Five Tigers, including regional chief killed in Sri Lanka ambush

A Tamil Tiger leader was killed together with four other rebels in eastern Sri Lanka Monday in what appeared to be an internecine clash, government military officials said. A Tamil Tiger leader was killed together with four other rebels in eastern Sri Lanka Monday in what appeared to be an internecine clash, government military officials said. E. Kousalyan, the political wing leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in the eastern region was ambushed as his convoy was travelling to the coastal district of Batticaloa, military and Tamil Tiger sources said.

Four others, including two policemen escorting Kousalyan were seriously wounded in the ensuing gunbattle, the official said from Batticaloa, 300 kilometres (190 miles) east of Colombo.

Military officials said they suspected the attack was carried out by a breakaway faction of the Tamil Tigers led by former number two in the LTTE, V. Muralitharan, better known as Karuna.

However, the pro-rebel Tamilnet.com website said Tigers blamed the attack on, “paramilitary operatives working with the Sri Lankan armed forces.”

“Mr. Kousalyan is the most senior LTTE official to be killed after Colombo