World·Nothing is Foreign

United in protest, Sri Lankans fight a political dynasty

Sri Lanka is facing record inflation and unemployment, the likes of which haven't been seen in 74 years. But the crisis has united a nation that's long been divided along ethnic and religious lines — all to oust the political family they blame for the disaster.

Sri Lanka is facing record inflation and unemployment, the worst it's been in 74 years

Protesters take part in a demonstration against the economic crisis at the entrance of the president's office in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on April 12, 2022. (Ishara S. Kodikara/AFP/Getty Images)
Economically, Sri Lanka is on fire. Residents are dealing with ballooning food costs, hours-long lineups for fuel and power blackouts that last half the day. The country is facing record inflation and unemployment, the likes of which haven't been seen in 74 years. But the crisis has united a nation that's long been divided along ethnic and religious lines — all to oust the political family they blame for the disaster. This week, we hear from Sri Lankans who explain how their country landed in a $51-billion debt hole and the island nation's unprecedented protests. Featuring: Aritha Wickramasinghe, lawyer and human rights activist. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, executive director of the Centre for Policy Alternatives in Colombo.

Economically, Sri Lanka is on fire. Residents are dealing with ballooning food costs, hours-long lineups for fuel and power blackouts that last half the day. 

The country is facing record inflation and unemployment, the likes of which haven't been seen in 74 years. But the crisis has united a nation that's long been divided along ethnic and religious lines — all to oust the political family they blame for the disaster.

This week, we hear from Sri Lankans who explain how their country landed in a $51-billion debt hole and the island nation's unprecedented protests.

Featuring:

  • Aritha Wickramasinghe, lawyer and human rights activist.
  • Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, executive director of the Centre for Policy Alternatives in Colombo.

Nothing is Foreign is a new podcast from CBC News and CBC Podcasts. A weekly trip to where the story is unfolding. Hosted by Tamara Khandaker.

now