Sri Lankan Police Arrest ISIS Suspects Amid Ongoing Investigations

Sri Lankan police have arrested two more suspects allegedly linked to ISIS from the northwestern region. This follows the arrests of four Sri Lankans in India. Investigations are underway, and a cash reward has been announced for credible information. Cooperation between Sri Lanka and India is ongoing to tackle the threat.

PTI | Colombo | Updated: 29-05-2024 16:21 IST | Created: 29-05-2024 16:21 IST
Sri Lankan Police Arrest ISIS Suspects Amid Ongoing Investigations
AI Generated Representative Image
  • Country:
  • Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan police have arrested two more suspects allegedly linked to the Islamic State (ISIS) from the country's northwestern region, officials said on Wednesday.

The development comes days after the Gujarat Anti-Terrorist Squad arrested four Sri Lankans with links to ISIS at the airport in Ahmedabad. The four men had taken an Indigo flight out of Colombo to Chennai on May 19.

Sri Lankan security forces suspect that a 46-year-old man - identified as Osmand Gerrard - acted as their handler and facilitated their movement from Lanka to India.

Sri Lanka Police recently announced a cash award of Rs. 2 million for any credible information on the whereabouts of the wanted suspect.

The CID has arrested two people in Bangadeniya, Chilaw for their alleged links with ISIS members, officials said.

Investigations conducted so far have not confirmed that the two are ISIS members, they added.

Meanwhile, the Colombo magistrate's court on Wednesday granted bail to a university lecturer who had stated to the media that four individuals who had been arrested in India were part of a list in the presidential commission report which said that they must be put through a programme of de-radicalisation. He was arrested on Tuesday to record a statement to verify his claim, the police said. Despite his television statement, he denied any knowledge of such a thing when quizzed by the police, the police said.

The exchange of information between Sri Lanka and India has commenced concerning the Sri Lankans arrested in India. This collaborative effort involves both the Sri Lanka Army Intelligence Division and the Police Terrorist Investigations Division, the local media said on Tuesday.

Among the arrested individuals, Mohammed Nusrat is a businessman involved in importing telecommunication devices and electrical equipment from countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, and Dubai, the news portal said.

Nusrat operated within Colombo, where he sold these imported goods.

Mohammad Nafran, 27, who was also arrested, has been identified as the son of the first wife of Niyas Naufer aka 'Potta Naufer' the notorious underworld criminal who was sentenced to death for the killing of High Court Judge Sarath Ambepitiya.

The other two Sri Lankans are 35-year-old Mohammad Faris from Maligawatte, Colombo and 43-year-old Mohammad Rashdeen from Colombo 13.

Mohammad Faris had worked as a 'Nattami' or cart puller in Pettah, and was arrested by the Colombo Crimes Division on March 11, 2023, and November 1 of the same year.

On May 21, his close associate Hameed Amir was arrested by the Terrorist Investigations Division. Mohammad Faris left for Chennai, India on May 19.

The other suspect is Mohammad Rashdeen, a three-wheeler driver. Security forces suspect that he is linked to trafficking crystal meth or ICE.

Last week, the Sri Lankan authorities launched a high-powered operation to investigate the four Sri Lankans arrested in Gujarat.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Give Feedback