In the latest news, the Islamic State claimed full responsibility for the string of fierce blasts at Churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday which led to the mass killing of 321 people leaving 500 others badly injured.
A statement that was released through its propaganda wing named the Amaq agency, ISIS said the blasts were the work of “fighters of the Islamic State”, but did not attach any proof to justify its claim.
The group also said that it was targeting citizens of nations bombing its territories including Christians.
“A security source told Amaq agency the perpetrators of the attack targeting the citizens of [US-led] coalition countries and Christians in Sri Lanka were soldiers of the Islamic State,” it added.
US intelligence sources added that the attacks carried some of the authentication marks of the Islamic State militant group.
The island nation’s junior minister for defence identified as Ruwan Wijewardene, had previously in the day notified the country’s parliament that two local Islamist outfits namely the National Thawheed Jama’ut and Jammiyathul Millathu Ibrahim were held responsible for the blasts early on Sunday.
They were executed by at least 7 suicide bombers, on three churches and four hotels.
The minister also said the preliminary investigation has disclosed that the brutal attacks were in response to the New Zealand mosque attack of March 15, but did not clearly elaborate on why authorities believed there was a connection to the killing of 50 people at two mosques in Christchurch.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe also told parliament investigators were finding out foreign links, a day after investigative agencies said that an “international network” may have possibly assisted the local outfits.
At least 40 suspects, including the van driver allegedly used by the suicide bombers, have been detained in link with the deadly attacks so far.