On Sunday the 21st of April, during the Easter weekend, a horrific series of coordinated were aimed at Sri Lankan hotels and churches filled with worshippers during Easter Sunday. These disgraceful attacks claimed the lives of more than 290 innocent holiday goers and worshippers and left hundreds more injured. The broader Muslim community have felt the pain of vile extremists attacking our mosques, and we as Muslims empathise and feel the pain of the victims and their families who were practising their religion on a holy day. MINAB members are hosting vigils and reaching out to the Sri Lankan community including the Sri Lankan Catholic community.
Chairman Imam Qari Asim echoed the thoughts of MINAB members on this horrific act of terror and extremism in his letter below:
“I strongly condemn the horrific terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday which have resulted in around 200 innocent people being brutally murdered and hundreds injured. Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected by the explosions at churches and hotels in Sri Lanka. The highly coordinated attacks on churches on Easter Sunday demonstrates that there are no boundaries to the depravity of the murderers. Murdering Christian worshippers on Easter Sunday is akin to killing Muslims praying in a Mosque on Eid day, and therefore we can understand the pain and anguish that has been caused to the Christian community of Sri Lanka on a day they consider to be one of their holiest. In this extremely difficult time for the Christian community across the world, we stand in solidarity with Christians everywhere. An attack on any place of worship is an attack on the way of life of faith communities and therefore an attack on all of us. These reprehensible acts, committed by those who are driven by hatred, aim to create fear and division in communities. The extremists want to restrict freedom of religion, which is one of the fundamental human values shared globally. We must stand together in solidarity and show that extremists will never succeed.”
Extremism in all its forms impacts on us all and an attack on victims regardless of their faith, ethnicity, nationality and social status is an attack on humanity and God. Let us all stand in solidarity with the Sri Lankan people and Christians, to drown out the voices of hatred and division.