Military on alert over attempts to promote terrorism in Sri Lanka

By Vyshnavy Velrajh

The military is on alert over attempts to promote terrorism and extremism in Sri Lanka.

Military spokesman Brigadier Nilantha Premaratne told Colombo Gazette that the military was collecting intelligence and was conducting constant surveillances in this regard.

He said the Police and Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) are conducting separate investigations into people suspected of promoting extremism or terrorism in Sri Lanka.

Brigadier Premaratne said the military and Police hold joint meetings on a regular basis to coordinate and share data collected thus far.

He said the military is assisting the Police by providing intelligence reports and other required data for the investigations.

Meanwhile, Media Coordinator to the Ministry of Defence Colonel Chandima Kumarasinghe told Colombo Gazette the tri-forces are engaged in their relevant duties to trace those involved in promoting extremism and terrorism in the country.

He said the tri-forces are conducting constant special operations in this regard.

Colonel Kumarasinghe further said the operations are being conducted to ensure national security in order for the citizens of the country to live in peace and harmony.

Eight suspects have been arrested on charges of promoting extremism and Wahabism in Sri Lanka in March 2021, alone.

On 21st march, a 44-year-old suspect from Mawanella was arrested by the TID for promoting extremism.

Thereafter, a suspect deported from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) was arrested for promoting extremism in Sri Lanka.

On 26th March, two more suspects, including a close associate of the mastermind of the Easter Sunday attacks Zaharan Hashim were arrested by the TID.

Four suspects were arrested for promoting the ideology of Zahran Hashim, on 1st April.

Meanwhile, seven suspects have been arrested on charges of promoting the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), since November 2020.

Four suspects were arrested for promoting the LTTE on social media in November 2020.

Thereafter in February 2021, a youth from Wattala was arrested for promoting the LTTE using the video-sharing social networking service TikTok.

In March, two suspects, including a woman, were arrested for promoting the LTTE via a YouTube channel and a website in Jaffna. (Colombo Gazette)

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