NPP Leader Posing with A Terrorist Linked to Easter Attacks? Find Out the Truth Behind This Image, Going Viral Since 2019!

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The deadly Easter Sunday attacks in 2019 stand as one of the most gruesome tragedies in Sri Lankan history. Nearing five years since the horrid attack, the investigation has failed to provide solid answers to many questions. However, misleading posts and images continue to be circulated, falsely attributing unrelated individuals to the Easter attacks and linking them to various political narratives. Let’s look at one such claim that has been doing rounds since 2019.

Social Media Posts 

An image-based post suggests that the person standing alongside the NPP leader, Anura Kumara, is the son of Ibrahim, who has been identified as the bomber who blew himself up in Dematagoda during the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks.

Facebook | Archived

Many had questioned the veracity of this claim, while some believed it to be accurate, and some had stated the image was altered, as observed by the user comments.

We noticed that this claim had been initially shared soon after the deadly Easter attacks, as identified by multiple posts on 23rd April 2019.

Fact Check 

Identification of the Person in the Photo: Through a reverse image search and a keyword search, we managed to acquire actual details of the individual standing alongside the NPP leader. He is a Sinhalese Buddhist who has settled in Canada with his family. The person’s name is Kosala Kariyawasam, and he, along with his wife, had posted multiple explanations about the false accusations.

Sri Lankan Residing in Canada Since 2016; falsely linked as Easter Attack Terrorist!

Kosala Kariyawasam, a businessman in Canada, has publicly clarified via Facebook that he is not a terrorist and is merely an ordinary citizen residing in Canada with his family.

Below is a post from Kosala on 23rd April 2019, a couple of days after the Easter bombings, stating that he captured the photo with NPP leader Anura Kumara in Calgary, Canada. Archived

Below is a video clarification statement made by Kosala Kariyawasam from April 2019 against the false and harmful narrative linking him to terrorists.

Gauri Edirisingha, the wife of Kosala, also requested to stop sharing harmful misinformation linking her innocent husband to the Easter attacks, as seen here. Archived

In fact, Kosala and his family were among those who stood in solidarity with the victims of the Easter attacks. Here is a video report from Canada in April 2019, where Kosala expressed his heartfelt sorrow for fellow Sri Lankans who lost their lives to deadly terrorist attacks.

We further inspected the other photos & videos posted on Kosala & Gauri’s profiles, confirming that it is indeed Kosala who is seen in the viral image with Anura Kumara, and it’s also evident that the couple had migrated to Canada back in 2016.

Kosala even satirically remarked about the recurring fake posts targeting him and the NPP leader back in January 2023, as seen here. We have contacted Kosala Kariyawasam for more details and plan to update the article with such information.

Context of the Photo: AKD Was in Canada at the time of the Easter Attacks

We looked for evidence of the NPP leader’s visit to Canada and found that it matches the time frame of the photo where he’s seen posing with Kosala. Here is a post from 11th April 2019, when Anura Kumara arrived in Canada. The NPP leader participated in several dialogues in different parts of Canada during the 2019 visit; here is one such occasion in Ottawa on 20th April, the day before the dreaded Easter Attack.

Background of the Ibrahim Family:

Mohamed Ibrahim is a wealthy businessman based in Colombo, and two of his sons (Inshaf Ahmed Ibrahim and Ilham Ibrahim) were directly involved in the Easter attacks, detonating themselves as suicide bombers in prominent hotels in Colombo, resulting in numerous casualties. Additionally, his daughter-in-law also committed a suicide bombing during a police raid at their residence in Dematagoda following the Easter bombings, resulting in further casualties. More details can be found here, here, here, here and here

2019 Easter Bombers including Two Sons & One Daughter of Ibrahim, Source: Hiru News

Ibrahim’s links with JVP

Businessman Mohamed Ibrahim’s affiliations with the leftist political party JVP, which is a key component of the current political coalition NPP, have been questioned several times in the parliament since JVP had included Ibrahim’s name on their national list for the 2015 parliamentary election.

However, addressing these recurring allegations, NPP leader Anura Kumara stated that Ibrahim was detained and interrogated in the Criminal Investigation Department for about one and a half years, yet there was no revelation that his political movement related to JVP was in any way linked to the Easter Sunday terror attacks.

Also Read: FACT CHECK: අනුර සමඟ පාස්කු ප්‍රහාරයේ බෝම්බකරුවෙක්?

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The viral photo associating the person standing alongside the NPP leader with one of the sons of businessman Ibrahim, who was involved in the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks, is completely false. 

The person in the image is a Sri Lankan residing in Canada and is unrelated to the Ibrahim family, who were involved in the Easter Attacks. The photo was taken in 2019, around the same time as the Easter Attacks, during Anura Kumara’s visit to Canada.

The background of the Ibrahim family, particularly their involvement in the Easter bombings, underscores the seriousness of spreading accurate information and avoiding the propagation of misleading content.


Title: JVP Leader Posing with A Terrorist Linked to Easter Attacks? Find Out the Truth Behind Image Going Viral Since 2019!

Fact Check By: Kalana Krishantha 

Result: False

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