Pictured: Two Suicide Bombers Who Set Off Blasts in Sri Lanka Identified as Brothers

By Zachary Stieber

Pictures of two of the nine suicide bombers who set off a series of bombs in Sri Lanka on April 21, Easter Sunday, have emerged, and they were identified as brothers.

Inshaf Ibrahim and Ilham Ibrahim were identified as two of the bombers by a senior police source, according to the Daily Mail, and the pictures were obtained from a United Nations database. Their brother-in-law confirmed their identity, and sources told Reuters and CNN, among others, that the brothers were two of the bombers.

In the pictures, Inshaf is wearing a suit while Ilham is in a polo shirt.

Police haven’t identified any of the terrorists publicly, and the names don’t match any of those given by ISIS, which released the names of eight men it claimed were involved in the attacks. Mouvli Zahran Hashim was named by some government officials as the “mastermind” behind the attacks.

Inshaf was alleged to have bombed the Shangri-La Hotel while his brother walked into the Cinnamon Grand Colombo before detonating their vests.

According to a manager at the hotel, Ilham stood in the buffet line at the Cinnamon Grand before setting off the blast.

Those explosions and others triggered in and around Colombo, including at multiple churches, left 329 people dead and some 500 others injured.

Inshaf, 38, lived with his wife and their four children in a $1.9 million, six-bedroom house in Sri Lanka’s capital, according to the Mail. The house was owned by his brother-in-law, Ashkhan Alawdeen, a jewelry trader, who told the Mail: “My brother-in-law is a psychopath. He deserves to be punished in hell. He lived under my own roof. He seemed so normal.”

An undated image posted by the ISIS “news agency” Amaq on April 23, 2019, claiming to show eight suicide bombers who carried out the Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka. All have their faces obscured except for Mouvli Zahran Hasim in the middle. Fatima Ibrahim was said to be the one standing behind the men. (Amaq News Agency)

“He had everything—a good business, a lovely wife and a four adorable children. Why would he do something like this?” Alawdeen added.

Inshaf owned Colossus Copper, a manufacturing facility, where the suicide vests may have been made. He was described by family members and employees as calm and a devout Muslim.

Ilham’s wife, Fatima Ibrahim, blew herself up when police raided his house.

Three intelligence sources told the India-based First Post that Fatima Ibrahim set off an explosion that killed her, her unborn child, and her three sons when police raided the family house on Sunday night.

She was believed to have been present when a group of masked men swore allegiance to ISIS, the radical Islamic terror group, seen in video footage released by the terrorists. She was on the right side of the frame standing behind her husband, the sources said.

Mass funeral
Mass burial for Easter Sunday bomb blast victims in Negombo, Sri Lanka, on April 24, 2019. (Gemunu Amarasinghe/Photo via AP)

The Ibrahim brothers are children of Mohammed Yusif Ibrahim, a millionaire spice trader. He was arrested after the bombings.

Fathima Fazla, a housewife who lives near the family, said that the family “seemed like good people.”

“He was famous in the area for helping the poor with food and money. It’s unthinkable his children could have done that,” Fazla told Reuters of the elder Ibrahim. “Because of what they have done, all Muslims are treated as suspects.”

A source close to the family told Reuters that Ilham openly espoused extremist Muslim ideology and went to meetings of National Thowheed Jamath, the local Islamist group authorities have named as behind the attack.

Inshaf was thought to be more moderate in his views, at least to outsiders, and was known to be generous to his staff and others.