Sri Lanka blocks Facebook, WhatsApp after mosque attack

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Several dozen people threw stones on Mosque and Muslim owned stores and a local man was beaten in the town of Chilaw on Sri Lanka’s west coast on Sunday in a dispute that started on Facebook. Three weeks ago in Sri Lanka Islamist’s bombers blew themselves in four hotels and three churches killing more than 250 people since the Muslim groups say they have received dozens of complaints about the people being harassed.

Sri Lanka is temporarily blocking Facebook and Whats App and some other social media networks and messaging apps including Facebook and Whats App it is said on Monday after attackers on Mosques and Muslim-Owned businesses in the worst unrest since Easter bombings by Islamist militants.

Authorities said that they arrested the author of a Facebook post identified as 38-year-old Abdul Hameed Mohamed Hasmar whose online comment 1 day u ll cry people said was interpreted threatening violence.

Later on Sunday and early on Monday authorities arrested a group of men in the nearby the Kurunegala district for allegedly attacking Muslim Owned business says a police source. Military spokesman Sumith Atapattu said people in the mostly Buddhist district then demanded the arrested men’s release. To control the situation a police curfew has been imposed during the night says Atapattu.

The flare-up is the worst violence in the three weeks since Sri Lankan Islamist bombers blew themselves in four hotels and churches since Muslim groups say that they have received many complaints and being harassed. Other communities said that they fear the government which failed to act on successive warnings about looming Islamist attacks has not caught all potentials militants.

Sri Lanka has used temporary bans on social media in a bid to deter misinformation and rumors. Social media blocked again as a temporary measure to maintain peace in the country Nalaka Kaluweva director general of the government information department told Reuters on Monday.

Sri Lanka’s leading mobile phone operator said that it had also received instructions to block the apps Viber, IMO, Snapchat, Instagram and Youtube until further notice. A violent clash between Muslims and Christians erupted a week ago in Negombo, killing more than 100 people during Easter prayers, after a traffic dispute. The government also imposed a ban on social media after that clash.

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