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LTTE offers assistance to Lanka for tsunami relief

The assistance offer has been made through peace broker Norway, but the rebel group said it is yet to receive a response.
PTI | By Press Trust of India, Colombo
UPDATED ON JAN 19, 2005 12:45 PM IST

Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka have made an offer of assistance through peace broker Norway in the government's efforts to provide relief to survivors of the devastating tidal wave that lashed the Indian Ocean, but said they were yet to receive a response.

The rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) told Canada's envoy in Colombo, Susan Blankhart, that they were willing to cooperate in the country's biggest relief operation in the aftermath of the December 26 tsunami disaster.

Blankhart met LTTE officials at the rebels' headquarters in northern Kilinochchi, one day after the rebel leader Velupillai Prabhakaran made his first public appearance after the disaster.

Over 31,000 people were killed in most of the island's coastal belt, including areas in the northeast within the LTTE's control.

Despite an initial thaw between the government and LTTE soon after the tsunami calamity, the two sides were soon hurling accusations at each other over the distribution of aid to the afflicted.

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