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World leaders express deep condolences to Sri Lanka following deadly blasts

Condolences from world leaders have been pouring in to Sri Lanka in the wake of a series of devastating attacks that hit the island nation during Easter celebrations.

Over 200 people have been killed as well as hundreds injured in what appears to be a series of eight coordinated explosions that rocked churches and luxury hotels in the Sri Lankan commercial capital of Colombo, as well as some other cities. The horrific attacks drew widespread condemnation from the leaders across the world, who also extended their sympathies to those affected by the incidents and expressed their readiness to help.

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US & Canada

US President Donald Trump has sent his “heartfelt condolences to the great people of Sri Lanka,” as well as offering America’s assistance in dealing with the aftermath of the tragedy.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called the latest news from Sri Lanka “absolutely horrific,” while saying that Canada “strongly condemns the heinous attack.”

Europe

In Europe, national leaders, EU officials and religious leaders stood united in their condemnation of the deadly attacks. UK Prime Minister Theresa May denounced the bombings as “truly appalling,” adding that the world “must stand together to make sure that no one should ever have to practice their faith in fear.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said “it is shocking that people who had gathered to celebrate Easter were the deliberate target of vicious attacks.” “Religious hatred and intolerance that manifested themselves so terribly today should not win,” she wrote in a telegram sent to the Sri Lankan president.

French President Emmanuel Macron said he was “deeply saddened” by the attacks and said that France “firmly condemns these odious acts.”

EU Commission President Jean-Claude Junker and European Council President Donald Tusk also expressed their condolences to the people of Sri Lanka and said that their thoughts are with those affected by the attacks.

Meanwhile, President of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani said that the attacks in Sri Lanka amount to no less than a “real genocide perpetrated against Christians.”

Pope Francis expressed his “affectionate closeness to the Christian community, hit while it was gathered in prayer, and to all the victims of such cruel violence” in Sri Lanka as he addressed thousands of people gathered in St. Peter’s Square in the Vatican to hear his Easter Sunday message. Meanwhile, the leader of the Anglican Communion, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, said on Twitter that those affected by the attacks “will be in the prayers of millions marking Easter Sunday around the world.”

Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed his “deep shock” over the “murderous attacks against innocent civilians in Sri Lanka.” He also offered Israel’s help to the island nation and called on the world to “unite in struggle against the plague of terror.”

Russia

President Vladimir Putin reached out to Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena to express his condolences following the tragedy, the Kremlin said in a Twitter post.

The Russian Foreign Ministry has condemned what it called “yet another inhumane terrorist raid that cannot be justified.”

“The tragic events that took place in Sri Lanka show once again that the international community needs to consolidate its efforts in fight against international terrorism,” it said in a statement.

New Zealand & Australia

In New Zealand, where 50 people were killed in a shooting attack on two mosques just last month, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said seeing an attack in Sri Lanka was “devastating.” New Zealand “condemns all acts of terrorism,” she said in a statement, adding that the nation’s “resolve has only been strengthened by the attack on our soil on March 15.”

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Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison also condemned what he called the “devastating and horrific” terrorist attacks.

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