“Sri Lanka has expelled over 600 foreign nationals, including around 200 Islamic clerics, since the Easter suicide bombings blamed on a local terror group, a minister told AFP Sunday….Home Affairs Minister Vajira Abeywardena said …’we have reviewed the visas system and took a decision to tighten visa restrictions for religious teachers’”.
Kudos to Sri Lankan authorities. In less than a month Sri Lanka learned fast, moving from appeasement to a no-nonsense strategy in protecting its people from jihadists. Its leaders did not fold in the face of Islamic supremacist loudmouths.
While Sri Lanka was still in a state of shock following the deadly Easter Sunday jihad bombings, the country looked like it was doomed in the midst of a sudden, deadly jihadist onslaught. Churches were shut down while the country deployed thousands of security forces to protect mosques. This disappointing news followed earlier dispiriting news that “Indian intelligence officials had warned their Sri Lankan counterparts of the attack just hours before the first bomb was detonated, but the Sri Lankans failed to act.” To add to the blow, its own archbishop Malcolm Ranjith met with Muslim envoys from jihad sponsoring states who assured him that the jihad bombings had “no connection to Islam,” and he shamefully and shamelessly believed them.
But then appeared a sudden ray of hope: Sri Lanka banned the burqa on security grounds, and ignored the reactive outrage of Muslim leaders. Hilmy Ahmed, vice-president of the All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulema organisation, which represents Muslim clerics, in the face of the ban, accused Sri Lanka of “interfering with the religion without consulting the religious leadership”. Then, in a followup sweep, Sri Lankan authorities raided the headquarters of jihadist group National Thawheed Jammath–suspected of involvement in the Easter bombings, and discovered the existence of another suspected jihadist group. The two groups called for a jihadist “war against non-Muslims.”
Sri Lanka moved impressively amid its jihad crisis. It has now “expelled over 600 foreign nationals, including around 200 Islamic clerics” in a tough stance that should be noted and similarly replicated in all Western countries when jihadists are discovered to be spreading their doctrine of hate and murder against infidels.
“Sri Lanka Expels 200 Islamic Clerics After Easter Attacks”, Agence France-Presse, may 5, 2019:
COLOMBO: Sri Lanka has expelled over 600 foreign nationals, including around 200 Islamic clerics, since the Easter suicide bombings blamed on a local terror group, a minister told AFP Sunday.
Home Affairs Minister Vajira Abeywardena said the clerics had entered the country legally, but amid a security crackdown after the attacks were found to have overstayed their visas, for which fines were imposed and they were expelled from the island.
“Considering the current situation in the country, we have reviewed the visas system and took a decision to tighten visa restrictions for religious teachers,” Abeywardena said.
“Out of those who were sent out, about 200 were Islamic preachers.”
The Easter Sunday bombings that killed 257 people and wounded nearly 500 were led by a local cleric who is known to have traveled to India and had made contact with terrorists there.
The minister did not give the nationalities of those who have been expelled, but police have said many foreigners who have overstayed their visas since the Easter attacks were from Bangladesh, India, Maldives and Pakistan.
“There are religious institutions which have been getting down foreign preachers for decades,” Abeywardena said. “We have no issues with them, but there are some which mushroomed recently. We will pay more attention to them.”
The minister said the government was overhauling the country’s visa policy following fears that foreign clerics could radicalize locals for a repeat of the April 21 suicide bombings, which targeted three Christian churches and three luxury hotels.