Sri Lankan air strikes violated truce: monitors

Apr. 29 (AFP) – Sri Lanka violated a ceasefire with Tamil Tiger rebels by launching air strikes this week, foreign truce monitors said Saturday, expressing fears government forces had also been involved in extrajudicial killings. The strikes conducted on Tiger targets in northeastern Trincomalee district on Tuesday and Wednesday “are a clear violation of the ceasefire agreement,” said the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), which oversees the 2002 accord.

The agreement says neither party shall engage in offensive military operations.

Sri Lanka’s military has said it acted in self-defence on Tuesday when it launched air and naval strikes against rebel positions in Trincomalee.

Air strikes continued on Wednesday and followed the attempted assassination in Colombo on Tuesday of the nation’s army chief.

A woman who claimed to be pregnant blew herself up beside his car, severely wounding Lieutenant General Sarath Fonseka while killing herself and 10 others, most of them security personnel.

Any further operations would “only add fuel to the conflict,” said the SLMM, headed by retired Swedish Major General Ulf Henricsson.

“We also fear that government security forces have, in the north and the east, been involv