Death toll in Sri Lanka rises to 290
The bombings that occurred on Easter Sunday have left almost 300 dead and over 500 injured
The death toll for the bombings that occurred in Sri Lanka on Sunday has risen overnight, with the number of confirmed victims reaching 290 - along with around 500 more that have been left injured by the blasts.
A series of co-ordinated explosions took place across the country at three churches and four hotels, with the first blast taking place at 08:45 at St Anthony's church in Colombo. The Sri Lankan High Commissioner to the UK has now confirmed that eight British nationals were killed in the explosions.
Manisha Gunasekera told Radio 4's Today programme this morning: "As of now I think there's information on eight [British] nationals who have lost their lives."
Following the bombings, a six-foot pipe bomb was also found Sri Lanka's main airport - Bandaranaike International - and Sri Lankan authorities have now ordered a curfew in the capital Colombo from 8 pm until 4 am.
Sri Lankan officials have confirmed that 24 suspects have been arrested in the wake of the targetted explosions at the five-star Shangri-La, Kingsbury and Cinnamon Grand hotels in Colombo as well as St Anthony's and two more churches in the cities of Negombo and Batticaloa. Despite the number of suspects in custody, no group has publicly taken ownership of the attacks.
According to BBC journalist Azzam Ameen the police has also reassured the public that rumours that the water supplies in Kelaniya, Kiribathgoda and Ja-Ela has been poisoned are completely false.
Rumours that poison has been mixed into water supplies to several areas in the country, are false: Police
— Azzam Ameen (@AzzamAmeen) April 22, 2019