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The Muslim Council of Britain welcomes expert panel guidance on Sri Lankan ‘compulsory cremations’

PRESS RELEASE

6 JANUARY 2021

THE MUSLIM COUNCIL OF BRITAIN WELCOMES EXPERT PANEL GUIDANCE ON SRI LANKAN ‘COMPULSORY CREMATIONS’

The expert medical panel appointed by the Sri Lankan Ministry of Health has issued its revised guidance on the current ‘compulsory cremation’ policy of COVID-19 deceased.

The panel chaired by Senior Professor in Microbiology, Jennifer Perera, said, ‘’While firmly standing by on the previous recommendation and guidelines on exclusive cremations of dead bodies as the most appropriate method of disposal which was based on the understanding at the time, the expert committee has revised the recommendations on disposal of bodies to include both cremation and burial while adhering to the specified safety precautions.”

The MCB Secretary-General, Harun Khan said: “We welcome the expert panel’s revised guidance which allows for burials and is in line with the World Health Organisations recommendation. This is a positive step and we urge the Sri Lankan Government to reverse the policy of compulsory cremation.”

The MCB is actively supporting the rights of minority groups in Sri Lanka to bury their deceased. The policy of compulsory cremations without good reason is a violation of international law. Following the negative decision by the Supreme Court, to allow burials, the MCB recently instructed leading human rights law firm, Bindmans LLP, to bring this matter to the attention of the United Nations Human Rights Committee for resolution.

[ENDS]

Notes to Editors:

1. For more information, visit the MCB Campaign Against Forced Cremations in Sri Lanka webpage.

2. The Muslim Council of Britain is the UK’s largest Muslim umbrella body with over
500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques,
charities and schools.

For further information please contact:
PO Box 57330, London, E1 2WJ
Tel: 0845 26 26 786
Fax: 0207 247 7079
[email protected]

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