A court docket in Sri Lanka has sentenced a hardline Buddhist monk to 6 months in jail for threatening the spouse of a lacking cartoonist.
Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero used to be discovered responsible of criminally intimidating Sanya Eknaligoda at a court docket in 2016.
Sri Lanka hardly convicts Buddhist clergymen.
That is the primary time Gnanasara has been jailed, even though he has up to now been accused of hate crimes and anti-Muslim violence.
The monk, who leads the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) or “Buddhist Energy Drive”, had interrupted a court docket listening to during which army intelligence officers have been accused of abducting Sanya Eknaligoda’s husband.
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Prageeth Eknaligoda, a critic of the then executive, went lacking in 2010.
His spouse has led a marketing campaign to track his whereabouts, and accuses the government of now not doing sufficient to research his disappearance.
In his cartoons, Prageeth Eknaligoda depicted problems with media freedom, political energy and social downside. He used to be well known for paintings crucial of the management of then President Mahinda Rajapakse.
Gnanasara used to be discovered responsible on two counts and sentenced to 2 six-month phrases, to be served at the same time as. He used to be additionally ordered to pay 50,000 rupees ($310; £230) in reimbursement to Sandya Eknaligoda.
Correspondents say the court docket ruling is vital within the majority Sinhalese nation, the place it’s virtually unheard-of for a Buddhist monk to be given a custodial sentence.
Remaining yr the monk used to be pursued by way of the police in reference to assaults in opposition to Muslims. He later passed himself in and used to be granted bail.
He has shut hyperlinks with Wirathu, an extremist monk in Myanmar (often known as Burma).