Shootout in Sri Lanka as police hunt Easter Islamist bombers

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka security forces who were hunting Islamist suicide bombers in Eastern Sri Lanka were shot at by an unidentified gunmen, where a hideout was discovered earlier in the day, police said.

"Military and Special Task Force officers are securing the area," Police Spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera told local television.

Immediate curfew had been involved in Samanthurai and two other police divisions, police spokesman said.

Earlier in the day police raided a hideout in Eastern Sri Lanka which could be where suicide bombers were shown making a video pledge by Islamic State, a radical Islamist organisation.

Police said a backdrop similar to the ones shown in the video and robes worn by alleged suicide bombers and Islamic State flags were found in the location.

Also found were 150 gelignite sticks, a camera drone, around 100,000 steel balls and other material such as a camera drone.

Suspected Islamists bombed three Christian churches and three hotels in coordinated attacks on Easter Sunday.

Authorities say the attacks were carried out by the more extremist members of a group called National Thowheed Jama’at and Jamiathul Millatu Ibrahim fi Seilani.

Many came from affluent and educated families. (Colombo/April27/2019-SB)





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