Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena on Friday announced that Inspector General of Police (IGP) Pujith Jayasundara will resign later in the day after the police chief was asked to quit over mishandling of intelligence reports ahead of the Easter Sunday bombings.
While speaking to the media in Colombo, Sirisena reiterated both the IGP and the outgoing Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando did not fulfil their responsibilities, reports the Daily Mirror.
The President added that the government should take responsibility for the devastating Easter Sunday carnage and for weakening the intelligence services.
Earlier in the day, Sri Lanka had released photographs of six suspects, including three women.
Sirisena’s announcement comes after Fernando, who came under fire with regard to a statement he made over the terror attacks and the way he handled the situation, tendered his resignation to the President on Thursday night.
At the press conference on Friday, the President also said the terrorists who carried out the serial blasts have a link to the drug trade. “Let’s not forget the connection between the war against narcotics and terrorism,” he said.
Sirisena said so far Sri Lankan authorities have found out about 140 people linked to the ISIS group and more than 70 of them have been arrested.
Nine suicide bombers believed to be the members of a local terror group called National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ), carried out a series of a devastating blast that tore through three churches and three luxury hotel on Easter Sunday.
The blast targeted St Anthony’s Church in Colombo, St. Sebastian’s Church In the western coastal town of Negombo and Zion Church in the eastern town of Batticaloa around 8:45 am (local time) as the Easter Sunday mass were in progress.
The toll in the Sunday blasts was brought down on Thursday by over 100 from 359 to “about 253” after the Health Ministry blamed “a calculation error” for the higher figure.
(With agency inputs)