A gazette notice has been issued banning 11 Islamic groups in Sri Lanka, including the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has signed the gazette notice saying the ban is part of efforts of the Government of Sri Lanka made in good faith for the purpose of ensuring the continuance of peace within the country and in the interest of national security, public order, and the rule of law.
The 11 groups banned are the United Thawheed (Thowheedh) Jamma’ath (UTJ), Ceylon Thawheed (Thowheedh) Jamma’ath (CTJ), Sri Lanka Thawheed (Thowheedh) Jamma’ath (SLTJ), All Ceylon Thawheed (Thowheedh) Jamma’ath (ACTJ), Jamiyathul Ansaari Sunnathul Mohomadiya (JASM) alias Jamma’ath Ansaaris Sunnathil Mohomadiya Organization alias All Ceylon Jam-E- Athu Ansaris Sunnathil Mohammadiya alias Ansaris Sunnathil Mohammadiya Association alias Jama’ath Ansaris Sunnathil Mohammadiya, Dharul Adhar alias Jamiul Athar Mosque alias Dharul Athar Quran Madrasa alias Dharul Aadhaar Ath’thabawiyya, Sri Lanka Islamic Student Movement (SLISM) alias Jamia, Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) alias Al – Dawlah al – Islamiah Dawla Islamia, AL – Qaeda, Save the Pearls alias Save the Pearl Society and Super Muslim.
The gazette notes that no person shall, within or outside Sri Lanka be a member or cadre of, provide leadership to, wear, display, hoist or possess the uniform, dress, symbol, emblem, or flag of, summon, convene, conduct or take part in a meeting of, obtain membership or join, harbour, conceal, assist a member, cadre or any other associate of, promote, encourage, support, advice, assist, act on behalf of, organize or take part in any activity or event of, donate or contribute money or material to, procure, store, transport, possess or distribute material for or of, espouse the cause of or represent or engage in any transaction with or cause the dissemination of information on behalf of such groups.
Any person who acts in contravention of the regulations, commits an offence, and shall on conviction by the High Court for the Western Province established under Article 154P of the Constitution holden in Colombo, be sentenced to a term of imprisonment not exceeding twenty years.
Any person who conspires to commit or attempts, abets or engages in any conduct in preparation to commit an offence in contravention of the regulations, commits an offence, and shall on conviction by the High Court for the Western Province established under Article 154P of the Constitution holden in Colombo, be sentenced to a term of imprisonment not exceeding ten years.
The gazette also notes that for the avoidance of doubts, it is hereby declared that the provisions of these regulations shall not in any way affect the right of an international organization which the Secretary to the Ministry of the Minister assigned the subject of Defence may from time to time specify by order in writing, and which has entered into an agreement with the Government of Sri Lanka, to engage in any activity connected with the rendering of humanitarian assistance. (Colombo Gazette)