Tigers issue fresh warning as strikes grip Sri Lanka

Shops were closed and public transport ground to a halt in northern and eastern Sri Lanka Tuesday as Tamil Tiger rebels warned that the killing of a Tamil protestor could seriously undermine a three-year truce. Shops were closed and public transport ground to a halt in northern and eastern Sri Lanka Tuesday as Tamil Tiger rebels warned that the killing of a Tamil protestor could seriously undermine a three-year truce. Key towns in the northern and eastern provinces were at a virtual standstill following the strike called by pro-rebel activists the day after the army killed a 65-year-old man during a protest over a new police checkpoint.

“We fear that incidents like this will weaken the confidence people have in the ceasefire agreement and create anger among the people and will lead to increased tension in the prevailing fragile situation,” the Tigers said in a statement.

The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), in their first reaction to Monday’s crackdown in the district of Batticaloa, said the shooting was a violation of the truce that went into effect from February 23, 2002.

“Blocking peaceful protest by the people using arms and violence is against the rules of the ceasefire and will aff