Sectarian violence in SL: The Elders call for decisive action | Sunday Observer

Sectarian violence in SL: The Elders call for decisive action

Following recent sectarian violence targeting Muslim communities on the island, an independent group of global leaders including Desmond Tutu, Kofi Anan and Jimmy Carter have called on the Government of Sri Lanka to end impunity for those committing and inciting violence, defend human rights and promote inter-communal reconciliation.

 The Elders today called on the Government of Sri Lanka to act with greater urgency and thoroughness to end sectarian violence targeting Muslim communities on the island, to avoid further deterioration of the security environment and loss of life.

“All political and civil society leaders must reject the toxic rhetoric of Islamophobia from extremist Buddhist monks, the consequences of which can be seen across the region,” said former Algerian Foreign Minister and UN Diplomat Lakhdar Brahhimi.

The grouping noted that the Government has taken some measures to ounter the criminal violence, but also warned that since unrest erupted on

March 5, police and civil authorities have failed to make sufficient arrests or counter the inflammatory messaging on social media against Muslims being propagated by extremist Buddhist monks.

Gro Harlem Brundtland, Deputy Chair of The Elders and former Prime Minister of Norway, said he was deeply alarmed by the recent upsurge in sectarian violence in Sri Lanka.

“Anti-Muslim attacks are an increasing threat to peace and security across South and South-East Asia, and the authorities in Colombo need to act urgently to restore peace and order before communal relations deteriorate further,” Brundtland said.

 

 

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