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High Commissioner brands Sri Lanka bombings ‘evil attacks’

Explosions struck hotels and churches.

Sri Lankan Army soldiers secure the area around St Anthony’s Shrine (Eranga Jayawardena/AP)
Sri Lankan Army soldiers secure the area around St Anthony’s Shrine (Eranga Jayawardena/AP)

The British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka has condemned “evil attacks” which have killed more than 100 people in the country on Easter Sunday.

Three churches and three hotels in the country were the site of near-simultaneous blasts, with two suspected to be caused by suicide bombers.

Reports from Colombo say 138 people have died while more than 500 are in hospital.

James Dauris said he was in Colombo with his family at a church service which was cut short by the attacks.

He tweeted: “Our prayers for the victims of these evil attacks, and for their families. Our thoughts are with the medical staff, police and all involved in the response.”

Foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt said he was “deeply shocked and saddened” by the “horrifying attacks”.

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(PA Graphics)

He added: “To target those gathered for worship on Easter Sunday is particularly wicked.

“My prayers are with the victims and their families, and with those assisting in the response.”

Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner wrote: “Shocked and saddened by news of church and hotel bombings in Sri Lanka. Profound condolences to those who suffered in this terrorist attack, another attack on innocent people, truly awful news.”

Her Labour colleague Mary Creagh posted on Twitter: “Sickening #EasterSunday #SriLanka terrorist attacks on churches & hotels. Terrible to target Christians celebrating our greatest feast day. My prayers are with victims, their families & everyone caught up in this cruel violence.”

Jess Phillips, MP for Birmingham Yardley, wrote: “To target Christians on this their most sacred day is evil. Sending love to Sri Lankans caught in this terror.”

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A Sri Lankan elderly woman is helped near St Anthony’s Shrine after a blast (Eranga Jayawardena/AP)

Brexit minister James Cleverly wrote: “Sad and shocking news from Sri Lanka. My thoughts are with the Sri Lankan community both here in the UK and around the world and to those who have lost friends or family in these terrible attacks.”

A spokesman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: “We are aware of reports of a number of explosions in Sri Lanka, including Colombo, and we are urgently seeking information from the local authorities.

“British nationals in Sri Lanka should follow the instructions of the local authorities and check FCO travel advice for updates.”

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