The President of Sri Lanka, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, left the Maldives on Thursday, July 14, aboard a Saudia plane, bound for Singapore, an airport official told Agence France-Presse. the day after his flight from Colombo. Gotabaya Rajapaksa, his wife, Ioma, and two bodyguards were escorted onto the aircraft minutes before takeoff from Velana International Airport in Male, the source said.

The head of state fled his residence on Saturday, stormed by demonstrators, who blame him for his mismanagement at a time when the country is going through the most serious economic crisis in its history.

Local press reports that he was jeered at as he left Velana airport, and a protest was held in the capital, Malé, to demand that the Maldivian government not allow him to pass through safely.

The Maldivian media ensure that Mr. Rajapaksa spent the night in the luxury hotel Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi, paralleling this opulence and the economic crisis that the Sri Lankan population is going through. According to security sources, the resignation Mr. Rajapaksa had promised for Wednesday, could be announced after his departure from the Maldives.

“The resignation letter has been prepared,” said one source. As soon as he gives the green light, the Speaker of Parliament will publish it. According to diplomatic sources, the United States refused his visa application because he had renounced his American citizenship in 2019, before being a presidential candidate.