Sri Lanka, May 14: The nation’s authorities have partially imposed a nationwide curfew after a rise in anti-Muslim violence in the region, just three weeks after the Easter Sunday terror attack claimed by Islamic State (IS).
According to BBC news reports, the emergency in the North-Western province will continue to remain in place until the next order, the police said.
Muslim-owned shops and mosques have been set on fire and vandalised by rioters, also a Muslim man has been beaten to death.
In various towns, police open fired into the air and also used tear gas trying to disperse a large crowd of people.
Tensions have risen since the IS militants attacked hotels and churches in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday which led to the deaths of more than 250 people and many wounded.
While attending a televised address, Sri Lankan police chief Chandana Wickramaratne cautioned the officers would retaliate to anti-Muslims rioters with “maximum force”.
Also, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe appealed for peace and calm during early hours of Monday, stating the current unrest in the country was hampering the probe into Easter Sunday’s terror attack occurred last month.
Around 10 per cent of Sri Lankan 22 million people is Muslims, who are considered to be predominantly Sinhalese Buddhists.
A group triggered an attack with the unrest centred on three districts north of the capital of Colombia. In Kiniyama town, rioters smashed windows and doors of the mosques. Rioters were demanding a search of the building after the armed forces probed a lake residing nearby looking for weapons.