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Sri Lanka Easter bombings kill 290, 24 arrested

ECONOMYNEXT – Easter Sunday bombings at several churches and hotels in Sri Lanka by suspected extremists have killed over 290 persons police said Tuesday while 24 persons have been arrested and are being questioned.

Among the dead are at least 30 foreign nationals. Police said over 500 have been injured.

Suspected suicide bombers attached Churches in Colombo, Negombo and the East and three hotels in the capital. Three policemen died in another explosion after mid-day when they went to investigate a suspected safe house of the bombers.

Sri Lanka Air Force defused a pipe bomb or an improvised explosive housed in a pipe.

State Minister for Defence Ruwan Wijewardene said the bombings were carried out by an extremist group.

Cabinet Minister Harin Fernando had tweeted what is said to be an internal police memo addressed to heads of VIP security warning of a possible attack on Churches by an organization calling itself National Thowheeth Jama’ath.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said there had been some prior information on impending attacks but the he and the cabinet had not been fully informed.

Police had also had taken into custody a van which was suspected to have ferried the bombers to Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo along with its driver, a statement said. (Colombo/Arp22/2019 – Update II-SB)