Lanka says military kills 11 Tamil Tiger rebels

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Colombo, Oct 14: The Sri Lankan military killed 11 Tamil Tiger rebels and one soldier also died in the clashes, officials said today, as fighting in the civil war intensifies.

The clashes in the north, focus of renewed civil war between the government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), is the latest in a series of near daily violence in recent months.

''The army killed nine terrorists in three confrontations in Vavuniya on Saturday. One soldier was killed and one injured from the confrontations,'' said a spokesman at the Media Centre for National Security.

The Military also said it killed two other Tamil Tiger rebels who came to attack the Muhamalai Forward Defence Line in Northern Jaffna Peninsula on oct 13.

The rebels, who say they are fighting for an independent state for minority ethnic Tamils in the north and east, were not immediately available for comment.

There was no independent confirmation of how many people were killed in the fighting or what happened. Military analysts say both sides tend to exaggerate enemy losses and play down their own.

The military has launched an offensive to drive the rebels from the northwestern Mannar district, after earlier this year evicting them from jungle terrain they controlled in the east.

Around 5,000 people have been killed in fighting between the military and the LTTE guerrillas since early 2006. Nearly 70,000 people have been killed and hundreds of thousands displaced since the war erupted in 1983.


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