'Authorities in the island nation of Sri Lanka suspect a hitherto little-known Sri Lankan Islamist group for a string of deadly suicide bombing attacks against churches and hotels on Easter that killed nearly 300 people and left hundreds more injured.
While no one has claimed responsibility for the bombing attacks across Sri Lanka Sunday, investigators are focusing their attention on a radical Islamic group.
Police say there had been warnings 10 days beforehand that the organization, National Thowheeth Jama’ath (NTJ), might attack churches in Sri Lanka. On April 11th, police chief Pujuth Jayasundara sent out a memo to senior officers warning of possible bombing attacks by the NTJ against “prominent churches”.'
'All seven attacks on the Christian churches and hotels of Sri Lanka were perpetrated by suicide bombers. The horrendous death toll had risen by Monday morning, April 22 to 290, including more than 30 foreigners and at least 500 injured. The security police have reported 24 arrests and the discovery of a van used in the massacre, but are unable to name the entity behind the bombings. The government in Colombo has been thrown out of kilter for some time by infighting among factions, which is why the US intelligence warning a week ago to prepare for a wave of suicide attacks was not passed on to the ministers concerned; no preventive arrests were made and the authorities responsible for security at the tourist sites, Sri Lanka’s main source of revenue, were not forewarned.
Sunday night, before the dreadful effect of the multiple bombings was assessed, US and British intelligence sources again warned the Sri Lankans that it was not over. The unnamed terrorists were preparing a second wave of deadly violence to again tourist sites as well as transport hubs and shopping malls. Still no source was ready to name the hand orchestrating the attacks, whether Islamic State or Al Qaeda, although expert assessments are leaning more towards Al Qaeda.'
Certain well-known figures appeared to go out of their way to avoid identifying the victims as "Christian" and the perpetrators as "Muslim".
Now I get that "Easter worshippers" is a reasonable shorthand for "people praying in church on Easter Sunday". What I don't get is why it was necessary to go to such lengths - in the space of a 140-character tweet - to avoid calling Christians Christians.