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Muslim Council of Sri Lanka statement on Dambulla Jumma Mosque incident

Text of a statement issued on behalf of the Muslim Council of Sri Lanka by its President N.M .Ameen

The Muslim Council of Sri Lanka is deeply concerned about the unfortunate incident of the attempted destruction of a mosque and disruption to the Muslims obligatory Friday prayers on 20th April 2012 at Dambulla.

The Muslims have coexisted in this country and defended it from internal and foreign forces throughout its history.

Muslim Council of Sri Lanka considers the involvement of certain sections of the Buddhists clergy and their participation in this unruly behavior of the mob which attempted to destroy the mosque.

The Muslims of Dambulla had very cordial relationship with the majority Buddhist Community and had the freedom to practice their religion unhindered for decades.

This mosque in particular, was in existence for over 50 years and lawfully registered and was not a threat to any religion or individual.

This is the only mosque for the Muslim community within a radius of 15 Kilometers of Dambulla.

It is regrettable that a group of radical elements of the Buddhist community against the will of the majority has been consistently undermining the coexistence of the different ethnic communities in Sri Lanka.

We call upon the religious, political and civil leadership of the Buddhist community to intervene immediately and reestablish the cordial relationship which existed between the Buddhists and Muslims prior to this unfortunate incident.

We also call upon His Excellency the President and the government to rein in the undemocratic forces who have taken law into their own hands.

The Muslims of Sri Lanka have stood for a united and sovereign nation even at the recently concluded UN Human Rights Commission sessions in Geneva.

The All Ceylon Jammiyathul Ulama (Council of Muslim Theologians) represented by its senior leadership lobbied the Muslim countries to support Sri Lanka.

Over 1500 Muslims from this particular Mosque staged a protest on 16.3.2012 against the unwarranted UNHRC resolution against Sri Lanka.

It should also be noted that the Muslim Parliamentarians, civil and religious leadership along with the Muslim countries overwhelmingly supported the stand taken by the government of Sri Lanka at the UN HRC sessions.

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