Lanka bans Islamist terror outfit NTJ, properties will be seized… India issues travel advisorynewstolive - April 28, 2019 51 0 COMMENTS
Colombo, Apr 27: 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.
National Thawheed Jammath (NTJ) leader Zahran Hashim, the mastermind behind the attacks, was killed inside the Shangri La hotel where 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.
The move to ban the outfits came after the Sri 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.
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.
Meanwhile, India on Saturday issued an advisory asking its nationals to avoid “non-essential travel” to Sri Lanka where the situation continues to be precarious in the wake of last Sundays terror attacks.
“In view of the prevailing security situation in Sri Lanka in the aftermath of terror attacks on 21 April 2019, Indian nationals intending to travel to Sri Lanka are advised not to undertake non-essential travel,” the advisory issued by the External Affairs Ministry said.
“The Government of Sri Lanka has beefed up the security in the country. A nation-wide emergency including night time curfew is in place at present which may also affect travel within Sri Lanka,” it added.
Sri Lanka was hit by multiple blasts on Easter Sunday which claimed the lives of 253 people and injured over 500, in the bloodiest attacks in Sri Lanka since the civil war ended a decade ago.
Last night, 15 people, including six children, were killed in a gunfight when the Sri Lankan security forces raided a hideout of suspected terrorists, three of whom were suicide bombers who blew themselves up, according to the local authorities.
The Indian advisory added: “In case of those undertaking essential/emergency travels, they can contact the High Commission of India in Colombo or the Assistant High Commission in Kandy/Consulates in Hambantota and Jaffna in case of requirement of any assistance.”
The advisory said the helpline numbers of the Indian High Commission are available on the mission’s websi