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Sri Lankan Military: 24 Tamil Rebels Killed in Clashes in North

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The Sri Lankan military says its troops have killed at least 24 Tamil Tiger rebels in clashes since Friday in Mannar district in the island's north.

The Media center for National Security said Saturday one soldier was also killed in a separate clash with the rebels in Vavuniya district - also in the north.

There has been no immediate comment from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam rebel group.

The military launched an offensive against the rebels Friday, after officials vowed to eliminate the group following this week's roadside bombing that killed 16 passengers on a bus in the rebel-controlled north.

Tamil Tigers were also blamed for last week's two bomb attacks that killed 20 people in Sri Lanka's capital, Colombo.

Tamil rebels have been fighting for an independent homeland since 1983, claiming discrimination by the majority-Sinhalese government.

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

 

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