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Sirisena to inaugurate Buddhism classes at controversial Jaffna vihara

The Sri Lankan President is due to travel to Jaffna next week to inaugurate a 'teaching Buddhism in Tamil language' scheme.

The scheme will be run by the highly-criticised Jaffna Naga Vihara.

Due to its imposing structure and its prime location in Jaffna Town, a Tamil cultural centre with a negligible Buddhist population, locals have viewed the monastery as a symbol of Sinhala-Buddhist colonisation since its post-war expansion.

The monastery also came under fire recently when its former chief monk was cremated, with the backing of Sri Lankan military forces, in the vicinity of a Tamil massacre memorial and Hindu temple, despite fierce opposition from locals.