March 8, 2009 (AFP) – More than 100 Tamil Tiger rebels have been killed in two days of fighting in Sri Lanka as they tried to break a military stranglehold, the defence ministry said Sunday. They died when the army beat back a series of counter-attacks by the Tiger rebels against advancing government forces in the district of Mullaittivu in the northeast.
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), who were in control of large swathes of the north and east of Sri Lanka less than two years ago, have now been cornered in a small patch of jungle.
“As the Mullaittivu battle reached its last phase, the LTTE terrorists made several desperate attempts in vain to infiltrate the military forward defences,” the defence ministry statement said.
“Over 100 terrorists were killed and as many injured since Friday.”
The government accused the Tigers of deploying heavy mortars and artillery guns inside a designated security zone where large numbers of civilians have gathered to shelter from the conflict.
Concern over the danger to non-combatants has mounted as government troops fight to wipe out the remnant rebels, with the International Committee of the Red Cross saying hun