Hakeem calls for urgent Cabinet meeting

Leader of Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and Minister of Justice, Rauff Hakeem, has requested President Mahinda Rajapakse to convene a cabinet meeting to discuss the rising religious unrest and civil disturbance in the country.
Minister Hakeem has also contacted all the Muslim parliamentarians including Senior Minister M H M Fowzie (who is currently out of the country) and Ministers Rishard Bathiutheen and A L M Athaullah for the meeting, with this regard.
An SLMC statement said that the Minister has expressed his patent displeasure and condemnation on the attack on a private business site, last evening. He believes that this was seemingly carried out as a sequel to the ongoing attacks on the religious places and hate campaigns against Muslims and other religious minority communities in the country. As such, Minister Hakeem says he is constrained not to treat this as an isolated incident. He is equally dismayed at the ineffective response of the law and order machinery in containing the spread of such violence and unrest that fuels insecurity and peace of all minority communities in Sri Lanka.
He says that we believe that the 30-year civil unrest, violence and bloodshed confined to the war front of the North and East is over.
“What we are now witnessing is unrest and violence extended to the rest of the country too, threatening post war religious freedom with the potential to lead our multi ethno-religious communities to irreversible depths of antagonism once again. The President and his powerful good office that contained violence and bloodshed of the past, he believes can and will spend no time in curbing such violence too, by nipping it in the bud,” the SLMC statement said.
The Minister stressed that the duty and responsibility for the protection of people must be borne by the legitimate government and the State apparatuses of the country alone.
He said that no religious extremist/militant element can take the law onto themselves nor should they provoke others. In this light, the Minister appealed to the President and the most Buddhist high prelates to take proactive action to stop this spread of religious attacks and intolerance.
Meanwhile the Bodu Bala Sena has denied responsibility over the attack on Fashion Bug yesterday. Addressing the media today the monks said that they condemn the incident and want the police to arrest those responsible. (Colombo Gazette)