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By Agence France-Presse

The Catholic Church in the Holy Land has voiced support for Sri Lanka’s Christians and condemned Easter Sunday attacks on churches and hotels there that killed at least 156 people.

An ambulance is seen outside the church premises with gathered security personnel following a blast at the St. Anthony's Shrine in Kochchikade, Colombo on April 21, 2019. - At least 42 people were killed April 21 in a string of blasts at hotels and churches as worshippers attended Easter services, a police official told AFP. (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)
An ambulance is seen outside the church premises with gathered security personnel following a blast at the St. Anthony’s Shrine in Kochchikade, Colombo on April 21, 2019. (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)

A statement issued in Jerusalem said the blasts were particularly sad as they “came while Christians celebrate Easter.”

“We pray for the souls of the victims and ask for speedy recovery of the injured, and ask God to inspire the terrorists to repent of their killing and intimidation,” the statement said.

“We also express our solidarity with Sri Lanka and all its inhabitants in their various religious and ethnic backgrounds.”

A string of blasts ripped through churches and high-end hotels as worshippers attended Easter services in Sri Lanka on Sunday.

The nature of the blasts was not immediately clear and there were no immediate claims of responsibility.

Only around six percent of mainly Buddhist Sri Lanka is Catholic.

READ MORE: 156 dead as blasts hit Sri Lanka churches, hotels

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This picture shows a sacred 'masakaki' tree that was sent by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as an offering to the controversial Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo on April 21, 2019. - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sent a ritual offering to the controversial Yasukuni war shrine, seen by Asian neighbours as a symbol of Japan's militarist past. (Photo by JIJI PRESS / JIJI PRESS / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)
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