religious groups condemn ‘well-orchestrated’ violence

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The Methodist Church of Sri Lanka unequivocally condemned the well -orchestrated violence, unleashed on the peaceful protesters at Galle Face and opposite Temple Trees on 9 May.

“It is obvious that it was planned in higher echelons of political power and was possible due to the tacit connivance of some senior Police Officers.

It is this cowardly act that triggered off a series of violent acts in many parts of the country. We call on the President, to appoint an independent group of eminent persons to impartially inquire and to bring to task those behind the initial attacks, which unfortunately resulted in the mayhem.

We as a Church do not condone any acts of violence and revenge as it nullifies the sacredness of the Himalayan tasks before the country, to come out of the present political and economic crisis, we are engulfed in. We call on all people to exercise restraint and remain patient at this crucial time and not give in to the diabolical schemes of those who resist change in the governance structure, to instigate violence,” they said.

Meanwhile, The National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL) called for stern action against those responsible for the attack on peaceful protesters and urged all citizens to exercise restraint to stem the tide of violence.

In a release, NCEASL said it is deeply saddened by yesterday’s violent attack on peaceful protesters at the Galle Face protest site and the outbreak of violence across the country.

“The right to peaceful protest is a fundamental right and an integral part of a democratic nation. The NCEASL reiterates that the failure to ensure the safety of peaceful protesters is a dereliction of the duty the State owes to its citizens.

Any expression of dissent and criticism should be exercised without resorting to violence. The NCEASL, therefore, strongly condemns the outbreak of violence and deplores the loss of life and the injuries caused to persons and property in different parts of the country,” they said.

Also, the All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama (ACJU) is greatly concerned to witness the reports of attacks on those who were peacefully demonstrating in a democratic manner at the Galle Face and in front of Temple Trees in protest of the current crisis in the country.

“We strongly condemn this vicious attack, which was against democracy. We urge the relevant authorities to conduct a fair and transparent investigation into these attacks and take legal action against the perpetrators. We also call on all parties to refrain from violence and to carry out their activities in a peaceful manner,” they said.