It is questionable whether the top officials who handled the national security during the former government's period had the level of knowledge to understand the contents of various reports sent by State Intelligence Service (SIS) pertaining to Islamic extremism and Zahran's extremist practices, former SIS Director SDIG Nilantha Jayawardena informed PCoI probing Easter Sunday attacks last week.
Jayawardena made the this statement while responding to a question posed by Counsel Dilshan Jayasuriya who appeared for former Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando, during the cross-examination.
Counsel Jayasuriya questioned the witness on the fact that SIS's failure to send a written document with regard to the foreign information received on April 4, 2019 about the imminent terror attack.
"There are two types of intelligence, strategic and operational. Most of the time we are sharing strategic intelligence with the Defence Secretary. With regard to the April 4 foreign intelligence, it was not a specific information which can be sent to a senior official as Defence Secretary. We have to develop the particular information to an intelligence," responding to the question Mr. Jayawardena said.
Mr. Jayawardena said that SIS duty is to provide information with regard to certain findings and based on those facts, investigators have to develop the information.
"As the then SIS director, I had shared the foreign intelligence in writing among former Chief of National Intelligence (CNI) Sisira Mendis and former IGP Pujith Jayasundara," he said.
Jayawardena also highlighted the fact that the reports on Zahran and his activities, spreading of Islamic extremism, had been shared with political and security heads on a number of occasions before receiving foreign intelligence with regard to imminent terror attack; but there was no feedback from any of those officials. (Yoshitha Perera)