Clergyman assaulted in Ampara, Sri Lanka

General June 24, 2008


National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL)

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Incident Report
(23rd June 2008)

Clergyman assaulted in Ampara
Methodist Church
Ampara District

On the evening of 23rd June 2008, at about 4.40 pm, the Reverend Father from the Methodist Church in Ampara (Eastern Province) was returning from a cell group meeting in Uhana when he was accosted by 3 men. They asked him to accompany them to a house claiming there were people there who wished to become Christians. Sensing it was a trap, the Reverend had requested that they come to the Church to talk to him if they wished to know more about Christianity. The 3 men then beaten him up threatening him not to return to that village. It is reported that the 3 men are Gramarakshaka Niladhari (Home Guards). The injured clergyman is receiving treatment at the Ampara hospital.

This attack comes just 4 months after a Home Guard in uniform shot dead Pastor Neil Edirisinghe on the 17th of February, also in Ampara. The gunmen shot the Pastor's wife as well, leaving her critically injured. The accused remain in custody and the Court proceedings are continuing. The next hearing is scheduled for today (24th June).

Please uphold the injured Reverend, his family and the Christian community in Ampara in prayer.

Please also pray for the court proceedings on the murder of Pastor Neil and for the recovery of his widow.