Sri Lanka Violence

A Sri Lankan Muslim woman looks out on the street, in Aluthgama, Sri Lanka, Monday, June 16, 2014. Pic: AP

ALUTHGAMA, Sri Lanka (AP) — A government minister says at least three Muslims were killed after a right-wing Buddhist group with alleged state backing clashed with Muslims in southwestern Sri Lanka.

Several shops were burned and some mosques attacked in the violence Sunday night in the town of Aluthgama.

Justice Minister Rauf Hakeem accused his own government of failing to protect Muslims from the mob led by monks from Bodu Bala Sena, or Buddhist Force, which has been engaged in an anti-Muslim campaign in recent years.

A spokesman for the group could not be reached for comment. The group said representatives would meet with reporters later Monday to clarify its position.