New Dashcam Video of Sunday’s Blast at Saint Anthony’s Shrine

By Web Staff

Dashcam video shot from a vehicle being driven towards St. Anthony’s Shrine in Colombo on Sunday, April 21, shows the moment a bomb exploded in the building.

The blast at the tourist landmark—timed at 8:45 a.m. local time—was one of the coordinated bombings which targeted Sri Lankan churches and hotels on Easter Sunday.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the explosions, many of the suicide bombings, which killed 290 people and wounded 500 others—the deadliest attack in the island nation since the end of a civil war in 2009.

8 Explosions

The first six explosions of the day were all reported within a short period in the morning just as church services were starting.

Another explosion took place near the Tropical Inn hotel at about 2 p.m. local time, according to The Independent.

The last explosion took place in the afternoon in a house in Colombo, according to authorities cited by Reuters.

The Latest From the Scene

The morning explosions went off at three Sri Lankan luxury hotels and three churches at around 8:45 a.m. as Easter Sunday services were underway.

In just one church, St. Sebastian’s in Katuwapitiya, north of Colombo, more than 50 people have been killed, a police official told Reuters, with pictures showing bodies on the ground, blood on the pews, and a destroyed roof.

Media reported 25 people were also killed in an attack on a church in Batticaloa in Eastern Province.

The three hotels hit were the Shangri-La Colombo, Kingsbury Hotel, and Cinnamon Grand Colombo. It was unclear whether there were any casualties in the hotels.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe called a national security council meeting at his home for later in the day.

“I strongly condemn the cowardly attacks on our people today. I call upon all Sri Lankans during this tragic time to remain united and strong,” he said in a Tweet.

“Please avoid propagating unverified reports and speculation. The government is taking immediate steps to contain this situation.”

St. Sebastian’s church posted pictures of destruction inside the church on its Facebook page, showing blood on pews and the floor, and requested help from the public.

https://www.facebook.com/sebastianchurch150/photos/pcb.2139189269532076/2139186889532314/?type=3&theater

Condolences and Condemnations

President Donald Trump condemned the attacks and conveyed his sympathies to the victims.

“Heartfelt condolences from the people of the United States to the people of Sri Lanka on the horrible terrorist attacks on churches and hotels,” the president wrote on Twitter. “We stand ready to help!”

European leaders have sent sympathies and expressed support.

European Council President Donald Tusk wrote, “A tragic Easter in Sri Lanka. My thoughts are with the families of those killed in the attacks on churches and hotels; and those still fighting for their lives.”

President of the EU Commission Jean-Claude Juncker wrote, “I offer my heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims who had gathered to worship peacefully or come to visit this beautiful country. We stand ready to support.”

Epoch Times reporter Tom Ozimek and Reuters contributed to this report.

With additional reporting by Epoch Times staff.