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Last Updated: Thursday, 17 August 2006, 13:03 GMT 14:03 UK
Sri Lanka troops 'kill 75 rebels'
Soldier in eastern Sri Lanka
More than 100 soldiers have died in a week
Sri Lankan troops have killed at least 75 Tamil Tiger rebels in an overnight offensive in northern Jaffna peninsula, the army says.

Military spokesman Brig Atula Jayawardhane told the BBC the offensive took place near Killali lagoon.

Fighting has been going on in the area for the past week. Officials say more than 100 soldiers have been killed.

There has been no comment from the rebels and there are no figures available for any civilian casualties.

In a separate incident, right-wing Buddhist monks clashed with anti-war protesters in the capital, Colombo. No one was injured.

Air raid controversy

Sri Lanka's undeclared war is being conducted on three fronts, with air raids, artillery strikes and mortar attacks. About 100,000 people have now been affected by three weeks of hostilities.

One of those injured in the bombing in Mullaitivu receives attention (picture: TamilNet)
Rebels said the air raid victims were schoolchildren

The Jaffna peninsula, which is cut off from the rest of the country, has become the centre of the clashes.

The latest fighting came after the rebels said 61 schoolgirls died on Monday when the air force bombed an alleged former orphanage.

The government says it was a Tamil Tiger training camp.

International truce monitors and United Nations officials visited the site in Mullaitivu district and said they had seen no sign of rebel activity there.

They could not confirm the casualty figures, saying only that they had seen the bodies of 19 young people at a nearby hospital.

Reports from Jaffna say there is a shortage of food and drinking water in the area.

Aid agencies are trying to evacuate those who want to leave and get assistance to those who need it.


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