Sri Lankan Muslims fear further attacks

Sri Lankan Muslims say they fear being attacked during Friday prayers by Sinhalese Buddhists, amid accusations that security forces are failing to take action against marauding mobs.

Despite a state of emergency and a curfew to curtail violence against Muslims in the central district of Kandy, concerns abound that attacks will continue in Sri Lanka.

On Thursday, streets of most towns in Kandy were empty, except for police and soldiers. The violence and heavy security presence is largely limited to Sri Lanka's central hills.

The latest communal violence began on Sunday when hundreds of Sinhala Buddhists converged on the district and attacked dozens of Muslim businesses, houses and mosques.

Since the violence erupted, there have been repeated allegations that security forces have failed to arrest the perpetrators of the attacks.

Sri Lanka is not new to Buddhist extremists attack on Muslims. an anti-Muslim campaign was launched by hardline Buddhists followed by deadly riots in Aluthgama in June 2014.

President Maithripala Siresena had vowed to investigate anti-Muslim crimes after assuming power in 2015, but no significant progress has been reported so far.

The South Asian island of Sri Lanka is a predominantly Buddhist nation of 21 million people.

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