COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — A top Sri Lankan minister has warned that the country’s Muslims could become radicalized if they continue to be subjected to attacks and false allegations of extremism by majority Buddhist nationalists.
Justice Minister Rauff Hakeem told a meeting with foreign correspondents Friday that the government must act against groups propagating hatred against Muslims and those responsible for recent violence in the southwest.
Sri Lanka’s government has been accused of turning a blind to years of anti-Muslim hate speech and attacks.
Two Muslims were killed and dozens of others were wounded in last month’s violence in three towns in the southwest after a Buddhist nationalist group held a rally criticizing the Muslims. Many homes and shops were looted and burnt.