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Easter Attacks In Sri Lanka: What We Know

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Easter Attacks In Sri Lanka: What We Know

At least 290 are dead and 500 injured after a series of suicide bombings rocked three Sri Lankan churches and three hotels on Easter morning.

The coordinated attacks targeted the nation’s minority Christian population and tourists in Batticaloa, Negombo and the capital, Colombo. At least 39 casualties were foreign visitors, including citizens of Australia, Britain, China and the U.S, according to the New York Times

What Happened 

Local officials blame National Thowheeth Jama’ath, a radical Islamist organization that allegedly escalated its violence from recent vandalization of Buddhist statues. The group was said to have received aid from “an international network.”

As of Monday, the Sri Lankan police had arrested 24 people implicated in the attacks.

Authorities were warned of the terrorist plans 10 days earlier and failed to take precautions or pass the information to top officials, the Times said. 

What's Next 

Local police defused additional bombs and suspicious packages throughout the country Monday. The U.S. State Department warned that “terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Sri Lanka.”

The government instituted a dusk-to-dawn curfew Sunday and Monday night in the capital of Colombo while investigations continue. It also blocked access to Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ: FB), WhatsApp and other messaging services and social media to prevent the spread of misinformation.

Sri Lankan intelligence is seeking international assistance to identify and combat foreign groups that helped orchestrate the bombings, according to the BBC. 

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Public domain photo of Colombo, Sri Lanka via Wikimedia

Posted-In: BBC The New York TimesNews Media Best of Benzinga

 

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