Two days after coordinated bombings at churches and hotels in Sri Lanka claimed at least 321 lives and left over 500 injured, security sources claimed that those who conducted the attack are Islamic State (IS) fighters.
According to security sources, the terrorist group's Amaq news agency made the claim even though it did not give any evidence for it.
The statement release by Amaq, according to security sources, read: "Those that carried out the attack that targeted members of the US-led coalition and Christians in Sri Lanka the day before yesterday are Islamic State group fighters."
Through its Amaq Agency, #ISIS claimed credit for the #EasterDay bombings in #SriLankaTerrorAttacks .Stating:
"Security source to Amaq Agency: the executors of the attack that targeted citizens of coalition states Christians in #SriLanka two days ago were ISIS" pic.twitter.com/1IT1zgdTyu
— Rita Katz (@Rita_Katz) April 23, 2019
Earlier in the day, Sri Lanka's defence minister Ruwan Wijewardene had said that the bombings were in "retaliation" to the New Zealand mosque attacks on 15 March in which 50 people were killed.
"The preliminary investigations have revealed that what happened in Sri Lanka (on Sunday) was in retaliation for the attack against Muslims in Christchurch," Wijewardene had told the parliament.
The six attacks on three churches and three luxury hotels and three related blasts later on Sunday was Sri Lanka's deadliest violence in a decade.
The United Nations, in the meanwhile, has issued a statement saying that at least 45 children were among those killed.
UNICEF spokesman Christophe Boulierac was quoted by AFP as saying that the toll from Sunday's attack could rise as many other minors "are wounded and are now fighting for their lives in intensive care units across the country."
With inputs from agencies
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Updated Date: Apr 23, 2019 18:19:38 IST