With black flags, Sri Lanka Christians protest bombing probe

Light of Truth

Sri Lanka’s Christian community hoisted black flags at churches and homes on August 21 to express anger over the government’s investigation into the 2019 Easter Sunday bomb attacks, which killed 269 people.
Twenty-five people were charged last week in connection with the bombings. But the country’s Catholic Church says these could be “smaller fish,” and accuses the government of still not taking steps to identify the true conspirators. The head of the archdiocese of Colombo, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, has raised questions over allegations that state intelligence personnel knew and met with the attackers. Two local Muslim groups that had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group were blamed for the six near-simultaneous suicide bomb attacks, which hit three churches and three luxury hotels on April 21, 2019. It is not known if the groups had actual links to the Islamic State.
Under cloudy skies, a row of large black flags billowed in the wind Saturday in front of St Anthony’s Church, which was targeted in the 2019 attacks. Behind a concrete barrier, religious statues overlooked armed police and signs that read: “Hiding the truth is a grand political conspiracy.”
In some areas, Muslim residents hoisted black flags in a show of solidarity. Church bells tolled at 8:45 a.m., the time the first blast occurred. Prayer services were held inside St. Anthony’s, but with empty pews because of a 10-day coronavirus lockdown that began late Friday.

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