Explainer: How Mahinda Rajapaksa Pulled off a Constitutional Coup in Sri Lanka

Maithripala Sirisena appointed Mahinda Rajapaksa at a rushed ceremony in Colombo

The president's office announced the decision moments after the prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was informed he was being replaced by his former nemesis, Mahinda Rajapaksa, despite opponents saying the president had no power to do so under the constitution.

The parliament had been due to meet again on November 5 to unveil the 2019 annual budget. "The dissolution of Parliament can also result in the resignation of the incumbent Prime Minister", the Colombo Telegraph said in a report.

President Maithripala Sirisena installed Sri Lanka's controversial former strongman leader Mahinda Rajapakse as the country's new prime minister Friday, in a shock move that plunged the island into an unprecedented constitutional crisis.

Sacked premier Ranil Wickremesinghe dismissed the appointment of Rajapaksa as "illegal and unconstitutional".

The order to remove the Secretary to the President has been issued by President Maithripala Sirisena in an Extraordinary Gazette. Both Rajapaksa and Wickremesinghe were in India and met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in recent weeks. The coalition government consisted of the UPFA and the United National Party (UNP), led by Wickremesinghe.

Sri Lanka Muslim Congress has said they will stay with Ranil Wickremesinghe's United National Front, which originally had 107 with speaker.

Members of Wickremesinghe's party must "respect democracy, respect the country and respect the law", the ex-president said through a loudhailer from a balcony.

In the Black sea found an ancient ship
As Prof Adams says: "This assemblage must comprise one of the finest underwater museums of ships and seafaring in the world". We're talking about still preserved ropes, shipwrecks that literally look as if they had sunk yesterday", Garbov said".

Wickremesinghe insisted he was still the legitimate prime minister and would fight his dismissal in court. He held the Prime Minister portfolio from April 6, 2004 until he became the President of the country in 2005.

Rajapaksa's return to power ends a more than three-year-old coalition government that was formed by Sirisena and Wickremesinghe on a promise to combat corruption and financial irregularities. However the swearing in of Rajapaksa could be legalised by passing a no-confidence motion in parliament against Mr Wickremesinghe.

Sirisena, who was Rajapaksa's minister of health, broke away from him to contest the presidential elections.

The sudden political development in Sri Lanka has come after Wickremesinghe-led United National Party (UNP) chose to leave the coalition government whose constituent party was Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP).

The UNP and UPFA, an alliance of several political parties, consolidated their coalition after a parliamentary election in August 2015.

There was no immediate reaction from India which has long seen Sri Lanka, located just off its southern tip, as part of its area of influence and had been concerned about Rajapaksa's wooing of China.

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