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Tamil Rebels Refuse to Meet Government Delegation in Norway


Tamil Tiger rebels have refused to meet with Sri Lanka's government delegation, invited to Oslo for talks by peace-broker Norway.

A statement issued in Oslo says the Norwegians have informed the Sri Lankan delegation about the rebels' decision. The discussions were to include the safety of 60 unarmed Scandinavian truce monitors caught up in violence between the two sides.

Hours before the talks were to begin, Sri Lanka's military accused the Tamil rebels of triggering a land mine, killing one army officer and wounding another. The military says the anti-personnel mine exploded Thursday in the northwestern district of Mannar. The rebels accused the army of killing two civilians in nearby rebel territory, a charge denied by the army.

The Tamil Tiger rebels have also been accusing the government of helping a breakaway faction, which has been killing Tamil rebels and civilians in the rebel-held territory.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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