Pictures of the interior of the factory Colossus have emerged, showing the location where the bombs, which killed at least 359 people including eight Britons, may have been made. The factory, on the outskirts of Sri Lanka’s capital city Colombo, was owned by millionaire businessman Inshaf Ahmed Ibrahim, one of the nine people accused of bombing the hotels and churches on Sunday, police said. The snaps show a seemingly normal site filled only with industrial machines, construction materials and spools of copper wires.
The factory has been quickly linked to the attacks after Ibrahim was identified as one of the terrorists.
Nine people at the factory, including the manager, were arrested shortly before midnight on Sunday.
A total of 60 people have been detained in connection with the attacks in the past two days, and 32 remain in custody.
Ibrahim and his brother Ilham devastated the Shangri-La and Cinnamon Grand hotels in two separate attacks out of a total of eight.
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Later on Sunday, Ibrahim’s wife Fatima also blew herself up with her unborn child and her three young sons as police tried to raid her family home, Indian intelligence sources have told Indian news website Firstpost.
The pictures have emerged as investigators confirmed most of the attackers were “well educated” and “middle class”.
One of them, named by security sources Abdul Lathief Jameel Mohamed, is believed to have studied in south-east England between 2006 and 2007.
Sri Lankan Deputy Defence Minister Ruwan Wijewardene, who didn’t name the attacker, said he “later on did his postgraduate in Australia before coming back to settle in Sri Lanka”.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has said Islamic State (ISIS) may be linked to the blasts.
The terrorist group hasn’t provided evidence of his connection to the attacks, but has claimed responsibility for the bombing online, saying it had “targeted nationals of the crusader alliance and Christians in Sri Lanka”.
The terrorists also shared on their group’s propaganda agency, Amaq, a picture of eight men they said carried out the attack.
The Sri Lankan government is currently under fire after the Prime Minister admitted intelligence agencies had information that could have stopped the attacks if it had been passed on correctly.
Police are investigating whether the warnings went missing or had been simply ignored.
Mr Wickremesinghe said: “Some of the suspects are on the run.
“Some of those suspects are armed and dangerous.
“There are still explosives and militants out there and the police are looking for them.”
The leader of the Sri Lankan parliament, Lakshman Kiriella, claimed senior officials deliberately withheld intelligence about the potential for attacks.
He said: “Some top intelligence officials hid the intelligence information purposefully.
“Information was there, but the top brass security officials did not take appropriate actions.
“Somebody is controlling these top intelligence officials.
“The security council is doing politics. We need to investigate into this.”