World leaders, Pope react to Sri Lanka massacres of Christians

22 April 2019
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World leaders expressed solidarity with Sri Lanka on Sunday after 207 people were killed in seven bomb blasts targeting churches and hotels.

Three of the island’s churches were hit by explosions as they celebrated Easter Sunday. Some 450 people were also injured in the attacks.

Pope Francis told the thousands of people who gathered on St Peter’s Square to hear his Easter Sunday message, that he “learned with sadness and pain of the news of the grave attacks, that precisely today, Easter, brought mourning and pain to churches and other places where people were gathered in Sri Lanka.”

“I wish to express my affectionate closeness to the Christian community, hit while it was gathered in prayer, and to all the victims of such cruel violence.

“I entrust to the Lord those who have tragically died and I pray for the wounded and for all those who are suffering as a result of this dramatic event,” he said.

Russian President also announced that he had reached out to Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena to offer his condolences.

Donald Trump sent his “heartfelt condolences” to the people of Sri Lanka in a tweet and said the US “stand ready to help.”

Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany, sent her condolences to the people of Sri Lanka in a telegram in which she deplored the attacks as “shocking.”

Neighbouring countries were among the first to offer their condolences to Sri Lanka after the blasts were reported.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra, whose country is just 60 km north of Sri Lanka, condemned the “horrific blasts” and said that “there is no place for such barbarism is our region.”

French President Emmanuel Macron expressed “deep sadness after the terrorist attacks on churches and hotels in Sri Lanka.”

Jean-Claude Junker, the president of the European Union Commission, offered his “heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims who had gathered to worship peacefully or come to visit this beautiful country.”

“Terror and barbarity will never defeat us,” Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez wrote on Twitter, also sending his “support and affection to all the victims and their relatives.”

Recep Tayyip Erdogan wished ” a speedy recovery to the injured” and offered “on behalf of the Turkish people” his condolences to the families of the victims and the people of Sri Lanka.

source: euronews.com

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