Negombo [Sri Lanka], Apr 23 (ANI): The Islamic State (ISIS) has claimed responsibility for the coordinated bombings that claimed the lives of over 300 people in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday.
The terror outfit made the claim using its Amaq news agency, according to The New York Times.
Earlier today, Sri Lanka's Deputy Defence Minister Ruwan Wijewardene said the attacks were in retaliation to the Christchurch terror attacks that took place in New Zealand on March 15.
"The preliminary investigations have revealed that what happened in Sri Lanka was in retaliation for the attack against Muslims in Christchurch," Al Jazeera quoted Wijewardene, as saying.
Wijewardene also told the Sri Lankan Parliament that the death toll has mounted to 321, including 38 foreigners.
Eight explosions rattled various suburbs in the Sri Lankan cities of Colombo, Negombo, Kochchikede and Batticaloa as the Christian community celebrated Easter Sunday on April 21.
A mass burial ceremony was held here today following a funeral service at St. Sebastian's Church, one of the churches that came under attack.
Scores of teary-eyed locals were seen in attendance at the memorial service as well as mass burial, bidding adieu to the victims of the gruesome attacks.
The ceremony was held amidst heightened security in the region, with armed forces lending shoulders to carry the mortal remains of the deceased to the burial ground.
Sri Lanka is in a state of emergency in the aftermath of the bombings. All schools have been shut down till Wednesday, as the authorities continue their search and rescue operations. (ANI)