People light candles at the funeral of a 13-year-old victim of a string of suicide bomb attacks on churches and luxury hotels on Easter Sunday [Athit Perawongmetha/Reuters]

Authorities in Sri Lanka have lowered the death toll in a spate of Easter bombings by more than 100, saying the difficulty in identifying body parts at blast scenes led to the earlier inaccurate number.

The new number of people killed was 253, down from an earlier total of 359, the health ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

“Many of the victims were badly mutilated … There was double counting,” it said, adding the lower toll was reached once all autopsies were completed and cross-referenced with DNA samples.

The suicide bomb attacks on three churches

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