Interpol to help Sri Lanka probe foreign links, identify victims

ECONOMYNEXT – Paris-based INTERPOL will deploy a team who will help identify victims of Easter Sunday bombings which killed nearly 300 and injured more than 500 and also help probe any foreign linked Islamists blamed for the attacks.

"Deployed at the request of the Sri Lankan authorities, the Incident Response Team (IRT) will include specialists with expertise in crime scene examination, explosives, counter-terrorism, disaster victim identification and analysis," INTERPOL said in a statement.

"Checks are already being made against the Organization’s Stolen and Lost Travel Documents and nominal databases in order to identify potential investigative leads and international connections.

"If required, additional expertise in digital forensics, biometrics, as well as photo and video analysis will also be added to the team on the ground."

Sri Lankan authorities said all the attackers who died and were arrested so far were Sri Lankans.

But health minister Rajitha Senaratne said questioned remained how an apparently small organization carried out co-ordinated attacks and trained suicide bombers.

Suicide bombers attacked three Churches in the capital Colombo, in Negombo and Baticaloa in the East and there hotels in the capital around 8.45 to 9.30 am.

In addition to Sri Lankans there are also foreign nationals remaining to be identified.

Sri Lanka’s foreign ministry said 31 foreign nationals have been identified among the dead.

But a further 14 foreign nationals are missing and could be among un-indentified bodies kept in Colombo, the foreign ministry said. (Colombo/Apr23/2019-SB)





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