As a national security measure, Minister of Public Security in Sri Lanka, Sarath Weerasekara, has announced plans to ban the wearing of burqas and said the Government would also close more than 1,000 Islamic schools known as madrassas. In his own words:
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“In our early days, we had a lot of Muslim friends, but Muslim women and girls never wore the burqa.” “It is a sign of religious extremism that came about recently. We will definitely ban it.”
Muslims make up about 9% of the 22 million people in Sri Lanka, where Buddhists account for more than 70% of the population.