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Buddhist monk hunger strikes calling for removal of Muslim minister

A senior Buddhist monk, Athuraliye Rathana today launched a hunger strike in Kandy calling for the removal of a Muslim minister and two Muslim governors from their posts. 

Rathana has accused Minister Rishad Bathiudeen and the Eastern and Western Province governors, M L A M Hizbullah and Azath Salley of being associated with the Islamist extremism. 

The incident follows the Easter Sunday suicide bombings by Islamist extremists supportive of Islamic State, which left over 250 people dead. 

Rathana is conducting his hunger strike outside the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic. 

In the aftermath of the bombings, several Muslim homes, businesses and mosques were destroyed by Buddhist mobs, with images showing that monks and Sri Lankan military personnel were also involved in racist rioting.