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Sinhala Ravaya protest against mosque in Sri Lanka

Members of the Sinhala group, Sinhala Ravaya, protested at Kurgala on Saturday, calling for the removal of a mosque it alleges was built on an ancient Buddhist site.

The group, which included Buddhist monks, clashed with police who deployed teargas against the protestors, as they attempted to reach the site according to reports.

“We wanted to ensure that artefacts are preserved," said one of the protesting monks. "We want to remove the mosque and place a Buddha statue at the site.”

Earlier this year, another Buddhist nationalist Bodu Bala Sena (BBS), threatened to destroy the mosque at Kuragala, in order to stop “these infidel Muslims” from running riot.

The general secretary of the BBS, Galagodaaththe Gnanasara said the organisation would invade Kuragala and dismantle the mosque “brick by brick”, claiming a Buddhist monastery existed at the site since before 200 BC.

See more in our previous post: New government, old BBS (13 Feb 2015)