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Marianne Björklund: the Attack is a crushing blow to Sri Lanka to heal the wounds after the civil war

Sri Lanka woke up to a shock on easter Sunday. My påskbönen erupted in explosions that killed at least 200 people and injured several hundred.

It involves at least eight explosions, including three in the churches during the påskbönen.

Pictures of St Sebastiankyrkan in Katuwapitiya, north of the capital city of Colombo, shows heavy damage. The roof has collapsed and the benches are covered in the blood of the church in which at least 67 have been killed.

Rumors are about more attacks and the police have asked the public to stay at home. The attack was unexpected and is a major blow to the country that has been relatively peaceful since the bloody civil war ended in 2009.

Read more: Attacks against churches and hotels in Sri Lanka

It is unclear, as no group has so far claimed responsibility for the killings that seem to have been well planned and coordinated. In the past, there has been a concern that the return of ICE-soldiers could pose a threat to Sri Lanka. According to the AFP news agency to be a secret weapon for ten days ago have warned that suicide bombers, which represents a radical muslim group planned an act against the churches. It must have been about the group Thowheeth Jama'ath previously been linked to the destruction of buddhist statues. But who was behind Sunday's of the world, is unknown so far.

Christians are a minority, around 7.5 percent of Sri Lanka's population of around 22 million. The majority, 70 percent, are buddhists. There has previously been discrimination, threats and violence against christians. Buddhist monks have among other things tried to interrupt Sunday mass on a number of occasions.

In a report on human rights in Sri Lanka from the U.S. department of state last year, it emerged that some christian churches felt threatened to shut down its operations because the authorities have classified them as ”unauthorized gatherings”.

According to the same report, to buddhist monks regularly have tried to close the christian and muslim böneplatser. Muslims constitute around 10 per cent of the population.

Read more: Tasks: police Chief had warned of possible terrorist attack

The bloody civil war that took at least 70.000 people's life came to an end since the militant separatistgruppen the tamil tigers were defeated. The country has been reasonably, but not absolutely, spared from violent attacks since then, and the heals still the wounds from the civil war. There have been accusations against the government for killing thousands of civilian tamils. Moreover, buddhists have attacked mosques. In march 2018, it went so far that such attacks were the government to declare a state of emergency.

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