At least 31 LTTE cadres and two soldiers were killed in fierce clashes in Sri Lanka's embattled northern region where army captured a portion of the rebel-held territory, officials in Colombo said on Wednesday.
As many as ten LTTE cadres were killed in confrontations with security forces as troops brought under their control areas in Mullikkandal, Minnaniranchan and Marattikannadi in Mannar region, the Media Centre for National Security (MCNS) said.
The army also said it had captured three square kms of area in north of Adampan in Mannar.
Another three Tiger rebels were killed in two different confrontations in Periyamadu in Vavuniya yesterday, the MCNS said.
While three rebels were shot dead in Nedunkandal in Mannar, two others were killed in Anandakulam in the region, the military said.
Two LTTE cadres were killed in Sirimullikulam in Mannar yesterday, the MCNS said, adding another rebel was gunned down in Weerapirayan area in the region.
At least three LTTE cadres were shot dead and 18 others injured in different incidents in Kiriibanwewa in northeast Welioya, the military said.
Separately, troops killed seven rebels and injured nine in confrontations in Welioya, the MCNS said, adding two soldiers also lost their lives.
Meanwhile, the Defence Ministry said at least 20 civilians fled from the LTTE-held areas in Mullaithivue and Malayanwadu and reached a Sri Lankan army point seeking protection.
"Security forces personnel have provided all the necessities for the escapees and steps have already been taken by the government officials to provide safe shelter for them," it said.