International community is trying to take advantage of this situation .Why don't they look at Iraq where they kill thousands innocent people they created the problems in Iraq Libiya and Siriya they are trying to do the same here All Sri Lankans beware if you love your motherland do not listen or spread rumours look after the innocent Muslims of your neighborhood show them that you care let us be united we have to fight with the outside forces not inside forces
What happened in Aluthgama, a verified account
Updates: For more updated accounts of the violence in Aluthgama see : After three days of tensions, calm sets over Aluthgama
Tensions flared up in Aluthgama, leaving 80 people injured with at least seven people admitted to hospital with gunshot wounds. Three people have died according to Justice Minister Rauff Hakeem. This is a rundown of what happened, gathered from social content and mainstream news reports.
- Tensions broke out last week in Aluthgama, after reports of a Muslim man allegedly attacking a monk and several others. Tear gas was used to control protests. Three were arrested. A vehicle of a minister, Kumara Welgama, who visited the area was also attacked.
- Extremist group Bodu Bala Sena held a rally in Aluthgama on Sunday. Its leader, Galagodaaththe Gnanasara, questioned the heavy police presence in the area. “This country still has a Sinhalese Police, this country still has a Sinhalese Army. It will be the end of all [Muslims] if a Muslim at least lays a finger on a Sinhalese,” he said.
- The Bodu Bala Sena then proceeded to the Dharga Town area by a vehicle convoy. People in the area pelted stones at the convoy, triggering clashes. Several were injured.
- Police declared curfew after clashes started, and deployed police and Special Task Force personnel to control the situation. Curfew which was initially held in Aluthgama then extended to the Beruwala police area, and will be in place till further notice, according to the Police Media Spokesman. Police and Special Task Force reinforcement were reportedly brought in from multiple police stations in the region.
- Several Muslim-owned shops in the area have been torched. Ground reporters have described seeing heavy clashes.
- Telephone lines in Aluthgama were reportedly disconnected, whilst rail and road services were also disrupted.
- Meanwhile footage showed armed personnel carriers and newly-imported water cannons being brought to the Aluthgama area.
- Deputy Minster Faizer Mustapha, who played a pivotal role during the previous tensions in Colombo, was trapped inside Naleemia Islamic School, as mob surrounded the premises. Special Task Force was on the ground attempting to secure the Deputy Minister’s safety. (Update: See Reuters report on the minister being trapped)
- In a seemingly related incident Harcourts Pharmacy in Dehiwala has been pelted with stones, with minor damages to the shop front. No torching as suggested by earlier reports.
- President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is in Bolivia attending the G77 summit, called for restraint via his twitter account and said those who are responsible for the violence would be held accountable.
- Sri Lanka Muslim Congress and other Muslim organisations expressed concern, and called on the Muslim community to remain peaceful. MP Athureliye Rathana Thero of the JHU have similarly called for calm saying that ‘its easy for extremist groups of any kind to play on the insecurities of people’.
- Bodu Bala Sena says the organization was protesting peacefully when they came under attack. BBS spokesman Dilantha Vitanage told Reuters that the incident was “unfortunate” and should not have happened. “There are damages and casualties to both the parties” he said.
- Meanwhile NewsFirst Reports that approximately 80 people have been injured in the clashes with at least seven people with gunshot injuries.
- BBC Sinhala has published a video that captures the situation in Aluthgama. Curfew is now in force from Aluthgama to Beruwala, unverified reports of clashes continued to emerge.
- The Incident is being treaded on very lightly by Mainstream media with the only detailed account appearing on the DailyFT. Most english dailies only carry the story about the curfew, no mention of the incident on DailyNews.
- Police curfew continues in Aluthgama and Beruwala areas according to reports.
- Verified reports say at least two people have died from the incident, with the Justice Minister Rauff Hakeem putting the death count at three persons in a comment to the BBC.
- A distraught Rauff Hakeem says he is considering resigning from the government.
— Azzam Ameen (@AzzamAmeen) June 16, 2014
- Several reporters are on the ground now in Aluthgama, they continue to post updates via Twitter. BBC’s sinhala service has the most comprehensive pictures and videos of the incident.
— dharisha (@tingilye) June 16, 2014
— Dinouk Colombage (@Dinoukc) June 16, 2014
For continued coverage of this story see Aftermath of Sunday’s Violence in Aluthgama
Editor’s Note: Whilst there is a no media blackout as yet, the amount of information flowing through the newspapers and television channels seem to be limited. We took the picture from BBC Sandeshaya. An earlier version of this story linked to Muslim families finding communal safety. This was subsequently removed due to difficulties in ascertaining the authenticity of the photo.
Whoever disrupts peace should shot to death.
No matter whatever the religion he/she is.
Gnanasara need's to be punished, President Mahinda Rajapakse should take severe action and forsee this doesn't happen again, or else NATO will Oust the government and so called freewill will rule.
God Bless Sri Lanka
How could we behave like barbarians..
We r no difference from tigers now. Thank u yanasara for betraying our county.. I believe u can sleep now well..
Why Why are we doing this? as a Sinhala Buddhist I am sick to my stomach. This is not who we are. Why r we letting some radical political henchmen string us around like puppets?
I absolutely agree, these are problems created by an external force, but the only way to get against this, is if we appoint someone else as the head of state, I wouldn't even mind Ranil who is a 100% times better.
Please be united and support our fellow Buddhists and Muslims and stop making racial tension.
@Sinhala Buddhist Girl
"as a Sinhala Buddhist I am sick to my stomach."
A Sinhala "Buddhist" is not a "Buddhist". They follow Monk Mahanama Maraism.
The Sinhala are Paras, and called Para-Sinhala i
True! I couldn't have agreed more! Why do people find it so hard to live together? I live in a hostel and my roommate is a Buddhist but I'm a muslim! But we share so much of laugher together! This is pathetic! :/
stop diverging from the main point of her post you dim witted, thick headed, dense idiot.
does technicalities really matter here? No.
Its not about spelling a name right. What has been done by the BBS is giving amunition for the international community to interfear in our internal affirs. Very soon the UN will want an inquiry into the violation of Human rights of all minorities. And on that day we will not have the Muslim countries that supported us at the UN. "Lord forgive them for they have sinned"
@Srilankan so your only concern is that the international community is getting ammunition? and not that innocent people are being terrorised?