Lankan troops kill suspected Tamil rebel in Jaffna
Sri Lankan government troops killed a suspected Tamil Tiger rebel near a military camp on the northern Jaffna peninsula, and defused two roadside bombs in another northern town, the Defence Ministry said on Friday.
Military spokesman Brig Prasad Samarasinghe said two armed rebels were seen advancing toward a military camp in the Nagarkovil area late on Thursday.
"Our troops fired at them, killing one on the spot and the other fled with apparent injuries," he said. The main towns in the peninsula are under government control, but the rebels operate from villages and jungles.
In a separate incident, troops recovered two roadside bombs in the northern town of Vavuniya late Thursday and early Friday, Samarasinghe said.
The fragmentation bombs, which can be remote-controlled, are frequently used by the Tamil Tigers.
The rebels have been fighting since 1983 to establish an independent homeland for Sri Lanka's minority ethnic Tamils following decades of discrimination by the Sinhalese-dominated government.
A 2002 truce is still officially in effect, but has virtually collapsed since the resurgence of large-scale fighting last year.