The Islamic State has claimed the responsibility of three militants who blew themselves up during a gun fight with security forces in Sri Lanka’s Eastern province, a media report said.
The Special Task Force and Army troops continued their hunt for the local terror outfit National Thowheeth Jamaath (NTJ), suspected to be behind the Sunday Easter blasts and conducted a raid on a terrorist hideout.
The men set off explosives after a long gun battle with police inside the terrorist safe house in the eastern town of Kalmunai.
Fifteen people including three women and six children died in the clashes, police said.
In a statement published early on Sunday by the ISIS propaganda ‘Amaq’ news agency, the ISIS said that it gave their noms du guerre as Abu Hammad, Abu Sufyan and Abu al-Qa’qa, the Colombo Gazette reported.
It said the militants clashed with them (Sri Lankan police) with automatic weapons, and after exhausting their ammunition, detonated on them their explosive belts.
The security forces had also recovered a huge cache of explosives from the spot apart from detonators, suicide kits etc.
Nine suicide bombers carried out a series of devastating explosions that tore through three churches and luxury hotels on the Easter Sunday, killing over 250 people and wounded about 500.