BOSTON, April 15: Two bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday, killing two people, injuring 23 others and sending authorities rushing to aid wounded spectators, race organisers and police said.    

A senior US intelligence official said later that two more explosive devices had been found near the same place and were being dismantled.

About two hours after the winners crossed the line of America’s oldest and most prestigious marathon, there was a loud explosion on the north side of Boylston Street, just before the photo bridge that marks the finish line. Another explosion could be heard a few seconds later.

The Boston Marathon said that bombs caused the two explosions and that organisers were working with authorities to determine what had happened. The Boston Police Department said two people were killed and 23 others injured.

Competitors and race volunteers were crying as they fled the chaos. Bloody spectators were being carried to the medical tent that had been set up to care for fatigued runners. Authorities went onto the course to carry away the injured while stragglers in the 26.2-mile race were rerouted away from the smoking site.

Roupen Bastajian, a 35-year-old state trooper from Rhode Island, had just finished the race when they put the heat blanket wrap on him and he heard the first explosion.

“I started running toward the blast. And there were people all over the floor,” he said.

“We started grabbing tourniquets and started tying legs. A lot of people amputated. ...At least 25 to 30 people have at least one leg missing, or an ankle missing, or two legs missing,” he said.—AP

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