Arsonists Destroy Catholic Church in Firebombing

January 27, 2004

Source: The Star

On January 27, 2004 The Star ran an Associated Press article that reported, "Arsonists firebombed a Roman Catholic church near the Sri Lankan capital in the third attack on a Christian place of worship in this predominantly Buddhist country in two weeks, officials said Tuesday. Nearly 20 unidentified men attacked the church late Monday in the village of Mathegoda, east of Colombo, Srahi Bonso, a church director, said by telephone. They destroyed statues with wooden clubs and hurled petrol bombs that set the building ablaze, she said. No injuries were reported. [Bonso] said the group of men, dressed in sarongs and black bandanas, fled the scene after the attack. No arrests have been made, a policeman said on condition of anonymity. The firebombing came amid calls from Buddhist leaders for a probe into the death of a prominent monk who campaigned against Christians working to convert Buddhists."