Pompeo will be joined by Defense Secretary Mark Esper in New Delhi on Monday and Tuesday for annual talks.
The outage hit the entire nation of 21 million people at around midday, and although power returned to some parts of the country after six hours, Colombo was in darkness as night fell.
Hua said China had always opposed the Indian side’s “entry of Chinese territory in the western section’’ of the Sino-Indian border into the administrative jurisdiction of India.
“This position is firm and consistent and has never changed. Recently, the Indian side has continued to damage China’s territorial sovereignty by unilaterally modifying the form of domestic law. This practice is unacceptable and will not have any effect,’’ she said.
The Indian Air Force operation inside Pakistan was also an electoral campaign issue highlighted extensively by the BJP and Modi as an achievement of a muscular security policy.
Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi suggested the reason was India’s internal politics, after Modi had made “Pakistan bashing” the central theme of his election campaign.
A thorough report by Amnesty International is harshly critical of Israel’s policies on arms exports. According to the report written in Hebrew by the organization’s Israeli branch, Israeli companies continue to export weapons to countries that systematically violate human rights. Israeli-made weapons are also found in the hands of armies and organizations committing war crimes. The report points to eight such countries that have received arms from Israel in recent years.
India Today’s Anti-Fake News War Room (AFWA) has found the claim to be false, as the viral video has no relation with the recent attacks. This is a video of a protest that happened in 2013 in London.
The video which has been circulated so aggressively by social media users is not representative of any recent event. It was shot in 2013. A protest had been organised in London against the Sri Lankan government, outside the Sri Lankan embassy. The backdrop to this protest was the campaign organised by the Bodu Bala Sena, a hardline Sinhalese Buddhist nationalist organisation, against the Muslim community over the ‘growing rise of Islamism’ in the island nation.
Mr Parker said that his staff were doing “extraordinary things” to keep the country safe in the face of such dangers, thwarting plots and saving lives. But he cautioned that the increasingly “vast amounts” of material on smartphones and the scale of social media output meant that more data than ever was being created at the same time as encryption was making it harder for MI5 to access it.
Sky’s foreign affairs editor, Deborah Haynes, said: „Investigators are looking in detail at how the attackers, captured on CCTV, seem to be looking at their mobile phones – potentially receiving instructions.“
President Sirisena explained that authorities are aware of „a small group“ of Sri Lankans who have travelled abroad to receive training from IS over the past decade.
The group’s suggestion of the establishment of a single source of communication regarding national security matters (NSC Media Centre) is to ensure the Government does not let Ministers make ad hoc and often poorly-informed statements, likely with the desired goal of gaining local political mileage and international visibility. “This is confusing Sri Lankans, and embarrassing Sri Lanka on the international stage. It causes anguish among different communities, and also deteriorates trust in the Government,” they opined.
Questions are being raised about how much President Maithripala Sirisena knew about warnings provided by foreign intelligence agencies ahead of the Easter Sunday bombings that left at least 253 people dead and injured more than 450.
State Intelligence Service (SIS) Director Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police Nilantha Jayawardena provided detailed reports to the President on at least three occasions, authoritative and multiple sources with close knowledge of the inner workings of the Defence establishment confirmed to Daily FT.
Seine Bewunderung für Duterte scheint tief zu gründen. Schon im vergangenen Sommer begrüsste Sirisena die Gewaltorgie im südostasiatischen Inselreich. Gleichzeitig hob Sri Lanka ein Moratorium für die Todesstrafe auf. Nach der von Sirisena verursachten Verfassungskrise, die den Inselstaat zwei Monate lahmlegte und vor der Weltöffentlichkeit blamierte, muss die Versuchung umso grösser sein, den starken Mann zu markieren.
But many officials and lawmakers have said, publicly and privately, that they doubted the president was unaware of the intelligence on an imminent threat.
In addition to being president, Mr. Sirisena also leads the Defense Ministry, which oversees the work of much of the intelligence agencies. The officials say it is impossible that he would not have been briefed on a memo about threats that others at much lower levels had heard about.
President Sirisena was informed about the foreign intelligence reports predicting the attacks on at least three separate occasions Colombo Telegraph can exclusively reveal today.
All three briefings were conducted by Head of the State Intelligence Service Senior DIG Nilantha Jayawardane. Jayawardane met Sirisena personally to brief him on 11th April and 16th April. President Sirisena then travelled overseas soon after the New Year holidays.
“The government from the very beginning wanted to keep the minority vote with them, so they didn’t take any action,” Rajapaksa said.
The violent attacks, the ensuing political uncertainty and an upsurge in nationalism is almost certainly going to strengthen the Rajapaksa family, according to Alan Keenan, a London-based senior Sri Lanka analyst for the International Crisis Group who has lived on and off in the country for nearly two decades.
(26. April 2019)
A police spokesman said Friday that police forces had raided a house in Sammanthurai, a town on the east coast, and that after a gun battle they seized an Islamic State flag, explosives and clothes they said may have belonged to some of the Easter suicide attackers. It was not immediately clear who had been inside the house or whether any occupant had been killed. Police said the clothes matched those worn in a video that the attackers posted online before the bombings.
(7. März 2019)
It said the government will seek an extension of the timeline of the UHRC resolution 30/1 of October 01, 2015, through a co-sponsored roll-over resolution at the ongoing 40th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
The statement stands in contrast with President Sirisena’s comments on Wednesday that he would send his own team to the UNHRC session later this month to seek a reprieve. He said the UN must allow Sri Lanka to resolve its own issues without digging into past.
(6. März 2019)
However, at the 30th session, the UNHRC relaxed its call for an international inquiry by opting for a hybrid court that included both international and local judges and prosecutors to conduct the probe into war crimes. At the UNHRC’s 34th Session in March 2017, the Sri Lankan government was allowed by way of Resolution 34/1 a period of two years to meet the requirements outlined in the 30/1 Resolution.
(16. September 2018)
This debate has been in progress since Lanka was granted independence by the British in 1948. It involves the disfranchisement of plantation Tamils in 1948, the passing of the Official Language Bill (better known as the Sinhala Only Bill) in 1956, the 1958 riots against the Tamil community and those in 1977, the two insurrections by the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (Peoples Liberation Front – JVP) which were brutally suppressed, and the 1972 and 1977 constitutions, both of which stated that Sri Lanka is a Sinhala Buddhist country. These are matters which the country’s elite have consistently downplayed.
1983 was a pivotal year in the history of post-independence Sri Lanka. It was in July of that year a pogrom against Tamils in the south and east of Sri Lanka was instigated. Their possessions and business were looted, their houses burnt, many women were raped and probably 2,000 people were killed. This resulted in an exodus of around 100,000 Tamils from the south. It is not surprising that the civil war began in earnest in its bloody aftermath. It ended only with the complete victory of the Lankan state and the annihilation of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) twenty-six years later. During the conduct of the long civil war there were countless human rights violations by both sides, with the civilian population being caught in the middle. The conduct of the last phase of the war, known as Eelam War IV, came under particular scrutiny by the international community. It is this scrutiny that has angered that section of the Sinhala community that refuses to admit any fault on their own side.
(5. März 2017)
Mr. Sirisena himself addressing troops in the northern Jaffna peninsula on Sunday said he would not subject the Sri Lankan military personnel to any probe.
“I have clearly said that I am not prepared to serve charge sheets to our soldiers or to have foreign judges to try our security forces,” Mr. Sirisena said.
“It is my duty to protect the troops,” he said.
(17. Februar 2017)
Sri Lanka must employ international judges and prosecutors to ensure accountability during trials of those responsible for alleged war crimes against mostly Tamils, Human Rights Watch Australia’s director Elaine Pearson told SBS News.
Ms Pearson’s call, which echoes a recommendation in a 2015 UN Human Rights Council report of the OHCHR investigation of Sri Lanka, comes as Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesingh this week visited Canberra.
(16. September 2015)
Among the most serious crimes documented in the report are numerous unlawful killings, sexual and gender-based violence, enforced disappearances, torture, child recruitment, attacks on civilians, denial of humanitarian assistance, and violation of the rights of internally displaced persons in closed camps.
The report also documents “years of denials and cover-ups, failure to carry out prompt investigations, stalled investigations and reprisals against the family members of victims and others who have pushed for justice,” states the news release issued by the UN human rights office (OHCHR).
(16. September 2015)
In May 2009, the army recaptured the last area controlled by the LTTE, putting an end to a war that claimed the lives of up to 100,000 people, according to the UN. Nearly 40,000 of them are believed to have been killed in the last five months of the conflict.
Although the UN Human Rights Office (OHCHR) paper names no suspects, stating it was a „human rights investigation, not a criminal investigation,“ it does say that Tamil politicians, humanitarian workers, journalists and ordinary civilians were among the alleged victims of Sri Lankan security forces and associated paramilitaries.
He blamed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s government for weakening the intelligence system by focusing on prosecution of military officers over alleged war crimes during a decades-long civil war with Tamil separatists that ended in 2009.
Das Haus in der Küstenstadt Sainthamaruthu sollte im Zuge einer Anti-Terror-Razzia von Polizisten und Soldaten gestürmt werden, als es nach Aussagen eines Polizeisprechers vom Samstag zu den Detonationen kam.
Unter den Toten sind demnach sechs Kinder und drei Frauen.
Among those listed was a woman identified as Abdul Cader Fathima Khadhiya, accompanied by a photo of a woman in a headscarf purported to be the individual wanted for questioning.
But the photo in fact showed Amara Majeed, an American Muslim whose parents are Sri Lankan immigrants and who wrote an open letter to President Donald Trump in 2015 about his rhetoric on Muslims.
Sri Lanka’s former wartime defense chief, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, said on Friday he would run for president in elections this year and would stop the spread of Islamist extremism by rebuilding the intelligence service and surveilling citizens.
Sri Lanka’s prime minister has told the BBC he was „out of the loop“ when it came to intelligence warnings ahead of the deadly Easter Sunday bombings.
Ranil Wickremesinghe said that crucial information about any potential danger in the country was not passed to him.
Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, the country’s former defense secretary who helped end a brutal 26-year civil war in 2009, said in a phone interview with Bloomberg late Tuesday that voters are looking for a leader more like him in a presidential election that must be held this year.
Some of the confusion may have come down to spelling. Priyalal Disanayaka, the deputy inspector general of police, sent a memo to the directors of four Sri Lankan security agencies on April 11, identifying Mohammed Zaharan as the leader of „National Thawheek Jaman.“
The report attached to the memo, though, identified the group as „National Towheed Jamaar“ and said its leader was Zahran Hashmi.
There were so many variations of the group’s name thrown around that a separate group, the Sri Lanka Thowheed Jammath, held a news conference to clear its own name.
Nicht das Internet ist in Sri Lanka lahmgelegt, aber die Menschen in dem Land können weder Facebook und Instagram aufrufen noch über WhatsApp oder Snapchat kommunizieren.
Eine solche Maßnahme können Regierungen relativ schnell umsetzen. Sie bitten die Internetprovider, die IP-Adressen – in diesem Fall aus Sri Lanka -, die mit diesen Diensten verbunden sind, einfach zu blocken.
He said information on possible suicide attacks on churches, hotels and politicians were received from Indian intelligence on April 4th and a Security Council meeting was chaired by president Maithripala Sirisena on April 7th, but the information was not shared more widely.
“Somebody is controlling these top intelligence officials,” the minister said. “The Security Council is doing politics. We need to investigate into this.”
The information received from the State intelligence agencies was not passed on to him by relevant officials, said President Sirisena, who helms the Law and Order, and Defence ministries. “If they had done so, I would have taken immediate action.
“This is by all accounts an intelligence failure. Security services are responsible for penetrating local extremist groups, understanding their nexus to other overseas transnational groups and then collecting intelligence so they can pre-empt attacks and that didn’t happen in this case and as a result we have almost 300 dead and 500 wounded,” said Hoffman, a Fox News contributor, on “America’s Newsroom” on Monday.
„We have a good intelligence sharing system with India. It has been giving us the help we need. We also have got help from USA and UK. Our priority is to apprehend the terrorists. Until we do that, no one is safe,“ he said.
Mr Wickremesinghe said an investigation had been opened into why the intelligence never reached him and that the heads of defence would be replaced „within the next 24 hours“, with a complete restructuring of the police and security forces to follow „in the coming weeks“.
The office of New Zealand’s prime minister says she is aware of comments linking Sri Lanka’s Easter bombings to the mosque attacks in Christchurch, though it hasn’t “seen any intelligence upon which such an assessment might be based.”
The statement came Tuesday after Sri Lanka’s minister of defense, Ruwan Wijewardene, made the claim to Parliament, without offering evidence.
‚The preliminary investigations have revealed that what happened in Sri Lanka [on Sunday] was in retaliation for the attack against Muslims in Christchurch,‘ state minister of defence Ruwan Wijewardene told parliament today.
„Foreign intelligence has informed that Mohammed Cassim Mohamed Zaharan alias Zaharan Hashmi the leader of the National Thowheeth Jama’ath and his followers are planning suicide attacks in this country.“
Intelligence services in India and the US told Sri Lanka of the threat in early April, officials said. One memo compiled by Sri Lankan security officials was so specific that it even gave a list of suspects. In the runup to the holiest day in the Christian calendar, the warnings seemed to increase in frequency and urgency.
But none made any difference.
He said information passed to police included a warning from a foreign intelligence agency about possible attacks by the group, as well as names of members.
US media quote Sri Lankan officials as saying both Indian and US intelligence had warned the country about a threat in early April.
It was not clear on Monday whether Mr Sirisena had been made aware of the warnings.
Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, YouTube, Viber, Snapchat and Facebook Messenger were all shut down in Sri Lanka after Sunday’s co-ordinated attacks.
Wieso haben die Sicherheitsbehörden von Sri Lanka dann nichts unternommen, um dies zu verhindern, fragte gestern der Erzbischof von Colombo, Kardinal Malcolm Ranjith, bei einem Treffen von Vertretern verschiedener Religionen in seiner Residenz in Colombo. Da könne man sich doch nur an den Kopf fassen, wenn man sich klar macht, dass all diese Opfer verhindert hätten verhindert werden können, sagte er.
The emergency law, which gives police and the military extensive powers to detain and interrogate suspects without court orders, would go into effect at midnight local time, the president’s office said.
The US State Department warned: “Terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Sri Lanka. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, local government facilities, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, major sporting and cultural events, educational institutions, airports, and other public areas.”
Vor den Bombenanschlägen in Sri Lanka gab es Geheimdienst-Warnungen. So hätten die Taten vielleicht verhindert werden können, erklärt ZDF-Korrespondent Normen Odenthal.
International intelligence agencies warned of the attacks several times starting April 4, Senaratne said. On April 9, the defense ministry wrote to the police chief with intelligence that included the group’s name, he said. On April 11, police wrote to the heads of security of the judiciary and diplomatic security division, Senaratne said.
It was not immediately clear what action, if any, was taken in response.
National Thowheeth Jama’ath is a newly formed group in Sri Lanka and a strong proponent of the global jihadist movement. It is known for being a virulently anti-Buddhist and has been linked to the vandalisation of Buddhist statues. Four of its members were arrested in January.
The Soufan Center, a New York based group that monitors global security threats, said the Sri Lanka bombings bore all the ‚hallmarks‘ of ‚attacks by other Salafi-jihadist groups, particularly those where local groups receive foreign support.‘ (…)
It comes after Sri Lanka’s police chief issued a warning on April 11, saying a ‚foreign intelligence agency‘ had reported NTJ was planning attacks on churches and the Indian high commission.
Vor den Bombenangriffen am Ostersonntag haben Sri Lankas Geheimdienste offenbar Hinweise auf einen möglichen Anschlag vorgelegen. Das gab Premierministers Ranil Wickremesinghe in einer Fernsehansprache bekannt. Es müsse untersucht werden, warum keine entsprechenden Maßnahmen ergriffen worden seien.
„Ohne internationales Netzwerk hätten diese Angriffe keinen Erfolg haben können“, zitierte der „Guardian“ den Sprecher, der auch Gesundheitsminister des Landes ist.
Schon zwei Wochen vor den Anschlägen sei man schriftlich gewarnt worden – inklusive einer Liste mit Namen von Verdächtigen, so Senaratne.
The Sri Lankan government’s decision to block all social media sites in the wake of Sunday’s deadly attacks is emblematic of just how much US-based technology companies’ failure to rein in misinformation, extremism and incitement to violence has come to outweigh the claimed benefits of social media.
– Bombings of churches, luxury hotels and other sites could have been prevented
– Sri Lanka officials said that ‚intelligence officers were aware‘ of possible attack
– Documents dated for April 11 were shared on Twitter by a Sri Lanka minister
– He said his father had heard of the possibility of an attack as well and had warned him not to enter popular churches
– Defense Minister Ruwan Wijewardena said 13 suspects have been arrested.
– The death toll has risen overnight to 290 dead with more than 500 wounded
Three of the explosions this morning – as Christians attended Easter mass – were carried out by suicide bombers, according to a security official.
Sri Lanka’s minister of defence Ruwan Wijewardene said in a press conference: „We believe that all the culprits who have been involved in this unfortunate terrorist incident will be taken into custody as soon as possible. They have been identified, and they will be taken into custody as soon as possible.“
The country’s authorities convened an emergency meeting involving the heads of the army, air force and navy, according to Sri Lanka’s economic reforms minister, Harsha de Silva.
He said on Twitter that all emergency steps had been taken and that the group would issue a statement on the blasts.
Die Explosionen erschütterten die drei Kirchen, während die Gläubigen die Ostermesse feierten. Unter den Todesopfern waren nach Krankenhausangaben US-Bürger, Briten und Niederländer. Zur gleichen Zeit explodierten mehrere Bomben in drei Hotels in der Hauptstadt, dem Shangri-La, dem Cinnamon Grand und dem Kingsbury-Hotel. Die Hintergründe sind noch unklar.
Explosions went off simultaneously in three churches and three hotels; Sri Lankan official says security forces suspect ….
China und Indien sind die Hauptabnehmer des iranischen Öls und die Hauptadressaten der US-Forderungen. Der iranische Außenminister sagt, dass China besonders „ausschlaggebend“ für die Erhaltung des P5+1-Atomabkommens ist.
Police have used tear gas and water cannon to disperse a protest march conducted by university students near Parliament premises in Battaramulla a short while ago.
SAITM has become a highly controversial national issue with various segments questioning its standards and legality in terms of its operations as the only private medical college in the country.