Nine bombings of churches, luxury hotels and other sites on Easter Sunday killed more than 200 people and wounded hundreds more in Sri Lanka’s deadliest violence since a devastating civil war in the South Asian island nation ended a decade ago.
Defense Minister Ruwan Wijewardena described the blasts as a terrorist attack by religious extremists, and police said 13 suspects were arrested, though there was no immediate claim of responsibility.
Wijewardena said most of the bombings were believed to have been suicide attacks.
Sri Lankan security stand guard outside St. Sebastian's Church in Negombo, just north of Colombo, after multiple explosions targeting churches and hotels across Sri Lanka on Sunday (Stringer Photo/Getty Images).
Sri Lankan security forces secure the area around St. Anthony's Shrine after an explosion hit St Anthony's Church in Kochchikade on Sunday. According to reports, at least 400 people were injured and are undergoing treatment as the blasts took place at churches as well as neighboring towns and hotels (Stringer Photo/Getty Images).
Sri Lankan officials inspect St. Sebastian's Church in Negombo. Sunday’s incidents marked the worst violence in Sri Lanka since the civil war ended a decade ago. Christians worldwide celebrated Easter on Sunday, commemorating the day on which Jesus Christ is believed to have risen from the dead (Stringer Photo/Getty Images).
Sri Lankan officials are seen inspecting St. Sebastian's Church in Negombo. Multiple explosions rocked three churches and three luxury hotels in and around Colombo, as well as at Batticaloa in Sri Lanka during Easter Sunday mass (Stringer Photo/Getty Images).
Security forces stand guard around St. Anthony's Shrine on Sunday. (Stringer Photo/Getty Images).
The explosions — mostly in or around Colombo, the capital — collapsed ceilings and blew out windows, killing worshipers and hotel guests in one scene after another of smoke, soot, blood, broken glass, screams and wailing alarms. Victims were carried out of blood-spattered pews (Stringer Photo/Getty Images).
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