Nineteen people were arrested by the Sri Lankan police after clashes broke out between Sinhala and Muslim people is parts of Galle yesterday, with reports of Muslim homes and businesses being attacked.
Police imposed a curfew in Kurunduwatta, Maha Hapugala, Welipitimodara, Ukwatta, Ginthota and Piyandigama Grama Sevaka Divisions amid tensions in the region.
The Law and Order minister Sagala Ratnayaka on Saturday urged people not to be "misled" by what he described as "false propraganda."
"Under the instructions of the President and the Prime Minister, curfew was imposed in the area from last night until 9 am this morning. I am aware that some political groups are now on a desperate mission to turn this minor brawl into a Sinhala-Muslim clash. I urge the public not to be misled by their false propaganda,” he was quoted by the Daily Mirror as saying.
“I reiterate that stern action will be taken against everyone attempting to resort to racist propaganda irrespective of their positions and political affiliations. The same will apply to the rumour-mongers trying to capitalise on this opportunity to achieve petty political gains," he added.