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Blast near church while Sri Lanka bomb squad was trying to defuse device - Witness

Reuters logo Reuters 4/22/2019

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NEW DELHI, April 22 (Reuters) - An explosion went off on Monday in a van near a church in Sri Lanka where scores were killed the previous day, when bomb squad officials were trying to defuse it, a Reuters witness said.

"The van exploded when the bomb defusing unit of the STF (Special Task Force) and air force tried to diffuse the bomb," the witness said.

Security force spokesman were not immediately available for comment.

Sri Lankan military officers conduct inspections inside   the St. Sebastians church where a bomb blast took place in the town of Negombo, 30kms off capital city, Colombo, Sri Lanka, on April 22, 2019.  - The death toll from bomb blasts that ripped through churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka rose dramatically April 22 to 290 -- including dozens of foreigners -- as police announced new arrests over the country's worst attacks for more than a decade. © Tharaka Basnayaka/NurPhoto via Getty Images Sri Lankan military officers conduct inspections inside the St. Sebastians church where a bomb blast took place in the town of Negombo, 30kms off capital city, Colombo, Sri Lanka, on April 22, 2019. - The death toll from bomb blasts that ripped through churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka rose dramatically April 22 to 290 -- including dozens of foreigners -- as police announced new arrests over the country's worst attacks for more than a decade. (Reporting by Sanjeev Miglani Editing by Robert Birsel)

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