In what is seen as major breakthrough in finding the attackers of the Easter Sunday bombings in Sri Lanka, it is now learnt from media reports that Sri Lankan authorities have confirmed through DNA tests that one of the two suicide bombers who died in the Shangri-La Hotel bombing during Easter Sunday attacks was Zahran Cassim, the leader of the local jihadi group National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ).
Zahran, the mastermind behind the Easter blasts, led the attack on the Shangri-La hotel and was accompanied by a second bomber identified as Ilham Ahmed Ibrahim. He was killed inside the luxury hotel where he blew himself up. A senior analyst at the Government Analyst’s Department said that the DNA tests done using the blood samples of Zahran’s wife, his daughter and a brother have proved that he died in the suicide attack on Shangri-La Hotel.
Nine suicide bombers carried out a series of devastating blasts that tore through three churches and as many luxury hotels on 21 April that killed over 253 people and left over 500 injured.