07/19/2019 Sri Lanka (International Christian Concern) – “They have no hate in their hearts,” Yamini Ravidran, a Christian activist from Sri Lanka, explained as she spoke on a panel at the U.S. State Department’s Second Annual Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom. “The survivors are on the path to recovery.”
Ravidran made these statements in regards to the Christian survivors of the 2019 Easter Bombings. On April 21, Easter Sunday, ISIS-linked suicide bombers attacked three churches and three resort hotels across Sri Lanka. As a result, over 250 people were killed and more than 500 others were injured.
For many Sri Lankan Christians, this was the first major attack their community has experienced in recent years. Historically, Sri Lankan Christians have faced harassment, and at times physical violence, perpetrated primarily by radical Buddhist nationalists who view Christians as foreigners.
However, the deadly Easter Bombings were perpetrated by radicalized members of Sri Lanka’s persecuted Muslim minority.
According to Ravidran, the attacks have increased distrust between religious communities. This has allowed extremist elements to further marginalize Sri Lanka’s Muslim community and sow tension. As the entire nation continues to recover from the deadly bombings, Ravidran hopes that Sri Lankans natural resilience and compassion can safeguard their country against the extremists.
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