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* Police investigations on hate crimes led to arrest of Buddhist monk and police officer
Sun, Jun 18, 2017, 08:06 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

June 18, Colombo: Sri Lanka Police media Spokesman Deputy Inspector General Priyantha Jayakody says that investigations on communal disturbances in various places of the island have been successful leading to the arrests of few individuals including a Buddhist monk and a police officer.

The police today have arrested a police officer and a Buddhist monk accused of leading an arson attack against a mosque and a Muslim business.

Few suspects have been taken into custody from the Eluvil area in Panadura and have been produced before the courts and they have been remanded until the end of the month, the police said.

Jayakody said the policeman, a monk and two others were caught on camera torching the buildings in Panadura just outside the capital Colombo.

"They were taken after analyzing CCTV footage which showed them setting fire to a mosque and a Muslim-owned book shop at Panadura last month," AFP quoted DIG Jayakody.

A number of people have been taken into custody From Kurunegala also, the Police said.

DIG Jayakody said the investigations conducted so far, have revealed these incidents and people are connected with the extremist group Bodu Bala Sena Organization.

He said the four accused are close associates of the leader of the Bodu bala Sena, extremist Buddhist monk Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thera.

An arrest warrant has been issued for the arrest of Gnanasara Thera, who is hiding in a safe location, after police linked him to dozens of hate crimes against Muslims establishments since April

The spokesman said the Police will take stern action against the elements disrupting communal harmony using social media.

Sri Lanka's Cabinet of Ministers last week directed the law enforcement authorities and the Attorney General to take immediate action against instigators and perpetrators of violence and hate speech against religious and ethnic groups.

 


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