Sri Lankan security forces shot dead at least 26 Tamil Tiger rebels in fresh fighting in the island’s embattled north, the Defence Ministry said on Thursday.
Troops killed the 26 members of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in the districts of Vavuniya, Mannar and Mullaitivu on Wednesday, the ministry said, adding that security forces suffered six soldiers wounded.
There was no immediate word from the LTTE on the latest violence.
The Defence Ministry’s claim takes the number of rebels reported killed by government troops since the beginning of the year to 4 669, against the loss of 422 soldiers.
Government figures cannot be independently verified as journalists are barred from visiting frontline areas.
Sri Lanka has been wracked by a bitter and bloody ethnic conflict for more than three decades. The rebels are fighting for an independent homeland for minority Tamils on the Sinhalese-majority island. — AFP