Jeddah, 18th May 2019: The OIC Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) is following with great concern the increasing violence and attacks against Muslims across many regions of Sri Lanka, including horrific attacks on their homes, mosques and businesses by mobs and extremist Buddhist nationalists. While welcoming the unequivocal condemnation expressed by the government, and various political, religious and community leaders towards the hate-mongering and violence carried out against Muslims recently, IPHRC called upon the Government of Sri Lanka to ensure the safety and security of all its Muslim population and other minorities, including religious groups by taking concrete measures, and to speedily bring to justice the perpetrators of the recent heinous crimes to prevent further violence in the future.
Referring to the cowardly attacks carried out last month on churches and hotels in Sri Lanka, the Commission reiterated its firm position against terrorism as a grave human rights violation in all its forms and manifestations, and stressed that no community should be held responsible for the actions of a few extremists from any religion. The Commission recalled its oft repeated warning that in present times, hate speech has become an epidemic, which seriously threatens the coexistence among local communities and undermines the values of multiculturalism in modern societies. Many ultra-right wing political parties and extreme nationalists, use hate speech to demonize and promote discrimination against minorities, migrants and refugees in their countries, for narrow political gains, which often leads to violence against targeted groups, while seriously undermining the socio-cultural foundations of their respective societies, it added.
Accordingly, the Commission urged the need for renewed commitment at the highest level, both nationally and internationally, to combat all forms of hate speech, incitement to hatred and populist propaganda against any race, ethnic or religious group, especially migrants, refugees and minorities across the world. Countering populist nationalism also requires strengthening of intellectual and cultural strategies with focus on dialogue, mutual respect and acceptance as well as promotion of a democratic, egalitarian and interactive multiculturalism, it added.
For more information: Please visit IPHRC’s website: www.oic-iphrc.org