Two years ago, the Time magazine depicted saffron-robed Wirathu, a Buddhist monk from Mandalay in Myanmar (Burma), as the ‘Face of Buddhist Terror.’ It was a very candid description of the terrorist Buddhist monk who was convicted of inciting deadly anti-Muslim pogroms in 2003. After serving only seven years of his 25-year prison term behind the bars he was released in 2010 by Thein Sein’s government reportedly to act as its hound-dog, a task which he had loyally performed ever since. He has been the driving force behind the fascist Buddhist organization – Ma Ba Tha – that has played a major role in genocidal activities directed by Buddhists against Muslims of Myanmar.
In January 2015, Wirathu called Yanghee Lee, a U.N. special envoy on human rights, a “whore” and a “bitch” after she criticized a bill restricting interfaith marriage and religious conversions in Myanmar. It was among four race and religion bills championed by Ma Ba Tha and signed into law last year despite opposition from the NLD party, led by Suu Kyi. Although his racist, bigoted and sexist rants and criminal incitements have been condemned in many quarters Wirathu remains very popular amongst many Buddhists, not just inside his native Myanmar but also outside in places like Sri Lanka.
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