Sri Lanka had recently earned the title of the best place in the world to visit in 2019 from travel guide publisher Lonely Planet.
However, A series of horrendous incidents took place in this popular tourist destination on April 21, 2019, which was celebrated as a special day in the holy calendar (known as Easter Sunday). This Island country in South Asia lost its record of a decade long peace in the country after eight explosions took place in and around its capital.
Gruesome bombings killed at least 290 people in Sri Lankan churches and luxury hotels. Of all the people killed, there were 30 foreigners which included three Indians, five British citizens, including two dual US-UK nationals, two Turkish nationals, two Chinese citizens and many more.
“You can see pieces of flesh thrown all over the walls and on the sanctuary and even outside of the church,” Father Edmond Tillekeratne, social communications director for the Archdiocese of Colombo, told CNN from St. Sebastian’s Church, one of the explosion sites.
St. Anthony’s Shrine, Shangri-La Hotel, and St. Sebastian’s Church are some of the eight sites of explosions.
Warning of a possible attack by an intelligence memo was circulated 10 days earlier, raising questions about whether more preventative measures could have been taken.
Sri Lanka’s Minister of Telecommunications, Harin Fernando, in his tweet, “Serious action need to be taken as to why this warning was ignored,” attached a photo of the document, titled “Information of an alleged plan attack,” which is dated April 11 and signed by the Deputy Inspector General of Police.
Seven people have been arrested but there is no claim of responsibility by any terror group yet.
The Sri Lankan government has blocked social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram and also imposed an island-wide curfew from Sunday evening in order to carry out investigations and prevent future causalities.
The Christian community of Sri Lanka was the main target of Sunday’s attack. This is not the first time; the Christian community was the target. From the attack on Christian students at a university in Kenya in 2015 to bomb attacks at a park in a Christian neighborhood in Pakistan in 2016 to attacks on the community members in India in 2018, the incidents against the community have been witnessed by the world for some time now.