Mr. Wickremesinghe, 73, was sworn in as prime minister in May, after months of protests forced President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to remove his elder brother, Mahinda Rajapaksa, from the post. He quickly began discussions with the International Monetary Fund on the terms of an economic bailout.
The political alliance was immediately greeted with skepticism by protesters, who viewed Mr. Wickremesinghe as a protector of the Rajapaksas. Those concerns have not abated.
Mr. Wickremesinghe’s first turn as Sri Lanka’s prime minister came after the then president was assassinated by Tamil separatists during the country’s long civil war.
His last stint as prime minister began in 2015, in a coalition government that promised to support independent investigations into accusations of corruption and human rights abuses leveled against the Rajapaksa brothers. Instead, critics charged, the government, headed by President Maithripala Sirisena, was faulted for blunting those investigations.