Use full force of the law against them – Malik

Published : 8:43 am  June 19, 2017 | No comments so far |  | 


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The United National Party (UNP ) welcomes the decision taken by President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to use the full force of the law against those causing religious tension and spreading racial hatred, thereby undermining the efforts of the government at reconciliation, Party Chairman Malik Samarawickrama said yesterday. 

DM_20170619_A001-157“We welcome the statement of the Cabinet of ministers, the Prime Minister and the President to use the full force of the law against those found guilty of causing religious tension, spreading racial hatred and thereby undermining the efforts at reconciliation since the new government came into power,” Samarawickrama said in a statement over the weekend.   

He said his party was deeply concerned by recent attempts by subversive elements to sabotage the reconciliation efforts of the national unity government led by President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.   

“Ever since it was founded, the UNP has remained a secular political party fostering unity while building a truly Sri Lankan identity. At the January 2015 Presidential Election as well as the August 2015 General Election, the UNP and its allies received a mandate to continue with their reconciliation efforts. The UNP will not waver in ensuring that ethnic peace, religious harmony and the rule of law are maintained. A corner-stone of every religion is non-violence and respect for other religions. Those who spread hate and instigate violence are only undermining the faiths they claim to practice,” he said.   

The minister said UNP would join the President and the Prime Minister in urging the law enforcement authorities to bring to justice those responsible for hate crimes. “There is no place for religious intolerance and racial hatred in the 21st century Sri Lanka as it emerges a peaceful, stable and a strong economy and a beacon of hope for democracy,” he said.   

Mr Samarawickrama stressed that no individual or organization causing religious tension should be allowed to escape prosecution. “Sri Lanka cannot be pulled back to the dark days of war where tens of thousands of lives were lost. The economic stagnation and international isolation suffered as a result of it is still strong in our memories,” he said.   

“Political forces relegated to the dustbin of history are attempting to exploit extremism in the hope of returning to power. The UNP, with its strong commitment to national unity and harmony, will resist such bankrupt political opportunists and we urge the authorities to swiftly bring these persons to justice. The UNP has faith in the vast majority of Sri Lankans who wish to protect the freedom they enjoy under the new unity government,”he concluded.