil Wickremesinghe was sworn in as the country's eighth president, the police attacked the protesters, arresting nine citizens and injuring dozens of people, many of whom had to be hospitalized.
Human rights defenders demanded from the Wickremesinghe administration that those responsible for the attacks on citizens be identified and an immediate halt to the security force's disproportionate actions targeting unarmed civilians.
"Hundreds of military personnel and police had blocked the access roads to Galle Face and prevented the public from entering the area," the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) president Saliya Pieris said.
Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka..
Security forces intervened in the protests in the Galle Face area.
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"The BASL has been informed that at least two Attorneys-at-Law who sought to intervene in their professional capacity had been assaulted by service personnel. Video footage also shows unarmed civilians being assaulted by the security forces," he added.
On Friday, 18 ministers were sworn into before Wickremesinghe. Among those who took oaths as cabinet ministers were Ali Sabry as the minister of Foreign Affairs, Harin Fernando as the minister of Tourism and Lands, Nalin Fernando as the minister of Trade, Commerce and Food Security, Kanchana Wijesekera as the minister of Power and Energy.
Dinesh Gunawardena was sworn in as the prime minister earlier in the day, and he also held the position of the minister of Public Administration, Home Affairs, Provincial Councils, and Local Government.