In what is termed as an ‘unprecedented meeting’ several top diplomats in Sri Lanka came together on Thursday to assure the Muslim community that they will utilize their necessary diplomatic channels to pressure the government and the police to take action against the increasing attacks on Muslims.
During a meeting between the Ambassadors of EU, Australia, Canada, Turkey, South Africa, and the Muslim Council of Sri Lanka as well as other civil society organizations at the Dewatagaha Mosque in Colombo, the diplomats condemned the violence and called for freedom of religion and rule of law to be respected.
During the meeting, the diplomats highlighted that it was important for the government and the police to ensure there is no impunity to the series of hate crimes, which has seen a drastic increase over the recent weeks. Incidentally, the show of solidarity by the diplomatic community to the Muslims come exactly a week since the police claimed that it deployed four units to arrest Bodu Bala Sena’s Galagoda Atte Gnanasara on charges of inciting religious disharmony. However, a week later, Gnanasara is yet to be arrested.
In a tweet, Alan Keenan, Sri Lanka Project Director of the International Crisis Group said, “To my knowledge this kind of collective public diplomatic intervention is unprecedented in Sri Lanka.” He added that such intervention would have been ‘unnecessary’ if the government had enforced the law.