ONE = Retd Air Vice Marshal Arun Kumaresan: “Easter Sunday bombing: Questions to Minister of Defence, Law and Order: Cost of manipulating higher defence management – National Security Council” in Daily FT, 24 April 2019, http://www.ft.lk/opinion/Easter-Sunday-bombing–Questions-to-Minister-of-Defence–Law-and-Order/14-676888
It was a sad and horrific day for all humans not only Sri Lankans nor Christians. Tentacles of religious fundamentalism and extremism have consumed many innocent lives on the day they were celebrating the resurrection of Christ. But as the reports indicate there had been a pre warning; not general but specific to violent acts targeting the Christians.
Mr. President: You have been preoccupied in your attempt to seek a second term; in such course you have increasingly taken all aspects of higher management defence and security into your hands. Before coming into this specific incident; there are questions that are related to your conduct as the Minister of Defence relating to higher defence management.
Mr. President: You are aware that the higher defence management of the nation is tasked with the National Security Council. It comprises, in addition to you, the Prime Minister, Ministers of the subject of Finance, Law and Order, and Foreign Affairs, Secretaries to the subject of Defence, Finance, Law and Order, and Foreign affairs, Service Chiefs and the IGP.
When required, Heads of Intelligence Services are called in for specific briefings to take stock of threats to national security. This is the way matters relating to higher defence management are conducted and courses of action formulated in any democratic nation. However, in contrast on your specific instructions, many a times such meetings have been conducted in the absence of the PM and other UNP Ministers from 2015. In addition, instructions have also been given to the participants who have been cleared by you to attend such meetings, to keep the time and venue secret, to shield it from the PM and other UNP Ministers.
Mr. President: Question 1 – In your preoccupation of your secret agenda to consolidate power, did you violate the ‘norm and form’ of the conduct of the higher defence management by intentionally omitting legitimate members in such high value discussions?
Mr. President: I wish to remind you, that after you intentionally violated the Constitution and appointed Mahinda Rajapaksa as Prime Minister, you took over the subject of Law and Order under Ministry of Defence. Even after the defeat of the political coup initiated by you, you continued to hold this portfolio under your purview. Hence, the entire security apparatus of the nation was under your total command and control. It is now a public knowledge that there was a pre-warning by the Intelligence Services that attacks were being planned by a religious fundamentalist group targeting Christians especially during Easter.
In this context, the statement by the Prime Minister has great relevance – Quote: “Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe had noted that although intelligence units had provided information on a possible attack, adequate precautions were not taken to prevent it. He has further added that he and the ministers were not informed of this as well.”
This substantiates that such serious matters affecting national security have again been kept away from the Prime Minister who is a legitimate member of the National Security Council and reinforces the earlier assertion of the conduct of illegitimate National Security Council meetings under your stewardship.
Mr. President, the above sounds very serious; you may have no sense and fear to trespass Constitutional boundaries; but now your acts disturbing higher defence management structures has resulted in loss of lives, bloodshed and mayhem. It only reflects your foolish arrogance, self-centred decision making and utter incompetency of governing the nation.
Mr. President: Question 2 – Aren’t you culpable of the offence of ‘manslaughter’ due to your intentional actions to marginalise the National Security Council and not acting on the credible intelligence that was in hand to prevent this catastrophe?
Mr. President, you have the right to visit Thirupathi in India. For a person “doing the right” to his fellow countrymen, the God will visit him or her. A person not doing the right to his people, will not and should not be tolerated by anyone leave alone the God. You by your inaction and selfish actions coupled with petty thinking have aided and abetted this “manslaughter”.
Note to readers: The main issue the President discusses at these illegitimate National Security Council meetings sans UNP members; was it to check what the UNP Government is up to?
TWO = Snr DIG H.M. G.B.. M. Kotakadeniya (Rtd) & Lt Col Anil Amarasekera (Rtd) — on behalf of The National Joint Committee
Statement of the National Joint Committee (NJC) on the massacre carried out by Islamic Terrorists
The National Joint Committee of Sri Lanka unequivocally condemn the brutal massacre carried out by a group of terrorists of misplaced Islamic faith, on the holy day of Easter at Several Leading churches and a number of popular hotels in Colombo. To the Sri Lankans who successfully eliminated the L.T.T.E terror ten years ago, the tragedy on the Easter Day was an unexpected tragedy which killed more than 350 and injured more than 500 persons including about 40 foreigners.
The N J C expresses its deepest sympathies to those affected families, At the conclusion of a 30 year war, Sri Lanka was getting back to normalcy when this tragedy struck the nation. We note with disgust that the government completely ignored the intelligence reports received by it from time to time. Had the government taken seriously of their paramount responsibility to safeguard the security of the nation, all these deaths would have been prevented. We have on numerous occasions pointed out the idiocy of remanding our Intelligence Officials without sufficient evidence being available against them up to date, no plaint had being filed against any of these officials. It is only through the intervention of courts that at least some of these officials have been granted bail pending trial.
We strongly condemn the government’s policy of taking punitive action against our valiant soldier’s at the behest of anti Sri Lankan elements hell-bent and punishing our security forces. We state with much regret the ill-advised decision of the government to co-sponsor the UNHRC resolution 30/1 against Sri Lanka through which we undertook to repeal the Prevention of Terrorism Act which assisted us immensely to end the 30 year war and to replace it with a fragile piece of legislation placing our national security in jeopardy.
The Counter Terrorism Law now before parliament includes clauses which would prevent “former citizens” now domiciled overseas and engaging in acts of terrorism in Sri Lanka from being prosecuted under this law without the permission of the country they have taken citizenship. Thus former terrorists
now forming part of the LTTE Tamil diaspora and other extremists who have given up Sri Lankan citizenship are out of reach of the proposed Anti-Terrorist Law.
It is now obvious that this Law has being prepared by the very elements responsible for the recent violence if not such exclusionary clauses could not have crept into our proposed Law. It is sad is that the government of Sri Lanka is a party to this despicable act.
Accordingly we urge the government,
(1) To forthwith proscribe permanently all extremist organization decimating Wahhabi extremist violence and Wahhabi extremist ideology including (a) The Sri Lanka Tawheed Jamaath (SLTJ) (b) National Tawaheed Jammaath (NTJ) (c) Nation Tawaheed Jammaath (d) Tamilnadu Tawaheed Jammaath (TNJJ)
(e) Tharnl Athar Athavia (f) ISIL By enacting necessary legislation similar to legislation enacted in 1978 to proscribe the LTTE
(2) To immediately close down all illegal Madarasa schools in Sri Lanka engaging in disseminating racial and religious hatred, and intolerance.
(3) To refrain from permitting any private university such as the Private Batticaloa Campus
(4) in Sri Lanka to teach Islamic theology except as a campus within the faculty of a state university which would function under the supervision of the government so as to prevent any extreme ideology with violent disposition being disseminated within the country.
(5) To release the Intelligence Officers taken into custody and terminate all persecutions initiated against our security forces.
(6) To ensure that all military camps that were in operation on 19th May 2009 be re-established if any of them had been closed down already.(7) Not to permit any foreign armed personnel, foreign armed services, secret agencies, to operate in Sri Lanka under the ostensible excuse of helping Sri Lanka to eradicate IS terrorism. The government should forthwith enact legislation which requires any security agency of any other state if they are operating as an attachment to any foreign embassy in Sri Lanka to register with the government of Sri lanka so that their operations could be monitored by the government.
(8) To ban any persons in any public place wearing any dress or mask in a manner that the identity of such a person cannot be identified including the Niquab, Burkah, or other similar dress
(9) Refrain from recognizing or allowing any refugee who is not a citizen of Sri Lanka, to remain in Sri lanka and immediately repatriate all those refugees who have been permitted to remain in Sri Lanka.
In conclusion we wish to place on record our absolute disgust the manner in which the TNA and other racist political parties conduct of themselves with regard to matters affecting our national security. The TNA including the former Opposition Leader Mr R. Sampanthan was constantly making the demand both locally and overseas to remove the military from the Northern & Eastern Provinces. They were ably assisted by some of the Muslim Politicians and foreign funded NGO’s. The former High Commissioner of the UNHRC was persistent in making the demand to demilitarise our country through his reports and statement.
The conduct of the former foreign minister Mr Mangala Samaraweera is equally putrid and treacherous.
We urge this so called International Community to at least now to allow us to live in peace without interfering with the internal affairs of Sri Lanka.
Fmr. Snr DIG H.M. G.B.. M. Kotakadeniya (Rtd) & Lt Col Anil Amarasekera