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POST TIME: 9 March, 2018 00:00 00 AM
Mosque, shops attacked in SL
‘Anti-riot' curfew eased in Kandy
AFP

Mosque, shops attacked in SL

Sri Lankan army patrol on the streets of Katugastota, a suburb of Kandy yesterday. Sri Lankan police said petrol bombs were hurled at a mosque yesterday as hundreds of troops patrolled a troubled central district where anti-Muslim violence has left three people dead. AFP Photo

Sri Lankan police said petrol bombs were hurled at a mosque yesterday as hundreds of troops patrolled a troubled central district where anti-Muslim violence has left three people dead, reports AFP from Colombo. Muslim-owned businesses were set on fire and vandalised in several parts of Sri Lanka, police said, days after an island-wide state of emergency was imposed to curb riots in Kandy.

Meanwhile, a daytime curfew was relaxed yesterday in the troubled Kandy where three people were killed in anti-Muslim riots, but schools remained closed as beefed-up security forces patrolled the streets.

More than 200 homes, busin esses and vehicles were set ablaze during three days of violence sparked by the death of a man from the mainly Buddhist Sinhalese majority at the hands of a Muslim mob last week.

Military officials said more reinforcements were sent to the area on Wednesday night to assist police.

Armoured vehicles and heavily-armed troops fortified the hill district, where internet services remain suspended and an evening curfew is in place.

The government ordered the internet blackout after police discovered mobs of Sinhalese rioters were using social media to coordinate attacks on Muslim establishments.

More than 200 homes, businesses and vehicles have been torched in three days of violence by mobs from the mainly Buddhist Sinhalese majority.

A 24-hour curfew was imposed on Wednesday afternoon after a hand grenade exploded in the hands of an attacker, killing him and wounding 11 others, officials said.

The day-time curfew was eased following a calm night but tensions remain high in the tourist hotspot and schools

shuttered.

But in Kuruvita, 125 kilometres (78 miles) south of Kandy, police said petrol bombs were lobbed at a mosque. Little damage was inflicted and three suspects are being pursued.

In Weligama, 240 kilometres south of Kandy, a Muslim-owned business was attacked, police said, while Muslim establishments were pelted with stones in at least two other locations outside Kandy.

Sri Lanka’s telecoms regulator asked internet providers to block access to Facebook and other social media platforms to prevent the spread of anti-Muslim hate speech.