Naufer Maulavi named as mastermind of Easter Sunday attacks

Naufer Maulavi has been named as the mastermind of the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks.

This was revealed by Public Security Minister Sarath Weerasekera at a special media briefing today.

The Minister said that Naufer is currently detained.

He added that Jamaat-e-Islami member Ajjur Akbar has been identified as another mastermind of the attacks, along with Naufer Maulavi.

Minister Weerasekera said Naufer Maulavi had followed the ideologies of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who introduced the Islamic State and its ideologies in 2014.

Investigations had found that Noufer Maulavi had gotten involved with Baghdadi and had commenced promoting the IS ideologies in Sri Lanka.

Naufer Maulavi is further found to have influenced the ringleader of the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks Zahran Hashim in 2016.

Minister Sarath Weerasekera said Naufer Maulavi is currently detained and is among 32 suspects currently remanded on charges of murder.

The Minister said investigations have been completed against the 32 suspects, and recommendations have been made to the Attorney General to file legal action against them.

He said 75 other suspects are currently detained under a detention order, while 211 suspects have been remanded in connection to the attacks.

Minister Weerasekera said the 32 suspects against whom legal action is to be filed, are among the 211 suspects currently in remand custody.

The Minister of Public Security said the Police have handed over the investigations into the 32 suspects and have also provided necessary evidences to the Attorney General.

He said the Attorney General will initiate legal action against the suspects soon.

Minister Sarath Weerasekera further said that investigations into the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks will continue.

He said that there might be a possibility for more masterminds of the attacks to be identified.

The Minister said however, as of now Naufer Maulavi and Ajjur Akbar have been identified as the key masterminds of the attacks. (Colombo Gazette)