(CNN)An ongoing series of bomb blasts struck luxury hotels and churches across Sri Lanka on Sunday. At least 140 people were killed and 560 have been injured in the coordinated terror attacks, which have put the entire country on lock-down.
The first wave of attacks struck at the heart of the country’s minority Christian community during busy Easter services at churches in the cities of Colombo, Negombo and Batticaloa on Sunday morning. Additional blasts ripped through three high-end hotels, the Shangri La, Cinnamon Grand and Kingsbury Hotel, all in capital city Colombo. In a statement, the Shangri-La hotel in Colombo said that the hotel’s Table One cafe was hit just after 9 a.m local time. The hotel is popular with foreign tourists and the country’s business community.A seventh and eighth blast, at a hotel in front of the Dehiwala Zoo in Dehiwala-Mount Lavinia and at a private house in Mahawila Gardens, in Dematagoda, occurred Sunday afternoon.Here’s the full list of blast sites reported so far: Read MoreSt Anthony’s Shrine, KochchikadeSt Sebastian’s Church, NegomboZion Church, BatticaloaCinnamon Grand, ColomboShangri-La Hotel, ColomboThe Kingsbury Hotel, ColomboNear Dehiwala Zoo in Dehiwala-Mount LaviniaA house in Mahawila Gardens, DematagodaAt least 20 foreigners are among the dead in Colombo, according to hospital Director General Anil Jasinghe. Hospitals have opened their doors to scores of victims. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for Sunday’s attacks. Sri Lankan security officials said police and security services immediately rushed to all affected areas and sealed off the churches and hotels.The violence ends a decade of relative peace in Sri Lanka following the end of its civil war in 2009. Terrorist bombings were common during the brutal 25-year struggle. Easter celebrationsFather Edmond Tillekeratne, social communications director for the Archdiocese of Colombo, spoke to CNN from St. Sebastian’s Church, one of the locations targeted.He said that the blast took place after Easter Mass, and that there were about 30 bodies lying in the area of the church.He said three priests had been celebrating the mass at the time of the blast. Two of them were badly injured by flying glass and debris, and one was only lightly injured because he was behind the altar.He estimated that more than a thousand people had come to the church for Easter Sunday “because it is a special day.” Many came from villages, he added.He described the ground as covered in rubble and shattered glass.”You can see pieces of flesh thrown all over the walls and on the sanctuary and even outside of the church,” he added.Sri Lankan security personnel keep watch outside a church in Colombo after a blast Sunday. Emergency meeting Police in Sri Lanka imposed an island-wide curfew starting Sunday at 6 p.m. local (8:30 a.m. ET Sunday) until the morning.The country’s authorities convened an emergency meeting involving the heads of the army, air force and navy, according to Sri Lanka’s economic reforms minister, Harsha de Silva. He said on Twitter that all emergency steps had been taken and that the group would issue a statement on the blasts. Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe condemned the blasts on Twitter, calling on Sri Lankans to “remain united and strong.” President Maithripala Sirisena also spoke out following the attacks. “I have given instructions to take very stern action against the persons who are responsible for this conspiracy,” he said. Leave has been cancelled for all police in Sri Lanka.
Sec Defence and I am at Kochchikade church. Also was at ShangriLa n Kingsbury. PM is on his way from Bentota. Emergency meeting called in a few minutes. Rescue operations underway. Please stay calm and indoors. Many casualties including foreigners.
— Harsha de Silva (@HarshadeSilvaMP) April 21, 2019 “Horrible scenes, I saw many body parts strewn all over,” de Silva said after visiting the Kochchikade church and Shangri-La Hotel in Colombo. “We took multiple casualties to hospital. Hopefully saved many lives.”De Silva confirmed that foreigners were among the casualties and said rescue operations were underway, adding that emergency crews were operating in “full force.” Christian minority Christianity is a minority religion in Sri Lanka, accounting for less than 10% of the total population of 21.4 million. According to census data, 70.2% of Sri Lankans identify as Buddhist, 12% Hindu, 9.7% Muslim, and 7.4% Christian.It is estimated that 82% of Sri Lankan Christians are Roman Catholic.