TITLE=SRI LANKA ATTACK (L-ONLY)
INTRO: The United Nations, says the Sri Lankan
government has confirmed 22 Tamil refugees were
accidentally killed when government planes bombed the
country's north earlier this month. Vandana Chopra
has the details from Colombo.
TEXT: Sri Lankan government officials say the
government is investigating the circumstances of the
Air Force accident which killed Tamil refugees.
The United Nations resident Coordinators office in
Colombo, says government officials have confirmed that
the casualties, incurred in Mullaitivu district during
the air attack, were the result of an accident. The
government is now investigating the incident.
Military officials had earlier denied civilian
killings saying air force jets had attacked two camps
belonging to Tamil Tiger separatists on September 15th.
After the air force attack, Tiger rebels massacred
more than 50 Sinhalese civilians in an early morning
raid on three villages in eastern
Ampara district in what the military called
Earlier this week, Foreign Minister, Lakshman
Kadirgamar blasted the United Nations for commenting
on civilian killings in his country.
He asked the UN organizations to restrict their
concerns to the social and economic development of the
The UN statement issued last week urged all parties to
the conflict to refrain from any attacks and
retaliatory attacks directed towards civilians.
But Foreign Minister Kadirgamar said the UN
organization should restrict their concerns to
"malaria and mosquitos" and not try to expand their
The rebel guerrillas have been fighting for a
independent homeland for minority Tamils in Sri
Lanka's north and east since 1983.
More than 50-thousand people have died in the island's
long conlict which has strained the government and
29-Sep-1999 06:29 AM EDT (29-Sep-1999 1029 UTC)
Source: Voice of America
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