Inside Story

Will ‘deradicalisation’ in Sri Lanka work?

The Sri Lankan government is detaining those with what it calls ‘extreme religious views’ and banning the burqa.

Many from Sri Lanka’s minority Muslim community say they are being targeted – and in the latest decision affecting them, the government is reintroducing a ban on burqas.

The government says the full-face covering for women is a sign of what it calls religious “extremism”, and it is barring it on national security grounds.

More than 1,000 Muslim schools accused of flouting national education policy will also be shut.

The moves come nearly two years after a series of attacks on hotels and churches on Easter Sunday that killed more than 250 people.

So, will the new rules stop “extremism” in the country?

Presenter: Peter Dobbie


Rauff Hakeem – Leader of Sri Lanka Muslim Congress, member of parliament and former minister of justice

Shreen Abdul Saroor – Peace activist and co-founder of Women’s Action Network

Jehan Perera – Executive director of the National Peace Council of Sri Lanka