Mob led by Buddhist monks disrupt worship service; assault female congregant

February 24, 2019 

At approximately 09:15 a.m., as the pastor and her congregants were preparing for the Sunday worship service, a mob of around 200 individuals led by 04 Buddhist monks forcibly entered the church premises and demanded the pastor stop her worship activities immediately. They threatened the congregants in obscene language, broke chairs and damaged roofing sheets. 01 Buddhist monk threatened the Christians with death if they refused to stop their worship activities.

As they were leaving, some members of the mob grabbed a female congregant, dragged her into the street, threw her at the feet of the monks, and began beating her. They dispersed soon after. Another congregant called the police emergency hotline and 05 police officers from the Meegalewa Police Station arrived at around 10 a.m. and took the pastor’s statement. They then escorted the pastor, her husband, and the Christian who was assaulted to the police station. 

The Buddhist monks had arrived at the Meegalewa Police Station before the Christians and lodged a complaint, claiming the pastor was breaching the peace. The pastor then filed her own complaint concerning the incident (CIB (1) 107/282).