OIC Calls for Protecting Muslim Minorities’ Rights in Sri Lanka

OIC Secretary General Dr. Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen.

Jeddah, MINA – The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) expressed deep concern on Thursday over reports of the heavily tense situation after a mosque, several hotels and vehicles belonging to Muslims in Ampara were attacked by mobs leading to major tensions in the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka.

The OIC stressed on the need to protect the rights of the Muslim minority, foremost of which is the right to observe their religious practices without harassment or any direct or indirect breaches and to earn their livelihoods and conduct their business under full protection of the law, KUNA reported, citing a statement.

The statement noted OIC Secretary General Dr. Yousef Al-Othaimeen called on the Government of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka to proceed expeditiously with an investigation of such abuses and to ensure the safety and security of the Muslim minority while practicing their religious rights in accordance with all relevant international human rights conventions and instruments.

Police had been deployed in the eastern town of Ampara to control the unrest after a Sinhalese mob attacked a mosque, four shops and several vehicles late on Monday.

Muslims comprise around 9 percent of Sri Lanka’s population of 21 million. Buddhists make up about 70 percent and Hindus about 13 percent. (T/RS5/RS1)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)