Sri Lanka's President accused the security officials of not warning him of terrorist threats, saying that the country's indictment of military secrets after his long civil war was vulnerable to attacks as he tried on Friday to distract the bombings on Easter Sunday
"All officials who have neglected their duties will be brought to justice," said President Maithripala Sirisena, according to local news agencies . He added that in the coming days a "complete transformation" of the security apparatus would take place.
The government of Sri Lanka has been consumed in recent months and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, a rival of the president, complained about the exclusion of security meetings.
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Mr. Sirisena said he did not receive any important information on Friday, accusing Secretary of Defense Hemasiri Fernando and Police Inspector General Pujith Jayasundara, as well as several high-ranking police officers. Mr. Fernando resigned on Thursday and the President said he believed in Mr. Jayasundara on Friday.
Sirisena, who had taken the camera to the reporters in Colombo, the capital, said the security forces had carried out far-reaching arrests. So far, more than 70 people have been arrested. He said he believed that there were 140 supporters of the Islamic State in Sri Lanka.
Hundreds of police officers ransacked the capital Thursday in search of three men and three women allegedly linked to the bombings may plan new attacks. Friday prayers for Muslims and weekend services for Catholics were abandoned for fear of new violence.
More and more foreign governments have warned their citizens about increased risks in Sri Lanka. On Friday, Britain advised against "traveling to Sri Lanka against any travel that is not strictly necessary." And Thailand warned its citizens to avoid religious centers from Friday to Sunday.
In his comments on Friday, Mr. Sirisena blamed The campaign against illegal drugs may have had an impact on the attacks because of links between drug gangs and terrorism. So far, there are no indications of links between the local extremist group, which is believed to have carried out the bombings – National Thowheeth Jama & # 39; ath – and illegal drugs.
Mr. Sirisena also said that Zaharan Hashim head of National Thowheeth Jama'at, died in a bomb attack on Shangri-La Hotel. Mr. Zaharan appeared in a video of seven masked men who declared their loyalty to the Islamic State, but the exact role of the extremist group, which once had large areas in Iraq and Syria, is unclear.
The President said intelligence failures could be partly due to people being blamed in the state security apparatus during the quarter-century civil war that ended in 2009.
He himself is the protector of the security apparatus. and accused his opponents of undermining the national defense of the country.
He added that his defense of the armed forces was one of the reasons for his break with the government, according to News First, a news magazine from Sri Lanka. He said he felt obliged to send intelligence officers overseas to protect them from harassment.