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>> It's a military lockdown in Sri Lanka's battered Kandy district. The President declared a 7-day nationwide state of emergency on Tuesday. These burnt out buildings, the aftermath of the clashes between the Sinhalese Buddhist and the Muslim minority. President Maithripala Sirisena has condemned the violence, sending in elite troops and slapping a curfew on the area.
> I have instructed the police to take maximum action against individuals, organizations and groups involved in these violent acts.>> Under the emergency, security forces can carry out searches without warrant and detain suspects without charges. Muslim owned shops were burnt down by a mob on Sunday, a revenge attack after the death of a young Sinhalese truck driver.
He was allegedly assaulted by a muslim group, four of whom have been arrested, the violence erupted after his funeral. But witnesses say properties from both communities have been targeted, long simmering tensions between the two groups have reignited since last year. Some hardline Buddhist groups here accuse Muslims of forcing people to convert to Islam, and vandalizing Buddhist archaeological sites.
They've also protested the presence of Muslim Rohingya refugees from Myanmar where Buddhist Nationalism has also been on the rise in Rakhine state. Last year, diplomats condemned violence against Muslims in Sri Lanka after 20 attacks and urged the government to protect minority rights.