Former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe in an interview with WION TV said the Presidential Commission probing Easter Sunday attacks had to acknowledge that he was not informed and that there was no finding against any of the ministers from the United National Party (UNP).
“The full report is not out yet. But, the commission had to acknowledge that I was not informed. There is no finding against any of the ministers from the United National Party (UNP). So, We have really not been in it. We have been outside,” he said.
Mr. Wickremesinghe refused the accusations made by the Commission for showing a lax attitude to Islamic extremism.
When asked whether he agreed to the commission accusing him of having shown a lax approach to Islamic extremism, he said
“No, after the Paris bombing, I got the police to start a religious extremism unit which followed all the extremism. There was a separate group investigating these matters. Secondly, I was drafting a new counter-terrorism law. We got aid from the UK. Thirdly, whenever the security forces or the police brought up these matters, I said, take action, track down hard but first consult Attorney General or get legal advice. Otherwise, you will get caught up in a series of cases instead of doing investigations. If you go by the criteria of political responsibility or the criteria of criminal responsibility, there is no such thing as called lax attitude. How do you judge an attitude? Whether you are lax or not. I do not know. I certainly have not tolerated extremism and I warned,” he said.