Sri Lanka to seek help tracking international links to attacks

COLOMBO (Reuters) - Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena will ask for foreign assistance to track international links to a series of suicide bomb at churches and luxury hotels on Easter Sunday that killed 290 people and wounded more than 500, his office said.

“The intelligence reports (indicate) that foreign terrorist organizations are behind the local terrorists. Therefore, the president is to seek the assistance of the foreign countries,” it said in a statement.

The president will also declare a nationwide emergency that will go into effect at midnight on Monday. This measure, which will grant police and the military extensive powers to detain and interrogate without court orders, was in force at various times during the civil war with Tamil separatists.

Reporting by Sanjeev Miglani; Writing by John Chalmers; Editing by Darren Schuettler