10 June, 2023


Political Aftershocks Of The Easter Sunday Terrorist Attack

By Mahinda Rajapaksa

Mahinda Rajapaksa

The terrorist attack that took place on the 21st of April is a watershed in the history of this country. Today, a fear of terrorists who murder those who do not subscribe to their religious ideology, has spread throughout the country. Economic activities have been adversely affected. As was the case during the war, parents are once again guarding schools. Today, religious observances have to be performed under tight security – a situation that we did not experience even during the war. We are unable to celebrate Vesak and Poson as we used to. Devotees are searched before being allowed to enter places of worship.

There is now mutual mistrust between the Muslim community and the followers of other religions. This mistrust is now developing in a dangerous direction due to the allegation that a Muslim medical specialist attached to the Kurunegala hospital had due to extremist religious ideology, rendered women belonging to other religions infertile. At a time like this, the leaders of the country and of the Muslim community, should act in a very responsible and circumspect manner.

Two or three weeks after the bomb attacks, we saw organised groups of people attacking Muslim owned business establishements in certain areas obviously with a view to igniting a countrywide riot. But those incidents ceased almost as quickly as they started due to resolute opposition from the general public. There was strong opposition to these acts of violence in the social media as well. We saw similar incidents taking place around 2014 in the run up to the 2015 presidential election. On the 9th January 2019, we found that both the perpetrators and victims of those incidents, were with the common candidate. This time too they seem to have been aiming at a similar stunt, but their attempt failed.

All of us should understand that everything that we see happenning now, is directly connected to the presidentail election that is due to be held in a few months. The present government is seeking to retain for the next presidential election as well, the Muslim vote base that they organised around themselves using various stratagems before 2015. Opposition MPs tabled a no-confidence motion against one Cabinet minister on the grounds that he had connections with the terrorists responsible for the Easter Sunday attacks. No confidence motions are an integral part of the parliamentary tradition and a right exercised by the parliamentary opposition.

When a no confidence motion is tabled in Parliament, it can either be debated and a vote taken, or the Minister concerned can resign and resume his portfolio if he is cleared of the charges. That is a tradition that applies to all members of Parliament regardless of their ethnicity or religion. In years past, no-confidence motions had been tabled against Muslim Speakers like M.A.Barkeer Markar and M.H.Mohamed but at that time, nobody looked at them in religious or ethnic terms. 

This time however, when a no confidence motion was tabled against one Muslim Minister, all All Muslim ministers in the government resigned. This seems to be ploy on the part of the UNP government to organise and line up all Muslim politicians on one side and to obtain the Muslim vote at the forthcoming presidential elections.   

In any case, the en mase resignations have resulted in the opposition’s no-confidence motion being rendered void. Since public attention has been distracted by the mass resignations, the government has managed to sweep many other issues under the carpet. The Central bank bond scam has been forgotten. The debt crisis has been forgotten. Some of those injured in the Easter Sunday attacks are still in hospital but they too have been forgotten. There is now no talk about extremists. The searches have stopped. The discovery of weapons has ceased. There is no talk of the steps being taken with regard to the terrorist suspects arrested. Thus, the government has killed about a hundred birds with one stone.  

The UNP is making good use of the Muslim community for their political purposes. The UNP needs the votes of the moderates as well as the extremists within the Muslim community. They don’t care where their votes come from. The Muslim leaders for their part, want a government they can manipulate at will. But this confluence of interests will not solve the problem that the ordinary Muslims of this country face today. The ordinary people of this country want protection from extremists terorists. The ordinary Muslim folk in this country want to weed out the terrorists from their midst and to resume their normal lives. 

Today, a brutal terrorism that targets the followers of other religions has emerged from within the Muslim community. Buddhists, Hindus and Christians are joining hands in a common endeavour against that terrorism. Moderate Muslims should not be isolated from this unity of purpose that is being forged. Muslim religious leaders and intellectuals have admitted that as a result of the extremist ideologies that came into this country from outside, the Sri Lankan Muslim community had gradually isolated themselves from the rest of Sri Lankan society.

Due to the emergence of exclusively Muslim political parties from the 1980s onwards, Muslims isolated themselves in the political sphere as well. The en masse resignation of Muslim Ministers marks a high point in this process. When the former ministers who resigned came to explain matters to me in my capacity as the Leader of the Opposition, I raised this issue with them.

My friend Mr M.H.M.Ashroff who was the first to form an exclusively Muslim political party, later realised his mistake and towards the end he formed a political party that was open to all communities called the National Unity Alliance. But after his death, this trend towards integration stopped and the isolationist trend gained momentum.   

Due to the fact that Muslim political leaders are completely dependent on the Muslim vote, they need the votes of the extremists within their community as well. Muslim extremism spread throughout this country because the Muslim leaders were unable to oppose it. There is the oft heard charge that the Muslim leaders speak of reconcilation in Sinhala but spread the message of communalism in Tamil. Islamic extremism has gained traction in this country due to that kind of politics.

The spread of extremist ideologies among the Muslim population in this country did not take place all of a sudden. It took place over a number of years, in the midst of heated debates, threats, exchange of fisticuffs, the burning of mosques, the burning of houses and even murder. Even in the midst of all that, Muslim political leaders provided patronage to the extremists and allowed them to flourish. After the Easter Sunday bombings, Muslim leaders said that they never thought something as serious as this would happen. 

Be that as it may, we now have to find a solution for what has happened. The people of this country will never tolerate terrorism. This extremist terrorism will have to be destroyed by whatever means necessary. Due to the JVP’s terrorism, Sinhala persons were arrested, Sinhala homes and temples were searched. Due to LTTE terrorism Tamil persons were arrested, Tamil homes and kovils were searched. If a terrorism that has emerged from within the Muslim community is to be crushed, Muslim individuals will have to be arrested, Muslim homes and mosques will have to be searched. Anyone who says that terrorism can be crushed without such measures, is not being truthful. 

Terrorism based on religion may be a new thing to us, but it’s a very familiar menace in all Muslim majority countries. The vast majority of Muslims in the world are moderates. In all the Muslim majority countries from Indonesia and Malaysia through Oman, Dubai and up to Morocco, the vast majority of Muslims live ordinary lives like we do. Adherents of other religious live in large numbers in most Muslim majority countries and they are secure to the extent that religious extremism has been suppressed in the country concerned. 

As in the case of Sri Lanka, religious extremism is the biggest enemy of the worldwide Muslim community. This is the main tool used by imperialists to destroy Muslim countries. Imperialist powers have already destroyed Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libiya and Yemen by promoting religious extremism in those countries. The extremist terrorism that has now come into this country will not do the local Muslim community any good. I hope the danger of isolating local Muslims from other communities in this country would have dawned on our Muslim leaders at least at this late stage. 

All other communities must get together and protect the moderate Muslims at this juncture. Every Muslim for his part should use his own reason and eschew narrow religion based politics. That change should come from within the Muslim community. When the people of different communities in this country are uniting against terrorism, we expect the moderate Sri Lankan Muslim community to join them, following the example set by the vast majority of the global Muslim community. I wish to emphatically state before the people of Sri Lanka that terrorism will not be allowed to exist in this country under a government led by me. 

Thank you.

May the blessings of the Triple Gem be upon you, God bless you.

*Translation of a speech made by the Leader of the Opposition Hon. Mahinda Rajapaksa on Tuesday, 11 June 2019 at his official residence on Wijerama Mawatha Colombo

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Latest comments

  • 11

    This shows how ignorant you are. Terrorism is a menace in ALL Muslim Majority countries.Is it more than what we have seen in Lanka ???Is Lanka a Muslim majority country????. What about Malaysia ??? Most of the terrorism you mentioned in those countries are of ISIS origin. That goes to show ISIS dosent care who they attack and hence they picked your shit hole. You also talked about politicians acting responsible and circumspect. If that was the case when most of the trouble, riots, rumors, hatred originated from your own constituency, you as a responsible person should have immediately rushed there , meet people , arrange inter religious meetings ,get them to discuss, take preventive measures with help of people who voted for you, gone to the teaching hospital and met the staff and so called affected patients – — etc —etc. Not to sit where you are , and give these kind of statements. You are now unhappy because the Muslim ministers have taken them selves out of your planned equation and now you are left with none to screw.

    • 8

      MR: It is time for the younger generation to take over and lead this country and time for you and your buddy bondscam Ranil to pack up and go home! Those over the age of 60 should be BANNED from contesting elections.

      Unlike Bondscam Ranil who constantly talks about fighting ISIS even as he talks like IS is his best friend, because Ranil likes to pretend to be protector of minorities , MR talks of imperialism but never mentions IS. MR also does not mention the Sinhala Buddhist Waahbies who are as bad as the Muslim Wahabis.
      Though MR know who was behind the Ester attack and that USA was behind them in order sign SOFA and MCC Compact and turn Lanka into a US colony and military base, while keeping US puppet Bondscam Ranil and his butterfly network in power to do the dirty work of the US empire, MR blames clown Sira for the disaster.
      However, US citizen Gota, MR and Bond Ranil are all in different ways partners in the crime and dancing to American tunes and in the bi-partisan corruption racket called national reconciliation brokered by Trumpland. They must GET OUT!

      • 0

        Yes, time for younger generation to lead.
        No one over 60 years should be allowed to contest next elections, the current generation of politicians are so corrupt and ruined the country.

        Where are the NGO ladies who were doing saree protests at Galle Face and wearing black masks to save Bondscam Ranil during Sillysen’s coupe with Ma Ra?.
        They should have a real civil society campaign to elect younger generation of politicians, but seems they were paid off by $$$ and Euros to keep US puppet Ranil in power!

    • 7

      What else can be expected from a man who built a career on lying & deception! For example, remember how he made trips to Geneva to complain about HR violations & then to become the worst HR violator ever in SL once became the Prez! However, he has allowed the corruption run so wild under his rule that there are plenty of corruption dependent politicians & media owners wanting to bring him back to power so desperately.I beg the intellectual community of SL to get together & formulate a strategy now to save the voters from this corrupt media before it is too late!

  • 7

    Did Mahindapala or Rajeewa write this for you????? Looks very flimsy for a guy who is always on
    lookout, for political bouncers.

    • 3

      Dear Mahinda, if at all anyone who is shocked by Easter Sunday bombing it it is you, your brothers and your cohort Sirisena. You planned the attack with Sirisena agreeing, and you through your agents told those terrorists to go ahead and bomb churches and tourist hotels and not to cause any harm to Buddhists or their places of worship. This is the reason why these Muslim terrorists who are angry with Buddhists bombed churches killing Tamils and Sinhala Catholics. All of you did not mind to sacrifice the lives of innocent Tamils and Sinhala Catholics for your personal agenda to topple the government and usurp power. You expected Catholics to retaliate and in the retaliation get your Buddhist goon squad to kill Muslims and burn their property and put the blame on Catholics for taking revenge on Muslims. Unfortunately for you nothing such happened and Tamils and Catholics who were affected showed restraint gaining the praise of fair minded people, and there was no expected mayhem and chaos for you to move in to take over. Furthermore evidence is coming out from fearless individuals about how you nurtured and controlled terror groups and prevented action being taken against them. This is why you are trying your best to stop the inquiry by parliamentary select committee putting up your agents to oppose it as you have no guts to do it yourself. You refused to sign the no confidence motion against Bathurdeen because you had received money from him and he has done dirty jobs for you to suppress Tamils. Writing is on the wall now about your culpability of the crime with the connivance of Sirisena. Since you are a big actor, you are putting up a Ves Muhuna to cover up your mental state.

  • 7

    we expect the moderate Sri Lankan Muslim community to join them. Opportunities don’t happen, you create them. Already joined from 2014 and created the opportunity to get rid off the terrorist.

    Was there no prior information from the muslim community, Visibly there was conflict within the muslim community why was exploring/discoveries to fact find where we might go next. The discoveries was the mawanella case the participate gave vital information m the people who cased the damaged and man involving networks of relations and information which may be useful to or countering terrorist before 4/21

  • 9

    Buddy you who made good use of Muslim politicians where they kept looking the other way while you and your brother harassed the community. If Muslims need the vote of extremist , then why do you need Ganasara ??? Dude you fooled us once, with your postwar speech “how Lanka belongs to all Lankans”, shame on you. You fool us twice it is shame on us. Tell us one single act of yours, post Easter to help in rebuilding relationships ????? You with MS as been busy looking to obstruct PSC from revealing the truth. If you are so interested in nation building why do you have to obstruct the hearings. Remember your infamous “lessons learned ” report which was forgotten even before it got released. You expected the same with MS appointed fake commission to satisfy naive Lankans. Find some suitable audience in Kurunegala to tell your bedtime stories. This site is for adults and not for children.

  • 8

    All the accusations you make here , are acts you had been involved in past. It is within your nature , to blame some one else. In children it is known as oppositional defiance. In adults it is known as Anti Social Personality disorder. Readers take a look at Trump when he blames others, to understand this pathology.

  • 1

    The leader of Opposition speech give the gravity current situation. He represented largest political Party and social force of alliance. MR is symbolized of democratic an altativinity to orthodox politics of UNP. UNP under the Wickramasinghe has uproot the Party inner democracy, gradually it has eroded.
    Then His succession of that UNP 1994 Wickramasinghe hs turn to lifetime chairmen of pro- Western-oriented party. During that RW lost 29 time of various election until 2015 Jan 8th. Regime of change came into being by 15/18 that the Western interest– installed MS as President of DSR of Sri Lanka.
    Since 15/1/8 polices of UNP has been hijacked by TNA, JVP and Muslim Congress and other extremist of Muslim terrorist . Undelivered of that range of policies by RW has omitted National interest of country 15/1/8.
    Only ( Ranil W…) remember not that promises of in his words ” good governance and rule of law” by that unconditional offer by side of “politics-SLFP” by federalism of CBK and MS .
    Nevertheless three ORDIAN of Terrorism been apply by Island after 1948@
    1 April 5th 1971 of south extremist of adventurist by JVP-Terrorist attack to 51 police station by Gun rule politics.
    Then 1988/89/90 of JVP same leader of Attnayake (Rohan) attack many points of security forces ,
    return to that UNP regime of R.Pramadas and Ranil Wicks also of same Cabinet killed 70,000 to 80,000 youth of islandwide. JVP- terrorism of extremism has played key role jeopardized democracy by rebel terror outfit.
    2 LTTE -terrorism was on proxies war by TNA,TULF and FP for myth of separatist State fro Tamil speaking people in Island and World achieve by rule of gun of Terrorism. They hijack democracy of People & suspended right to vote. By and large Tamils speaking race forget their Homeland is closed after cross 22 miles from that Indin Tamil Nadu .

  • 0

    Ranil is in dirty mud up to the Nose. Mahinda Rajapske is still angry with Maithripala for eating his hoppers and giving MR BAD STARs at that time. Mahinda Rajapakse, all these four and half years, talked about him and now wants to get rid of Maithripala. MR is Gotabhaya Rajapaske’s Manager. Maithripala says the problem is they want two places . Anyway, Mahinda Rajapaske knew that rishad Bathiuddin was playing a different game. MR allowed even illegal Gazette notifications to be published. Who allowed turkish terrorists to be settled in Wilpatthu. Is it for building a BLock vote like thing Against turkey or for what. Foreign powers can buy any one for money and once black mailed, they can use that direction or simply give him more money. Rajapakses are caught in every way. That is another story. Every politician in the parliament knew that Zaharan was going to explode and the Date. But, they did not know the exact timing and which particular church or temple that would be attacked. Why should they believe that churches would be attacked when muslims and buddhists are at each other because Ven. ghansara talked about it. He is still scared because he won the war and a MP wants a bullet proof car.
    all the politicians are taking the Advantage now. Yet, they allowed everything to happen and My guess is even they allowed Ven. ghansara to open his mouth and go to Jail. I think al Bagdadi wanted ven. Ghansara to keep the mouth shut.
    It is the Catholic Cardinal and buddhist bhikkus who keep the country peaceful and not politicians.

  • 1

    Mahinda Rajapkse is very good taking credit for what others did. the LTTE war he enjoyed on his own and all by himself. Now, he wants some credit even with Muslims. All prominent politicians because of Hisbullahs and Bathiuddin’s money helped Wahhabism. It looks just like the bond scam, many politicians in the parliament profited from Wahhabism. Saudi Arabia, Western agent for distributing ISIS all over the world, is distributing money and compensate that by building mosques. Everybody says, another Rajapakse who made Rishad Bathiuddin. a decent govt would nip all those in the bud. But, Sri lanka is a different country. Now, PSC is working only for foreign needs to see what and how it went wrong. If Malinda Rajapakse was there, he would be accused for everything happened. IT is simply 225, accuse each other profit and foll the voter. 225 don’t give a democratic opportunity to vote. Instead vote these among the lot. So, the parliament is always is full of one gang of need to be convicts. or the other.
    Poor Ethiopia is developing at 8.5% rate. Sri lanka’s development began settling in 2012. No one knew what to do. so, sold even the Insurance corporation. Pakistani Arrested their previous govt PM for Money Laundering charges. In Sri lanka, they changed the Exchange control legislation and now not only Pent house RAVI many are automatically acquitted. I think some wrote in the book LEBBE ge MAspihiye liyawi etha SATH karuna saha Maithri. All 225 are Lebbes.

  • 1

    Muslim resignations are all games. Politicians got even Mahanayake theros to make press releases on that when it is completely political. Politicians are all for themselves and they do not care about the country. They just back stab others, and always talk about how wrong the others are not what they did. See Kenya with lot of problems it now a decent country. they do not have a history like Sri lanka. Sri lanka’s problem a bunch or chosen people since 1948 destroying the country. Rajapskes particularly cannot do that, because some of the Rajapakses are wealth by any means, the other is, Rajapakses have lot of investment Assets in the west. So, in order to save those, they have to oblige to the west.If not on various charges they may be air lifted to diego Garcia or who knows.

  • 3

    Hakeem always twists stories. So, fearing that Muslim Ministers would tell tales about their meeting outside, instead of releasing a joint statement to press, Old King wanted to release a statement written by another one(GLP?) on his meeting with resigned Muslim ministers. That is what this is. Smart Nee!
    GLP has no sense of history. His speech writing is saying Muslims Leaders speaking unity in Sinhala and division in Tamil. He has worded this so Old King can bring out Hezbollah recent speech that if Hezbollah is not reappointed, OIC will bring economic sanctions. This is a big blow to the Sinhala Buddhist intellectuals, including Chitanta Old Royals, who promoted Muslim leaders as patriotic peace makers. Hakeem went and spoke in English at Geneva that Sinhala leaders, unlike Tamils, are very humanistic, who are LTTEyers. This is how the birds of a feather flock together. This is why the flag-ship Muslim-Sinhala Aanduwa was flourishing successful for 70 years.

    But when Hakeem went to meet ex Ambassador Patricia Butanes to substantiate why SLFP was firing CJ Shiranee, she asked why Hakeem, as the Justice Minister, didn’t resign. Media reported that he explained it as SLFP leaders were trying to frame cases (Kumari Cooray) against him, so he cannot go against them. Hakeem speaks one in public, another one in private.

    There is a speech of Hakeem in which he repeatedly swearing in Tamil that Hezbollah ever said anything is only a lie. Now why did Hakeem resigned to protect him, without Hezbollah facing legal proceeding?
    Hakeem said Tamils are begging in the West showing their beggar wound. He said that is Tamils political prostitution. Why any of these Muslims didn’t did not oppose Hezbollah showing off beautifully skin peeled off thing to OIC and begging? Is that because as Ashar claimed in Parliament that they all have already circumcised?

  • 2

    As matter of fact, no Minister resigned with Hezbollah to protect him now has accepted as wrong or condemning Hezbollah for saying that OIC will be enforcing economic sanctions (Of cause they said it, but that is different).
    Sinhala Media fears to pick up on Hezbollah’s OIC comment. So they say it is illegal to say “Muslims are minority in Lankawe only, but they are majority in the world”. Is there any illegality in those words or is it pretty good factual & statistical statement? Naive Colombo Media fears to OIC, so trying to twist that saying as “Muslims are majority in the world” is racist statement.
    The Chitanta governments who launched Muslim spies on Tamils and sent Hakeem, Rishard with Sinhala supporting actresses to Geneva to witness against Tamils are now blaming Ranil for using Muslims for his selfish purpose. Chitanta government used Muslim spies because of they speak Tamil is now saying, Muslim are spreading racism in Tamil, but preaching unity Sinhala. Then, is it still GLP assumption that Muslims spies really translate honestly from Tamil to Sinhala? Muslim leaders always spoke ultimate racism and this is why Sinhala racists wanted to keep Muslim promoted over Tamils. This is reason the 1951’s MMDA is still the Muslims personal law -divide them all to rubbles!. GLP didn’t know this so far? Comedy Thamai! Hezbollah always spoke violence against Tamils. He last year during LG election said that he will make Tamils blood river flow if their problem was settled merging North and East.

    This is what even the educated Ranil Mahata lawyer Modaya is arguing. But, whatever the Ranil’s talk on Hezbollah’s statement, it appears it is with his blessing Muslim Ministers Union went on strike. Ranil put acting ministers for the vacated ministries. Now lawyers are saying that there is no constitutional provision to appoint acting minister for vacancy, but acting minister is only for the filled position. Where Ranil is, now, who recommended acting minsters for, vacated positions?

  • 6

    The country and people do not need both Mahinda Family or Ranil Family or Bandaranaiyake family or DS Senanayake Family. Theey altogether destroyed this country in the name of Buddhism. We need some one who loves this land and people. Politics and religions should be cleaned. The rule of law should be the fundamental. Religious leadership should not take any part in politics other than social welfare of the people. Politicians should not speak about protecting the religions. God is superior power and God do not need politicians to protect Lord Buddha or Lord Siva, or Lord Allah or Lord Christ.

  • 1

    Mahinda Rajapakse is very correct in stating, ” The terrorist attack that took place on the 21st of April is a watershed in the history of this country”.
    Definition of watershed
    1 : a crucial dividing point, line, or factor : TURNING POINT
    Many TURNING POINTS were planned by the perpetrators of this atrocity. What they did not expect was the TURNING POINT where in the aftermath, it is becoming evident that the atrocity was a false flag carefully planned out by the Powers-that-want-to-be utilizing religious terrorism to further their agenda(s).
    Points to Ponder about WHO, WHY, WHEN and HOW.
    Reports indicate that this extreme religious group have been in the radar and under scrutiny.
    They have been sponsored financially with public money – in the name of intelligence gathering.
    It belies logic to assume that the leader of the group blew himself up – which would mean that Zahran is still alive OR else that he was just a stooge for the Powers-that-want-to-be.
    The choice of targets :
    Churches – to create religious dis-harmony
    Tourist Hotels : to destabilize the economy
    Both of which have been established successfully.
    Have the powers-that-want-to-be been successful?
    We now get reports that the President in scuttling the Presidential commission!
    Other Politico’s are agreeing that the commission should be scuttled in the name of Intelligence risk!
    Should the intelligence that was available been acted upon this atrocity should never have happened.

  • 3

    Mahinda Rajapaksa’s {“Political Aftershocks Of The Easter Sunday Terrorist Attack”}
    The aftershocks are the result of anti-Muslim FRACKING by unscrupulous thick politicians.
    SLPP will use this at elections.
    PS: What is FRACKING? Read below
    Fracking is a recent commercial hydraulic fracturing process of extracting oil or natural gas by injecting a mixture of water, sand or gravel, and certain chemicals under high pressure into well holes in dense rock to create fractures that the sand or gravel holds open, allowing the oil or gas to escape.
    Considered safe but recently scientists are warning that fracking may unleash earthquakes and tsunamis.

  • 2

    mahinda,see what has happened after you started the ball rolling with the aluthgama riots.

  • 0

    The philosopher Machiavelli said, “The first method for estimating the intelligence of a ruler is to look at the men he has around him.” So, what can we say about the men surrounding Sirisena? Either they were involved in bond scams (RW), or taking bribes (Hizbullah & Bathiudeen), or incapable of maintaining domestic security (PJ). It means the head honcho (Maithree) is not very bright himself. The people will make their voice heard at the next election.
    It is not true that “In all the Muslim majority countries from Indonesia and Malaysia through Oman, Dubai and up to Morocco, the vast majority of Muslims live ordinary lives like we do.” Most Muslims in these places do not live in a secular democracy. The idea of a secular democracy (which emanated in ancient Greece) is at odds with Islam, which leans towards some variation of Sharia Law. What we have here is a “clash of civilizations.” This clash makes Islamic terrorism more dangerous than all other forms of terrorism. But as MR says, it is up to individual Muslims to choose their own side. And on a larger scale, there needs to be internal change from the Muslim community as a whole, which rejects the more extreme elements of Shariah.

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