The statement from a prominent group of Sri Lankan Muslims came three days after hardline Buddhists tried to storm a mosque, which the government has ordered to be demolished and relocated.
The Muslim Council of Sri Lanka said it was ‘deeply concerned’ at the attempted destruction of the mosque in Dambulla last Friday. The council said that radical Buddhist elements were consistently undermining ethnic co-existence, and called on leaders of Sri Lanka''s majority Buddhist faith to re-establish good ties, The BBC reports.
Prominent monks in Dambulla have claimed that the mosque is illegally built on ground sacred to their religion. The council, however, said the building was lawfully registered and was 50 years old. According to the report, Buddhist leaders in Dambulla now say that they intend to demolish 72 ‘unauthorised’ structures in the sacred area, including the mosque and a Tamil Hindu temple.