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Sri Lanka rebels suffer heavily

[AFP, Monday, 4 May 2009 09:04 No Comment]

capt.photo_1241422941312-1-0 Sri Lankan troops won control of a fortified embankment and killed several Tamil Tiger rebels in their latest advances into the guerrillas’ remaining territory, the defence ministry said Monday.


The soldiers inched their way across heavily mined terrain in the island’s northeast, where the Tigers are holed up with tens of thousands of civilians, the ministry said.


"The LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) suffered heavily during this battle," the ministry said of the clashes on Sunday.


The ministry did not give exact rebel casualties, but said a senior Tiger leader called Thamilendi was among those killed.


There was no immediate comment from the LTTE, who are facing defeat after waging a decades-long war for a separate Tamil state.


Battlefield claims cannot be verified as the Sri Lankan government bars independent reporters from travelling to the frontlines.


Five British parliamentarians began a visit to Sri Lanka on Monday for talks on the plight of civilians held by the rebels and the nearly 200,000 Tamil non-combatants held in government camps.

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