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Call for joint Buddhist celebrations

Followers of all religions urged to mark 2,600th anniversary of Buddha's enlightenment

Muslim religious leaders addressing the media at the press conference Muslim religious leaders addressing the media at the press conference
  • ucanews.com reporter, Colombo
  • Sri Lanka
  • May 4, 2011
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Leaders of all the major religions have appealed for the followers of all faiths to join in celebrations marking the 2,600th anniversary of the Buddha’s enlightenment.

The Inter Religious Alliance for National Unity (IANU) made the appeal yesterday at a press conference in Colombo.

“We all have a responsibility to join Buddhists and support their celebrations,” said Rev Sarath Hettiarchchi, the alliance’s co-chairman.

Now that the war is over, all religions have to work for a renewed multicultural vision and respect cultural and religious diversity, Rev Hettiarchchi, a Methodist priest.

“Buddhists join Christmas celebrations organized by the IANU to show their solidarity. Therefore we should support them in organizing the Buddhist anniversary.”

He urged people of all faiths to join the Buddhist practice of avoiding liquor and eating meat when marking the anniversary, for which the alliance is organizing several events.

Out of Sri Lanka’s population of 20 million, 71 percent are Buddhist, 15 percent are Hindu, 7 percent are Christian and 7 percent are Muslim.

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