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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

New wave of University Student Protests - Sri Lanka

Buddhist student monks have joined thousands of other university students in a new wave of protests to hit Sri Lanka in recent weeks, forcing the temporary closure of at least two major universities this week and widespread disruption of classes.
Student monks at the seminary Buddha Shrawaka Bhikku University in North Central province staged a protest on 11 January, adding to a spate of demonstrations in universities that involved thousands of students in different parts of the country.

Notably, there have been protests at Sri Jayewardenepura University in Colombo and Rajarata University in North Central province. Both have been closed by the authorities since 8 January to stem the unrest.

Student activists claim that the protests were provoked by the government in order to push a controversial private universities bill through parliament, taking advantage of university closures as students would be unable to gather for large protests.