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Sri Lanka Easter bombings: Mass casualties in churches and hotels

Source: Al-Jazeera

A series of coordinated bombings struck churches and hotels on Easter Sunday killed 320 people in the worst attacks in Sri Lanka since the end of the civil war 10 years ago.At least 450 people were wounded after the island nation was hit by a total of eight explosions, police said, adding several of the attacks were carried out by suicide bombers.

Most of the victims were Sri Lankan and killed in three churches where worshippers attended Easter Sunday services. Three other bombings struck luxury hotels – the Cinnamon Grand, the Kingsbury and the Shangri-La – located in the heart of the capital Colombo, killing at least 35 foreigners.

Among the dead were Japanese, Dutch, Chinese, British, American and Portuguese tourists.Sri Lanka has been placed under a state of emergency as authorities aimed to maintain security and essential services during investigations into the bombings.President Maithripala Sirisena made the declaration which gives security forces special powers, including the right to search and arrest individuals. The country is also observing April 23 as a national day of mourning, a decision taken during a meeting of the National Security Council chaired by President Sirisena.

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