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34 rebels killed in fresh fighting


Colombo : Sri Lankan troops killed 34 Tamil Tiger rebels in fresh fighting in the north of the island, the military said on Tuesday, as government forces continue their push against the rebels’ northern stronghold.

The fighting in several northern districts came as security was beefed up in the capital for a summit meeting for regional leaders and amid the government’s dismissal of a declaration of a unilateral ceasefire by the rebels.

“Day earlier fighting had killed 34 LTTE terrorists and injured 34,” said a spokesman at the Media Centre for National Security asking not to be named in line with the policy.

Sri Lanka is on high alert with some 19,000 extra police and soldiers deployed in Colombo for the South Asian Association of Regional Corporation (SAARC) summit from July 27 to Aug. 3.

The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had declared a 10-day unilateral truce starting from July 26 as a goodwill gesture for the summit but the announcement was dismissed by the government which said it had not received official notification from the rebels and was skeptical about the declaration, Reuters reported.