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Committees of conscience in war affected areas

2013 Jul 23

The North East Inter-faith Forum for Reconciliation (NEIFR) has launched a programme to establish ‘Committees of Conscience’ in the Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Trincomalee, Ampara, Batticaloa, Jaffna, Mullaitivu, Vavuniya, Mannar and Puttalam Districts.

The launch of the first Committee of Conscience in the Anuradhapura District, took place at the Anuradhapura National Tourist Resort Auditorium recently.

The Chairman of the forum Ven Welimuwapothana Piyaratana Nayaka Thera said that the North East Inter-faith Forum for Reconciliation will function on the concept that religious leaders are a major component who could contribute largely in the task of nation building and are a precious asset yet to be identified and recognized correctly.

“Everybody in society has the right to live peacefully and undisturbed. The clergy has the power to identify forces which could be harmful to society and thwart them before they reach social, religious or ethnic problems or conflicts.

The North East Inter-faith Forum for reconciliation was formed to develop religious and spiritual feelings of the people, rejecting violence,” Ven Piyaratana Thera stated.

North Central Bishop the Most Rev Norbet Andradi said that in display of unity among religions, the Sri Lanka Bishops’ Forum condemned the attack on Buddhagaya.

“The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission too has recommended importance of introducing a mechanism based on religions which are able to identify forces disturbing peace in the country and creating unrest and conflicts among communities,” the Bishop stated further. Buddhist Bikkhus, Catholic and Christian clergy, Kurakkals and Mowlavis representing all religions and districts attended the forum.

It was explained that NEIFR's youth wing named the 'Non Violent Youths Front' would be inaugurated on August 11 at the Mathri Dhamma School in Puttlam.
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