At least 207 people were killed and some 450 wounded This Sunday in a series of explosions that occurred several cities in Sri Lanka.
The main objectives of the attack were three churches where members of the Christian minority (posed by 7% in this majority Buddhist country) had gathered to celebrate Easter and four luxury hotels in the capital Colombo.
In total, eight explosions in Colombo and the cities of Negombo, Dehiwala and Batticaloa is recorded. Police already arrested seven suspects and believed that all the attacks were carried out by the same group.
Images inside the Church of San Sebastián in Negombo, about 40 kilometers north of Colombo, show that blast had hit the ceiling.
At least 27 foreign nationals died in the explosions, including a Dutch, two Turks, two Portuguese and British and U.S. citizens as they published several news agencies.
The news agency Reuters, quoting a police source, said that at least 50 people had died in Negombo, while other sources indicate that 27 were people were killed in Batticaloa.
An employee of the hotel Cinnamon Grand told News Agency AFPthat the explosion had caused damage to the hotel’s restaurant and that it had killed at least one person.
Another was reported in a town of Dehiwala Zoo, in the South of the country, where two people died.
The President of Sri Lanka, Maithripala Sirisena, issued a statement in which he made a call to remain calm and support the authorities with their investigations.
«We firmly condemn these cowardly attacks. I call the inhabitants of Sri Lanka to keep us strong and United during this tragic moment», said the head of the Cabinet of Sri Lanka, Ranil Wickremesinghe.
The Government has imposed a curfew nationwide in response to the attacks and has blocked access to the major social networks in an apparent effort to prevent the spread of rumors and false information.
In his Twitter account, the economy Minister, Mangala Samaraweera, said that the attacks appeared to be «a well coordinated attempt to create anarchy and chaos that had killed many innocent people».
So far no group has been attributed its authorship.
In recent years, since the end of the internal conflict in the country in 2009, there have been sporadic cases of violence, especially with members of the Buddhist majority Sinhalese to perpetrate attacks against mosques and other buildings owned by Muslims.
Because of this is declared a State of emergency in March 2018.