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Sri Lanka declares state of emergency following riots in Kandy

Sri Lanka declares state of emergency following riots in Kandy

Another 13 percent of the population are Hindus.

Renewed tension has been growing between the two communities since past year, with some hard line Buddhist groups accusing Muslims of forcing people to convert to Islam and vandalising Buddhist archaeological sites.

"It was also made a decision to take stern action against people who are instigating violence through Facebook", he added, referring to postings on social media.

Earlier, Sri Lankan police extended a curfew in parts of Kandy, home to famous tea plantations and Buddhist relics, after rioters disobeyed an overnight curfew and went on a rampage.

"The government will not hesitate to take firm and stem action against perpetrators of crimes, and those who violate the law and order", Gunawardhana added.

More news: Is The Presidential Seal Being Used Illegally By Trump Organization?

Sri Lanka imposed a curfew Monday in a central hill station town popular with tourists after days of communal unrest that saw a man killed and Muslim businesses set alight. In February, five people were injured and several shops and a mosque were damaged during clashes.

The government said in a statement that police were put on alert to prevent the violence from spreading and asked the people to "act with responsibility and remain calm".

Local officials said more than two dozen suspects had been detained by police in connection with the spate of arson attacks, while senior officers also launched an investigation into the conduct of the police.

Last November riots in the south of the island left one man dead and homes and vehicles damaged. "As a country that had suffered by acts of violence for almost three decades, we as a nation should desist from repetition of such", Director General of Government Information Department, Sudarshana Gunawardhana said.


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