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* President stresses need to expose everyone behind Easter Sunday attacks
Mon, Dec 2, 2019, 11:00 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Dec 02, Colombo: President Gotabaya Rajapaksa met with members of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) to investigate and inquire into the Easter Sunday terror attacks and exchanged views at the Presidential Secretariat this evening (02), President's Media Division said.

Chairman of the five-member Commission, Court of Appeal Judge Janaka de Silva explaining the scope and the composition of the Commission briefed the President on the progress made so far. He said that prior information received about an impending attack have not been taken seriously by the relevant officials.

He said that he had reasons to believe that certain officials have prepared forged documents in order to cover this aspect of the story.

President Rajapaksa emphasized the need to identify roots and modalities of the attack and to bring those who were responsible before the law. President said that His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith was also of the same view in this connection.

"When I was the Defense Secretary the Security Council met regularly. The security situation was continuously reviewed with intelligence officers. If there was any information that threatened national security necessary action was taken in no time. That was how we were able to deport 160 preachers who were propagating extremist ideas," the President added.

"The lackadaisical attitude towards national security prevailed during the previous administration led to the gradual collapse of the intelligence mechanism. As a result the spread of Islamic extremism could not be contained," President Rajapaksa said.

While stressing that all information relating to the Easter Sunday attacks must be uncovered, he requested the PCoI to make recommendations to prevent recurrence of such tragedies. The President also reiterated the need to expose everyone behind this sinister process.

President Rajapaksa offered to provide all necessary facilities required by the Commission.

Former President Maithripala Sirisena appointed the five-member Commission in September 2019 to inquire into Easter Sunday Bomb attacks on April 21and report or take necessary action.

Other members of the Commission are Court of Appeal Judge Nissanka Bandula Karunaratne, Retired Court of Appeal Judge Nihal Sunil Rajapaksha, retired HC Judge Bandula Kumara Atapattu and former Secretary to the Ministry of Justice W. M. M. Adikari.


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