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International News

May 11, 2019

Sri Lanka: Navy opens fire at two cars at Wattala for failing to follow orders

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In Sri Lanka, one person was killed and another was injured when security personnel fired at two cars that failed to stop at a security checkpoint near Wattala, around 20 km from Colombo.

Navy spokesman said the shooting took place this morning when the Navy personnel attempted to check a vehicle and the driver of the vehicle tried to run away. 

The driver of the car was wounded in the shooting and has died upon admission to the hospital. About an hour later, another car was fired at the same barricade, when it tried to flee. The driver of the car was injured in the shooting.

Preliminary investigations have revealed that both drivers were heavily drunk. Security forces are involved in search operations all over the country after Easter Sunday attacks which killed 258 people including 45 foreigners.

In a related development, police requested those in possession of explosives without valid permits to inform the nearest police station within the next three days. The police had earlier given similar ultimatum for arms and ammunition.
Meanwhile, Srilankan army chief Lt General Mahesh Senanayake has assured that security situation in the country is back to normal and 85 percent of suspects linked to Easter Sunday attacks, are under arrest. 

Talking to our Prasar Bharti correspondent in Colombo, the army chief said that the security operations carried out by armed forces have been successful and he believed the emergency provisions will be lifted within a month.

General Senanayake said that nobody in the armed forces were informed of intelligence inputs about probable attacks on Easter Sunday and called for better coordination among security and intelligence setup. 

The army chief also sought cooperation of India and friendly nations in intelligence sharing and tackling radicalism in the region. 

He said five Srilankans had travelled abroad to join fight with Islamic State in the past and some of IS fighters from Maldives may have links to the attacks.

The army chief also revealed that main mastermind of attacks, Zahran Hashim is believed to have travelled to India and they are looking onto other details. He said one of the suicide bombers had travelled to Syria in the past.

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