Easter Sunday carnage could have been prevented if then government heeded advance intelligence – Prime Minister

Mahinda Rajapaksa - Prime Minister of Sri Lanka

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, yesterday, stated that the Easter Sunday carnage was the worst terrorist attack, on civilians, ever to take place, not only in Asia, but also anywhere in the world, and it could have easily been prevented had those in charge of security and power acted promptly on the warnings.

In a statement titled ‘Remembering the Easter Sunday Attacks’ the Premier said: “We in Sri Lanka are no strangers to suicide bombings. However, the Easter Sunday bombings differed from what we had experienced during the 30-year war against separatism. The intelligence service of a friendly country had provided advance warning to the then Sri Lankan government of the possible dates and targets of the attacks, and the names, addresses, identity card numbers and even telephone numbers of the terrorists involved. Therefore, this attack could easily have been prevented.”

Full text of Prime Minister Rajapaksa’s statement:

“Last year, on Easter Sunday – 21st April 2019, suicide bombings on three Christian churches,as well as three prominent hotels, in Colombo, killed over 250 and injured more than 500 people. Most of the victims were worshipers who had gathered in Churches to celebrate the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. This was the worst terrorist attack, on civilians, ever to take place, not only in Asia, but also anywhere in the world. The Tokyo poison gas attack of 1995, the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995, the London bombings of 2005 and the Mumbai attacks of 2008, which are internationally remembered, were all of a lesser magnitude than the Easter Sunday bombings in Sri Lanka. One victim of the Easter Sunday attacks died recently after battling for life for nearly a year. Some victims are still receiving treatment for their injuries.

“We in Sri Lanka are no strangers to suicide bombings. However, the Easter

Sunday bombings differed from what we had experienced during the 30-year war against separatism. The intelligence service of a friendly country had provided advance warning to the then Sri Lankan government of the possible dates and targets of the attacks, and the names, addresses, identity card numbers and even telephone numbers of the terrorists involved. Therefore, this attack could easily have been prevented.

“The Archbishop of Colombo, His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith has requested all Catholics to light a lamp in their homes in remembrance of the victims. I wish to request Sri Lankans to remember those who died, were injured, and those who were disabled due to the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks in accordance with their own faiths.

“I wish you the blessings of the Triple Gem. May God Bless you!”

(Source: The Island)

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