Sri Lanka blasts: 3 with 21 hand grenades arrested
Country's spice tycoon, the father of 2 bombers, also held on suspicion of aiding and abetting his sons
Sri Lankan police on Thursday arrested three suspects in Modara area of the city and seized 21 hand grenades and six swords during a raid here following the Easter Sunday bombings that left nearly 360 people dead.
The officials also seized a van, 21 locally made low powerful hand grenades and six swords. The authorities intensified raids with army's help and arrested 16 more, taking the total number of suspects under police custody to 70. The Islamist extremist group behind the blasts would have been planning the attacks for "at least 7 to 8 years", said Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka.
Father of 2 bombers held
Country's spice tycoon Mohamed Yusuf Ibrahim, father of two of the suspected bombers, was arrested on Thursday on suspicion of aiding and abetting his sons carry out the attacks.
Defence secretary resigns
Sri Lanka's Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando resigns on Thursday on a request made by President Maithripala Sirisena, Colombo Gazette reported.
Muslims flee homes over fear of attack
Scores of Muslim refugees in western Sri Lanka have taken refuge in mosques and a police station fearing backlash, activists said on Thursday. Many were thrown out of their homes by landlords while others left on their own accord. The refugees are from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen and Iran.
Sri Lanka suspends visas on arrival prog
Sri Lanka suspended its plan to grant visas on arrival to citizens of 39 nations on Thursday. "We have decided to hold it for the time being in consideration of the current security situation... Probes revealed foreign links to the blasts. We don't want this facility to be abused," Tourism Minister John Amaratunga said.
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3 injured in grenade blast