The Roman Catholic Church in Sri Lanka is demanding justice for the lives lost in the 2019 Easter bombing after receiving part of the presidential commission's report into the attack which they say has left a lot of questions unanswered.
More than 260 people were killed in a series of coordinated Islamist bombing attacks on three churches and three luxury hotels in 2019.
Despite a thorough investigation being promised by the government, Archbishop of Colombo Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith says the recent report has been lacking.
“The most important requirement of the commission has not been fulfilled,” he said. “The misdirection is that instead of concentrating on ... finding the people who were directly responsible for this sad event, the focus has gone in the direction of whether those in power at the time fulfilled their responsibilities or not."
Church leaders have urged congregants to dress entirely in black when attending church this weekend to highlight their calls for justice. The marking of “Black Sunday” will include a tolling of church bells at 8:45 am - the time of the attacks - plus a series of special prayers for justice for the victims.
Two local groups that had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group have claimed responsibility for the attack. However, the new report contain little detail as to the identity of the perpetrators. Archbishop Malcom urged that this information - along with information related to sources of funding and any wider enablers of the attacks - must be brought to light.
"We want to stress that if there is no concrete action with regard to finding answers to those questions ... we will be forced to call upon the entire nation to protest on the 21st of April, the second anniversary of the bomb attacks," he said.