Sri Lanka to appoint committee to probe 'conspiratorial hand' in riots
Sri Lanka to appoint committee to probe 'conspiratorial hand' in riots
Why Sri Lanka's Government Is Turning a Blind Eye to Anti-Muslim Violence
12 March, 2018, 06:35
Sri Lanka's Special Task Force soldiers walk past a damaged mosque after a clash between two communities in Digana central district of Kandy. In an email interview, Neil DeVotta, a professor of politics and worldwide affairs at Wake Forest University in North Carolina and an expert on ethnic conflict in South Asia, explains what is behind the tensions and why the government has done more to fan the flames than put out the fire.
The violence erupted after the death of a Buddhist Sinhalese man last week.
Muslims make up 10 per cent of Sri Lanka's total 21 million population. In the capital Colombo too, Muslim-owned businesses remained closed.
The restaurant located in Puttalam districts Anamaduwa city, 130 kilometres from Colombo, was targeted early morning even as police are keeping a tight vigil following eruption of communal clashes on Monday. Buddhist Sinhalese account for about 70 percent and ethnic Tamils, most of whom are Hindus, about 13 percent.
A three-member committee comprising of retired judges will probe whether any violation of law and order is among the reasons for the clashes, evaluate the damages to lives and properties, probe whether there was any conspiratorial hand behind the incidents, Colombo Page reported.
"There were no incident both yesterday and today". 169 of them from Kandy and 61 of them from other areas.
"We have arrested 10 key suspects, including Amith Weerasinghe, who orchestrated and led these attacks", police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera told reporters in Colombo, adding that another 75 were detained.
Chairman of the National Movement for Consumer Protection Ranjith Vithanage has lodged a complaint with the Human Rights Council against the temporary restriction on accessing the social media networks.
The government ordered the internet blackout after police discovered mobs of Sinhalese rioters were using social media to coordinate attacks on Muslim establishments. "We will ensure their safety and security", a military official quoted Senanayake as saying during his visit.
The end of the country's civil war in 2009 was followed by the emergence of hardline Buddhist nationalist groups, such as the Bodu Bala Sena, especially during the term of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa.
A group of radical Buddhists monks are facing prosecution for their alleged role in anti-Muslim violence in 2014 that left four people dead.
This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire.
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