By Yohan Perera and Ajith Siriwardana
UPFA MP and SLFP General Secretary Dayasiri Jayasekera who testified before the parliamentary select committee probing the Easter Sunday attacks said an international force is behind the Easter Sunday attacks. The MP said he also does not think that ISIS was behind the attack.
Mr. Jayasekera said National Thowheed Jama’at Leader Zahran was used by some international forces to fulfil their objectives. “It is common knowledge that certain countries are getting involved in Sri Lanka’s affairs. Therefore I don’t believe the Easter Sunday attacks were carried out by ISIS. There are certain international forces that used Zahran as a tool. Therefore I am sure that there is an international force behind the attacks.
Responding to a question raised by the Select Committee Chairman Ananda Kumarasiri on the statement that have been made by him that the bomber refrained from exploding himself at Hotel Taj Hotel because there were ‘certain people’ there on Easter Sunday, the MP said it is not difficult to find out as to who was present in the hotel at that time.
“It is not difficult to find out whether the suicide device did not work, or whether the bomber got any orders from his superiors not to set off the device as there were ‘certain people’ inside the hotel at that time. Asked whether he could name as to who were inside Hotel Taj, Mr. Jayasekera said he was not aware of any detail.
“I only said I was suspecting that Hotel Taj was spared for a specific reason. I don’t know any inside details on who was inside the hotel,” he said.
He said the defence establishments or the PSC should find as to why the attackers spared Hotel Taj.
Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka at that time said MP’s statement to media implies that he knew something about it and that he would reveal this in the future. Then he questioned Mr. Jayasekera as to whether he proposes that some investigations has to be carried out to determine as to why Hotel Taj was spared. Mr. Jayasekera then said that was what he meant.
Responding to a question raised by PSC member Asu Marasinghe whether he had attended Security Council meeting, Mr. Jayasekera said he did so the day after the attacks.
He said he listened to a presentation on security measures taken by the defence authorities after the bomb attacks. Then Mr. Marasinghe questioned as to how the opposition MPs were called for the Security Council meeting. Mr. Jayasekera responded by saying that President has the power to decide as to who could be called for the Security Council meeting.
Field Marshal Fonseka then said President does not have the power to call in anyone according to his whims and fancies as there are specific persons who could be called for such a meeting.
Then MP Jayasekera asked whether there was any written procedure about the Security Council meeting. MP Fonseka then said there is a gazette notification which has been issued with regard to it. Mr. Jayasekera then said the opposition MPs attended the Security Council meeting as they supported President who is the Minister of Defence though they were in the opposition.
UPFA MP Dayasiri Jayasekara testifying before the Parliamentary Select Committee looking into the Easter Sunday attacks yesterday.
Pic by Pradeep Dilrukshana