Moderate Muslim Leaders Step Out From The Shadows: Indicate Willingness To Change And Move Forward As One Nation

Moderate leaders and members of the Muslim civil society coverged today at the Foundation Institute, where they discussed much-needed serious reforms to the Muslim way of living in Sri Lanka, in order to prevent friction and increase cohesion.

Accordingly, Minister Highways, Higher Education and Investment Promotion Kabir Hashim said community and religious leaders were working towards eliminating laws that can be detrimental to other communities.

"The All Ceylon Jamiyyathula Ulema did not allow funeral rituals for the terrorists who carried out the Easter Sunday attack," the Minister pointed out

He added that the Muslim community was willing to do what it takes to maintain national cohesion."We are not ashamed to do some soul-searching. We may have made mistakes in the past, but we are ready to correct them. We are ready to move forward as one nation," he said.

Addressing the media at the presser, President Counsel Ali Sabry spoke on the negative effects of social segregation, that starts from a young age, when children are enrolled in religion-schools ."Our national anthem says we are all children of one mother. If we are children of one mother, there shouldn't be separate schools that segregate us. We must all together and live together," he said.

Meanwhile, former Minister Imthiaz Bakeer Markar pointed to the fact that creating chaos in Sri Lanka was the agenda of the terrorists. He said the terrorists wanted other communities to target Muslims."They wanted to divide us. Those who attack Muslims only fulfill the agenda of extremist militants," he said, while Ferial Ashraff, herself a former Minister, reminded those present that it was Muslims that provided vital information to authritoes on the terrorists hiding out in Sainthamarathu. "The large majority of our community loathe extremists. Don't push them towards divisive groups by attacking them," she said.

President's Counsel reminded the public of the quali application of the law:"Everyone is equal before the country's law. We cannot segregate people by laws or other measures. We must choose to build bridges that unite us," he said.

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