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Over 200 killed, 450 injured in serial blasts in Sri Lanka; seven arrested

Six simultaneous blasts hit three churches and three hotels in Sri Lanka on Sunday morning. While the country was already on high alert, two more explosions were reported from around the capital city taking the total number of blasts during the day to eight.

Over 200 killed, 450 injured in serial blasts in Sri Lanka; seven arrested
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COLOMBO: At least 207 people were killed and 450 injured as a series of blasts hit Sri Lankan capital, Colombo. Seven people have also been arrested in a raid on a house in Colombo in connection with the blasts probe, news agency Reuters reported. 

"Altogether we have information of 207 dead from all hospitals. According to the information as of now, we have 450 injured people admitted to hospitals," Police Spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera said in Colombo.

The eight explosions, some of which were reportedly suicide bomb attacks, led to an immediate clampdown in the country. The government has declared a curfew and blocked access to major social media and messaging sites, including Facebook and WhatsApp. 

Six simultaneous blasts hit three churches and three hotels in Sri Lanka on Sunday morning. While the country was already on high alert, two more explosions were reported from around the capital city taking the total number of blasts during the day to eight.

The blasts in the churches occurred when people had gathered for prayers on Easter Sunday. The places that were targeted were frequented by tourists in Sri Lanka. 

No one has taken responsibility for the attacks so far. This is the first major attack that has taken place after the end of the civil war 10 years ago.

Sri Lankan PM Ranil Wickremesinghe held a national security council meeting at his home. In a tweet he said: "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." "Please avoid propagating unverified reports and speculation. The government is taking immediate steps to contain this situation," he added.