Sri Lankan fighting kills 12

Oct 12, 2007 (AFP) – At least 11 Tamil Tiger rebels and a government soldier were killed in clashes across Sri Lanka’s embattled northern region, the defence ministry said Friday. Six members of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and the soldier died in the Wanni region while four more guerrillas were killed further north on the Jaffna peninsula on Thursday, the ministry said.

One rebel was killed in a separate attack by the navy off the island’s northwestern coast on Thursday, it added.

There was no immediate comment from the LTTE, who have been fighting for a separate state for minority Tamils since 1972.

Tens of thousands have died and many more displaced since the conflict erupted.

The clashes came as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour visited the island to probe allegations of widespread abuses, including extra-judicial killings. .