Colombo —Sri Lanka has appealed to the IMF to revive a $1.5bn bailout suspended during the island nation’s political crisis late in 2018, the finance ministry said on Wednesday. In October, President Maithripala Sirisena sparked weeks of high political drama, even featuring brawls in parliament, by sacking Ranil Wickremesinghe as prime minister and dissolving the legislature. Courts and the parliament subsequently held that the president’s actions were unconstitutional and restored the status quo after more than seven weeks of upheaval that alarmed the international community. The crisis prompted three international credit rating agencies to downgrade Sri Lanka and the IMF to suspend its bailout programme — that began in 2016 — just as it was about to disburse another instalment. Sri Lanka’s finance ministry said the request to revive the bailout was made during talks between finance minister Mangala Samaraweera and IMF chief Christine Lagarde in Washington on Tuesday. A Sri Lankan ...

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