The state minister of defense on Tuesday said the bombings in Sri Lanka were retaliation for a recent attack in New Zealand.
Easter Sunday was a fateful day in the country as bomb blasts killed over 300 people
Ruwan Wijewardene told Sri Lanka parliament that, “The preliminary investigations have revealed that what happened in Sri Lanka on Sunday was in retaliation for the attack against Muslims in Christchurch.”
The attack in Christchurch, New Zealand saw an armed gunman shoot people in two mosques killing 50 on March 15.
A domestic Muslim organization by the name National Thowfeek Jama’ath (NTJ) has been linked to the simultaneous bombings.
The minster added that NTJ executed the attacks along with another local group called Jammiyathul Millathu Ibrahim. “It was done by National Thawheed Jama’ut along with JMI”.
There have reports that the attackers had support from an international network.
Top Sri Lankan law enforcement officers received an alert on April 11 warning that suicide bombers from NTJ were planning to attack “prominent churches”. Unfortunately, delayed action on the intelligence caused loss of lives of locals and foreigners.
So far, 40 people have been arrested in connection to the blasts.
Hundreds of people were wounded with the death toll rising to over 300.
The attacks struck churches and luxury hotels in Colombo. A total of 8bombs went off four of them occurring at the same time 8.45am.
The affected locations targeted were St. Sabastian’s Church, Shangri-La Hotel, St. Anthony’s Shrine, and the Kingsbury hit at 8.45am, The Cinnamon Grand hotel at 8.50am, Zion Church at 9.05am, Tropical Inn Hotel at 1.45pm, and Dematogoda at 2.15pm during a police raid.