Sri Lanka attacks - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Sri Lanka attacks

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Sri Lanka police chief arrested over Easter attacks failures

Jul 02, 2019 - 8:11 PM

An official says Inspector-General Pujith Jayasundara and former defense secretary Hemasiri Fernando were at different hospitals undergoing treatment when detectives arrested them

EASTER ATTACKS. Security personnel stand guard outside St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the church was hit in series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. File photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Police chief faces crimes against humanity charge over Sri Lanka attacks

Jul 01, 2019 - 11:31 PM

'Their negligence amounts to what is known under international law to be grave crimes against humanity,' says Attorney General Dappula de Livera

EASTER BOMBINGS. Security personnel stand guard outside St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the church was hit in series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. File photo by Mohd Rasfan/AFP

Sri Lanka extends emergency in surprise move

Jun 22, 2019 - 2:03 PM

There is no immediate word from the government on why President Maithripala Sirisena changed his mind on relaxing the tough laws imposed after the Easter Sunday attacks

Sri Lankan soldiers secure an area near St. Anthony's Shrine after a car explosion in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. - The death toll from bomb blasts that ripped through churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka rose dramatically April 22 to 290 -- including dozens of foreigners -- as police announced new arrests over the country's worst attacks for more than a decade. (Photo by Jewel SAMAD / AFP)

Sri Lanka to charge police for 'lapses' over Easter attacks

Jun 20, 2019 - 11:25 PM

Nine police officers will face 'criminal investigations' for failing to act on warnings ahead of the April 21 bombings on 3 churches and 3 hotels carried out by Islamic State-backed jihadists

AFTERMATH. Sri Lankan security personnel and police investigators look through debris outside Zion Church following an explosion in Batticaloa in eastern Sri Lanka on April 21, 2019. File photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachichi/AFP

Sri Lanka Muslim ministers resign en masse over Easter bombings

Jun 03, 2019 - 11:21 PM

The resignations of 9 government legislators come after a Buddhist monk lawmaker supporting President Maithripala Sirisena demanded the sacking of 3 top Muslim politicians

EASTER BOMBINGS. In this file photo, Sri Lankan security personnel and police investigators look through debris outside Zion Church following an explosion in Batticaloa in eastern Sri Lanka on April 21, 2019. File photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachchi/AFP

Sri Lanka to relax emergency in a month – president

May 27, 2019 - 8:50 PM

'The emergency was declared to deal with the immediate security situation. However, it will not be necessary to extend this any further,' says Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena

STATE OF EMERGENCY. In this file photo, Sri Lankan navy personnel carry on repair works on the facade of St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on May 2, 2019, after a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels on Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka. File photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachchi/AFP

Sri Lanka detain nearly 100 in anti-Islamist swoops

May 26, 2019 - 7:27 PM

Some 3,000 military personnel are deployed in and around the capital as well as other key towns for cordon-and-search activities

UNREST. Sri Lankan security personnel stand guard after clashes erupted between Christian and Muslim communities in Negombo on May 6, 2019. Photo by STR/AFP

Sri Lanka extends emergency a month after suicide bombings

May 22, 2019 - 10:21 PM

Sri Lanka's president issues a proclamation saying that the emergency will continue for another 30 days, citing 'public security'

SECURITY. In this file photo, Sri Lankan security personnel keep watch outside the church premises following a blast at the St. Anthony's Shrine in Kochchikade, Colombo on April 21, 2019.  File photo by Ishara S. Kodikara/AFP

Fake news rampant after Sri Lanka attacks despite social media ban

May 22, 2019 - 1:21 PM

Social media, aside from being a communication tool, becomes a means to spread confusion and vitriol as the island struggles to come to terms with one of the worst terror attacks in its history

GUARD. Security personnel stand guard outside St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the church was hit in series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Safe for Catholic schools to reopen – Sri Lanka army

May 21, 2019 - 2:59 PM

Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake says security forces would ensure schools were not targeted by Islamic militants responsible for the April 21 bombings

SCHOOL DUTY. Sri Lankan bomb disposal squad officers use a sniffer dog to check for explosives at a school in Colombo on May 5, 2019, ahead of the reopening of all public schools after an extended Easter holiday. Photo by Ishara S. Kodikara/AFP

Sri Lanka Muslims pray at vandalized mosques

May 17, 2019 - 6:13 PM

Police say security will remain tight over the weekend for a major Buddhist festival as well as the 10th anniversary of the ending of the country's decades-long Tamil separatist war

AFTERMATH. A Muslim man stands in front of the Jumha mosque after a mob attack in Minuwangoda on May 14, 2019. File photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachchi/AFP

Sri Lanka Catholic schools to reopen after attacks

May 09, 2019 - 5:54 PM

All state-run schools – more than 10,000 in total – have resumed classes on Monday, May 6, after police and security forces deployed armed guards

BACK TO SCHOOL. Sri Lankan school students return to classes as schools re-open across the country after the Easter attacks in Colombo on May 6, 2019. Photo by Ishara S. Kodikara/AFP

Sri Lanka says jihadi threat persists despite arrests

May 07, 2019 - 1:38 PM

(UPDATED) The St Anthony's church also partially opens for prayers amid tight security even as the military and police guard the historic place of worship dating back to 1740

STANDING GUARD. Soldiers stand guard outside a mosque ahead of the Friday noon prayer in Colombo on April 26, 2019, following a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels on Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka. File photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Sri Lanka expels 200 Islamic clerics after Easter attacks

May 05, 2019 - 6:05 PM

Over 600 foreign nationals are expelled in Sri Lanka after a security crackdown showed they have overstayed their visas

EASTER ATTACKS. Security personnel stand guard near St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 24, 2019, 3 days after a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Sri Lanka Catholics say lonely prayers as churches close for 2nd week

May 05, 2019 - 2:45 PM

With churches closed, the country's Catholics had to make do with a second televised mass on Sunday

CANCELED MASSES. A cross is pictured the residence of Catholic Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith, in Colombo on April 30, 2019. Photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachchi/AFP

More Sri Lanka attacks feared as Muslims condemn Easter bombs

May 03, 2019 - 10:04 PM

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe hopes normality will return by Monday, May 6, when public schools reopen after an extended Easter vacation

Sri Lanka mass canceled over fresh attack fears

May 02, 2019 - 4:40 PM

(UPDATED) The archbishop of Colombo, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith says that a 'reliable foreign source' has alerted him to possible attacks this weekend

CANCELED MASSES. A cross is pictured the residence of Catholic Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith, in Colombo on April 30, 2019. Photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachchi/AFP

Sri Lanka attacks death toll rises to 257

May 02, 2019 - 3:22 PM

Authorities warn the final number of dead from the April 21 attacks on three churches and three Colombo hotels would rise further

MORE DEATHS. Priests and relatives carry the coffin of a bomb blast victim after a funeral service at St Sebastian's Church in Negombo on April 23, 2019, after a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. File photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Sri Lanka names Easter suicide bombers

May 01, 2019 - 11:44 PM

Police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera confirms that two of the luxury hotels were bombed by two brothers from a wealthy Colombo family involved in spice exports

STANDING GUARD. Security personnel stand guard outside St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the church was hit in series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. File photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Sri Lanka Catholics to resume mass 2 weeks after attacks

Apr 30, 2019 - 5:08 PM

'But we will start with a smaller number of masses and see if we can slowly increase it depending on how the situation develops,' says Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith

Sri Lanka says 42 foreigners among Easter victims

Apr 30, 2019 - 2:30 PM

Another 12 foreigners remain unaccounted for and could be among still unidentified bodies at Colombo's police morgue, foreign ministry officials say

ST. ANTHONY'S SHRINE. A general view of St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 29, 2019, a week after a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels on Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka. Photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachichi/AFP

Sri Lanka suspends police chief over Easter attacks

Apr 29, 2019 - 7:54 PM

Chief of police Pujith Jayasundara had refused to quit to clear the way for a shake-up of the 85,000-strong force, prompting President Maithripala Sirisena to suspend him on April 29

Sri Lanka police wrongly ID American Muslim over attacks

Apr 26, 2019 - 3:03 PM

Sri Lankan police on Thursday issue a statement confirming the photo published alongside the name 'Abdul Cader Fathima Khadhiya' was not in fact of the suspect

GUARDING MOSQUES. Soldiers stand guard outside a mosque ahead of the Friday noon prayer in Colombo on April 26, 2019, following a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels on Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka. Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Australia warns more terror attacks 'likely' in Sri Lanka

Apr 26, 2019 - 12:46 PM

'Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners,' Australia's foreign ministry says

SRI LANKA. Sri Lankan soldiers secure an area near St. Anthony's Shrine after a car explosion in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Israel tells citizens to leave Sri Lanka over 'concrete threat'

Apr 25, 2019 - 9:36 PM

The recommendation from Israel's counterterrorism bureau says it is issuing the travel warning after consultations with security and foreign ministry officials

AFTERMATH. Sri Lankan security personnel and police investigators look through debris outside Zion Church following an explosion in Batticaloa in eastern Sri Lanka on April 21, 2019. Photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachichi/AFP

Sri Lanka admits 'major' lapse over deadly Islamist blasts

Apr 24, 2019 - 8:22 PM

Police have so far arrested 58 people, all Sri Lankans, and security remains heavy, with bomb squads carrying out several controlled explosions of suspect packages

'MAJOR' LAPSE. Security personnel stand guard near St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 24, 2019, 3 days after a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Sri Lanka detains new suspects amid frantic hunt for bombers

Apr 24, 2019 - 2:20 PM

Authorities are urgently investigating a claim by ISIS that it staged what was one of the worst militant strikes on civilians in Asia

STANDING GUARD. Security personnel stand guard outside St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the church was hit in series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

ISIS claims Sri Lanka bombings, releases photo of attackers

Apr 23, 2019 - 7:22 PM

(UPDATED) The massive casualty toll would make the Easter attacks the deadliest overseas operation claimed by ISIS since the group proclaimed its worldwide caliphate in mid-2014

TRAGEDY. Sri Lankan security personnel walk through debris following an explosion in St Sebastian's Church in Negombo, north of the capital Colombo, on April 21, 2019. File photo by STR/AFP

Probe shows Sri Lanka attacks 'retaliation for Christchurch' – government

Apr 23, 2019 - 5:28 PM

'The preliminary investigations have revealed that what happened in Sri Lanka was in retaliation for the attack against Muslims in Christchurch,' says state minister of defense Ruwan Wijewardene

MOURNING. A Sri Lankan mourner holds prayer beads during moments of silence in tribute to bomb blast victims in Colombo on April 23, 2019, two days after a string of suicide bomb attacks on churches and hotels. Photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachchi/AFP

Sri Lanka falls silent for victims of Islamist attack

Apr 23, 2019 - 12:44 PM

Flags are lowered to half mast on government buildings, and people bow their heads and reflect silently on the violence that has caused international outrage

FUNERAL SERVICE. Priests and relatives carry the coffin of a bomb blast victim after a funeral service at St Sebastian's Church in Negombo on April 23, 2019, two days after a series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP

Fresh arrests as Sri Lanka Easter attack toll hits 290

Apr 22, 2019 - 2:27 PM

Two additional blasts are triggered as security forces carried out raids searching for suspects

ON GUARD. Security personnel stand guard outside St. Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the church was hit in series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Photo by Mohd Rasfan/AFP