Easter Sunday attack: All living suspects have been arrested: PM

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All living suspects responsible for the Easter Sunday bomb attacks have been apprehended by the security forces so far as two months have elapsed since the carnage, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said yesterday.

Speaking during the opening of a new building of Mallika Navodya school and Samurdhi distribution in Hiniduma, the Prime Minister said investigations will continue to find those who had associated with Zahran’s group. “ Better be careful if you have had even a cup of tea with members of Zahran group as the security forces will question you,” the Prime Minister said.

“The security forces will ask me as to why I divulged all these but I will tell them that I revealed these to do justice to them. Many have questioned us as to what the government had done about the Easter Sunday attacks. Therefore those who question should know what the security forces have done,” he added.

“ I together with some ministers went to the Defence Ministry by 12 pm on April 21 2019 and talked to the security heads. I also conferred with President Maithripala Sirisena. Then I instructed the forces to arrest those responsible for the attack, Security forces were also told them not to spare anyone. the forces were able to arrest first one of the group that carried out the bomb attack. The rest were arrested within two months after the attack. Even foreign diplomats in Colombo were amazed as to how the Sri Lankan security forces were able to nab the culprits so soon. One foreign diplomat told me that it took one month for the security forces in his country to arrest an ISIS cadre after an attack,” he also said.

Prime Minister Wickremesinghe then said it is essential to prevent similar tragedies in the future. He therefore said one must not push innocent Muslims towards radicalization. “One must remember that Muslims in the East provided a lot of vital information on the LTTE during the war. It was the Muslims who helped us to break off Karuna from the LTTE. Therefore it will not be possible to ensure security of this country if Muslims are pushed towards radicalization,” he said.