Twelve Sri Lankan soldiers and four LTTE cadres were killed in a major confrontation 5 km into LTTE-held territory in Vakaneri in Batticaloa district on Friday, LTTE sources said.
According to the LTTE's Peace Secretariat, over 100 Sri Lankan troops attacked LTTE positions in Kulathamadu, killing four cadres. But in a counter attack, the LTTE killed 12 soldiers.
The LTTE said that the Army troops belonged to the Deep Penetration Unit which had been supposedly dismantled after the ceasefire in February 2002.
The Army then began to fire artillery and mortars from the Miyankulam, Karadikulam and Valaichenai Paper Factory camps.
On Wednesday, the Army attacked Kadawanaikulam in Trincomalee district and killed four LTTE cadres, including three officers, Lt Col Easan, Capt Thepan and Capt Thanushan.
The Army website however said that eight soldiers were missing and five others wounded in a search operation in the Batticaloa area on Friday.