Easter Sunday’s bombing in Sri Lanka sent shockwaves throughout the world as many celebrated the religious holiday. Information about the attack has slowly begun to trickle out, and videos of the alleged bombers walking towards their blast targets have been released. On Tuesday, ISIS released a video claiming they were the ones that attacked in order “to avenge the Christchurch massacre.”
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Sri Lanka’s defense minister Ruwan Wijewardene is still conducting an investigation into the terrorist bombing, but we now know that the attack was carried out by nine bombers who sympathize with ISIS.
The attack, which left nearly 300 people dead, was in response to Brenton Tarrant, a white supremacist who allegedly slaughtered 50 people at two mosques as he live-streamed the horrific event to Facebook, Wijewardene surmised.
According to the Daily Mail, two groups, The National Thowheed Jamaath and Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen India, carried out the attack. There were numerous warnings of the attack prior but these seemingly fell on deaf ears.
The first warning came two weeks before the attack with viable intelligence that an attack could take place on the holiday. The warnings were repeated again two days before the attack, The New York Times reported.
A man in India was arrested and interrogated as he was believed to be a member of ISIS, CNN reported. He revealed that a suicide bombing plot that would take place Easter Sunday and gave the name Zahran Hashim. Hashim was seen in the video ISIS released Tuesday when they claimed responsibility, and he is suspected of being the mastermind behind the vicious unprovoked attack.
Hashim reportedly brought the two aforementioned terrorist groups together to pull off the attack. The groups were relatively untrained and would have had little insight into how to pull off an attack of this magnitude.
CCTV footage captured two of the bombers as they entered an elevator as they headed to the spot where they would kill themselves and hundreds of others. “What we have seen from the CCTV footage is that all the suicide bombers were carrying very heavy backpacks. These appear to be crude devices made locally,” a source told media outlets in Sri Lanka.
Investigators are still piecing together what happened, but what is clear, is that ISIS is responsible for the attack.