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Muslim-owned restaurant attacked in Sri Lanka

Press Trust of India  |  Colombo 

Fresh violence erupted in today after a Muslim-owned restaurant was attacked in an alleged hate crime in a northern city, a day after appointed a commission to probe a spate of anti-Muslim riots in the violence-hit district.

The restaurant located in district's Anamaduwa city, 130 kilometres from Colombo, was targeted early morning even as police are keeping a tight vigil following eruption of communal clashes on Monday that have left two persons dead and damaged several homes, businesses and mosques in the scenic district.

"was attacked at 4 am (local time) this morning," the Colombo Telegraph reported.

Tensions remain high across after the violence broke out following the death of a man from the mainly Buddhist Sinhalese majority last week.

appointed a three-member commission yesterday to probe the communal clashes in

He had declared a nationwide state of emergency on Tuesday and deployed the police and military to prevent escalation of violence after clashes between majority Sinhala Buddhists and minority Muslims erupted in other areas of central Sri Lanka's riot-hit Kandy district.

Muslims make up 10 per cent of Sri Lanka's total 21 million population. Sinhalese are a largely Buddhist ethnic group.

A total of 146 suspects have been arrested in Kandy - 135 over violence and 11 for violating the curfew - since March 4, a media report said yesterday.

Meanwhile, Kandy's said today that all government schools which were closed on March 7 due to the unrest will reopen tomorrow.

The announcement came after police SP Ruwan Gunasekara said yesterday that curfew will not be imposed in Kandy as situation has been peaceful.

Human Rights Commission of today summoned the over the temporary ban imposed on including throughout the island nation last week.

The police had claimed that anti-Muslim rioters were using to spread anti-Muslim hatred.

said although it was considered a human rights violation, the government had taken the decision in order to curb the spread of false and malicious and to stop the situation from going out of control.

"The state security was important than anything else and we are glad the situation is now returning to normal," Jayasekara was quoted as saying by the

Tensions between Muslim groups and the majority Sinhalese Buddhist community in the country have escalated since the end of the civil war in May 2009.

In 2014, violence directed against Muslim minority groups broke out in the southwestern town of Aluthgama, following a rally by hardline Buddhist nationalist monks, resulting in the death of at least three Muslims.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, March 11 2018. 19:05 IST