Seven monsters stole the lives of 321 innocent people, and forever changed the lives of thousands more. One of those monsters, who appeared to be struggling to walk with the weight of the explosives in his backpack, reached out and casually touched the head of a young girl dressed in her Easter dress, as she held her grandfather’s hand. The exhange took place on camera, just outside the St. Sebastian’s Catholic Church in Sri Lanka.
The Daily Mail reports – Chilling CCTV footage captured one of the suicide bombers patting a little girl on the head moments before he launched his attack at St Sebastian’s Church in Negombo.
The terrorist can be seen sauntering towards St Sebastian’s Church in Negombo while wearing a large backpack containing a ‘crude device made locally’ that was used to massacre Christian worshippers.
It is believed the clip shows the attacker touching the granddaughter of Dilip Fernando, who said: ‘At the end of the mass [my family] saw one young man go into the church in with a heavy bag. He touched my granddaughter’s head on the way past. It was the bomber.‘
The Archbishop of Colombo said at least 110 people died in the St Sebastian’s blast, the deadliest in the series of attacks against churches and luxury hotels.
Earlier today, state minister of defence Ruwan Wijewardene told parliament that preliminary investigations suggested the co-ordinated blasts were ‘in retaliation for the attack against Muslims in Christchurch’.
ISIS’s AMAQ propaganda agency said earlier today that it was responsible for the blasts. The group, who have previously made a series of unsupported claims, did not provide any evidence.
Wijewardene blamed two different local Islamist groups for the co-ordinated suicide bombings which killed at least 321 people, including 45 children on Sunday – but Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe admitted today there may be ‘some links’ with ISIS.
The National Thowheed Jamaath (NTJ), who were the subject of an intelligence warning ten days before the devastating blasts, have been named as responsible, raising questions about why more precautions were not taken.
Wijewardene also named another local group, Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen India (JMI). Little is known about JMI, other than reports it was established last year and is affiliated to a similarly named group in Bangladesh.
The news comes as it was claimed two sons of a wealthy spice trader played a key role in the Easter Sunday bomb attacks, blowing themselves up as guests queued for breakfast at the Shangri-La and Cinnamon Grand hotels in the capital.
The brothers, whose names have not been revealed, were in their late twenties and operated their own ‘family cell’, an investigation officer said. It is not known where their parents are.