Sri Lanka prosecutor orders probe of nine officers over Easter bombing lapses

Sri Lankan Army soldiers secure the area around St. Anthony's Shrine after a blast in Colombo, Sri Lanka on April 21, 2019. (AP)
Updated 20 June 2019

Sri Lanka prosecutor orders probe of nine officers over Easter bombing lapses

  • More than 250 people including 42 foreigners were killed in the attacks, for which Daesh has claimed responsibility
  • Despite three advance intelligence reports from India on pending attacks, Sri Lanka's top defence officials failed to act before the Easter day suicide bombings by militants

COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's main prosecutor directed the acting police chief to carry out an investigation into nine officers who are suspected of failing to help prevent the Easter Sunday bombings that killed more than 250 people, a document showed.
More than 250 people including 42 foreigners were killed in the attacks, for which Daesh has claimed responsibility. The attacks sent shockwaves through the Indian Ocean island state, which had enjoyed relative peace since a civil war ended a decade ago.
"You are hereby directed to initiate criminal investigations with regard to the lapses of the above officers to prevent/minimize the above attacks," the Attorney General wrote in a letter to the acting police chief seen by Reuters. The letter named the nine senior police officers.
Despite three advance intelligence reports from India on pending attacks, Sri Lanka's top defence officials failed to act before the Easter day suicide bombings by militants that targeted three churches and three luxury hotels.
Authorities said the attacks were carried out by two little-known domestic groups: the National Thawheedh Jamaath (NTJ) and Jamathei Millathu Ibrahim.
Authorities say the threat of more attacks has been contained and the security services have dismantled most of the network linked to the bombings.


Six killed as avalanche buries Indian patrol on disputed glacier

Updated 18 November 2019

Six killed as avalanche buries Indian patrol on disputed glacier

  • The disaster was the latest on the Siachen Glacier at more than 5,000 meters
  • Hundreds of troops from both sides have died in avalanches and from the fierce climate

SRINAGAR: An avalanche on Monday hit an Indian patrol in the world’s highest militarised zone in the Himalayas, killing four soldiers and two porters, an army spokesman said.
The disaster was the latest on the Siachen Glacier at more than 5,000 meters (16,500 feet) that is claimed by India and rival Pakistan.
Hundreds of troops from both sides have died in avalanches and from the fierce climate in the region over the past three decades.
An Indian military spokesman told AFP that the avalanche engulfed eight people in the patrol at the northern end of the glacier in the Karakoram mountain range.
Rescue teams managed to dig the patrol members out of the snow, and they were taken by helicopter to hospital.
“Despite best efforts, six casualties which includes four soldiers and two civilian porters succumbed to extreme hypothermia,” said the spokesman, Col. Rajesh Kalia.
Avalanches are common on the 700-square-kilometer (270-square-mile) glacier, where temperatures regularly fall to minus 60 degrees Celsius (-76 Fahrenheit).
In 2016, 10 Indian soldiers were buried and killed.
About 900 Indian soldiers alone have died on the glacier since 1984, when Indian forces took complete control of Siachen.
The glacier is located at the northern end of the Line of Control that divides Kashmir, which India and Pakistan have fought over since 1947.