The International Committee of the Red Cross says one of its workers was killed in Sri Lanka Wednesday.
agency says Sinnathurai Kugathasan was hit by a shell while getting
water for his family in a coastal area in the north held by Tamil Tiger
The Red Cross said it was deeply saddened by his death.
the chief humanitarian coordinator for the United Nations is warning of
a "bloodbath" in Sri Lanka, where the military says it is on the verge
of defeating the rebels.
John Holmes is calling for a
"humanitarian lull" for the estimated 150,000 civilians trapped along
with rebels who are cornered in a small strip of territory in the
north. Holmes says he fears the combatants are gearing up for a final
confrontation, putting civilians at grave risk. His comments are
published in an opinion editorial in Wednesday's edition of the British
newspaper The Guardian.
Holmes also says aid workers and
relief supplies must be allowed into the conflict zone, and civilians
must be given a chance to leave the area.
Aid groups have
accused Tamil Tiger rebels of shooting civilians who try to escape or
forcing them to join their ranks. They have also accused the Sri
Lankan army of indiscriminately firing heavy weapons into the war zone.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.