Sri Lanka and the burdens of history

Low birth rates among Tamils coupled with outward migrations has seen the proportion of Sri Lankan Tamils fall from a post WW II peak of 13%, while the proportion Singhalese population has remained fairly stable. Muslims, who when I visited were known for their large families, now make up more than 9% of the population, allowing them to become a crucial swing vote within the parliament. Clearly this changing demographic is pressuring the established power structure and has given rise to a whole new set of political and ethnic tensions. With the backdrop of international Islamic extremism, is it any wonder that this island is vulnerable to forces intent on undermining peace, stability, and democratic norms?

World – New York Daily News

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