Colombo, April 21: Six near simultaneous blasts hit three churches and three hotels frequented by tourists in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, injuring nearly 300 people, officials and police said. The blasts occurred at around 8.45 a.m. (local time) as the Easter Sunday masses were in progress in churches, police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera said.
Three churches - St Anthony's Church in Colombo, St Sebastian's Church in the western coastal town of Negombo and another church in the eastern town of Batticaloa - were targeted, police said. Three explosions were reported from the five-star hotels, the Shangrila, the Cinnamon Grand and the Kingsbury. Sri Lanka Serial Bomb Blasts: Helpline Numbers Issued For Indians Seeking Assistance In Colombo And Other Places.
AFP news agency: Death toll in Srilanka multiple blasts rises to 52. (Visuals from a blast site in Colombo) pic.twitter.com/qYiWxYHjvh
— ANI (@ANI) April 21, 2019
The Colombo National Hospital spokesperson, Dr Samindi Samarakoon, said at last 280 people have been admitted with injuries. It was not immediately clear if the blasts had caused casualties. "A bomb attack to our church, please come and help," read a facebook post from St Sebasitian's Church at Katuwapitiutya, in the Western coastal town of Negombo.