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Sat Jul 14, 2018, 02:53 PM

Sri Lanka: Buddhism to remain paramount in new charter

Sri Lanka has chosen only Buddhists for the post of president and prime minister since independence from British colonial rule in 1948. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said the Buddhist character of the country would not be touched.

"We are in the process of preparing the new constitution ... the president and myself have agreed to maintain the priority given to the Buddhism in the constitution as it is," Wickremesinghe told a group of Buddhist monks in Colombo on Wednesday.

The government announced plans last January to devolve power to provinces including in areas dominated by the country's ethnic Tamil minority in an effort to address alienation and bury the kind of ethnic tension that led to a 26-year civil war.

But Buddhists who make up 70 percent of Sri Lanka's 21 million people are opposed to any changes in the constitution under which Buddhism is accorded foremost position while allowing people of other faiths to practise.

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/07/sri-lanka-buddhism-remain-paramount-charter-170712151414499.html

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