Ranil tells House intel shortfall led to Easter attacks

Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka

UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday (11), admitted in Parliament there was a shortfall in intelligence services in the country when the Easter Sunday terror attacks in 2019 took place and in-depth investigations should be conducted in this regard, he said.

Responding to the statement of Public Security Minister Sarath Weerasekara, who alleged that the former Government ignored the Muslim youth who went to Syria to participate in ISIS training there and that he would be instrumental in launching  a terror attack in Sri Lanka, the former Premier said that he was not informed about intelligence information received from India regarding the attack. “It should be investigated what they did after receiving information about a possible attack on 4 April 2019 from India. I was never informed about it.

I was never informed about the impending attacks though the matter was discussed at the Security Council during that time. There was a collapse and we have to accept that. We never removed any intelligence officer. We appointed a Parliamentary Select Committee to find out why that happened as we had to make sure that the same thing would not be happened in future,” Wickremesinghe said.

Speaking further, Wickremesinghe said that none of the youth who went Syria to join with the ISIS participated in the Easter Sunday attacks as per the investigations carried out just after the attacks.

The UNP Leader also responded to Weerasekara’s allegations on the Millennium City military safe house debacle in 2002, claiming that at that time there was an order given by former President Chandrika Kumaratunge not to locate safe houses in Colombo “This order was neglected by the then Army Commander General Balagalla. He should be held responsible for that. I ordered the relevant persons to ensure the safety of those intelligence officers and provide them safe shelters,” he claimed.

(Source: Ceylon Today – By Gagani Weerakoon and Methmalie Dissanayake)