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Norwegian Mediators say Sri Lanka's Rebels Agree to Talks


Norwegian mediators say Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels have agreed to meet government officials for talks on preserving a truce threatened by the killing of the country's foreign minister.

The announcement comes one day after Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga asked Norway to arrange talks with the rebels to review implementation of the cease-fire.

Norway helped broker the truce in 2002 but the assassination of the country's foreign minister Lakshman Kadirgamar last week put the deal under strain. The government blames the rebels for the assassination, but the Tamil Tigers deny any involvement.

Thursday, parliament approved the one-month extension of the state of emergency ordered by President Chandrika Kumaratunga after the foreign minister's assassination.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.

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