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Last updated: 15 December, 2004 - Published 18:02 GMT
 
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FMM condemns concert bomb attack
 
An injured police officer lying in the hospital
Two people dead and many more injured in the attack
Colombo based media watchdog Free Media Movement (FMM) condemned the bomb attack against a mega musical show held in Colombo on Saturday.

Two people died and at least 10 have been injured in the attack on the concert in which popular Bollywood stars including Shahrukh Khan performed.

Lal Jayasundara, a photojournalist for the Wijeya newspaper group and a young woman have been killed instantly on the attack.

Sunanda Deshapriya of the FMM told BBC Sandeshaya that Jayasundara was killed while on duty.

The photo journalist had been standing close to the stage and taking photographs of the show when the bomb exploded.

"Sinhala Buddhist extremist groups, including a section of the Sanga-dominated Hela Urumaya political party had launched a protest campaign against the show. The protests became violent and directed their anger towards the individuals attending the show," said the FMM statement issued on Tuesday.

Government "aggression"

Protesting monks
"Protests became violent and directed their anger towards the public"

Both Indian and Sri Lankan governments condemned the bomb attack and the Indian stars described it as a "terrorist act".

In a statement on Sunday the Sri Lankan government said that security authorities are "conducting intense investigations into the incident on a priority basis and will spare no effort to bring the offenders to justice."

Accepting the protesters' right to demonstrate peacefully, the FMM says however, using violence to disrupt a musical show is a clear violation of others' right to enjoy.

" At the same time, FMM does not condone the excessive use of force by police in dispersing the protesters."

FMM also expressed concern that the government's apparent "aggression against non-state media on political grounds".

"Minister of Information Mangala Samaraweera has called for a special committee to look into the role the media played in the incident. FMM opposes any witch hunt against non-state media on political grounds around this regrettable incident," said the statement.

 
 
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