Sri Lanka prison bus shooting kills seven

Sri Lanka prison bus shooting kills seven

Sri Lankan police officers inspect a prison bus after gunmen opened fire in Colombo, Sri Lanka February 27, 2017.Image copyright

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Gunmen sprayed the bus with bullets and then escaped

At least seven people were killed when gunmen in Sri Lanka opened fire on a prison bus outside Colombo.

Police said five inmates and two guards died in the attack near the town of Kalutara. Nine others are in hospital.

The bus was transporting a prominent underworld suspect and other prisoners to court.

Police say the shooting resulted from a feud between two gangs. The gunmen escaped after spraying the bus with bullets.

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Sri Lanka police

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Aruna Udayashantha had been accused but not convicted of several murders

Among those killed was Aruna Udayashantha, alias Samayan, who police say was a major underworld figure.

The BBC’s Azzam Ameen in Colombo says the shooting is the single deadliest of its kind in Sri Lanka for years.

There have been a number of shootings targeting prison buses.

Another suspected gang leader was injured in a prison bus shooting in the capital last March.

Police set up roadblocks after six people were killed in two separate incidents on that day, AFP news agency reports.

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