Mortar bomb hits Sri Lanka hospital

Aug 2, 2006 (AFP) – At least one employee was killed when a shell hit a government hospital in northeastern Sri Lanka Wednesday during an artillery duel between troops and Tamil Tigers, officials said. The main hospital in Muttur was hit early Wednesday, killing an employee and wounding several others, a hospital source in the nearby hospital of Trincomalee said.

“We have asked for Red Cross help to evacuate the wounded to our hospital,” the official said. “A hospital building has taken a hit.” Muttur is about 12 kilometres (7.5 miles) south of Trincomalee by ferry across the Koddiyar bay.

A civilian wounded in the pre-dawn shelling succumbed to his injuries at Muttur, which was also without electricity due to the shelling.

The defence ministry said the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were shelling the government-held Muttur, which is guarded by a cluster of small army outposts.

There were no immediate reports of casualties among security forces, the ministry said, adding that there were unspecified losses among the guerrillas.

There was no immediate word from the rebels about the military’s statement.

However, the pro-rebel Tamilnet.com website said the Tigers killed fou