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Tuesday
June 2018
4:27 AM IST
News Headlines
Fresh FIR filed against Nirav Modi for possessing multiple Indian passports        Nigeria: 31 people killed in twin suicide blasts        1 dead, 20 injured in New Jersey arts festival shooting        Mexico shock World Cup holders Germany        World Cup: Serbia edge out Costa Rica in Group E opener        Messi penalty saved as Iceland hold Argentina        Pakistan SC bars Musharraf from contesting election        FIFA World Cup 2018: Russia stun Saudi Arabia in opener, substitutes shine in 5-0 win        India vs Afghanistan, one-off Test: Afghanistan fight back as India reach 347-6 on Day 1        Four killed, 10 missing after landslide in Kerala        Railways drop coach factory project in Palakkad        Vajpayee better, hopeful of full recovery in next few days: AIIMS director        Congress wins Jayanagar assembly seat in Karnataka        N Korea no longer a nuclear threat: Trump        Former president Maldives and chief justice sentenced for obstruction of justice        Hafiz Saeed-backed MML can’t contest Pakistan elections        Afghanistan not nervous about Test clash with India, says skipper Asghar Stanikzai        Amelia Kerr slams 232* to break 21-year-old record in Women's ODIs        Alappuzha and Thiruvananthapuram offer models of decentralized waste management systems        Bhaiyyu Maharaj, Spiritual Guru To Top Politicians, Commits Suicide        
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International News
Sri Lanka declares emergency to quell anti-Muslim riots
 
(Mar 6, 2018): Sri Lanka Tuesday declared a nationwide state of emergency to quell anti-Muslim riots that have killed at least two people and damaged dozens of mosques and homes.

"The cabinet of ministers decided on tough measures, including a 10-day nationwide state of emergency," Minister of City Planning Rauff Hakeem said as police imposed a curfew in the riot-hit central district of Kandy.

The government deployed heavily-armed police commandos in the hill station region, which is popular with tourists, after rioters defied an overnight curfew and went on the rampage.

The curfew in the district was extended after the body of a Muslim man was pulled from the ashes of a burnt building, threatening to further raise communal tensions that have flared up across Sri Lanka in recent weeks.

The emergency declaration gives authorities sweeping powers to arrest and detain suspects for long periods, and allows the government to deploy forces where needed.

It is the first time in seven years Sri Lanka has resorted to such a measure. The island nation was under a state of emergency for nearly three decades as government forces battled Tamil rebels in a civil war that ended in 2009.

Hakeem said the riots were concentrated in Kandy -- home to famous tea plantations and Buddhist relics -- but the government wanted to send a strong message given outbreaks of communal violence elsewhere recently.

A police spokesman said earlier Tuesday hundreds of commandos from the police Special Task Force had been deployed to Kandy to restore order and enforce the curfew.

Muslim homes, business and mosques were badly damaged in riots Monday triggered by the death of a Sinhalese man at the hands of a mob last week.

The Sinhalese are a mainly Buddhist ethnic group making up nearly three-quarters of Sri Lanka's 21 million people. Muslims account for 10 percent of its population.

More than two dozen arrests have been made and an inquiry opened into police conduct in Kandy, just the latest region to be plagued by religious and ethnic conflict.

Mobs set fire to Muslim-owned businesses and attacked a mosque in the east of the country last week after a Muslim chef was accused of adding contraceptives to food sold to Sinhalese.

The government dismissed the allegation as baseless and ordered the arrest of those fomenting unrest in the area.

Last November riots in the south of the island left one man dead and homes and vehicles damaged.

In June 2014 riots between Buddhists and Muslims left four dead and many injured.

That violence was instigated by a Buddhist extremist group whose leaders are on trial accused of spurring religious conflict.(AFP)


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