Religious Conflicts in Sri Lanka Today

The article discusses the rising religious tensions in Sri Lanka between a Buddhist extremist party and followers of Islam. Riots in Sri Lanka have killed 3 and injured 78 people, and many Muslim mosques, homes, and businesses have been burned and vandalized. Many people are scared and left without families and homes  and there is a lot of unrest, especially because this is the largest religious riot to occur in decades. The riots are thought to be supported by the Rajapaksas, a religious political group which hopes to secure the Buddhist Sinhalese majority vote in order to stay in power in Sri Lanka.

Buddhist - Muslim Unrest in Sri Lanka

- The main opponents in this conflict are the Muslim people and the Buddhist Power Force. Muslim citizens are being terrorized and killed by the Buddhist forces.

- No other countries are involved in the conflict. Although other countries have similar riots and problems, this particular conflict is currently only a major problem in Sri Lanka.

- The main attacks are burning Muslim businesses and homes and killing Muslim people violently. Other attacks include vandalism.

- The violent riots are a result Buddhist and Muslim tensions that have arisen due to increased Buddhist radicalism in Sri Lanka in the last year. There is speculation that a desire for political power could also be a root cause for the continuation of the riots.

- The government is urging people to avoid taking independent and violent action in order to have their message heard, and is urging parties to avoid violent conflicts. Police are also working to find and arrest the perpetrators.

- These tactics are not particularly successful thus far and there is violence in having police forces try to end the violence. A more effective tactic for peacebuilding might be some sort of agreement or peaceful protest against the Rajapaksas that urge the Buddhist groups to end the violence.

- Video of the pope discussing violence in Sri Lanka


Bastians, Dharisha, and Gardiner Harris. "Buddhist-Muslim Unrest Boils Over in Sri Lanka." The New York Times. The New York Times, 16 June 2014. Web. 30 Apr. 2015.

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