COLOMBO, July 21, 2006 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s Tamil Tiger rebels Friday rejected a call from Sweden to reconsider a September 1 deadline for truce monitors from European Union member states to quit, a pro-rebel website said. Deaths are reported almost daily, mainly in the island’s troubled northeast where troops and rebels clash and where soldiers and civilians have been blown apart by Claymore mines.
The Tamilnet.com website said Tigers told a visiting Swedish envoy that ceasefire monitors from EU member states Denmark, Finland and Sweden, which in May outlawed the Tigers, will have to quit by the deadline set by the rebels.
“There is no change in the stand of the Liberation Tigers, expressed in the post-EU ban scenario, with regards to the engagement of EU member states (in truce monitoring),” the Tamilnet quoted Tiger political chief S.P. Thamilselvan as saying.
Swedish envoy Anders Oljelund, who arrived in the country midweek, travelled to the rebel-held town of Kilinochchi Friday to meet the Tigers after talks with government officials in a bid to end the crisis over truce monitoring.
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“The international community should exert pressure on Colombo to put an immediate end to (the) military campaign in occupied Ta