Sri Lankan PM’s Italy visit sparks controversy

Colombo (TIP): Sri Lankan PM Mahinda Rajapaksa’s visit to Italy has sparked a controversy after the country’s Catholic church Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith claimed the trip was an attempt to “mislead” the Vatican about the probe into 2019 Easter Sunday attacks that killed over 270 people, including 11 Indians. Rajapaksa left for Italy on Friday to attend an international event to be held in Bologna. He is scheduled to deliver the keynote address at the opening session of the international symposium to be held at the University of Bologna. The event will also be attended by the prime minister of Italy Mario Draghi. Cardinal Ranjith at a press conference two days ago slammed the visit. He alleged Rajapaksa was due to meet Pope Francis and would try to mislead the Vatican on the ongoing investigations into the attacks. “When there is a deadly pandemic in the country, we’re seeing a conspiracy being attempted to cover up the Easter Sunday attack,” Cardinal Ranjith told a media briefing. — PTI

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