Photo: Kyodo News
The death toll in the Easter Sunday attacks on churches and high-end hotels in Colombo and other parts of Sri Lanka has soared to 290, with about 500 others injured, police said Monday, according to local media.
Thirteen people have been arrested in connection with the eight bombings, which President Maithripala Sirisena called terror attacks. At least 35 foreigners including Chinese, American, Dutch, Indian and Japanese nationals were among the dead, Kyodo News reports.
The Japanese Foreign Ministry confirmed one Japanese died. It said four others were injured in the blasts, but the extent of their injuries was unknown.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the worst violence the South Asian island nation has seen since the end of a civil war a decade ago.
Local newspaper The Daily Mirror reported that six blasts in Colombo on Sunday morning were carried out by suicide bombers.
Local media reports suggested Sri Lankan police were informed about a threat to churches from a radical Islamist group and issued a warning.
Buddhism is the dominant religion of Sri Lanka, being practiced by around 70 percent of the population. Less than 10 percent of its people are Christian, around 10 percent Muslim and another 10 percent Hindu.
The Sri Lankan government imposed a nationwide curfew with immediate effect and blocked access to all major social media and messaging services to prevent the spread of false news reports. People at Bandaranaike international airport in Colombo remained stranded after the curfew was imposed.
Source: Kazinform News Agency
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