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Sri Lanka's militant monk rejects Dalai Lama as spiritual leader

Published on Jul 22, 2014 5:29 PM
 
In this photograph taken on March 29, 2013 , Sri Lankan Buddhist monk Galagodaatte Gnanasara speaks during a press conference in Colombo, denying involvement in an overnight attack against a Muslim-owned clothing store just outside the capital. The island's top firebrand monk on July 22, 2014 criticised the Dalai Lama for urging Sri Lankan Buddhists to halt violence against minority Muslims and rejected the Tibetan as a global spiritual leader. -- PHOTO: AFP

COLOMBO (AFP) - A firebrand Sri Lankan monk on Tuesday criticised the Dalai Lama for urging the island's Buddhists to halt violence against minority Muslims and rejected him as a global spiritual leader.

Buddhist monk Galagodaatte Gnanasara said the Dalai Lama was ignorant of the "true situation in Sri Lanka" and accused the Nobel Peace Prize winner of being a victim of "Islamic extremist propoganda".

The exiled Tibetan spiritual leader earlier this month asked Buddhists in Myanmar and Sri Lanka "to imagine an image of Buddha" before committing any crimes against Muslims, in a plea to halt the violence.

"We don't accept the Dalai Lama as a world leader of Buddhists," Gnanasara told reporters. "He is a creation of the West. For them, he is to Buddhists what the Pope is to Catholics, but not for us."

 
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