Social media services are still blocked and authorities have now imposed a nationwide state of emergency after 290 people died and 500 more were wounded in an Easter Sunday terrorist massacre that took place in Sri Lanka.
A horrifying series of eight suicide bombings ripped apart churches, luxury hotels, and other sites in the country. Among the dead were 39 foreigners, including four Americans, one of whom was a fifth grader.
Barely 24 hours later, three more unexploded bombs blew up while police sappers were trying to defuse the explosives, found close to one of the targeted churches from the previous day.
Also the same day, 87 unused detonators were discovered at a bus stop in the capital city of Colombo — one of the cities struck in the attacks — making it clear the terrorists had plans for more violence.
Authorities have taken 26 people into custody so far. They say a local radical Islamist group called the National Thowheeth Jamath was responsible for the eight explosions that targeted churches and luxury hotels across the country, albeit with the likely assistance of an international terror network as yet unnamed.
No group has claimed responsibility thus far.
But an intelligence memo dated April 11 and signed by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, warning of a possible attack was in fact circulated 10 days earlier, according to numerous international reports.
Intelligence personnel from the United States and India both had warned Sri Lanka about the impending attack; and now government officials are questioning each other, asking why the memo was ignored.
The prime minister and the cabinet were reportedly not informed about the security warnings; months of political feuding between the president and the prime minister allegedly led to the lapse in communication that proved so deadly to so many this week.