A string of blasts hit high-end hotels and churches in Sri Lanka on Sunday, injuring hundreds of people as worshippers attended Easter services.
The first explosions were reported at St Anthony’s Church in Colombo and St Sebastian’s in the town of Negombo just outside the capital.
At least 160 people injured in the St Anthony’s blast had been admitted to the Colombo National Hospital by mid-morning, an official told AFP.
“A bomb attack to our church, please come and help if your family members are there,” read a post in English on the Facebook page of the St Sebastian’s Church at Katuwapitiya in Negombo.
Shortly after those blasts were reported, police confirmed three hotels in the capital had also been hit, along with a church in the town of Batticalao, in the east of the country.
An official at the Batticaloa hospital told AFP more than 300 people had been admitted with injuries following the blast there.
Photos circulating on social media showed the roof of one church had been almost blown off in the blast.
The floor was littered with a mixture of roof tiles, splintered wood and blood.
Several people could be seen covered in blood, with some trying to help those with more serious injuries.
The images could not immediately be verified.
Only around six percent of mainly Buddhist Sri Lanka is Catholic, but the religion is seen as a unifying force because it includes people from both the Tamil and majority Sinhalese ethnic groups.
more recommended stories
North Korea Fires ‘Ballistic Missile’ Toward Eastern Waters
North Korea has fired what is.
North Korea says it successfully tested hypersonic missile
North Korea successfully test-fired a hypersonic.
North Korea launches ballistic missile into Sea of Japan
North Korea launched at least one.
India slams United Kingdom’s new travel rules as ‘discriminatory,’
Indian foreign minister urges the UK.
China ‘open’ to international cooperation to identify coronavirus source
China is “open” to international cooperation.
Jim Jong Un is Not Dead; South Korea says
South Korea believes North Korean leader.
China updates death toll in Wuhan, adds 1,300 to total, blaming reporting delays
Nearly 1,300 people who died of.
Plane crashes into a building with almost 100 people on board
A Bek Air plane with 95.