Monday, June 16, 2014

Sri Lanka Buddhist extremists incite communal violence between Sinhalese and Muslims in Beruwala

Communal violence took place in Sri Lanka between Muslims and Sinhala Buddhists in the evening of June 15th in Sri Lanka's Beruwala multi ethnic electorate.

Reports say that two shops and a van was set fire in Muslim dominated Dharga Town. Police curfew has been imposed in the Beruwala and Aluthgama police areas.

 A tense situation prevailed in the area since three days as a Muslim man allegedly attacked a Buddhist monk. The Sinhalese Buddhists of Aluthgama town protested the police blocking Galle Road two days ago for failing to arrest the persons who assaulted the monk. Police later arrested the suspects and remanded them.

On June 15,  Buddhist extremist Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) held a rally at Aluthgama town. Ground reports said that they had planned to demonstrate across Dharga Town upto the temple of the monk who was attacked. Muslims are accused of pelting stones at the motorcade.

When we visited the area in the evening today, police and Special Task Force were guarding the Muslim town. Muslim shops in Dharga town were closed. large number of people had gathered in the mosque. The gates of the mosque were locked and police were guarding the main road in the town. Buddhists had decorated the road to the temple of the attacked monk at a corner of the town with Buddhist flags. Ground reports said that the BBS had planned to hold a demonstration across Dharga town taking the attacked monk in a procession to the temple he resided after the rally held in Aluthgama town.

BBS leader, Buddhist monk Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thero has allegedly delivered a fiery speech inciting communal violence at the BBS seminar held yesterday at Aluthgama.

Addressing the cheering crowd in the tension-stricken town, the monk said that if a moor set hand on any Sinhalese, not Buddhist monks, it would be the end of all the moors.

He publicly exclaimed that he was a racist and religious extremist.

He questioned why the police was providing so much security to Dharga Town and said that the police and Army of Sri Lanka were still Sinhala. He said pointing the guns to them was wrong.

The monk also blamed some Ministers who criticized them as racists and named them as toilet washers.

He pointed out he had made aware even the President regarding the problems the Sinhalese were facing but for no avail.

The monks speech is on You Tube and can be viewed below.

Communal violence caused carnage in Muslim dominated Dharga Town after this rally. 

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