Sri Lanka says offensive against rebels succeeding

COLOMBO Thu Aug 7, 2008 5:34pm IST

Related Topics

COLOMBO (Reuters) - Sri Lanka's government said on Thursday it was making gains in an offensive against Tamil Tiger rebels, as soldiers killed 16 rebels in fresh battles in the north.

Defence spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella also rejected any possibility of a ceasefire or peace talks at this stage, saying this could only happen if the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam were to lay down arms unconditionally.

"Surely, definitely, positively we are moving forward and we will not turn at any point," said Rambukwella, who is also minister for foreign employment and welfare.

"Nor we will accept any ceasefire, nor any peace negotiations unless they accept preconditions that have been laid down by the government," he told a weekly defence briefing.

The government is pursuing a strategy to gradually retake the Tiger's northern stronghold and win the 25-year civil war that has killed more than 70,000 people.

In the latest fighting on Wednesday, soldiers killed 16 rebels and wounded 64.

Last week the military said it had entered the northern district where the rebels' de-facto capital is located.

The Tigers, fighting for an independent state in north and east Sri Lanka for ethnic Tamils, have made no comment.

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Election 2014

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Mobile Tariff Up

Mobile Tariff Up

RComm to raise mobile call tariff by up to 20 percent.  Full Article 

Ukraine Crisis

Ukraine Crisis

Ukraine tightens grip on eastern town before talks.  Full Article 

Ferry Sinks

Ferry Sinks

More than 300 people missing after South Korea ferry sinks - coastguard.  Full Article 

Missing MH370

Missing MH370

Ocean floor search for missing Malaysia plane cut short again.  Full Article 

New Direction

New Direction

New CEO Nadella pushes data culture at Microsoft .  Full Article 

Champions League

Champions League

Podolski double gets Arsenal back into top four.  Full Article 

Miley Unwell

Miley Unwell

Miley Cyrus hospitalized for allergic reaction, cancels Kansas City show.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage