Cardinal – reveal the “maha molakaru” of Easter Sunday or forever hold your peace
It is becoming rather annoying listening to the Cardinal & his rants on Easter Sunday “mahamolakaru”. It’s been 4 years and people rightly need a closure. If the Cardinal is disregarding investigation findings & conclusions, he must come out & file fresh charges with evidence. Even the Catholic populace of Sri Lanka are becoming irritated at the Cardinal’s rants sans evidence or facts. The Cardinal should not politicize the matter anymore than he has. If the Cardinal has contrary evidence to substantiate his claims, he must present them legally & openly, instead of taking the mike & creating doubt & anxiety in the minds of the people especially the victims families. The latest ploy of the Cardinal is to ask for “international investigation” – is the US Justice Dept report not “international”? All the Catholics must now demand that the Cardinal present his facts & not play politics.
- If the Cardinal does not agree with the video footage findings – the Cardinal must file action & give reasons why he disagrees
- If the Cardinal disagrees with the DNA analysis – the Cardinal must file action giving reasons why he refuses to accept the DNA evidence.
- The former SIS head in his evidence to the Presidential Commission claims 15,000 people would have known about the impending attacks before the attacks took place – the Cardinal & Fathers were not at St. Anthony’s church on Easter Sunday 19 April 2019. These persons included even the diplomatic community in Sri Lanka. This entire number who were informed of an impending attack & did nothing have also aided & abetted the crime.
- In January 2023 the former President Maithripala Sirisena and 4 top officials were sentenced to pay Rs.100million in compensation to the families of the victims. This falls in line with the former SIS Head’s disclosure, which still should question the others in that 15,000 & if members of the Catholic Church is also included to this list.
- The Cardinal must have forgotten that teams from FBI, Scotland Yard, Australia were in Sri Lanka & were doing investigations of their own. The US Dept of Justice in January 2021 concluded their investigations & issued their statement. The US Govt charged 3 Sri Lankan Muslims for providing material support to ISIS to carry out Easter Sunday suicide bombings that killed 268 people. The Cardinal must take note of some key facts mentioned in the US report – the criminal case filed on 11 Dec 2020 in the US District Court in Los Angeles after nearly 2 years investigation by the FBI.
- 3 Sri Lankans were “committed” supporters of ISIS & belonged to ISIS in Sri Lanka
- ISIS claimed credit for the terrorist attacks on 21 April 2019
- ISIS leader praised the attackers in late April 2019 as revenge attack.
- The US named the 3: Mohamed Naufar, the “second emir” for the group of ISIS supporters that called itself “ISIS in Sri Lanka,” who allegedly led the group’s propaganda efforts, recruited others to join ISIS, and led a series of multi-day military-type trainings; Mohamed Anwar Mohamed Riskan, who allegedly helped manufacture the IEDs used in the Easter Attacks; and Ahamed Milhan Hayathu Moahmed, who allegedly executed a police officer in order to obtain the officer’s firearm, shot a suspected informant, and scouted a location for a separate terrorist attack.
- All three defendants are charged with conspiring to provide, providing, and attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization. Additionally, Naufar and Milhan are charged with aiding and abetting the receipt of military-type training from ISIS.
- The FBI-led Joint Terrorism Task Force in Los Angeles, including personnel assigned responsibilities for extraterritorial matters, is leading the investigation. This matter is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Annamartine Salick, George E. Pence IV and Christine M. Ro of the Terrorism and Export Crimes Section, and Trial Attorney Alicia Cook of the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section. The Criminal Division’s Office of International Affairs provided valuable assistance.
- Inspite of the US Govt making the fact clear that ISIS was behind the Easter Sunday killings, even Pope Francis in April 2022 asked Sri Lanka to reveal the identity of the attackers (well they are all dead – they were the suicide bombers) https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/4/26/pope-asks-sri-lanka-to-reveal-identity-of-easter-sunday-attackers
- If the Cardinal disagrees with the US Justice Department – he must file counter action & claim why he disagrees with the 3 names declared by the US Justice Department.
- In October 2021, some 25 suspects were issued 23,270 charges over the deaths of 269 civilians on Easter Sunday. Does the Cardinal deem these charges are wrong, or that the suspects are wrongfully arrested? If so he must present the facts & evidence?
- The Cardinal is always going on a tirade about what is not being done. Can he provide evidence that the GoSL has not given compensation to the victims? Is there evidence that the GoSL did not renovate the targeted suicide venues? Is there evidence that the places of religious worship were not renovated? Can the Cardinal present the evidence.
- The Vatican is the richest religious institution in the world. It was after almost 2 years that Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith met with the Pope in the Vatican in February 2022. Then in August 2022, the Pope met Cardinal again & had been told that he would give euro 50,000 from the euro 100,000 gifted to him by somebody. But the Pope had gifted the entire euro 100,000 to the 400 victims of Easter Sunday. What is poignant is that this 100,000 was not Vatican money but a donation by somebody which the Pope was giving away. How did Cardinal Malcolm give away this amount? In SL Rupees or Euros? How much was this amount against the compensation given by the GoSL & given almost 2 years after the attack? https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2022-08/interview-cardinal-malcolm-ranjith-colombo-sri-lanka.html
Easter Sunday is not the only mass murder Sri Lanka has been witnessed. Over 3 decades, LTTE have erased entire villages, bombed buses, public places and killed hundreds and thousands of people. The Cardinal may like to shed some light on Church links to LTTE & who the maha molakaru behind that connection is.
However, it is now the Cardinal’s moral duty to present his facts or forever hold his peace.
Shenali D Waduge