Sri Lanka blocks Facebook, WhatsApp following mosque attack

Sri Lankan government has decided to temporarily block some social media networks and messaging apps, which include Facebook and WhatsApp, following attacks on mosques and Muslim-owned businesses.

Several dozen people threw stones at mosques and Muslim-owned stores and a man was beaten in the Christian-majority town of Chilaw on the west coast on Sunday in a dispute that started on Facebook, according to a Reuters report.

Authorities said they arrested the author of one Facebook post, a 38-year-old Abdul Hameed Mohamed Hasmar, whose comment “1 day u will cry” was said to be interpreted as threatening violence.

Several mosques and Muslim homes were damaged in the attack in the district, the Muslim Council of Sri Lanka said, but the precise extent of damage and the number of arrests was not immediately clear.

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