Days after the serial bomb blasts in Sri Lanka that killed over 350 people, Islamic State released video footage showing the Sri Lankan suicide bombers swearing allegiance to the self-proclaimed caliphate leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi before the Easter Sunday massacre.
The viral video that has been doing rounds on the internet showed jihadists standing in a circle, holding hands and pledging their loyalty to the terror group leader whose whereabouts have been unknown for some time. Among the eight people, one jihadist kept his face uncovered, while the other seven were seen wearing black-and-white checkered scarves.
#BREAKING: ISIS releases the very video of the 7-8 terrorists pledging their allegiance to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, the Caliph of ISIS, before attacking Sri Lanka. This means Al-Baghdadi is alive and well as allegiance cannot be pledged to a dead Caliph. pic.twitter.com/d0AkWm4G3x— Imam Mohamad Tawhidi (@Imamofpeace) April 23, 2019
With a black ISIS flag hanging in the background, the attackers chanted in unison before raising their hands together and pointing towards the sky. The Islamic State has claimed responsibility through its propaganda 'Amaq' news agency for the coordinated terror attacks two days after the deadly bombings on Easter Sunday.
IS releases photo of 7-man suicide bomber squad
Not only the terror group released pictures of the terrorists but also made their names public. Here are the names - Abu Ubaida, Abu al-Mukhtar, Abu Khalil, Abu Hamza, Abu al-Barra, Abu Muhammad and Abu Abdullah - of the seven suicide bombers who carried out the deadly bombings in Sri Lanka. The group has not shared much information about the eighth man who has been pictured in the communiqué released by the terror outfit.
How the Sri Lanka terror attacks unfolded
The IS released a statement claiming that the bombings killed over 350 people. Their statement said that the pictured men were "the commando brothers in Sri Lanka" who carried out the dastardly attack. After translating the IS statement, it read: "In the name of Allah, our inghimasi fighters went to many churches and hotels that have Christian people. Abu Hamza attacked Antony Church in Colombo and blew himself up in the middle of the people. Abu Khalil went to Sebastian (St Sebastian Church) church in Negombo and bombed himself in the middle of the people who were celebrating Easter."
"Abu Muhammad went to Zion Church in Batticaloa and bombed himself. Abu Ubaida, Abu al-Barra and Abu al-Mukhtar went to hotels (Shangri-La, Cinnamon and Kingsbury) in the middle of Colombo city. They first exploded some bombs and then exploded themselves," the statement further read. Further, the statement stated that in the city of Dematagoda, Abu Abdullah confronted the police and killed three police officers.
Multiple bombs ripped through several cities in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, killing over 350 people. Three churches and three luxury hotels were targeted in the deadly attack. Around 11 Indians have been officially confirmed dead in the deadliest violence in the country.