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At least 19 Tamil rebels killed in Sri Lanka

The Sri Lankan military says new fighting along the front lines of the civil war has killed 19 Tamil Tiger rebels and two soldiers.

world Updated: Jul 09, 2008 17:18 IST

The Sri Lankan military says new fighting along the front lines of the civil war has killed 19 Tamil Tiger rebels and two soldiers.

Military spokesman Brig. Udaya Nanayakkara says fighting on Tuesday along the Vavuniya front killed nine rebels and two soldiers. Fighting in Welioya killed 10 rebels.

Rebel spokesman Rasiah Ilanthirayan could not be reached for comment. It is not possible to get independent accounts of the clashes because journalists are barred from the war zone. Both sides routinely exaggerate enemy casualties and underreport their own.

The rebels have been fighting since 1983 for an independent state for minority Tamils. More than 70,000 people have been killed in the conflict.