Lanka orders fresh probe into Easter suicide bombings

AFP
September 23,2019

COLOMBO: A fresh inquiry into the Easter suicide bombings that hit Sri Lanka killing at least 258 people was ordered by president Maithripala Sirisena on Sunday, after concerns from the Catholic...

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COLOMBO: A fresh inquiry into the Easter suicide bombings that hit Sri Lanka killing at least 258 people was ordered by president Maithripala Sirisena on Sunday, after concerns from the Catholic Church that current probes are not independent.

The government has blamed a local jihadi group, the National Thowheeth Jama'ath (NTJ) for the April 21 attacks on three churches and three luxury hotels, while the Islamic State group also claimed responsibility. Sirisena said the commission has wide judicial powers to gather evidence on those responsible for the bombings, and to probe security and intelligence lapses.

The five-member panel is headed by a Court of Appeal judge and includes three other judges and a retired civil servant. It is to report back with recommendations within three months. The inquiry was launched amid fears voiced by the country´s Catholic Church that a parliamentary probe and police investigation into the attacks are not sufficiently independent. While the newly-launched inquiry is being carried out by a cross-section of MPs, many opposition members are boycotting it.


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