Sri Lankan Churches Targeted in Bombings on Easter Sunday: Victims Number Over 150
At least 156 people have been killed by bombs simultaneously exploding inside churches and other buildings throughout Sri Lanka during Easter Sunday.
In the capital of Colombo, three hotels and a church were hit. Another 67 were killed in an attack on a church in Negombo north of the capital, with another 25 dead at a church in the town of Batticaloa, in the east of the country.
More than 500 others have been taken to hospital with injuries. Most victims were Christian locals attending morning mass in celebration of Easter Sunday.
The explosions all occurred roughly at the same time, around 8:45am local time.
Among the victims were at least 35 foreigners who were staying in five-star hotels in the middle of the capital city of Colombo — including reportedly Cinnamon Grand, Shangri-La and the Kingston.
One of the churches targeted was St Anthony’s in Colombo. The other two were St Sebastian’s in Negombo, a Catholic majority town 30km from the capital, and Zion Church in Batticaloa, 250km east of the capital.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has convened Sri Lanka’s top military officials at an emergency meeting of the National Security Council. The violence is the worst since Sri Lanka’s bloody civil war ended a decade ago.
Earlier, Wickremesinghe tweeted that “the government is taking immediate steps to contain the situation.”