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Sri Lanka: 150 Tamil Rebels Killed in Weekend Fighting

The Sri Lankan military says its troops have killed at least 150 Tamil Tiger rebels during heavy fighting since Friday.

An army spokesman (Udaya Nanayakkara) said the Tigers launched a series of counterattacks against a military onslaught that has left them confined to a 45 square kilometer area on Sri Lanka's northeastern coast.

The military said it killed 100 rebels during fighting Friday and Saturday. Officials say 50 bodies were recovered within the past day.

Journalists and independent observers are barred from the war zone, making it difficult to confirm reports from either side of the conflict.

Tamil Tiger rebels have been fighting since 1983 to establish an independent homeland for Sri Lanka's ethnic minority Tamils.  The group claims Tamils face second-class treatment by the Sinhalese majority.

 Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters

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