Two Muslim governors resign in Sri Lanka after protests by Buddhists

YB WEB DESK. Dated: 6/7/2019 10:12:12 AM

Sri Lanka, June 6 Two Muslim governors in Sri Lanka resigned on Monday after thousands of people, including majority Buddhist community monks, launched a protest in the pilgrim city of Kandy, demanding their sacking for allegedly supporting Islamist extremists responsible for the Easter suicide bombings. Western Province Governor Azath Salley and Eastern Province Governor MALM Hisbullah, handed over their resignation letters to President Maithripala Sirisena in response to protests by the majority Buddhist monks, officials said. Salley and Hisbullah, both Muslim allies of Sirisena and appointed by him, were under pressure to resign after being accused of being linked to extremism. Both Salley and Hisbullah have rejected the allegations. This is a direct fall out of the Easter Sunday suicide bomb attacks carried out by ISIS-linked local Islamist group National Thowheeth Jamaath (NTJ). The resignation came four days after Buddhist monk Athuraliye Rathana, who is also a parliamentarian from a Sirisena allied party, sit on a hunger strike in the central town of Kandy near the foremost Buddhist shrine, the Temple of Tooth. "I will end my fast only after the president will sack the two Muslim governors," Rathana said at the commencement of his protest. A crowd of about 10,000 Buddhists held a demonstration at the famous temple on Monday morning raising anti-Muslim slogans. Firebrand monk Galagodaaththe Gnanasara, released from jail on a presidential pardon last month, was also present.

 

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