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Death toll from Sri Lanka bombing attacks rises to 359 - police

The attacks were claimed on Tuesday by the Islamic State militant group, which said they were carried out by seven attackers but gave no evidence to support the claim.

Sri Lankan security personnel inspect the debris of a car after it explodes when police tried to defuse a bomb near St Anthony's Shrine in Colombo on 22 April 2019, a day after the series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. Picture: AFP

COLOMBO - The death toll from the Easter Sunday suicide bombing attacks on churches and hotels in Sri Lanka rose to 359, police said on Wednesday without providing any further details.

Police spokesperson Ruwan Gunasekera released the toll but did not give a breakdown of casualties from the three churches and four hotels hit by suicide bombers. The toll had been put at 321 on Tuesday, with about 500 people also wounded.

The attacks were claimed on Tuesday by the Islamic State militant group, which said they were carried out by seven attackers but gave no evidence to support the claim. If the Islamic State claim is true, that would make it one of the worst attacks carried out by the group outside Iraq and Syria.

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