Communal violence rocks Sri Lanka; national emergency imposed

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Fateh Veer Singh Guram @ The Hush Post: A national emergency has been declared in the Indian Ocean island nation of Sri Lanka today. The emergency was imposed due to increasing incidents of communal clashes between the majority Buddhists and minority Muslims of the nation.

Earlier, a local curfew had been imposed in Kandy, after rioting and arson attacks over the weekend in the city. A Buddhist man was killed and Muslim businesses were set ablaze in the city.

The government imposed the emergency after instances of violence spread rapidly to other parts of the country. The government has promised to take ‘stern action’ against those spreading communal violence, a spokesperson of the government said.

Sri Lanka has been seeing instances of violence between the two communities since 2014, with an anti-Muslim campaign being launched following the deadly Aluthgama riots. In the month of February, in 2018, several shops, along with a mosque were burned down during clashes between Buddhist and Muslim groups. The violence that ensued resulted in five people being injured. The current spate of violence is allegedly being spread by the nationalist Buddhist organisation, Bodu Bala Sena (BBS).

Buddhists account for nearly 75 per cent of the population, while Muslims make up around 10 per cent of the population. The remaining 13 per cent is made up by the Hindus.

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