Labor utterly condemns the terrible events in Sri Lanka, which appear to be deliberately targeted attacks on churches and, separately, people at hotels.
It is a particularly despicable act to target worshippers at one of the holiest times of the year for Christians, Easter Sunday.
An attack on any religion is an attack on all religions; it is an assault on our common humanity. We all share a responsibility to unite, condemn and defeat such an attack on our values and our way of life.
We note authorities are still investigating and no group has yet claimed responsibility.
But whoever is responsible and for whatever motive, Labor, and all Australians, reject such acts of hatred and terror.
We will continue to stand with all peace-loving people of faith around the world and we will not let hate divide us.
Our sympathies go to all those affected in Sri Lanka, and to the Sri Lankan people as whole. We mourn with the Australian-Sri Lankan community, who will be hard-hit by this tragedy and the impact it has on their loved ones, family and friends at home.
We thank the Australian High Commissioner and all staff who are working under difficult circumstances.
Australians concerned for the welfare of family and friends in the area should attempt to contact them directly. If you cannot contact them and have fears for their safety, DFAT’s Consular Emergency Centre can be contacted on 1300 555 135 (within Australia) or +61 2 6261 3305 (from overseas).
Labor is receiving briefings and will support the caretaker government to provide whatever appropriate support is required to Sri Lanka in this time of tragedy.
Authorised by Noah Carroll, ALP, Canberra.