Sri Lanka strengthens security in southern town following violent clashes

Source: Xinhua| 2017-11-20 19:50:29|Editor: liuxin
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COLOMBO, Nov. 20 (Xinhua) -- The Sri Lankan government has tightened security in Gintota, Galle in southern Sri Lanka following violent clashes which erupted between Buddhist and Muslim groups on Friday evening, the Government Information Department said Monday.

Law and Order Minister Sagala Ratnayake said the government will continue to provide special security in Gintota as a precautionary measure.

Additional police battalions and officers from the Special Task force have been deployed in many areas across the Galle District.

Several houses, shops and a mosque were damaged when violent clashes erupted, resulting in the police declaring curfew in several areas in Galle for two consecutive nights.

Several people were also injured in the incident while at least 19 have been arrested.

Media reports said the groups had clashed over an accident which had escalated to violence.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe who visited Gintota on Sunday to assess the damage warned that stern action would be taken against anyone causing violence and unrest.

He also called on his police chief to submit a report over the clashes.

A separate police team had also been deployed to assess the damage.

The prime minister also urged the public not to be misled by false stories which would cause communal disharmony.