Sri Lanka bans Easter blasts mastermind National Thawheed Jammath linked to ISIS

NTJ leader Zahran Hashim was huimself killed inside the Shangri La hotel were he detonated himself.

Published: 28th April 2019 12:40 PM  |   Last Updated: 28th April 2019 12:57 PM   |  A+A-

St sebastian church, sri lanka, suicide bomber

An attacker at St Sebastian Church, Sri Lanka is circled (Photo | Video screengrab, ANI)


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka on Saturday banned local Islamist extremist outfit NTJ and a splinter group, which are linked to the ISIS that has claimed the responsibility for the Easter bombings that left 253 people dead and several hundreds injured.

ALSO READ| Political rivalry seen as factor in Sri Lanka Easter blasts

National Thawheed Jammath (NTJ) leader Zahran Hashim, the mastermind behind the attacks, was killed inside the Shangri La hotel were he detonated himself.

President Maithripala Sirisena used emergency powers to ban the NTJ and a splinter group identified as Jamathei Millathu Ibraheem (JMI), a statement said. "All movable and immovable property of these two organisations will be confiscated," the statement said.

ALSO READ| Sri Lanka arrested 20 bombing suspects over past 24 hours: Reports

The move to ban the outfits came after the Lankan Parliament adopted a newly-enforced emergency regulation on Wednesday following a series of eight coordinated blasts, which ripped through three churches and three high-end hotels frequented by tourists on April 19 in the country's deadliest violence since the devastating civil war ended in 2009.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Friday said the country needs new laws to deal with threats posed by local terror outfits linked to ISIS. "The definition on aiding terrorism is very narrow. Therefore, the laws are not strong to deal with a situation like this. We have to widen the scope of these laws to counter global terrorism. Not only they (the terrorists) should be arrested, their assets also need to be confiscated," he said in a televised address.

ALSO READ| Sri Lanka's pain post Easter blasts fuels ugly debate in India

The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for the Easter terror attacks on three Catholic churches and three luxury hotels but the government has blamed a local Islamist extremist group, National Tawheed Jamath (NTJ), for the bombings.

Stay up to date on all the latest World news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp