Colombo, Apr 23: In the pursuit of Tiger chief Prabhakaran, the Sri Lankan army has revealed that it has closed in on the rebel and he now holds only about 10-12 sq kms of territory on the northeast coast.
Reportedly in this limited territory there are thousands of civilians who are trapped.
The army claims that Seevaratnam Puleedevan, secretary-general of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) peace secretariat, urged the international community to intervene by forcing a permanent ceasefire. But Sri Lanka ruled this out.
The Sri Lankan government had given the militants a 24-hour deadline which was not respected, after which the Lankan government proceeded with military force. Since Monday, Apr 20 at least 50,000 people have fled the Tiger-held area to safe zones.
The island country has carried on with the battle inspite of various appeals from its neighbour India, the United Nations and United States.
A senior United Nations official, Mr. Heller, Mexico's ambassador urged Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels to lay down their arms and let the UN help trapped civilians to leave the conflict zone.
On Wednesday, Apr 22 India too expressed its displeasure towards the conflict between the army and militants in the view of civilian safety. The Tamil Nadu on Thursday, Apr 23 is observing a bandh as per a notice the state's Chief Minister, M Karunanidhi issued the day before.