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Sri Lanka communal riots: Journalist held hostage and released


Journalist attached to The Sunday Leader newspaper was taken hostage by a mob in Mathugama, Aluthgama this afternoon after the driver of the vehicle was assaulted.
The journalist, Binoy Suriarachi, and two female journalists, Megara Tegal and Dileesha Abeysundara, had gone to Aluthgama this afternoon to report on the situation in the area.

However at Mathugama they were surrounded by a violent mob with poles in their hands.

The mob assaulted the driver of the van and later held Suriarachi hostage after the others had fled the area.

Abeysundara then managed to negotiate the release of Suriarachi and the team returned to Colombo. A tense situation prevailed in Aluthgama this afternoon.

Meanwhile the U.S.  Embassy in Colombo condemned the violence that had spread over the weekend in Aluthgama and Beruwela. and urged the government to ensure that order is preserved and the lives of all citizens, places of worship, and property are protected.

“We urge the authorities to investigate these attacks and bring those responsible to justice. We also urge all sides to refrain from violence, exercise restraint, and respect the rule of law,” the U.S. Embassy said. (Colombo Gazette)

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