‘Controlled explosion’ reported near Colombo church

Colombo [Sri Lanka], Apr 22 (ANI): A “controlled explosion” was recorded near the St. Anthony’s church in Kochchikade here on Monday, according to reports in Sri Lankan media.
The fresh explosion took place when Sri Lanka’s Special Task Force’s (STF) bomb disposal units were diffusing an explosive device found inside a van stationed near the church, Sri Lankan news portal Ada Derana reported. The damage caused by the latest explosion is yet to be revealed.
This comes as 87 low explosive detonators were found at a private bus stand in Bastian Mawatha, in Pettah, as per the Police Media Spokesperson.
The toll in the eight coordinated bomb blasts that rocked Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday rose to 290, police said on Monday.
Meanwhile, 24 people were arrested in connection with the gruesome attacks which left around 500 people injured.
A national emergency has been declared across Sri Lanka in the wake of the blasts, the worst violence in Sri Lanka since the end of the civil war 10 years ago.
Police also said that an improvised pipe bomb found close to Colombo’s main airport late was successfully detonated late Sunday.
While investigations into the deadly attacks are underway, there was no immediate claim of responsibility for the terrorist incident.
Sri Lankan authorities suspect that the attacks were carried out by suicide bombers, terming the tragedy as a case of ‘intelligence failure’.
The Easter Sunday bomb attacks in Sri Lanka were carried out by Sri Lankan nationals with the help of an international network, cabinet spokesman Rajitha Senaratne said on Monday.
Cabinet spokesman Rajitha Senaratne told the media that the bomb attacks were carried out by Sri Lankan nationals with the help of an international network.
“We do not believe these attacks were carried out by a group of people who were confined to this country. There was an international network without which these attacks could not have succeeded,” Senaratne said, according to Arab News.
He had earlier told journalists during a presser on Monday that all the attackers were members of the National Thowheeth Jamath (NTJ) terror group. (ANI)

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