Suicide bomber strikes refugee camp: military

February 9, 2009 (AFP) – A suspected Tamil Tiger suicide bomber attacked a camp for civilians fleeing Sri Lanka’s war zone on Monday, killing 20 soldiers and eight civilians, army spokesman Udaya Nanayakkara said. He said the female bomber from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) targeted a camp near Visuamadu, an area the military recently captured from the rebels.
He said the attack was launched by the Tigers, whose decades-long armed campaign for an independent Tamil homeland has recently suffered huge territorial losses during a major offensive by government troops.

The blast came as thousands of Tamil civilians have poured out of the small jungle area still under the control of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

“At least 17 people were killed and 45 others reported injured when an LTTE woman suicide bomber blew herself up at rescue centre for internally displaced persons in Sugandirapuram, north of Visuamadu,” the defence ministry said.

Nanayakkara said the Tigers had carried out the attack to prevent civilians crossing into areas held by security forces.

Some 12,000 people have escaped the conflict zone in the past five days, military officials said, adding that nearly