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Maldives condemns terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka

Thousands of Maldivians reside in the neighbouring country.



The Maldives has strongly condemned a series of explosions targeting churches and hotels in Sri Lanka that has left at least 207 people dead and 450 people injured.

Condemning the bombings on Sunday morning as “cowardly acts of terrorism,” the foreign ministry declared that the Maldives “stands shoulder to shoulder with the government and people of Sri Lanka during this difficult time of national crisis and grief.”

The statement also extended “heartfelt condolences and prayers for all those affected by these heinous attacks.”

It added that the government is closely monitoring the status of Maldivians in Colombo, a city where thousands of Maldivians reside. Consular hotlines were announced for the Maldivian community to contact for information or enquiries.

There have been no reports of Maldivians affected by the blasts, according to the embassy in Colombo.

Local media reported that two Maldivians were among guests evacuated from the Kingsbury Hotel, one of three five-star properties targeted in the Sri Lankan capital.

A nationwide curfew has since been announced in Sri Lanka.

Following the attacks, local telecom companies Dhiraagu and Ooredoo offered special rates for Maldivians to call family and friends in Sri Lanka.

Security measures have been strengthened in the Maldives, the police and army chiefs told the local press Sunday afternoon. But the Maldives is not facing credible threats, they said.

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih meanwhile decided to dispatch State Minister for Foreign Affairs Ahmed Khaleel to Sri Lanka on Sunday night as a special envoy.

He would inquire about the Maldivians residing in Sri Lanka and offer assistance, the president’s office said.