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Sri Lanka remains on edge as authorities investigate bombing suspects

In Sri Lanka, investigators have learned more about the Islamist militants they blame for a series of Easter Sunday bombings. At least 58 people have been arrested, many of them from well-off Sri Lankan families whose neighbors expressed shock at their apparent involvement. The death toll from the attacks now stands at 359. Debi Edward of Independent Television News reports from Colombo.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    In Sri Lanka, investigators learned more today about the Islamist militants they blame for Easter Sunday's suicide bombings. The death toll has now grown to 359, and at least 58 people have been arrested.

    U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said today the attacks were likely — quote — "at the very least inspired by the Islamic State group."

    Debi Edward of Independent Television News reports from Colombo in Sri Lanka.

  • Debi Edward:

    The police trying to usher people away from the first of a series of controlled explosions they conducted across the capital today. A nervous public watching on as they dealt with another suspicious vehicle.

    Security is at its highest levels here, even at the morgue, where relatives are still arriving to identify the dead. With the country's churches still in lockdown, details have started to emerge about those responsible for the Easter Sunday attacks.

    This house in a quiet residential area of Colombo was where the family of two brothers responsible for the hotel bombings lives. When the police raided the property on Sunday, the wife of one of the men triggered a suicide vest.

    Senaka lives on the same street.

  • Senaka Werasinghe (through translator):

    The woman killed herself, her two children and three policemen.

  • Debi Edward:

    Neighbor Mohammed knew the bombers father and can't believe his family were responsible.

  • Mohammed Hibrathar:

    Almost everybody knows from this lane. You know he's a famous guy and he's a rich guy. And he's a good guy too. He never thought this would happen from this house. It's a really big shock for everyone.

  • Debi Edward:

    The government have confirmed all nine suicide bombers were from well-off Sri Lankan families, and one of them studied in the U.K.

    A worker from a copper factory owned by the Cinnamon Grand bomber told us they were shocked when the bomb squad turned up.

  • Man:

    Looking, there's very, very good men. Inside…

  • Debi Edward:

    Very bad.

  • Man:

    Very bad.

  • Debi Edward:

    Police have searched this place twice in three days.

    The two police raids here had led to speculation that this was where the suicide bombers had built their bombs and their suicide vests. And although that doesn't seem to be the case, its clear there are components here that could be helpful in that process.

    The streets here are full of armed police and signs of grief, the island tonight once again under curfew.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    That report from Debi Edward of Independent Television News.

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