Blast hits truce monitors amid war warnings in Sri Lanka

Scandinavian truce monitors suffered a bomb attack in Sri Lanka early Saturday as a packed army bus narrowly escaped a mine blast amid growing calls for action to halt a return to war. Scandinavian truce monitors suffered a bomb attack in Sri Lanka early Saturday as a packed army bus narrowly escaped a mine blast amid growing calls for action to halt a return to war. A pickup truck of the Norwegian-led Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) was parked in their own premises in the eastern town of Batticaloa when the bomb went off but there were no casualties, police said.

“We have begun an investigation and the military has also started checking the other SLMM vehicles there to see if bombs have been planted in them too,” a police official in Batticaloa, 300 kilometres (187 miles) east of here said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

However, the blast came hours after the SLMM issued a statement pointing a finger at the Tamil Tiger rebels for a spate of attacks against troops and also asked the Colombo government to disarm paramilitary units.

Two weeks ago, SLMM chief Hagrup Haukland said the “volatile situation” had made the mission’s own monitoring wo